Museums are a necessary tool in preserving Earth's history, whether that history is related to wars, ancient civilizations, art, culture, or even religion. While not as well-known as many mainstream museums, institutions dedicated to the persistence, precepts, and heritage of major religions provide worthwhile insight into the development of religious ideas and how these ideas may have shaped cultural values and practices over generations. One of the most popular subjects for religious museums, both in the U.S. and around the globe, is Christianity, a belief system that carries a centuries-old yet substantially varied tradition.
As evidenced by its numerous denominations, many aspects of the Christian faith differ from member to member, though the religion’s holistic message remains largely the same across the globe. Dedicated to spreading the Gospel message, especially God’s gift of salvation to all the nations, Christians treasure and take pride in the historic documents and relics related to their faith. Many Bible-themed museums around the world boast impressive collections of antiquities relevant to their Scripture's history and application throughout successive generations of believers. Below are listed some of the best Christian museums around the world. Be sure to vote on which is the most impressive, fascinating, or breathtaking among them.
The Creation Museum is located in Petersburg, Kentucky, and advertises that they are a state-of-the-art museum that allows visitors to “venture through biblical history, stunning exhibits, botanical gardens, planetarium, zoo, zip line adventure course, and much more.” 75,000 square feet in size, the Creation Museum features nearly 150 exhibits and claims to retell the Bible chronologically through a series of “Seven C’s,” starting with Creation and ending with Christ’s return. Their mission is to show “why God’s infallible Word, rather than man’s faulty assumptions, is the place to begin if we want to make sense of our world.”
The museum also has a sister location located about 40 miles south in Williamstown. This attraction, entitled the Ark Encounter, “brings to life the Ark of Noah’s day and equips visitors to understand the reality of the events recorded in the book of Genesis.”
Located In: Petersburg, Kentucky, USA
Located in Washington D.C., Museum of the Bible boasts numerous exhibits related to biblical history and Christian culture. Comprised of eight floors total, the museum hosts exhibits on the impact, stories, and history of the Bible, as well as countless artifacts from the Israel Antiquities Authority. Opened in November of 2017, the museum stands only three blocks from the U.S. Capitol and encompasses 430,000 square feet. From August of 2018 to January of 2019, the site is hosting an exhibit entitled “Pilgrim Preacher: Billy Graham, the Bible, and the Challenges of the Modern World.” This newest addition to the museum claims to offer visitors “an exciting look into the life of Billy Graham and the role of the Bible in his ministry.”
Located In: Washington, D.C., USA
The Holy Land Experience, located in Orlando, Florida, was built by Marvin Rosenthal, a Jewish Christian, in the 1990s. His primary motivations were to proclaim the Gospel and to inform the public of Christianity’s Judaic roots. The park opened on February 5th, 2001. In August of the following year, the Scriptorium was opened, an exhibit that featured the Van Kampen Collection of Biblically related artifacts. The Scriptorium is the fourth largest collection of such items in the world. In the midst of 2007's struggling economy, Trinity Broadcasting Network purchased Rosenthal's facility to house a new broadcasting studio. The park’s business continued and soon began to flourish, eventually culminating in the addition of the Church of All Nations, a 2,000 seat auditorium.
Located In: Orlando, Florida, USA
Billy Graham, a world-famous evangelist who passed away in February of 2018, was initially against the concept of a library bearing his name. He believed that, instead, all fame and glory should point to God alone. He only reconsidered once the idea was pitched as an ongoing “Crusade” that would persist for many generations. Located in Charlotte, North Carolina, the combination library-and-museum (though marketed not as a museum, but rather a “ministry”) visually mimics Graham’s upbringing on a Charlotte dairy farm. The site was opened in 2007 and has since welcomed over one million visitors. The museum offers attractions such as a “Journey of Faith” tour, stories of those whose spiritual lives were impacted by Graham’s evangelism, and the original house of the Graham family.
Located In: Charlotte, North Carolina, USA