Olive Trees are now widely known for the precious olive oil that we retrieve from the fruits of this tree and also the olive wood. To the Christian religion, however, the Olive Tree has great spiritual importance. Olive Trees grow in many parts of the Holy Land but the richness and textures of the Bethlehem Olivewood is unmatched. One of the reasons for that is the fact that the oldest olive trees in the Holy Land are located in the city of Bethlehem and the older the olive tree is the more grains and textures you will find in that olive wood. Bethlehem olive wood is heavy, dense, and durable and it has distinctive colors that range in nuances of red and creamy pigments with irregular gray, brown, and wild black lines.
The olive tree is native to the Holy Land where it has been cultivated ever since ancient times. According to historians, the first olive groves took root in the Holy Land and along the coast of the eastern Mediterranean around 4,000 B.C.
The Olive Tree has both a sentimental and religious significance to all nations and all religions. In the Old Testament, olive oil was used to anoint prophets and kings, and to light the lamps at the temple of Jerusalem, the house of God. For nourishment, healing, cleansing, lighting, and symbolic purposes, olive oil was very important. According to the Bible, it is believed that Jesus prayed underneath an Olive Tree in the Garden of Gethsemane after the Last Supper.
This sacred tree is still in existence today. The Bible repeatedly refers to the Olive Tree as a symbol of peace, fertility, and prosperity. In the story of Noah’s Ark, a branch from an Olive Tree was brought back to the Ark by Noah’s Dove symbolizing peace. Also, on Palm Sunday, pilgrims carry Olive Wood branches commemorating the Lord’s entry into Jerusalem. Thus, the Olive Tree became a dominant symbol of the Holy Land.
“But I am like an olive tree flourishing in the house of God; I trust in God’s unfailing love forever and ever”