The controversy over the new tomb of Jesus

The controversy over the new tomb of Jesus

Archaeologists working in Jerusalem say that the discovery they have made in a tomb dating from the time of Jesus could shed light on the origins of christianity.

The Biblical historian James Tabor, professor and director of religious studies at North Carolina University in Charlotte, is working with a team led by the controversial director Simcha jacobovici in the place. Using a camera inserted into a robotic arm, the team found a 2,000-year-old engraving that they believe speaks of the resurrection of Jesus in a ossuary (a limestone burial box containing human remains) in a tomb of the 1st century

It is almost like a lunar landscape feeling, something mysterious, a kind of silence, a reverential feeling", He says Tabor. “Because these people died 2,000 years ago and now we are investigating their past memories, how they buried their dead, what they left behind, that was there and then came the excitement of Will we find something or will it be another Jewish grave?”.

Jonah's whale in the tomb found

But the team thinks they have found much more than that. Tabor believes that the engraving found in the ossuary shows the biblical story of Jonah, which was eaten by a whale in the Book of jonah.

For many Christians, the story of the Old Testament of Jonah and the whale is a symbol of the resurrection of Jesus. If the engraving is of Jonah, as Tabor believes, he says it could be the first christian symbol never found. However, many biblical scholars don't quite see it.

Mark Goodacre, an associate professor of religious studies at Duke University specializing in the New Testament, says there are other explanations much more likely than the engraving could be, like a vase with handles. "It is a vessel. It is a vase. It is a vase that looks like the ones you can find from the early Roman period”.

But Jacobovici and his colleagues believe that in Greek letters found in another ossuary a few feet away from the engraving also refer to the resurrection. "Now if they were saying that he got up or was going to get up, we can argue about it, but the findings are themselves, archeology that sheds light on the big bang of Christianity.", He says.

But again, religious scholars say it's more like a big bust. “They're seeing things that just aren't there”Says Goodacre. "His head is full of 'The Da Vinci Code’”.

Robert Cargill, an assistant professor of classical and religious studies at the University of Iowa, recounted in 'Nightline’That the original image of the engraving that Tabor sent him is“clearly exposing the handles", But that handles they do not appear in the image he distributed to the press.

There are clearly handles on top of what is called the ‘Jonah fish’ image, but Tabor and Jacobovici did not include it in the museum replicas or in the CGI image.", He says Cargill. “No scholar except those who work with or for Simcha on this or any other project believe their conclusions ... The evidence does not support their sensational conclusions. But this has not stopped them from stopping to think that it may be true, so in their minds it is true”.

Jacobovici has been previously criticized when five years ago he concluded that he had found the tomb of the Jesus family, along with obituaries containing the bones of his mother, Mary, Jesus himself, Mary Magdalene, and probably (as told in "The Da Vinci Code") his beloved son.

But Tabor, like others, believes that Jacobovici has found something significant, that the two graves, barely 200 feet apart, are related in some way. Tabos has been collaborating on a new book called 'The Jesus Discovery'(The Discovery of Jesus).

We have a tomb that has the bones of Jesus and 200 feet away people celebrating his resurrection”Says Tabor. "They were able to put this together in a way that people today probably haven't considered.”.

However, as Goodacre has pointed out, no evidence that the tomb has to do with Jesus. But what Jacobovici and his critics agree on is that the exploration of these new 1st century tombs is “really exciting”.

With a degree in Journalism and Audiovisual Communication, since I was a child I have been attracted to the world of information and audiovisual production. Passion for informing and being informed of what is happening in every corner of the planet. Likewise, I am pleased to be part of the creation of an audiovisual product that will later entertain or inform people. My interests include cinema, photography, the environment and, above all, history. I consider it essential to know the origin of things to know where we come from and where we are going. Special interest in curiosities, mysteries and anecdotal events in our history.

Video: When Was the Tomb of Christ Discovered? National Geographic