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Author Topic: "James" Ossuary  (Read 1568 times)
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« Reply #15 on: February 27, 2007, 03:29:34 PM »

A Hollywood director will today unveil three coffins he claims were those of Jesus, his mother Mary and his 'wife' Mary Magdalene.

Christians tend to get more wound up by the NT Marys than they do about Jesus.

This is a good an explanation as I know:

146 Ant. 20.5.1. At the beginning of this study, we noted how the problem of Jesus? brothers bedevils Apostle lists and post-resurrection appearances; above, p. 14. Josephus calls Theudas ?a magician?. Like ?Judas Thomas?, he is a Joshua redivivus or Jesus ?look-alike?. His relationship with ?Addai? (cf. ?Thaddaeus? above, p. 62) and with Jesus? family is signaled at Nag Hammadi (cf. ?Theuda the father of the Just One? - read ?brother of - 2 Apoc Ja 5.44; for ?Addai?, see I Apoc Ja 5.36). The additional phrase found there, ?since he was a relative of his?, shows the way towards sorting out all these confusing references to ?brothers?, ?sons?, and ?fathers?. What Acts has done is to substitute the beheading of ?James the brother of John? for Theudas/ Thaddaeus/Judas (also Lebbacus, ?of James?, and probably Judas Thomas) the brother of Jesus.

Note that it is ?the brother? theme which is the constant, and the whole fictional exercise of ?John and James the sons of Zebedee? is part and parcel of the process of downplaying and eliminating Jesus? brothers (and successors in Palestine) from scripture. The Central Triad of the early Church in Palestine can now be definitively identified as ?James (the brother of Jesus), Cephas, and John? of Ga 2:9, not the misleading ?Peter, James, and John his brother? of Gospel portraits, and the bewildering proliferation of ?Mary?s? also evaporates. ?Mary (the sister of Jesus? mother Mary) the wife of Clophas? (John 19:25), ?the mother of James and Joses and the mother of the sons of Zebedee? of Mt 27:56 (of ?James the less, Joses, and Salome? in Mk 15:40; of ?James? in Lk 24:10), now simply becomes identifiable with Jesus? mother. This is, in any event, the implication of the Papias fragment 10 in ANF which identifies Thaddaeus as the son of Mary and Cleophas and the brother of James, Simon, and Joses and, in the process, affirms the identification of Alphaeus and Cleophas. Even the ?Mary the mother of John Mark?, to whose house Peter goes in Acts 12:12 to leave a message for ?James and the brother?? (the ?brother? theme again), simply reduces to ?Mary the mother of fame?? (italics mine).

We have already shown above that ?Thaddaeus? in Mt 10:3/Mk 3:8 corresponds to ?Judas (the son) of James??read ?brother??in Lk 6:16/Acts 1:13, and that two variant mss. of Apost. Const. 8.25 identify this same ?Thaddaeus? as ?Judas the Zealot who preached the truth to the Edessenes and the people of Mesopotamia when Agbarus ruled over Edessa.? Once our comments about the relationship of Theudas to Judas Thomas and Addai are appreciated, we can make almost a one-for-one correspondence between all the executions referred to in Josephus and their fictional counterparts in the New Testament. Perhaps, even more importantly, that ?Agabus who predicts the Famine? in Acts 11:28 is but a thinly disguised version of Helen?s husband ?Agbarus? or ?Abgarus? - probably a title meaning something like ?Great King?, that is, ?the Great King of the Peoples beyond the Euphrates?. ?Adiabene? becomes part of what goes under the tide of ?the Land of Edessenes? or ?the Peoples beyond the Euphrates?, a rival Center to the expansionist aims of Agrippa?s brother?and Paul?s probable ?kinsman? cf. Ro 16:11 - Herod of Chalcis in ?Asia?.

The preventive execution of James and Simon in the time of the great drought (both drought and census are mentioned in the same sentence; cf. ?the Boaneige?? above) gives vivid indication of the existing unrest, as does the visit that preceded it of ?Simon? to Agrippa I in Caesarea with complaints similar to those of John the Baptist (above, p. 17; note that Herod of Chalcis had married Agrippa I?s daughter Bernice, later mistress of Titus, and it is Agrippa?s sister Herodias whose marital practices are the issue in the death of John the Baptist). Agrippa, as one would expect, handles the incident patronisingly, but diplomatically. That Simon would ultimately have been arrested by Agrippa or by his brother Herod of Chalcis, who succeeds him (cf. Acts 12:lff.) is a foregone conclusion; and that Luke, drawing also on the Agrippa II dining episode, would distort this into an episode where ?Peter? learns to accept non-Jews (and in doing so, unwittingly reveals that Jesus never taught table fellowship with Gentiles, otherwise why would Peter need a ?Pauline? vision to reveal it?) is typical of the working method of these documents, as we have already expounded it.

