Excavation at Calvary
Part 3: The Ark Discovered!
Weighing the Evidence
In the past two decades, there have been a number of claims to have discovered of the Ark of the Covenant, or to have identified its location. Some claims have been ridiculous, but others are intriguing. What is different about Wyatt's claim is firstly his track record. If you have not looked at the Wyatt's evidence of the crossing of the Red Sea, please do so now. The second thing that sets Wyatt's claim apart is the location. The significance is enormous. The gospel tell us that when Jesus died, the curtain that hid the "Holy of Holies" in the temple was miraculously torn in two. What Wyatt and his team discovered here fits perfectly with that account. You may like to read my defence of Wyatt.
The Ark will not be revealed to the world until the time that God has appointed. You can be sure that when such a sign takes place that Christ's return is not far off. There are many christians who believe that events in the Middle East over the last 50 years indicate we are moving into the last phase of history, a feeling re-enforced by the events of September 11, 2001. The entrance to Wyatt's underground excavations was sealed in early 2001 by the Israeli authorities in front of television news cameras. In this context, you will find what follows tantalising, but solid proof of the ark's discovery must await the reopening of the site.
Details of the Discovery
The earlier discovery of the site of Jesus' crucifixion was confirmation to Wyatt's team that God was with them, but it was not the end goal. The whole excavation took place in response to a revelation that Wyatt received about the Ark of the Covenant while in Jerusalem.
The Calvary escarpment is made of limestone, and is riddled with caves. Near the excavated crucifixion site, Wyatt's team found a network of tunnels. These were seached to the point of the team's exhaustion. Finally, a narrow squeaze led to a chamber, about 20 ft. beneath the crucifixion site, where to Wyatt's amazement, he recognised items belonging to the temple. The chamber had evidently been filled from a larger tunnel coming from the direction of nearby Jerusalem, and the tunnel had then been sealed.
Amidst the temple items was a large stone case. It was split in two, as was the roof of the chamber, by the same crack and the same earthquake as had split the rock floor of the crucifixion site above it.
Through the crack in the stone case, Wyatt glimpsed the Ark, and then he fell unconscious for 45 minutes. Later he took a photographs with different cameras. While he could see the ark clearly, the photographs from each camera were fogged by a gold mist. The bible describes a similar mist over the Ark in This photo was taken over the shoulder of one cherubim looking towards the other cherubim. Look closely at the photo on the left. It seems this is all God will permit us to see for the time being.
In the crack in the roof of the chamber, Wyatt found a black substance. He saw the same substance on the "mercy seat" of the ark. He collected a specimen from the crack, and took it back to the USA for analysis. It proved to be badly degraded human blood, that had seeped down the crack from the crucifixion site, seen here at left.
A diagram showing the ark beneath the crucifixion site. The theological significance of this is awesome, and I am still trying to get my head around it! The ark has been found, but at the foot of the cross! The ark is sprinkled by Jesus' blood, both literally and theologically. Yet the ark is intact, and presumably so are the tablets on which the ten commandments were inscribed by the finger of God. I have a sense that the ultimate symbol of christian faith will be revealed not to be the cross alone, but the cross over the tablets of the law. Jesus blood was shed for our sins. He has freed us from the condemnation of the law. Yet it is the law that continues to define our sin and our need of Jesus' blood. It is this law which Jesus perfectly obeyed so that his righteousness might be ours through faith in him. Praise God that there is "now no condemnation for those whoare in Christ Jesus" (Rom 8:1). Jesus is our saviour, but he is also our role model. Because he is our saviour, we "have been released from the law" (Rom 7:6). Yet because he is our role model, we "uphold the law" (Rom 3:31).
A Brief Word About the Ethiopian Claim
There is one competing claim that I wish to acknowledge. Graham Hancock has given some credibility to the claim of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church that they hold the Ark of the Covenant in a small locked chapel in Axum. Hancock identified the remains of a Jewish temple on Elephantine Island on the Nile River. It was abandoned around BC 400, and Hancock argues plausibly that its inhabitants fled up river to an island in Lake Tano. A monastery was later built there, and held the ark until it was moved to Axum when that city was founded in AD 1200. I tend to believe the story, except that I don't believe the Jews of Elephantine Island ever held the ark. If you build a temple, you must put something in it. So what they had was a copy, possibly made in Jerusalem, and this is what the Ethiopian church guard to this day.
Wyatt Archaeological Research, 2502 Lynnville Hwy, Cornersville, Tennessee 37047, USA.
The video "Surprising
Discoveries 3," narrated by Jonathan
Gray (a collegue of Wyatt), is available from Surprising Discoveries, PO
Box 78510, Thames 3540 New Zealand.
Another site with interesting material and similar photos is ArkDiscovery.com.
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