Sacred Places

By Ray Scotty Morris

Church of the Holy Sepulchre/ Tomb of Christ

Israel is the country of milk and honey, tiny in size but a giant in history and world opinion.  The capital is Jerusalem – the jewel in the crown.  Situated almost in the center of the country, the whole nation is less than 30,000 square kilometers.

Soldiers at the Wailing Wall

Jerusalem dates back to over 3,000 years and is sacred to three major religions. Christianity, Islam and Judaism.  Within a few hundred yards you can visit the holiest of the holiest of these three faiths: the Church of the Sepulchre, the Western Wall and the Dome of the Rock.

Dome of the Rock

There are very few places in Israel that you can go to that are not steeped in the Bible and history.  It is a country of diversity from its people – population of around 8 million, 6 million being Jewish.

Young Couple strolling in a Jerusalem Park

From the plush green of the Hula Valley to the sun-seared Negev desert to Mt. Hermon with snow-capped peaks during winter time; to the Dead Sea, the lowest place on earth, 400 meters below sea level and famous for its healing black mud; to Masada the historical Jewish fortress that held out for two years against the Romans and then the 1,000 zealots chose suicide instead of slavery.  In the Garden of Gethsemane, there are eight old olive trees that date back to being one to two thousand years old.  This is the site of Jesus’ arrest and betrayal.  The Church of the Holy Sepulchre is the holiest Christian site in the world where Christ was crucified and the (sepulchre) where he was buried.  The Dome of the Rock built over the sacred stone is where the prophet Mohammed ascended into heaven.  The Western Wall is the holiest shrine in Judaism.

Tourist at Ruins of Masada

Each step you take in Israel is a step back in time as is the greeting of Israel “Shalom”, the Hebrew word for Peace, for hello and goodbye.  If only it could be true.

Locals bathing in the Dead Sea.


Church of the Holy Sepulchre/Stone of Unction: Jesus’ annointment before burial.


Gethsemene Garden


Mount of Olives Cemetery

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