Bible Museum Coming To D.C.-Â In this episode, weÂ are talking about how toÂ revive the Bible in America so that we as Americans can regain a Biblical worldview. We are talking with Steve Green,Â president of Hobby Lobby and the Bible Museum that he is building in D.C that is opening this fall!Â
Air Date:Â 05/01/2017
Guests: Steve Green. David Barton, Rick Green, and Tim Barton
- WallBuilders | American historical events, founding fathers, historical documents, books, videos, CDs, tapes, David Barton’s speaking schedule.
- The Courageous Leaders Collection Â Use promo code WBL17 to receive 10% off your entire order!
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- The Bible Museum
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Transcription note: Â As a courtesy for our listeners’ enjoyment, we are providing a transcription of this podcast. Â However, as this is transcribed from a live talk show, words and sentence structure were not altered to fit grammatical, written norms in order to preserve the integrity of the actual dialogue between the speakers. Â Additionally, names may be misspelled because of the difficulty in understanding the speaker at times. We apologize in advance.
Welcome to the intersection of faith and the culture. Â This is WallBuilders Live! where we”re talking about these hottest topics on policy, faith, and the culture, all from Biblical, historical, and constitutional perspective.
We’re here with David Barton. Â He’s America’s premiere historian and TIME magazine’s top 25 most influential American evangelicals and Founder of WallBuilders. Also Tim Barton, president of WallBuilders, national speaker, and pastor. And my name’s Rick Green. Â I’m a former Texas state representative.
You can find out more about us and the organization at WallBuildersLive.com for the radio program, archives for the program, all kinds of great links and information. And then WallBuilders.com. So the difference is WallBuilders.com is for our main website and WallBuildersLive.com is for the radio website. But at WallBuilders.com there are all kinds of great information and materials available to you to get educated about the Founding Fathers and our Constitution and how to apply those things.
Getting The Bible Into Your Heart
So, David, Tim, I said, “a Biblical perspective” but for us to have a Biblical perspective, for the nation to have a Biblical perspective, we’ve got to get back to what a Biblical worldview actually is. And today we’re going to talk about the need to revive the Bible in America so that we can have that Biblical worldview.
The Bible continues to be one of the best-selling books in America. But it’s also one of the least read books in America. So we’ve got to get that off the shelf, get it into our heart, into our mind, and to our spirit, we”ve got to live that thing.
And there are a lot of people who just do it like a devotional thing. They kind of plop it open and read a verse here or there. And you just need to go through it systematically. Read the whole book.
Paul talked about the thing where you rightly divide the Word of Truth. You need be able to know enough about the Bible to know that when the verse says, “Judas went and hanged himself.” Another verse says, “Go and do likewise.” You don’t go commit suicide. That’s not what the verse says. I mean you got to read enough the Bible to know what we’re talking about in each section and what each one covers.
And by the way, I’ll point out with most educational things, if you look at math. One of the things we do with math is if you’re a kid going to school and you’re doing your time’s tables, you do them over, and over, and over. Why? You’re trying to ingrain it in you.
And one of the problems that even if you’ve read the Bible, “Well, I’ve already done that.” Well, yeah. But this is your math tables, right? You go back and you read it again, and you read it again, you do it again. Because one of the things that fundamentally we want to have impressed on us is truth. And ultimately truth has to be something outside of ourselves. It can’t be subjective, it can’t be a collective subjective, and can’t be society, or culture, or government. There has to be a higher authority than ourselves for what determines and dictates truth.
And that’s where we point to the Bible and say, “This is where we can find truth from the word of God.” And ultimately truth is then found from God and Jesus his Son. He is the way, the truth, and the life. But he goes back to the word.
And so we want to continually feed ourselves with this. One of the things that Paul wrote in, Â I think is Romans 10:17, he says faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God.
So our faith is built up. The more time we spend in the world, the more time we go back over, Paul, I think also is the one that wrote that we should wash our minds with the word. But it’s this idea that you don’t just, even as you’re saying, systematically go through it. Well, you should go through it systematically. And then once you’ve gone through systematically you should do it again, and then you should do it again, and you should do it again, and you should keep doing it again until the Bible has really taken hold of your mind, taken a hold of your heart, and it changes the way that we live until the Bible has done that in our life. We have not spent enough time in the Bible.
Give Us This Day, Our Daily Bread
Yeah, it’s not an atmosphere that you kind of breathe in, you know? Where you’re American therefore you’re a Christian and a Christian knows the Bible and I have the Bible in my house. The average house has 4.4 Bibles. That doesn’t mean you know anything about it.
