Sacred places

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Sacred Places

Between 70CE and 1948CE the Jews were in the time of the Diaspora or the "scattering" and as such they felt that they had no homeland. In 1947 CE the state of Israel was reformed. Israel is the most sacred place for all Jews, and many have since left the countries of their birth to come back to the "homeland". There are many places in Israel that are special to the Jews, we are going to look at 3 of them, Jerusalem, Masada and Yad Vashem.


"If I forget you O Jerusalem , may my right hand forget its skills."

(Psalm 137:5)

 Jerusalem is the religious capital of the Jewish faith, and it has been so since the 10th century BCE. It was then that the first temple was built by King Solomon in about 1900 BCE). This temple was destroyed by the Babylonians in 586 BCE when the Jews were taken into exile in Babylon.

"By the waters of Babylon there we sat and wept, when we remembered Zion On the willows there we hung up our lyres... How can we sing the Lord's song in a foreign land?"

(Psalm 137)

The second temple was built in the same place. Jews would come to the city for the important festivals of Pesach (Passover), Shauvot and Sukkot. The second temple was destroyed by the Romans in 70CE, and has never been rebuilt. All that remains of the second temple is the Western Wall. This has become a very special place of pilgrimage for Jews. All Jews who travel to Jerusalem will visit the Western Wall to pray, some will write prayers on small pieces of paper and leave them wedged between the great stones of the wall. Some Jews believe that the now the new state of Israel has come into existence the temple should be rebuilt, others say that the temple can only be rebuilt when the Messiah comes.


The Judean desert stretches all the way from the eastern side of Jerusalem all the


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