Lecture 23

Lecture 23 - Lecture 23: 4-17-06 The James Ossuary:...

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Lecture 23: 4-17-06 The James Ossuary: November 2002, authentic ossuary, but there is question whether all or part of the inscription is ancient or authentic. The problem is that the ossuary was found in the collection of an antiquities dealer. Are the letter forms consistent with what we know about letter forms in the 1 st century? Does the inscription have a Patinah in it, or was it carved in modern times? James was the brother of Jesus. We know that after Jesus’ death James became the leader of the early Christian community in Jerusalem. Anachronistic, it was a Jewish sect at that point. James and the community he was the leader of, lived a communal lifestyle and that of poverty. They rejected a wealthy lifestyle and impoverished. It was somewhat same as the lifestyle in Qumran. James was known to be a law abiding Jew, he was also very ascetic. Thus he came to be nicknamed “James the Just”. Not much else in direct information about him. Another problem is that we do not have any writings of his that survived, at least not for sure. There is one work “the letter of James” that is attributed to him, but it’s not sure as to who actually wrote it. Nevertheless there is much consistent with what we know about James. He spoke about riches and staying humble etc. We can thus see a logical extension of Jesus’ teaching opposed to what they saw of the corrupt and opulent lifestyle of the rich. Unfortunately these views got the rulers mad sometimes! The elite in Jerusalem thus put James to death! In the year (62-63 AD) They brought him before the Sanhedrin and accused him with false crimes against Jewish Law. He was then stoned. Depending of the offense there were certain numbers of ways for them to be killed. He was not killed on a Sabbath like Jesus’. There is a second century account of the death of James The Just. Normally stoning was carried out by throwing someone in a deep pit hoping to kill them by the fall, if that fails then they hit him on the head with a club. Hegisippus’ recounting is second hand, but it also gives a great way to examine the burial customs of the time. His grave is then marked by a Headstone over a trench grave. If we go by the only source we have about James’ death, then the ossuary we have is
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Lecture 23 - Lecture 23: 4-17-06 The James Ossuary:...

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