DAY 14 – SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 16: SOUTHERN BORDER CROSSING INTO ISRAEL, RED SEA, TIMNAH, MACHTESH RAMON, TEL AVIV, NIGHT FLIGHT HOME
We re-crossed back into Israel today. For our last full day here in Israel, it was once again a partly sunny and warm day, with highs in the 80s in the south. We had clouds and a few sprinkles towards the end of the day, the first time all trip!
Rabin Border Crossing / Red Sea
It was about 6 a.m. when our “wake up call” (e.g. Sammy) stirred us out of our individual tents. It was certainly a unique stay here in Wadi Rum. Following breakfast and loading the buses, we drove just shy of an hour to the Rabin Border Crossing. Here we said goodbye to our Jordanian guides who assisted us through the Jordan portion of the crossing. We then walked across to the Israeli side where we went through security and passport checks. It took a bit longer than usual today. Once complete the process we were greeted by Shlomo and Ralph, David, and Meshiach. We drove to the Coral Beach national park where some enjoyed some time swimming in the Red Sea. Others enjoyed the beach and beautiful views of the clear water and coral.
“Today was our last full day of the trip. Bitter-sweet for sure. After the crossing back into Israel from Jordan (it felt so good!), we swam in the Red Sea before driving north. God journeyed with us during the entire trip! What an incredible tour!” -Tour Member-
Timnah / Tabernacle Model
Next, we drove north to Timnah Park. This was once an Egyptian copper mind back in the 13-12th centuries BC. Towards the back of the park we visited a full-scale model of the Tabernacle. We walked through together, guided by a Messianic believer. We recalled what the author of Hebrews said about Christ fulfilling the role of High Priest through His once-and-for-all sacrifice on the cross (Heb. 9).
Following grabbing a bite to eat and some ice cream at Yovata (a dairy-kibbutz just north of Timnah), we drove up through the Southern Negev and the Desert of Paran to Machtesh Ramon. This is Israel’s “grand canyon” featuring a unique geological crater and formations. As the sun set, we enjoyed a great view from the rim.
Continuing north through the Zin Desert (Numbers 13, 20), the western Shephelah and Coastal Plain, we enjoyed a farewell dinner in Jaffa. We then drove to the Ben Gurion Airport for our night flights for the majority of the group. Others in the group arranged their own flights home. We plan to arrive back home in the States Sunday.