Sabbatical 2017

Sabbatical 2017
Arc de Triumph

Monday, May 23, 2016

Israel 2016, Day 15

Today was an off-day. We took a tour of a biblical garden on the premises of our hotel and spent most of the time resting, getting caught up on laundry, chatting and trying to absorb everything we've seen and heard.

Some of the group took a bus into Jerusalem for the day. I decided to hang out and give my legs a rest. By the time dinner was served, the group was back together and we had a class in the evening to prepare for the Galilee segment. 

I've been traveling with a truly fine group of folks. We're a cross-section of what the church should look like. There  are younger individuals, folks older than me, teachers, servers, people of compassion, care-givers, ministers, pastors, humorists, and a variety of others. We've been getting along well for a group of strangers that are spending a month together on a bus and walking in the heat of the Mideast in Summer. 

I think one of the key elements in our harmony is that everyone has been making a real effort to treat each other as more important than themselves, deferring to one another and serving each other. It's not perfect and neither are any of us. It's certainly easier for a small group (twenty seven) to get along together for a short period of time than it is for a large group to go the distance. But, we'e been functioning well through cramped spaces, heat and exhaustion. All are situations that can make it easy for tensions to rise. It's a great snapshot of how good the church, in Christ, focusing on Him, can be.

That's Kiriath Jearim (1 Sam 6:21 ff) about a mile or two away

Here are some of the plants and flowers we see frequently.


 The biblical garden displayed a number of recreated sites we see in the Bible from time to time.
This wasn't in the garden, it's a well outside the reception hall. It's a reminder that, in a land as old as Israel, there are ancient structures to be found in your backyard.

This is a threshing floor. The grain would be spread out on the floor, then that wooden plank, a "sled" would be dragged over it to remove the chaff.

The first step in pressing olives would be to squeeze them and their pits with a heavy weight. This is a typical olive press.

The second step would be to take the mash produced by the first step, and apply more pressure to it.

Here's a later, Roman olive press

This is where wheat would be ground into flour by using the various rocks spread around the raised platform.

A synagogue reconstructed from a site in Galilee

That indentation, about 6" across, is a pestle used to grind small amount of grain or grapes.

An almond tree

A grape pressing floor

Tomorrow, we head for Caesarea, then Galilee.

1 comment:

  1. That grape pressing floor is where you would find Lucy and Ethel with their skirts pulled up stomping the grapes, right?