So many people have memorized the Lord’s Prayer, which is a great model for prayer. And you remember part of the prayer Jesus said to pray was, “Give us this day, our daily bread.” Well, that’s in Matthew 6 and in Matthew 4 Jesus pointed out Matthew 4:4 he said, “Man doesn”t live by bread alone. He lives by every word that comes out of the mouth of God.” So you pray for daily bread but that’s also a spiritual daily bread that comes from God’s word.
And just as you eat three meals every day you ought to be in spiritual meals every day. You can’t get away with just having a spiritual meal once every month, or two months, or three months, or once every five days. Â You”d starve to death. So you can’t starve your spirit and expect your spirit to do well. Because you couldn”t starve your body and expect it to do well either.
Well, and I also point out that in John, Jesus said that he is the Good Shepherd. Â He says, “My sheep, they hear my voice and they won’t turn aside to another.” And when I was a youth pastor one of the most common questions I would get from kids is, “How do I hear God’s voice?” And I always told them, “Read the Bible” because you will never recognize God’s voice if you don’t know what God’s voice sounds like, and God’s voice sounds like his word.
So, how do you recognize God’s voice? You spend time in his word because as you know the words of God then you can recognize the voice of God because they will say the words of God.
But this is where, so that we can be a sheep, and we can know his voice so that we can have daily food that we can feed our mind, our body, our soul every single day, several meals a day. There are so many reasons we can point to that we need to spend time in the word. But it’s it’s very plain and it’s very clear as followers of Christ as Christians we need to be spending time in the word.
Well, one of the individuals helping to bring the Bible back and restoration in America is Steve Green. He’s the president of Hobby Lobby, author of the book The Bible in America. We’re going to talk about that book with him a little later in the program and also the new Museum of the Bible going in D.C.
Right now we’re going to take a quick break. We’ll be back with David Barton right here on WallBuilders Live.
Moment From American History
This is Tim Barton from WallBuilders with another moment from American history. Alexis De Tocqueville, a political official from France, traveled to the United States in 1831 and penned his observations in the now famous book, “Democracy In America.”
Being from France, what he found in America was completely unexpected to him. He reported, “Upon my arrival in the United States, the religious aspect of the country was the first thing that struck my attention. And the longer I stayed there the more I perceived the great political consequences resulting from this. In France, I had almost always seen the spirit of religion and the spirit of freedom marching in opposite directions. But in America, I found that they were intimately united and that they reigned in common over the same country.”
Did Tocqueville recognize that it was Biblical Christianity and the morals it produced that made America great? For more information about Alexis Tocqueville and the positive influence of Christianity in early America go to WallBuilders.com.
Studying The Bible
Thanks for staying with us on WallBuilders Live! Back on with David Barton talking about the need to restore the Bible in America. And stay with us, later in the program, Steve Green president of Hobby Lobby will be with us to talk about his book “The Bible in America” and also the Museum of the Bible coming soon to Washington, D.C.
So, Tim, you were talking about the need to read over, and over again, as well. I know for me, I don’t care how many times I’ve read Proverbs something new pops out at me. Or even going back to Genesis in the Old Testament. Every time, if you go through the Bible once a year, you’re still going to find new stuff, every single time. God’s going to illuminate and enlighten and open your eyes to things you didn’t see before.
Yeah, that’s a repetition that is so helpful. And that’s what Tim said. That’s math tables. You will never master the stuff and make it useful to you. It will only be frustrating to you if you just dip your toe in the water every once in awhile.
You gotta jump in and swim at some point. And when you do that, then you say, “Man, not only can swim, I can go scuba diving, and I do all these water sports, and I can ski, and I can surf.” Once you get into it, there is so much more there than what it looks like on the surface.
But you never get that when you just kind of do devotionals every once in awhile. You never really get fed. Once you have a good meal you actually like to go back and eat more. Once you find a good restaurant you go back and frequent it. That’s the way the Bible will be if you can get yourself through that first icebreaking part and get into it and stay there, have the discipline to stay for a few weeks, you’ll find it become a fascinating book.
I would even say, even beyond the entirety of the Bible, if you’ve never read the Bible you need to read the whole thing. But I would say, “If you haven’t spent much time on the word you should start off reading the Gospel of John or read the book of James. You would start off with some very manageable bite sized things, “I’ve never done this. And now I’m getting into the word.” Go to 1 John and things that are very practical, very applicable, but that can stir up a hunger. Because once you start seeing how it applies and seeing the relevancy, now, “I want more.”
