Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Still not Christian history (necessarily)

This seems kind of redundant after my previous post, so I'll keep it brief.  Filmmaker Simcha Jacobovici has come up with "the best archaeological argument ever made that two of the nails from the crucifixion of Jesus have been found".  The logic is as follows: a tomb was discovered that might have been that of Caiaphas, the tomb contained nails that might have been used in a crucifixion, and (in Jacobovici's words) "since Caiaphas is only associated with Jesus's crucifixion, you put two and two together and they seem to imply that these are the nails."

First, the tomb is reported to be that of the entire Caiaphas family, not just the one guy, so they nails could have been associated with any of them.  Or with the construction of the tomb.  Or have fallen out of someone's pocket.

Second, Caiaphas is associated with Jesus' crucifixion TODAY.  At the time of his death?  Really, not so much.  For one thing, Josephus tells us he was in power for 18 years, not to mention that he has to have been a man of some importance already to have been appointed High Priest by the Roman rulers, ergo the trial of Jesus wasn't the only accomplishment of his life.   Christianity at the time was a teeny, tiny little cult.  No one but the Christians themselves would have been interested in those nails, by what logic would they bury them with Jesus' antagonist? I'm not saying they couldn't be those nails, but why on earth would they be? 

Reuters did actual research, and couldn't find a single, credible expert who gave any credence to the theory, including the Israel Antiquities Authority who was in charge of the dig.  Jacobovici himself says it's only a 'maybe'.  And yet, it's all over the freakin media.  A quick search in Google found dozens of articles, very few of which mentioned any doubts on its validity.  Because nothistory makes for good ratings.  Feh.



  1. And if Christ ever does come back, I wouldn't have thought he would want to be reminded of that particular bit of his previous visit.

  2. Excellent point!

    Sometime in futurehistory: In the time of the Second Coming, the Lord reborn entered the Cathedral to take his rightful place before his followers, took one look at the decor, and promptly vomited.