The Holy Land and Olive Oil in Scripture

The Bible calls the Holy Land a “land of milk and honey” and that is most certainly the truth. It is also a land of olive oil!

The ancients used olive oil for cooking, for annointing, for lighting, for health, really the list is endless. No seed oil for them!

And thou shalt command the children of Israel, that they bring unto thee pure olive oil beaten for the light, to cause a lamp to burn continually.

Exodus 27:20
Ancient oil lamps from the Bet Natif excavation in the Holy Land, (Yoli Schwartz/Israel Antiquities Authority)

Take thou also unto thee the chief spices, of flowing myrrh five hundred shekels, and of sweet cinnamon half so much, even two hundred and fifty, and of sweet calamus two hundred and fifty, and of cassia five hundred, after the shekel of the sanctuary, and of olive oil a hin. And thou shalt make it a holy anointing oil, a perfume compounded after the art of the perfumer; it shall be a holy anointing oil.

Exodus 30:23-25
ancient olive oil press in the Holy Land

and unleavened bread, and cakes unleavened mingled with oil, and wafers unleavened spread with oil; of fine wheaten flour shalt thou make them.

Exodus 29:2

But as for me, I am like a leafy olive-tree in the house of God; I trust in the mercy of God for ever and ever.

Psalms 52:10
Olive trees in the Holy Land
Bountiful olive trees in the Holy Land