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Shana Bet Tanach Tiyul/Siyum

by Aviyah Rosenwasser

Tel Socho
Tanach with Socho Pasuk
In Parshat Lech Lecha, HaKadosh Baruch Hu commands Avraham Avinu, "קום התהלך בארץ לארכה ולרחבה כי לך אתננה," "Rise and walk the land in it's length and width, for I shall give it to you!" Hashem knew that through walking the land and getting to know it, a person comes to identify with it and to love it.

Torah is eternal, and thus it applies to each and every one of us always. How do we fulfill this command of "קום התהלך בארץ" in our lives? Simple, that is if you are here in Eretz Yisrael! Baruch Hashem, here we are zoche to just walk outside and live the pesukim of all of Tanach! And it is through walking outside, and going on tiyulim that we get to know our Land, Eretz Yisrael - a most precious gift from HaKadosh Baruch Hu - and through this, we can really come to love it!

A few weeks ago, instead of having an ordinary final in Rabbi Haber's David HaMelech Class for Shana Bet, Shana Bet had the zechut of Rabbi Haber taking us on an extraordinary tiyul to many places that we learned about in Sefer Shmuel Alephl!  First, we traveled to "Tel El Ful," otherwise known as the ancient city of גבעה which at the time was the center of Shaul HaMelech's kingdom! We saw a breathtaking view of all of Yerushalayim from the partially built palace of Jordan's late King Hussein (he was in the middle of building it when we captured it in the Six Day War)! Devorah shared some beautiful words of Torah as we soaked in the stunning view surrounding us...

We then drove to Har Gilo, to a lookout point overlooking Bet Lechem. There, Shaina shared some Torah about the beginning of David HaMelech's life (right there in Bet Lechem) and I got to present about Rut (who also lived in Bet Lechem) and how she plays into David HaMelech's story!

Our next stop was at Emek Ha'Eila, where we ran across the highway (haha!) in order to see where David and Goliat's battle took place! We saw where the Pelishtim camped and where the army of Bnei Yisrael camped as well according to different opinions. It was incredible to see the words of Tanach really come alive, being able to really picture exactly what the stories took place totally enhances the entire Torah learning experience! There Allison shared with us her fascinating observation on the Chanit and the Kinor throughout Sefer Shmuel!

We then continued to our next stop...Tel Adulam! Where we saw the most STUNNING view of Nachal HaElah. It is believed that this was where the Biblical city of Adulam was, and we learned about how David hid in Maarat Adulam when he came back from Gat.  Once again, it was so fascinating to be able to take the Torah that we learned from the classroom and see it in real life!

After that, we drove down to Park Adulam, where we had an AWESOME Barbecue! Hotdogs, hamburgers, israeli salad - it was the real deal! We had a blast playing in the park, frolicking in the grass, and of course...eating! So much laughter and fun, ahhhh I wish I could go back in time! And how could we forget about when Rabbi Haber made us some coffee afterwards in a pickle can??! Chana and Jodi also got to share with us their divrei Torah at this time.

Our final stop was at "Chirbit Kayafa" where we got to see an ancient city from the time of David HaMelech that perhaps could have been the city of Shaarayim (mentioned in a few places in Tanach including at the battle against Goliat), although it is still under excavation so I guess we shall see with time! We davened mincha there, followed by watching the sun set behind the beautiful mountains.

In short, it was an absolutely incredible day filled with Torah and getting to know Eretz Yisrael...fulfilling Hashem's command way back in Parshat Lech Lecha - "קום התהלך בארץ." I feel so lucky to have the zechut to live in the land that Hashem promised us, and to learn Tanach where it actually took place!

Click here for more photos.

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