Looking for archeological insights into the Bible

Discussion in 'Theological Forum' started by Pergamum, Aug 12, 2008.

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  1. Pergamum

    Pergamum Ordinary Guy (TM)

    Anyone got any good book suggestions for an archaeology commentary on the Bible?

    These sorts of insights are things that I love to read:

    After the Philistines killed Saul and Jonathan, they nailed their royal bodies on the city gates of Beth Shean, which sits near the Jordan River, far from Philistine territory. Only as we see the distances involved can we understand how deeply the Philistines were making major incursions into Israelite territory and actually controlling a very important trade route. The Israelites needed
    to control those routes to insure their political and economic security. By knowing this, we see how politically desperate King Saul had been, and what an enormous job young King David faced as he began to consolidate his kingdom.

    The terribly immoral cult center at the stone cliff at Caesarea Philippi provided the setting for Jesus to say that He would build His church on that rock. Perhaps He intended to indicate that His church would replace the paganism there, rather than to be built on one of His disciples.

    Any links or suggestions so that I can gather other insights like this?
  2. Pergamum

    Pergamum Ordinary Guy (TM)

    Anyone [crickets chipring]???????
  3. DMcFadden

    DMcFadden Puritan Board Doctor


    I don't have a "commentary" that does what you are talking about with respect to archaeology.

    You can find seven free online courses in Biblical archaeology at Bib Arch Seminary.

    Among the books I use on the subject, are . . .
    The Archaeological Encyclopedia of the Holy Land, Avraham Negev.
    Biblical Archaeology Review on CDROM from 1975-2005 for only $100 from Rejoice (Biblical Archaeology Review: The Archive).
    The IVP Bible Background Commentary: Old Testament, John H. Walton, Victor H. Matthews & Mark W. Chavalas.
    The IVP Bible Background Commentary: New Testament, Craig Keener.

    If you look at some of the new commentaries based on a socio-rhetorical method (cf. evangelical Arminian scholar Ben Witherington's commentaries), you will get some comments on life in the first century Roman empire. It is not, however, archaeological in focus.
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2008
  4. jawyman

    jawyman Puritan Board Junior

  5. Kevin

    Kevin Puritan Board Doctor

    A friend of mine (& newly minted PhD in NT) is a a prof at a local baptist undergrad school. He is an active archeologist & teaches course on the same subject. He recomends the study bible mentioned above.

    Also, He will be teaching a 2 day seminar on "local references in the letter to the 7 churches" at Haddington House this October.
  6. JohnGill

    JohnGill Puritan Board Senior

    Try various searches at Google Books and archive.org They will be up to the early 20th century. Ussher also has a lot of good information. Gill's commentary, which is online, also has valuable insights into the ancient middle east.

    Free resources ROCK!

    Hope these help.
  7. DMcFadden

    DMcFadden Puritan Board Doctor

    I would second (or "third" as it were) the recommendation for the Archaeological Study Bible. My wife has it and I never get to look at it. But it has some wonderful resources.
  8. Ivan

    Ivan Pastor

    Hmmm...NIV and Zondervan...I just can't do it.
  9. MW

    MW Puritan Board Doctor

    Just a methodological suggestion -- it was the "contribution of archaeology" which led to the demise of the Bible's historicity in theological studies. One is better served looking for biblical insights into archaeology.
  10. Backwoods Presbyterian

    Backwoods Presbyterian Puritan Board Doctor

    Also worth remembering that it is not the purpose/job of archaeology to prove/disprove anything.
  11. jawyman

    jawyman Puritan Board Junior

    The scholarship that went into the study points is outstanding. Having worked for Zondervan, I also recommend being careful what you buy from them. I believe if a person uses the AV and sticks to the articles of the ASB; a person can gain insight from those articles. I am just say I would not throw out the baby with the bath water.
  12. Ivan

    Ivan Pastor

    Duly noted, Jeff. Something to consider.
  13. DMcFadden

    DMcFadden Puritan Board Doctor

    Aw, comeon Ivan. Don't be so fussy. I already buy my news from Murdoch (Fox). Might as well get my theological views from him (Zondervan) too. :lol:
  14. Ivan

    Ivan Pastor

    LOL I don't have cable...at least for now. So I get my news via the networks and the internet. I think I heard sometime about an election coming up.

    As to the ASB, if I buy it (and I probably will eventually) I'll hold me nose when it comes to the NIV. I have really grown to detest it. And if the translation isn't enough I'm giving money to Murdoch. It's a cruel world.
  15. Pergamum

    Pergamum Ordinary Guy (TM)

    Cool, thanks for the links!
  16. cih1355

    cih1355 Puritan Board Junior

    I would recommend the book, Bible Archaeology, by Alfred Hoerth and John McRay. It is published by Baker Books.
  17. Dieter Schneider

    Dieter Schneider Puritan Board Sophomore

    Click here and search for 'archaeology'
  18. DMcFadden

    DMcFadden Puritan Board Doctor

    Yes, it is the 2008 Diaper Derby: an ossified gerontological specimen and a still wet behind the ears kid. What do they have in common? Diapers.

    I have grown to detest the NIV as well. But, since the Spirit of the Reformation Study Bible is ONLY available in NIV, there is no choice. As I said, my wife is quite impressed with the archaeological helps in the ASB.
  19. py3ak

    py3ak They're stalling and plotting against me Staff Member

    I think Alfred Edersheim does an excellent job of employing his broad knowledge of background culture while mostly letting the text be determinative.
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