The Good Samaritan Museum

The museum at the Good Samaritan Inn archeological site by Ma’ale Adumim is the only mosaic museum in the country and one of only three in the world. Mosaics and other artifacts unearthed in Judea, Samaria and Gaza are on display at the museum. Some of the mosaics on display have been removed from various sites to protect them from harm, while others are reconstructions. Work on the mosaics, to prepare them for the public eye, has taken many years during which skilled professionals excavated the mosaics, preserved them and, where necessary, reconstructed them. During the preservation process, some mosaics were cast in natural materials such as lime, sand or cement as they would have been in ancient times.

The Good Samaritan Museum is situated halfway between Jerusalem and Jericho, and is associated with the biblical Ma’ale Adumim which marked the border between the tribes of Judah and Benjamin (Joshua 16, 7; 18, 17). During the Byzantine era, the site was associated with the inn mentioned in the Parable of the Good Samaritan from the New Testament (Luke 10, 25-37). Members of three different religions appear in the parable: a Cohen, a Levi and a kind Samaritan. The design of the museum is based on the parable, as is the choice of mosaics.

Hours: Sun-Thu 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

From the Scriptures:

Luke 10:25–37

“Behold, a certain lawyer stood up and tested him, saying, ‘Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?’

He said to him, ‘What is written in the law? How do you read it?’

He answered, ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, with all your mind, [Deuteronomy 6:5]; and your neighbour as yourself [Leviticus 19:18].’

He said to him, ‘You have answered correctly. Do this, and you will live.’

But he, desiring to justify himself, asked Jesus, ‘Who is my neighbour?’

Jesus answered, ‘A certain man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and he fell among robbers, who both stripped him and beat him, and departed, leaving him half dead. By chance a certain priest was going down that way. When he saw him, he passed by on the other side. In the same way a Levite also, when he came to the place, and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a certain Samaritan, as he travelled, came where he was. When he saw him, he was moved with compassion, came to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. He set him on his own animal, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him. On the next day, when he departed, he took out two denarii, and gave them to the host, and said to him, 'Take care of him. Whatever you spend beyond that, I will repay you when I return.' Now which of these three do you think seemed to be a neighbour to him who fell among the robbers?’

He said, ‘He who showed mercy on him.’

Then Jesus said to him, ‘Go and do likewise’.”