Christian Books for Families
by Arnold Ytreeide
"Because We Believe in a God who Loves Us All"
Jotham's Journey Places
Below are photos and illustrations of three of the places Jotham visited: En Gedi, Qumran and Jerusalem.
In Jotham's Journey, Jotham is taken to a "nasty place" called En Gedi. The real city of En Gedi existed for thousands of years on the shores of the Dead Sea because of its fresh spring water (bottom photo) and temperate climates which provided for good agriculture. As Jotham and Nathan discovered, En Gedi was also known for its caves. In fact, it was in this area that David cut off the hem of Saul's robe.
Part of what's left of En Gedi is shown in the second photo, and is the view of the Dead Sea that Jotham would see as he and Nathan flee.
The area has been continuously inhabited for thousands of years since it has one of only two fresh water springs along the shores of the Dead Sea.
Photos courtesy of BiblePlaces.com -- where you'll find many more images of the Holy Land for church and Sunday School use.
Qumran was a real compound at the north end of the Dead Sea where the religious sect known as the Essenes lived and worked. In our stories, Nathan is part of this community, and Jotham, Bartholomew and Tabitha all end up there at some point.
As in the stories, there really was a scriptorium at Qumran -- a room where the Essenes made copies of the scriptures. They hid these copies in urns in about 45 caves outside the compound. These are the scrolls Jotham finds while hiding there with Nathan.
In 1947 a native of the area discovered the caves, and the urns containing the writings. These are what's known today as the Dead Sea Scrolls.
Below are some artists' conceptions of what Qumran looked like, as well as photos of the cave and the site as it looks today.
The top photo shows the ruins of Qumran outlining many of the walls. Note the Dead Sea in the distance.
The second photo is of the Qumran caves as they appear today, and as visited by the author in 1980.
Thanks to the UCLA Virtual Qumran Project for computer artist's rendering. You can see many more at their website, VirtualQumran.com.
And Our thanks to eBibleTeacher.com for the photos. You'll find many such images and other church materials at their website.
This model shows old Jerusalem from the Kidron Valley looking at the temple. In the upper right corner of the temple mount are the four towers of the fortress of Antonia.
The photos below show the types of steep and narrow streets Jotham walked while searching for his family.
The bottom photo is of the Kidron Valley today.