Ruins found in Nazareth could be Jesus’ childhood home

Ruins found in Nazareth could be Jesus’ childhood home

A British archaeologist thinks he has found the childhood home of Jesus in Nazareth.

Ken Dark began surveying the site about 14 years ago when he was studying the Israeli town’s history as a Byzantine Christian pilgrimage center, the Jerusalem Post reported.

“I didn’t go to Nazareth to find the house of Jesus…,” Dark, a professor at University of Reading, told the BBC. “Nobody could have been more surprised than me.”

Archaeologists in the 19th century were the first to suggest that Jesus and his parents, Mary and Joseph, had lived in the home, but researchers in the 1930s discredited the notion, the Post reported.

Dark found the dwelling, under the Byzantine-era Sisters Of Nazareth Convent in central Nazareth, by researching the archives and artifacts from earlier digs, and recording excavated evidence unearthed again during work on a 1950s concrete floor, he told the Post.

What his study showed was a house carved into a rocky hillside, built by a master stoneworker. In the Bible, Joseph is called a “tekton,” an ancient word for craftsman, the Post reported.

A decade ago, British-Israeli archaeologist Yardenna Alexandre excavated a site near the location that Dark examined. She uncovered ruins of a house that probably was in the village where Jesus grew up.

Now, Alexandre wants to go with Dark to the location he researched so she can fully understand how he reached his conclusion. But she told the Post scientists would have to carry out a new dig near the convent to accurately date the ruins.

And Dark made clear he can’t be 100% positive about his finding.

“On the one hand, we can put forward a totally plausible case that this was Jesus’s childhood home.” he told CBS News. “But on the other hand, actually proving that is beyond the scope of the evidence. It’s debatable whether it would ever be possible to prove that.”