Friday, May 6, 2011

The Trip of a Lifetime! (Day 8)

Friday, May 6th

This morning was the highlight of the trip for me - the Garden of Gethsemane.  The Garden of Gethsemane is located at the bottom of the slope of the Mount of Olives, opposite the Temple Mount.

The Mount of Olives has always been an important feature in Jerusalem's landscape.  From the 3rd millennium BC until the present, this 2900-foot hill has served as one of the main burial grounds for the city.  The two-mile long ridge has three summits each of which has a tower built on it.

In the picture below you can see the Church of Mary Magdalene (a Russian Orthodox church), further up the Mount of Olives than the Garden.  It was built in honor of the czar's mother in 1888.  Twenty-eight nuns from all over the world live in the convent here today. 
We visited the Garden of Gethsemane in the early morning hours before there were more tourists around.  We actually went into a private and locked part of the Garden and were the only ones in that area.  We were able to sit and listen to John Lund talk about forgiveness and the atonement of Jesus Christ - that amazing sacrifice and gift that gives us the ability to repent and be forgiven of our sins so that we may be made clean and have the ability to live with our Father in Heaven and his son, our brother, Jesus Christ someday.

Some of the things that I loved that John Lund said:

1) Our Heavenly Father has the ability to deal with us as an only child.  He can deal with us one by one.

2) Heavenly Father did not abandon Jesus.  He did not forsake him. "The father hath not left me alone." (John 8)

3) "Father from me remove this cup." (speaking of a tear cup)

4) The second greatest sin is the sin of not forgiving (second only to denying the Holy Ghost).  When we do this we deny the atonement of Jesus Christ.  Be gracious with each other.  When someone gives you a compliment, say "thank you".  Don't self deprecate.

5) Certain things are so serious we may never invest trust in that person again, but we can still forgive them.  We MUST forgive them. "I, the Lord, will forgive whom I will forgive, but of you it is required to forgive all men." (Doctrine and Covenants 64:10)

6) How many of your todays and tomorrows will you give away to your impossible to change past (to your yesterdays).  Forgive everyone, including yourself, then turn them over to God.

7) It's not about if you remember your wrongs, because you will, it's how you remember.  When you remember, remember the day you turned it over to the Lord.

8) Don't be a victim.  You must stop telling the story and seeking sympathy.  You want to be happy, and you can't do that when you constantly relive something by telling about it and being a victim.  Don't hang onto things just because you feel some sort of entitlement.  Let it go.  Don't find comfort in sympathy.

9) Questions the Lord will ask us when we leave this life:
  • Have you learned how to love?
  • Have you forgiven absolutely everyone so I (Jesus Christ) can do my part and forgive you?
After the Last Supper Jesus walked with the disciples to the Garden of Gethsemane, to begin the final steps to the destiny that awaited Him.  The Gospel of John 8:1 says that they went "over the brook Cedron, where there was a garden", referring to the Kidron Valley.  The name Gethsemane means oil press, and there seems no reason to doubt the tradition that this is the garden named in Matthew's Gospel.  According to Elder James E. Talmage, "the name [Gethsemane] probably has reference to a mill maintained at the place for the extraction of oil from the olives there cultivated.  John refers to the spot as a garden, from which designation we may regard it as an enclosed space of private ownership.  That it was a place frequented by Jesus when He sought retirement for prayer, or opportunity for confidential converse with the disciples, is indicated by the same writer (John 18:1,2)".

Till today the lower slopes of the Mount of Olives are covered with ancient olive trees, some of which are reckoned to be old enough to have heard Jesus' final words of prayer, "nevertheless, not my will, buy thy will, be done" (Luke 22:42).  Three times Jesus prayed for "this cup (to) pass from me", but it was not to be.  After His prayer in the Garden, Temple guards appeared, led by Judas Iscariot who approached to kiss Him.  Luke's Gospel continues that Jesus said "Judas, betrayest thou the Son of man with a kiss?".  Then the Roman soldiers seized Jesus while the disciples fled.

Mark's parents in the Garden...

Mark and I...

These poppies were everywhere in the Garden of Gethsemane and all over the Mount of Olives.  Again, these are the "lilies of the field" referred to in the scriptures.

