FUN FACT NINE
In 1956, Cave 11 yielded thirty manuscripts, among which was the nine meter-long Temple Scroll. Wow – that’s as long as two SUV’s laid end-to-end or (and here’s a sobering thought) as long as a Nile crocodile. Fortunately, ancient scripture wasn’t written on crocs. It doesn’t take much imagination to figure out which would be easier to hold down. A few papyrus fragments were also discovered in Cave 7 (these fragments were the size of a croc egg squashed flat by a Nile hippo and picked clean by a hungry egret). The Cave 7 papyrus is unusual in that a) they were papyrus, rather than parchment; b) they were not stepped on by a hippo or pecked at by an egret; and c) they were written in Greek. This (the papyrus and Greek combination, not the hippo and egret factor) prompted one scholar (José O’Callaghan) to suggest that these fragments represent New Testament material. However, the Cave 7 papyrus pieces are too small to make sense of them, so O’Callaghan’s claim appears to be based more upon wishful thinking than upon scholarly analysis
When a Roman Catholic scholar involved in the Dead Sea Scrolls Project discovers a heretical message contained in one of the Scrolls he hides it. Decades later, a prominent archeologist discovers reference to the scroll in an archeological dig. This discovery spurs the world religions into a dangerous game of cat and mouse, in which all who seek the hidden scroll are mysteriously silenced, leaving the salvation of humankind to a father and son, who must either find the hidden scroll … or die trying.