Colo. (EP) — A Messianic Seal from the Christian church in ancient Jerusalem has been rediscovered after 2000 years.
This ancient symbol was found on Mount Zion. It is believed to have been created and used by the Jewish believers
who called themselves Nazarenes in the first Messianic Church.
Three companies—Olim Creative Products of Tiberias, News About Israel (NAI) of Jerusalem, and Christian Floral
Delivery of Colorado—jointly announced the discovery of this ancient symbol, which has been copyrighted by NAI.
It consists of three separate but integrated symbols: a menorah at the top, a star of David in the middle, and
a fish at the bottom. In each of the renditions of the three-part symbol the star is created by interlacing the
stand of the menorah with the fish.
The Messianic Seal was found etched or inscribed on eight ancient artifacts. The artifacts were presented to Ludwig
Schneider, editor in chief of NAI's magazine, Israel Today, in 1990. They came from Tech Otecus, an elderly monk
who lived as a hermit in the Old City of Jerusalem. Otecus said that in the1960s he had personally excavated about
40 artifacts bearing the Messianic Seal from an ancient grotto located in the immediate vicinity of the Upper Room
on Mount Zion.
What was once the main entrance to the grotto is now covered with a jail-like heavy wire mesh enclosure. Its door,
leading down into the ancient baptismal place, is tightly secured with a heavy chain and lock. According to Schneider,
the last remaining entry to the grotto was sealed shortly after he excitedly told the priests at the local monastery
about the discovery of the Messianic Seal.
Schneider photographed eight artifacts which were given to him by Otecus, and showed the pictures to the curator
of the Israel Museum. "When he had carefully studied my pictures," Schneider recalled, "the curator
immediately promised me that these artifacts and their unique symbol were an important find. He told me that the
museum had seen other artifacts bearing the same three-part symbol from some other sources he did not specify."
According to Bob Fischer, president of Olim Creative Products and co-author with local historian and artist Reuven
Schmalz of their book, The Messianic Seal of the Jerusalem Church, the ancient three-part symbol has, since 135
A.D., been suppressed by various Israeli groups or agencies, such as the Israel Museum and Orthodox rabbis in the
Old City of Jerusalem, while simultaneously being buried for these nearly two millennia by the church.
According to Fischer, at least two of the eight artifacts were obviously ceremonial pieces which may have well
been used by James the Just, the brother of Jesus, who is said to be the first pastor of the church, or perhaps
even by one or more of the Twelve Apostles.
One of the eight artifacts is a brick-sized block of well-worn local marble. This piece bears an etched version
of the Messianic
Seal with a Taw (the last letter in the ancient Hebrew alphabet that looks exactly like a sign of the cross) in
the eye of the fish symbol, as well as the ancient Aramaic lettering proclaiming the use of this artifact as a
stand to hold a vial of anointing oil. The ancient Aramaic is transliterated as, "La
Shemen Ruehon" (For the Oil of the Spirit). Another of the eight
artifacts is a small, almost intact, vial which could well have sat on top of the marble stand.
on what he characterized as the "monumental importance" of this archaeological discovery, Fischer said,
"Beyond the historical background of the Nazarenes, the first Jewish believers who founded the Jerusalem Church,
the Messianic Seal itself proclaims to the world the pervasive Jewishness of Jesus Christ and the decidedly Jewish
foundation and roots of the church founded in His name."
"The Messianic Seal of the Jerusalem Church," Fischer continued, "strikes
at the very roots of anti-Semitism while proclaiming a compelling message that restores unity: Jew with Jew, and
Jew with Gentile. The importance of this discovery cannot be minimized. The Messianic Seal is not only just the
key to understanding the Dead Sea Scrolls, it can and should shake the foundations of the church and orthodox Judaism
with its incredible message of unity and love. It breaks down barriers that have existed for millennia and points
the way toward restoration." —Evangelical Press News Service
To see a few more pictures and buy the book "The Messianic
Seal of the Jerusaelm Church"
- click Olim