언론보도

home > 소식 > 언론보도

코리아타임즈 / 1998년 11월 9일 / Salvation of Man Thru Biblical Archeology

관리자 │ 2021-07-16

HIT

164

The Abraham Park and Kenneth Vine Collection


Authentic archeological relics of ancient Israel, Egypt, Philistine and other neighboring civilizations have been assembled according to Christian teachings from the Bible and the collection has been dedicated as the permanent exhibit of a new religious museum in Seoul.


The Abraham Park and Kenneth Vine Collection was opened last Saturday in Oryu-dong, western Seoul with some 2,000 relics from the Orient, claiming itself as the first museum of Biblical Archeology in Korea.


The rare ancient religious relics, some of which date back to B.C. 4000 are classified according to Biblical motifs in the Old and New Testaments that the museum offers as expressions of the Salvation of Man.


"The sole purpose and message of this museum is to deepen man's understanding that God remains the same, even beyond the limits of time and space," said Kim Hyung-il, chief curator and minister of the Pyung Kang Cheil Presbyterian Church near the museum.


The birth of this museum was made possible by Kenneth Vine who unconditionally donated all his precious and sacred biblical artifacts to his longtime associate Rev. Abraham Park, the founder of the Pyung Kang Church. Vine, former president of Loma Linda University in California, who dedicated his entire life to the development of Biblical archeology, donated his collection to the Korean Christian leader out of his deep respect for Korea in which the growth of Christianity is almost unprecedented, said the chief curator.


The museum consists of three theme rooms which chronologically shed light on the trials and tribulations of Israelites' pursuit of God's love.


The focus of the first theme room, the Creation of God, is the earthenware pottery from Canaan, Cyprus, Mycenae and Phoenicia. They are represented by bowls, jugs, juglets, jars, cooking pots, lamps and seals. The earliest pottery in Palestine appeared during the Neolithic period in 6000 B.C. The early hand-made pottery was gradually replaced by wheel-turned pieces in 3000 B.C.


These items reflect the relationship between God and man in the Old Testament. In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. And later, He created man from dust to serve as the vessel of His spirit. God invites such a man into the warmth of His lamp light, to carry on the work of enlightening the sinful world. These people He places with love like a seal over His heart.


Accordingly, ancient seals and stamps constitute an integral part of the introductory collection following the inspiration from the line, God uses His chosen people as a seal for the progressive fulfillment of His Will.


Stamps in the Biblical period were mainly used for identification purposes and were pressed into soft wax to seal letters. On display are Mesopotamian cylindrical seals, Egyptian scarabs and seals of the Byzantine and Crusader period.


The second theme, the Fall of Man, represents the years in the wilderness under Egyptian and Roman rule when God forsook the Israelites for turning away from Him and toward idolatry and evil.


In this context, the civilizations of the Egyptians and Romans are used to highlight God's punishment of the corrupted Israelites by enslaving them under the two foreign nations. The Egyptians believed in the eternity of human life in contrast to the Christian belief that immortality can only be obtained through Jesus Christ.


On exhibit are Egyptian funeral artifacts such as mirras, masks and figurines intended for burial alongside the deceased as well as goddess figurines from the Syro-Mesopotamian region and other idolatry relics. In particular, the museum is the only institution that exhibits two authentic mirras from 1000 B.C.: one for the falcon, the bird which was revered as the guardian deity of the Horus by ancient Egyptians and the other for an infant of royal descent.


Meanwhile, even though the Romans were acclaimed for being a pious God-fearing nation, in truth, they were the capital and origin of Humanism against God as opposed to god-centered Hebraism. Rome was the headquarters for all trade in items of luxury and whose attendant wealth caused it to sink into gross immoral conduct, noted the curator.


Based on this understanding of Rome from a theological point of view, gems and glass wares from the early Roman Empire have been amassed.


Finally, there is redemption and salvation with the coming of the messiah as in the third theme, titled, "The Recovery."


Exhibited as the evidence of man's ascent to God's side are jewels, scriptures and some golden items which are perceived to symbolize God's steadfast love for humanity, as well as the value of His love and salvation which all of the world's riches could neither equal nor buy.


The Holy city, the new Jerusalem, as a country of their own is described through reference to precious jewels in the Bible. A bright and precious stone has four unique and distinct properties that represent the symbols of faith, hope, love and sincerity.


The mandate of the collection is to shed light on the Salvation History by reconstructing the struggles of the Israelites through ancient archeological relics, but the museum also serves as representative of the entire civilization of the ancient Orient, said the head curator.


"By bringing together relics from outside the Land of Milk and Honey, the museum also offers a more dynamic understanding of Oriental history through the perspectives of non-Christian neighboring peoples," Rev. Kim added.


For instance, in addition to the authentic Egyptian mirras, its collection includes clay tablets inscribed in Mesopotamian Cuneiform, Greek papyrus and four-thousand years old churns that were used to make butter from horse milk. Byzantine golden coins, cosmetic utensils and "core-formed" glass perfume bottles from the Roman Empire also merit attention as chief achievements of each period's civilization.


Call 02-686-9496 for details. By Choe Yong-shik Staff Reporter




이전글 한국일보 / 1998년 11월 8일 / 평강성서유물박물관 개관
다음글 기독신보 / 1998년 11월 13일 / 잃어버린 시간을 찾아서