What Happens in Corinth Stays in Corinth
Well, I have completed my recap of our journey through Egypt. Some of the highlights: Abu Simbel, Great Pyramids, Luxor, Nile Cruise, breakfast at our tour guide Osman’s home. Some of the not-so-highlights: night trains from Cairo to Aswan and then Luxor to Cairo, the nasty Zoser Hotel. I know there is much more I could write about, but I feel like I have hit the main protions of our trip and must move on to tell about our trip down to the Peleponnese.
Our first stop on the excursion through Southern Greece was the famous (more like infamous) city of Corinth. Honestly, this has been one of my favorite ancient Greek cities…go figure. Corinth is a town where Paul spent 18 months evangelizing. It was a thriving port city located on the narrowest point between two Seas. Amazingly, before the canal was built they had a system set up to actually pull large merchant vessels out of the water, drag them across the 10-mile stretch of land, and deposit the ship on the other side. These days they have a canal built between the two where several from our group bungee-jumped.
Anyway, we got to see several cool structures in Corinth, like the remains of Apollo’s Temple, the bema where Paul gave his defence before the men of the city, the ancient road leading down to the Sea, and Acrocorinth.
Acrocorinth was a fortress/temple area situated on a moutain overlooking the city. We were able to hike to the top and see the gorgeous view from the old fortress walls. We also ate lunch on the foundations of the Temple of Aphrodite, the goddess of love, who was the main goddess of the city. Her priestesses were also temple prostitutes. It was explained to us that the prostitution/worship did not actually take place on top of Acrocorinth, but rather in the cult centers throughout the city. This was a sailor town, so think Amsterdam mixed with Las Vegas. To quote Obi-Wan, “You will never find a more wretched hive of scumb and villainy.” It’s amazing to me that even in a town with as little moral conscience as Corinth, the church thrived. Albeit, they most certainly had their share of problems, but the letters to the church in Corinth make much more sense in light of the moral compass (i.e. paganism, fornication, etc.) of the city.