With all the information there is to absorb about the Bible, it can sometimes seem overwhelming.
But the Museum of the Bible makes it easy with engaging exhibits displaying key artifacts and historical accounts arranged to provide a comprehensive understanding of the world’s bestselling book.
Item by item, and text by text, you can explore a side of the Bible that you have never experienced before.
Here’s a floor-by-floor guide to planning your family’s trip.
Opening in November of 2017, the 430,000 square foot Museum of the Bible has caused countless people to interact with the Bible like never before.
Five floors of innovative exhibits enhance perspective on an ancient text, making the Bible relevant to the common man.
You will have to keep yourself from drooling, as mouths gape at the stimulating environment once you enter the museum’s grand hall.
Large Jerusalem stone columns line the main walkway directing your eyes to the 40-foot-high, 140-foot-long LED lit ceiling that displays rotating images of art and sky scenes.
1. Beginning the Journey
On the first floor, there is enough to keep the whole family entertained for the morning, but you will have to remember to pace yourself in order to see everything.
You will come to the “Vatican Museum” and “Vatican Library” exhibit first, seeing manuscripts that have remained well-kept treasures.
At the end of the first floor is “Courageous Pages”, the kid-focused interactive exhibit. Your children can test their strength by pushing down the columns like Sampson, aim their stones at Goliath like David, and experience walking on water like Peter.
2. Second Level of Surprises
Head up to the second floor, either by the elaborate staircase or elevator, to explore “The Impact of the Bible” exhibit that showcases all the ways the Bible has influenced aspects of American culture. It looks at fashion, literature, music, and more, with artifacts to emphasize the impact.
“The Bible Now” interactive tool gives the user Bible data on the selected area, giving insight into the areas of the world that have a need for more of God.
You may be surprised to see all the places reached with the Bible over the years.
If you are interested in a more in-depth description of the Bible’s influence on American culture, there are tours available daily at an additional cost.
They discuss how the most well-known book in the world has had its hand in major events, as well as guiding views of prominent figures.
3. Third Floor Is Sure To Amaze
Going up to the third floor, there is so much to see, you may want to break for lunch before beginning the journey.
These exhibits aim to immerse you right into the scenes of the famous biblical scripts.
“The Hebrew Bible Experience” may have a line, but it will definitely be well worth the wait. Walking through this 30-minute stimulation of the senses you will see the stories of Noah’s Ark, the burning bush, and Passover with state-of-the-art effects that captivate you from beginning to end.
Then walk over to one of Jesus’ old stomping grounds, where you will feel like you have fallen down the rabbit hole into first-century Nazareth. You will see how wine was made, food was collected, and locals conducted themselves. Tours are available upon reservation, where you will hear about how Jesus’ followers became a community.
“The New Testament Theatre” is a 270-degree movie theatre that chronicles the promise of a great nation to Abraham to the Followers of Jesus. Stunning visual effects bring a new take on an old story, keeping the attention of adults and children alike.
4. Fourth Floor Of Wonder
The fourth floor is a Bible Scholar’s fantasy land with a history of the world’s greatest Bible artifacts, including “P39,” one of the oldest papyrus fragments of the Gospel of John.
A fun exhibit next door to the ancient manuscripts is one the kids may find a little more enjoyable, a “Drive Through with Dave Stotts,” hearing him tell about all the places in the Bible. You will be taken away while being captivated by the exciting descriptions he gives while showing the land where it all took place.
Check out the shelves of every Bible translation known, admiring the efforts of all involved to see that the Word of God gets to all the nations. Then see the beautiful rotating exhibits of artifacts from the Israel Antiquities Authority.
5. Fifth Floor Is Full Of Treasures
On the last floor is the 472 seat theatre that brings performances and speakers in from all over the world.
If an event is not scheduled you can begin with “The People Of The Land” exhibit, where the Israel Antiquities Authority show how their discoveries have shed light on life in ancient Israel.
A newer exhibit, “Pilgrim Preacher: Billy Graham, the Bible, and the Challenges of the Modern World” take you on a journey to get you to know the religious icon Billy Graham, and his life as it was influenced by the Bible, with rare footage, artifacts, and photographs.
A new attraction that is available is “Jerusalem and Rome: Cultures in Context in the First Century CE.” Worth every penny, this exhibit educates you on the struggle for an identity apart from Roman influence.
Another quality exhibit with a surcharge is “Explore! A Virtual Reality Tour of the Lands of the Bible!” This brand new experience takes you on a tour of 34 famous Biblical sites, such as the Sea of Galilee, and the Temple Mount from the comfort of your chair.
6. Sixth Floor Introduces Culinary Excellence
After a long, educational, and riveting day at the museum, relax at the restaurant Manna on the sixth floor while viewing the city from the glass-enclosed observation area. The menu, designed by Chef Todd Gray, offers exquisite Mediterranean cuisine.
For a lighter fare option, you can visit the Milk + Honey Café, which serves coffee, sandwiches, chips, and bakery items. A casual self-seated area lets you kick your feet up while discussing your favorite part of the day, and you might need a refill because there will be plenty.
Located at 400 4th Street SW in Washington D.C., just 2 blocks south of the National Mall, the museum is easily accessible by any mode of travel. The metro is the best bet, getting off the Federal Center SW stop, on the blue, orange, or silver lines. Parking is limited in the city, so reserving a spot in a parking garage is recommended.
Adult tickets can be purchased for $19.99 and children’s (7-17) tickets can be purchased for $9.99 online. The price is more than fair with all you and the family will take home from seeing the Bible and all it’s facets up close and personal.
As a Christian it is a constant struggle to stay focused on the Word of God in this day and age, with all the distractions and roles one plays that pull you in all different directions.
Having an outlet that is fun, family-bonding and educational that simultaneously brings you closer to your Savior is priceless. Get your tickets now, you won’t regret it.