July 8, 2016 : By Liberty University News Service
Dr. Randall Price, distinguished research professor at Liberty University and curator of the Liberty Biblical Museum, was recently recognized by Israel’s Ministry of Tourism for making his 100th trip to Israel. Price was presented with a plaque and named a “true friend of Israel” and an “ambassador of goodwill for tourism.”
Since coming to Liberty in 2007, Price has been teaching an annual seminar in Israel and has led Liberty students through sites in Israel, Jordan, Turkey, and Greece. As a professional archaeologist, Price has also taken Liberty students and faculty on archaeological excavations at Qumran and Jerusalem. Students often get to meet and talk with native Israelis (both Jewish and Arab), Palestinians, and Messianic Jews (who believe in Jesus as their Messiah).
Price has also amassed artifacts from his trips that he has placed in the Liberty Biblical Museum located in the Jerry Falwell Library. The museum takes guests on a 5,000-year journey through Jewish history, showcasing the historical and cultural background of Scripture. The museum, featuring over 2,000 items, is open to faculty, staff, students, and the general public.
Price said that while at Liberty he has been able to advance the support of the modern State of Israel and to strengthen students’ understanding of God’s plan for the Jewish people.
“One of the most ideal ways of doing this is showing students firsthand the land of the Bible and introducing them to the people of the land,” he said.
Price said that receiving this recognition was a “great honor.”
“This award goes along with Liberty’s own commitment to Israel,” he said. “I feel as a professor that in taking my students with me on these trips, that I have honored what Liberty is dedicated to in the first place.”
Rising junior Casey Olson, who went on Price’s most recent trip in June with nine other students, said the group covered every part of the biblical map, including sites in Judea and Samaria.
“The trip to Israel was an absolute privilege and exceeded all of my expectations,” Olson said. “I was able to visit sites I never dreamed I would see, and I now know about their incredibly rich biblical significance and history.”
Price plans to return to Israel with students in December, where another excavation at a cave south of Qumran (the site where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered) is planned. He also has a tour planned for June 8-24, 2017, and welcomes Liberty alumni, current students, and faculty to join him.