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The Dead Sea Scroll Controversy Continues

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posted on Jul, 21 2008 @ 01:35 PM

Many scholars believe the Dead Sea Scrolls custodians are stalling to keep unpublished findings out of circulation that might jeopardize the traditional views of Jews and Christians.

From New York Times, July 21, 2009

In a recent request to see documents controlled by Dr. Milik, Dr. Eisenman and Philip Davies, professor of biblical studies at Sheffield University in England, wrote, ''We and many others feel that 35-40 years is enough time to wait for these materials to become generally available on a scientific basis to the scholarly community.'' Repeated telephone calls to Dr. Milik for comment were unanswered. 'Don't Think It's Innocent'

In an interview, Dr. Eisenman said, ''I don't think it's innocent, what's happening.'' He said some of the unpublished scrolls could be embarrassing if they contain information about the roots of Christianity at odds with Roman Catholic doctrine or about rabbinic Judaism that might be troubling to the Israeli Government...

At the least, Dr. Eisenman wrote in his request for access to the documents, ''a small circle of scholars has been able to dominate a field of research for several generations (even though some of these scholars have been defunct in this field for years), and to continue to do so through their control of graduate studies and placing their coterie of students and scholars in the most prestigious academic chairs.''

[edit on 7/21/2008 by Matrix1111]

posted on Jul, 21 2008 @ 01:44 PM
Your story is old. Almost all have been translated and published.

Keepers of Dead Sea Scrolls Accused of Blocking Research
Published: June 26, 1989
Some of the documents were published in a prompt manner: all of the writings found in Cave 1 appeared in print between 1950 and 1956; the finds from 8 other caves were released in a single volume in 1963; and 1965 saw the publication of the Psalms Scroll from Cave 11. Translation of these materials quickly followed.

The San Diego Natural History Museum's exhibition Dead Sea Scrolls is the largest and most comprehensive exhibition of Dead Sea Scrolls ever assembled. Twenty-four Dead Sea Scrolls—10 exhibited for the first time ever will be on display over the course of the exhibition. Created by the Museum, this exhibition will not travel. Read what the experts have to say.
Currently, 15 Dead Sea Scrolls are on display, including the oldest manuscript containing the Ten Commandments and a section of the Copper Scroll, the only scroll written on copper.

The Dead Sea Scrolls—objects of great mystery, intrigue and significance, are widely acknowledged to be among the greatest archaeological treasures ever discovered. The scrolls link us to the ancient Middle East and to the formative years of Rabbinic Judaism and Christianity. Learn more about the history of the scrolls here.

The exception to this was the documents from Cave 4, which represent 40% of the total finds. The publication of these had been entrusted to an international team led by Father Roland de Vaux, a member of the Dominican Order in Jerusalem. This group published the first volume of the material entrusted to them in 1968, but spent much of their energies defending their theories regarding the materials, instead of publishing them. Geza Vermes, who had been involved from the start in the editing and publication of these documents, blamed the delay—and eventual failure—on de Vaux's selection of a team unsuited to the quality of work he had planned, as well as relying on "his personal, quasi-patriarchal authority" to control the completion of the work.

As a result, a large part of the finds from Cave 4 were not made public for many years. Access to the scrolls was governed by a "secrecy rule" that allowed only the original International Team or their designates to view the original materials. After de Vaux's death in 1971, his successors repeatedly refused even to allow the publication of photographs of these materials, preventing other scholars from making their own judgments. This rule was eventually broken: first by Ben Zion Wacholder's publication in the fall of 1991 of 17 documents reconstructed from a concordance that had been made in 1988 and had come into the hands of scholars outside of the International Team; next, in the same month, by the discovery and publication of a complete set of photographs of the Cave 4 materials at the Huntington Library in San Marino, California, that were not covered by the "secrecy rule". After some delays these photographs were published by Robert Eisenman and James Robinson (A Facsimile Edition of the Dead Sea Scrolls, two volumes, Washington, D.C., 1991). As a result, the "secrecy rule" was lifted.

