February 18, 2015
It rained. Again. We went south out of a wet and cold Jerusalem to the Negev, where we expected to find “sunny and 75.”
Tel Sheva. Here is the ancient remains of Beersheva. You are looking into the city gates with a 200 foot deep well just on the outside. No doubt our forefather Abraham dug this well. It’s a wondrous thing.
The city of Beer Sheva was nice sized with lots of houses and well built walls mostly of river rock. The archaeologically significant find of this place was a nice, well-preserved altar with 4 horns. Israelites must have used this altar as a pagan high place in the days of the Kings.
Again we noted the strategic location of this city geographically. It sits at the intersection of 2 wadis, which means water, the most essential ingredient needed in the desert. Also it sits at the place where east, west, north and south trade routes cross. Abraham was a smart man. He was a “force to be reckoned with”(quote). He had a nice little army of 318 men and many riches. Yet he was ever so humble, generous, caring and hospitable. He was so much like God that he was honored with being the “Father of many nations.”
Next was a Byzantine church preserved in a Nabatean city in the Negev. It’s called Tel Mamshit. This is where we really started seeing some desert.
Isn’t the desert just a pretty place? Flowers were blooming beautifully. It is the rainy season here and flowers are galore.
And more desert…
And amazing flowers…
Countless switchbacks with sheer dropoff edges right by the road. We enjoyed every minute of course.
We visited the small and large Maktesh (crater). Its the next smaller than Mitzpe Ramon. It almost took your breath away. You can see for miles and miles across the Rift valley.
Behold, a king will reign in righteousness, and princes will rule in justice. Each will be like a hiding place from the wind, a shelter from the storm, like streams of water in a dry place, like the shade of a great rock in a weary land. Isaiah 32:1,2
It was rainy, windy, wet and cold here in this desert, so a cleft in the rock here really put some perspective to these verses.
A beautiful rainbow after the storm was just amazing to see after everything got just a small sprinkling.
And the most beautiful sunset to top off a perfect day!