By Dianne E. Butts:
Recently my husband, Hal, and I took a vacation to Orlando, Florida, and spent a day at a theme park. But this park wasn’t filled with rides based on movie themes. Rather it was all about the Bible—both Old Testament and New Testament. It’s not much of a stretch to say that day we were finding God in The Holy Land Experience.
Our day started with worship led by singers on the steps of a replica of Herod’s first-century Temple. The music was wonderful and heart stirring. We continued to see those same singers in live patriotic dramas and biblical reenactments throughout the day.
We saw the Garden of Eden and Noah’s ark with giraffes. There was a wax museum with replicas of Jesus in many scenes from His birth, throughout His life, and also His death and resurrection.
We also saw an awesome live drama in the Church of the Nations of the life of Christ, from Gabriel’s announcement to Mary, to many of the healings Jesus performed, to Jesus’ crucifixion and final battle with Satan surrounded by magnificent angels!
We took a tour of a model of the city of Jerusalem as it was in 66 A.D. This is the largest model of Jerusalem in the United States and includes Herod’s Temple and palace as well as “the place of the skull” which many believe was Golgotha where the crucifixion took place.
We took an hour-long tour of the “Scriptorium,” which is a walking and talking tour through the history of the Bible, God’s written Word. In this museum there are many actual copies of ancient texts. The narration told the story of many people who literally gave their very lives so that we can have the Bible today, and it was very moving. Most impressive for me was the Bible that was smeared with the blood of the owner, martyred simply for owning it. What a privilege we have today to so freely own many copies of the Bible. How sad so few Americans actually read them.
We also saw beautiful prayer gardens and dancing fountains and wonderful, lavish bookstores!
The Holy Land Experience also displays a life-sized, exact replica of “The Jesus Boat” which I wrote an article about here back in March: “Finding God in the Jesus Boat.”
We had a wonderful vacation with a lot of fun adventures, but I can tell you one of the biggest highlights of our trip that I will remember for a lifetime was our day spent finding God in The Holy Land Experience.
Here’s an interview with Les, who portrays Jesus in the productions:
From The Holy Land Experience website: “It is our (the performers’) mission to communicate the gospel truth of God’s word through our exciting and moving presentations which range from the theatrical and musical to dramatic historical recreations.”
For additional videos, location and hours of operation, visit (www.holylandexperience.com).
© Dianne E. Butts. Dianne’s latest book is, Deliver Me, for those in an unplanned pregnancy or with one in their past (“Book of the Year” winner-Christian Small Publishers Assoc.; 2012 Golden Scroll Nonfiction Book of the Year finalist). Her next book, Grandparenting through Obstacles: Overcoming Family Challenges to Reach Your Grandchildren for Christ, releases August 17, 2012. www.DeliverMeBook.blogspot.com