Opening April 2015
Santa Clarita, CA
At Passages we invite you to engage with the history of the bestselling, most influential book of all time – the Bible!
Passages is a 30,000-square-foot, interactive exhibit presented by Museum of the Bible that chronicles the remarkable history of the Bible, from its transmission and translation to its impact and controversies. Around 400 priceless artifacts are used to tell the stories at Passages. These are set against immersive environments, such as the Caves of Qumran, where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered; the Jerusalem Chamber at Westminster Abbey, where a committee of scholars worked to finalize the King James Bible translation; and even the surface of the moon itself, where a complete copy of the Bible was carried by astronaut Edgar Mitchell on Apollo 14.
What People Are Saying
Nine out of 10 visitors give Passages a perfect five stars!
[These] rare biblical texts and artifacts would make Indiana Jones salivate.
The astonishing collection has created buzz in the world of rare book collecting.
A sampler of Jewish, Roman Catholic and Protestant treasures…
Four Unique Sections To Explore
Learn how the text of the Bible has been passed down through the centuries
Discover how individuals in both ancient and modern times have worked to translate the Bible's contents
See how the Bible has affected art, culture, and the ritual practices of various religions
Explore why the Bible's message has sometimes been surrounded by controversy
What Visitors Will Discover
Gutenberg Press Shop
In ‘Gutenberg’s Print Shop’, visitors to Passages will encounter a working replica of the Gutenberg’s printing press. Some might even get the opportunity to try their hand at a bit of printing themselves!
The Lunar Bible
Passages visitors have an opportunity to travel to the surface of the moon, where they will see an actual copy of the Bible printed on microfiche that landed on the moon during the Apollo 14 mission on February 5, 1971.
Caves of Qumran
In the Caves of Qumran visitors have an opportunity to examine actual fragments from the Dead Sea Scrolls, as well as stunning facsimiles of some of the oldest surviving manuscripts of the Hebrew Bibles.
King James Bible
The first edition of the King James Bible was printed in 1611 under the reign of King James I of England. It remains the best-selling, most-quoted, and most-influential English translation of the Bible ever produced. Prior to this, English translations of the Bible were considered illegal. At Passages visitors can learn about the ultimate price many paid to make vernacular translations of the Bible readily available.
In a 5th-century cave in Bethlehem, visitors to Passages will meet St. Jerome, a scholar who spent over 30 years producing the Vulgate, a new translation of the Bible into Latin from the original Hebrew and Greek texts. This interactive exhibit allows you to ask him questions to learn more about the process—and difficulties—of biblical translation.
The Khabouris Codex is medieval manuscript which contains the New Testament translated into Syriac, which has been carbon-dated to the 11th or 12th century AD. According to a note written by the scribe at the end of the manuscript, it was copied from another manuscript that was written in the second century AD.
Battle Hymn of the Republic
The original manuscript of “The Battle Hymn of the Republic,” written by Julia Ward Howe in 1861, demonstrates the impact that the Bible has had on music and popular culture. Visitors to Passages can watch a hologram of President Abraham Lincoln as he tells the story behind this remarkable manuscript that has become a well-known hymn.
The Dura Europos Synagogue in Syria is one of the oldest synagogues in the world, dating back to AD 244. In this room, visitors will learn how the Bible has influenced Judaica and the religious practices of Judaism.
Tiffany Stained Glass
Louis Comfort Tiffany (c. 1848-1933), founder of Tiffany Studios, was a New York City artist and interior designer who developed a fascination for stained glass after a visit to the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. The stained glass on display at Passages feature two gospel-writers and demonstrate many innovative techniques that immortalized Tiffany’s name in the glass production industry.
The Reformation Theatre provides visitors with a front-row seat to a hypothetical debate between three giants of 16th-century Christianity—Martin Luther, Desiderius Erasmus, and Johann Eck—as they discuss the greatest controversy of their day, the Protestant Reformation.
Martin Luther Letter
On display in Passages is a fascinating letter written and signed by Martin Luther on the night before he was charged with heresy. Composed in Latin, the letter provides valuable insight into the thoughts of the most important theologian of the Reformation, as he begins to deal with the official reactions to his new—and controversial—ideas.
Set against the background of ‘The Night of Broken Glass,’ visitors will view artifacts that present how the Bible was featured on both sides of this tragic event, as the Nazis desecrated and destroyed countless Jewish scrolls containing sections of the Bible, while justifying their actions by appealing to certain texts in the Bible.