Well it seems that some people will stop at nothing to try to disgrace Jesus Christ. Yes, now someone else, this time famous filmmaker James Cameron (Titanic) and friends seem to want to cash in on the bash Christianity craze and make money by taking their shot at Jesus. This time it’s The Lost Tomb of Jesus or Jesus’ Family Tomb hoax.
It's like the Da Vinci Code myth all over again but with slightly different details. (See www.davincimyth.com for a concise refutation that tramples the whole Da Vinci Code scam to dust.) Astonishingly, despite all the irrefutable evidence to the contrary, there are still some diehard Da Vinci Code fans who refuse to let go of their beloved hoax. I imagine we will now see quite a few diehard Lost Tomb fans running around as well. Well here it is in a nutshell, BEFORE THEY CHANGED THE STATEMENT ON 3/5/07, the elaborate jesusfamilytomb.com website, the official site of The Lost Tomb of Jesus film made the following sensational claim on its home page:
"An incredible archaeological discovery in Israel changes history and shocks the world. Tombs with the names The Virgin Mary, Jesus of Nazareth, Mary Magdalene and Judah, their son, are found and an investigation begins."
Nonsense. No such thing was found. These guys are referring to a few stone boxes or “ossuaries” as they are called from an old tomb completely unrelated to the Jesus of the Bible. Ossuaries are used for holding bones of the dead. These are not the actual names inscribed on these boxes. No names with any genuine references to Biblical persons were found. In other words in their statement we see that they have irresponsibly and deceptively added the words “Virgin” , “of Nazareth” , “Magdalene” and “their son” to common names and descriptors of the time. This is what these filmmakers fancifully assumed that the inscriptions meant without a shred of real evidence to back up their claims. For example, they assume that a box inscription translated as “Jude son of Jesus” is somehow evidence that Jesus had a son. We've heard this kind of foolishness before all too many times. The name Jesus was one of the most common names of the time and many men named Jesus had sons. This proves nothing. The deceptive nature of this website statement should be enough for anyone to walk away from these people and mark them as an unreliable source.
Obviously caving in under the pressure a bit, they amended their website statement after the movie aired to read as follows:
"An incredible archaeological discovery in Israel changes history and shocks the world. Tombs with the names Maria, Jesus son of Joseph, Mariamne e Mara, and Judah, their son, are found and an investigation begins."
This is how the home page now reads (unless they change it again). I have proof of the original statement and the fact that they just changed this statement on 3/5/07. Is this a sign of their repentance or fancy footwork? I'd say fancy footwork in the very best tradition of backpedaling efforts.
Here’s the truth regarding just two of the boxes examined:
“The Mary ossuaries (there are two) do not mention anyone from Migdal [Magdalene]. It simply has the name Mary-- and that's about the most common of all ancient Jewish female names.” [a]
Even if Cameron and friends really did find clear references to Biblical personalities on the boxes in the tomb (which they did not), it would only have been evidence of a 2000 year old hoax, a failed attempt to try to discredit Christianity. Thankfully this is not what they found and I do not think any such ancient hoax likely exists. But we must remember that there were many enemies of Christianity at that time and just like today many were out to try to discredit Christianity. It would not be that unusual or farfetched to imagine someone trying to stage just such a hoax in an attempt to ruin people’s faith. Thankfully such an elaborate hoax has probably never been undertaken.
Further, the wording of the “incredible archaeological discovery” statement from their website makes it seem like this is a very recent archaeological find. It is not. The Talpiot Tomb (some spell it Talpiyot) was discovered in 1980.
Don't be fooled by any of this. It's all fiction as any good scholar or archaeologist will tell you. The writers and producers of this material have absolutely no real evidence whatsoever to support their allegations of Jesus having a wife and child (or children plural as some claim). What they do have is bad science, hysteria, conjecture, wild hypotheses, sensationalism, speculation, staged controversy, assumptions and mere guesses passed off as a real scientific facts. These tiresome antics are nothing new. Those who are looking to align themselves with such anti-Christian thinking will probably jump on the bandwagon and buy into this latest of anti-Christianity hoaxes.
Get this clear. The Jesus Family Tomb website puts forth nothing more than a THEORY that is being hyped to the hilt. This unfounded theory is being promoted with big money and therefore is gaining fast momentum and appearing to be truth to many in the naive and unwary camp. Not only are all these claims against Christ unproven, none of these claims will ever be proven to be true because we already have an abundance of irrefutable evidence to the contrary. We know the truth and the Lost Tomb of Jesus is simply a fairytale.
