This month the US Supreme Court decided not to hear Raphael Golb's case. This means Mr. Golb's previous convictions and jail time will be upheld. Raphael Golb is the son of University of Chicago professor Norman Golb, who had previously debated the origin of the Dead Sea Scrolls, and is now a disbarred lawyer convicted of a myriad of offenses. Raphael Golb impersonated several Dead Sea Scroll scholars in emails and blog posts to discredit their work and the validity of the Scrolls. In 2010, he was found guilty of 30 counts of identity theft, forgery, and harassment. The Appellate Courts dropped a total of 11 counts against him, but the other convictions and time remained. After the Supreme Court refused to hear his case, Mr. Golb will now finally face his punishment for the 17 charges.
Mr. Golb is an excellent example of how Satan, the enemy of our souls, will use anything and everything to discredit the validity of Scripture and scholars who research its credibility. The Dead Sea Scrolls were confirmation of the reliability of the Masoretic text, upheld the Septuagint, and provided awareness of other circulating religious books of the time period. Satan and Mr. Golb would have you to believe otherwise. Mr. Golb's efforts having been circulated on the internet have been picked up by several websites refuting the reliability and historical accuracy of the Dead Sea Scrolls and Scripture. While the authors of those anti-Christian websites were probably unaware of Mr. Golb's deception, they also have not made any effort to removing the false claims.
Therefore, as many of you already know, when it comes to the internet, using primary sources are extremely valuable for obtaining accurate information. The website should be operated by a business that is forthright in contact information and scholarly testimony. Sources like the Biblical Archeology Society at www.biblicalarchaeology.org is one of the trustworthy resources a Christian can research for accurate information.
"Behold, you have sinned against Yahweh,
and be sure your sin will find you out."
This week the BBC news released an article on the last remaining fragments of the Dead Sea Scrolls. There were six fragments written in code, which were finally deciphered by Dr Eshbal Ratson and Prof Jonathan Ben-Dov of Haifa University.
The Dead Sea Scrolls were originally found between 1947 and 1956 in caves in Qumran on the western shore of the Dead Sea. A young Bedouin shepherd stumbled across the caves when looking for lost sheep. He found jars which contained fragments of 900 scrolls; some of them were complete scrolls. It is believed an ancient Jewish sect called the Essenes were responsible for the scrolls.
The newly deciphered code reveals the names of Jewish festivals observed that recognized the seasonal transitions, which include Shavuot (Pentecost). The festivals related to Pentecost include New Wheat, New Wine, and New Oil. Researches believe this new decipher helps them understand how the scrolls were arranged originally.
The Dead Sea Scrolls have affirmed the reliability of scripture and is relevant to your faith in the written Word of God. If you would like to learn more about the Scrolls, the Leon Leavy Digital Library has a variety of information to help you understand the scrolls. They have the following subjects: Historical Background, Timelines, Discovery and Publication, Discovery Sites, Content of the Scrolls, Languages and Scripts, and Conversation.
I recently saw an article on the BBC news about the Rock Churches of Lalibela Ethiopia. These churches have been identified as World Historical Monuments and are located in a mountainous region north of Addis Ababa.
In total there are eleven ancient churches which were carved directly out of solid rock. The article noted that more rock churches are still being constructed today.
What was so amazing was the man currently building a rock church. He stated like the previous builders, he had no architectural plans or construction designs before beginning. They simply started building under the guidance of the Holy Spirit and moved with Him to create the building. The end result is nothing short of an architectural miracle, especially considering the tools they use to create these beautiful churches. The interiors are elaborately designed and the tunnel systems between churches and the housing units are intelligently crafted. There are arch doorways, complex windows, tall columns, various floors and artistic ceilings. Additionally, there is an extensive drainage system of ditches, trenches, and walkways.
The original churches were started by King Lalibela whose desire was to build a ‘New Jerusalem’ in the 12th Century after Christian pilgrimages to Jerusalem had been stopped by Muslims. The churches were designed in two major groups.
To view the complete video you can see the BBC report here. Additional video is also below from Youtube but it does not contain the rock carver interview in the BBC video.
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