I love the following account given by Elder Orson F. Whitney:

As a young missionary, Elder Orson F. Whitney (1855–1931), who later served in the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, had a dream so powerful that it changed his life forever. He later wrote:

“One night I dreamed … that I was in the Garden of Gethsemane, a witness of the Savior’s agony. … I stood behind a tree in the foreground. …Jesus, with Peter, James, and John, came through a little wicket gate at my right. Leaving the three Apostles there, after telling them to kneel and pray, He passed over to the other side, where He also knelt and prayed … : ‘Oh my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless not as I will but as Thou wilt.’

“As He prayed the tears streamed down His face, which was [turned] toward me. I was so moved at the sight that I wept also, out of pure sympathy with His great sorrow. My whole heart went out to Him. I loved Him with all my soul and longed to be with Him as I longed for nothing else.

“Presently He arose and walked to where those Apostles were kneeling—fast asleep! He shook them gently, awoke them, and in a tone of tender reproach, untinctured by the least show of anger or scolding, asked them if they could not watch with Him one hour. …

“Returning to His place, He prayed again and then went back and found them again sleeping. Again He awoke them, admonished them, and returned and prayed as before. Three times this happened, until I was perfectly familiar with His appearance—face, form, and movements. He was of noble stature and of majestic mien … the very God that He was and is, yet as meek and lowly as a little child.

“All at once the circumstance seemed to change. … Instead of before, it was after the Crucifixion, and the Savior, with those three Apostles, now stood together in a group at my left. They were about to depart and ascend into heaven. I could endure it no longer. I ran from behind the tree, fell at His feet, clasped Him around the knees, and begged Him to take me with Him.

“I shall never forget the kind and gentle manner in which He stooped and raised me up and embraced me. It was so vivid, so real that I felt the very warmth of His bosom against which I rested. Then He said: ‘No, my son; these have finished their work, and they may go with me; but you must stay and finish yours.’ Still I clung to Him. Gazing up into His face—for He was taller than I—I besought Him most earnestly: ‘Well, promise me that I will come to You at the last.’ He smiled sweetly and tenderly and replied: ‘That will depend entirely upon yourself.’ I awoke with a sob in my throat, and it was morning.”

 We walked a little ways up the Mount of Olives to the Orson Hyde Memorial Garden.  This picture is looking down below us at more of the olive trees...

From the Orson Hyde Memorial Garden on the Mount of Olives we could look west to the Temple Mount of Jerusalem.  You can see the city wall with the Golden Gate visible.  A Moslem tradition says that a destroying conqueror will one day enter the city through this gate, thus the gate is blocked and is guarded by a cemetery.  The Jews believe that the Messiah will enter Jerusalem from here.  For Christians it marks the place where Jesus Christ indeed entered the Temple Mount on a humble donkey in His triumphal entry.  Separating the Temple Mount and the adjacent City of David from the Mount of Olives is the Kidron Valley. 

The Orson Hyde memorial garden was dedicated to Orson Hyde in memory of his mission to Jerusalem in 1841, where he dedicated the Holy Land for the return of the Jews.  The following is an excerpt from his prayer to Heavenly Father on Sunday, October 24, 1841 while he was on the Mount of Olives in this spot:

"O Thou, Who didst covenant with Abraham, Thy friend, and who didst renew that covenant with Isaac, and confirm the same with Jacob with an oath, that Thou wouldst not only give them this land for an everlasting inheritance, but that Thou wouldst also remember their seed forever.  Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob have long since closed their eyes in death, and made the grave their mansion.  Their children are scattered and dispersed abroad among the nations of the Gentiles like sheep that have no shepherd, and are still looking forward for the fulfillment of those promises which Thou didst make concerning them; and even this land, which once poured forth nature's richest bounty, and flowed, as it were, with milk and honey, has, to a certain extent been smitten with barrenness and sterility since it drank from murderous hands the blood of Him who never sinned."

"Grant, therefore, O Lord, in the name of They well-beloved Son, Jesus Christ, to remove the barrenness and sterility of this land, and let springs of living water break forth to water its thirsty soil  Let the vine and olive produce in their strength, and the fig-tree bloom and flourish.  Let the land become abundantly fruitful when possessed by its rightful heirs; let it again flow with plenty to feed the returning prodigals who come home with a spirit of grace and supplication; upon it let the clouds distill virtue and richness, and let the fields smile with plenty.  Let the flocks and the herds greatly increase and multiply upon the mountains and the hills; and let They great kindness conquer and subdue the unbelief of Thy people.  Do Thou take from them their stony heart, and give them a heart of flesh; and may the Sun of Thy favor dispel the cold mists of darkness which have beclouded their atmosphere.  Incline them to gather in upon this land according to They word.  Let them come like doves to their windows.  Let the large ships of the nations bring them from the distant isles; and let kings become their nursing fathers, and queens with motherly fondness wipe the tear of sorrow from their eye."

