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  • Holy Land Israel Tour Trip: April-May, 2023, 17-Day Trip |

    Holy Land Tour Trip to Is rael The Holy Land Experience Trip of a Lifetime April 28~May 14, 2023 17-Day Trip ​ Would you like to have a life-changing and never-to-be-forgotten experience? If so, it is our joy to invite you to join us on a trip of a lifetime to the Land of the Bible, where you will find a new dimension in understanding the Bible and the life of Jesus. We will take a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee, visit places where Jesus walked, lived, taught, performed miracles, walked on the water, calmed the sea, and where He was crucified and raised from the dead. We will immerse ourselves in the Land of the Bible and experience it to the depths of our souls.​ You will never be the same or read your Bible the same after a trip like this. ​ If it's Bible you want, then this trip is for you. At each site, we will give biblical and historical teaching along with a faith lesson. Therefore, this trip is designed to provide an in-depth study and perspective from the Scriptures of the events and places of the Bible. ​ We are delighted to share that Israel has removed every Covid vaccination mandate plus every other restriction, so visiting Israel is normal with no burdens whatsoever. As a result, we are rejoicing and really excited about our upcoming trips to Israel. ​ Our Holy Land Trips are open to anyone around the world that is able to travel to Israel with a valid Passport. ​ ___________________ ​ "An absolutely amazing trip with a guy who knows his Bible and can relate it to you in-country. I've gone with this dear friend of mine to Israel twice. It's an 11 out of 10 trip!" ​ Dan Reeves ​ Quick Links ​ Holy Land Trip Registration Form (Required for each person) ​ Deposit Payment ~ $500 USD ​ Final Payment ~ $1,250 USD ​ Hotel Reserva tion Booking Section ​ Promotional Brochures ​ About Your Tour Hosts Trip Registration Info ​ Itinerary ​ Holy Land Trip Travel Orientation ​ Helpful Holy Land Learning Resources The Holy Land Experience! 17-Day Trip ​ Holy Land Site Fee: $1,750 USD Items covered by Holy Land Site Ministries: ​ Transportation in Israel Via a Deluxe A/C Motorcoach ​ All Park & Entrance Passes ​ Holy Land Site Tour Guide and Bible Teacher, Dr. Fink ​ Wireless Headsets for a Better Listening Experience Individual Costs : $2,550 USD This cost can change depending on individual preferences and location. ​ To keep our trips as affordable as possible, we allow individuals to book their own lodging and airfare. Also, to see as many sites as possible and keep costs down, we have folks pack a sack lunch. The hotels will provide breakfast and dinners if desired. We recommend eating breakfast at the hotels for time and convenience sake. For those desiring to experience the culture, you can enjoy eating dinners out at the local restaurants of your choice. Items to be covered by each individual: ​ The costs below are close estimates. Your price may vary depending on airfare from your location, room selections, and how expensive you want to eat. ​ Sack Lunch & Dinner Meals in Israel ........ $400 per person (Breakfast included in Hotel cost) ​ Lodging in Israel (found on itinerary) .... $1,100 per person (Based on private, double occupancy rooms.) ​ Airfare ........................................................ $1,000 per person ​ Personal transportation In Israel .................. $50 per person Note: Personal transportation means travel from Ben Gurion Airport to Kfar Maccabiah Hotel & Suites in Tel Aviv, and from Prima Park Hotel in Jerusalem to Ben Gurion Airport. Taxis are the best method for this transportation. Due to multiple arrivals and departures from passengers, it is not possible for us to attend everyone’s various time schedules. However, we are happy to help in any way possible with these arrangements.​ ​ Total Estimated Cost of Trip ​ Holy Land Site Fee $1,750 ​ Individual Costs $2,550 ​ Total $4,300 USD THIS IS A CUSTOM-DESIGNED TRIP If you want to spend more time in Israel and see more holy sites, then this trip is designed for you. Most trips to the Holy Land allow only around 7-8 full days in Israel. This severely limits what can be seen. Therefore, most who go to the Holy Land miss out on many significant holy sites as a result. This trip will have you in Israel for 13 full touring days. You will, therefore, see almost everything significant there is to see in Israel. A 17-day trip like this normally is quite expensive (if you can find one). Why can we do it so inexpensively? Because we are eliminating tour companies, travel agencies, tour guides, etc., and are providing these services instead. We are also allowing you to book your own airfare, lodging, and some of your meals. And lastly, we are staying in nice, clean hotels/hostels instead of expensive hotels. It is our pleasure to serve you and our Lord Jesus Christ in offering you this special and affordable trip of a lifetime. Because this is a custom trip, each participant will be required to book their own airfare, lodging, and purchase some of their own meals. PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS This trip is not for the weak and faint of heart! There will be a fair amount of walking, some hiking, times when it could be warm (Dead Sea area), etc. Those considering this trip need to be in pretty good shape and able to withstand some discomfort at times due to heat, walking, hiking, etc. Our estimated walking distance will be about 2 -4 miles (3-6 km.) a day. GROUP SIZE LIMIT In order to have a more intimate and better experience, we limit our group size to around 35 people. This allows us to be more efficient and see more places in Israel. Larger teams bring a different dynamic that slows things down and makes travel more difficult. AIR TRAVEL Each person will be responsible for booking their own air travel to Israel (to and from Ben Gurion Airport). Please make plans to arrive with plenty of time to attend our orientation and get-acquainted meeting at 7:00 pm at the Kfar Maccabiah Hotel & Suites in Tel Aviv. For those having the time and resources, arriving a day early will give you a chance to rest up and get better prepared for your experience in Israel. Due to customs and obtaining visas, please allow 3 hours from airport arrival to hotel arrival. The hotel is about 15 minutes from the airport, depending on traffic. ​ Note: For those having the time and resources, arriving a day early will give you a chance to rest up and get better prepared for your experience in Israel. TRANSPORTATION IN ISRAEL We will be transported via a large, air-conditioned motorcoach. We will also use Jerusalem's light rail train service for a couple of days in Jerusalem. LODGING IN ISRAEL We will be staying at hotels with private rooms and bathrooms during our time in Israel. Our itinerary shows the hotels where we will stay (a total of three: Tel Aviv, Tiberias, and Jerusalem). Click here for hotel reservation links . ​ LUGGAGE You will be allowed one carry-on piece of luggage and one suitcase. Because each person will be responsible for transporting their luggage from the motorcoach to the hotels, it is highly recommended to keep your suitcase under 40 pounds. This will also prevent you from an extra charge by airlines for heavy luggage. MEALS IN ISRAEL Each person will be responsible for paying for their own lunches and dinners. ​ Breakfast - The hotels will provide breakfast if desired. Some will