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Jesus and the Ossuaries [Paperback]

Craig A. Evans
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Oct. 24 2003
In Jesus and the Ossuaries, Craig A. Evans helps all readers, experts and laypersons alike, understand the importance this recent find might have for the quest for the historical Jesus and any historical reconstruction of early Christianity. Evans does this by providing an overview of the most important archaeological discoveries, before examining nine other inscriptions (six on ossuaries, three on stone slabs) that pertain in one way or another to the historical Jesus. He then surveys the arguments for and against the authenticity and identification of the recently discovered James Ossuary. Evans concludes his volume with a measured consideration of the historical value of the archaeological data afforded by the several inscriptions.

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Product Description

About the Author

Craig A Evans is the Payzant Distinguished Professor of New Testament at Acadia Divinity College, Nova Scotia, Canada. He is the author or editor of over 30 books on the New Testament and its Jewish backgrounds.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
In what must be one of the eeriest stories narrated in the New Testament Gospels, we are told that when Jesus crossed the Sea of Galilee (or Kinneret Lake) and entered the country of the Gerasenes, "there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit, who lived among the tombs," a man no one was able to subdue, a man who "night and day among the tombs" was "crying out, and bruising himself with stones" (Mark 5:1-5). Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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5.0 out of 5 stars Ossuaries and more April 11 2004
Format:Paperback
Craig Evans has written another excellent book, Jesus and the Ossuaries. The unfortunate title, probably intended to pick-up on the popular and controversial Jame's Ossuary discovery, does not convey the breadth of the inscriptions covered in this book. Ossuaries, tomb and other stone inscriptions bearing text relevant to New Testament and early Christian traditions are well covered in this book. Pertinent Jewish burial practices are also clearly presented. While this book is an excellent resource, loaded with exceptional footnotes, it is also very readable. It is well written, compelling, yet scholarly. If only more authors would write like this! The inscriptions are organized logically, with brief explanations of their significance, the story of their discovery, their controversies, and ample footnotes for further study. The Jame's Ossuary is fairly covered near the end of the book, without any special prominence over the other material.
The popular media tends to portray archeology in terms of a glamorous quest for ancient gold and riches, but in reality, it is the textual discoveries that archeologists find priceless. Craig Evans book amply demonstrates why this is true.
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Format:Paperback
With the attention of the world and media now on the controversial disputes over Jesus and history (with "The Passion of the Christ" film and the "James Ossuary"), Dr. Craig Evans brings to light an extensive survey of the influence of stone inscriptions on Biblical exegesis. He succeeds in educating the curious public on Holy Land artifacts that have shaped our understanding of Judaism, the early Church, and the Roman Empire. Not just highlighting the recent James ossuary, he discusses many other "bone boxes" that have shed light on Jewish burial practices and their theology of death. Such information magnifies and clarifies the way we look at the significance of the grave in the ancient world, the raising of Lazarus, and even the Resurrection of Christ. He offers a fair study of the "James, Son of Joseph, Brother of Jesus" ossuary discovered in 2002.
Dr. Evans' expertise in New Testament shows in his exaustive scholarly research (complete with full references), yet he does not sacrifice the popular audience (with exciting, and some humorous, stories). This smooth-flowing look into the exciting world of archaeology- its ancient crypts and stone sarcophagi- strengthens the understanding for any Bible scholar, Christian, Jew, or history buff. "Jesus and the Ossuaries" is a soon classic and a must-read.
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.7 out of 5 stars  3 reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ossuaries and more April 11 2004
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Craig Evans has written another excellent book, Jesus and the Ossuaries. The unfortunate title, probably intended to pick-up on the popular and controversial Jame's Ossuary discovery, does not convey the breadth of the inscriptions covered in this book. Ossuaries, tomb and other stone inscriptions bearing text relevant to New Testament and early Christian traditions are well covered in this book. Pertinent Jewish burial practices are also clearly presented. While this book is an excellent resource, loaded with exceptional footnotes, it is also very readable. It is well written, compelling, yet scholarly. If only more authors would write like this! The inscriptions are organized logically, with brief explanations of their significance, the story of their discovery, their controversies, and ample footnotes for further study. The Jame's Ossuary is fairly covered near the end of the book, without any special prominence over the other material.
The popular media tends to portray archeology in terms of a glamorous quest for ancient gold and riches, but in reality, it is the textual discoveries that archeologists find priceless. Craig Evans book amply demonstrates why this is true.
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Defense for Biblical Archaeology Excellent and Relevant Feb. 19 2004
By Andrew Belli - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
With the attention of the world and media now on the controversial disputes over Jesus and history (with "The Passion of the Christ" film and the "James Ossuary"), Dr. Craig Evans brings to light an extensive survey of the influence of stone inscriptions on Biblical exegesis. He succeeds in educating the curious public on Holy Land artifacts that have shaped our understanding of Judaism, the early Church, and the Roman Empire. Not just highlighting the recent James ossuary, he discusses many other "bone boxes" that have shed light on Jewish burial practices and their theology of death. Such information magnifies and clarifies the way we look at the significance of the grave in the ancient world, the raising of Lazarus, and even the Resurrection of Christ. He offers a fair study of the "James, Son of Joseph, Brother of Jesus" ossuary discovered in 2002.
Dr. Evans' expertise in New Testament shows in his exaustive scholarly research (complete with full references), yet he does not sacrifice the popular audience (with exciting, and some humorous, stories). This smooth-flowing look into the exciting world of archaeology- its ancient crypts and stone sarcophagi- strengthens the understanding for any Bible scholar, Christian, Jew, or history buff. "Jesus and the Ossuaries" is a soon classic and a must-read.
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars They were hoaxes. Aug. 14 2014
By D. Olsen - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Like pretty much every "revolutionary" find, the boxes were proved to be hoaxes.
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