I was completely ambushed by God once again. As we made our way through the very busy and very small streets of Nazareth, which is now a fairly major (and majorly compacted) city, I noticed signs that were in Arabic and random signs that were in English. Hmm. Seems like an awkward tourist spot, I thought to myself.
We pulled in to a parking lot for a building that said the “Nazareth Village”. To be honest, I was kind of not excited. My initial assumption was that this would be some sort of cheesy, touristy, unimpressive stop.
I was wrong!
The first funny thing that happened was that I met Bob Fetterhoff on the way in. Bob was a longtime pastor at a church 15 minutes from my home in Ohio. Apparently he is currently on a tour from Rome to Jerusalem. We shook hands and laughed about how far we had to travel just to say “hello” to one another. That was certainly unexpected.
When we started going through the “Nazareth Village”, I could tell that it was something special! The people who own and operate the site are definitely believers who want people to come to know and trust in the Savior from Nazareth! I am not sure how to explain this site in way that will do it justice, but I will say this: if you are going to Jerusalem, do yourself a favor and plan to stop in Nazareth at the “Nazareth Village”. It was awesome!
It was part Museum and part interactive first century village. Part of the village is original and most is reconstructed. You can get a glimpse into first century life and a far greater understanding of the importance of Olives to the people, how they collect and press them, and so much more. We watched a woman spin sheeps wool into yarn, a man work as a first century carpenter, and experienced what it would be like to go to a first century synagogue.