Ancient History


Since the early days of Christianity, Biblical scholars and theologians have offered varying interpretations of the meaning and significance of the gold, frankincense, and myrrh that the magi presented to Jesus, according to the Gospel of Matthew (2:11).

Our Three Magi collection in the Biblical Archaeology Society Library reveals different interpretations of the “three wise men,” as they are most commonly known, and why they brought gold, frankincense, and myrrh to Jesus.

• Tradition: [...]
Sat, Dec 01, 2018
Source: Biblical Archeology Daily
virgin-mary-dura-europos

Is this wall painting of a woman at a well from the third-century Dura-Europos church the earliest image of the Virgin Mary? Photo: Yale University Art Gallery.

In the oldest known Christian church, located at the site of Dura-Europos in eastern Syria, a wall painting depicts a woman leaning over a well. Who is she? Some believe this is the Biblical scene of the Samaritan woman who speaks with Jesus beside Jacob's well (John 4:1–42). [...]
Fri, Nov 30, 2018
Source: Biblical Archeology Daily

Were the Biblical Pharisees really as bad as the New Testament makes them seem? Professor Roland Deines thinks not. Photo courtesy Roland Deines.

The common perception of Biblical Pharisees is that they are a bunch of hypocrites. They taught others to follow Jewish halakhah (law) closely and interpreted detailed rules from the scriptures, but their own practice was showy and meaningless—or at least that's what the New Testament (especially Matthew's gospel) would lead [...]
Thu, Nov 29, 2018
Source: Ancient Cultures
icon-john-the-baptist

On this late Byzantine (c. 1300 C.E.) wood panel icon, John the Baptist is identified in the top right corner with his traditional epithet, “the forerunner (of Christ).” Though mostly depicted as a man of wilderness, this icon shows him as a calm and noble figure. The tied bookroll in his left hand demonstrates the persistence of the bookroll in visual arts long after this book form had been superseded by the codex. Damaged [...]

Wed, Nov 28, 2018
Source: Biblical Archeology Daily
israelite-diet-1

It has been established that wherever pig bones are excavated in the land of Israel, they indicate a non-Israelite population. Pork was just not part of the Israelite diet, so the thinking went. Recent studies, however, prove this assumption problematic. Photo: Joe Ferraro, Baylor University, Courtesy of Deirdre Fulton.

Jews don't eat pork. Every kid knows that.

Much fewer people know that the abstinence from swine's flesh is rooted in the Biblical prohibition [...]

Sun, Nov 25, 2018
Source: Ancient Cultures

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