WASHINGTON — The Museum of the Bible, a project of Hobby Lobby President Steve Green, has officially announced that its doors are scheduled to open in the nation’s capital in November 2017.
“The grand opening of Museum of the Bible is sure to be one of the most memorable events held in our nation’s capital in 2017,” said museum President Cary Summers in a statement on Friday.
The 430,000-square-foot museum is being constructed just three blocks from the U.S. Capitol, and plans to house one of the world’s largest collections of ancient biblical scrolls, codices, papyrus fragments and other historical artifacts.
The eight-floor facility with 40-foot bronze doors will feature over 40,000 biblical manuscripts owned by the Green family. It will also house a 500-seat theater, a 100-seat lecture hall, a restaurant, gardens, and a Nazareth village. Floors will serve various themes, such as “The Impact of the Bible,” “The Narratives of the Bible,” and “The History of the Bible.”
“The History Floor will feature more than 500 world-class artifacts that document the Bible’s preservation, translation, and transmission across centuries and cultures,” the website for the project outlines. “This floor features many of the greatest biblical discoveries, including writings dating to the time of Abraham, fragments of the Dead Sea Scrolls, early New Testament writings, and more.”
“The Impact Floor will explore the Bible’s impact over time on cultures, civilization, and daily life, including its profound influence on fine arts, science, government, and more,” it explains, noting that the experience will be visually stimulating and interactive.
Summers says that the museum will be on the cutting-edge of modern technology.
“Museum of the Bible’s team of innovators, in concert with some of the world’s leading creative and technical minds, has dedicated itself to building the most technologically advanced museum in the world,” he said in a press release. “This team brought together the most impressive electronic systems in the world, dreamed up how to create the best museum experience and then invented the rest of the tools they needed to bring our guests the most interactive, memorable experience possible.”
The performance hall will feature 7 state-of-the-art 4K projectors, which can project a 30,000-lumen image. Commentary at various exhibits will be available in 10 different languages, and some presentations will have 3D interactive virtual and augmented reality capability.
But most of all, the museum is meant to be a teaching tool in a world that doesn’t really understand the Scriptures.
“We have probably the most ignorant population we’ve ever had in our society [about the Bible] because it’s been taken out of our schools,” Green told Baptist Press in 2014 prior to the construction of the site. “We want to be able to, in a simple way, explain to them, ‘Here’s what the Bible is.’ Ultimately, it’s about the fact that we are sinners, we need a Savior and Christ was that. And He came to die for us that we might have life.”