Speaking of his mission as he was leaving to go back to America, Orson Hyde stated, "The number of inhabitants within the walls is about 20,000.  About 7,000 of this number are Jews, the balance being mostly Turks and Armenians.  Many of the Jews are old go to this place to die, and many are coming from Europe into this eastern world.  The great wheel is unquestionably in motion, and the word of the Almighty has declared that it shall roll."

There began a slow migration of the Jewish people to their homeland.  The movement to return became known as the Zionist Movement, and was influenced by leaders such as Theodore Herzl and Asher Ginsburg.

On November 2, 1917 the Balfour Declaration was issued.  This document expressed the British government's commitment to the establishment of "a national home for the Jewish people" in Palestine.

More and more Jews are returning to their homeland.

One of the things I find most interesting about the prayer given by Orson Hyde is the state of the land before his dedication of it for the return of the Jews.  Until Christ died the land "flowed, as it were, with milk and honey".  After Christ died, and up until Orson Hyde's dedication, the earth itself went into mourning for the loss of our Savior, Jesus Christ, to murderous hands.  In his dedication, Orson Hyde asked Heavenly Father to again bless the land - "remove the barrenness sterility" of the land.

I must say that I had always pictured Israel as a barren desert.  I could not have been more wrong.  Israel is a lush paradise brimming with forests and flowers and beauty once again.

 The area of the Garden of Gethsemane with the oldest trees is fenced off to protect it.  Visitors can easily walk around the perimeter to view it.  These trees are 2,000 years old!  To think that this area is where our Savior knelt and atoned for us.  It is very humbling to reflect on how much our brother must love us!

This rose located in the garden above was literally the size of a man's hand.  There were many of them!

Right next to the above Garden is the Church of All Nations - also called The Church of the Agony.  The original 4th century sanctuary was enlarged some 800 years later by the Crusaders and renamed St. Saviors.  The present Church of the Agony, completed in 1924, is one of Jerusalem's most beautiful.  The Four Evangelists stand atop columns by its arched portico.  Over their heads a magnificent mosaic depicts Jesus offering his suffering to God above, who sits holding Greek letters.  This captures the words of Revelation 1:8 "I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord".

Inside, dim light is reflected on dark blue cupolas dotted with stars representing the night sky.  The Stone of the Agony dominates the floor of the church, while its walls are adorned with scenes of that fateful night.

 After leaving the Garden and church, we walked across the street to the walls of the old city.  On the way we passed this building.  I LOVE all the magnificent architecture here!

Looking back at the Garden of Gethsemane...

Now we get to enter the east side of the Old City of Jerusalem.  We are entering through the Lion's Gate (also called St. Stephen's Gate).  This is the start of the Via Dolorosa.  The name St. Stephen's Gate was adopted in the Middle Ages by Christians who believed that the first Christian martyr, St. Stephen, was executed here.
The name Lion's Gate comes from a myth told of the Ottoman caliph, Suleiman the Magnificent.  One night in a dream the four lions that had guarded the throne of Kings David and Solomon came to savage him, as punishment for the heavy taxes he'd imposed upon the city.  Waking in a sweat, he cancelled the tax and ordered a 2 1/2 mile limestone wall to be built around Jerusalem instead.  Where the work began in 1538, Suleiman erected a gate adorned with four lions, in memory of his dream.

At the gate there were more military (they were everywhere we went in Israel).  They were very friendly and liked posing in pictures with us.
 The Old City of Jerusalem has a total of 11 gates, but only seven are open (Jaffa, Zion, Dung, Lion's [St. Stephen's], Herod's, Damascus, and New).  Besides the Lion's Gate mentioned above, here is an explanation of the others:

The Zion Gate is the entrance to the Jewish quarter (also called David's Gate after the king whose tomb is on Mount Zion opposite).

