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Golgotha Upclose

I recently had the opportunity to return to Israel and explore the top of the large hill north of Damascus Gate, which I believe is the historic site of Golgotha.

The Urantia Book states that when Jesus was led by Roman soldiers out of the Jerusalem city walls, "they went by the most direct route to the Damascus gate, which led out of the city to the north, and following this road, they soon arrived at Golgotha, the official crucifixion site of Jerusalem." (2005.2 187:1.4).

Coincidentally, in in the mid-1800's General Charles Gordon of the British Army conjectured this site was Golgotha, The Place of the Skull, based on his perception that the unusual rock formation resembled a human skull.

Today this hill is the site of a Muslim Cemetary. It's surrounded by busy city streets and a bus depot rests at the foot of the south face of the hill. On my recent travel to Jerusalem, I found a gate open between two businesses and steps leading up to the cemetary. Armed with my unobtrusive Leica, I headed through the gate.

Arriving at the top, I noticed a caretaker repairing coffins, but no one else. I was a bit nervous as I had heard that non-Muslims were restricted from this site.

I include this site in A FEAST OF UNCERTAINTY, but have never seen images from the top of this hill, so I'm pretty certain you're seeing here some of the few images publicly available of this place which holds such tremendous meaning.

I took these pictures at 10 in the morning, the same time of day the soldiers had placed the Master on the cross some 2000 years ago.

This may give you a sense of what he saw as he spent his last hours here as a mortal.

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