Publication accelerated with the appointment of the respected Dutch-Israeli textual scholar Emanuel Tov as editor-in-chief in 1990. Publication of the Cave 4 documents soon commenced, with five volumes in print by 1995. As of 2007 two volumes remain to be completed, with the whole series, Discoveries in the Judean Desert, running to thirty nine volumes in total

posted on Jul, 21 2008 @ 02:03 PM


IN his..... "The Dead Sea Scrolls and the First Christians" Robert Eisenman has been threatening/promising to redraw the map of Christian origins...

To anticipate the thrust of the book as a whole, let it be said that Eisenman first draws a portrait of the early community of James as a nationalistic, messianic, priestly, and xenophobic sect of ultra-legal pietism, something most of us would deem fanaticism. As Schweitzer said of the historical Jesus, this is an embarrassment and a disappointment to those who expect the original gospel to look refreshingly modernistic. Eisenman shows how "Jewish Christianity" was part and parcel of the sectarian milieu which included Essenes, Zealots, Nazoreans, Nazirites, Ebionites, Elchasites, Sabeans, Mandaeans, etc., and that these categories were no more than ideal types, by no means actually segregated one from the other like exotic beasts in adjacent, well-marked cages in the theological zoo. Over against this sort of "Lubavitcher Christianity," Eisenman depicts Pauline Christianity (plus its Hellenistic cousins Johannine, Markan, Lukan, etc., Christianities) as being root and branch a compromising, assimilating, Herodianizing apostasy from Judaism.

Dr. Eisenman defines the key conflicts that early Christians battled over in a theological, if not literal, sense:

His working hypothesis is that the confusions, alterations, and obfuscations stem from an interest in covering over the importance, and therefore the identity, of the desposyni, the Heirs of Jesus, who had apparently functioned at least for Palestinian Christianity as a dynastic Caliphate similar to the Alid succession of Shi'ite Islam or the succession of Hasmonean brothers. It is a commonplace that the gospel texts treating Jesus' mother, brothers and sisters either severely (Mark and John) or delicately (Luke, cf., the Gospel according to the Hebrews) are functions of ecclesiastical polemics over their leadership claims as opposed to Peter and the Twelve (analogous to the Companions of the Prophet in Sunni Islam) or to outsiders like Paul. It is equally well known that the Synoptic apostle lists differ between themselves and between manuscripts of each gospel. Why? Eisenman connects these phenomena with another, the confusion arising among early theologians over the siblings of Jesus as the doctrine of Mary's perpetual virginity became widespread. They had to be harmonized with the dogma, so brothers and sisters became cousins, step-siblings, etc. And characters became sundered. Mary suddenly had a sister named Mary because the mother of James, Joses, Simon, and Judas could no longer also be the mother of Jesus. And so on.

While the "heretical" early Christian views of Jesus-as-a-man-not-God have been "exorcized" by the 4th Century Roman Catholic Church and its political patrons, today we have Dead Sea Scroll documents that are re-challenging those "Jesus is God vs. Jesus is man" issues. Is there any surprise that certain institutions are against the latest interpretations of these Dead Sea Scrolls or are working to block the release of unpublished Dead Sea Scroll fragments?

Riding this wave of controversy is Dan Brown in his Da Vinci Code novel. Considering the impact this book and movie has had on the public, is it possible for the Catholic Church and other Christians to effectively do damage control? Or has the Pandora's box been opened for good?

[edit on 7/21/2008 by Matrix1111]

posted on Jul, 21 2008 @ 02:38 PM
I missed that date. Even though, the controversy continued with Michael Baigent and Richard Leigh book on the subject being published in 1991.

Eisenman's The Dead Sea Scrolls Uncovered dealt with the same controversy. It was published in 1992.

