The Diary of Evelyn Forrestâ€™s Trip to Palestine
Tuesday April 22, 1930
Up a little before five and breakfast was announced at 5:30. At 6 a. m., we started for the Sea of Galilee. Miss Butterfield, Dad, and I are in an open touring car. I wore my winter coat, and we had two lap robes, which felt very comfortable as we drive over the mountain. We will pass through Nazareth the boyhood home of our Saviour and many places of interest before we reach the beautiful Sea of Galilee where Jesus preformed so many miracles.
As we leave Jerusalem, 5.5 kilometers the hill to the right is Tel-el-ful the site of Gibeah of Saul, the birthplace and royal residence of King Saul. (Samuel 10:26) Behind the hill is Anathoth and still called Anata, the birthplace of Aliathar the high priest and Jeremiah the prophet. On the left we see Nebi Samuil [Ramah] the burial place of Samuel. General Allenby had his headquarters there when the keys of the city of Jerusalem were delivered to him.
16kil. From Jerusalem the road passes through Bireh, the ancient Beeroth, here are the ruins of the â€œChurch of the Holy Family.â€ Tradition claims this as the place where Mary and Joseph discovered the young child Jesus was missing and turned back to Jerusalem to find Him. They had gone a â€œdays journey.â€ We reached there in 30 minutes after leaving Jerusalem.
16.5kil. Bethel on the right. Soon we are passing between Mr. Gerizim (2,849 feet) and Mt. Ebal (3,077 feet).
64kil. From Jerusalem we came to Jacobâ€™s Well where Jesus sat down to rest and talked with the woman of Samaria (Gen. 33:18-20, John 4:5-43). The well is 80 ft. deep and 9 ft. in diameter. Josephâ€™s Tomb marked by a white dome is not far from the well and the village of Sychar where the woman lived is just beyond to the right. How vivid all this makes the Bible story of the mighty revival through one womanâ€™s testimony.
On the top of Mt. Gerizim an old building marks the spot where the Samaritans still perform their ancient Passover sacrifice. Nablius (1,000 feet below Jerusalem), between Mr. Gerizim and Mt Ebal, is the only home of the 170 remnants of this ancient Samaritan sect. It is on the site of old Shecham, which was one of the cities of refuge. As we passed between these two mountains, we almost felt we were living back in Joshuaâ€™s day, when they listened to the reading of the Blessings and Curses and all the people said, â€œAmen! Amen!â€
The mountains from a natural amphitheatre and the acoustics are so good you can almost hear a whisper from one side to the other.
77kil. The hill straight ahead is the site of the ancient city of Samaria, capital of the Northern Kingdom of Israel.