News and Notes -- By: Anonymous
BSP 2:3 (Summer 1989) p. 94
News and Notes
New Light On Life Of Jesus
A UPI report in the Schenectady Gazette (3/27/89) contradicts the traditional view that the Lord Jesus Christ conducted a largely rural ministry, preaching to simple audiences in parables that centered on agriculture. It is true that He did the latter. However, it seems from evidence based on the excavations of ancient Sepphoris that He made many references to an urban life with which He was familiar. Parables like that of the unjust judge, and that of the master who entrusted his money to two servants to earn interest, deal with urban, not rural, life. Jesus and Joseph may have even worked as carpenters in Sepphoris where excellent craftsmen were in demand.
Sepphoris, the second largest city in the land in His day and the Roman capital of Galilee, was only four miles north of Nazareth. Although He never mentioned it by name, it seems certain that He went there, maybe often. Travel among other cities by Jesus and his disciples include the Decapolis, the 10 cities east of Galilee, across the Jordan River.
A large number of Greek inscriptions make it clear that Greek was the language used in Sepphoris, not Aramaic. Although Jesus spoke Galileean Aramaic, it now seems quite likely that He spoke Greek just as well and taught in it. Thus the Gospels could have been written in Greek originally, making the translation of Jesus’ words from Aramaic unnecessary.
ABR 1989 Excavation At Khirbet Nisya Postponed
Because of continued political unrest on the West Bank ABR leaders decided to postpone the excavations planned for July-August 1989 until the spring or summer of 1990. It had been hoped to find convincing evidence that a wall circled the site during the Canaanite period. But since the site we are excavating requires daily travel through an area experiencing frequent stone-throwing, it was thought prudent to wait until the situation improves.
ABR has excavated at Khirbet Nisya for seven seasons beginning in 1979. The project is being carried on as a search for Biblical Ai (and Bethel). The traditional site for Ai does not meet the Biblical requirements and, as a result, many scholars have abandoned the Biblical account and declared it a legend. ABR believes the Bible is accurate. Therefore, instead of abandoning the Bible, an effort has been made to find and explore a new site - Khirbet Nisya. The results have been most encouraging. The topography at Kh. Nisya exactly matches the Bible, and the archaeological evidence, so far, is almost a perfect match.
The Sumerian Dictionary
One of the great achievements of this century is the publication by the University of Pennsylvania of a dictionary of the long-dead Sumerian language. Actually, it won’t be fini...
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