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Garden Grave and graves

The following is one educated person's oppinion, how true it is I don't know

Two weeks ago Prof. Barkai discussed the graves surrounding Jerusalem which date back to the 2nd Temple Period. He is not a Roman Catholic or a Greek Orthodox or a Protestant. Gabi is a Jew and a modest, honest scientist in his field. He has no reason to advocate a particular position about the grave of Jesus, but he is very interested about the subject and exceptionally respectful towards the Christian beliefs system. I agree with what he said in class: "Theologically speaking, it doesn't matter where Jesus was buried - He is not there anyway..."

Garden Grave

Gabi Barkai has done extensive research at the Garden Tomb. He says that the burial cave which so many tourists visit is actually a FIRST Temple Period grave which was only re-used during the Byzantine era (that is AFTER Jesus). The Scripture say the tomb of Joseph from Arimathea was a new grave (John 19:41) so if this set of scriptures are matched, the Garden Tomb is NOT the place of Jesus' burial. But Gabi agrees that it is a lovely garden and a good place for meditation. Also, the man who identified the so called "scull hill" as Golgotha - Gordon Thomas, has been venerated too much. Suffice to say the man had very strange religious ideas! [Forgive me if I hurt your feelings in saying these things...]

On the other hand, the location of the Holy Sepulcher was outside of the city walls at the time of Jesus and there IS a 2nd Temple Period grave. Dr. Barkai says this location could more likely have been the site of Jesus burial and most responsible archeologists agree with him. Oops, there goes another hard held conviction for many Protestants! Not many of us like the sinister atmosphere of that dark and cluttered church.

At the end of the day what really matters, is that Yeshua rose from the dead, right?



As mentioned last year, I have an Archeology professor who is quite a pro on Jerusalem - Gabi Barkai. In this semester's studies we're learning about the Second Temple Period (that is the temple Herod built, which happens to co-inside with the time that Jesus was on earth).

Gabi has been an archeologist for more years than I've been alive and one of his fields of expertise is graves and tombs. He says he likes it so much because one learns so much about the philosophy of the living by studying their treatment of the dead. More about that later.


When I asked him about this picture, he immediately said - "Oh that's a late Roman period tomb", and inquired where I had taken the photo. What is of interest, is the fact that of the 1100 tombs dating to the time of Jesus, only 4 round stones have been uncovered. Yet at that time a tomb-covering was commonly called a "galal" (a "roundy") even though the majority of them were wedge shaped plugs.

This information says neither this or that and it's not intended to rock your theology. But before we get into the more weighty Passover theme, I wanted to create a bit of context.
So the next few Kingdom Firsts are purposed to do just that.


By: Hermana Viljoen emails

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