Friday, October 24, 2014

Schoolhouse Review: New Liberty Videos

My most recent review was from New Liberty Videos a company dedicated to producing Christian movies. For the purpose of my review I received a copy of the Mysteries of the Dead Sea Scrolls.

This video actually covers topics other than the Dead Sea Scrolls. In all it covers three topics and is about an hour total in length. Let me tell you a little bit about each segment.

Dead Sea Scrolls
The first segment is the Dead Sea Scrolls, with Joel Lampe. This features what appears to be a lecture on the Dead Sea Scrolls. While I have heard a lot about them I really was not well versed on their exact significance. Joel did an excellent job of covering a wealth of information in a very short time. I was so fascinated with what all I learned, such as the fact that while they call them scrolls, there was actually only one scroll found completely in tact!

He shares how many scroll fragments were found and how they were pieced together to become whole scrolls. I was not aware that many of the scrolls found were not even Scripture. What is even more fascinating is to learn how that work continues even today. They are not done studying this amazing find! Joel also shares about the languages they were written in, what they were written on, and the most fascinating part is why they were left there in the first place!

Hebrew Word Pictures
The second segment was Hebrew Word Pictures, with Dr. Frank Seekins. At first I was thinking that this segment seemed out of place but by the end of it I was totally in awe of God. Dr. Seekins does an incredible job teaching how the Hebrew language was written in both words and pictures. He then begins to show you the picture that goes with each letter as you read some simple words. This language illustrates the true beauty and intent behind each word written in the Bible we hold so dear. Dr. Seekins calls it the heart of Hebrew. I think that is a great definition.

By the end of this short segment I was reading in ancient Hebrew! It was fascinating to me when he shared how the letter also symbolized an image which made it very easy to read. Without the images I can't really show you well, but all I can say is I want more of this!

The Forbidden Book
The final segment was The Forbidden Book, with Dr. Craig Lampe.This appears to be a partial segment of another video with the same title. In this one, the speaker gives you a brief history of how brave men sacrificed to get the Bible into the language of the ordinary people.

He begins to be pointing out that the Bible was originally available in several languages all over the world until the dark ages when Latin was made the only official language to read it in. While I knew the Bible was kept from ordinary citizens I never realized that there were also many errors in those Latin translations.  Then came Wycliff, Luther, and eventually Tyndale whose work led to the common people being able to read the Bible for themselves.

I learned interesting facts about each of those men and what led up to their determination to translate the Bible. Can you imagine being burned at the stake for simply speaking Bible passages in your own language to your children?  They were doing that. Mother's and many others were burned at the stake for not complying with the order. Tyndale also suffered that fate, but not until after the Bible was translated into English. While the segment was short it was fascinating. 

While all three segments were interesting, only the first one dealt with the Dead Sea Scrolls. This video is basically a recording of three separate live presentations where the speaker shares about the topic in front of an audience. I do not feel any of these are complete talks. I think they just took a part of a live lecture and put it on video. At the end of each talk they give you information on how to learn more. I would have rather had the video only cover one topic more thoroughly than to see each separate segment because I felt I like I was just scratching the surface on each one. While my daughter did not participate in watching with us, my husband and I really enjoyed it and did learn from it. I will hang on to it and use it in her studies as she gets older.

The Mysteries of the Dead Sea Scrolls sells for $19.95. It is for a general audience and has no specific age range suggested. I would suggest it for middle school on up, though some elementary school students might find it of interest. To learn more visit the New Liberty Videos website or see what other members of the Schoolhouse Review Crew thought about it by clicking on the banner below.

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