A 2,100-year-old section of the wall surrounding Jerusalem, dating from Hasmonean times, has been unearthed on Mount Zion, the Israel Antiquities Authority announced Wednesday. The excavations have revealed part of the expanded southern city wall, from the Second Temple period, when ancient Jerusalem was at its largest.
It's an old/new story. For the past 35 years, the Muslim religious authority known as the Waqf, to which Israel has given custody of the Temple Mount, has been periodically digging it up -- illegally. (That's the Israel Supreme Court's characterization.)
The Orthodox community should take advantage of the firestorm created by Rabbi David Wolpe's Exodus sermon to make its own compelling case. What we need right now is more light, not more heat. I'd love to see us share that light.
The timing could not have been better.
When the California Museum of Ancient Art scheduled its lecture series on "The Archaeology of Ancient Israel" to begin Monday, May 14, at Wilshire Boulevard Temple, it could not have known that Rabbi David Wolpe's Passover sermon touching on doubts about the historical accuracy of the Exodus story would spark a wave of local interest in Biblical archaeology.
Pack up your Passover dishes for good. The Exodus, according to some modern university scholars and liberal rabbis, never really happened. That's what the Los Angeles Times told us in great detail last week in a long article published at the end of the holiday. But the piece, while raising some important questions, skirts some of the most fundamental issues.
Indiana Jones battled snakes, boulders and heathens during his archaeological quests, which sounds like great adventure to me.