The Washington Post from Washington, District of Columbia on January 6, 1918 · Page 5
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The Washington Post from Washington, District of Columbia · Page 5

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Sunday, January 6, 1918
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0 EXPLORE AT LAST THE LTOL Y PLACES OF MMmT ySf WssM irefffW - r as - S m afis limv MOc - 35S F7 Saviours Body Be Found in a Hidden Tomb Under the Rock of OmarfWill the Lost Books of the Kings Be Discovered in the Sealed Catacombs f Will Exploration Reveal Scene of the Last Supper The Sealed Golden Gate of Jerusalem Closed by the Mohammedans to Bar Legend Says the Saviour Return The Remains of the Antonia the Roman Citadel in Which the Saviour Was Brought Before Pontius Pilate for Trial Ruins Near the Pool Reputed by Ancient Legend to Be Those of the Virgin Marys House in Jerusalem Jerusalem as It Is Today Viewed From the Jaffa Gate Showing the Ruins of Herods Palace in the Foreground and the Massive City Walls A Photograph of the HoliestSpot in the Church of - the Holy Sepulcher Jerusalem At the Right Is the Sarooph agus Which Has Remained Sealed for Centuries and That Can Now Be Reverently Opened 4 THE capture of Jerusalem from the barbarous infidel Turks by the British forces is one of the most signifi - i ant events morally of the great world war The Holy City is at last in the possession of the civilized races Christian and Jew to whom it rightfully belongs Thus It now becomes possible to explore and examine freely the sacred sites such as the Holy Sepulcher and the Temple - of Solomon - which hold first place in the hearts of devout Christians and Jews and which re been ith brief intervals in toe possession of infidels and a - ages for 2000 years The Rev Dr W C Endly a distinguished Bible scholar and prominent Methodist minister of Cleveland Ohio who has just returned from a long visit of research to Jerusalem explained especially for the benefit of readers of this newspaper the most important problems which he believed would be solved by the capture of the Holy - City The modern mind can scarcely grasp the inexpressible importance of the opportunity to excavate beneath Jerusalem and the Tyro - poen Valley which traverses the lty said Dr Endly Beneath the present cities of Jerusalem Nazareth Hebron and Bethlehem there is written in stone and in debris a history of the world that begins where our traditions end There we shall find when our archaeologists flock there with their picks and shovels the link that connects us of today ith the times ofthe living Sav iour lhere is nothing so infinite its possibilities in its richness of wonders mjteries and knowledge except the contemplation of Heaven itself as the prospect of an exploration of the very valley hrough which the Saviour walked and w orked The most important discovery we shall make in my belief will be the resurrection of the lost books of the Bible Throughout the Scriptures there are references to other books especially Books of Kings wnicb can not e traced because the boos xelerren to have disappeared Important history of Biblical times is contained in these lost books Why they weie hidden and by whom we do not know and perhaps never will but we do know almost positively that they are secreted somewhere beneath the streets and houses of the Jerusalem or the Nazareth or the Bethlehem of today When they are found the fabric of Christianity will be complete Hscrepancies made so much of by the skeptics which now form much of the discussion of the Bible will be removed when these lost books are found There are many references many statements in the Bible which we now must accept without being able to reason them out They are the so - called flaws of which so much is made These will be explained away justified and proven when the lost books are found What will be the sensations of that excavator who when he carefully feels with his fingers where his pick or spade has touched a hidden stone realizes that his hands are in contact with a part of the Bible itself The Tomb of the Saviour It is possible the very body of f he Saviour Himself may be discovered There is considerable doubt as to whether the ancient Jews embalmed the bodies of their dead but there are authorities who con - - end that they did so preserve the jodies of the greatest men If the Saviours body was embalmed it will be found in the lost tomb Where this tomb is now is a mystery It is not believed by many modern scholars that it is under neath the Church of Sepulcher where for years it was thought to be It may be under the Rock of Omar the site of the Temple Only exploration will determine this but it is certain that the Saviour was buried under the then city of Jerusalem in the tomb of Joseph of Arimathea and this will be identified by its inscription The road to Calvary will be traced Already we know where this road began Its rock floor has been uncovered and the stones upon which Christ was scourged have been identified The Mohammedans have prevented Christian footsteps from following the course of the road but the way now is open The location of Calvary always has been shrouded in mystery but the site of the Crucifixion now will be determined and devout souls once more may