• The Jesus Family Tomb

  • The Discovery and Evidence That Could Change History
  • By: Simcha Jacobovici
  • Narrated by: Michael Ciulla
  • Length: 9 hrs and 21 mins
  • 4.1 out of 5 stars (132 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The Jesus Family Tomb tells the story of what may very well be the greatest archaeological find of all time: the discovery and investigation of the tomb belonging to Jesus' family. The tomb in question houses ossuaries (bone boxes) with inscriptions bearing the names of Jesus of Nazareth, the Virgin Mary, Mary Magdalene, and Judas, the son of Jesus. This crypt has been overlooked and ignored for years and exists today under a patio just outside of Jerusalem. The authors have tracked down the location and been granted unequaled access to inspect the findings within the tomb. The artifacts were found, recorded, and catalogued by professional archaeologists in a controlled setting. There is no question of their authenticity.

This is a story that is destined to grab international headlines and raise fundamental questions about the origins of Christianity. The question will undoubtedly arise: are these inscriptions referring to a Jesus and Mary other than the Jesus and Mary of the Gospels? To this end, the listener participates in one of the most controversial investigations of an archaeological find in history. Starting with critical DNA testing from the human remains, the authors, with the help of top scholars and industry leaders, walk us through the actual timeline of the discovery, including an interview with the man who stumbled across the original unearthing of the tomb in 1980. They also detail the paleographic analysis of the ossuaries; analyze the symbology of the tomb and the ossuaries; reveal the importance of the names, using both the New Testament and Apocrypha; and evaluate the patina residue and the statistical probabilities of the cluster of names in the specific location.

A fascinating combination of history, archaeology, and theology, the revelations in this audiobook will change the way we think about God, religion, and everything we have learned about the life and death of Jesus.

©2007 Simcha Jacobovici and Charles Pellegrino (P)2007 HarperCollins Publishers
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History

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What listeners say about The Jesus Family Tomb

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Can It Really Be?

Let's get one thing straight, this aint the DaVinci Code. I have already heard a few of my friends refering to this tomb as a Dan Brown doppleganger! Dan Brown's work was fictional, you can still buy any of his books if you look in the fiction section of this or any other book store. Simcha Jacobovici and Charles Pelligreno have given us a documentary peice, which is, to say the least, 'Earth Shattering.' They claim to have found the Tomb of Jesus Christ, and his family. If anything else, these guys did thier homework! They spill out thier theory with astounding casework done by world reknown Archaeologists, Statistitions, Doctors, and Scientists. Because of the nature of the subject, Mr. Jacobovici gave his readers an accurate depiction of life during Jesus' time, and is respectful to Christianity, and sticks to theological fact. I could go into detail, but that would spoil the pleasure of discovering this for yourself. Add an introduction by James Cameron (Terminator & Titanic,) and 'The Jesus Family Tomb' becomes a must read! Can it really be that the Historical Jesus has been found, at last? Mosey on over to the Non-Fiction section and find out.

19 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Very Interesting

While you have to take their word on the "facts" in this book ( The Patina Fingerprinting results, the way the inscriptions are made, the special name of Mary Magdalen, etc...) They present one compelling story for the fact that they did find the tomb and that this tomb is what they say it is.

I would like to see someone actually redo all their work and either prove or disprove them.

I have no problems with the fact that Jesus was human, that he looked like a middle eastern male, that he was probably married, in fact all those things make their work even more credible. I've read one long article talking about how this entire work is a large farce, but it is far more believable that large portions of the literal interpretation of the bible. (Creation story, Noah's Ark, Tower of Babel, Moses and the Red Sea....)

These guys at least found a way to explain most of what they found. Some of it is far fetched (templars and skulls), but that is of little impact on the science they put into the excavation and the justification for their claims.

Keep your mind open enough to listen to the book, if you don't want to believe it, you don't have to, but if your faith is so shaky that it can't stand listening to the ideas, then maybe you need to ask yourself what your faith really is.....

15 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars

Boring Money Grubbing Schlock

This “book” could be summed up as: A tomb was found with several engraved names associated with Jesus. Yes, we know, Jesus, Joseph, and Mary were very common names back then, but the odds of finding these names together is (hold on to your hats), an amazing, 1 in 600! Yes indeedee! Plus we have DNA evidence that shows, conclusively, that an empty bone box that is not engraved Mary Magdalene, but some other name likely to be her anyway, contained dead Mary goop that is not at all related to the dead Jesus goop in his empty bone box! Yep – not one bit related! DNA!! Not only that! We found the tomb itself and explored it and found absolutely NOTHING! Yep, if that does not convince you we have found dead Jesus goop, I just don’t know what will! Oh yea, we are sorry we accidentally broke the Jesus bone box to smithereens."

Clearly I was not impress by this "evidence". The authors basically admit they approached this as a money making scheme from the very beginning. The book was at lot more about "non-disclosure" than about science. At least “The Da Vinci Code” was a fun read.

10 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Fascinating

Full disclosure: I'm an Episcopalian who has always doubted the divinity of Jesus. Call me irrational, but I find more inspiration in the historical Jeshua the Nazarene than the Jesus created by Paul, and later the Romans, to further personal agendas. Thus, this book amazed me. Told like a old-fashioned detective thriller, it presents its findings concisely and with conviction. As one reviewer notes, it is impossible to say whether or not the tomb in question held the remains of the actual Jeshua the Nazarene, but the theories are plausible, the evidence adds up, and for those of you who seek the Jesus of history, you may just find this title more inspiring than a church service.

