Author's note: Certain channels continue to show reruns of this ahem... "documentary." So I'll continue to show reruns of this article...
Okay, so I'm a comedian. Don't confuse me with an expert on archaeology. But when I start getting my history lesson from James Cameron, just sink me on an iceberg. "The Lost Tomb Of Jesus" was a titanic hoax. Watching paint dry on channel 327 was more infomative. I'm trying to imagine what would happen if these guys took a swing at Islam. But Christianity is safe to bash.
Seventeen years after the discovery of this tomb it seems that someone realized there was cash to be made. Enter "Titanic" director James Cameron and Canadian TV-director Simcha Jacobovici who claim they have evidence of a Jerusalem tomb that allegedly houses the remains of Jesus and his family. Sounds great, except that...well um...the foremost archaeologists in Israel slammed the claims years ago as totally without foundation.
Dr. William Dever, an archaeologist for 50 years, says,
ďIím not a Christian. Iím not a believer. I donít have a dog in this
fight. I just think itís a shame the way this story is being hyped and
Israeli archeologist Amos Kloner, who was in charge of the 1980 investigation of the tomb says, "The claim that the burial site has been found is not based on any proof, and is only an attempt to sell." Kloner adds, "I refute all claims and efforts to waken a renewed interest in the findings. With all due respect, they are not archeologists." Kloner said that while "it makes a great story for a TV film," there is "no likelihood" that Jesus and his relatives had a family tomb, and dismissed the claims as "impossible" and "nonsense."
"Not a Lenten season goes by without some author or TV program seeking to cast doubt on the divinity of Jesus and/or the Resurrection," said Catholic League president Bill Donohue, commenting on the hype generated. "Last April," added Donohue, "NBC's 'Dateline' featured the wholly discredited and downright laughable claims of Michael Baigent, and two years ago ABC treated us to a special that questioned every aspect of the Resurrection." He concluded, "Now we have the Cameron-Jacobovici thesis."
Archeologist Joe Zias, who spent a quarter-century at the Rockefeller University in Jerusalem, said "Simcha has no credibility whatsoever."
Donohue points out that "Jacobovici's credibility explodes when one considers that he still believes the 2002 tale about an ossuary with the inscription, 'James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus.'" On June 18, 2003, the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA) in a unanimous decision the 15-member committee, condemned the 'James ossuary' as a modern forgery.
Donohue blasted the Discovery Channel for airing both the James ossuary fraud and the current one. "The Discovery Channel aired the 2002 hoax and now it's back. It's time the Discovery Channel discovered ethics and stopped with the sensationalism," he said.
Read Phil's article One Got Out.