Permanent exhibition

Embark on an expedition into the exciting world of the Bible and its thousands of years of history. In an appealing setting, original finds from Israel, life in biblical times, a pilgrimage to Jerusalem, a medieval book workshop and the question of what this might have to do with us modern people await you. Discover the Bible in a new way: eventful, hands-on and full of surprises.

Between temple and lake

The biblical themes are fanned out in four interactive worlds of experience. Let yourself be surprised and discover the diversity of the Bible.

  • Three religions under one tent roof
  • Between Egypt and Mesopotamia
  • Creation and Liberation
  • From hieroglyphics to the alphabet
  • A Journey to Jerusalem
  • Occupation and Resistance
  • Pharisees, Romans, Zealots and others
  • Celebrating festivals, bearing grief
  • Everyday life at the Sea of Gennesaret
  • Sources of the Bible
  • Spread of the Bible

Take a seat in a nomad tent as in biblical times, turn an original hand mill and grind grain as in those days.

Discover valuable manuscripts and prints from Judaism, Christianity and Islam: Where do the scriptural religions tell similar stories and how do they differ?

What role do the stories of Avram/Abraham/Ibrahim, Sara and Hagar play? What does this mean for our living together in diversity today?

In a house like 2500 years ago, archaeological finds tell of biblical times and life at that time.

An interactive map describes how the biblical regions are, on the one hand, at the crossroads of all important trade routes, and on the other hand, battlefields of the great powers between the Nile and the river Euphrates.

The One God faith is formed in a world of many powers, gods and goddesses.

God appears in the Bible in different forms. The biblical works of creation are impressive, especially “God’s image”, the human being, created male and female.

God liberates the biblical people from captivity and with his commandments makes suggestions for a peaceful life in freedom. What do the Ten Commandments still mean today?

God loves the people and is especially close to them in the sanctuary in Jerusalem. The replica of King Solomon’s temple illustrates this vividly. Scents and fruits of the Orient give a taste of God’s love.

The Bible comes from the area where writing, but also papyrus and parchment, originated. Only a few people can read cuneiform or hieroglyphics.

The alphabet contributes to the spread of writings and books. Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek are the original languages of the biblical writings.

2000 years ago, pilgrims set out for Jerusalem for the Passover or Feast of Tabernacles. Their destination is the Temple Mount at the time of King Herod. The virtual tour and the haptic model illustrate the dimensions of this huge temple.

Where is the altar of sacrifice? How do the incense offerings smell? The palaces of the rich upper class are not far away. Original archaeological finds from the land and time of Jesus, such as jewellery, illustrate their wealth.

And what is behind the thirty genuine pieces of silver destined for the temple in Jerusalem, buried and discovered?

All of Judea is occupied by the Romans! 2000 years ago, only a small group - the Zealots - put up armed resistance in secret. Whoever the Romans get hold of has to die on the cross. Discover remnants of the struggle from the Jewish uprising 2000 years ago in original finds, also from the mountain fortress of Masada on the Dead Sea.

Can you unlock the Roman lock with the ancient key? You can stamp the emblem of the Roman 10th Legion on a Roman brick stamp in Jerusalem. What does the birth of Emperor Augustus have to do with the “Gospel” and why is it written in a Greek inscription in the city of Priene?

Seven interviews with people from the land and from the time of Jesus tell about their lives. What moves them? What is their attitude to the occupying power in Rome? What do they think of the priests in the temple in Jerusalem?

The fishermen, the rich, the pilgrims, the Pharisees and the Sadducees, the Romans, the Zealots and also a disciple of Jesus have their say. What do they know about Jesus of Nazareth who travels through the land? And what do they think of him?

Through the different perspectives of the groups of people, the picture of a diverse society in Judea and Jerusalem 2000 years ago emerges.

The Bible tells of many celebrations. One of the most famous is probably a wedding story. Under a canopy being prepared for the wedding, original purity vessels are found, as they were used at a wedding … and water turned into wine in them. Of course, music plays a major role. Instruments of biblical times are ram’s horn and lyre, or even fanfares.

Death is also celebrated ceremoniously. In an empty tomb, 2000-year-old grave goods from a burial cave in Jerusalem are found, including bone boxes for the deceased. There is even a name on one of them.

How did simple people live in the countryside in biblical times? How hard did they earn their living?

The example of the living environment of fishermen and their families at Lake Gennesaret shows the challenges. In addition to exciting insights into fishing techniques and the dangers they faced when fishing on the lake, it shows what role religion played in their lives.

Originally, books were scrolls on parchment or papyrus. The oldest completely preserved book of the Bible is a Hebrew manuscript that is 2200 years old. It was found in the Dead Sea caves near the village of Qumran.

A small piece of papyrus from the 3rd century AD contains a few lines from the Gospel of Matthew in the New Testament.

Those interested in scriptures can try their hand at verses from the Bible in the Greek, Coptic or Arabic scripts at a light table.

Martin Luther’s “Biblia Deutsch” more than 500 years ago was the trigger for the first media revolution in world history. This was made possible because only a few years earlier Johannes Gutenberg had ushered in a new age with movable type on a printing press. The benefits of this invention were enormous. Martin Luther’s translation into German and the new printing technique made the Bible one of the first bestsellers.

In the book workshop you can print a caterpillar copy on the Gutenberg press or fold and stitch a small Biblia as in Luther’s time.

Next guided tours & events

Objects in the exhibition

2013 RB 6678 NT Objekt Salbflasche

More than 330 archaeological finds from Israel make the experience authentic. The cooperation with the Israel Antiquities Authority in Jerusalem, which is unique in Europe, makes it possible to present the excavation finds from the time of Jesus directly at the Museumsufer in Frankfurt am Main. In addition, you will discover selected book art from more than 500 years.

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