Biblical pool discovered in Jerusalem

August 10, 2005

Sewer workers in Jerusalem have reportedly discovered the biblical Pool of Siloam -- an ancient gathering place for Jews and a holy Christian site.

The freshwater reservoir -- where, according to the Gospel of John, Jesus cured a man blind from birth -- was a major stop for Jews making religious pilgrimages to Jerusalem, the Los Angeles Times reported Tuesday.

"Scholars have said there wasn't a Pool of Siloam and that John was using a religious conceit" to illustrate a point, New Testament scholar James Charlesworth of the Princeton Theological Seminary told the Times. "Now we have found the Pool of Siloam ... exactly where John said it was."

Religious law required ancient Jews to make a pilgrimage to Jerusalem at least once a year, said archeologist Ronny Reich of the University of Haifa. "Jesus was just another pilgrim coming to Jerusalem," he said. "It would be natural to find him there."

The pool was built early during the 1st century BC and was destroyed by the future Roman Emperor Titus about AD 70, the Times said.

Copyright 2005 by United Press International

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