Of course, they have been ripped off, they are the most gullible people on the planet. 

Courtesy of CNN:

Days after the Museum of the Bible acknowledged purchasing forged Dead Sea Scrolls, more American Christians say they now suspect that they, too, have bought pricey fakes.

Steven Ortiz, a professor of archeology at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas, said that he believes several fragments purchased by the seminary since 2010 may not be authentic.

“We suspect that maybe three of our 10 fragments are forgeries,” Ortiz said. “The seminary trustees are asking: What are we doing with our scrolls?”

Ortiz said his seminary has sent eight of its fragments to the Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und -prüfung (BAM), the same German laboratory that tested the Museum of the Bible’s fragments. The test results were inconclusive with three of the seminary’s fragments, Ortiz said, and they are awaiting further results.

Yeah, I’m guessing that this guy is going to receive some very bad news when these tests are complete. 

Between 2002-2012, 70 fragments purportedly part of the famous Dead Sea Scrolls were sold, many to American evangelicals, according to Norwegian scholar Arstein Justnes. Some of those scraps have reportedly cost millions. Justnes believes that 90% may be forgeries, based on analysis of the text and handwriting.

For years, Justnes and other scholars have been calling on the Greens and other evangelicals to reveal how and from whom they acquired the Dead Sea Scroll fragments. In an interview before the Bible museum opened last Fall, Steve Green told CNN that wasn’t sure who sold his family the Dead Sea Scroll fragments.

“There’s been different sources, but I don’t know specifically where those came from.” A spokesperson said Green was not available for comment about the German test results.

“They should tell us where they bought them and show their papers,” Justnes said. “The physical tests are super sexy and what the public wants to know, but without an object’s provenance, it is just unethical. And it helps the illicit market.”

There is a reason that conmen target very religious people, and why politicians visit local churches. 

People who accept stories of miraculous events based on faith alone are highly susceptible to manipulation by those looking to take advantage of the gullible. 

As an Athiest, there is a part of me that wants to stand back and just mock these people for being such suckers, 

But another part of me wants desperately to educate these people so that their naivete does not negatively impact their families, their community, and even the country at large.