Museum of the Bible Director: 'We Won't Push Any One Religion'

Opening seven months from now in Washington, D.C. is the extraordinary Museum of the Bible that will offer visitors a one-of-a-kind Bible experience.

(Photo: Museum of the Bible)A rendering of the exterior of the Museum of the Bible.

Presumably to nip in the bud any false ideas that could be raised about the $500-million project, Tony Zeiss, executive director of the museum, told LifeZette that the museum is open to all people, not just Christians. In fact, Zeiss said the museum was "not a ministry" and that "we won't push any one religion."

However, officials said the 430,000-square-foot museum located three blocks from the Capitol will encourage all people to engage with the Bible.

"Our purpose is just to present the Bible," Zeiss said. "We believe the Bible will speak for itself."

The eight-floor museum will house some 40,000 biblical artifacts, which are the personal collections of the family of Steve Green, the president of Hobby Lobby.

The building will also house a 500-seat theater and restaurant serving first-century food from Israel to give visitors a literal taste of what life was like in biblical times.

There is also a garden where guests can immerse themselves in the Bible's rich history.

Zeiss said the museum will also feature a virtual reality facility where visitors can "walk through the Red Sea" and "look out across the Sea of Galilee" among other unique experiences.

Last December, Museum of the Bible President Cary Summers said they wanted to attract interenational visitors to the museum.

For his part, Museum of the Bible Vice President Jeff Schneider said the museum "won't be just about technology" but that they would be "constantly keeping the content fresh."

"We actually have hundreds of scholars that work with us on our content to keep it fresh and relevant because we have areas that [involve] the impact of the Bible — the Bible's impacting the world every day," he said.

At least seven other Bible exhibits can be found in the U.S.—but none as big as the museum rising in the nation's capital.

One of the most notable recent Christian attractions prior to the opening of the new Museum of the Bible is the giant Ark Encounter that opened in Kentucky last year to much fanfare. 

Ark Encounter is the brainchild of creationist Ken Ham and drew lots of media attention because of its life-size Noah's Ark.