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Bible Insight

Artifact #1 - The Bone Box

About The Students
Artifact #1 - The Bone Box
Artifact #2 - The Roman Scourge
Artifact #3 - Roman Pilum
Image Gallery

A Bone Box is a mid-sized stone case made in ancient times to hold the bones of a buried person. The box would be made as small as possible, but still big enough to hold the Femur, the longest bone in the body.

Bone Box Report

A couple of years ago a controversy sprang up about a bone box that bore the inscription James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus. This finding brought much more controversy over the bone box. There are two main arguments about the bone box.

The first argument is that the bone box is a fake. One advocate fore this side of the argument is Robert Eisenman of California State University, Long Beach. Mr. Eisenmann called the bone box too perfect. Mr. Eisenmann believes that the bone box was created by some extremely clever forger. This would then fit Mr. Eisenmanns view point that the New Testament is fictional. Few other scholars agree with Mr. Eisenmanns belief that Jesus even existed. Another belief is if this is actually the Jesus of Nazareth or is it a different Jesus. The inscription might also be talking about a different James and Joseph, since these names were especially common around this time.

The second argument is in favor of the authenticity of the bone box. The advocate for this view of the bone box, Rev. Ben Witherington III of Asbury Theological Seminary in Wilmore, Kentucky, is the complete opposite of Mr. Eisenmann. Rev. Witherington believes that the New Testament is a reliable piece of history and fully believes with the authenticity of the bone box. There is more evidence to the authenticity with the actual inscription. The inscription reads James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus. It is highly unusual for both the fathers and brothers name to be mentioned. That is unless the brother was remarkable or famous, which Jesus certainly was. This shows that this is really the Jesus of Nazareth. Also, the box was also proved to not be an extremely clever forgery when the box was tested and proven to be from about 20 B.C.- 70 A.D.


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