Not only is The Lost Tomb of Jesus tabloid science, which is no science at all, but now we’ve got a kind of pop or paparazzi science “in reverse” with celebrities becoming the paparazzi and doggedly chasing around Biblical personalities of the past, photographing and filming whatever they can unearth even it’s boxes of unrelated bones that have nothing whatsoever to do with the personalities in question. Smacks of some real desperation I think. James Cameron, a celebrity and respected filmmaker, has likely lost much of his credibility being involved in this mess. These pop “sleuths” go on to engage the services of a list of impressive professionals and make the whole thing look credible to those who don’t know any better.
Welcome To Pop Science
There is good science, which is useful and beneficial, and there is bad science, which is useless because it is no science at all, actually more like a false religion in disguise. Using the same kind of flawed logic and "bad science" that has landed a lot of innocent people in jail, these filmmakers have given wings to their groundless biased presuppositions and preconceived notions. Their ideas are held aloft by the winds of people who simply do not want to believe what has already been irrefutably proven true: that the Biblical account of Jesus is completely accurate and Jesus is exactly who He said He is.
The bias of these people drives their alleged investigations in the same direction of their bias. History has shown that many wrongfully accused people have been put in jail by irresponsible investigators. We have seen documented account of investigators who, in the excitement of their work, inadvertently set out at all costs to prove someone guilty rather than objectively ascertain the real facts. In their haste and failure to be objective, they sometimes accidentally created (or inspired laboratories to create) the very evidence that they claim to have found. But this does not seem to be the case here with the tomb hype. Cameron and friends do not seem to have accidentally created what might appear to be actual evidence. I am no judge of man’s motives, but this looks to me like it’s intentional.
On a quick side note, this whole lost tomb affair reminds me a little of how the global warming myth, which is totally based on bad science, has gained so much ground so fast and has deceived so many. (I am referring only to the idea of man-caused or manmade global warming.) Global Warming has become very much like a false religion complete with the most rabidly unreasonable of zealots. Yet we see some of the best meteorologists and scientists utterly exposing this fear craze as nothing more than a scam that is likely to cost the taxpayers billions of dollars while lining the pockets of those who claim to have a "solution".
What’s Being Said to Expose This Hoax?
Let’s take a brief look at what some respected archaeologists and others have to say. But before we do, let me quickly point out as I have so many times before that you virtually never see media attacks like this against other so-called religions. This is just one more proof that Christianity is the one and only true religion. The devil picks no fights with counterfeits. This is because counterfeits are no threat to him. Counterfeits are his created allies. The following quote echoes my sentiments perfectly:
"The Discovery Channel, like most of the national TV elite, displays a dramatic bias in target selection when it comes to religion. There are no controversies over the historical claims of Islam, Judaism or any other religious faith. But Christianity is another story. It is routinely the subject of sensationalistic TV exposes, complete with breathless claims about how Jesus "might be" the son of a Roman soldier, or he might have survived the Crucifixion. And now he's a dad, with kids. If the Discovery Channel fails to cancel this slanderous 'documentary,' it will have to explain why it is intentionally misleading the public. This network should be embarrassed by this plunge into sensational speculation masquerading as 'science.' ” [b]
More of what experts are saying:
"It makes a great story for a TV film," Kloner told the Jerusalem Post. "But it's completely impossible. It's nonsense." Professor Amos Kloner, who oversaw the original archaeological dig of this tomb in 1980." [c]
"Leading archaeologists in Israel and the United States yesterday denounced the purported discovery of the tomb of Jesus as a publicity stunt…William G. Dever, who has been excavating ancient sites in Israel for 50 years and is widely considered the dean of biblical archaeology among U.S. scholars…said that some of the inscriptions on the Talpiyot ossuaries are unclear, but that all of the names are common…It's a publicity stunt, and it will make these guys very rich, and it will upset millions of innocent people because they don't know enough to separate fact from fiction." “ [d]
“Joe Zias, former curator of archaeology at the Israeli Antiquities Authority… described it in an e-mail to The Washington Post as a "hyped up film which is intellectually and scientifically dishonest." ” [e]
"By all ancient accounts, the tomb of Jesus was empty- even the Jewish and Roman authorities acknowledged this. [f]
(Please note that key points shown above emphasized in bold were not typeset as bold in the original quotes.)
This is just the tip of the iceberg as far as what can be cited against Jesus’ Family Tomb or The Lost Tomb of Jesus. But even with all the facts against this hoax from the scientific world, the greatest evidence of all is the Bible itself. The Bible makes it very clear that Jesus physically ascended into heaven. So it is obvious that no bones or other physical remains were left behind for potential examination. The Bible also makes it clear that while Jesus did have a mother and brothers, etc., He did not have a wife or children. It’s really that simple. Let’s keep in mind that the Bible has been irrefutably proven to be true time and time again by science and otherwise. For more information on the authenticity of the Bible and why it is 100% accurate, please see my article titled Did You Know (under the Info section).
