The new Museum of the Bible in Washington, DC, will display a collection of biblical artifacts discovered in Israel after reaching an agreement with the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA).
The artifacts—stone and alabaster vessels, figurines, glassware, jewelry, and more—come from different eras, including from the First and Second Temple periods as well as the Canaanite period, according to Micky Saban, head of the IAA’s National Treasures Department.
“The Israel Antiquities Authority is thrilled and proud to partner with the Museum of the Bible on this landmark project,” said IAA Director Israel Hasson. “Making the archaeological heritage of the land of Israel and the vital archaeological work conducted by the IAA available and accessible to people around the world is our mission. The rare opportunity to have a long-term exhibition in the U.S. Capital of a large selection of archaeological treasures that were excavated in Israel and illuminate the story of the bible is remarkable. We hope that the many expected visitors will enjoy the archaeological exhibits and learn about the periods and descriptions of the bible and the rich and diverse history and the archaeology of the Holy Land.”
Museum of the Bible President Cary Summers added, “When we set out to build the most advanced museum in the world, we knew we could do even better if we joined forces with one of the greatest collections in the world.”
The private museum is set to open in 2017 near the National Mall in Washington and is intended to engage visitors with the bible through its exhibits, scholarly research, and educational initiatives. Approximately $400 million has been invested in the 430,000-square-foot museum.