Chattanooga Indiana Jones
Chattanooga Indiana Jones
You liked the "indiana jones" movies---you may remember that the main character was a college professor and archaelogist.
That was fun!------but fictional!
Chattanooga has a real-life indiana jones who's now on an archaelogical dig in israel.
News 12's bill mitchell tells us about greg stevens, who is also a chaplain for the sheriff's department.
You may wonder how many careers greg stephens can work into one life-time.
This week he's taking part in an archaelogical dig at tel gezer near solomon's gate in jerusalem.
How did a ph.d former college professor, and trained chaplain with the hamilton county sheriff's department end up digging in the dirt?
Gregory stephens, ph.d, chattanooga "i've got a background in historical geography in biblical israel from days when i was in seminary.
That is what really drove my interest in going.
Prior to taking that course, i really had no interest in going."
Stephens has worked on several historical digs, but this one came about after renowned archaelogist , dr. paul wright of jerusalem university asked him join the group.
We wondered what it meant..not only to him, but his understanding and validation of ancient history.
Gregory stephens "archaelogy is really the bible's best friend.
Because you're constantly uh finding things that verify statements in the scriptures..that maybe academia has has denied...on purely academic grounds without archaelogical backgrounds."
After a life of ministry, teaching, and travels to the holy land, greg decided he wanted to become a chaplain back home in chattanooga.
He became a volunteer chaplain at the sheriff's department.
It required 130 hours of training and has kept him busy.
But dr. stephens relished the thought of doing what he's doing this week--seeking answers to the mysteries of the bible lands.
Sheriff jim hammond, hamilton co.
"i think its an honor for him to be invited by such a prestigious group as those scholars that have asked him to be part of the team."
After several trips to israel over the years, he felt taking part in a dig at an anchient site was an invitation he couldn't turn down.
But he's also dedicated to his chaplain's job.
Greg stephens "my personal interest in..
Ah..understanding the realities of what law enforcement officers deal with.
--on a day to day basis.
The stress they're under."
Greg stephens is now living two lives---and finding that they actually go hand in hand.
In chattanooga, bill mitchell news 12 now.
Next week bill mitchell and ashley henderson hope to talk to dr. stephens through skype from the archaelogical site.
He'll return to chattanooga at the end of next