Dr. Eisenman is the only reason the Dead Sea Scrolls were made public. He was the one who got the Huntington Library to open its archives and allow free access for all scholars to the previously unpublished Scrolls. He broke the blockade.

If you've read his accessment of the scrolls, you can understand why various people wanted to block the release of the scrolls. My suspicion is that there are still parts of the scroll being conveniently hidden from the public. That's why I thought the article was current.

Anyways.... the controversy/conspiracy continues.

posted on Jul, 21 2008 @ 02:46 PM
I thought there were thousands of pages of scrolls?

I'm not too knowledgeable on the Dead Sea Scrolls, though.

If they've only made a small handful of those public, then what do the other scrolls say?

Am I wrong about this?

I don't think it really matters, in the end.

posted on Jul, 21 2008 @ 03:10 PM
reply to post by Matrix1111

There was another site where they found many writings (including the book of Judas). It was even more controversial because it dealt with many of the older Judaic rites (rising from the "dead" among others). There are at least two reasons to keep things from the public eye:
1. The researcher is writing a book on his/her findings and wants the book to be on the market a while before releasing the texts (sell more books).
2. Some religious leaders may be doing their part to keep it secret until Christians are ready to accept Jesus' wife and children.
This is just my guess and I could be wrong.

posted on Jul, 21 2008 @ 03:21 PM
reply to post by kidflash2008

You mean Mary Magdalene and the Rex Deus bloodline of the Da Vinci Code story? What about the lineage of Jesus half-brothers and sisters? What happened to them? Did James have any kids? Did Jesus go to India have have kids? Who knows? The trick is not to see beyond what we've been programmed to see.

[edit on 7/21/2008 by Matrix1111]

posted on Jul, 21 2008 @ 05:17 PM
reply to post by Matrix1111

I did not read "The Da Vinci Code" as it is fiction. I read Holy Blood, Holy Grail and several others. I do know many of the books claim not only did Jesus have three kids, but his brothers and sisters also had kids. One of his brothers went to Ireland and started a lineage there. If you look at the Celtic Christians, they were in line with the original Christians as they were not corrupted by the early Catholic Church's disputes and Councils to deal with it. There is a sequel to Holy Blood, Holy Grail that came out in 1986 (I forget the title, but it is the same authors as Grail). The first (of three) part of it dealt with the new knowledge about Jesus and his siblings. The second is philosophy of the writers (kind of boring) while the third finally states the Priory of Sion does not exist anymore. Their original contact took them on a ride. To be fair, they were a little skeptical that the Priory was still around.
There is still much to learn of Jesus (one of the many theories is he traveled to India where he died and was buried) and his family.

Edited for content

Edited for spelling

[edit on 7/21/2008 by kidflash2008]

[edit on 7/21/2008 by kidflash2008]

posted on Jul, 22 2008 @ 10:23 AM
Was the sequel The Messianic Legacy? I have that book too. Never finished it as it got too convoluted with social commentaries. Or was it another book?

Yes, Ireland retained the true essence of Christianity until Catholicism caught up with it.

I doubt Jesus had children. If he had a family, he would not have been killed. His lineage would have become the start of heaven on earth. After all, that was the plan for the Garden of Eden.

posted on Jul, 22 2008 @ 11:44 AM
reply to post by Matrix1111

Yes it was "The Messianic Link". I liked the first part, but the second third was rather long and boring to me. The third part took to long to state what they had found. Here is part three in a nutshell:
While the Priory of Sion probably existed in the past, it does not exist today.
Nothing new was written in the book except the part about Jesus' life and times.

Jesus most probably did have children and they could have started a Christian Caliphate, much like the Islamic Caliphate that started when Islam first started (it lasted for a few hundred years). The Roman Church would have been powerless to stop them and would have eventually faded out.
There is much written that Jesus survived being nailed to the cross:
The guards did not break his legs as they would do to cause a quick death.
Mary rubbed a liquid on Jesus' face (it could have been a drug).
When stabbed, he did not bleed (they missed a vital organ).