stand on the spot where Christ gave up His life Undoubtedly we shall unearth writings by the Saviour in His own hand He made many writings of this there is no doubt but so far none have been discovered It is probable that He may have traced on stone for preservation some dedication of a temple or holy place or made some commandment to be left where all future generations might read it What a wonderful thing it will be for the eyes of this generation to look upon the actual handwriting of their Saviour The early years of the Saviour are a mystery to us We know only that He lived out in the country until He was thirty years old We have a reference in the Scriptures of His visiting the Temple when He was twelve years old What manner of life did He live all these years7 What were the influences being brought to bear upon Him and by Him that gathered glory for the dawn of Christianity Who were His teachers What were His teachings All this will be revealed when we go under the surface of the valley from Bethlehem to Hebron and under the city itself for here we shall find the record ot the Saviours youth ahography - which - wU complete our knowledge of the gathering and the assembly of the great forces which later left their indelible impress upon the world for all time A Tragedy and a Romance The history of Jerusalem is a tragedy and a romance without parallel in literature Seventy years after the Saviour was crucified there it was besieged by the Romans under Titus who enraged at the resistance they encountered massacred all the inhabitants The Romans destroyed the entire city with the exception of a few buildings connected with their rtile and built a new one upon its ruins The arrogant pagans constructed over the site of the Holy Sepulcher a temple devoted to the Impious rites of Venus and Jupiter and all the sacred places were desecrated or disregarded In this cruel age Christians and Jews could only worship in secret and struggled hard for existence Two centuries later the Christian religion began to gain predominance through the Roman empire The good Empress Helena afterward St Helena mother of Con - Stantine the Great became a Christian She made it the glory of her life to locate and honor the sacred places of Christianity in Jerusalem and she founded churches upon the traditional sites This work was begun about the year 326 when Helena herself went to Jerusalem For a few centuries the city enjoyed peace and splendor but the decline of the Roman empire brought disaster to it In 614 it was sacked by the Persians It was retaken by the Ro - h H o Ml 11 I III lllli lli liR rlHHEHliU f jvJHBI KHnfiSttA wiH HSfiiH iillIBll M8 f v ii iiiiiiiiiiiiiM THE FIRST OPENING OF THE SEPULCHER An Artists Conception of the Miracle of the SaviourTs Resurrection Shall We Now Iarn What Lies Within This Tomb And for fear of Him the keepers did shake and became as dead men St Matthew eh 28 v Painting by J L Gerome Copyright by Lucien Layus Seven Great Mysteries Which Now May Be Solved By the Rev Dr W C Endly D D I EVEN of Christianitys greatest mys teries which undoubtedly will be solved by excavation beneath the Holy City are THE BURIAL PLACE OF THE SAV IOUR The tomb with the Body I be lieve may be unearthed and identified by its ornaments or tablets under the Rock of Omar THE LOST BOOKS OF THE KINGS They reveal the history of the Israelites from the very creation Possibly they too are hidden in the catacombs under the Temple Rock 1 2 4 5 6 3 THE STORY OP THE SAVIOURS YOUTH There is some belief that the tablets on which this precious record is written and which will supply even greater proof than we now possess of Christs divinity will be found near His tomb AUTHENTIC WRITINGS OF CHRIST There is no doubt that at some time in His earthly residence Christ took occasion to write with His own hands a message for later generations on a tablet of stone THE DISPOSITION OF THE CROSS There is some belief that the true Cross is buried underneath the Church of the Holy Sepulcher but it is also said that it was carried away and stored in a secret cave near the outskirts of the city THE BIRTHPLACE OF THE SAVIOUR AT BETHLEHEM The existing shrine and certain other possible sites will be examined 7 HOME OF THE SAVIOUR AT NAZARETH Many vestiges of the Saviours life may be found in this village and the vicinity man Emperor of the East in 62S but fell in 637 to the Saracen Omar Then for centuries it suffered under a succession of Mohammedan Oriental conquerors In 1099 the Crusaders aroused by the accounts of the persecutions of the Christians and the desecration of the holy places set forth In vast armies and captured the city They sought out the holy sites established in Helenas time and rebuilt or restored the churches above them Many of these buildings remain today much as the Crusaders left them In 1244 the Crusaders were driven out and from that time until its recent capture the Holy City has never ceased to be in the possession of the Mohammedans It is a significant fact that during all the oppression extermination and pillage to which Jerusalem has been subjected the memory of the holy places has never been entirely lost No matter how fanatical the ruling infidel power might be there were always poor people living in or around the city who could say that this