God bless you so mightily today; you back in the states are experiencing 'today' while we are very ready to go to bed. We had a longgggggggggggg day today as we went South to the lower part of Israel, (from the Galillee part) and toured five places today! Some were fairly uneventful, but some very good sights today as well! We will go easier tomorrow, and then start our Jerusalem tour for about three day, on Saturday. We want to be down by the Wailing Wall on Shabbatt (Saturday or Sabbath).
We started out by driving right by Tel Gezer on our way to another site, so we decided to turn in. It was very worthwhile. It is a fairly new archeological dig, even with some Americans digging as we toured, but look at some of these things. The gate to the city (first photo) was built by Solomon. This city was conquered by Pharoah, king of Egypt, the given to his daughter who was Solomon's wife. The second photo is one of the pillars that were raised at the temple of the city. They appear to be raised to the Pan god, the god of Fertility! Do you see why Solomon and Israel fell!?!?!
Then, enroute to our next stop, we ran across the local Cafe Cafe! Oh, what a great coffee shoppe it is! Thay have the greatest iced coffees, very close to a good one in Harlan, Indiana (but not quite), and got our daily fill of excellent booster liquid! Cheryl was happy!
Then we were off to Tel Ashkelon! It was fairly uneventful, except for the ability to see the oldest arched gate in the world. If you remember, I posted a photo of another Canaanite gate from Tel Dan that Abraham passed through. This one is akin to it, but a little older. It could easily be that Abraham passed through this one as well. It is restored, but has original brick work in it too.
Also, you can see the inset in the wall where the silver calf of the god, Baal sat for the people to worship as they passed to the gate! So sad!
The highlight of the day was to go to Beersheba, a place that held alot of importance to Israel thoughout the years of time! It is the place that Abraham went to after he was going to offer Isaac as a sacrifice, but the angel of the Lord stopped him. From Mt. Moriah, he went to Beersheba, built an altar, and dug a well. It was a fairly long residence of Abraham.
There is a four-horned altar there that was very special to me! Then you move on and you come to the welll that it is well believed and understood to be the one that Abraham dug! Wow!
The next stop was Tel Arad. It is still somewhat unclear who was the responsible King/party to build it. Some have attributed it to David, others to Solomon, others to Rehaboam, Hezekiah, etc. etc. My belief is that all attributed to this massive structural fortress on the hill! An amazing structure! One of the great things to me was that the original altar was still here as well as one of the original stones on the Holy of Holies of the Temple! Another large, deep, water well was here and dating back to Abrahamic time!
Our last stop was to a very raw archeological dig called Tel Lachish. Lachish was a city inhabited by the enemies of God's people as well as Israel itself throughout the years of time. I need to study more about it before I tell you alot more. But it is certainly a great find and hold tremendous promise. It is amazing how much is there already with out restoration yet to date.
Well, I likely will not post again until Saturday evening or Sunday, as tomorrow will be a very light day; likely only a stop or two, and then Cheryl and I spending some quality time together!
We are planning to be at our friend, Wajih, the head waiter at the hotel restaurant for Shabbat meal tomorrow evening. Wow! What an honor! Please be in prayer for us as we minister of the grace of God! Agape to all! In Him, Lael