In a laboratory in Berlin, Germany, a team of researchers are poring over fragments of an ancient text. Previously on display in Washington, D.C.’s Museum of the Bible, the artifacts purport to be part of the famous Dead Sea Scrolls. But soon, they discover that something doesn’t quite add up.
The story began seven decades ago. Bedouin shepherds had stumbled upon a cache of scrolls hidden within a cave in Qumran, in what is now the West Bank, in 1946. And although they were initially told that the discovery wasn’t worth anything, they persevered. Eventually, the ancient documents were sold to a local antiques dealer named Khalil Eskander Shahin, known as Kando.
By 1947, the scrolls had made their way into the hands of Bible scholar Dr. John C. Trever. He noted the similarities between these artifacts and the Nash Papyrus, an ancient biblical text. And soon, archaeologists had caught on to their importance, eventually succeeding in relocating the mysterious caves.