provide dinners as well. These can be paid for when you book your lodging or at the hotels. It's ideal to eat breakfast at the hotels as it's handy. However, you can eat your breakfast if desired at a local restaurant or made by hand. ​ Lunch - Because eating out is expensive in Israel, time-consuming with a large group, and we will not always be close to a restaurant, each trip participant will prepare themself a daily sack lunch. Each day around noon, we will take a break to eat, or you can eat and snack as you wish. Lunch items can be purchased at local grocery stores, and the hotels will have refrigerators in the rooms. ​Dinner – On your own. Enjoy the local culture as you eat at local restaurants or the hotel if you prefer. PARK & ENTRANCE PASSES Holy Land Site Ministries will pay for all park and entrance fees to all sites. You will be responsible for paying any entrance fees you want to see during your free time. WHAT WILL OUR VISITS TO EACH SITE BE LIKE? Our visits will normally last around two hours. We will begin with some orientation of the site. Then we'll do a walking tour to see the site and its points of interest. Afterward, we'll find a quiet spot to reflect on the main events from the Bible that happened at the site and close with a faith lesson to learn the key truths God would desire to teach us. Some of the Bible teachings might be filmed for publishing on our website. We'll then end our visit with some free time. DOCUMENTS A valid U.S. Passport is required. Passports must have at least six months left before they expire for travel to Israel. TRIP PREPARATION Please utilize the videos and info on our website that provide help and orientation to better understand many of the biblical sites we will be visiting, the history of Israel, and other helpful info. In addition, we will provide helpful info leading up to our trip that will help prepare you to get the most out of your holy land experience. ​ We also ask that you acquaint yourself with our Travel Orientation Material found on our website. You will find it extremely helpful. TIME OF YEAR FOR THIS TRIP We’ve chosen these dates to visit Israel because the weather is stable, the days are longer, and there are no Jewish Holidays that will interfere with our travels. DAILY ITINERARY Please take into consideration that there might be slight adjustments to the schedule depending on things out of our control. Additionally, if the team would like some flexibility in seeing sights, we are happy to do this if possible. ​ MONEY IN ISRAEL Credit cards and Dollars are readily accepted, and Shekels can be drawn from ATMs. INTERNET IN ISRAEL Phone SIM cards can be purchased for around $39.99 if you want Internet service at all times while in Israel. You can also activate your phone for international service. ​ If you don't have Internet via your phone service, at each hotel where we will be staying, free Internet service is provided. Also, the tour bus has free Internet service as well. ​ DIGITAL MAPS OF DAILY TRIP ITINERARY For each tour trip itinerary, you will see at the bottom of each day's itiner ary a link to see a Google Map of the route and sites we'll be seeing each day. Here's an example: Tour Day 1: Google Map Itinerary ​ ​DAILY SCHEDULE We will leave our place of lodging each day at 7 :45 am and return around 4:00 - 5:00 pm. From this time on, you will have free time to eat, relax, see the local sites and culture, etc. ​ PERSONAL TRAVEL IN ISRAEL You can take a taxi, walk, or use the bus or light rail train system. The best option is to make sure you have Internet in Israel (you can activate your phone or get an Israeli SIM card) and use Google Maps. It will tell you exactly which bus, light rail train, or walking route to use. It also works in real-time, so you can see exactly when buses and light rail trains are arriving and departing. ​ AGE LIMIT The minimum age for trip participants is 12 years old unless other arrangements have been made with tour hosts. ​ ITINERARY Please see our detailed itinerary below. Anchor 1 TOUR HOSTS Todd & Letsy Fink More about the Finks TRIP REGISTRATION INFO HOLY LAND TRIP NEWS Israel is open for tourism and has no vaccination mandates or restrictions at this time. ​ REGISTRATION DEPOSIT A registration deposit of $500 USD is required to register and secure your spot on the Holy Land Experience Team. Before paying your deposit, please fill out the online registration form. We will then notify you of your acceptance into the trip team, and payment of your deposit can then be made. After being notified of your acceptance on the team, you can pay your deposit at your earliest convenience. This will ensure your spot in the group. ​ REGISTRATION, DEPOSIT, AND FINAL PAYMENT LINKS ​ Holy Land Trip Registration Form (Required for each person) ​ Deposit Payment ~ $500 USD ​ Final Payment ~ $1,250 USD ​ REGISTRATION DEADLINE DATE Your trip registration, deposit, and final payment deadline is March 1 , 2023 . Tourism is growing quite rapidly in Israel, and things need to be done earlier than in previous years. Therefore, booking lodging, bus transportation in Israel, etc., needs to be done no later than 3 months before trip departure to ensure availability (booking lodging is even recommended 6 months in advance for best availability). For these reasons, we have set March 1 , 2023 , as the deadline for trip registration for everyone. For those who desire to attend this trip after March 1 , 2023 , we will handle each person on a space availability case basis. Thanks for your understanding. ​ CANCELATIONS & REFUNDS Deposit Refund Paid to Holy Land Site Ministries In the unfortunate case you may need to cancel your trip due to personal reasons on or before the March 1 , 2023, deadline, Holy Land Site Ministries will only be able to refund one-half ($250) of your $500 deposit. ​ Deposit Transfer If you would like to transfer your deposit to another person, you can do so. Just kindly have this person pay you and let us know. ​ Refunds of All Funds Paid to Holy Land Site Ministries In the unfortunate case you may need to cancel your trip due to personal reasons before March 1 , 2023 , Holy Land Site Ministries will only be able to refund one-half of your final payment. ​ If you must cancel your trip due to personal reasons after March 1 , 2023 , Holy Land Site Ministries will be unable to refund any of your final payment due to expenses we will have already incurred and cannot recuperate. ​ Full Payments Transfer If you would like to transfer your $500 deposit or final payment to another person you can do so. Just kindly have this person pay you and let us know. ​ Refunds from Personal Purchases of Airline Tickets, Lodging, etc. Because these purchases will be the responsibility of each person, Holy Land Site Ministries will be unable to refund any of these funds because they were not paid to Holy Land Site Ministries. ​ Refunds if Trip is Canceled Due to Events Out of Our Control, i.e., Covid-19, Other Viruses, etc. Refunds from flights and lodging will be the responsibility of each person as these were booked personally. Funds paid to Holy Land Site Ministries will be cheerfully refunded if Holy Land Site Ministries can recuperate expenses we have incurred. We suggest that you get trip insurance so you are protected for all your expenses, i.e., flights, lodging, Holy Land Site Ministries fees, etc. ​ TRIP PROTECTION INSURANCE If you would like trip protection insurance to protect you, or if the trip is canceled for any reason, many third-party