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John Calvin puts forward a very simple reason why love is the greatest gift: “Because faith and hope are our own: love is diffused among others.” In other words, faith and hope benefit the possessor, but love always benefits another. In John 13:34–35 Jesus says, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” Love always requires an “other” as an object; love cannot remain within itself, and that is part of what makes love the greatest gift.
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Virtually Explore the Israel Museum Collection

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The Israel Museum in Jerusalem is among the world’s leading art and archaeology museums. Its facilities across a 20-acre campus house nearly 500,000 objects dating from prehistory to the present day, including the largest collection of Holy Land artifacts in the world. Highlights on this massive campus include the Shrine of the Book building, which displays Dead Sea Scroll fragments and Medieval-period Biblical manuscripts, and a model of Second Temple Period Jerusalem spanning 1,000 square meters. Whether you have not yet had a chance to visit the museum or whether you are a seasoned visitor, you can now virtually explore the museum’s collections from the comfort of your home. Check out the virtual tours below and start your journey with a click of the button!

These digital projects were made possible with the support of George S. Blumenthal.


Pharaoh in Canaan: The Untold Story exhibit at the Israel Museum, Jerusalem.

Visualizing Isaiah

The prophet Isaiah lived in Jerusalem, the capital of the Kingdom of Judah, between the late eighth century and early seventh centuries B.C.E., under the rule of Kings Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah. During these turbulent times, the Assyrian Empire dominated the ancient Near East unchallenged. In 721 B.C.E., when Isaiah lived, the Northern Kingdom of Israel was destroyed by Assyrian king Sargon; twenty years later, the Southern Kingdom of Judah was ravaged by Sargon’s son, Sennacherib. Isaiah’s personality and prophecies, as described in Biblical texts, have made the Book of Isaiah a cornerstone of both Judaism and Christianity.

The Israel Museum holds the world’s most important collection of findings from the period in which the prophet Isaiah lived. These artifacts shed light on the material culture of Isaiah’s time, serving as a backdrop to many of his prophecies. Explore the museum’s rich selection of objects that portray the era of the prophet Isaiah.

Our free eBook Ten Top Biblical Archaeology Discoveries brings together the exciting worlds of archaeology and the Bible! Learn the fascinating insights gained from artifacts and ruins, like the Pool of Siloam in Jerusalem, where the Gospel of John says Jesus miraculously restored the sight of the blind man, and the Tel Dan inscription—the first historical evidence of King David outside the Bible.
Pharaoh in Canaan: The Untold Story

Canaan is mentioned in the Bible and in ancient Egyptian and Near Eastern records. Its area covered present-day Israel, western Jordan, Lebanon, and coastal and southern Syria, and its population was Semitic. The exhibit Pharaoh in Canaan: The Untold Story presents the relations between Canaan and Egypt through the prism of archaeological remains, with emphasis on the Egyptian military and administrative presence in Canaan between 1500 and 1150 B.C.E. Egyptian and Egyptian-style objects from this period, mainly from sites in Israel and some on view for the first time, form the core of this exhibition.
Ashkelon: A Retrospective

For thousands of years, Ashkelon served as a gateway between the lands of the Mediterranean and the southernmost reaches of the Levant. First settled in the late Chalcolithic Period (c. 4000 B.C.E.), it rose to prominence in the Middle Bronze Age (c. 1825 B.C.E.), when the Canaanites surrounded it with a massive rampart encompassing an area of some 150 acres. From this point on, Ashkelon dominated the region. Over the years, it was also inhabited by many other peoples, including Egyptians, Philistines, Phoenicians, Romans, Fatimids, and Crusaders.

Excavations conducted by the Leon Levy Expedition to Ashkelon from 1985–2016 systematically outlined the ancient site’s development from the time of its origins to its final days. Following the vision of founders Lawrence E. Stager, Leon Levy, and Shelby White, the excavations at Ashkelon have profoundly transformed our understanding of this fascinating hub of Mediterranean trade. The exhibition celebrates the successful completion of the Leon Levy Expedition to Ashkelon, which recently finished its final season after 30 years of intensive research.
Faces of Power: Roman Gold Coins from the Victor Adda Collection

Facial features have been regarded as a reflection of character and ability since ancient times. In the days of the Roman Empire, emperors used their own images to deliver messages to the citizens of Rome. Since most of the population had no direct contact with the emperor, his portrait on coins was a means of identifying him and establishing a relationship with the people.

The gold coins exhibited here shed light on the world of the emperors of Rome and their families. The earliest was struck in 45 B.C.E. by Julius Caesar; the latest is from 326 C.E. and bears the likeness of Constantine the Great. Whether they depict the emperors as mature and experienced or as young and innovative, as philosophers, soldiers, or lords and masters, the portraits—together with the coins’ slogans touting victory, peace, or security—were meant to immortalize Rome and its rulers. As we gaze upon them here, we are living proof of their success.
Biblical Archaeology Exhibits: From the Copper Age to the Present

The Holy Land Before Abraham: 3000 B.C.E.
The Sojourn into Egypt: 1500–1200 B.C.E.
The Time of the Judges: 1200–1000 B.C.E.
The Philistines: 1175–604 B.C.E.
David and Goliath: 1000 B.C.E.
The Babylonian Exile: 586–420 B.C.E.
The Creation of the State of Israel: 1948
The Digital Dead Sea Scrolls

The Dead Sea Scrolls Digital Project allows users to examine and explore these most ancient manuscripts from Second Temple times at a level of detail never before possible. Developed in partnership with Google, the new website gives users access to searchable, fast-loading, high-resolution images of the scrolls, as well as short explanatory videos and background information on the texts and their history. The Dead Sea Scrolls, which include the oldest known Biblical manuscripts in existence, offer critical insight into Jewish society in the Land of Israel during the Second Temple Period, the time of the birth of Christianity and rabbinic Judaism. Five complete scrolls from the Israel Museum have been digitized for the project at this stage and are now accessible online.
The Lachish Battle Reliefs in the Palace Without Rival

Watch a series of narrated videos and look at the accompanying descriptions, images, and bibliography on the Assyrian capital at Nimrud in the ninth century B.C.E.—during the time of King Shalmaneser III—as well as on the later capital at Nineveh during the eighth century B.C.E. It was in the eighth century when King Sennacherib had tales of his conquest and destruction of the fortress at Lachish carved across the walls of one room in his Palace Without Rival, an episode from his third campaign across the Levant that is also chronicled in several Biblical passages referencing his subjugation of King Hezekiah of Jerusalem.

Our free eBook Ten Top Biblical Archaeology Discoveries brings together the exciting worlds of archaeology and the Bible! Learn the fascinating insights gained from artifacts and ruins, like the Pool of Siloam in Jerusalem, where the Gospel of John says Jesus miraculously restored the sight of the blind man, and the Tel Dan inscription—the first historical evidence of King David outside the Bible.

The post Virtually Explore the Israel Museum Collection appeared first on Biblical Archaeology Society.

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