Biblical Archeology in Jerusalem – Spectrum of Science

In the fall of 2021, a 2,700-year-old latrine made headlines around the world. Not because it was particularly cleverly constructed, but because it came to light in Jerusalem, the holy city of three world religions, the focal point of the Middle East conflict. A dozen or more excavation projects are currently underway in the expanding metropolis. No other place attracts so much media attention with archaeological finds – no matter how commonplace the discoveries may be. An ancient latrine in Jerusalem alone can capture the imagination of millions.

Treasure hunters, religious enthusiasts, and scholars flocked to Jerusalem since the 1830s. In search of tombs and riches, they laid the foundations of Biblical archeology—the only branch of research that arose with the intention of using the tools of science to substantiate the Scriptures and thus strengthen the Christian faith. Researchers are now driven by less piety or treasure, but they still hold the Bible to be a legitimate and authentic source.

This approach is both a blessing and a curse. Despite more than a century and a half of research, there are blatant gaps in knowledge about the city’s early days, but above all about the later, non-biblical phases under Persian, Hellenistic and Arab rule. The everyday life of the former residents also raises many questions. How was their health, what did they eat, with whom in the ancient world did they socialize? …

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