Friday, August 01, 2008

Gedaliah ben Pashhur and Jeremiah 38:1 ... probably

It would be a bit of a missed opportunity to be blogging on B2W and not to draw attention to a news story that broke yesterday.

The Jerusalem Post reports on the discovery in a controlled archaeological setting of a seal impression bearing the name "Gedalyahu ben Pashur" (cf. Jeremiah 38:1). Somehow Jim West was able to provide a photo, and sounded some cautionary notes regarding the identity of the seal's owner at the same time. Meanwhile, Lawrence Mykytiuk's informed comment on West's blog was generously promoted to article status. Charles Halton offers his perspective as a student of the ANE, and links to further reflection by Duane Smith.

While one cannot have 100% certainty in these matters, my own sense is that it makes more sense to associate the "smoke" of the seal impression with the "fire" of Jer. 38:1 than it does to dissociate them.

HT: John Hobbins