Well, great. So, now, let’s really get into this. Let’s start from Genesis and you can get a chronological Bible, you can get the normal Bibles that we have, the 66 books. I was going to say 60 plus but it’s 66, I knew the number. But the 66 books they’re not all in chronological order. But there are Bibles that are in chronological order. There are study Bibles that don’t appear in chronological order but it has all kinds of incredible commentaries to help you see the way it pieces together. And you really can get into this.
The more you dig into it the more sense it will make. Dad, you mentioned that sometimes you’ve got to get through it the first time and then it starts to make more sense a second time, and more since the third time, and more since the fourth time.
Well, it”s just like your math tables. The first time I did it I didn’t get it.
No doubt. And Tim you’re so right to talk about the different ways that it is available and not only the different written versions but even if you get the YouVersion app or other apps on your phone you can listen. So while you’re running or exercising or whatever or just driving to work you can listen to the Bible. Some people learn better auditorily anyway. And you mentioned Gospel of John, there’s a great video series that’s literally word for word the Gospel of John that you can watch, so you can actually experience it and help to have those-those visual.
So there are so many ways you can dive in. And if this is new to you, if you’re intrigued by this, just find one of those and latch onto the way that’s best for you to learn and it will create that hunger Tim is talking about.
The Bible Still Needs To Be Written In So Many Languages
Yeah, and when you talk about the Bible, I mean you’re really talking about a book where the New Testament part has been around for 2,000 years and much of the old testament part has been around for over 3,000 years. And historically speaking, from a secular viewpoint, there is no single book in the history of the world that’s had as much positive impact for the uplift of mankind as has the Bible.
Because it’s been there for 3,000 years in written form in some way, shape, fashion, or form. There’s a lot of history that surrounds the Bible and what we have today. You walk into Wal-Mart and pick it up and buy it. I mean there’s thousands of people who lost their lives for us to be able to have what we have today. And we just don’t know the history in that story.
And so the Green family, the Green family from Hobby Lobby, they are very much in the Bible stuff. As a matter of fact, we just recently had Mark Green on talking about Bible translations and how there’s still 2,000 languages in the world that don’t have a Bible in that language.
Well, David, talk about the value of that. Like you said, you just walk into Walmart and buy one. You don’t realize that price has been paid. Man, some people can’t even get one in their language right now. And that’s what we talked to Mart about last week was how to get more of them in people’s hands.
And so what we have coming now is a Bible Museum in Washington, D.C. It is parallel to the Smithsonian and the degree of artifacts that it has. I’ve seen these things, I’ve been there, I’ve gone through it with the Greens. I mean, there are so many cool things that visually are cool, the stories are cool, and so they are opening a major museum in D.C. right near the Smithsonian. Several floors high, several stories. It’s unbelievable technology. And so that’s coming and so Steve Green who is president of the Museum of the Bible will be able to tell us about this and when it opens. This is something everybody needs to go see.
Steve Green, our guest, when we come back to WallBuilders Live!
Hi, friends! This is Tim Barton of WallBuilders.This is a time when most Americans don’t know much about American history or even heroes of the faith. I know, often times as parents we’re trying to find good content for our kids to read.
If you remember back in the Bible, the Book of Hebrews it has the Faith Hall of Fame, where they outlined the leaders of faith that had gone before them. Well, this is something that as Americans we really want to go back and outline some of these heroes not just of American history, but heroes of Christianity and our faith as well.
I wanted to let you know about some biographical sketches we have available on our website. One is called, “The Courageous Leaders Collection“ and this collection includes people like Abigail Adams, Abraham Lincoln, Francis Scott Key, George Washington Carver, Susanna Wesley, even the Wright brothers.
There’s a second collection called, “Heroes of History“ in this collection you read about people like Benjamin Franklin, Christopher Columbus, Daniel Boone, George Washington, Harriet Tubman, the list goes on and on.
This is a great collection for your young person to have and read. And it’s a providential view of American and Christian history. This is available at WallBuilders.com.
How The Greens Decided To Make A Bible Museum
Welcome back, thanks for staying with us here on WallBuilders Live! Steve Green with us, he’s the chairman of the board of the Museum of the Bible and also president of Hobby Lobby.
Steve, just appreciate what you all are doing. I am so excited about this museum. I got to see you present it at the National Bible Bee last fall and it was just incredible. Can’t wait to go visit.
Well, I appreciate that. It has been an exciting journey for myself and we’re really excited about getting open later this year.
