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Life in the Holy Land


Todd Bolen is Associate Professor of Biblical Studies, The Master’s College, Israel Bible Extension (IBEX), in the Judean Hills of Israel. He blogs at BiblePlaces Blog. Life in the Holy Land is an extensive collection of photographs, drawings, and maps of the biblical lands from the 19th and 20th centuries. I’ll let Todd tell you about it:

I am a teacher in Israel. An hour from now I am going to drive down to the airport and pick up a group of 50 seminary students from the U.S. Three weeks from now, when they depart after their intensive studies of the land of Israel, their understanding of the Bible will be revolutionized. I love to watch the “lights go on,” and in more than a decade of doing this, I have never seen one person who didn’t feel like the trip was worth every penny.

So I try to get as many people to Israel as I can. But some can’t come, for various reasons. And so I try to bring Israel to them. This I have been doing now for five years with the development of the Pictorial Library of Bible Lands. But recently I’ve decided that that is not enough. Modern photographs are great, but they are limited to showing life as it is today. So now I’m trying something new—to take people back to the land and peoples of Palestine in the 1800s. That’s not Bible times, to be sure, but it is traditional times, before the wave of modernization and the population explosion.

You can see, from photo graphs of a hundred years ago, what the land looked like before four-lane highways and ten-story apartment complexes were built. You can see the ways of the native people, doing things the way they had for hundreds or thousands of years, before combines and railways forever altered agriculture and transportation.

So how did the ancients plow and harvest? What was fishing on the Sea of Galilee like? How did leprosy affect its victims, and what does the imagery of Psalm 23 really mean? For this and dozens of other similar subjects, I created www.LifeintheHolyLand.com. The travelers’ descriptions are unlike any that you can find today, and a picture, of course, is worth a thousand words. Life in the Holy Land is not only a trip across the world, it is a trip back in time.

Life in the Holy Land will be an excellent resource for pastors, teachers, or anyone interested in the geography, history, and culture of the Holy Land.

I also recommend Todd’s BiblePlaces.com.



Posted 2006·01·03 by David Kjos
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