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View of the opening into a cistern.  The man in the image is leaning against the large stone that covers the cistern.  The square opening on the top is normally covered by the metal hatch that is leaning against the left side of the covering rock.

During the winter rains, water was diverted from the hillside into the cistern.  The hill actually slopes from upper left to lower right and a variety of carved channels diverted water into the cistern.  Note also, that debris, including animal droppings, were washed into the cistern along with the runoff water.

A bucket, tied to a rope, was lowered into the cistern and water was drawn up and placed in the small circular stone trough to the right of the cistern.

Question: which type of water would you prefer to drink?  Cistern? Well? Spring (= living water)?  See Jeremiah 2:13 and John 4:4-24.

To see the inside of a cistern Click Here.