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This issue of Bible and Spade is devoted in part to helping people appreciate the painstaking work of a careful, scientific approach to archaeology, using ABR's dig at Khirbet el-Maqatir as an example. Gary Byers begins with a look back at the 2011 dig season, when progress was made in better understanding several facets of the complex history of Khirbet el-Maqatir, as well as what the dig results lead us to anticipate during the 2012 Excavation Season. In another article, Dr. Bryant Wood explains the nature and significance of an infant jar burial discovered at the site in 2009. Dr. Scott Stripling summarizes and catalogues coin discoveries at the Khirbet el-Maqatir Monastery, and how they are interpreted.

Looking beyond Khirbet el-Maqatir, the significance of city gates in the Bible is discussed by Don McNeeley, where he shows that a close reading of Scripture passages brings to light details that a superficial reading often overlooks. Finally, Gordon Franz takes us into a deep consideration of Revelation 3:14-22, showing how knowing the historical background of Laodicea and the pertinent findings of archaeology add greatly to our appreciation of the passage.

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