The Dung Gate takes its name from the garbage that Christians used to throw on the ruins of the Temple in Byzantine times.  It leads to the Western Wall.

Herod's Gate is the entrance to the Moslem quarter through the northern wall and is where Crusader siege towers breached the walls of the city in 1099.

The Damascus Gate is the most ornate example of Ottoman design.  It was built where the Roman Emperor Hadrian opened a northern entrance nearly 2,000 years ago.

The Golden Gate (also called Susa Gate) was mentioned previously when we were in The Garden of Gethsemane and at the Orson Hyde memorial.

The Jaffa Gate is the main entrance to the Old City and is on the west side.  It marked the end of the highway leading from the Jaffa coast and now leads into the Muslim and Armenian quarters.

The New Gate was constructed in 1889 near the northwestern corner of the city and leads into the Christian quarter.

Once inside the city we walked to the site of the biblical Pools of Bethesda.  It was here that Jesus commanded the lame man to take up his bed and walk.

"Now there is at Jerusalem by the sheep market a pool, which is called in the Hebrew tongue Bethesda, having five porches.  In these lay a great multitude of impotent folk, of blind, halt, withered, waiting for the moving of the water.  For an angel went down at a certain season into the pool, and troubled the water: whosoever then first after the troubling of the water stepped in was made whole of whatsoever disease he had.  And a certain man was there, which had an infirmity thirty and eight years.  When Jesus saw him lie, and knew that he had been now a long time in that case, he saith unto him, Wilt thou be made whole?  The impotent man answered him, Sir, I have no man, when the water is troubled, to put me into the pool: but while I am coming, another steppeth down before me.  Jesus saith unto him, Rise, take up thy bed, and walk.  And immediately the man was made whole, and took up his bed, and walked." (John 5:2-9)

As you can see in the two pictures below there is no water in the Pools now.  The remains of the Pools of Bethesda were discovered while excavating the grounds of St. Anne's Church.  The largest is 350 feet long, 200 feet wide, and 40 feet deep.

Next to the Pools of Bethesda is the Church of St. Anne.  This site is regarded as the birthplace of the Virgin Mary, the home of her parents Anne and Joachim.  Originally, in the 4th century, a basilica to St. Mary was erected here.  Toward the end of the 11th century the Crusaders built a small chapel over the 5th century ruins, then it was extensively rebuilt in 1140 and is recognized as the jewel of medieval architecture and the greatest among all churches the Crusaders built in the city.  It shows clearly how the Crusaders built their churches like fortresses.  It lies over the foundations of one of the earlier churches, part of which can still be seen in the crypt.

Again, the acoustics in all of the churches we visited were amazing.  We took an opportunity at each one to sing - and this was no exception.  In most cases the song of choice was "As I Have Loved You".

We were greeted by this beautiful statue when we entered the church...

We LOVED walking through the city.  To be somewhere where so much history has been preserved, to see so much amazing architecture was so fun.  What a beautiful city!

The next stop on our walking tour was the Antonia Fortress (located at the Convent of the Sisters of Zion).  Originally it was built by Herod the Great as a palace and was named after his Roman friend and mentor, Marc Anthony.  By the time Pontius Pilate became prefect of Judea in 26 AD, its four huge, imposing towers had become a symbol of the Roman domination of Jerusalem, and the main barracks of its forces in the city.

This is the location where Pilate tried the Savior.

You can see the original stone road and the ruts in the pavement where the chariots rode.

Here at the Antonia Fortress is where the Roman soldiers gambled for Jesus' clothes.  They played a dice game on this board cut into the pavement...

There was also an ancient manger here.  Now that doesn't look comfortable at all!

From here we walked back through the city to our bus - enjoying the sights as we went...

Cars actually do drive through the streets of the old city - even up and down the steps cut into the pavement.  You can see the ramps cut into the steps below.  There's not a lot of room.  Sometimes we would hear a car honk behind us and we would have to plaster ourselves up against the walls on either side to allow the car through.

From here we left the Old City of Jerusalem and drove 22 miles south to the archeological dig of Beit Lehi (this is also the area where Samson roamed and fought his foes, the Philistines).  

The history of Beit Lehi is very interesting - especially to any who are familiar with the Book of Mormon:

"In 1961 Israeli soldiers unearthed a cave that had inscriptions and drawings including the oldest known Hebrew writing of the word “Jerusalem” dated to approximately 600 B.C. by Dr. Frank Cross Moore, Jr. of Harvard University.

