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Neot Kedumim The Biblical Landscape Reserve in Israel
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Olive Press
Visitors operate a 2,000-year-old olive press.

Oil in the Bible is olive oil. Olive trees thrive in Israel's rocky, well-drained hills, and were grown primarily for oil. Olive oil was probably as important in ancient Israel as petroleum is for us today. Olive oil was used for food, for treating wounds, and, most importantly, for lighting. An important ritual use was anointing kings, priests, and prophets. The word "messiah" derives from the Hebrew mashiakh, meaning "the one who is anointed" with olive oil. In the winter, visitors can harvest ripe olives and help make olive oil as it was done in ancient Israel. A mule pulls the rotating crushing stone but visitors who are strong enough can show how it was done all year round!

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