They were the greatest archaeological find of the century. Apparently that was last century. Now, it seems, nobody wants the Dead Sea Scrolls. Brigham Young University and Salt Lake City officials had planned to display the ancient fragments during the 2002 Olympics, but decided it was too expensive to pay for transportation and security. It was only the latest rejection of the manuscripts.
In July, New Zealand's Auckland Museum told the Israel Antiquities Authority the scrolls were "too esoteric" to justify the costs. The museum went instead with a body art exhibit displaying biker mags, photos of genital piercings, and bondage gear.
The New Zealand Herald has an article on the Auckland Museum's decision and an editorial decrying it.
The Associated Press and Deseret News have articles on the cancelled Dead Sea Scrolls display in Salt Lake City.
Christian History managing editor Elesha Coffman visited the travelling exhibit when it came to Chicago's Field Museum.
Evangelical scholars have been using the Dead Sea Scrolls to demonstrate the reliability of the Scriptures, Kevin D. Miller wrote in a 1997 Christianity Today article. He also wrote an article on what we've learned from the Dead Sea Scrolls for sister publication Christian Reader.
The online version of an exhibit at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. describes the historical context of the scrolls, how they were found, and the Qumran community from whence they may have originated.
The Project Judaica Foundation has been a closely cooperating partner with the Israel Antiquities Authority to exhibit the scrolls.
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