WASHINGTON - National Geographic says the age of the 'Tomb of Christ' is about 1,700 years old which makes it much older than once thought.
The discovery was made after mortar samples that were taken last year after the tomb was opened for the first time in centuries were tested. The test results suggest the original holy site survived despite its destruction 1,000 years ago. Prior to the tests many questioned whether the site was the original site identified as the burial place 17 centuries ago.
"Up until now we had no scientific proof for the tomb surviving before a 1,000 A.D.," said Kristin Romey, archaeology editor with National Geographic.
"This is the original Roman shrine from when they first identified the tomb which means that it survived the destruction of the church," Romey said. "This has continuously been a site worshipped as the tomb of Jesus Christ for 1,700 years."
The National Geographic Museum recently debuted a brand new exhibit called 'Tomb of Christ: The Church of the Holy Sepulchre Experience.'
Users can wear 3D glasses to be virtually transported to Jerusalem's Church Of The Holy Sepulchre where Jesus was believed to have been buried. The 3D experience allows visitors to virtually walk inside the rotunda in the Church Of The Holy Sepulchre and the Tomb of Christ. Users can also view newly revealed cave walls that haven't been seen in centuries. The exhibit also includes a short 3D film.