This winter brings in a season of celebration for the three monotheistic faiths: Jews honor the triumphal victory of the Maccabees over the Greeks, Christians observe the birth of Jesus Christ and Muslims commemorate the Prophet Abraham’s willingness to sacrifice Ishmael during the "feast of Sacrifice".
Artifacts on display at new show (Photo courtesy of the Bible Lands Museum)
The exhibition presents various artifacts which bare Jewish symbols such as the menorah and the mahta (incense shovel), objects decorated with Christian symbols such as the cross and the christogram, as well as Islamic objects decorated with symbols such as the star and other important motifs.
On display are architectural elements, jewelry, ritual objects and more ranging from the 3rd – 13th Centuries CE. The exhibition reveals the great similarities in how each religion represented itself to the outside world. For example, the menorah is associated as an exclusively Jewish symbol, however in the past it served Christianity and Islam as well, representing a message of light and hope in each of the three religions.
The Bible Lands Museum, located in the heart of Jerusalem's museum row, has dedicated itself to exhibitions and programs which highlight the history of the region. It was the vision of its late founder, Dr. Elie Borowski, to present a universal institution where people of all faiths would be welcome to learn and understand our shared history.
This exhibition has been made possible by a contribution from the Lila Gruber Research Foundation, and Mrs. Daryl Kulok, who have donated many of the artifacts for the exhibition. The exhibition catalog has been published in Hebrew, Arabic and English, and the entire exhibition is presented tri-lingually, including a multi-media computer program installed in the gallery, to enable visitors from around the world to appreciate this important exhibition.
The museum is centrally located on Jerusalem's Museum Row, 25 Granot St., adjacent to the Israel Museum and the Knesset.