“When Pilate therefore heard that saying, he brought Jesus out and sat down in the judgment seat in a place that is called The Pavement…” John 19:13
I believe in God and His Word as conveyed to us in the pages of the Bible. Extra-biblical evidence does not determine my faith. It is, however, satisfying to learn about archeological finds that confirm biblical accuracy. You might recall – or want to read – my review series of The Exodus Case by Dr. Lennart Moller. Look in my archives starting 10/22/2014. There are 7 installments (with a few other items tossed in between).
There is a new discovery pending study and confirmation. There are always going to be pro and con camps on all such things, but the bottom line is both sides agree that Jesus’ trial happened. They just differ on which site at Jerusalem.
The new discovery was started 15 years ago when Herod’s palace was discovered. From the article:
“The exact spot upon which Jesus stood as he was sentenced to death, may have been pinpointed by archaeologists in Jerusalem.
“Discovered around 15 years ago, the remains of Herod the Great’s palace have been carefully examined and a place between a gate and uneven stone pavement has been identified as fitting the description of the event in the Gospel of John.”
Archeologist Shimon Gibson from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte believes the site is a match. Again, from the article:
“The Gospel of John describes the trial of Jesus taking place near a gate and uneven pavement, which some archaeologists…believe matches evidence at the site.”
Others agree, as the consensus is that the trial took place near the Tower of David nearby. Others believe that Jesus’ trial happened at Pilot’s compound, not Herod’s palace. This interpretation is based on the use of certain terminology in the Gospel. So this camp says it happened at the existing Antonia Fortress. That has been the site traditionally identified.
So where will the tourists go when Herod’s palace has been excavated, preserved, and opened to the public? Well,…
“Reverend Pileggi doesn’t think that the prison (Herod’s palace site was used as a prison at one time) will become a major site of pilgrimage. ‘What makes a place holy is the fact that people have gone there for hundreds of years, prayed, cried and even celebrated there, so I don’t think there will be changes to the route anytime soon,’ he said.
I say, whether it’s the traditional site or Herod’s palace, both are equally impressive as further archeological sites that confirm the people, events, and places from biblical history.
Should you ever decide to brave the Middle East in general and Jerusalem in particular, go to both! If you want to just read about it…