The first time I came to Grand Rapids was nearly twenty years ago. At the time I was on the faculty at Wayne State University Medical School. I was taking Hebrew so I could read some of the Old Testament verses in their original language. That’s when I heard about the Dead Sea Scrolls exhibit at the Public Museum of Grand Rapids.
So, my son and I made the trip across the state to learn the story behind the discovery of the scrolls as well as the patient dedication of putting the pieces together to recreate as many of the ancient manuscripts as possible. Pictures were shown of the workers who sat at 15-foot-long tables with pieces of the scrolls spread out upon them.
The first scrolls were discovered in 1947 in caves near Qumran. The most recent discovery was reported yesterday. Archeologists and scholars are very excited about these new pieces, anticipating what can be learned from these writings, to be placed alongside the other scrolls. Read more HERE.
Because I understand that each piece is a treasure, the puzzler in me would love to help place the fragments of the scrolls together to reproduce even one page of the manuscript. We will have to wait to see if these new scrolls enrich the holy texts which are so much a part of our lives. May this latest discovery help us to see God’s work more clearly.
We are in the midst of our Lenten journey. Holy Week is less than two weeks away. During these 40 days, we have reflected on different parts of our Lord and Savior’s journey to the cross. We may have a favorite healing miracle that not only restored a person’s physical abilities but also renewed their spirits. The awesome power of grace shines through Jesus’ salvific acts. Each parable has multiple levels of meaning. Even though there are cultural differences between today and the time of Jesus, these lessons of wisdom hold as much meaning for us today as they did in first-century Israel.
Each of the 4 Gospels offers us a different view of our Lord and Savior. The Wedding of Cana and the Samaritan Woman at the Well are among my favorite passages from John. The parables of the Prodigal Son and the Good Samaritan are only found in Luke. Jesus quiets the storm in Mark. And my favorite passage from Matthew 25 is the parable of the sheep and goats.
Together, the 4 Gospels give us a deeper understanding of our Lord and Savior than each one does separately. And yet, as we prepare for Holy Week and Easter, we may still ask one another why our Creator was willing to do so much for our salvation. May we be blessed on this journey as we continue to work on the puzzling and yet fulfilling relationship we have with our God. And Amen.