insurance agencies provide travel protection insurance in the case of cancelations due to unforeseen reasons. Travel Protection Agencies (Rated the Highest by ​ Adviser (compares many companies): ​ Allianz Travel Insurance: ​ Travel Guard (AIG): ​ Seven Corners: ​ WHEN TO BOOK AIRFARE & LODGING Please do not book any flights or lodging until you receive tour trip confirmation from Holy Land Site Ministries. HOTEL RESERVATION BOOKING LINKS ​ Kfar Maccabiah Hotel & Suites, 7 Peretz Berenstein Street, Ramat Gan, Tel Aviv Check-in: April 29, Check-out: April 30, One night Hotel Reservation Link: ​ Prima Galil Tiberias Hotel, El Hadif Street 1, Tiberias Check-in: April 30, Check-out: May 4, Four nights Hotel Reservation Link: ​ Prima Park Hotel Jerusalem: 2 Vilnay Street, Jerusalem Check-in: May 4, Check-out: May 13, Nine nights Hotel Reservation Link: ​ Note: For those having the time and resources, arriving a day early will give you a chance to rest up and get better prepared for your experience in Israel. If, for some reason, the hotels are full, just book a hotel of your choice nearby and meet us at the check-in lobby of the main hotel by 7:45 am. Bus departure is scheduled daily at 8:00 am from each hotel. ​ ​ CONTACT INFO: Todd Fink Phone: (541) 603-0881 Email: Website: Anchor 2 Anchor 4 DAILY ITINERARY FRI, APRIL 28 DEPART FOR THE HOLY LAND Please make plans to arrive at Ben Gurion Airport, Tel Aviv, on April 29, 2023. Please arrive by 3:00 pm. This will give you plenty of time to attend our orientation and get-acquainted meeting at 7:00 pm. We'll meet at the main check-in lobby of the Kfar Maccabiah & Suites Hotel and then find a meeting place. ​ Note: For those having the time and resources, arriving a day early will give you a chance to rest up and get better prepared for your experience in Israel. SAT, APRIL 29 TEL AVIV After arriving at the Ben Gurion Airport in Tel Aviv, Israel, you will proceed and go through customs. Please don’t lose your small tourist visa provided to you. Afterward, you can take a taxi to Kfar Maccabiah Hotel & Suites, 7 Peretz Berenstein Street, Ramat Gan, Tel Aviv. Due to customs and obtaining visas, please allow approximately 3 hours from airport arrival to hotel arrival. The hotel is about 15 minutes from the airport, depending on traffic. Orientation and get acquainted meeting 7:00 pm. Please meet in the main hotel lobby. Free time afterward. Lodging at Kfar Maccabiah Hotel & Suites, 7 Peretz Berenstein Street, Ramat Gan, Tel Aviv. One night total. Google Map from Ben Gurion to Kfar Maccabiah Hotel ​ SUN, APRIL 30 TEL AVIV – SEA OF GALILEE AREA Refreshed from a good night's sleep, we’ll visit Old Jaffa (Joppa), the traditional home of Simon the Tanner, the port from which Jonah sailed, and the logs arrived for the construction of the Temple in Jerusalem. We’ll then pass through the fast-growing towns and farms of the Plain of Sharon en route to Caesarea Maritima , where the Holy Spirit came to the Gentiles and the site of major events in the lives of Peter and Paul. We’ll drive through the rolling hills of Galilee to Nazareth , where Jesus grew up, and visit the Church of the Annunciation , where the angel, Gabriel, announced to Mary that she would be the mother of the Messiah. We'll then drive through Cana , where Christ performed His first public miracle. Then it’s on to Tiberias and the Sea of Galilee , which will be our base for the next 4 nights. Free time afterward. Lodging at Prima Galil Tiberias Hotel, El Hadif Street 1, Tiberias. Four nights total. Tour Day 1: G oogle Map Itinerary ​ MON, MAY 1 SEA OF GALILEE AREA This day alone is worth the trip! We are now literally walking in the footsteps of Jesus. We'll start the day at Ginasor , where we'll see an ancient boat ( Beit Yigal Allon Museum) from the time of Jesus. We'll take a most memorable boat ride on the Sea of Galilee in a replica of an ancient wooden boat used in Jesus’ day. We’ll visit the Mount of Beatitudes , the location of the beautiful Sermon on the Mount, where Christ preached his longest and most famous sermon. From the Mount of Beatitudes, we'll walk in the footsteps of Jesus down the hill to Tabgha by the Sea of Galilee. Then on to Capernaum , where Jesus set up His home ministry base and often preached in the ancient synagogue. We will continue our drive around the Sea of Galilee to Kursi , the place where Christ cast out a legion of demons out of a demon-possessed man. We'll end the day at a breathtaking spot overlooking the Sea of Galilee , where we'll be able to see many sites around its shore, one of which is where the Feeding of the 5,000 took place. Free time afterward. Tour Day 2: Google Map Itinerary ​ TUES, MAY 2 SEA OF GALILEE AREA We’ll journey north to Caesarea Philippi, where Peter confessed, “You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God” (Matt. 16:16). We’ll visit Chorazin , one of the cursed towns, which has one of the most preserved synagogues in the Galilee area. We’ll visit Magdala , the hometown of Mary Magdalene, from whom Christ cast out seven demons. We will then wrap up the day at the most likely place Jesus called many of His disciples and the area where Peter was reconciled with Christ after denying Him three times. This will be a natural place where you can dip your feet in the Sea of Galilee and enjoy the water and small waves. Free time afterward. Tour Day 3: Google Map Itinerary WED, MAY 3 SEA OF GALILEE AREA We’ll drive along the Jordan Valley to Beth Shean , a stunning Roman Decapolis city and the place where Saul and his son’s bodies were hanged after defeat in battle. We’ll visit Gideon’s Spring , where Gideon selected his soldiers to do battle against the Midianites. We’ll return to the Sea of Galilee and finish the day on top of Mt. Arbel , the believed place where Christ gave the Great Commission, and which provides a breathtaking view of the Sea of Galilee. Free time afterward. Tour Day 4: Google Map Itinerary ​ THURS, MAY 4 JORDAN VALLEY AREA We’ll drive south along the Jordan Valley, following the footsteps that Jesus and His disciples would have walked, arriving at the Baptismal Site of Jesus, where Jesus was baptized by John. We'll provide an option for those who would like to get baptized to do so. Then to Jericho , the oldest known walled city and the first place Joshua and the Israelites conquered upon entering the Promised Land. We’ll then visit Qumran , where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found in 1947. Then, we'll ascend and enter Jerusalem as pilgrims did since ancient times to fulfill the words of the prophet "I was glad when they said unto me: 'Our feet shall stand within thy Gates, O Jerusalem'" (Psalms 122:1–2). Free time afterward. Lodging at Prima Park Hotel Jerusalem: 2 Vilnay Street, Jerusalem. Nine nights total. Tour Day 5: Google Map Itinerary FRI, MAY 5 DEAD SEA AREA We’ll begin the day with a drive to Masada , a massive fortress rock column that overlooks the Dead Sea (the lowest spot on earth). We'll ascend Masada by cable car to visit the remnants of Herod's Palace, and where in 73 AD, the Zealots made their last stand against the might of Rome. We’ll visit ancient Gomorrah , one of the cities God destroyed by fire and brimstone due to their wickedness. Then, what would a visit to Israel be without taking a dip, or rather a float, in the Dead Sea ? Free time afterward. Tour Day 6: Google Map Itinerary ​ SAT, MAY 6 BETHLEHEM – JUDAH AREA We will visit the magnificent Herodian Fortress to view the Shepherds' Fields