New Liberty Videos sent our family a copy of Mysteries of the Dead Sea Scrolls DVD. The DVD is geared toward a general audience, although it might not hold the interest of little ones quite as much as elementary grade on up through adult viewers. The DVD is approximately 60 minutes in length, and is broken into three parts: Dead Sea Scrolls with Joel Lampe, Hebrew Word Pictures with Dr. Frank Seekins, and The Forbidden Book with Dr. Craig Lampe.
The producer, Brian Barkley, has been in the motion picture business for over 40 years. I found it neat to learn that he came to Christ while producing a documentary at the San Quentin Prison called “Set Free.” I just love that. He now produces Christian videos such as Mysteries of the Dead Sea Scrolls.
Like I said earlier, the DVD is broken down into three parts. Part One is called Dead Sea Scrolls and Joel Lampe talks about the science, academics, geography and history behind the discovery, preservation, reading, assembling and transcribing related to one of the most amazing discoveries ever made. There are 19,000 pieces that have been found. Can you imagine putting a puzzle of that scale together? I love puzzles, but this one had to be overwhelming at times. As technology advanced, the capabilities of working with the scrolls did, too.
I also found the history of the people who were charged with protecting the scrolls both fascinating and tragic. The location of the scrolls died with the people and stayed hidden for a long time.
In Part Two, Dr. Frank Seekins teaches us about Hebrew Word Pictures. In Ancient Hebrew, the letters are formed from word pictures. When he explained them, it made sense. Plus, if you turn the Hebrew letters, you can see strong similarities to our own alphabet. And don’t forget, you have to read from right to left which would definitely be way too much fun to learn. Seriously, this sparked a bit of curiosity to learn some Ancient Hebrew. I found his word pictures and explanations fascinating and infused with faith and biblical truths.
Finally, we have Part Three covering The Forbidden Book by Dr. Craig Lampe. In this section, we go back in history to meet John Wycliffe, Martin Luther and William Tyndale. These courageous men risked their lives to preserve the scripture and make it accessible to everyone. These men are great examples of deep faith in God. They chose to obey God rather than fear men and as a result, many were able to read the scriptures for themselves.
We sat down and watched it straight through together. My husband even joined us partway through. I suggested the younger kids color while watching the DVD to help them focus. We also had quick discussions here and there as we watched it. The DVD is about an hour in total so it doesn’t take long to watch the whole thing.
We all found this DVD really interesting. The kids who watched are ages 8, 11, 15, and 18 plus my husband and me. No one found it boring although the kids did have favorites. Amber’s (8) favorite is the Hebrew Word Pictures while Jake (11) chose Dead Sea Scrolls as his. Christian (15) decided he also liked Dead Sea Scrolls the best and Chrystiana (18) sided with Amber for Hebrew Word Pictures. Me? I really can’t decide because all three were intriguing and I love history…especially when it is presented visually. The three men are very different in presenting styles. The first reminded me of a military leader, the second, a storyteller or entertainer, and the third made me think of sitting on a porch listening to old stories. All three were interesting and sparked a desire to dig deeper into the subjects they presented.
Mysteries of the Dead Sea Scrolls DVD is available for $19.95.
They also have some other DVDs that look pretty interesting.