Well, I just got through reading your book, “The Bible in America, What We Believe About the Most Important Book in Our History.” Along with Todd Hilar, which by the way, I didn’t realize a connection to him through cliff Graham’s ministry. But anyway, great book and just incredible effort to restore this book back to its proper place in our culture in America. What got you thinking that a museum in D.C. would be a good way to get more people focused on the Bible?
Well, my brother who opened a Christian bookstore had over the years mentioned the idea of putting in a Bible museum. But we never did anything to fulfill that idea or that dream.
But several years ago we ran into a group of guys that wanted to put a Bible museum in Dallas. And that’s really what started the journey. They wanted to know if we would help them acquire a facility. And it was actually a couple of years later when they mentioned an artifact that we could buy a good deal.
So we started buying artifacts for a museum. And as our collection grew we just felt a sense of responsibility that we needed to make sure that this happens. So it kind of grew over a period of time for our family especially as the collection grew.
So, it was an idea that we loved. Just because we have a love for God’s word and believe that it is foundational to our nation. It is to our lives and our business and we just want to encourage other people to consider it.
Well, the way that you guys have designed the museum, at least from the videos I saw in your presentation last fall, it looks amazing. I know people may think, “Oh, ok, Bible museum. We”re going to be walking into a bunch of old stuff.” The technology that you guys are putting into this is just incredible. I don’t even know how to describe it over the air.
A High Tech Interactive Museum
Yeah, this is going to be probably the most advanced technological museum that’s been built with brand new technology, patents are being filed for some of the technology that we will be using. Â We’ll have a digital docent, there’s a Disney-esque ride that will be on one of the floors where we’re going to fly people through Washington, D.C. showing them where 15 different sites in D.C. where scriptures are engraved on monuments. And so it’s, no offense to Grandma’s, it is not your grandma’s museum.
If you put a Bible that I can’t read under a glass case there’s only so much attention that it grabs me. But if the story that that book tells is an incredible story and our role is to be able to tell that story in engaging and in a creative way. And so we’re engaging some of the best design firms in the country to help us tell this book’s story. Because it is an incredible story.
And great storytellers as well. I was interviewing Dave Stotts the other day on his Drive Thru History America series and told him, “I must admit, I’m sitting there watching Steve Green give this presentation on the Bible museum and I can’t get away from you Dave.” I saw that part of the display for what Dave Stotts is going to do with it. So, also a great story but also great storytellers to reach people with.
Inspiring People To Read The Bible
Exactly. So the design firms that we’ve engaged have built out presidential libraries, to working with Disney. And they know how to tell a story. They know how to engage a person. Dave Stotts does our theater on the history floor that we fly him around the world where the significant historical events in the history of the Bible were lived out. And so he’s a great storyteller, brings some fun to it. And so that’s what we’re looking for is to really make this a very engaging, inviting, friendly, museum to tell this book’s story.
What’s the target date for opening the museum?
We are shooting for November 17th of this year. And that’s the plan, so it is coming fast. We have a lot of work to do, a lot of work has gone on already to prepare for it. So we’re very excited about getting open this November.
Alright, so the museum potentially in November. Â The ebook, The Bible in America, the best place for folks to go get that?
That they can get online at https://www.museumofthebible.org/ or in our hobby lobby stores we have that there as well. And that book was based on a survey we did for the museum because the question was if we build it will they come? And had 100 questions that we surveyed people all across the country and it is quite interesting what we found. Obviously, over 90 percent of the homes have a Bible that we’re probably less engaged with this book as we have ever been. And so we want to inspire people to engage with this book.
Setting A Great Example
Yeah, I was interested to hear some of George Barna” latest research on how roughly about 50 percent of the country says they have a Biblical worldview and that they think they’re engaging with it but only about 10 percent actually do when you really start questioning them.
So the significance and the importance of what you guys are doing with the book, with the museum, all of it just huge. Now, before I let you go, Steve, I”ll just throw this question at you, I am so amazed by you, Mart, the whole family, what y’all are doing with the different ministries. I”ve just got to ask you, man, what was it that your parents, if you could give me a 60 second answer on this, that you guys would be so successful in business but turn around and take that success and invest in these important things and be willing to be so philanthropic and fight so hard for these Biblical values? I mean, from the lawsuit you all had to deal with over the Obamacare stuff to the museum. I mean, it’s just phenomenal the influence your family is having. Is there any way for you to distill that down, how did they set such a great example?