and the Fields of Boaz and Ruth. We'll see Bethlehem, see Manger Square, and the Church of the Nativity, the place Jesus was born. We’ll then travel to the Valley of Elah , the place where David slew Goliath. Then on to Beth Shemesh , the place where key events in the life of Samson took place and where the Ark of the Covenant miraculously was returned to the Israelites by the Philistines. Free time afterward. Tour Day 7: Google Map Itinerary ​ SUN, MAY 7 SAMARIA AREA Today we’ll travel north to the ancient Samaria region of the Bible. We visit Shechem , the place Abraham first entered the Promised Land and erected an altar. We’ll see and drink out of Jacob’s Well , the place where Jesus talked with the Samaritan woman. We’ll see where Joseph’s bones were buried at the Tomb of Joseph . We’ll see ancient Shiloh , the place the Tabernacle resided for 369 years and where Hannah prayed for a son (Samuel). Then it’s on to ancient Bethel , where Jacob saw a ladder to heaven, where the tabernacle resided, and where Jeroboam erected a Golden Calf. We'll drive by the site of ancient Ai , the second city Joshua and the Israelites destroyed. Free time afterward. Tour Day 8: Google Map Itinerary MON, MAY 8 JERUSALEM We’ll start the day with a magnificent view of the Old City from the top of the Mt. of Olives and orient ourselves to the layout and places of Jerusalem . We’ll then visit the Chapel of Ascension , the place where Christ ascended back to heaven and where His feet will touch down at His glorious second coming. We'll visit Pater Noster Church , a place Christ taught His disciples how to pray. We’ll take the Palm Sunday Walk to the Garden of Gethsemane and the Church of All Nations . Along the way, we’ll visit Dominus Flevit , the place where Christ wept over Jerusalem. We’ll see Mary’s Tomb and underground caves that were part of Gethsemane . Free time afterward. Tour Day 9: Google Map Itinerary ​ TUES, MAY 9 JERUSALEM Today we will visit the Upper Room , the location of the Last Supper, and place an early church/synagogue was built by early Christians shortly after the time of Christ. Next, we'll see the House of Caiaphas , where Christ was tried before Caiaphas, Peter denied Christ three times, and where Christ was beaten and spent the night in a dungeon . While at the House of Caiaphas, we'll see a model of Jerusalem from around 135 AD . Then we'll have the privilege of visiting the City of David , where everything began in Jerusalem. While in the City of David, we'll see David's Palace , ancient ruins, the remains of Nehemiah's Wall, and King David's Tomb. For those who would like, you can walk through Hezekiah's Water Tunnel , which diverts the water from the Gihon Spring to the Pool of Siloam. For the others, you can walk the Canaanite Dry Tunnel . We'll then all meet and see the Pool of Siloam , where Christ healed a blind man. We’ll then walk part of the Kidron Valley (Valley of Jehoshaphat), where God’s winepress of wrath will be poured out on the gathered nations at Christ's second coming and from where the blood (the height of a horse’s bridle) will flow to the Dead Sea and beyond. Free time afterward. Tour Day 10: Google Map Itinerary ​ WED, MAY 10 JERUSALEM Today, we’ll visit and walk on the Temple Mount , the location where Solomon’s Temple was and the holiest and most battled-over piece of land in the world. We'll then see the Western Wall , the Jew’s most holy site in Israel. We’ll visit the Southern Stairs Area , which was the main entrance to the Temple Mount, a place Christ and His disciples would have often been, and the likely place where those who received Christ at Pentecost were baptized. Next, we'll experience the amazing Western Wall Tunnels Tour , where we'll go underground to see the northern section of the Western Walls. We’ll then walk through part of the Cardo , an original Roman street, and then see the amazing remains of the massive Broad Wall built by King Hezekiah. Free time afterward. Tour Day 11: Google Map Itinerary ​ THURS, MAY 11 JERUSALEM Today, we’ll travel to Hebron , the place where Abraham had many encounters with God and from where King David reigned over Judah for 7 1/2 years. We'll begin by visiting the Oaks of Mamre , a preserved site over the place where Abraham lived for a period of time and had several amazing encounters with God. Just a short distance from the Oaks of Mamre is the place where the patriarchs are buried in the Cave of Machpelah . Close to Machpelah are the ruins of ancient Tel Hebron . We’ll then travel to Beersheba , where Abraham lived and made a covenant with Abimelech. Farewell Dinner at 6:30 pm for those who are able. Free time afterward. Tour Day 12: Google Map Itinerary ​ FRI, MAY 12 NEGEV AREA We’ll begin the day by seeing Pilate’s Palace and Gabbatha (stone pavement and judgment place where Christ was condemned to crucifixion). From there, we'll walk the biblical Via Dolorosa (painful path to the Cross) to Golgotha , which is where the Church of the Holy Sepulchre is today. We'll then visit and explore the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and see why it's the best candidate for Golgotha. Then we'll walk to the Lions' Gate and see the famous Eastern Gate and Eastern Wall , where we'll see ancient stones dating back to the time of Christ and see the evidence of the original Temple Mount and its expansions over the years. Then we'll see the Church of St. Anne, where the Pool of Bethesda is located, the place Jesus healed a sick man after he had waited 38 long years. We’ll then walk the traditional path of the Via Dolorosa and see the Stations of the Cross . We'll end our day with a look at the rock formation at the Garden Tomb, which some believe is Golgotha. Free time afterward. Tour Day 13: Google Map Itinerary ​ SAT, MAY 13 ISRAEL - HOME Unless you plan on continuing your stay in Israel, you’ll transfer to the airport and arrive home with wonderful memories of a visit to the Land of the Bible! ​ Take into account that checkout from the hotel is 11:00 am. If you fly early on the 4th, you might need to book another night at the hotel. ​ The hotel in Jerusalem provides several options for transportation to the airport: (1) You can take a 12-passenger shuttle service directly to the airport for around $25.00 USD (2) you can take a taxi which costs around $100 for up to 4 people. Please arrange this with the hotel lobby a couple of days in advance. Both the shuttle and taxis take about an hour to reach the airport and run every day of the week, even on Shabbat (Saturday), the Sabbath. Google Map from Prima Park Hotel to Ben Gurion Airport SUN, MAY 14 ARRIVE HOME Return home filled with an overflowing heart knowing that you walked in the footsteps of Christ and experienced the actual places where many of the events in the Bible took place. ​ ​ Anchor 3

  • Nazareth, Israel: Mt. Precipice, Jesus Hometown, Christ Rejected, Attempt to Throw Jesus off Cliff |

