Acts 1 – Archaeology and the Upper Room


Reading Acts

In his Acts commentary Clint Arnold says archaeologists have recovered several Herodian homes near the Tomb of David, one of which is the traditional site of the upper room (ZIBBC, 11). I visited this room on my first trip to Israel in 2005 and recall being unimpressed. Although I was skeptical at the time, there is at least a possibility that the location known as the Cenacle today is built on top of the site of the original upper room. The Latin word cena means dinner, so the place is the “dining room.”

The Cenacle Today The Cenacle Today

The evidence for this is an exercise in archaeology but also in traditional locations of holy sites in Israel.  Jerome Murphy-O’Connor has argued the location of the Cenacle in Jerusalem ought to be seriously considered as evidence for the location of a Jewish-Christian congregation in the second century.

The Cenacle is a building…

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