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Tel Hadar

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Is this Where Jesus Fed the 4000?

Location - Dugit Beach, Galilee East Shore

Map Coordinates - 32.850481, 35.649678

Merged Gospels Story - 110

Description of the Site.


There is an old Byzantine manuscript that enumerates the Christian holy sites around Lake Galilee. This ancient text mentions familiar sites such as Capernaum and the Jordan River, but also a hill called “Dodekathronon (twelve seats)." It is believed that here Christ sat down and taught, and where He also multiplied the seven loaves and fed the four thousand.

Several noted modern-day New Testament scholars believe that the most likely site of this feeding is Tel Hadar, a little knoll rising out of the sands of the present-day swimming beaches.


The Tel Hadar site lies just off of the main road running alongside the eastern side of the Sea of Galilee, north of the Byzantine church ruins of Kursi. Although no Roman-era or Byzantine archeological ruins are to be found here, the site best fits the geography of the Gospel stories as related by Matthew and Luke, according to Bargil Pixner, a reputed scholar of the Sea of Galilee areas which are related to Jesus' ministry.


I am walking through the ancient ruins of Tel Hadar.

Archeological excavations that were undertaken at the site in the early 1970s and 1980s unearthed six archeological layers at Tel Hadar, beginning in the 15th and 16th centuries BC and ending in the eighth and ninth centuries BC, with the destruction of a Canaanite city. From there, any record of settlement disappears.

But in the excavations we find a prominent circle of stones on the hill - placed there perhaps by pilgrims of a bygone era, perhaps in reverence to the site considered by many as this place of the Dodekathronon.


More recently, an enormous two-ton rock, inscribed with New Testament verses relating the miracle of the feeding, two fish and seven loaves, was moved to the hilltop.


In the chronology of the Gospel text, Tel Hadar seems more likely than any spot to be the site of the miracle, since the Gospels have Jesus coming out of the region of Sidon to Decapolis (Mark 7:31), and healing people there. Immediately after these healings, both Matthew and Mark recall Him feeding the 4000.


Modern Times.


The mound is in ruins, and most of the year covered by bush. Since it is located inside public beaches the bush is cleared from time to time.


The Biblical Story.


From The Merged Gospels, story 110 we read the following:

And again in those days, when there was a great crowd, and they had nothing to eat, Jesus, calling His disciples, said to them, “I feel compassion on the crowd, because they have remained with Me already three days, and have nothing to eat, and I am not willing to send them away hungry. If I send them away to their home hungry, they will faint on the way, and some of them have come from a distance. And His disciples answered Him, “Where would anyone be able to find enough bread, so as to satisfy such a great crowd as these men here in a wilderness?” And He asked them, “How many loaves do you have?” And they said, “Seven.” And they also had a few small fish. And after He had blessed them, He said these also were to be served. And He directed the crowd to sit down on the ground. And taking the seven loaves and the fish, He gave thanks and broke them, and started giving them to His disciples, to serve them, and they, in turn, served them to the crowds. And they all ate and were satisfied. And they picked up what was left over of the broken pieces - seven large baskets full. And there were those who ate about four thousand men, besides women and children. And He sent the crowds away, and immediately He got into the boat with His disciples, and came to the region of Magadan/Dalmanutha. 

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