I mean, from the lawsuit you all had to deal with over the Obamacare stuff to the museum. I mean, it’s just phenomenal the influence your family is having. Is there any way for you to distil that down? Â How did they set such a great example?
Well, there’s several things I could point to. But I’d have to point to, as my parents would, my grandmother, Marie, who is a pastor’s wife who gave when she had nothing to give. The epitome of the widow’s mite so when her dad has said he has given out of his wealth he has never out given his mother, my grandmother. Because she gave when she had nothing to give.
Jesus said of the woman that gave a little that she gave more. So while the wealthy were giving of their wealth he used a different measuring rod. So she is an example that my father uses in our family uses as a giving heart and that has been passed down and it is truly a joy to be able to give.
That’s powerful. That’s your next book right there, Giving in America. Hey, Steve, appreciate your time, appreciate your family, and all that you all do. Thanks for coming on.
You bet. Thank you, Rick.
Steve Green, folks. Stay with us. Â We”ll be right back with David and Tim Barton.
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Bible Bee Competition
Thanks for staying with us on WallBuilders Live! Special thanks to Steve Green and the whole Green family for what they’re doing with this museum of the Bible. And also Mart Green –had him on a week or so ago. Â I didn’t realize how much they were doing in so many different areas to get the Bible into the hands of people all over the world. But for us David, Tim-
Hey Rick, hang on a minute. You were talking to Steve and you mentioned that he was at the Bible Bee? What is a Bible Bee?
You’re exactly right. I mean, here again, this whole idea of getting people to study the Word of God more. This is a fun game show way that the folks are studying the Bible. Â You talk about amazing. Â These kids are memorizing hundreds of scriptures.
So they get up there and they compete. They have to say it exactly right. It”s like a Spelling Bee but it’s a Bible Bee. And they literally are reciting scripture, after scripture, after scripture, word for word perfectly. It’s incredible.
And what’s so cool is they’re getting it in their hearts while they’re competing. It’s big bucks too. They win like, I don’t know, a hundred thousand dollars in different age groups. It’s pretty phenomenal. But Steve was actually there speaking.
I think it’s 700 verses they memorize to be on the show. It’s an astounding amount of. That’s a lot of chapters and even books of the Bible that they have memorized to be on the show.
It’s now a television series too.
They do a national competition. And the one where I saw Steve doing this presentation was a few months back. Â I think it was in November and then they take some of the students that competed in that national competition and they invite them to compete on the television program. And the television program Kirk Cameron’s hosting it, the Benham brothers are on. It’s hilarious. They make it fun. They do crazy stuff on it as well.
But I’m telling you when you watch these kids recite God’s Word. And it’s not like you’re, I mean, people may be imagining in their minds right now, “Ok, these kids are getting up like robots, just blah, blah, blah.” No, I mean, they say it, and it’s, we talk about bringing stuff to life, they bring it to life.
You can tell that it’s in their heart, not just in their head. And it’s a powerful experience even to watch those kids recite. But the game show, they’re actually airing it. It’s a really really cool deal.
They’re doing it on Facebook Live. First time I’ve seen a full series program be done like this. And they reached a million people the first week. And I think the second week almost two million people. So it’s growing like crazy.
We’ll do links today at WallBuildersLive.com so it’s easy for people to get there. But I’m glad you mentioned that because it is a really cool deal that they’re doing.
Well, the Museum of the Bible is going to open later this year I think in November, thereabouts. And it’s in a cool place in D.C. it’s actually above the Department of Education.
I was there for the topping out when they laid the final girders up there. They’ve added several floors to the top. But when Steve said that this is the most technological museum that’s ever been built, he is exactly right.
I’ve seen the stuff they’ve got in there, it”s unbelievable. And by the way, there is cool stuff to see, as well. They’ve got the world’s biggest Bible, I think it is seventeen hundred pounds, is the world’s biggest Bible. They have dead sea scrolls.
But the storytelling that they do around this is just unbelievable. And so this has got to be a great place for people to plan to go. And by the way, he was talking about his grandmother, and I’ve got to say, there can’t be a better epitaph than what she would have when he said that she gave when she had nothing to give. What a great statement. That’s really what”s defined this family and now they’re giving all of us and the nation this museum of the Bible. What a what a wonderful blessing.
Phenomenal. Special thanks to Steve Green. Â Thanks to the whole Green family and Hobby Lobby and just what they’re doing for the nation and putting this museum in. It’s just a great blessing, just as David said. Thank you for listening today! You’ve been listening to WallBuilders Live!