There are many false re-counts of history, mainly about who wrote and hid the scrolls. We have done extensive research for months, sifting through the "narrative" about the Essene cult group that the mainstream sources have tried to sell us on. We know the full truth is still being hidden from us, but this is what we have learned as the Spirit of Truth has guided us. (1 John 2:27)
SCROLLS FOUND IN 1947
Two shepherd boys were herding their goats along the Dead Sea. One of the goats ran up the cliffside and into a Qumran cave. The boys trekked up the cliffside, until they were a stone's throw away from the cave entrance. They started hurling rocks up into the cave, with hopes that the goat would come running out. All of a sudden they heard the sound of pottery breaking! One of their rocks had hit something!
The next day they came back with a light and cautiously crept into the dark cave. They found a broken jar made of clay, with pieces of old scrolls in and around it. They had just discovered real hidden treasure - the first Dead Sea Scrolls! They found 7 complete scrolls and 20 small pieces made from animal skin and papyrus.
The shepherd boys tried to sell the scrolls but no one thought they were valuable, until a merchant recognized the old Hebrew writing and knew that they must be very special. Very quickly the word spread of the great discovery!
Over the next 10 years, archaeologists searched over 600 caves. They dug up over 900 scroll pieces that were in Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek. They found pieces of almost every book of the Bible - but they were 1,000 years older than any copies that had been seen before! They even found whole scrolls that hadn't fallen apart - like the nearly complete book of Isaiah! It was 24 feet long!
It’s hard to know the exact truth about what happened to all the scrolls that were found. Some of them were stolen by the archeologists. Some of them were sold to wealthy corrupt men. Some of them went to the Rockefeller Museum and were later illegally removed, or “stolen” as some would say (that’s a different story for another time). Some of them were taken to labs to be cleaned, studied, and translated - those are the ones we can read today!
CLEANING AND TRANSLATING
Only 8 scholars were allowed to clean and translate the scrolls. Since most of the scrolls were in fragments, they had to be pieced together like a puzzle. The scrolls were so fragile that it took over 40 years to clean off the dirt, piece the fragments together, and start translating them into English. People all over the earth were waiting to read the scrolls, but the men in charge were blocking the release of the scrolls to the public. In 1991 the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA) hired 100 more scholars to speed up the translation and publication of the Dead Sea Scrolls. Yahuah worked another miracle and by 2001 most of the scrolls were published and available to read in certain libraries. By 2011 (many lawsuits and court hearings later) most of the scrolls were available on the internet!
WHO HID THE SCROLLS?
Some scholars think that a group of people called the Essenes copied and wrote all the scrolls, and then hid them in nearby caves when the Romans attacked in 68AD. This has been the mainstream narrative that almost everyone has accepted. A few archeologists have publicly stated that they don’t believe the Essenes existed at all, and that Priests and Scribes from the temple in Jerusalem hid the scrolls to protect them from the Romans. Those archeologists have been personally attacked, and had their reputations destroyed because they had an opposite belief than the mainstream narrative. Hmmmm… sounds familiar.
BUT, we think there may be another option!
As we continue studying and reading the Bible and other Scrolls, it is being revealed to us that perhaps Yah taught his people how to preserve and protect His scriptures throughout history. We see quite a few examples of special documents being hidden in clay jars - just like the ones found holding the Dead Sea Scrolls!
In the Testament of Moses, Moses tells Joshua to “preserve the writings in jars and put them in the place which Yahuah has chosen from the beginning of the creation of the world.” (Testament of Moses section 1) Could he be talking about the Qumran caves? We say absolutely!
Jeremiah tells Baruch to preserve important documents in clay jars for protection: "This is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: Take these documents, both the sealed and unsealed copies of the deed of purchase, and put them in a clay jar so they will last a long time." (Jeremiah 32:14)
Yah told Ezra to publish 24 books for the worthy and unworthy, but to hide and preserve 70 “secret” books for the wise. (4 Esdras 14:26) Did Ezra know to hide the secret books in the caves where the other books were kept?
Even Paul describes believers as clay jars, holding God’s light and life...
But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. (2 Corinthians 4:7)
DO THE SCROLLS FULFILL PROPHECY?
Here's a few verses to help you decide! (There's so many more!)
“My son Methuselah, preserve these books from my hand, and see that you deliver them to the generations of the world. I have given wisdom to you and to your children, and those children to come, that they may give it to their children for generations. This wisdom namely that passes their understanding. And those who understand it should not sleep, but should I listen that they may learn this wisdom, and it shall please those that eat thereof better than good food.” - Enoch 82:1-3
”The Most High spoke to me, saying, "Make public the twenty-four books that you wrote first and let the worthy and the unworthy read them; but keep the seventy that were written last, in order to give them to the wise among your people. For in them is the spring of understanding, the fountain of wisdom, and the river of knowledge." And I did so.” - 2 Esdras (4 Ezra) 14:45-48
“And the wise men shall seek truth and they and their sons will understand the words of this book…” -Enoch 100:6
"But as for you, Daniel, conceal these words and seal up the scroll until the end of time. Many will go back and forth and search anxiously [through the scroll], and knowledge [of the purpose of God as revealed by His prophets] will [greatly] increase.” - Daniel 12:4 (Amplified version)
“Then I know another mystery, that books will be given to the righteous and the wise to produce joy and righteousness and much wisdom. And to them the books shall be given, and they shall believe them and rejoice over them...” - Enoch 104:12-13
Scrolls are still being discovered - the most recent one was found in 2017!
MANY of the Dead Sea Scrolls are mentioned in in our modern Bible, here just a few references (some of them have not been found or perhaps were stolen):
The book of wars of the Lord (Numbers 21:14)
The Annals of Jehu (2 Chron 20:34)
The Treatise of the Book of the Kings (2 Chron 24:27)
The Book of Records, Book of the Chronicles of Ahasuerus (Esther 2:23, 6:1)
Acts of Solomon (1 Kings 11:41)
The Sayings of Hozai (2 Chron 33:19)
The Chronicles of David (1 Chron 27:24)
The Chronicles of Samuel, Nathan, and Gad (1Chron 29:29)
Samuel’s Book (1Sam 10:25)
The Records of Nathan the Prophet (2 Chron 9:29)
The Prophesy of Ahijah the Shilonite (2 Chron 9:29)
The Treatise of the Prophet Iddo (2 Chron 13:22)
The Book of Jasher (Josh 10:13, 2 Sam 1:18)
Enoch (Jude 1:6,14-15, quoted throughout the whole bible - even by Yahusha)
Today [most of] the scrolls reside in the Shrine of the Book in Jerusalem’s Israel Museum.
Many of these ancient books help us to understand what is being said in the Bible and provide added details and "bonus" content! If portions of these texts conflict with Scripture, it is, of course, best to toss that information out. Where they agree and/or elaborate in a way that lines up with and confirms Scripture, we may generally treat it as trustworthy, providing useful insight that leads us closer to understanding WHO God is and how He has commanded us to live our lives. Ultimately our hope is that these books lead you closer to our Savior Yeshua, as they have done for us!