Claim: Oklahoma Government Officials to Lobby “Top People in Israel” on Behalf of Copper Scroll Treasure-Hunter

Jim West notes that Jim Barfield is in the process of re-designing his webpage, which now welcomes visitors with the following (sic for punctuation):

Welcome to the Copper Scroll Project. Jim Barfield has decoded one of the greatest Documents of our times. Read all about whats going on with the project right here!

I’ve blogged this nonsense before – the Copper Scroll is an anomalous document found with the Dead Sea Scrolls which claims to record the burial place of some treasure. It’s not written in code, although the instructions it gives are obscure; Barfield has not made public how he came to discern its true meaning, although he claims it has something to do with his skills as a professional arson investigator, and he assures us that those to whom he has explained it have been very impressed. He believes that the treasure consists of artefacts and gold from the First Temple (including perhaps the Ark of the Covenant), which is somewhat problematic as the scroll dates from centuries after the First Temple Period.

Barfield was at a dig in Israel a few months ago, much to the excitement of apocalyptic Christian Zionists (according to one enthusiast, “the amount of gold in this find could top trillions of dollars and my opinion on that is, that might be the spoil that brings Russia down to Israel for the gog and magog war”), but he has since returned to the USA empty-handed. It seems all is not well with his Israeli contacts:

Information and correspondence from Israel has stopped. Why, I can’t tell you, but my email has not been answered since we left Israel in May.

Robert Cargill has a good idea why, though, writing at Bible and Interpretation:

It seems that the Israel Antiquities Authority, who Barfield claims provided the permit for their excavation, has stopped returning their calls, and is no longer interested in working with them. Perhaps this is due to the fact that the Copper Scroll Project leaders have been making deliberately misleading claims about their role in the excavation. Or, perhaps it is due to a network of archaeologists, scholars, and bloggers working behind the scenes asking why the IAA would take money from posers like Barfield…Because Barfield has no say over the excavation, the IAA digs as they wish and where they wish, and allow Barfield and company only to observe the excavation and report their findings to the public. That was, at least, until the IAA saw the claims Barfield was making. It appears the IAA now wants nothing to do with the Copper Scroll Project, fearing perhaps that their association with a fringe, prophecy-obsessed group of Messianic Christians with no archaeological experience might harm the department’s credibility. Perhaps this is the reason that the Copper Scroll Project’s April 26, 2009 YouTube update overdubs the name of the IAA “archaeologist” they claim was assisting them in the original update.

But all is not lost – Barfield also has government contacts in his home state of Oklahoma:

This update was to have been posted today, the 30th of June, but I had a meeting with some government officials from about 2:00pm till about 4:00pm this afternoon and I wanted to be able to tell all of you about the results. The meeting was to disclose to them the information of how to understand the Copper Scroll and where the first and last five locations on the scroll are located. Guess what? They liked it! And.they are willing to write letters to the top people in Israel and significant persons here in the US to help complete the excavation we started in April of this year.

These are doubtless the same Oklahoma senators who received Barfield before he set out. Barfield apparently addressed twelve senators in the State Capitol, and in a video he claimed that they had promised to find funding for his project. Alas, Barfield named no names, but it should be remembered that the Oklahoma legislature includes such characters as Sally Kern, who believes (among much else) that students who subscribe to Creationism should not be penalized by teachers if they give Creationist answers to science questions. This video was made before his trip to Israel:

7 Responses

  1. […] although he’s not giving away the secret. Barfield managed to get a hearing from some credulous state senators, and he accompanied an Israeli exhibition, although that does not appear to have ended well. […]

  2. […] here and on steven smuts’ blog here and here and on richard bartholomew’s blog here and here and here and here and on….. well, you get the […]

  3. […] Price should have a word with those unnamed Oklahoma government officials who have supposedly been so helpful to Jim Barfield’s hunt for the Copper Scroll […]

  4. […] declared that this was a further sign of God’s favour towards modern Israel. Barfield also reportedly gave a presentation to a group of Oklahoma state senators, who agreed to support his efforts with […]

  5. […] hacks lapped the story up, with puff pieces on local media and in the Jerusalem Post. Barfield also reportedly gave a presentation to a group of Oklahoma state senators, who agreed to support his efforts with […]

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