Museum of the Bible, Washington DC

#17 of 67 in Museums in Washington DC
Specialty Museum · Hidden Gem · Museum
The Museum of the Bible is a museum in Washington D.C. which documents the narrative, history, and impact of the Bible. It opened on November 17, 2017, and has 1,150 items in its permanent collection and 2,000 items on loan from other institutions and collections.
The museum claims it is nonsectarian and "is not political, and it will not proselytize." However, members of the board of directors are required to sign a "faith statement" regarding the truth of the Bible.
In the year before its launch, the museum fielded questions about the acquisition of its collection, including a federal case over smuggled Iraqi antiquities and thousands of clay artifacts. The museum's dedication ceremony received an official pontifical blessing from Pope Francis, and people in attendance included Cardinal Donald Wuerl, musician CeCe Winans, Senate Chaplain Barry Black, Washington, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser, and Israeli Ambassador Ron Dermer.
The Museum of the Bible features dining, including a restaurant called Manna that serves kosher food.
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Museum of the Bible reviews

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1,070 reviews
  • We loved the many original antique documents. The historical flow of information about the origins and development of the Bible was comprehensible and illustrative. We would have appreciated a...  more »
  • So much to see and absorb. Filled almost an entire day there. Really liked the Hebrew Bible experience on the 3rd floor. This is actually the first thing we did and so much different from just...  more »
  • My visit and experience at this museum was very rewarding and somewhat breathtaking. I love the history of the bible and to learn how many hands and lives have been touched by God's Word is amazing. The Lord, is doing something that no eyes have seen and no ears have heard. I definitely am purchasing membership. My daughter loves learning about Jesus and other members of the body of Christ. She asked to go back to. I hope to return before the year is over.
  • The museum is packed with printed information, but also has enough more stimulating experiences that add variety and kept my easily impatient mind occupied. It is indeed a museum of the Bible, and several floors are dedicated to it's subject; the sources for, the impact and influence of and the historical figures influential in the Bibles development and spread. Although there's an impressive amount of information the exhibits manage to avoid being dry and overly academic and the presentations are designed to keep short attention spans occupied and engaged using a clever combination of videos, lights, and sound as well as shapes - the geometric designs used in display housings and the divisions of exhibition areas add a nice level of stimulation and engagement. The upper floors are more visual and hands on keeping the visitor moving and adds a sense of exploration. The Bible without a doubt is a spiritual guide and holy text to believers. But those with a more secular, even skeptical mind set may find the museum interesting and the experience more enjoyable and interesting than expected. Be aware that the security hurdle is time consuming -I strongly suggest carrying as little as possible on your visit. That said, there is a coat/bag check available. There are several large elevators, easy access entrances and doorways, lots of bathrooms, a cafe, big gift shop, a roof garden and the whole museum is well lit and roomy. Photography without flash is allowed and encouraged. In a city overflowing with free museums, the entrance fee is steep, and that's what will keep me from going more frequently.

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