It’s a place between important places. Few individuals, if any, journey there directly. Most would miss it, in fact, if they didn’t know to look. Yet Kiriath Jearim was profoundly significant.
Modern commuters along Israel’s Route 1 drive by the site every day, their minds on their routines. Even tour buses rarely point to the place, much less stop there.
The tourists who do pull over often do so only to snap pictures at the Elvis American Diner (also known as the “Elvis Inn”). A 16-foot-tall bronze likeness of Elvis Presley greets every visitor. Inside the diner, Elvis music is all they hear as they eat their Elvis Burgers. But Elvis isn’t what makes this hill noteworthy.
Around the corner from the offbeat diner, near the modern Israeli Arab village of Abu Gosh, sits the site so few see and even fewer visit—the biblical site of Kiriath Jearim.
You’d never know by looking, but the physical symbol of God’s presence in Israel rested for about a century on this overlooked hill.
Click to continue reading »