Herod’s Court showcases the ornate lifestyle of Herod Antipas, king of the area around Galilee. Jesus was sent to Antipas for judgment by Pontius Pilate, but Antipas returned him to Pilate without rendering a decision.
Pilate’s Court portrays the Fortress Antonia, where Pontius Pilate stayed in Jerusalem while serving as a Roman governor of the region. The white marble columns and steps of the structure set a regal tone for the place where Christ was condemned to die. Information from David Cater, general manager of The Living Word, notes that set designers took some liberties with this piece to create a more Roman image for this portion of the set.
The Upper Room and Bethany House represents the room where Jesus and his disciples shared The Last Supper. Beneath that room is a home setting, which exemplifies a typical dwelling of the region and period.
The Sanhedrin, or “Chamber of Hewn Stone,” is the setting where 70 hereditary members of the Jewish aristocracy held court. Because the body that met here had no authority to hand down a death sentence, Jesus was taken before Pilate for judgment under Roman law.
The Temple is one-quarter scale of the actual temple in Jerusalem during Christ’s life. Jesus clears the temple of “moneychangers” in one scene, overturning their tables and reminding that the temple is a place for prayer.
The hills on either side of the set buildings also play an important role in The Living Word, as the Sermon on the Mount, the Crucifixion and the Resurrection all take place here.