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Moses parts the Red Sea.
Moses parts the Red Sea.

BibleWalk and Living Bible Museum

Field review by the editors.

Mansfield, Ohio

"Ohio's only life-size wax museum" is the impressive centerpiece of this earnest attraction. It has over 300 wax figures in 100 religious scenes, and it was all built by the congregants of the adjacent nondenominational Diamond Hill Cathedral. People from the Ministry created the backgrounds, made the props and sewed the costumes, and a hairdresser from Columbus shaped the figures' hairstyles.

The dermatological trials of Job.
The dermatological trials of Job.

It's like walking through a wax Bible.

There are actually eleven exhibits spanning three buildings -- including a Walk of Parables; a Christian Art gallery; a "Dinner with Grace" Bible-themed dinner theater; and the Museum of Woodcarving, a divinely inspired work of Bible scenes moved here from Wisconsin in 2021 -- as well as six wax museums. The Old and New Testament each take an hour to tour, while the Museum of Christian Martyrs, the Heart of the Reformation, the Journeys of Paul, and the Kingdom of God each take a half-hour. These times are fixed because each scene has its own narration, mood music, and occasional character dialog, and the next scene doesn't turn on until the current one turns off. This controls the flow of traffic and ensures that everyone gets the full message, whether they want to race ahead to only the "good" parts or not.

Hairy guy.

Liz Taylor in a supporting role to King Solomon.
Liz Taylor in a supporting role to King Solomon.

We recommend the Old and New Testament tours. Some of the display have quick animations at dramatic moments: the stone rolls away from Jesus' tomb; Jairus' daughter's chest rises and falls as she's brought back to life; Lot's wife spins around to reveal that she's a pillar of salt, etc. Job is covered in boils resembling parasitic popcorn.

The museum concentrates on the cinematic, highly visual parts of the Bible, not exactly in chronological order, but "spiritually sequenced." You've seen some of it via DeMille and Victor Mature, but not exactly this way, and perhaps not with such sincerity.

Bible-inspired arts and crafts.
Bible-inspired arts and crafts.

The voices are provided by members of the congregation, and the narration -- we were told -- is by an ex-pro-baseball-player/jazz drummer who used to be an atheist but converted to Christianity when God healed his bum knee.

Jonah barfed up by the whale.

The 300+ dummies were purchased cheap from defunct wax museums, and it's fun to pick out the repurposed celebrities in the crowd scenes.

We recognized Clark Gable and Margot Kidder (which probably dates the dummies from the early 1980s) and Elizabeth Taylor was prominent in the tableau of King Solomon's temple. A wet-looking Jonah strutting onto the beach might have been Burt Lancaster in another life (and the whale has a soft, plush toy look...). Prince Charles of England was repurposed as Abel, while Prince Philip was an angel in Jesus's heavenly crew.

In contrast, the Museum of Christian Martyrs sounded promising, but its displays only depicted each martyr's moment of decision, not martyrdom, and so lacked the money-shot appeal of the Old Testament.

Our tour guide told us that a group from Niniva, one of the islands in the Tonga archipelago, came through the Biblewalk and were so excited to see the scene with Jonah (described in the Bible as running away from Niniva when he was swallowed by the whale) that the King of Niniva proclaimed that very day to be a day of fasting. And that day is now celebrated in Niniva every year!

We've been through a lot of wax museums, but never one with a story like that.

Also see: Walk-Thru Bibles | Museum of Woodcarving

BibleWalk and Living Bible Museum

500 Tingley Ave., Mansfield, OH
I-71 to the US 30 exit. US 30 west to the 5th Ave. exit. 5th Ave. north about a half-mile, then left on Tingley Ave. Diamond Hill Cathedral is on the left.
Summer Tu-Sa 10-5, hours and days vary off-season. (Call to verify) Local health policies may affect hours and access.
Adults $6.50/ $38 for all 7 tours
RA Rates:
The Best
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