FORT WORTH, Texas (BP) -- Type "Dead Sea Scrolls" into the search bar and Google presents 29 pages of images related to the ancient documents. Stick the 1998 animated film "The Prince of Egypt" into the DVD player and DreamWorks presents its rendition of Bible times in the Near East.
In The Exhibit:
-- Murals of Dead Sea region
-- Artifacts such as coins, pottery and sandals
-- Replica Wailing Wall
-- Authentic Bedouin tent
-- Tent from Qumran dig site
-- Scroll stylus and ink well
-- Replica of Cave 4
-- Dead Sea Scroll fragments and other manuscripts
-- Dead Sea Scrolls film
-- iScroll kiosks
-- Portion of St. John's Bible
-- Early Bibles and texts
-- Gift shop
-- Interactive dig site
For many Christians, the eastern lands where God spoke to Abraham, where God led the Israelites to freedom, and where Jesus was born, lived, died and rose again may just as well exist only in the events' respective time periods. Hindered by vacation time, finances, or other responsibilities, millions of people cannot visit the desert surrounding the Dead Sea. For some, Google and DreamWorks may offer the closest access they may ever have to the lands the patriarchs crisscrossed by sandaled foot.
Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary hopes to change that reality and give more people than ever a chance to see manuscripts that reveal the faithful transmission of the biblical texts over thousands of years through its Dead Sea Scrolls & the Bible exhibition, which will run from July 2012 to January 2013.
Organizers expect to see more than 400,000 people visit the exhibit during its six-month run at the seminary's MacGorman Chapel and Performing Arts Center.
Weston Fields, guest curator for the Dead Sea Scrolls & the Bible exhibition and executive director of the Dead Sea Scrolls Foundation, said that while the ancient scroll fragments do not "prove" the Bible is true, they prove, more or less, that the Bible Christians use today, including 66 books from Genesis to Revelation, is the Bible God intended Christians to have, even thousands of years after He first inspired its writing.
"What I try to get people to understand is, there is a prior question to the 'Is the Bible true?' question, and that is, 'Is what we have the Bible?'" Fields said. ... Read More