New Source Material for Scholars
After the magnificent discovery at Nag Hammadi, scholars can only hope that the archeological excavations that are going on in the world, the manuscripts that continue to be sold on the antiquities market, and the serendipitous discoveries that have brought other ancient materials to light will uncover new materials to shed light on the birth of Christianity and the world of the Gnostics.
Were the Dead Sea Scrolls discovered accidentally?
Yes. As the story goes, a Bedouin shepherd whom some sources identify as Mohammed Ahmed el-Hamed discovered the first of the scrolls in 1947 when he tossed a rock into a cave to frighten out his missing animal and heard pottery shattering. Inside were several jars with linen-wrapped scrolls.
These recovered materials from antiquity are invaluable to scholars in whose lifetime the materials were first discovered, and to subsequent generations of scholars who will study them with new questions and theories. With archeological excavations continuing throughout the ancient world, scholars hope to find new source materials that will teach modern people about the origins and influences of the sacred and religious thinking of the ancients.