Portrait of Michael Wise

Michael O. Wise, Ph.D., Ph.D.

Professor of Hebrew Bible and Ancient Languages

Ph.D., University of Minnesota

Ph.D., University of Chicago

M.Div., Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

B.A., University of Minnesota

Additional graduate study, University of Minnesota

Contact Information

Nazareth Hall, N3215
3003 Snelling Ave. N
St Paul, MN 55113


As Scholar-in-Residence, Dr. Wise's area of focus is ancient Judaism as a background to the rise of Christianity. He has studied the Semitic languages in order to immerse himself in rabbinic texts and in the Dead Sea Scrolls; he uses over twenty languages in his research.

Today Dr. Wise is an internationally recognized expert on the Dead Sea Scrolls. He frequently lectures on the Dead Sea Scrolls from coast to coast.

Dr. Wise and his work have been profiled in Time magazine, Vanity Fair, National Geographic, the New York Times, Chicago Tribune, and the Times of London, and on the old MacNeil/Lehrer News Hour, the BBC, A&E's "Mysteries of the Bible," and in many other media in the United States and abroad.

His The Dead Sea Scrolls Uncovered (1992) was an international bestseller, translated into seven foreign languages (German, Italian, Danish, French, Portuguese, Swedish and Dutch). Another work intended for general audiences, The Dead Sea Scrolls: A New Translation, appeared in 1996 and has likewise been translated into numerous foreign languages.

Dr. Wise is ordained as a minister in the Evangelical Free Church and regularly teaches adult Sunday School classes. He recently completed a second Ph.D., in the field of Classics (ancient Greek and Latin literature), at the University of Minnesota.

Specialty Areas

  • The Dead Sea Scrolls
  • Hebrew & Aramaic
  • New Testament Greek
  • Latin
  • Archaeology
  • Church history
  • Old Testament books: Chronicles, Ecclesiastes, Ezra-Nehemiah

Professional Accomplishments

Publications: Scholarly Books

Publications: Pastoral Books

  • Hiding Ever Since the Garden (With David Dupere and Cathy Wise; In preparation).

Publications: Scholarly Articles, Chapters in Books, Book Reviews (2010–present)

  • The Bar Kokhba Caves, the Qumran Cave Deposits and Judaean Book Culture (forthcoming).
  • "Papyrus Hever 30 and the Bar Kokhba Revolt." In Kipp Davis, et al., editors, The War Scroll, Violence, War and Peace in the Dead Sea Scrolls and Related Literature: Essays in Honour of Martin G. Abegg on the Occasion of His 65th Birthday, pp. 364–389. STDJ 115. Leiden: Brill, 2015.
  • "Murabbacat and the First Revolt." In Joel L. Kraemer, et al., editors, Pesher Nahum: Texts and Studies in Jewish History and Literature from Antiquity Through the Middle Ages, Presented to Norman Golb, pp. 293-315. SAOC 66. Chicago: Oriental Institute, 2012.
  • "Archives and Libraries." Pages 371–375 in Dictionary of Early Judaism. Edited by J.J. Collins and D. Harlow. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2010.
  • "Bar Kokhba Letters." Pages 418–421 in Dictionary of Early Judaism. Edited by J.J. Collins and D. Harlow. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2010.
  • "Crucifixion." Pages 500–501 in Dictionary of Early Judaism. Edited by J.J. Collins and D. Harlow. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2010.
  • "The Origins and History of the Teacher's Movement." Pages 92–122 in The Oxford Handbook of the Dead Sea Scrolls. Edited by T.H. Lim and J.J. Collins. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010.
  • Review of J.J. Collins. Beyond the Qumran Community: The Sectarian movement of the Dead Sea Scrolls. Catholic Biblical Quarterly 74 (2012) 123–125.

Professional Presentations and Lectures (2010–present)

  • "The Dead Sea Scrolls and Second Temple Judaism." At the Upper Midwest Regional Meeting of the American Schools of Oriental Research, St. Paul, MN. April 2010.
  • "What Are the Dead Sea Scrolls and Why Are They So Important?" At the symposium entitled, "Puzzles of Antiquity: The Meaning of the Dead Sea Scrolls for the Bible, Judaism, and Christianity." Sponsored by the University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN. April 2010.
  • "The Secrets of the Copper Scroll." Science Museum of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN. May 2010.
  • "The Dead Sea Scrolls: What Are They?" Hill Museum & Manuscript Library, St. John's University, Collegeville, MN. May 2010.
  • "Finding Joy." Honors Address, in litteris fideque. Concordia University, St. Paul, MN. August 2011.
  • "The Dead Sea Scrolls: Words That Changed the World." University of Wisconsin–River Falls, WI. September 2011.
  • "Is God Ever Silent?" a 3-part series in chapel, University of Northwestern – St. Paul, MN. Nov. 29-Dec. 1, 2011.
  • "The Bar Kokhba Caves, the Qumran Cave Deposits and Judaean Book Culture." At the international symposium entitled, "The Dead Sea Scrolls, Innovative Technologies, New Material." Sponsored by the University of Agder in Cooperation with the Schoyen Collection and the Jeselsohn Epigraphic Center for Jewish History. Hosted by the NLA University College, Staffeldtsgate, Oslo, Norway. June 2015
  • "The Biblical Period." At Loving God With Your Mind, University of Northwestern, St. Paul, MN. February 2016.

Additional Scholarly Activities (2010–present)

  • Served as content expert and helped to design and present the Science Museum of Minnesota's exhibiton of the Dead Sea Scrolls entitled, "The Dead Sea Scrolls: Words That Changed the World," running March 12–October 24, 2010.
  • Lecturer, Tours of Biblical Lands, 2003–present. Working with KTIS Radio Network and University of Northwestern - St. Paul tours. Tours have traveled in Israel (7 tours), Greece (3), Turkey (3), Italy (2), Czech Republic, Germany and Switzerland.
  • Appointed to the Board of Advisors for the MacLaurin Institute, September 2011.
  • Appointed to the Board of Truefaced, November 2011.

A complete list of publications and presentations by Dr. Wise is available upon request.

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