The Sea of Galilee often appears in the New Testament as many events in Jesus’ life happened in the region of Galilee. But, why do the ancient Israelites refer to the body of water like the musical instrument of David?
Sea of Galilee
The Sea of Galilee is a vast freshwater lake that supports the flourishing fishing industry. The towns, such as Chorazin, Bethsaida, Magdala, Tiberias, and Capernaum (the dominant setting of Jesus’ ministry) surround it and depend on its commercial area.
Many of Jesus’ significant moments happened in the areas as well. He called Peter, Andrew, James, and John, working as fishermen in the lake (Matthew 4:13-22).
Furthermore, the beloved stories of Jesus’ miracles happened in the area, such as the calming of the storm (Mark 4:35-41) and the walking above the water surface (John 6:16-21). Two other remarkable miracles near the lake were feeding the five thousand and the four thousand (Matthew 15:29-39 and Luke 9:10-17).
But, do you know that Jesus called the Sea of Galilee with a different name? He called it “Yam Kineret.” It is a Hebrew name from “Kinor,” a musical instrument.
Kinor is a lyre or a ten-stringed harp, famously used by King David. But, what is the connection between the lyre and the vast freshwater?
The Sea of Galilee, when looked at on a map from above, is shaped like an oval. It reminded the people of the shape of Kinor. Moreover, the fresh breeze from the sea has a very pleasing sound. It recalls the wondrous tune of the lyre, just like how it soothed King Saul’s anxiety when David would play it for him.
Today, the Sea of Galilee remains a significant site in the region. It is a primary tourist spot for the state of Israel and the main source of drinking water.
Reference: Youtube | Israel Institute of Biblical Studies