Tag Archives: Korazin

A First Century Synagogue at Chorazin?

Many visitors to Israel will visit Chorazin which is located about 2.3 miles north of ancient Capernaum on the north shore of the Sea of Galilee. Chorazin is mentioned two times in the New Testament (Matt 11:21; Luke 10:13) and in both cases it, along with Bethsaida are cursed for their lack of belief in Jesus. The text implies that miracles were performed there, and most have assumed that Jesus would have ministered in a synagogue there as well.

The reconstructed 4th-6th century synagogue at Chorazin.

When visiting the 4th-6th century synagogue at Chorazin, typically the question is asked “where is the synagogue that Jesus preached in?” Up until two years ago, the answer was, “we don’t know.”

Recently I came across a YouTube video by “Sergio & Rhoda in Israel” entitled “Lifting the ancient floor of the cursed city of Chorazin.” It was posted on September 27, 2020 (during the “heart” of the pandemic), and features the excavations led by Achia Cohen-Tavor in the synagogue and elsewhere at Chorazin. The whole video is worth watching (23 minutes long) but for those pressed for time, the work on the synagogue begins around 9:15. There are great images, drone shots, and expert commentary by Achia. He believes, based upon excavations below the floor of the late synagogue that he has found first century A.D. remains: pottery sherds and coins.

An important 23-minute video. The portion regarding the excavation of the synagogue begins at 9:30.

There appear to be a few referals to this video on the internet, but I have not seen any official reports of this discovery and would appreciate any references to official reports.

The interior of the synagogue where the excavation took place.

For additional images of the synagogue see Here. For the remainder of the site of Chorazin see Here.

The synagogue before excavation in 1967 on a field trip led by the late Anson Rainey — in the hat above the center of the image.