Today in what is much a God-hating society, the Bible has been rejected and self has been elevated. So it makes perfect sense that there is virtually no fear of God among many people. For if there existed any fear of God among these kind of authors and filmmakers, no one would dare produce and publish such mockeries as Jesus’ Family Tomb, The Lost Tomb of Jesus, The Da Vinci Code or The Da Vinci Code movie. Not very long ago our culture as a whole was primarily based on an accurate Biblical worldview. Today our culture as a whole is based on an erroneous and dangerous worldly worldview. The switch was subtle and went unnoticed by the majority of people. Frogs in the kettle.
What Went Wrong?
People on a mass scale have rejected God. They do not care to acquire or retain any knowledge of Him in their minds or submit to His commands. Neither do they care to give Him thanks for what they have. People reject God primarily because they do not want to submit to His will and His ways. They want to live their lives their way, the way that they want to - not the way that God wants them too. They simply want do their own thing. They have rejected their Maker not realizing that He only has their best interests in mind.
Among those who will admit to believing in God at all, many incorrectly think of God as some kind of cosmic killjoy Who makes rules just to be annoy His creation and keep them from having fun. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Thankfully God is just and fair with us and did not create rules to keep us from enjoying life. But what if He did make rules just for that purpose? So what! He’s God and He can do whatever He wants. Who are we to question Him? Who are we the created to question the Creator? Again, God is not out to prevent us from having joy in life, but regardless, He is still God and He must be obeyed.
Here’s the thing. God’s written Word, The Bible, is a document of God’s will. The Bible is a book of freedoms not random restrictions. The Bible sets us free from the bondage of sin and death and gives us the wisdom to live lives that are pleasing to God and receptive to His grace. When you follow the Bible you are free from the punishment of crimes because you wont commit crimes. You are free from the ravages of sexual disease because you don’t take part in such things. Many more examples could be given. The Bible is truly a book of freedoms.
Our Design Parameters
We were created by God to live within certain specifications. If we choose to live outside of our design parameters, then we become a great danger to ourselves. But in order to understand why this is so, we first need to admit that we are a created being and not a random mutation of nature or product of evolution. I used the word “admit” and not the word “realize” because everyone knows that they were created. Even the staunchest evolutionist whose folly betrays their deep rebellion against God knows well that they are a created being. They just don’t want to admit it and then have to submit to God so they make up or support all kinds of foolish theories in order to try and justify their ungodly beliefs and lifestyle. This helps calm their tortured consciences. They become so adamant at keeping their seared consciences quiet that they attack anyone who comes along and brings the truth about creation vs. the lie of evolution.
Evolution and atheism are often inseparably linked. The Bible says that no man has an excuse to not believe in God. Creation testifies to God’s existence:
For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools... Rom 1:20-22
Once a person admits that God exists and that they are created beings, they can finally see things that they could never see before. For example, a person who takes illegal drugs and races his body often burns out his body and dies of an overdose. Why? The body was never designed to handle such stress so the drug user has operated outside his or her design parameters. While they may still see it as detrimental and dangerous, those who do not believe that man is a created being will not look at drug abuse as stepping outside our design parameters.
You won’t get very far in life or through this article believing that you came form a slime pit somewhere. Evolution is one of the primary vehicles that have kept a multitude of people away from God by keeping them away from receiving Christ and the eternal life that Jesus alone provides. But even Charles Darwin who started the myth finally admitted that his evolution ideas regarding the origin of man, etc. were all just unfounded theories. He rejected his own theory by citing the incredible wonders of the human eye.
But do you think the public schools logged Darwin’s public correction? No! They still teach evolution as a fact and won’t even allow those who bring the truth of Creation to even speak. This absurdity shows that Evolution, which is based on fake science, (not real science which is good science) has become one of the world’s most pervasive false religions. While the followers of evolution mock those of us who uphold the true religion of Christianity, those who adamantly support evolution are some of the most disagreeable religious zealots that will ever encounter. But of course they will almost never admit that. Many good and reputable scientists have stated that evolution is a lie and a fraud. Now that said, we can move on.
Human beings are certainly not to be compared to mere machines, but a simple illustration can bring much light. Imagine a computer that is designed by its creator (manufacturer / maker) to operate at 110 volts. But the computer (somehow) gets the bright idea to plug itself into a 440 volt industrial outlet just to se what the buzz would be like. Boom! No more computer. It has exceeded its design parameters. If I jumped off of a building thinking I could fly, I would have exceeded my design parameters and would die. I’m not a bird. People will never be birds no matter how much some might like to believe the contrary.