Some even state someone took Jesus' place.

posted on Jul, 22 2008 @ 01:58 PM
reply to post by Matrix1111

There was a Celtic Church.
It was kind of a time capsule of what Christianity was.
Eventually the Roman Church forced itself over the Celtic Church, as if they were the end-all of Catholicism and the Celtic Church was worthless.
The Celtic Church went out, from an Island off the English/Scottish border, into Scotland and Ireland.
They ended up getting kicked out of Scotland and it had to be re-infiltrated by the Romanists.
So, Ireland was the last spot to keep the original Christianity.
History shows that there was a family of Jesus who went to the Pope for protection.
Instead, he sent orders to exterminate them.
Ireland could have been a safe place to hide out.
The king Arthur Legend could have been a surreptitious way of preserving the memory of this family, after the RCC took over, along with the Anglo/Saxons.

[edit on 22-7-2008 by jmdewey60]

posted on Jul, 22 2008 @ 02:10 PM
reply to post by Matrix1111

I was reading some of the stuff you posted a link to.
I thought it very interesting that it recently has been determined that the scrolls were not written on-site.
So, it can not be proven that the scrolls were strictly Essene.
That is startling news, if that is true.
I read a book, or something, about these letters of correspondence found in one of the caves.
Seems to have been from an aristocratic family, hiding out from the Romans.
They did not mention anything about a bunch of Essene monks, sitting around, writing scrolls.
The idea of the DSS being Essene has prevented me from thinking they could have anything to do with the Jesus movement.
Now, I am not so sure.

posted on Jul, 22 2008 @ 02:17 PM

Originally posted by jmdewey60
reply to post by Matrix1111

History shows that there was a family of Jesus who went to the Pope for protection.

Do you have a source for this information? I find it intriguing.

posted on Jul, 22 2008 @ 02:36 PM
reply to post by Matrix1111

Look for books by Laurence Gardner:

He has written many books on the subject. He is controversial, and the books can be a little dry.

If you do a search for him on Amazon, they will find books that are in the area of Jesus and his family too.

posted on Jul, 22 2008 @ 03:26 PM
reply to post by Matrix1111

Professor, author and researcher Dr. Ken Hanson wrote a book: James and the Lost Heirs of Jesus
He was on Coast to Coast AM, on the 14th, to talk about the stone found, recently with a written text about a prophesy about someone dying and being raised, three days later.
He was on for quite a while and went into the subject of Jesus' decedents.
I am listening to it to see if he gives a reference.

P.S. I guess you have to read the book. He says, during the time of the Councel of Nicia, and gives no reference.

[edit on 22-7-2008 by jmdewey60]

posted on Jul, 22 2008 @ 04:17 PM
reply to post by jmdewey60

I will look into that book as I am also interested. Thank you for the information.
I read Joseph of Arimathea moved to Ireland and had a family. One of the claims of Laurence Gardner is the House of Stuart is descended from Jesus.

[edit on 7/22/2008 by kidflash2008]

posted on Jul, 22 2008 @ 04:39 PM
Laurence Gardner? Never heard of him. But I like the topics he writes about. The sacred ark, holy grail, hidden lineage of Jesus. Thanks for the tip.

posted on Jul, 25 2008 @ 10:37 AM

Since everyone involved in the original archaelogical digs at Qumran knows very well that the local Qumran area Bedouin were regularly selling portions of the earliest findings from Caves 1-11 (which process started as early in November 1946 when a number of whole scrolls--before they knew they had any cash value--were being burned as firewood or worked into leather shoes by the Ta'amireh Bedouin) on the black market for cash, so who knows what scrolls are still 'missing', I mean, for sure?

