Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Current BAR Issue Online

Normally Biblical Archaeology Review posts only the introductions to their articles online (unless you're a premier member), but the March/April issue is now available to all in its entirety.  There are a number of interesting articles, but instead of listing them here, you can click over yourself

I offer only a comment on one article here: I think that Shanks' article on Emmaus is well-written, but he comes to the wrong conclusion.  I think that he wanted to write an article on the site at Latrun (formerly known as Emmaus and Nicopolis) and this pushed him to adopt this as the location of Emmaus of Luke 24.  While he recognizes the problems with this site (namely the inferior textual evidence and the lengthy distance to walk in a day), he dismisses them too quickly.  He never discusses any of the evidence for Motza/Moza/Colonieh.  Nor does anyone dispute that the Latrun site was known as Emmaus in the 1st century.  The issue is was this the Emmaus that Luke referred to, and I think the evidence makes this an unlikely candidate.

Another view is that of J. Carl Laney, given in a chapter of his doctoral dissertation.  With his permission I have digitized this chapter and posted it online (pdf).  Though the discussion is briefer, I prefer Notley's conclusion on page 368 of The Sacred Bridge.  For now, I have to leave it at that.  I think all would agree that the issue is difficult.  I appreciate BAS making this issue available for all to read and discuss.

Moza from southwest, tb030803325
Moza, identified as "Emmaus" by Josephus; 30 stadia distant from Jerusalem


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