Call it a modern day Raiders of the Lost Ark...well, not exactly. According to Pastor Mark Durrant he claims to have discovered the whereabouts of the Ark of the Covenant. Durrant supposedly discovered the current location of the Ark three weeks ago while reading his Bible, when he came across 1 Kings 8:8. It is in this passage that the story of the Ark being brought into Solomon's temple is told, and verse 8 states,
"And they drew out the staves, that the ends of the staves were seen out in the holy place before the oracle, and they were not seen without: and there they are unto this day." - KJV
"It was that last phrase that caught my attention" said Durrant. "The Bible says that the staves and the Ark "are there...unto this day. We take the Bible literally, and that means that to find the Ark of the Covenant all we have to do is go to Solomon's temple in Jerusalem and we'll find it."
Durrant's supposed "discovery" from the Bible passage is born out of a deep convicton that the Bible be taken literally without any historical/grammatical context. Durrant's church, Mt. Vernon Bible Believers Church, has lived by idea this for some time.
"We live by the Bible and the Bible alone, not by knowledge" said Durrant. "We don't need education and all kinds of Greek and stuff to understand the word. All this interpretation business is a bunch of foolishness. We just do what the Bible says."
Other interpretations include forbidding a woman to put her hair in a bun.
"We read in Matthew 27:17 where it says '...top not come down'" said Durrant, "and therefore a woman should have no knots in her hair, men too of course."
But Durrant's recent "discovery" of the Ark of the Covenant has prompted a whole list of new "discoveries." According to Durrant's interpretation of various "unto this day" passages, he claims to now know the location of the heap of stones raised over Achan in Joshua chapter 7, the stone upon which the Ark of the Covenant sat in 1 Samuel 6, and the location of the "field of blood" mentioned in Matthew 27:8.
"We're very excited about all of this" said Durrant. "My wife and I just got our plane tickets yesterday. We are headed to Israel at the end of the month to get some pictures of the Ark. According to the map in the back of my Scofield Bible, I should be able to find Solomon's temple pretty easily when I get there."
Durrant has sent his findings to the American Association of Archeologist but he has yet to hear back any response from them.
"Those snobs aren't interested in some serious Biblical study" said Durrant. "I'm trying to help them out here, but if they don't want to listen to me then I'll just enjoy finding the Ark myself."
While Durrant is looking forward to seeing the Ark he went on to say he had no plans to touch it for fear of being struck dead.