Do you really think it is in the interest of either the Vatican or world Rabinnic Jewry to release these priceless ancient hand written documents which were copied between BC 250 and AD 68 which show SEVERAL ALTERNATE FAMILIES OF OLD TESTAMENT BOOKS which DO NOT MATCH the 10th century AD (AD 960) Masoretic pointed (vowelled) text of the Old Testament by as much as 27% on a word for word matching process (e.g. Jeremiah, with 13 chapters different some missing altogether) that were known to not only R. Yehoshua bar Yosef the Galilean ('Jesus') but also the earliest Christian Communities who regularly quoted from these Dead Sea Scroll Related Versions? Interestingly, much of the Aramaic and Hebrew text found referring to 'biblical old testament books' line up more closely with the Greek Septuaginta LXX on a word for word match in translation than on the Masoretic Text of the Old Testament which Jews and Protestants hold to be 'inerrant' !!!

When you have up to 27% difference in textual content between an older Dead Sea Scroll Copy and the later Masoretic Text Copy, you cannot use the term 'Word of God' as a single text at all...but rather conflicting families of contradictory and competitive texts...which were copied at Qumran BEFORE THE FALL OF JERUSALEM in AD 70---after which destruction the old testament text became codified into its present day form (more or less) i.e. the Masoretic Text.

The fact that 1000 year older documents (caves 1-11) have come to light showing a mismatch is a thorn in the side of both modern Jews and Christians alike--the reason why they were NOT published immediately
Interestingly we have the story (related by his widow) of the ex-CIA Agent Miles Copeland (Agent of the US-CIA headquartered in Damascus, Syria) in August of 1947 shortly after cave 1 at Qumran was re-discovered claimed to have made colour photo-shots of the first half of a long scroll (some 27 feet long) of a pesher line by line commentary of the Book of Daniel in two languages, both Hebrew and Aramaic---his film ran out after column 12 unfortunately, and the CIA (and, according to his widow, handed over to Vatican authorities in late 1947 in some kind of document exchange) took away both the Daniel Miles scroll and colour double-slided negatives---so no trace of it exists anywhere today that could be seen by any public--or scholars outside of Vatican circles.

We keep hearing that (at least according to some persons close to the original scene of the re-discovery of the scrolls in caves 1-11 in late 1946) that several whole and partial but today very missing Dead Sea Scrolls had one time existed but are no longer available to the public at large--and may only be known by literally a handful of persons still living today.

Take a close look at the twisted history of the very long Temple Scroll from Cave 11 which sat in a damp shoebox in a fireplace for more than 15 years before being sold---by then crumbled into several pieces, sections having turned to dust in the meantime !

Also Prof. John Strugnell who died in 1997 (a Roman Catholic 'Christian Apologist Dead Sea Scholar' who worked on the scrolls since the very beginning) was in the nasty habit of hoarding 'compelling' document fragments from Cave 4 in his own private possession, some of which have never come to light, even to this day--but more and more of the fragments of Cave 4 are starting to emerge--as for me I'd settle for old photocopies if need be !

posted on Jul, 25 2008 @ 11:00 AM
reply to post by Chrystostomus

Another theory is the Knights Templar found urns with written documents in them when they dug in the Stables of Solomon. The information is supposed to contain the names of Jesus' family, including his own children and numerous nieces and nephews.
The original Christians were supposed to be an offshoot of Judaism, except it would allow Gentiles to join. There were more changes made to make it more appealing to Europeans and other cultures (getting rid of the circumcision rite for one).

posted on Jul, 25 2008 @ 02:23 PM
Tnanks for the information, Chrystostomus. Do you have a source where you got this information from?

It is a sad, desperate situation. It seems to imply that various church officials are more worried about preserving their vested interests (career, livilhood) than they are in preserving the truth.

At this point it seems that fixing the descrepancies found between scripture from the Qumran caves and today's version of the Old Testament would be a logical next step. Unfortunately that's not what happened. Instead we got stonewalling and deliberate censorship.

[edit on 7/25/2008 by Matrix1111]

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