9 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

Sure to stir up reactionaries

First, I am a Christian and inspite of the controversy over the book, my faith has not changed.Yes there is solid evidence presented here, but to me it just confirms Jesus lived and it fills in a lot of gaps. I think Science and Faith can work hand i hand.It's the reactionaries that can't see that. Although techchnically some of the info and facts presented were way over my head.Ultimately whether you believe in the resurection or not shouldn't change wit this book. I did like the voice of the reader..

7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Wanting more at the end.

I had a great deal of trepadation, whin I first started "The Jesus Family Tomb". My fears subsided as I moved through the book. I Find the information as credible. It's a good read. The auther takes time to help the reader to keep ones fath in the face of a paradime shift. If this book is read of listen to in one session, you will find some information, at the end, to be a little redundant.
I would not recomend "The Jesus Family Tomb" for the Christan that is unwilling to face what unrefuitable evidance.
This documary is smart. It respects the reader sceptisem. It speaks to the reader through facts, and does not ask for the reader to except the information on the basis athority but through evedance.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

Worth the read

I would recommend to those interested in this tomb's discovery. Two plots, if you want to call them plots, interested me. First, and foremost, is the presentation of the facts surrounding the tomb and the statistical analysis of the facts as known. Secondly the making of money on religious antiquities, this book and the accompanying Discovery channel presentation included. Both are reasonably well presented leaving the reader with food for thought.

I do have a problem with what I call the Discovery logic. A question is posed such as what if the favorite disciple is Jesus' son. Then a line of thought is proposed as if the original question is an agreed fact. This technique diminishes the ample subject matter with unnecessary tangents.

I have read articles that this story attacks Christianity. I found no such case.

Ciulla's narration is confusing in places as to who is speaking. Shifts from first person to third person are not accompanied by voice change. Accents used need some work.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Jacobovici is an odd duck

What did you like best about The Jesus Family Tomb? What did you like least?

Best: The "possibilites" what it might be. I am Jewish and do not believe in the divinity of jesus but I do know the IAA would not bring something like that out in the open if they did find it. Everything has to be done so as not to offend SO MANY people that archaeological research in the area is fraught with politics and political considerations.

Would you be willing to try another book from Simcha Jacobovici? Why or why not?

Sure

He has a unique reputation. Some of his documentaries have been amazing and led to real changes. Some have been a bit off kilter. I have watched his documentaries and while I find them to often be lacking in real concrete evidence I also realize that in Israel, concrete evidence for many things is pretty hard to come by.

Have you listened to any of Michael Ciulla’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No I have never heard him before but would certainly listen to him again.

Could you see The Jesus Family Tomb being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

Umm, no. It was made into a sort of documentary that was not that great but a movie??? NO

Any additional comments?

Interesting read. I would guess it might enrage some xians but it is really, in the end, just a theory. A good one I will say but just a theory.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Groundbreaking

First things first, you MUST have an open mind going into this book. Actually, that may even be unnecessary. "The Jesus Family Tomb" is so packed with both evidence AND statistics, if you do not finish this work convinced of the legitimacy of the findings presented, you are either inhumanly stubborn, a tree, or the Pope. Slam dunk for Simcha et al!

Additionally, this book should be read (or listened to) along with Dr. James Tabor's "The Jesus Dynasty." They really do go hand in hand, as Dr. Tabor was a key player in the Jesus Family Tomb. For a more in-depth historical analysis of Jesus, his family, and the early Church, please read "The Jesus Dynasty!"

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Compelling and Difficult to Debunk

Fascinated by the author’s account of Mary Magdalene and Jesus I dove into this book with a very open mind. I found the science, mathematics and logic to be much more compelling than in my first Simchat Jacobovici read while just as juicy. Knowing that it has been thoroughly “debunked“ I made a deep dive into those debunking nabobs. I was shocked to see the lack of intellectual depth in their arguments. Most lines of attack fell on the notion that Jesus couldn’t afford a crypt or whomever buried them didn’t use the nomenclature we would expect from the New Testament… Which wouldn’t be written for another 70 to 100 years! This book brings the beef and I have yet to find a satisfying debunker.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 03-08-18

One of the Best kept secrets of our time.

Having watched the dvd years ago which captured my imagination from start to finish, I found this audio book to be just as captivating and unbelievable. Its hard for the old pre programmed scholars and archaeologists to move beyond their fear based emotions and see what's staring them straight in the face. For me, there can be no more compelling evidence brought to light that can allow the wise and open minded ones to know beyond a doubt that this is the last resting place of Jesus and his family.

2 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • OL
  • 02-10-16

Headline grabbing sensationalism

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

As an amusing diversion, yes, but with caveats and warnings. Jacobovi is too eager to postulate radical theories than to actual prove them. Scholarship it ain't, entertainment it is.

What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

I wasn't surprised by the conclusions. Because Biblical archaeology is a battlefield to prove the historicity of scripture it gets twisted and distorted at every opportunity, and this book is an excellent example of the facts misrepresented to prove the unproven/unprovable.

What about Michael Ciulla’s performance did you like?

A good reading, but not edge of the seat stuff.

Do you think The Jesus Family Tomb needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

Yes, if it is a factual, scientific analysis of the evidence without spectacular off the wall conclusions - but that won't happen.

Any additional comments?

Simcha Jacobovici is journalist first and foremost, who has an amateur's interest in the Bible and archaeology. He is NOT a scholar. So he goes for spectacular headline-grabbing conclusions. What is a possibility on one page becomes a fact by the next page to support his thesis.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Dave
  • 09-20-19

brilliant

loved it.. just leaves me with more questions & more books to look up for future reading.

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