Place name meaning “swelling,” “fat,” “bulge,” or “mound,” It became the proper name of a portion of the hill on which the city of David was built (2 Chron 27:3). The Ophel was just south of Mount Moriah, on which the temple was constructed, joining the old city with the area of Solomon’s palace and temple. The hill has been inhabited since pre-Israelite times by peoples such as the Jebusites from whom David took the site.Continue reading DEFINITION OF THE DAY (OPHEL)
Wine was one of the most valuable agricultural commodities in Bible times. People grew grapes to make their own wine, and many farmers produced wine for sale as a commercial product. This verse, from Jesus’ parable of the vineyard owner, gives insight into how grapes were grown and made into wine.
In the ancient world, towers were built to protect crops, roads, and cities. They were used both domestically to watch over a landowner’s fields and militarily in the defense of a city. Watchmen stood in towers, armed and ready to sound the alarm if enemies threatened their territory. The more towers a city had, the stronger it was thought to be (see Ps 48:12-14). The tower at the center of a city would have also served as a storehouse.