    Nazareth: Mount Precipice Nazareth: Mount Precipice Location 1. Nazareth is in the northern part of Israel in the lower Galilee area. 2. It’s about 15 miles (24 km.) southwest of the Sea of Galilee, about 3.5 miles (5.6 km.) southwest of Cana, and about 23 miles (37 km.) inland from the Mediterranean Sea. Historical Background 1. Nazareth had an estimated population of around 300 during the time of Christ. 2. It’s a famous town because this is where the Angel Gabriel announced the miraculous virgin birth to Mary. 3. Nazareth is also the place where Jesus grew up. 4. It was a small farming town where everyone knew each other. 5. For some reason, Nazareth had a bad reputation (John 1:43-46). Places of Interest 1. Nazareth ​ 2. Hometown of Jesus ​ 3. Mt. Precipice ​ 4. Church of the Annunciation (Basilica of the Annunciation) ​ 5. Mary’s Well ​ 6. Greek Catholic Church ​ 7. Greek Orthodox Church of the Annunciation ​ 8. St. Joseph’s Church ​ 9. Mensa Christi Church ​ 10. Greek Catholic Church ​ 11. Synagogue Church Now, this synagogue where Jesus preached here in Nazareth still exists to this day. According to Christian tradition, the church is built on the ruins of the ancient Nazareth synagogue where Jesus studied, prayed, and then preached at in His visit here when they attempted to throw Him off the cliff. This synagogue is simply named today, “the Synagogue Church.” Ancient tradition maintains that this Synagogue Church stands atop the synagogue where Jesus worshipped as a young man. In fact, in A.D. 570, the anonymous northern Italian “Pilgrim of Piacenza” — the last western Christian writer to visit Palestine before the Muslim conquest that occurred less than a century later — claimed to have seen not only the ancient synagogue itself but the original Scriptures from which Jesus had read, as well as the bench on which Jesus used to sit as a young man. During Byzantine times, Christian believers started attending this place, and in Medieval times the synagogue was turned into a church. The church was later destroyed, but a stone structure marking the location of the first-century synagogue is still intact. Its floor is 6 feet lower than street level, and its roof is arched, a typical element in medieval architecture. A marble pillar next to its entrance is dated to the Roman period. This column is the only possible genuine remnant of the ancient synagogue. A raised platform in its northern end holds an altar. By local tradition, this is where Jesus read from Isaiah to the local congregation. The current “Synagogue Church” is a 12th-century Crusader structure located in the area of Nazareth’s medieval market, just a few minutes’ walk from the Church of the Annunciation and directly adjacent to the Greek Catholic Church of the Annunciation. The Synagogue Church is visited by just a fraction of those coming to see the Church of the Annunciation, perhaps because of its hidden location. The site is maintained by the Melkite Greek Catholics, who added an adjacent modern church which was completed in 1887. Nazareth In the Bible ​ 1. Nazareth was the home of Joseph and Mary and the place where the angel Gabriel was sent to announce to the Virgin Mary that she would be the mother of Christ the Messiah. There has been a church built here to commemorate this announcement called, “The Church of the Annunciation.” Luke 1:26-38 says, “In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin's name was Mary. And he came to her and said, "Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!" But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. And the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end." And Mary said to the angel, "How will this be, since I am a virgin?" And the angel answered her, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy--the Son of God. And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. For nothing will be impossible with God." And Mary said, "Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word." And the angel departed from her.” 2. After living in Egypt for some time after Christ’s birth, His parents returned to Nazareth where Jesus grew up. Matt. 2:19-23: “But when Herod died, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt, saying, "Rise, take the child and his mother and go to the land of Israel, for those who sought the child's life are dead." And he rose and took the child and his mother and went to the land of Israel. But when he heard that Archelaus was reigning over Judea in place of his father Herod, he was afraid to go there, and being warned in a dream he withdrew to the district of Galilee. And he went and lived in a city called Nazareth, that what was spoken by the prophets might be fulfilled: "He shall be called a Nazarene." 3. Jesus lived Nazareth until He started His earthly ministry at the age of 30. From Nazareth, Christ relocated and set up His ministry home base in Capernaum. Matthew 4:13-17: “And leaving Nazareth he went and lived in Capernaum by the sea, in the territory of Zebulun and Naphtali, so that what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah might be fulfilled: "The land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, the way of the sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles-- the people dwelling in darkness have seen a great light, and for those dwelling in the region and shadow of death, on them a light has dawned." From that time Jesus began to preach, saying, "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand." 4. Jesus was rejected by His own townspeople at Nazareth and was unable to perform many miracles there due to their lack of faith in Him. Luke 4:14-27 - And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit to Galilee, and a report about him went out through all the surrounding country. And he taught in their synagogues, being glorified by all. And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up. And as was his custom, he went to the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and he stood up to read. And the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where it was written, "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor." And he rolled up the scroll and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. And he began to say to them, "Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing." And all spoke well of him and marveled at the gracious words that were coming from his mouth. And they said, "Is not this Joseph's son?" And he said to them, "Doubtless you will quote to me this proverb, 'Physician, heal yourself.' What we have heard you did at Capernaum, do here in your hometown as well." And he said, "Truly, I say to you, no prophet is acceptable in his hometown. But in truth, I tell you, there were many widows in Israel in the days of Elijah, when the heavens were shut up three years and six months, and a great famine came over all the land, and Elijah was sent to none of them but only to Zarephath, in the land of Sidon, to a woman who was a widow. And there were many lepers in Israel in the time of the prophet Elisha, and none of them was cleansed, but only Naaman the Syrian." 5. Those who knew Christ the best rejected Him and attempted to throw Him off a cliff close-by to their town. Today, this place is called, Mt. Precipice, named after this event. Luke 4:28-30: “When they heard these things, all in the synagogue were filled with wrath. And they rose up and drove him out of the town and brought him to the brow of the hill on which their town was built, so that they could throw him down the cliff. But passing through their midst, he went away. Faith Lesson ​ 1. Am I oftentimes misunderstood by my family and friends like Christ was? ​ 2. I should love my family and friends, but if they don’t understand my commitment to Christ, I shouldn’t allow them to negatively affect my relationship with Christ and be discouraged. Jesus said we must love Him more than our closest relationships. 3. Do I love Christ more than my family and friends? In Matt. 10:37 Christ said, “Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.”

