The Golden Gate and strange graffiti?

In mid-December, I took a walk through an Arab cemetery right next to the Golden Gate outside the main walls of the old city of Jerusalem.  Its one of the oldest of the gates as some special significance as its meant to be where Jesus will go through when he returns to this city.

Ezekiel 44 :  1-3 mentions this site.  Thinking about it logically, it has been bricked up and a cemetery has been built in front making it unclean from a Jewish law point of view, but this would not stop the Messiah from returning back here.   The ground goes up some stepped layers with some trees in front meaning it would not be possible to get a car or horse to go in a straight line from the road from here.

I need to go back here and find out what exactly lies on the inside of this gate.

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You can see the iron railings at the bottom that go around this gate.

While I was here there was some graffiti scribbled in some European language on the wall.   I took some pictures of it with the intention of doing some research on what it might be, I do not know if its modern or old.  Google’s recently improved translator website thought would be good for this, as you can put in some writing of unknown tongue and it takes a guess of what the language is.

The top middle part of the text I wrote here.

vakaiekaa
ralawana
bihmaiviai
kamey
tagivetavia
qaranivav
22/5

Google tells me this is Finnish, perhaps its just some people’s names but it could not provide me with a translation.   If you have sharp eyes and can make out the text better, feel free to comment and have another attempt at what this could be.

My photographs of the wall  got the suspicion of some Israeli policeman walking across the path, mainly as I was the only the person in the whole ground and they asked to search by rucksack and look at my passport, they then spoke in Hebrew on a radio to headquarters, probably to check the number on my visa was legitimate, they then let me go.   This might seem like a nuisance to have to go through to, but its something you get used to and quite necessary in this part of the world.

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Church in a pub

On Sunday morning went to my usual church then went out for lunch, usual quite relaxing day.  The talk in the morning was part of a series on distractions which is something that causes more problems with things for me than I can think of.

In the evening I went to the Isambard Kingdom Brunel pub (a Wetherspoons pub named after the famous industrial engineer who lived in my city of Portsmouth, UK) and met up with Mark Rodel reverend of another church in Portsmouth who has a blog and in addition to running his own church likes to meet up with anyone in this pub most Sunday evenings for a chance to relax and have a beer and chat to another small crowd.   Something different from regular church or cell group, (which is a mid-week church meeting someone’s house in a informal closer knit group for regular church people) but this is different as provides a chance for people with casual questions about Christianity and church in a familiar public environment.

For me I think many Christians don’t always visualise the fact church can seem very scary place for many people that have never been before to church, have fallen away, or are just plain shy, and this is a good place to get to know people and get questions answered on many things on church life.  Jesus spent a lot of time in public places speaking, so its only natural that fellow believers could sometimes get together in a place most people are familiar with and invite people to come and chat about whatever they wish.  Mark uses a few unusual visual cues to illustrate things from the bible and this week he got us to make some paper boats to float on a washing up bowl of water he borrowed from the bar.

Anyway there was just about 7 of us from different churches around the city, it was nice getting to know different people from quite a few backgrounds.   Will try come along semi regularly while I am still here in the UK.