We’ve chosen Gezer as our dig location! Check out the dig website here.
Gezer is an significant site located in the Shephelah of Judah. It guarded the western end of the Aijalon Valley and the important road leading up from the coast toward Jerusalem. Solomon received it as a gift from the king of Egypt, and fortified it along with Hazor and Megiddo (1 Kings 9:15).
There are a number of good digs to choose from in Israel. We’ve chosen Gezer for a few reasons. First, the dig director, Steve Ortiz is willing to open up housing for our entire family. This is very important. This means that I will be able to see Julie and the children each evening without a long commute back into Jerusalem. Second, Nathan will be able to participate: they are going to let him dig too! He’s very excited as you can imagine. Finally, this dig is supported by a consortium of schools who fund the dig and send students to help do archaeological work. In exchange, the dig provides a field school and a fantastic experience for our students. Many of those schools are theologically similar to Emmaus and they are looking for additional members. There is interest in starting an archaeology minor at the college and this Gezer consortium might be a very nice fit for us. Of course it will cost money to get the program off the ground. If you’re interested in helping this effort contact me. After this summer I’ll have lots more details! Can you imagine a generation of Christ loving, church focused, young men and women who can defend their faith in a unique way because they have real archaeological experience? I can. That would be an unforgettable Emmaus experience!