     'I am Jehovah thy Lord. I will accept the cities of Judah and I will redeem Jerusalem'

     'Absolve us oh merciful God. Absolve us oh Jehovah'

The drawings depicted men who appeared to be fleeing and two ships.

While investigating the cave, Dr. Joseph Ginat of The University of Haifa met a Bedouin who told him about the remains of an ancient oak tree about 1/4 of a mile away where, according to Bedouin legends and tradition, a prophet named Lehi blessed and judged the people of both Ishmael and Judah. The Bedouin told Dr. Ginat that Lehi had lived many years before Muhammad and that Arab people had built a wall of large rocks around the remains of the tree to protect it as a sacred spot, long known by Arab inhabitants as 'Beit Lehi', meaning 'Home of Lehi.'

Dr. Ginat shared this information with W. Cleon Skousen whom he had met while studying anthropology at University of Utah and teaching at Brigham Young University from 1970 through 1975.

In 1983 Dr. Skousen and Dr. Glenn Kimber worked with Dr. Ginat and Dr. Yoram Tsafrir of Hebrew University to secure permission and funding to excavate the site. The first excavations began in December 1983. By noon of the first day, archaeologists found an ancient village and well-preserved mosaic floor of a Byzantine era chapel. Since that time, “hewn subterranean installations, including columbaria, olive presses, water cisterns, quarries, a stable, and hideaways,” have been discovered along with pottery and other items suggesting that the area had been populated from 600 B.C. until the Mameluke period of 1500 A.D. The discovery has been featured in the book Ancient Churches Revealed, published in 1993 by the Israel Exploration Society.

After 1986 the site was covered to protect it until additional funds could be raised and conditions were right to continue future excavations.

In 1994 Dr. Kimber and about 40 others, including a number of students, joined Dr. Ginat and Dr. Tsafrir to re-open the site. Since 1994, many groups have visited the site and participated in the excavation.

Dr. Tsafrir, has since retired and according to Israeli law, passed responsibility for archaeological exploration to Dr. Oren Gutfeld of Hebrew University who continues to manage the excavation."

I like Dr. S. Michael Wilcox's description of Beit Lehi:

"And I could not help but wonder as we turned south from Jerusalem what connections this site had with Lehi of Book of Mormon fame. Could his name have come from this local? Was I going to walk the hills Nephi walked? This mystery would find no answers, but the spell of the place was irresistible and pulled us magnetically down the road. It was even more intriguing since Fun For Less Tours is the only company allowed on the site."

Inscriptions found on the walls of caves lead archaeologists to believe that Jewish refugees found shelter here during Nebuchadnezzar's campaign against Judah in 6th century BC.

In the photo below, our group is descending to two different underground rooms.  The first, which was straight ahead, contained an oil press.  The second, the door of which was to the left of the one leading to the oil press, was a Jewish Ritual Bath.
The first room contained an oil press facility from the Second Temple Period (530 BC to 70 AD).  This oil press was comprised of the following elements: one large basin in which olives were stored (pictured below in the upper right); a large stone crushing basin and crushing stone for the initial crushing of the olives (seen in the 3rd picture below); and three pressing installations for squeezing the oil (one is shown in the upper left of the picture below).  On the ground of the picture below, and also in the second, you can see the stones that were hung on the oil presses to squeeze out all of the oil from the olives that would have been placed in baskets on the press.
Baskets holding the olives were suspended from a wooden beam that fitted into a niche in the wall above the pressing installations, and force was exerted on them with the help of stone weights (they are the ones with holes in them seen below).

This is the room containing the Jewish Ritual Bath.  Jewish law attributes great significance to matters of purity; this was especially the case during the Second Temple period.  This matter touches on all aspects of life, not least food and drink.  Oil has to be prepared in pure conditions to ensure that it will be kosher, and in order to not sully these conditions the workers preparing it must themselves be pure.  In antiquity workers immersed themselves in a ritual bath prior to beginning their labor.  It was very common to have a ritual bath adjacent to an oil press.

This Ritual Bath is one of the largest known and was preserved almost unscathed.  It was in use from approximately 100 BC to 200 AD, at which time Jewish refugees from the time of the Third Jewish Revolt dug a hiding tunnel into one of the bath walls.

