After leaving the Dome of the Rock, Jim led us through narrow streets and around corners until we came to some steps leading to this site.
There were thousands of people here worshiping!
Jim told us later that only about 3% of the religious Jewish people come. Most of the Jewish people are not practicing or are atheists. At Passover, they go to the lakes to windsurf or to other places to have a fun week.
Just think, he said, of the time Jesus came to Jerusalem with his family when he was 12. The entire wall around the temple (not just this section that is preserved) would have been packed just like this. How easy for a 12 year old to get "lost".
As we snaked down the stairs, holding tightly to the person in front of us, I looked behind to see more people on these buildings, saying prayers. It was quite loud and thrilling! The crowds reminded me of crowded subways in Japan!
I love taking pictures of people! People watching is a fun thing for me! I snapped pictures with one hand and held tightly to the person in front of me with the other.
This is as close as we could get to the wall, but we were told we would try another time when it wasn't so filled with people. But the experience of being there among the throngs of people was great!!
It took awhile to get through the crowd to the exit and luckily we all made it without getting lost. Jim instructed us to ask for directions to the Dung Gate if we ever got separated and he would send Geoff to find us.
As we exited and made our way to the bathrooms (Jim was ever mindful of our needs!), we saw this guy and his friends celebrating in song.
And this one saying his prayers.
"Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!" John 1:29
"The concept of a Sacrificial Lamb was a familiar one to Jewish people. They knew of Abraham's confidence that God would provide a lamb to offer in place of Isaac (Gen. 22:7-8). Lambs were also sacrificed at Passover and as part of a daily ritual in the temple as a sin offering by individuals (Lev. 5:5-7). God also made it clear that none of the sacrifices were sufficient to take away sin (Isaiah 1:11). They were also aware of Isaiah's prophecy liking Messiah to "a lamb that is led to slaughter" (Isa. 53:7; cf. Acts 8:32; 1 Peter 1:19. Though Israel sought a Messiah who would be a prophet, king, and conqueror, God sent them a lamb." Jewishroots.net