As I read Genesis 14, I had this sense of curiosity about the Dead Sea so I googled information about it and took some notes; so I am sharing them with y’all. Enjoy!
All these latter kings joined forces in the Valley of Siddim (that is, the Dead Sea Valley).Genesis 14:3, NIV
This is the point where I became curious about the Dead Sea because the notes in the study Bible say this: This Valley of Siddim is most likely submerged under the waters of the Dead Sea today.
The question opened the doors to many things, here they are:
- The Dead Sea is the lowest point on earth. It is he deepest hypersaline* in the world with a depth of 1,286 feet below sea level.
- The Dead Sea is a lake of light turquoise water with salt crystals jutting out of it.
- The Dead Sea is located in the Jordan Rift Valley, bordered by Israel to the east and Jordan to the west.
- The Dead Sea is one the saltiest bodies of water.
- The Dead Sea got its name because water flows into it, but doesn’t flow out. It is also devoid of any life forms, which is why visitors from Rome to Judea called it the Dead Sea.
- The Dead Sea’s water has been evaporating, making the minerals more concentrated, more reason for sea creatures to not be able to survive in it..
- The Dead Sea is called the Salt Lake in Hebrew.
- During the Roman Era, Salt was more valuable than gold or silver, with armies being paid in salt. The Latin word of Salt is “Sal” which forms the basis of the word “salary”.
I know, you probably already knew all these facts, but there were some I didn’t know and since I wrote the down, I decided I should share.
The Dead Sea has also been mentioned a few times this year at my church, key points of those mentions that have stuck around my head are:
- We are called to be the salt of the world. The Dead Sea is filled with salt, but it’s also filled with other minerals that do not allow the water to flow out. Once salt looses its saltiness, it cannot be regained. “Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can you make it salty again? Have salt among youselves, and be at peace with each other.” Mark 9:50, NIV
- Do we allow what God pours into us to flow out of us? The Dead Sea gets its water from the Sea of Galilee, but it doesn’t keep flowing, it stays stuck there. Similarly, when God blesses us and we hoard those blessings, we are reacting like the Dead Sea. We are keeping our blessings to ourselves, instead of sharing it with others as God intended. We are called to be an open basin of water.
Was there anything mentioned above that you didn’t know of?
* A hypersaline lake is a landlocked body of water that contains significant concentrations of sodium chloride or other salts, with saline levels surpassing that of ocean water