Oklahoma Conference of the United Methodist Church

OCU students study Dead Sea Scroll


From left, Dr. Lisa Wolfe, Ethan Watt, Allison Bevers and Leigh Smith examine photos of ancient Hebrew documents.

Learn more:

"Coffee, Rolls, and Dead Sea Scrolls"
Presented by Dr. Wolfe and students
9 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 2,
OCU Chapel, lower level
(Homecoming weekend)

Professor Lisa Wolfe and students in her "Readings in Biblical Hebrew" class are studying, analyzing, and writing about a Dead Sea Scroll, beginning this fall at Oklahoma City University.

Since discovery of the ancient writings in the mid-20th century, the Dead Sea Scrolls have intrigued the general public and especially biblical scholars. Almost 1,000 parchment texts were found in a cave near the Dead Sea.

The course is part of a larger partnership between OCU’s Wimberly School of Religion and the Green Scholars Initiative (GSI), a program associated with a massive collection of biblical manuscripts and related artifacts recently acquired by the Green family, owners of Hobby Lobby.

Allison Bevers, one of Dr. Wolfe’s students, received an award from GSI to study in Oxford, England, for two weeks in June. Wolfe also attended, as a mentor. The emphasis was on Textual Studies, and they heard prominent Oxford scholars discuss "Scholarship and the Christian Mind."

Bevers, whose home church is Lindsay UMC, is a Bishop’s Scholar and is majoring in religion. She plans to attend seminary and prepare for ordained ministry in the Church. She works as a youth ministry intern at OKC-Nichols Hills UMC.

The GSI program pairs artifacts from the collection with professors and students not only to shed light on the items, but also to give students the rare opportunity to study biblical manuscripts.

The OCU students previously completed Biblical Hebrew I and II with Dr. Wolfe. As a class, they will work to determine what part of the Bible is represented in the scroll, and will investigate what other known scrolls may be closely related.

In February, Professor Marty Michelson and his Biblical Hebrew class from Southern Nazarene University in Bethany visited Wolfe’s class at OCU to hear presenter Robert Duke of Azusa Pacific University, Los Angeles area. Dr. Duke will oversee both Michelson and Wolfe, and their classes, in their work on the artifact.

Part of the Green collection was displayed at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art in 2011, and a museum to house the numerous artifacts is planned for Washington, D.C.


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