  • Beth Shemesh, Israel: Return of the Ark by the Philistines, Samson, Samuel, Sorek Valley, Zorah |

    Beth-Shemesh Photo Gallery Places of Interest Beth-Shemesh ​ Location 1. Beth-Shemesh lies 13 miles (21 km.) west of Jerusalem and 20 miles (32 km.) east of the Mediterranean Sea. It’s on Hwy. 38, about 5.5 miles (8 km.) south of Hwy. 1. 2. Beth-Shemesh was the most important city in the Sorek Valley as it was a guard-city to both east-west and north-south traffic through the region. 3. It was a border city between Judah and Dan that was given to the Levites. 4. Just across the valley (north) is the town of Zorah, where Samson lived. Some ruins and his tomb can be seen today. 5. Down the valley (west) a short distance was the town of Timnah, the hometown of Samson’s first wife, and the area where his girlfriend Delilah lived. 6. Beth-Shemesh means “House of the Sun” and probably got its name from sun worship by the Canaanites. 7. Beth-Shemesh is most known as the place where the Ark of the Covenant arrived when the Philistines returned it in 1 Samuel 6. Historical Background 1. Beth Shemesh was a large thriving city belonging to the Canaanites when the Israelites arrived in about 1400 BC. 2. The Philistines were part of the Canaanite people group who lived in the land (Gen. 21:34). They possessed iron and were the high-tech people of the day. 3. At the time of Judges and 1 Samuel (1050 AD), the Philistines had a stronghold in the coastal plain area. 4. As the Philistines gained territory, they moved inland. Beth Shemesh and the cities in the Sorek Valley were affected and became border towns between the Philistines and the Israelites. 5. Samson, who lived across from Beth Shemesh in Zorah, engaged in battle with the Philistines to liberate the area from their grasp and return it to the Israelites. 6. The Philistines worshipped the false god, Dagon, who was supposedly the father of Baalsabul, or Baal. He was a fish god of fertility and was represented as a half-man, half-fish creature. Places of Interest ​ 1. Tel Beth-Shemesh 5th century AD Byzantine Monastery Underground Water Reservoir Northern Double Chambered Gate Southern Gate Mosque Ruins Tombs Large rock where the Israelites likely sacrificed the oxen who pulled the cart after receiving the Ark of the Covenant from the Philistines. 2. Sorek Valley ​ 3. Nahal Sorek Stream 4. Zorah ​ Samson's Tomb 5. Tel Timnah 6. Modern Beth-Shemesh Beth-Shemesh in the Bible 1. God gave the Israelites over to the Philistines because they had done evil in His sight. Judges 13:1: And the people of Israel again did what was evil in the sight of the LORD, so the LORD gave them into the hand of the Philistines for forty years. 2. God raised up Samson to begin the deliverance of the area from the hand of the Philistines (Judges 13–16). 3. The Ark of the Covenant was captured in a battle against the Philistines. This was due to judgment against the priest Eli and his two sons, Hophni and Phinehas, who all died in battle because of their wickedness (1 Sam. 4). 4. The Philistines believed they were victorious in battle because their god, Dagon, was stronger than the true God of the Israelites. As a result, the Philistines took the Ark to the temple of their god, Dagon, to honor him for the victory. ​ 5. However, God made the false god, Dagon, fall down in worship before the Ark. 1 Samuel 5:1–4: When the Philistines captured the ark of God, they brought it from Ebenezer to Ashdod. 2 Then the Philistines took the ark of God and brought it into the house of Dagon and set it up beside Dagon. 3 And when the people of Ashdod rose early the next day, behold, Dagon had fallen face downward on the ground before the ark of the LORD. So they took Dagon and put him back in his place. 4 But when they rose early on the next morning, behold, Dagon had fallen face downward on the ground before the ark of the LORD, and the head of Dagon and both his hands were lying cut off on the threshold. Only the trunk of Dagon was left to him. 6. God sent the Philistines many sicknesses as a result of possessing the Ark. So they moved it from town to town, thinking their diseases were just coincidental. 7. Finally, they realized that it was God who was behind their diseases and decided to send the Ark of the Covenant back to the Israelites. 8. The Philistines prepare to return the Ark to the Israelites in Beth-Shemesh. 1 Samuel 6:1–9: The ark of the LORD was in the country of the Philistines seven months . 2 And the Philistines called for the priests and the diviners and said, “What shall we do with the ark of the LORD? Tell us with what we shall send it to its place.” 3 They said, “If you send away the ark of the God of Israel, do not send it empty, but by all means return him a guilt offering. Then you will be healed, and it will be known to you why his hand does not turn away from you.” 4 And they said, “What is the guilt offering that we shall return to him?” They answered, “Five golden tumors and five golden mice, according to the number of the lords of the Philistines, for the same plague was on all of you and on your lords. 5 So you must make images of your tumors and images of your mice that ravage the land, and give glory to the God of Israel. Perhaps he will lighten his hand from off you and your gods and your land. 6 Why should you harden your hearts as the Egyptians and Pharaoh hardened their hearts? After he had dealt severely with them, did they not send the people away, and they departed? 7 Now then, take and prepare a new cart and two milk cows on which there has never come a yoke, and yoke the cows to the cart, but take their calves home, away from them. 8 And take the ark of the LORD and place it on the cart and put in a box at its side the figures of gold, which you are returning to him as a guilt offering. Then send it off and let it go its way 9 and watch. If it goes up on the way to its own land, to Beth-Shemesh , then it is he who has done us this great harm, but if not, then we shall know that it is not his hand that struck us; it happened to us by coincidence.” 9. The Ark miraculously arrives at Beth-Shemesh. 1 Samuel 6:10–13: The men did so and took two milk cows and yoked them to the cart and shut up their calves at home. 11 And they put the ark of the LORD on the cart and the box with the golden mice and the images of their tumors. 12 And the cows went straight in the direction of Beth-Shemesh along one highway, lowing as they went. They turned neither to the right nor to the left, and the lords of the Philistines went after them as far as the border of Beth-Shemesh . 