DAY 10 – MONDAY MAY 13: PRECIPICE OF NAZARETH, MEGIDDO, MT. CARMEL, CAESAREA, JERUSALEM
While the prediction was for hotter temps this week, the day was once again very nice, with blue skies and temps in the 80s. The breeze in the afternoon was very pleasant along the Med Sea. We ended the day in Jerusalem!
Precipice of Nazareth
What a gorgeous sunrise it was over the Sea of Galilee this morning! After breakfast, we checked out of our hotel and drove to the Lower Galilee. We read from Matthew 6 as we traveled to the Precipice of Nazareth. The precipice is located away form the ancient and modern city of Nazareth today. Here, we viewed the Jezreel Valley for the first time! This is Israel’s largest agricultural valley. In and around the valley we could see Mt. Tabor (Judges 4-5), the Hill of Moreh (Judges 6-7), Mt. Gilboa (1 Sam. 31), and Mt. Carmel to the west (1 Kings 18). We read from Luke 4 and John 1 as we considered Philip’s invitation to us to “come and see” Jesus. It was a great start to the day!
Driving across the Jezreel Valley, we arrived at Megiddo. This was the most important and strategically-located ancient city in this region. First, we saw a map of the area and a model of the tel. Then we walked to the top of the site, seeing three different ancient gates, Solomon’s stables, the palace area, and the grain silo. We also gained another view of all the sites we saw from the Precipice. We also remembered Rev 16 and the reference to Armageddon. When Christ comes again, God will will have the final word and every knee will bow to the King! We left the site by descending down through an impressive water system chiseled through the bedrock.
“I now fully understand what Dr. John told us on the first day of the trip, that ‘we will not be able to explain this trip to anyone once we get home!’ This trip has been so incredible for me that there will not be words to describe it to anyone. Life-changing in every way!” -Tour Member-
The Carmel Range
After a great lunch at a Druze restaurant, we drove to Muhraqa, the top of Mt. Carmel. Here we read from 1 Kings 18 about Elijah defeating the prophets of Baal here. We also remembered other connections to the Bible (e.g. Isaiah 35, Songs of Songs 7, Amos 1, etc…). The view of the Jezreel Valley from the roof of the chapel was incredible! WIth the good visibility, we could see almost the entire valley below, and even the Hills of Gilead across the Jordan River.
Our last stop of the day was Caesarea. The city was built by Herod the Great from 22-10 BC). Sitting in the theater, we read from Acts 9 (Paul sails to Tarsus from here), Acts 10 (Peter & Cornelius), Acts 12 (Herod Agrippa), Acts 21 (Paul staying with Philip), and Acts 26 (Paul’s testimony). We also saw the palace, the fresh-water swimming pool, the hippodrome, mosaics, statues, and the area of the harbor and Temple of Augustus. Before leaving the site, we saw the aqueduct.
Our drive to Jerusalem took about two hours. Ascending into the Hill Country of Judah, we arrived out our hotel for a late dinner. Following our meal, many in the group enjoyed an optional walk to and through the Old City and to the Western Wall. We are excited to be here in Israel’s capital for 3 full days!