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The Battle Rages

Is The Tomb Really His?

As with all controversial subjects, there are strong opinions on both sides of the equation. It is no different when it comes to the Jesus Family Tomb issue as to whether the archeological dig in Talpiot, a suburb of Jerusalem, was really the burial place of Jesus of Nazareth and his family. As of this time, the dig is not active; however, dialogue is very much alive.

One of the chief proponents of the Jesus Family Tomb is Dr. James Tabor, Professor and Chair of the Department of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. In spite of the fact that interest in the Jesus Family Tomb has taken a decided downturn in the wake of some very unfavorable responses to the film, Dr. Tabor continues to defend the thesis of the film and the idea that Jesus, the man, was married and had a son and that he did not resurrect, as most of Christianity believes.

Dr. Tabor's Take

Dr. Tabor has written his theory in a recent book entitled, The Jesus Dynasty: The Hidden History of Jesus, His Royal Family, and the Birth of Christianity. Essentially, his thoughts reject the virgin birth of Jesus, establish that Jesus was a royal messiah and John the Baptist (Jesus' cousin) a priestly messiah. The focus, rather than being on Jesus and his purpose on earth, was that both Jesus and John taught a return to Torah and the kingdom of God. He further says that Jesus, after facing off with the Pharisees in Jerusalem, expected that God would save his mission, but he ended up crucified instead. He claims Jesus did not rise from the dead, but the idea of a resurrection was something that was added later on to the story. Since Jesus and all of his brothers were of the Davidic line, they would form the new Davidic Dynasty and after Jesus' death, his brother Joseph took the helm to be followed later by James. According to Dr. Tabor's thought, orthodox Christianity as it is known was really developed by Paul in opposition to why Jesus and his brothers taught.

Many Scholars Have Changed Their Minds

Interestingly, many of the scholars who responded to the initial find and the subsequent film in terms of it being of monumental significance have since backed away from the issue. Much of the information and theory surrounding what was touted as fact, has turned out to be assumption. There are a number of archeologists who are interested in furthering the dig and finding more information but the interest has definitely waned over time.

At this point in time, there seems to be more weight on the side of those who do not believe the tomb is that of Jesus. The debate continues.


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