13 Now the people of Beth-Shemesh were reaping their wheat harvest in the valley. And when they lifted up their eyes and saw the ark, they rejoiced to see it. 10. The Israelites offer a burnt offering to the Lord in gratitude for receiving the Ark. 1 Samuel 6:14–16: The cart came into the field of Joshua of Beth-Shemesh and stopped there. A great stone was there. And they split up the wood of the cart and offered the cows as a burnt offering to the LORD. 15 And the Levites took down the ark of the LORD and the box that was beside it, in which were the golden figures, and set them upon the great stone. And the men of Beth-Shemesh offered burnt offerings and sacrificed sacrifices on that day to the LORD. 16 And when the five lords of the Philistines saw it, they returned that day to Ekron. ​ 11. The Beth-Shemesh area is where Philip the Evangelist witnessed to the Ethiopian Eunuch. Acts 8:26–31: Now an angel of the Lord said to Philip, “Rise and go toward the south to the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza .” This is a desert place. 27 And he rose and went. And there was an Ethiopian, a eunuch, a court official of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, who was in charge of all her treasure. He had come to Jerusalem to worship 28 and was returning, seated in his chariot, and he was reading the prophet, Isaiah. 29 And the Spirit said to Philip, “Go over and join this chariot.” 30 So Philip ran to him and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet and asked, “Do you understand what you are reading?” 31 And he said, “How can I, unless someone guides me?” And he invited Philip to come up and sit with him. Faith Lesson from Beth-Shemesh 1. The Israelites adopted the sinful culture of those around them and did evil in the sight of the Lord. Am I careful not to adopt the sinful lifestyles and beliefs of the sinful culture in which I live? 2. Even though the Israelites sinned and failed to be a faithful witness to the surrounding nations, God protected His glory and showed Himself to them as the true and living God. Am I a faithful witness to my culture in living out God’s truth and reflecting His glory? 3. Do I use the miracles God has done in my life as a tool to witness and teach others who God is? ​ 4. Like Philip, am I obedient in listening to God’s voice and sharing the gospel when He prompts me? ​

  • Mount of Olives Overview |

    Mount of Olives Photo Gallery Places of Interest Mount of Olives Location The Mount of Olives is located just opposite the Temple Mount on the east side of Old City Jerusalem. Historical Background 1. The Mount of Olives has played a significant role in the Bible. 2. It is from where Christ ascended back to heaven. 3. It is where Christ, along with all believers, will return to at Christ’s second coming. Places of Interest 1. Kidron Valley (Valley of Jehoshaphat) 2. Garden of Gethsemane 3. Mary’s Tomb (mother of Jesus) 4. Church of Mary Magdalene 5. Church of Dominus Flevit (where Christ wept over Jerusalem) 6. Triumphal Entry Path 7. Bethphage (beginning place of the Triumphal Entry on the backside of the Mount of Olives) 8. Tomb of Lazarus (backside of the Mount of Olives) 9. 3,000-year-old cemetery with 150,000 Gravesites 10. Chapel of the Ascension (where Christ ascended to heaven and will return to at His second coming) 11. Pater Noster Church (where Christ taught the Lord’s Prayer) 12. Absalom’s Monument 13. Tomb of the Prophets (Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi) ​ Mount of Olives in the Bible 1. When King David’s son, Absalom, tried to take over the kingship, David ascended the Mount of Olives as he fled Jerusalem. 2 Samuel 15:30: But David went up the ascent of the Mount of Olives, weeping as he went, barefoot and with his head covered. And all the people who were with him covered their heads, and they went up, weeping as they went. 2. It’s where Jesus regularly stayed when He ministered in Jerusalem. Luke 21:37: And every day he was teaching in the temple, but at night he went out and lodged on the mount called Olivet. 3. It’s the believed place where Christ taught His disciples to pray after visiting Mary and Martha’s home in Bethany (Pater Noster Church). Luke 11:1: One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.” 4. On the backside of the Mount of Olives (at Bethany), Christ raised Lazarus from the dead. John 11:32–36: Now when Mary came to where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet, saying to him, "Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” 33 When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in his spirit and greatly troubled. 34 And he said, "Where have you laid him?" They said to him, "Lord, come and see." 35 Jesus wept. 36 So the Jews said, "See how he loved him!" 5. Jesus descended the Mount of Olives during His Triumphal Entry (Triumphal Entry Path). Luke 19:35–38: And they brought it [colt of a donkey] to Jesus, and throwing their cloaks on the colt, they set Jesus on it. 36 And as he rode along, they spread their cloaks on the road. 37 As he was drawing near—already on the way down the Mount of Olives—the whole multitude of his disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen, 38 saying, "Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!" 6. Christ wept over Jerusalem from the Mount of Olives (Church of Dominus Flevit). Luke 19:41–44: And when he drew near and saw the city, he wept over it, 42 saying, “Would that you, even you, had known on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes. 43 For the days will come upon you, when your enemies will set up a barricade around you and surround you and hem you in on every side 44 and tear you down to the ground, you and your children within you. And they will not leave one stone upon another in you, because you did not know the time of your visitation. 7. The Garden of Gethsemane, located at the base of the Mount of Olives, is where the suffering of Christ began. Christ’s sweat became like drops of blood. Luke 22:39–44: And he came out and went, as was his custom, to the Mount of Olives, and the disciples followed him. 40 And when he came to the place, he said to them, "Pray that you may not enter into temptation." 41 And he withdrew from them about a stone's throw, and knelt down and prayed, 42 saying, "Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done." 43 And there appeared to him an angel from heaven, strengthening him. 44 And being in an agony, he prayed more earnestly; and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground. Peter cut off the ear of the High Priest’s guard. Christ was arrested, and the disciples fled. 8. Christ’s return and the destruction of Jerusalem were foretold from the Mount of Olives. Matthew 24:3: As he sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately, saying, "Tell us, when will these things be, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the close of the age?" 9. On the top of the Mount of Olives is where Christ ascended back to heaven (Chapel of the Ascension). Acts 1:9–11: And when he had said these things, as they were looking on, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. 