Huff Post; Have researchers uncovered the bathtub of one of Jesus’ persecutors?
The finding is just among one of the discoveries uncovered by a team working at a site in the Mount Zion area of Jerusalem. Believed to have belonged to a wealthy Jewish aristocrat or even a priest, the mansion has been dated to the time of Jesus, about 2,000 years ago.
While the excavation is ongoing, so far, researchers from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte have unearthed rare finds, including a stone cup covered in encoded script, a cistern and even an elaborate bathtub. The site may provide valuable insight into the lives of elite families during Jesus’ day, according to a statement from the school.
“The site is fabulous,” site co-director James Tabor told The Huffington Post. “It was in a residential area, we can tell that. It’s overlooking the rest of the city and the people living in this mansion would be able to overlook the Jewish temple. This is prime property. It’s also near Herod’s palace.”
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Tabor, chair of the department of religious studies at UNC Charlotte and an expert on Christian origins and ancient Judaism, said the location of the residence and its wealthy appearance suggest its inhabitants may have belonged to an elite group of Jewish religious leaders who were among those calling for Jesus’ death.
“From what we get in the Gospel, the Sadducees, or the aristocratic priestly class, they were in league with Romans,” Tabor told HuffPost. “They wanted stability and they want to be able to run things. So we’re just guessing that, in this area of town, if this is a priestly home, this would have been the class of society that instigated the arrest and crucifixion of Jesus.”