I’m about to wrap up my second full day in Israel. Here’s what’s going on…
At the church in Nazareth
Wild flowers on the way to the Sea of Galilee
Wednesday afternoon we arrived and stayed our first night in Tel Aviv.
- We stayed close to Joppa, the city that Jonah caught a boat going the wrong direction and also the city that Peter saw a vision to eat things that he thought were unclean. Because of Peter’s vision, Joppa might be called the city where outreaches to Gentiles began.
- I slept thru the night. (Praise God!)
Thursday we visited several sights:
- First stop was Caesarea, a beautiful city with a port built by Herod the Great not long before Jesus birth. Peter went to visit Cornelius there, preaching to the first Gentile converts. Paul had a hearing before Felix in Caesarea before going to Rome as a guest of the Roman government.
- Second stop was Mt. Carmel, where Abraham offered Isaac as a sacrifice by faith.
- Next we visited Megiddo and Tel Yizre’el, where Ahab and Jezebel had a summer palace. It is also the place where Jezebel was thrown off the walls to her death.
- First days learning: If Ahab was judged on his accomplishments he would be considered a success. The Bible says otherwise. It was never the intention of God for the King to become powerful and famous. He wanted him to just be obedient and dependent on him. God’s metrics are different than mine, most of the time.
Today we visited several more sights:
- First, the ancient synagogue of Arbel, located on the road between Nazareth, Jesus boyhood home, and the Sea of Galilee. The fields were full of wild flowers. As I spent time reflecting this morning, I could imagine Jesus teaching his followers not too worry and using the wildflowers as examples.
- Next we went to Zippori, an ancient city where Jesus father Joseph may have helped in construction
- We spent the afternoon with an Orthodox Jewish community, making bread and learning about life 2000 years ago. Absolutely one of the most fascinating experiences in my life.
- In the late afternoon we visited Nazareth and the church that sits where the boyhood home of Jesus probably was. We received a private tour of excavations not normally seen. It will change how I approach preaching on Christmas.
I am now back in our hotel on the Sea of Galilee. Hoping to get another good nights sleep then it’s off for more adventure tomorrow.
If you’d like to see more pictures, you can click HERE.