At the southwest corner of Temple Mount, one can see remains of an arched entryway at the top of a long flight of stairs which once served as the entrance for Jewish pilgrims making their journey to the Temple in Jerusalem for the annual feasts.
Because Jesus and His family were Jewish, and because we know they went up to Jerusalem (as all able-bodied Jewish families did) for the annual feasts, Jesus would have walked here. However, that archway and staircase were destroyed by the Romans in 70 AD.
We also know, though, that Jewish law required those ascending to the Temple for worship to be ceremonially clean. There are many mikvaot (ritual baths that look like baptismals) south of Temple Mount, which are thought to have been used by the wealthy, while multitudes of ordinary Jews washed in the Pool of Siloam, lying further south of Temple Mount in the City of David. Jesus and His family were “commoners,” and would almost certainly have cleansed themselves there.
Well, in 2004, a sewage pipe burst beneath the Arab neighborhood of Silwan and, as is customary when construction crews begin to do excavation work near the Old City, archaeologists accompanied them. What do you supposed they found? Remnants of that large pool, and later, even more exciting discoveries! Long, wide stairs leading from that pool up through what they now know as the City of David, all the way to that giant archway to Temple Mount!
Friends, I can’t tell you how exciting this is! I have seen the City of David and the Pool of Siloam. I even got a “sneak peak” of this walkway on a private tour a few years ago. But the Pilgrimage Road (as it is called) just opened to the public yesterday…and we will see it on our tour in November! We will literally walk on the stone pathway Jesus walked as He and His family ascended to the Temple! I can’t wait!
Would you like to see the Grand Opening? It is below. It is long, but watch the first 30 minutes. Or, if you can’t do that, watch the promo video they provided from about 10:00 to 17:00 within the video below. The Pilgrimage Road is called the “most significant 600 meters in Israel,” and you’ll find out why!
Oh, I want to take all of you along! Our tour filled up, but…good news! We were allotted a few more spaces and, though I can’t take all of you, we do have room for 4 more! Come join us! Visit the EXPERIENCE ISRAEL TOUR page for details!