The Bible World is a permanent Bible Exhibition of the Bible Society of India located in the Head Quarters premises on M. G. Road. It welcomes visitors from all walks of life for a visit. Visitors get the opportunity to supplement their understanding and knowledge about the history of the Bible, translations of Bible into different languages. Research scholars doing their studies on Bible and language visit this exhibition for their research work as the source of information. Children find their area of interest about the Bible such as playing on the touch screen computers and looking at the postal stamps containing the Bible stories.
This section exhibits the history of the Bible i.e., how the Bible came to us. A chart showing the origin of the cuneiform writings and its expressions on clay is preserved. Picture of clay tablets inscribed with the text of the Babylonian chronicle of the chief events in the reigns of the kings who ruled over Babylon during BC 744-669 is shown.
The picture of a black stone pillar kept in the exhibition on which Hammurabic code (282 laws often compared with the Law of Moses) engraved on the black stone in cuneiform writing dating 2000 BC can be seen. This section contains an illustration of a Hebrew parchment scroll intended for the use in synagogue.
One can see a number of antiques Bibles dating from 1560 onwards. One of these is the Bishops’ Bible. It is a large print pulpit size Bible. It was printed in London in 1585 by Christopher Baker and published by the Church of England. This Bible was used as the basis for the King James Version of the Bible completed in 1611. The Bishops’ Bible has numerous engraving pictures and it is considered as a landmark in printing achievement. It is considered as a rare piece of the printed Bible because today very few copies of this Bishops’ Bible are available in the world.
Bible in English language to be kept and for use on the pulpit printed in the year 1800 is exhibited in this exhibition hall. The full Bible is divided into six volumes (Old Testament in four volumes and New Testament in two volumes).
Each volume weighing 12 kgs and of size measuring 18”X14”.
The Bible is embellished with engravings pictures and designs.
It is the Parallel Bible in eight ancient languages kept in the exhibition hall. This Bible was printed and published in the year 1831. One can read the whole Bible having eight languages on each page of the Bible. The languages are; Hebrew, Anglican, Greek, Latin, German, Gallic, Italian, and Spanish. The beauty of this Bible is that this Bible was printed about 200 years before when the printing technology was not so developed as of today.
The Bible Society of India has translated the Bible into many Indian languages for the people of India to read the Scripture in their own languages. There are 1652 languages and dialects spoken and read by the people in our country, India. Efforts have been made to translate the Bible in full, the New Testament and portions of the Bible into various Indian languages and dialects. One copy each of the Indian language Bibles have been displayed here for the visitors to see. Some of them are antique Bibles. Scholars doing research on language find the change in a particular language during a span of time.
Efforts have been made for several years to collect the Bibles of foreign languages and a copy of each of the Bible of more than 200 languages of the world have been exhibited here in this exhibition. Visitors from abroad and others who are interested in the foreign language Bibles are visiting regularly to read and supplement their understanding and knowledge about history of translation and history of the printed Bible. Out of all these Bibles, most of them are antique Bibles which are rarely available for reading purpose.
It is one of the interesting sections in the Exhibition. Postal stamps on the stories of the Bible both from Old Testament, New Testament and General Events related to history of the Bible. Postal stamps released by various countries of the world based on the Bible are collected, developed with caption and Bible verse, laminated and exhibited in this exhibition. For example; the postal stamp with a title “In the beginning God…….” was issued by USA in commemoration of the Apollo 8 mission in December 1968. On this stamp one can have a view of the first photograph of the earth taken from deep space.
The country Guyana has released the postal stamp on the story of Joseph. It is so designed, that if 24 stamps are joined together, one can read the story of Joseph as mentioned in Genesis chapter 35-42. It creates interest among the children to read more stories from the Bible.
The State of Oman has released the postal stamp based on Mark chapter 14 verse 36 in which the picture of Jesus with the cup in Gethsemane has been portrayed.
The kingdom of Yemen has released several postal stamps with various stories of Jesus from the Bible. These postal stamps were released on 5th anniversary of Imam’s mission to Pope Paul VI in Jerusalem 1964-69 such as;
Jesus calls the first disciples. Luke 5:1-10.