Here is the truth regarding Jesus: The real Jesus of the Bible was born of a virgin, lived a sinless life, performed many miracles and fulfilled many prophecies. The real Jesus was crucified and died. He rose on the 3rd day, appeared to His disciples, ascended into heaven, sits at the right hand of the Father and will return again in glory. All of us will eventually stand before Him to be judged. Are you ready? Only those who have put their full faith and trust in Jesus Christ for salvation can be saved. We all must truly believe that God sent His only Son Jesus Christ (who is also fully God and fully man) to pay the full penalty for our sins through His death on the cross and His bodily resurrection. In order to escape the penalty for our sins and receive eternal life, we must believe this, turn from sin, ask God’s forgiveness and follow Jesus Christ, putting our full faith and trust in Him for salvation (Rom 6:23, Rom 3:23, John 3:16, Rom 5:8, Eph 2:8-9). We must believe this in our hearts and confess Jesus as Lord as the Bible says. "That if you shall confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus, and shall believe in your heart that God has raised him from the dead, you shall be saved." (Rom 10:9)
For more about how to become a Christian, again please see my article titled Did You Know (under the Info section).
For those of you who think needing Jesus for salvation is nonsense, let me leave you with one thought. The Bible says that the preaching of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing.
For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God. 1 Cor 1:18
So if that’s you, if you think the preaching of the cross is nonsense, I would be afraid, very very afraid if I were you. For that fear just might drive you to repentance and acceptance of the monumental gift that Jesus has given you through His death and resurrection.
Let me leave you with this picture: If Bill Gates was standing on a street corner giving away checks for a million dollars, there would be a line of people miles long. But people like myself that tell people about Jesus are in effect giving away spiritual “checks” that are infinitely more valuable by comparison and yet there are few takers. What Jesus has given us free of charge is light years beyond even trillions of dollars. We can't even compare what Jesus has done for us to money. But nevertheless, you almost have to beg people to takes the Gift of Christ and even then most won't. That just shows how blinded the world has become to the things of God and how successful the devil has been at deceiving people.
That’s what all this lost tomb bunk is all about. The Devil wants to keep as many people as he can from coming to faith in Christ. Don’t be one of the eternal casualties. I do not doubt that we will be seeing many more such hoaxes as The Lost Tomb of Jesus. The anti-Christianity hoax business has become big business and since the love of money is the root of all evil, well you know the rest…
As I have said before, I am not asking you to take my word for anything. Check the real historical records for yourself. Examine the genuine facts and evidence. Look at the real science. Listen to real scholars and historians. Consider the eyewitness accounts and all the other irrefutable evidence that has been well documented over the centuries and you will find that what the Bible teaches about Jesus is completely true.
Note: This article began with just a basic introduction to the vast problems with The Lost Tomb of Jesus myth. Much more could be said on this subject. I expect that there already are or soon will be some writings on the Internet that expose this mess in far more depth. I highly recommend that you do more research yourself if you have any doubts that The Lost Tomb of Jesus is a hoax.
This article has received over 2,000 page views in a single day. The number of emails that I have received, both positive and negative, has been overwhelming. Thank you to all who have written in.
I would like to mention that this article is a commentary on The Lost Tomb of Jesus website as well as the theory and hype in general, but not the movie at this time. Throughout this article you will see that I have made clear references to the website, specifically the outrageous claims on the home page, but never once did I comment about the movie itself. Why? Well, the movie had not yet aired at the time that I wrote this article. I was hoping to avoid reviewing yet another anti-Christianity dramatization, but the vast amount of questions and comments that I am getting may demand that I write a commentary on the movie as well.
Please note: It has been reported that the claims of the movie differ from the claims on the website. For me this remains to be proven. If this turns out to be true, then this would be nothing new among the chaos and confusion crowd.
(Note: Heaven's Road does not necessarily endorse all the views of the following authors and sources)
[a] THE JESUS TOMB? ‘TITANIC’ TALPIOT TOMB THEORY SUNK FROM THE START by Dr. Ben Witherington
[b] What Bones of Jesus? By Brent Bozell III
[c] What Bones of Jesus? By Brent Bozell III
[d] 'Lost Tomb of Jesus' Claim Called a Stunt - Archaeologists Decry TV Film
By Alan Cooperman Washington Post Staff Writer, Wednesday, February 28, 2007; Page A03
[e] 'Lost Tomb of Jesus' Claim Called a Stunt - Archaeologists Decry TV Film
By Alan Cooperman Washington Post Staff Writer, Wednesday, February 28, 2007; Page A03
[f] THE JESUS TOMB? ‘TITANIC’ TALPIOT TOMB THEORY SUNK FROM THE START by Dr. Ben Witherington