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Jesus Research and Near Eastern Archaeology: Reflections on Recent Developments

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Chapter Summary

This chapter surveys how and in what ways archaeology may be important in Jesus Research. Jesus Research attracts not only Christian scholars but also Jewish experts, like Flusser and Vermes, who have no yearning to find a Jesus worth following. Jesus Research is primarily inquisitive, and not shaped by theological agendas. Reed rightly utters a "plea for giving archaeology a more prominent voice" in Jesus Research. A convenient way to begin a survey of the most recent archaeological developments important for Jesus Research is to focus on sites, villages, and cities. The archaeological evidence available for reconstructing Jesus' time is impressive. If Jesus Research is to move forward with the attempt to reconstruct Jesus time and his place within it, then archaeological discoveries and insights are essential. Archaeological excavations in places obviously frequented by this itinerant Galilean prophet have changed the map of Jesus Research.

Keywords: Archaeological excavations; Eastern archaeology; Jesus research; Reed



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