If you haven’t read my other posts on “The Jesus-Tomb Deception, Parts 1 and 2” and “Reaction to ‘The Lost Tomb of Jesus,'” I recommend you look in the right margin and click on the category: Jesus-Tomb. Read all four articles (counting this one).
As I lay in bed this morning, I had further thoughts on the Discovery Channel Documentary. Let’s call my three thoughts (1) THE BIG SHAME, (2) THE FUNDAMENTAL FLAW, AND (3) THE BIGGEST STRETCH.
THE BIG SHAME
Simon Jacobovici had two hours of propagandistic, highly dramatized documentary to argue for his hypothesis. Then, as a last-minute idea, the Discovery Channel had Ted Koppel bring on a panel of archaeologists and theologians to share their critiques of “The Lost Tomb of Jesus.” The big shame is that Ted Koppel could not get Simon Jacobovici under control. I wanted to hear more, especially of what William Dever and Jonathan Reed had to say. Neither of these experts is a conservative Christian defending doctrine, yet both thought Jacobovici was all wet. Jonathan Reed was awesome, calling this documentary “archeo-porn”! Unfortunately, Jacobovici (and James Tabor) talked over everyone else and the experts got very little time to speak. After having two hours to make his point, Jacobovici could not let the audience hear other viewpoints. It was a big shame. Ted Koppel, if by some astronomical coincidence you read this blog, I am calling on you to have another program without Jacobovici. Let’s hear from the experts and not from the filmmaker.
THE FUNDAMENTAL FLAW
It’s hard to pick the one fundamental flaw in “The Lost Tomb of Jesus.” I liked Jonathan Reed’s way of putting it:
The thing I really oppose is the approach. The documentary gives a chain of evidence, but there are so many ifs in the chain, it is very unlikely.
I think I would pick another point as my fundamental flaw, however: A rather ordinary middle class family tomb with ordinary Jewish names is presented as a statistical anomaly explainable only as the tomb of Jesus of Nazareth. Jacobovici doesn’t tell you some information that would be harmful to his hypothesis. How about, for example, THE FACT THAT “JESUS SON OF JOSEPH” HAS BEEN FOUND ON THREE OR FOUR OSSUARIES!! Check here to see confirmation of this fact. As I have said before, a tomb was found with some rather common names, most of which could be related to Jesus’ family, but they could also be ordinary Bills, Toms, Joes, and Marys from Judea.
THE BIGGEST STRETCH
Finally, I want to comment on what is the biggest stretch of reason in the documentary, the biggest piece of junk history they hope the undiscerning viewer will swallow. Care to guess? It is the whole Jesus was married to Mary Magdalene and has secret descendants living in Europe protected by a secret cadre of monks theory. Right, and there is a UFO hiding on the backside of the moon. And those black helicopters are U.N. personnel waiting to take over. And those contrails behind jets are a government plan to spray down U.S. Citizens with an apathy drug!
Let me ask you a question. What do you think there is more evidence for: (a) the physical resurrection of Jesus or (b) the Mary Magdalene-DaVinci Code hypothesis? We are asked to believe this Talpiot tomb is the tomb of Jesus of Nazareth largely on the assumption that Mariamnou Marah is Mary Magdalene, wife of Jesus. ALL THE WHILE, THERE IS ANOTHER THEORY WITH FAR MORE EVIDENCE WHICH WE ARE ASKED TO IGNORE.
I shared in my “Reaction to ‘The Lost Tomb of Jesus'” that there is a great place to see scholarly evidence for the resurrection of Jesus (N.T. Wright’s The Resurrection of the Son of God). I don’t expect a lot of lay-people to read it. It is difficult stuff. Somebody should write a popular level version of N.T. Wright’s great volume. But my point is this: there is amazing historical evidence that Jesus of Nazareth was bodily raised. Jacobovici and James Tabor (who I have zero respect for) completely ignore all of that in favor of a loony conspiracy theory based on fourth century gnostic texts and medieval legends.
The biggest stretch in “The Lost Tomb of Jesus” is the presentation of the Mary Magdalene-conspiracy theory hypothesis while ignoring the evidence for the greatest event in history — Jesus’ bodily resurrection.
In future posts this week, I will present in short form some of that evidence.