Our tour guide, one of the archaeologists of the site, is pictured below in the purple shirt.  She had a small Jewish accent and was so cute!  She was so enthusiastic about each find in Beit Lehi.  She even grew teary-eyed as she discussed what happened in the different excavated rooms.  She kept apologizing for being so emotional, but you could tell this was very important to her and it was so fun hearing her tell the stories of the events that happened here.

The two pictures below are of the Subterranean Chapel here.  It is entirely rock- hewn and dates from 500-800 AD.  The center contained the remains of an altar table.

Incised graffiti is seen on the walls, comprising several crosses, a tree or a fishbone, and possibly the greek letter Alpha in a frame.

The next part of this tour was one of my favorites.  The picture below is of our descent into The Large Columbarium.

A columbarium, or dovecote, is an installation known from approximately 323 BC to 1453 AD.  Doves were used for food and fertilizer, as well as for sacrifice during the Second Temple period (200 BC to 70 AD) by Jews who would purchase them for pilgrimage to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem (Leviticus 1:14; Luke 2:21-24).  Birds were the smallest and least expensive sacrificial offerings. Women who gave birth, people who had sworn oaths, and those who could not afford more expensive animals, sacrificed birds.  The considerable demand for birds for sacrifice resulted in bird farming in Judah and large-scale marketing in Jerusalem.

The triangular niches below housed the doves.
 There were thousands of niches in this columbarium...

The stone arch seen in the upper part of the picture below was underneath the original entrance of the columbarium.  It was installed to support the stone slabs that sealed the entrance.  Remains of well-worn steps are underneath the arch.

Four deep circular hewn shafts were installed to let in light and air, as well as to allow the doves to come and go as they pleased.  The shafts also featured small niches that enabled workers to climb up and down.  The picture below shows one of these original shafts in the ceiling.

These pigeons had made the columbarium their home...

I don't have a picture of it, but we were also able to descend into an actual stable from New Testament times.  Dr. Wilcox's words were identical to my thoughts as I viewed this amazing place:

"I have been to Bethlehem and never fail to feel the power of that city, but The Church of the Nativity is large and ornate and one finds it difficult to visualize the birth of Christ. Yet here at Beit Lehi is a stable unchanged from New Testament times. The entrance is narrow and we had to maneuver around some of the fallen stones but our efforts were well rewarded. It is a small room, divided in half down its length by a stone wall with six arched mangers cut out of the rock. Each manger had a lip about six inches high to hold the grain or straw for the feeding animals. In the corner was a hollowed out basin for water and in the floor pits had been dug with stone lids in which grain and other commodities could be stored. We directed our flashlights from corner to corner. We could still see the holes in the wall for the wooden bars which would hold the animals on one side of the stable while people could work on the other side. For the first time in my life I could envision the holy family on that first Christmas night. Here was a setting for a babe wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger. I could see the shepherds bending down through the entrance to view the Son of God coming into the world in such humble surroundings. In the many years of visiting the Holy Land, I had never seen a stable as it would have looked two thousand years ago. It was the highlight of my whole trip that year and one that never fails to move me with each repeated visit."

The next two pictures are of The Byzantine Church Complex.  You can see the excavation that is currently happening here.  The site is composed of a basilica with an ornate colorful mosaic floor, a baptistery containing a basin surrounded by a marble screen, an oil press, a wine press, and a burial cave.  According to excavators, it is estimated to have been in use from about 600-800 AD.

As we traveled away from Beit Lehi our buses pulled to the side of the road so we could get out and explore this historic valley - The Valley of Elah.  This is the location of the battle of David and Goliath.

Located on the east end of the valley (the mountain to the right in the picture below) is the site of Adullam.  This place proved to be the perfect place for David to hide in his initial flight from Saul.  As it today rests on the border between pre-'67 Israel and the West Bank, so in David's day, this site was apparently in "no-man's land" where he could stay safely out of the path of Saul or the Philistines.

The Brook Elah runs through the Valley of Elah.  There was no water flowing when we were there, but water flows at other times of the year.  It is famous for the five stones it contributed to the young slinger, David.  Some believe that David chose five stones instead of the one needed in case he needed to face Goliath's four brothers.

I picked up some stones from the brook to bring back as souvenirs...

From here we returned back to The Olive Tree hotel for the night.

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