- The Dead Sea Scrolls and the First Christians - Robert Eisenman
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« Reply #16 on: March 09, 2007, 10:07:48 PM »

Well Solomon,
It would appear that Discovery has learned a valuable lesson. The punch line for us is the last sentence in the article.

March 8, 2007
Is Discovery Burying 'Lost Tomb'?
By James Hibberd
Discovery Channel's controversial James Cameron-produced documentary "The Lost Tomb of Jesus" drew the largest audience for the network in more than a year on Sunday night, but the network has taken several recent steps to downplay the project.
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Departing from normal procedures, the cable network didn't tout its big ratings win. The network also scheduled a last-minute special that harshly criticized its own documentary, and has yanked a planned repeat of "Tomb."

"This is not one where you necessarily beat the drum, from a business perspective," said David Leavy, executive VP of corporate communications at Discovery. "It's not necessarily about making money, or making ratings, or shouting from the highest office building. Sometimes having some maturity and perspective is more important than getting picked up in all the ratings highlights."

The documentary, executive produced by Oscar-winning "Titanic" director Mr. Cameron, claims to have found the family tomb of Jesus Christ, unearthed in Jerusalem. The findings include circumstantial evidence suggesting Christ and Mary Magdalene were a couple, and that they had a son named Judah.

Discovery formally announced the special last month and quickly incited a worldwide media frenzy, including stories in Time and Newsweek and links on the Drudge Report. But much of the coverage was highly skeptical of the documentary's findings. Prominent archeologists disputed the program, while Christian groups criticized it for conflicting with the New Testament.

Although Mr. Leavy said the network stands by the documentary "100 percent," the company took several unusual steps in the wake of the controversy that could be seen as distancing itself from the content.

Last week, Discovery abruptly scheduled a panel debate to air after the documentary, moderated by Discovery newsman Ted Koppel. Discovery's announcement of the panel emphasized that Mr. Koppel "has no connection to the production of 'The Lost Tomb of Jesus'" and that "the panel will explore the filmmakers' profound assertions and challenge their assumptions and suggested conclusions."

When the panel discussion aired, guests criticized the documentary as "archaeo-porn" that played fast and loose with the facts.

The day after the March 4 airing, Discovery yanked a planned repeat of "Tomb" from its more hard-news-branded Discovery Times Channel.

When the Nielsen ratings revealed that "Tomb" averaged 4.1 million viewers - Discovery's largest audience since September 2005 - the network declined to put out a press release touting the numbers, as would be standard practice for a highly successful premiere. The second-season premiere of Discovery Channel's "Future Weapons," for instance, earned a media announcement for its audience of 2.5 million. A network representative, however, insisted Discovery was not trying to bury "Tomb."

No press release on the ratings was sent out, Mr. Leavy said, because of the show's subject matter. As for the yanked Discovery Times repeat, Mr. Leavy said that outlet wasn't the best venue to repeat the special.

The last record-setting Discovery Channel project also was about a sensitive subject, the9/11-themed "The Flight That Fought Back," yet Discovery issued a press release about its ratings.

The network still plans to air a previously scheduled "Tomb" repeat on its Spanish network on March 18, as well as an HD version on Discovery HD Theater on March 28.

"We are very proud of the program - we stand by it 100 percent," Mr. Leavy said.

Mr. Leavy said the network should be credited for airing a critical post-show panel.

"We added the Koppel panel once it was clear there was worldwide interest," he said. "Our responsibility is to give viewers all the information and let them decide. There is no way to ever prove this beyond a reasonable doubt."

Moving forward, Mr. Leavy said the network plans to increase its focus on archeology projects. The network recently signed History Channel's "Digging for Truth" host Josh Bernstein to develop new archeology series and specials.

"We are going to be doubling down in this space," he said. "We will soon be back in the news with more archeology."

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