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Gennesaret, Ginosar: Jesus Boat

Photo Gallery

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Places of Interest

Gennesaret, Ginosar: Jesus Boat at
Yigal Allon Museum

 

Introduction

Welcome to Gennesaret (Ginosar). Many significant events from the Bible took place here. Here are the highlights.

  • After Jesus fed the 5,000, walked on water, and calmed the storm on the Sea of Galilee, they landed at the beach here at Gennesaret.

  • Jesus healed many sick here.

Location

1. Gennesaret, also called Ginosar, lies on the western shore of the Sea of Galilee north of Magda in the Ginosar Valley.

 

2. The beautiful countryside and rich farmlands have caused the area to be called the Paradise of the Galilee.

3. During Jesus' lifetime, Ginosar was a prosperous town known as Gennesaret, and the name Ginosar appears in the New Testament.

 

4. Ginosar was an ancient city that has been excavated. Today, Ginosar is home to Kibbutz Ginosar. The main attractions in Ginosar are the Yigal Allon Museum, which houses what has become known as the Jesus Boat, and the place from where boats today depart and arrive for those taking boat rides on the Sea of Galilee.

Historical Background of Gennesaret or Ginasor

 

1. The name Ginosar is the Hebrew pronunciation of the name of the ancient town Gennesaret. Josephus Flavius, the famous Holly Land historian, described it as a place of fertile soil (in its Hebrew version, the name Ginosar means "rich garden"). The town is mentioned several times in the New Testament.

2. The name may originate from the Hebrew word kinnor ("harp" or "lyre") - which the lake's shape resembles. It has also been called the Lake of Gennesaret or the Sea of Gennesaret ( Luke 5:1) after the name of a small fruitful plain that lies on its western side.

3. In the Bible, Ginosar is called Kinneret, Chinnereth, or Chinneroth. It is also called Dalmanutha in the Gospel of Mark. Three thousand years ago, the town was so prominent it gave its name to the adjacent lake- Lake Kinneret (the Sea of Galilee). Kinneret is mentioned in the Book of Joshua, the Book of Numbers, and Deuteronomy. The name changed over the years to Gennesaret, and finally, at some time in the 1st century AD, the name was romanized to be called Ginosar. In the Talmud, the sages praise the fertile lands and abundant produce in Ginosar. Gennesaret was also described by the Roman historian Josephus Flavius as a land of fertile soil. Archaeological findings show that the ancient town was home to Jews and believers of a polytheistic religion living side by side.

 
The Jesus Boat at the Yigal Allon Museum

 

In 1986, two brothers from the Kibbutz discovered the remains of an ancient boat on the northwest shore of the Sea of Galilee. The boat measured 27 feet long by 7.5 feet wide and was constructed of ten different kinds of wood. It was designed for fishing close to the shore. The extraction and preservation process of the boat was long and complex.

The boat was retrieved and preserved; carbon dating determined that the boat came from 100 BC - 70 AD. This means that it is one of the same boats used by fishermen during Jesus' lifetime. Indeed, it fits the many descriptions of boats from the Bible, as the one mentioned in the Gospel of Luke. A sign that the boat relates to sacred times was given at the time of its discovery: the two brothers who discovered the boat reported seeing a double rainbow in the sky on the same day. 

 

Places of Interest (Please See Maps Above)

 

1. Feeding of the 5,000 location
2. Mountain upon which Jesus prayed
3. Departure beach
4. Bethsaida
5. Capernaum
6. Place Jesus walked on water
7. Gennesaret
8. Sea of Galilee

 

Gennesaret in the Bible

 

1. Jesus Feeds the Five Thousand on the Eastern Side of the Sea of Galilee
Matthew 14:13-21:  Now when Jesus heard this, he withdrew from there in a boat to a desolate place by himself. But when the crowds heard it, they followed him on foot from the towns. 14 When he went ashore he saw a great crowd, and he had compassion on them and healed their sick. 15 Now when it was evening, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a desolate place, and the day is now over; send the crowds away to go into the villages and buy food for themselves.” 16 But Jesus said, “They need not go away; you give them something to eat.” 17 They said to him, “We have only five loaves here and two fish.” 18 And he said, “Bring them here to me.” 19 Then he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass, and taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven and said a blessing. Then he broke the loaves and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. 20 And they all ate and were satisfied. And they took up twelve baskets full of the broken pieces left over. 21 And those who ate were about five thousand men, besides women and children.

 

2. Jesus Walks on the Water
Matthew 14:22-33: Immediately he made the disciples get into the boat and go before him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowds. 23 And after he had dismissed the crowds, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone, 24 but the boat by this time was a long way from the land, beaten by the waves, for the wind was against them. 25 And in the fourth watch of the night he came to them, walking on the sea. 26 But when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were terrified, and said, “It is a ghost!” and they cried out in fear. 27 But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid.”

28 And Peter answered him, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.” 29 He said, “Come.” So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus. 30 But when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, “Lord, save me.” 31 Jesus immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him, saying to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?” 32 And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased. 33 And those in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.”

 

3. Jesus Heals the Sick in Gennesaret, on the Western Side of the Sea of Galilee

Matthew 14:34–36: And when they had crossed over, they came to land at Gennesaret. 35 And when the men of that place recognized him, they sent around to all that region and brought to him all who were sick 36 and implored him that they might only touch the fringe of his garment. And as many as touched it were made well.

 
Faith Lesson 

 

1.  Jesus embedded in the lives of His disciples that He was God. Do we believe in the deity of Christ and that He was God in the flesh?

 

2. Like Peter and the disciples, are we of little faith sometimes?

 

3. Like the disciples, we are often surrounded by serious problems. Do we realize Jesus cares for us during our storms?

 

4. Like the disciples, we can often feel tired and alone in our trials and problems. Do we understand that we are not alone and that God is caring for us?

 

5. Peter walked on the water for a moment and then took his eyes off Jesus and focused on the storm. Therefore, he sank into the water. Do we understand that to navigate the storms in our lives, we must keep our eyes on Jesus despite the raging problems around us?

 

6. It appears Jesus sent the storm to teach His disciples who He was and their need for faith in Him. Do we understand that Jesus also sends us storms to teach us the same truths?

 

7. Jesus and the disciples often had long days of exhausting ministry. Are we willing to do the same? 
 

 

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