Dead Sea Scrolls: The Texts and Their Meanings

One Thursday, September 30, 6:30 p.m. and One Tuesday, October 12, 6:00 p.m. | Museum of Natural Science, 1 Hermann Circle Drive Two Wednesdays, October 20 and 27, Noon Compass Bank, Second Floor, 2001 Kirby at San Felipe

The Dead Sea Scrolls, which were discovered in 1947 in caves on the shore of the Dead Sea and are considered to be the most important manuscript discovery of the twentieth century, will be shown at Houston’s Museum of Natural Science during the fall of 2004. In conjunction with the exhibition, the Houston Seminar offers a series of talks and a private tour of the exhibition.

Thursday, September 30: Martin Abegg, co-director of the Dead Sea Scrolls Institute, Langley, British Columbia and chair of the department of religious studies, Trinity Western University, British Columbia, will discuss the discovery of the scrolls and the controversies and intrigue surrounding their publication, conservation, and control. The talk is in the Imax theater.

Tuesday, October 12: On a private tour of the exhibition, which includes many of the Dead Sea Scrolls and artifacts from Qumran, the community that produced them, we will be accompanied by Matthias Henze, associate professor of religious studies at Rice University and a prominent expert on the scrolls. We will meet in the Herzstein Gallery.

Wednesday, October 20: Matthias Henze will explore the Essene community at Qumran, which created the Dead Sea Scrolls. He will discuss the community’s structure, leadership, and theology as they are revealed in the Essenes’ own writings and in descriptions by the Jewish historian Josephus.

Wednesday, October 27: Matthias Henze will talk with us about Jesus and the Dead Sea Scrolls. There are no New Testament figures in the scrolls and they have no direct relationship to Christianity, yet we can learn much about Christianity and Christ by studying the scrolls.



Registration for fall 2018 is ongoing. You may register online, by mail, or by phone with a credit card. 


If you are interested in traveling with the Houston Seminar to Natchez October 26-29, 2019 you may access the itinerary, trip cost, and registration documents here.

If you are interested in traveling to Virginia in the spring of 2019, please call the registrar at 713.666.9000 to place your name on a list. Please see Terms and Conditions for "travel list" policy. 


Please note a date in the Mid-term Elections course has changed from that published in the brochure. The course will meet the first two Mondays, October 29 and November 5 as planned, but will meet Tuesday, November 13 instead of Monday, November 12. 


Also note Art Underground: Carlos Cruz-Diez at the Cistern on Wednesday, November 14 is FULLY SUBSCRIBED. A second session has been added and will meet Monday, November 12 from 2:00-3:30 P.M. Registrations are being accepted for November 12. You may register online, or by phone.


Who Gets to Vote: Challenges for the 2020 Elections?
Speaker: Dale Ho, director of the American Civil Liberties Union Voter Rights Project
Monday, November 19, 6:30-8:00 P.M.
Location to be announced


Register today!


For additional information about any of our courses, to register offline, or to add your name to our mailing and/or email lists, please contact our adminstrator at  or phone 713.666.9000.