Precipice Mountain is home to the synagogue where Jesus preached,
and where history tells us the people of the city pursued Jesus.
The synagogue where Jesus is said to have preached has been marked for centuries,
as has the hilltop where it is located, Precipice Mountain.
Tradition also says Mary was here, frightened for her son until she saw him emerge unharmed.
Along the road leading to the top of Precipice Mountain you can find a church,
where Mary is said to have watched in fear for Jesus.
Atop the mountain, visitors can glance upon the spot where the cliff plunges into the Jezreel Valley.
Christians celebrate Nazareth in Galilee as the town where the Virgin Mary agreed to become pregnant with the Son of God.
It became Jesus’s home, as well as the Virgin Mary and her husband Joseph’s home,
after the Holy Family fled Herod the Great’s soldiers.
Nazareth isn’t referenced in the Old Testament and had the reputation of being an unbecoming city.
But since it was nestled in a hollow in the hills of Galilee and was hidden from the public eye,
it was the perfect setting for Jesus’s upbringing.
Today, Nazareth is dominated by a towering cupola from the Church of the Annunciation.
It is a massive two-story building with striking, modern architecture and colorful decorations.
It’s also the largest Christian church located in the Middle East.
It is believed that in this church, the archangel Gabriel came to Mary to tell
her she would become the mother to the Son of God.
To enter the lower church, visitors need to go to the west of the building,
where they will find a triple doorway with a façade of cream limestone.
On this limestone, visitors will found a quote in Latin: “The Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us” (John 1:14).
Inside the church sits a spiral staircase, which leads to the upper church,
which is used for the Catholic community of Nazareth.
The main entrance for this upper church can be found on the north side of the building.
On the northern side of the Church of the Annunciation is the Church of St. Joseph, which is also sometimes known as the Church of the Nutrition and Joseph’s Workshop.
This building sits very much in contrast of the Church of the Annunciation – it’s solid and modest. Visitors can follow stairs down to a crypt believed to be an early baptismal site.
More steps lead to an underground chamber believed to be Joseph’s workshop.
Four hundred meters north of the Church of Annunciation, visitors can find Mary’s well. It was near the village’s main freshwater spring, so Mary most likely would have visited this site daily, probably with her young son in tow.
The Scripture references the sites around Precipice Mountain on a few occasions:
Luke 1:26-38 tells of the Annunciation.
Matthew 2:23 and Luke 2:39-40 speak of the Holy Family settling in Nazareth.
In Luke 4:16-30, Matthew 13:53-58 and Mark 6:1-6, Jesus preaches in the synagogue.
In John 1:45-46, Nathanael asks “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?”
If you liked Precipice Mountain you’ll love the the galilee boat, see one of the most important archaeological finds