Jesus walks on the water as mentioned in Mark 6:47-50
The gospel according to St. Matthew and St. John can be read in one page each with or without the help of a magnifying lens are exhibited in this exhibition. These are imported from Hong Kong Bible Society, mounted and placed for visitors to have a look and reading purpose. These letters are so designed that the entire gospel has a look of the face of Jesus. Visitors visiting this exhibition are keen to read their own favourite verse from the gospel without the help of the magnifying glass.
Visitors, after seeing the “One Page Book-The Bible” have given their comments like “awesome”, “un-believable”, and fantastic”, etc. . The printed Bible which has the volume of minimum 1200 pages is available in this exhibition to read in one page. This one page includes the complete text of the Old and New Testaments in King James Version. The text in this document consists of 8,63,302 words including 35,21,097 individual letters. This one page Book is as much as an artwork as it is a readable document.
Bartholomaus Ziegenbalg from Denmark came to India and started his work with the Tranquebar Mission in Tamilnadu in the year 1706. He worked hard for five years and the first part of the New Testament in Tamil language was published in the year 1714. The Royal monogram of the king of Denmark is seen in the picture.
The full New Testament in Tamil language was published in the year 1719. His Old Testament translation was completed by another missionary Benjamin Schultze in the year 1728.
The Tercentenary of Tranquebar Mission in India (1706-2006) was celebrated by Tamil Evangelical Lutheran Church and a postal stamp in commemoration of this Tercentenary celebration was released by Government of India.
Hand-written Bible in various Indian languages is displayed here in this exhibition. The hand-written full Bible in Mizo language written by Mr. Thangmawia from Aizawl in the year 2001 can be seen. The full Bible written in beautiful hand-writing by Mr. Thangmawia without any mistake or over-writing.
The different texts of the full Bible in different Indian languages written by different persons have been displayed in this exhibition.
Tamil New Testament written by Mr. Immanuel Henry is also displayed in this exhibition.
After witnessing these hand-written Bibles, many visitors have been encouraged and motivated to start writing in their own mother tongue.
Bible in two languages on each page has been published by different National Bible Societies. One copy of each publication have been collected and exhibited for the visitors to see and read.
The Bible Society of India has published Diglot Bible in four Indian languages with English as the corresponding language. These are:
English – Telugu
English – Tamil
English – Hindi
English - Malayalam
Any one visits this exhibition will get the opportunity to look at the rare variety of Bibles from all over the world under one roof.
Bible has been translated into different Indian Languages. But one translated Indian language Bible has gone, during span of time, through many editions.
For example, Bible in Odia language, first, was translated by Dr. William Carey in the year 1811, but it has gone through several times of revision and variety of editions of the same Oriya language Bible have been published by the Bible Society of India. Odia Bible of 22 editions has been preserved in the exhibition for the visitors to see.
This model has attracted many visitors as it highlights the places of importance in the history of the Bible. Visitors can have a clear picture of the location of places relating to the life and ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ
For children: Children, when they visit this exhibition, get excited to play with the touch screen computer meant for them. This kiosk contains the stories from the Bible, songs and music to learn, Bible games and quiz etc. It helps the children to enhance their Biblical knowledge. Number of children from different Sunday Schools and Vacation Bible Schools have already visited and benefited
Here is another Kiosk meant for the adults which has animated Bible stories, Bible Atlas, Bible Encyclopedia, Time Travel etc.
Another interesting exhibit for the visitor is a chart showing the chronology of the Bible from the Creation of the world to the Birth of Jesus Christ with events and dates.
Dr. William Carey, one of the pioneers of Bible translators, came to India and felt the need of translation of Bible into different Indian languages. He, along with others, translated Bible into more than forty Indian languages. Visitors can go through all his hard work, his hand-written letters and photographs of his place of stay, his work place and Serampore College founded by him etc.
We all are acquainted with printed Bibles, Bible in audio and electronic format. But here in this exhibition visitors can find hand-written Bibles in various Indian languages. One Bible in Mizo language written by Mr. R.Thangmawia and the Photostat copy of Tamil hand-written Bible by Mr. Immanuel Henry are exhibited here in this exhibition which has inspired many visitors and motivated them to start writing the Bible in their own languages.
A Qumran fragment from the Book of Isaiah of 1st and 2nd century B.C. and some pages from Codex Sinaiticus of 4th century A.D. and many other ancient documents are displayed here in this exhibition for visitors to enlighten the knowledge about the history of the Bible.
Monday – Friday 9.30 am – 05.00 pm