A “tel” is a hill that’s a site for an archeological dig. About ten percent of Bet She’an has been unearthed, and the 10% we saw Thursday morning was outstanding. To put Bet She’an in its biblical context, King Saul and his son were hung on the hill above this city after the battle in which Saul killed himself by falling on his sword rather than being captured.
This enclave included a large bathhouse, Roman theater, mosaic street, enormous pillars that fell from the temple during an earthquake, and lots of other structures.
En route to Jerusalem we pulled into a rest top, where two of our women took a short camel ride. We also gave a lift to three young Israeli soldiers. The military were called into the City because of tonight’s expected unusual snow. Because people were supposed to either get into or out of the city by noon, local buses weren’t going their way, so they were heading in by foot. There are backhoes with buckets parked all around the city in preparation for the snow, which is supposed to begin about 11 tonight.
Near Jerusalem, our driver, Yaniv, put on a recording of “the Holy City.” I felt a deep sense of awe and wonder, and tears rolled down my cheeks. As the song ended, we pulled into Jerusalem and saw the golden Dome of the Rock to our left. We are in Jerusalem. Home of our Savior, or the prophets, kings, tribes … Incredible. The song that followed the Holy City was “We are standing on holy ground.” Amen!
At the Museum of Israeli architecture we saw a precise model of the old city in Jesus’ day scaled 1″ to 50′, I believe. The Old City encompassed only 10 acres, just a little over 3x the size of our property. That blew our minds. Key sights included Herod’s sarcophagus and the Dead Sea scrolls which had beautiful, precise and straight handwriting. We moved between heavy rain, a little hail or snow, and were COLD.
It is SNOWING – 4:15 am and I just looked out the window … 3-4 inches are covering the balcony, railings, and trees. It’s beautiful!