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A Peek at the Promised Land

April 16, 2017

Bible history tells us that Moses climbed Mt. Nebo, and from that vantage point was able to see the Promised Land. However, God didn’t let him actually go there — and after all that wandering! While his burial place has never been confirmed, scholars believe Moses was interred in the vicinity.

The church atop the mountain (the Moses Church) is a modern structure built on the excavated foundations of a fourth century basilica. Inside are some well-preserved sixth century mosaics — pretty amazing, since the church was abandoned in the sixteenth century and only rediscovered in the 1930s.

A bronze memorial commemorates Jesus’ death on the cross and Moses’ encounter with a serpent in the desert. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA




The Dead Sea is visible from the plaza out front, and a helpful sign points in the direction of the Jordan River, Hebron, Jericho and Jerusalem. It needs to be a sparkling clear day in order to catch sight of those communities, however; and on the two days I visited there was a murky haze, though the sky overhead was sunny. On the day I went with Waleed I was thrown out at closing time, which was about thirty minutes before sunset (though a kindly guard took me to a secret spot for one last shot). Waleed had his own vantage point outside the complex, with a flat parking area offering a good view of the sinking sun.  (To my photographer friends: Yes, I dehazed these shots!)


The wind is nearly always blowing up there, and the bent olive trees bear witness to that.  Even when crowds are crawling all over, there’s a certain sense of peace in this holy spot.

From → Jordan, Photography

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