As we left the ancient town of Samaria, the bus maneuvered through such narrow streets. Can you see the wall right next to the bus? Literally inches away!! Our bus driver was incredible!!
Taking pictures out of a moving bus is not the best, but I just had to capture the life of this land!
Beef - do you see the cattle head at the end of this row? I know, pretty gross!!
I wonder if this cow knows he has just a few moments left? This is what I call fresh beef!
Our bus stopped here on this narrow street and we got out to see the ruins of ancient Shechem. Shechem first appears in the Bible in Genesis 12. It is the place where God first repeated his promises to Abraham when he arrived in Canaan.
On one side of Shechem is Mt. Gerizim, where there are abundantly cultivated olive and fig trees.
Mt. Ebal is on the other side. The higher portions of Mt. Ebal are barren rock - the name means "bald stone" and only thistles and shrubs grow there.
When Joshua led the 12 tribes across the Jordan river and conquered that part of the Promised Land, 6 tribes went on the slopes of Mt. Ebal and 6 on Mt. Gerizim. The tribes on Mt. Ebal listened to God's curses for disobedience and on Mt. Gerizim, the tribes listened to God's blessings for obedience. In the hearing of all the people, Joshua and the Levites read the whole book of the Covenant and the people responded with their vows (Deut. 27:14)
Old walls of Shechem.
And Joshua wrote these words in the Book of the Law of God. And he took a large stone and set it up there under the terebinth that was by the sanctuary of the LORD." Joshua 24:26 They say that this is that very rock! Of course I had to touch it!
Later in history, the sons of Jacob avenged their sister's rape by massacring the city's inhabitants.