Archaeological Experts Deceived by a Fake

On March 1, the Israel Antiquities Authority announced the discovery of an ostracon (an inscribed potsherd) featuring the words in Aramaic “Year 24 of Darius” (498 BC). This was announced with much fanfare and media focus as the first written evidence of Darius the Great found in Israel. The ostracon was discovered in the ruins of Lachish by Eylon Levy, adviser to Israel President Isaac Herzog. He turned it over to the Antiquities Authority and the piece was examined for some weeks by the advanced Analytical Laboratory under direction of Saar Ganor of the Israel Antiquities Authority and Dr. Haggai Misgav of the Hebrew University. Finally, Levy received the following statement from Ganor: “We’ve put it through three scanners. This is authentic. No modern hand could do it, and it’s from two and a half thousand years ago, from before the story of Purim.” Yet it turns out that the ostracon was created in August 2022 by a teacher of archaeology as a visual aid to a group of students at Lachish and was left behind accidentally. This is an important reminder of the fallibility of the highest scientific experts. Man’s science is not infallible and should never be an absolute authority. In fact, man’s science, including archaeology, is shot through and through with the gross error of Darwinian evolution (i.e., the myth of the big bang, natural selection, long ages, the stone age).

(Friday Church News Notes, March 10, 2023,, 866-295-4143)