Friday, July 04, 2008

West Bank Highlights

We spent some time in and out of the West Bank Palestinian area. Our first stop was Jericho which is believed to be the oldest city on earth. It is an oasis in the midst of the desert and the city is currently controlled by the Palestinian authority. There were a lot of sheep and goat herders in the area and the major agricultural product were dates which we learned are considered "wild honey" in antiquity. So when John the Baptist lived in the wilderness and ate wild honey (Mark 1:6) his diet consisted of locusts and dates. Julie and Alison here pose with a camel in Jericho who had come into town to get a drink and hosed off.

The next photo is me at the Dead Sea after we had used some Dead Sea mud to exfoliate or something like that. I wanted to see what I would look like with a Lincoln Beard I think it looks pretty good. The one problem is that my beard would not naturally come in so dark. The Dead Sea water was pretty cool just underneath the surface, but getting to that water in a buoyant state was difficult.

The final photo is of Julie inside Cave #1 at Qumran. This is the cave that a Palestinian shepherd boy found the first part of the Dead Sea Scrolls. These were ancient texts of many parts of the Torah or Old Testament and they are so important because the words in these scrolls that date back to the time of Christ are the same as our Torah today. They also did include the non-Canon Apocrypha which were Jewish texts that were not included in the Christian Bible during times of the early church. This was not an easy climb to reach this cave up steep talus slopes, but it was worth the effort.



No comments: