The Story of Hanukkah

The Story of Hanukkah

I co-teach a Sunday School class at my church. Actually, I go to an Anglican congregation so we call it the “Rector’s Forum.” I intended to give a 2,000 year broad sweep of Temple Mount history. Since it was Hanukkah, I thought I would introduce the...
Professor Sukenik and the first Dead Sea Scrolls

Professor Sukenik and the first Dead Sea Scrolls

On November 24, 1947, with the British Mandate approaching expiration, the nascent Jewish nation was caught up in a bloody civil war with Palestinian nationalists. Jerusalem was divided by barbed wire, booby traps, and makeshift walls as British troops strained to...
Opening the Copper Scroll

Opening the Copper Scroll

A few weeks ago, I wrote about how the Copper Scroll was found. However, in the beginning, the Copper Scroll didn’t set off the kind of alarm bells that you may expect. The black market was flooded with Dead Sea Scrolls, most of which were very fragmentary. It was a...
Finding the Copper Scroll

Finding the Copper Scroll

In the spring of 1952, Henri de Contenson, a young French scholar, mounted an expedition to scout desert terraces and cliffs in the Judean desert. They were looking for Dead Sea Scrolls, racing against the illicit Bedouin excavations by using their own team of hired...