spot was worshiped by their fathers as the scene of the Saviours burial and that spot as the site of Solomons Temple It would seem as many believe that a divine power had preserved the memory of these places And now after all these years scholars can examine the holy sites reverently but intelligently find what lies beneath them and consider all the evidence concerning them Perhaps the greatest and most wonderful of all the mysteries that may be unravelled in Jerusalem is this What lies within the great sarcophagus in the Church of the Holy Sepulcher Is this the authentic Tomb or is it to be found elsewhere Is it empty as customary religious teaching would have us believe or is it possible that there is a body there preserved by ancient Oriental methods of embalming No one has ever been permitted to look within It as far as the records show Destroyed by the Persians The Rev Dr Endly has already expressed the view that the Sav - ioufs Tomb containing perhaps the Body may be found beneath the Rock of Omar Other authorities hold very different views The actual tomb in the Church of the Holy Sepulcher was established as the burial place of the Saviour on abundant evidence in the time of the Empress Helema about 326 Some modern archaeologists have argued that the real scene of the Crucifixion and Entombment was outside the present Damascus Gate of Jerusalem but the question has certainly never been settled Two great buildings were erected near each other on the scene of the Crucifixion in St Helenas time The Mount of Calvary according to these early writers was not inclosed in the basilica It stood just at the southeast side of the apse These buildings were destroyed by the Persians in 614 but the Crusaders in rebuilding them followed their original lines to a great extent and today they remain much as they left them Biblical scholars hold that the accounts of the Saviours Crucifixion and Burial in the Gospels cannot prove definitely where they occurred The Gospels narrate that He was taken to a place called Calvary or Golgotha which was a customary place of execution among the Jews to be crucified As to the burial we know from the Gospels that Joseph of Arimathea took the body and laid It in a rock tomb wherein never was man laid before St Luke Chapter 23 verse 53 Consideration of all the circumstances indicates that the tomb was In the immediate vicinity of the place of Crucifixion Ancient Jewish laws and customs give certain indications concerning the place of Crucifixion It must have been outside the city wall One expert says it was at a considerable distance from the Temple so that no noises from the rabble could reach the sacred in - closure Under the Jews before the Roman conquest thp method of execution was by stoning and the place was called the House ofr Stoning Two witnesses stood on a little hill the height of two men and cast the first stones at the condemned man who stood below them The rest of the people then threw stones at the condemned until he was dead When the Romans took charge of public executions the ancient Hebrew custom was still recognized to the extent of permitting the two witnesses to throw two stones at the condemned Therefore It is argued the place of Crucifixion must have included a hillock rising above the platform of the cross Colonel Conder of the Palestine Exploration Fund one of the best known archaeologists in this field fixed on a hill about 2000 feet north of the present Damascus Gate of Jerusalem as fulfilling the topographical requirements Found an Empty iTomb Conder also contended that the tomb was probably in the side of a cliff near this hill Close by is a spot known for ages as Jeremiahs Grotto More recent authorities have decided that there is at least as much evidence in favor of the traditional site 1 e the ancient Church of the Holy Sepulcher as of Conders site The question turns largely upon the situation of the city wall in the time of the Saviour Conder fixed upon his site because it was outside the present city wall but investigations indicate that the Church of the Holy Sepulcher stands outside what was the city wall at the time of the Crucifixion For many reasons it would be Intensely interesting to have a thorough examination both of the interior and exterior of the Holy Sepulcher The Gospels tell us that Pilate set watchers to guard the tomb lest the Saviours Disciples should take the body away On the third day an angel rolled away the stone that sealed the tomb while the watchers were stricken helpless with fear They found an empty tomb Then the Gospel narrative describes the miracle of the Ascension when the Saviour ascended into Heaven in the presence of the Disciples Some modern commentators have argued that the accounts of the Resurrection and Ascension should be understood not literally but in a symbolical sense An examination of the interior of the Sepulcher would have an evident bearing on this contention Many of the traditional holy places in Jerusalem are extremely puzzling because the same occurrence is associated with different places No investigation to ascertain the facts has ever been permitted by the Mohammedans For instance there is an ancient building called the Coena - culum by Christians and Nebi Daud or Tomb of David by the Mohammedans The present structure