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Researchers give exclusive look at what's believed to be Christ's tomb

Posted November 3

Scientists have finally decided to offer the world a look inside what’s often considered to be the tomb of Jesus Christ.

This spot, inside the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in the Old City of Jerusalem, has been around since at least 1555 A.D., though theories suggest it’s been around for a lot longer.

In an exclusive piece for National Geographic, scientists show off the site, one that may require more scientific analysis.

"The marble covering of the tomb has been pulled back, and we were surprised by the amount of fill material beneath it,” Fredrik Hiebert, archaeologist-in-residence at the National Geographic Society, a partner in the restoration project, said to National Geographic. “It will be a long scientific analysis, but we will finally be able to see the original rock surface on which, according to tradition, the body of Christ was laid."

As the report goes, it’s believed that Christ’s body was laid in a burial bed inside a limestone cave after he suffered crucifixion in A.D. 30 to 33. Christians believe Christ was resurrected and left the cave, leaving no remains behind.

Researchers told National Geographic that the burial shelf is now inside the burial site. It’s also going under reconstruction after a 19th century fire damaged the area around it.

"We are at the critical moment for rehabilitating the Edicule," National Technical University of Athens professor Antonia Moropoulou said to National Geographic. "The techniques we're using to document this unique monument will enable the world to study our findings as if they themselves were in the tomb of Christ."

You can read more about those findings over at National Geographic.

Herb Scribner is a writer for Deseret Digital Media.

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