On the third deck of our life-size Noah’s Ark, you’ll find one of our newer exhibits featuring a Torah scroll, with teaching on how we received the Bible and what an incredible gift it is to mankind.
It consists of a decommissioned Torah scroll (donated by those at God’s Ancient Library), which was written in Hebrew, and a lot of teaching signage and artifacts (or replicas of artifacts) relating to the translation and transmission of God’s written Word down through the ages.
The Hebrew language has a long history. Most of the Old Testament was written in Hebrew, but due to the Babylonian exile and the later adaption of Greek ideas and culture, Hebrew fell out of spoken use. Aramaic and Greek took over as the primary written and spoken language.
After the Jews were scattered outside of Israel, Hebrew was preserved by rabbis and scholars who understood the value of God’s Word in its original language.
The Hebrew text on the Torah scroll in this exhibit is one of those preserved texts. It spans roughly 40 feet from the beginning of Genesis to Exodus 18. If it were stretched out all the way, it would be 110 feet long and end in Deuteronomy!
One of the accounts included in this scroll is Abraham’s story.
Genesis 11 describes the Babel event and then traces Noah’s descendants through his son, Shem, to a Hebrew man named Abram. Genesis 12–17 introduces the promises of God to Abram, from whom God’s chosen people, the Israelites, would come. The Lord promised Abram that his offspring would be innumerable as the stars (Genesis 15:5) and that, through his line, God would bless all the nations of the earth (Genesis 12:3).
The Lord changed Abram’s name to Abraham, calling him “the father of a multitude of nations” (Genesis 17:5), and made an everlasting covenant with him and his descendants (Genesis 17:7). He reiterated this covenant to Abraham’s son Isaac and to Isaac’s son Jacob, whose 12 sons became the forefathers of the 12 tribes of Israel.
The Lord rescued Jacob’s descendants from slavery in Egypt, gave them his law, and delivered them to the land he promised to Abraham. He sent prophets who spoke God’s Word and eventually sent the promised Savior, Jesus Christ, a descendant of Abraham, into the world.
Jesus lived a sinless life (2 Corinthians 5:21) and died as a sacrifice for our sins (1 Timothy 2:5). Three days later, he defeated death by rising from the dead (1 Corinthians 15:4) so that all who believe in him can have eternal life (John 3:16–18), fulfilling the promise that the world be blessed through Abraham.
Another way the Lord blessed the world through Abraham was by entrusting his descendants with the oracles of God (Romans 3:2). This exhibit shows how the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob were given the privilege and responsibility of recording and preserving God’s Word, the holy Scripture.
To see this exhibit and more, start planning your visit to the Ark Encounter today!