Beatitudes Found Among Dead Sea Scrolls

A recently published fragment among the Dead Sea Scrolls contains beatitudes with some striking similarities to the beatitudes in the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5:3–12) and in the Sermon on the Plain (Luke 6:20–23)—and also some important differences. The fragment was published in 1991 by Emile Puech,a my colleague at the École Biblique […]

Bits & Pieces

Dead Sea Scrolls Coming to U.S. The Dead Sea Scrolls are coming to the United States, courtesy of the Israel Antiquities Authority. An exhibit of fragmentary scrolls will be shown at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., at the New York Public Library, and in a San Francisco museum. The first stop will be Washington, D.C. in April 1993. After a three-month stay in Washington, the show will move to New York in October.

A Pierced or Piercing Messiah?—The Verdict Is Still Out

Despite the unanimous and confident conclusion of Geza Vermes’ Oxford Forum that the so-called Pierced Messiah text (4Q285) actually celebrates the triumph of a piercing Messiah who slays his enemies,a things are not so clear. Vermes’ bald conclusion, “The fragment does not speak of a slain messiah,” surely goes beyond the evidence. It also […]

The Messiah at Qumran

Among the most intriguing of the newly released Dead Sea Scrolls is a fragment that was originally called “On Resurrection.” It was assigned for publication to Abbe Jean Starcky, who died in 1988 without publishing it. After Starcky’s death, it was given to Father Emile Puech of the École Biblique in Jerusalem, who is […]

Excavating an Ancient Merchantman
The Ma’agan Micha’el shipwreck By Elisha Linder

A chance discovery of a 2,400-year-old shipwreck off the coast of Kibbutz Ma’agan Micha’el, 20 miles south of Haifa, has been yielding a storehouse of new insights into ancient seafaring and the shipwright’s art. Thanks to recent geomorphological changes—fluctuations in the sea level, sediment movements and shifts in local faults—along Israel’s seacoast, investigators are […]

New Mosaic Art from Sepphoris

BAR readers know Sepphoris well. In the BAR 14:01 issue the mosaic known as the Mona Lisa of the Galilee appeared on the cover and was the prize find of the 1987 season.a More recently, in the BAR 18:03 issue, Sepphoris was the chief exhibit for a scholar’s contention that Jesus knew urban culture […]

How Did the Philistines Enter Canaan? A Rejoinder

The following rejoinder does not make easy reading; but a careful study of it will be well repaid. Both the original article by Bryant Wood and this rejoinder by Itamar Singer attempt to assess a large mass of archaeological and textual evidence to determine a major historical event–the Philistine entry and occupation of Canaan. […]

The World’s Oldest Poorbox

I believe I may have discovered the world’s earliest poorbox—a tangible expression of Israel’s ancient concern for the needy among its people. On one of my frequent visits to Jerusalem’s Rockefeller Museum, I noticed an object that I had seen many times before in one of the cases: a pottery bowl with an inscription. […]