was built in the Crusad - ing period and commemorated the house in which the Last Supper occurred Its - upper story represented the upper chamber of the Last Supper and the lower story or crypt was supposed to be the place where the Holy Ghost - descended upon the Apostles at Penijbcost This tradition was held in the time of St Helena and a large church commemorated the site Id that early age Ercvatfaa af tte sgat will very probably show whether the tomb of David or a tomb ot his age ever existed here and may throw light on the credibility of the tradition that the Last Supper was held in a building in this site Conflict of Traditions The conflict of these traditions is illustrated by the fact that another extremely ancient building in the city Is also known as the tomb ot David It is a tower identified by Col Conder as the Tower of Hippicus which is described by Josephus and formed part of the great citadel of King Herod It is extremely interesting because it Is one of the few buildings still above ground In Jerusalem which existed before the Romans destroyed the city in A D 70 This also is credited by another tradition with being the place where the Last Supper was held and it has the advantage of having existed in apostolic times It is of course possible that the tomb of David lies beneath - this tower Other places where it Is thought possible the tomb of the founder of the Jewish monarchy may be discovered are beneath the Sakhrah or Sacred Rock on which Solomon built his temple or among a group of - ancient Jewish tombs north of Jerusalem Another important building of Gospel times left standing in Jerusalem is the Antonia This was the palace of Herod and the seat of Roman government It was here that the Saviour was brought before Pontius Pilate for trial While the building has been greatly altered and deformed during - centuries it remains substantially as it was in Pilates time It was until recently used as a Turkish barracks Its walls and foundations Bhould reveal many interesting facts of Biblical times It - might be possible to Identify the common hall in which the soldiers crowned the Saviour with thorns Does any portion of the True Cross remain in Jerusalem - A through investigation of the holy places is likely to throw some light upon this subject of absorbing interest Ancient chronicles state that Bishop Macarius of Jerusalem in the time of St Helena discovered three crosses at the spot now venerated near the Church of the Holy Sepulcher He ascertained which one of the three was the True Cross by touching each one to a sick woman The third healed her miraculously Fragments of the Cross have been traced to various parts of the world but the complete history of this most sacred relic is far from being known What Are the Secrets What secrets He concealed beneath the great Sealed Golden Gate that once gave admittance to the temple area According to popular legends the Mohammedan conquerors sealed this gate from fear that a sovereign from the West would some day enter this way According to another legend Christ will return by this gate to judge the city The early Mohammedan leaders were often crafty men and It is considered probable that they - concealed treasures and relics within the chambers and vaults of this intricate gateway and trusted to the terrifying influences of the legends to protect them from intruders What is the history of the extremely ancient House of the Virgin Mary whose ruins stand near the reputed Tomb of David The only suggestion in the Gospels that the Virgin ever lived In Jerusalem is the statement that the Saviour commended her to the Disciples before the Crucifixion and that the Beloved Dis - clnle took her to live vrlth Wa tamily St laUnevr CnaptCT 26 yerse For centuries ihte tas been known as the Virgins House Investigation may now reveal some proof that this was actually occupied by the Saviours Mother Of absorbing - interest will be the search for remains of the pre - Christian Biblical period beneath the soil of Jerusalem What maybe expected beneath the foundations of the Temple of Solomon which Is now covered by the Mosque of Omar Many ancient writers have stated that the entire mountain upon which the temple once stood is honeycombed with - tunnels and secret chambers In which much may still He concealed It Is believed thai when Jeru - I salem was about to fall before the victorious arms of the Romans led by Titus A D 70 the priests and those connected with the Temple hastened to conceal in these subterranean chambers everything that was easily transportable especially the contents of the Holy of Holies to prevent their falling into the hands of the destroying Romans If they did what we suppose they would naturally have carried out the Ark of the Covenant which had been borne all through the Wilderness and deposited In this inner chamber when the temple was completed In that Ark was one relic of the past which if rediscovered now would stand forth as ot tremendous Importance The original tablets bearing the Ten Commandments as sculptured In the stone by the hand of Moses Tvere deposited in the Art of the CONTINUED ON SIXTH TAGE v - g - a s tHtV j Xfz - fritpiyt - ft - J we y - - y - - sJS - irifis a trJL A v srr - S3 I - - - Vfe

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