By Hemant Mehta
Of all the ways to describe the new Museum of the Bible that just opened in Washington, D.C. — thanks to $500 million from the family that owns Hobby Lobby — “nonsectarian” is probably the strangest. That’s because the museum very clearly pushes a Protestant view of the Bible, and the family has always made clear their ultimate goal is to bring people to Jesus even if the museum doesn’t always engage in outright proselytizing.
Writing for POLITICO, Candida Moss and Joel S. Baden say that there’s nothing neutral about this place:
After touring the site of the museum, visiting its traveling exhibit, and interviewing [Hobby Lobby CEO Steve] Green and others involved in the project, we have found that despite genuine efforts at nonsectarianism, the museum’s version of the Bible’s history remains beholden to the worldview of the Green family. The broader story it tells about the Bible, and especially the Bible’s place in American culture, is essentially a Protestant one, and it excludes other traditions when they might come into conflict with that basic story.
There’s nothing wrong with that, of course, especially when this is a privately funded museum. But if you’re looking for an objective look at the Bible, from a variety of perspectives, you’re not going to find it here. It’s the Bible as seen through a bunch of believers, who think the book has shaped the world in positive ways, and who aren’t interested in the views of scholars who take issue with traditional Christian interpretations of the book.
Continue reading by clicking the name of the source below.