Museum of the Bible

The world’s best-selling book has its own museum - of biblical proportions - in Washington.

“One of the items that we’re especially proud of is a slab of the Gilgamesh-Epos, among the oldest literature of humankind that is known – about 5,000 years old. It’s a story of Gilgamesh, and that includes the story of the ark and a big flood.”

The Bible is the best-selling book of all time: today, over 100 million copies a year are either sold or given away around the world. It’s also had an immeasurable impact on the world – for better and for worse.

In 2017, the Bible is getting its own museum. The Museum of the Bible is due to open in the middle of Washington DC, just a few blocks from the US Capitol and the Smithsonian, with a collection of more than 40,000 objects.

What is the museum for? What will be in it? Why is it a good idea? Who should visit it and why? In this episode of Life & Faith, Simon Smart and Natasha Moore interview two of the key players in this process: Allen Quine, Vice President of International Relations for the Museum of the Bible, and David Trobisch, director of the collections, to get an idea of what the Museum of the Bible will look like.

“Law, medicine, science, art, music, literature … you name it and you can see the Bible has had an underpinning in so much of what we do, and say, and talk about – and we don’t even realise it,” says Allen Quine. He’s talking about his favourite floor in the museum that shows the impact of the Bible on culture around the world. “Our goal is that people will walk through that floor and say, oh wow, I never knew that, I never thought about that coming from the Bible before.”

Visit the Museum of the Bible in Washington DC:

This episode was first broadcast on 7 April 2016.