By Ross k. Nichols

The Moses Scroll

Reopening the Most Controversial Case in the History of Biblical Scholarship

The Moses Scroll contains:

  • A chronological telling of the fascinating story based upon 19th-century reports
  • An assessment of the genuineness of Shapira’s scroll
  • A new transcription of the manuscript as seen through the eyes of the 19th century’s best Hebraists
  • A new translation of the sixteen leather strips

About THE Author

Ross K. Nichols

Ross K. Nichols is an ordained minister and teacher of the Hebrew Faith for United Israel World Union (UIWU), an educational, non-profit organization founded in 1944. Ross is also one of UIWU’s Vice Presidents. His weekly Bible lessons are live-streamed every Sabbath over the internet to a growing, global audience from the United Israel Center South in Saint Francisville, Louisiana. Archives of his popular classes are available on the UIWU website, Facebook, YouTube, and Apple Podcasts. Ross has toured Israel extensively, leading and co-leading tours for both Jews and Christians, and he has participated in archaeological projects at Mount Zion in Jerusalem, and at Biblical Tamar in the Aravah.

Available Worldwide NOW on Amazon

About the Book

Reopening the Most Controversial Case in the History of Biblical Scholarship

In 1878, a Jerusalem antiquities dealer named Moses Wilhelm Shapira acquired a curious biblical manuscript consisting of sixteen leather strips. The manuscript, written in ancient, Paleo-Hebrew contained what appeared to be a form of the Bible’s Book of Deuteronomy but with significant variations. It was allegedly discovered by Bedouin tribesmen around 1865, east of the Dead Sea, in a remote cave, high above the Wadi Mujib (biblical Arnon). Shapira believed that his manuscript was both ancient and authentic. In 1883, he presented his scroll to the leading scholars of Europe. Newspapers around the world covered the unfolding story as scholars debated the genuineness of the leather strips. Ultimately the scroll was deemed a forgery and Shapira the forger. However, beginning in 1947, ancient scrolls discovered in the Qumran caves near the Dead Sea lead us to ask—were the critics wrong? The Moses Scroll documents the details of the entire saga based upon what we know today including a chronological telling of the fascinating story based upon 19th-century reports; an assessment of the genuineness of Shapira’s scroll; a new transcription of the manuscript as seen through the eyes of the 19th-century’s best Hebraists; and the author’s own translation of the original sixteen leather strips with a commentary and notes.

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It is said to be as old as the Moabite Stone, which is generally supossed to date back to about 900 before the Christian era. – The Jewish Chronicles (August 3, 1883)

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The writing of the Shapira manuscript… is in favor of the genuineness of the document. – Christian David Ginsburg (British Bible Scholar – 1883)

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The mystery of a nineteenth-century discovery of a Dead Sea manuscript: a forgery, or the oldest Bible in the world? – John Marco Allegro  (Archaeologist & Dead Sea Scrolls Scholar – 1965)

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In brief, there is no longer any doubt that Shapira’s parchments were genuine …  the fate of the precious Shapira Strips is a warning to us not to let negators, no matter how great their reputations, perpetuate irreparable damage.  (Cyrus H. Gordon, Riddles in History, 1974)

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