10 And while they were gazing into heaven as he went, behold, two men stood by them in white robes, 11 and said, "Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven." 10. On top of the Mount of Olives is where Christ will return at the end of the Tribulation Period. Matthew 24:29–31: Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. 30 Then will appear in heaven the sign of the Son of Man, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 31 And he will send out his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other. Zechariah 14:4: On that day his feet shall stand on the Mount of Olives that lies before Jerusalem on the east, and the Mount of Olives shall be split in two from east to west by a very wide valley, so that one half of the Mount shall move northward, and the other half southward. 11. At the base of the Mount of Olives lies the Kidron Valley (Valley of Jehoshaphat) where Christ will judge unbelievers at the end of the Tribulation Period. Joel 3:2: I will gather all the nations and bring them down to the Valley of Jehoshaphat. And I will enter into judgment with them there, on behalf of my people and my heritage Israel, because they have scattered them among the nations and have divided up my land. Revelation 14:19–20: So the angel swung his sickle across the earth and gathered the grape harvest of the earth and threw it into the great winepress of the wrath of God. 20 And the winepress was trodden outside the city, and blood flowed from the winepress, as high as a horse's bridle, for 1,600 stadia [200 miles, or 300 kilometers]. Faith Lesson from the Mount of Olives 1. Christ’s return on the Mount of Olives is where everything culminates and flips. Righteousness becomes dominant and evil bows its knees. 2. We will return with Christ in power and great glory. What hope believers have in Christ. 3. We will reign with Christ for 1,000 years from Jerusalem during Christ’s Millennial Reign. 4. Because of our hope as believers, are we motivated to serve Christ and live for Him? ​

  • Caesarea Maritima Overview: Holy Spirit Given to Gentiles, Apostle Paul Prisoned, Appeals to Caesar |

    Caesarea Maritima Overview Photo Gallery Places of Interest Caesarea Maritima Overview Introduction ​ Welcome to Caesarea Maritima. Many events from the Bible took place here. Here are some of the highlights. ​ After the Apostle Paul received Christ, he was sent to Tarsus from this seaport. Cornelius, the first Gentile to receive the Holy Spirit, lived here. Caesarea was the place where the Holy Spirit was given to the Gentiles. King Herod Agrippa the 1st, the son of Herod the Great, met his death in Caesarea. Philip the Evangelist lived in Caesarea. The Apostle Paul sailed to and from Caesarea on his missionary travels. The Apostle Paul stood trial here for his faith. The Apostle Paul was imprisoned here for 2 years because of his faith. It's possible that some of the Prison Epistles found in the New Testament were written right here. After spending 2 years of imprisonment in Caesarea, the Apostle Paul sailed from Caesarea to Rome, where he stood trial for his faith. It was one of the key places where the gospel would be taken to the whole world. Many Christians would be martyred here at the Hippodrome for their refusal to deny Christ. ​ Location Caesarea is located on the beautiful Mediterranean Sea, about 35 miles (56 km.) north of Joppa. Historical Background 1. Caesarea was built by Herod the Great about 25 to 13 BC as the port city called “Caesarea Maritime.” It was built on the site of a Phoenician and Greek trade post known as Straton's Tower. The Phoenicians were maritime merchants of the ancient world. 2. It was named after the Roman Emperor, Augustus Caesar. Augustus Caesar was the first Roman Emperor to declare himself a god and demand to be worshiped. A temple was built here to honor and worship Caesar Augustus as a god. ​ Interestingly, Christ was born in this time period and was viewed as a competing God. 3. King Herod the Great was the one who had all the children 2 years and younger slaughtered in Bethlehem in his attempt to kill Christ. He was a jealous king who feared losing his power and control. 4. King Herod built Caesarea out of nothing and was a master builder. Some of his major building projects included: This seaport of Caesarea An enlarged Temple Mount platform and temple in Jerusalem. Masada The Herodian by Bethlehem Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron Palace in Jericho 5. He was known for his building ventures, and no one equaled him in this respect. 6. Caesarea was the largest seaport in the Roman Empire during the time of Herod. 7. Caesarea was the capital of Israel during the time of Christ and the whole Roman occupation of Israel. ​ 8. Herod's architects were the best in the world, even better than those of the Roman Empire. ​ 9. During the Byzantine period, Caesarea became an important Christian center. During this period, the Byzantines built a church over the ruins of the temple built to worship Augustus Caesar. ​ 10. The remains of a 5th-century synagogue found on the seashore north of the harbor have also been discovered. The rectangular building faces south towards Jerusalem. Architectural details were found in its ruins, including capitals with a carved menorah, a column inscribed with the name Shalom, and parts of a Hebrew inscription listing the twenty-four priestly courses in the Temple in Jerusalem. 11. The Church Father Origen founded a Christian academy in the city, which included a library of 30,000 manuscripts. At the beginning of the 4th century, the theologian Eusebius, who served as Bishop of Caesarea, composed here his monumental Historia Ecclesiastica on the beginnings of Christianity and the Onomasticon, a comprehensive geographical-historical study of the Holy Land. Places of Interest (Please See Maps Above) 1. Crusader Fortress Entrance 2. Crusader Fortress 3. Temple to Caesar Augustus 4. Byzantine Church Built Over the Temple to Augustus Caesar 5. 5th Century Synagogue 6. Caesarea Harbor 7. Caesarea Historic Port 8. Governor's Palace 9. Mosaic Hall 10. Hippodrome Many Christians would be martyred here for their refusal to deny Christ. Wild animals would be let out of the gates into the arena and tear the Christians to shreds. It was a brutal form of entertainment at this time in history. 11. Roman Toilet 12. Submerged Garden Castle 13. Paul Appeals to Caesar 14 . Pontius Pilate Stone 15 . Promontory Palace 16 . Caesarea Columns 17 . Roman Theater Caesarea in the Bible 1. After the Apostle Paul received Christ, he was sent to Tarsus from this seaport. Acts 9:30: And when the brothers learned this, they brought him down to Caesarea and sent him off to Tarsus. 2. Cornelius, the first Gentile to receive the Holy Spirit, lived here. Acts 10:1–8: At Caesarea , there was a man named Cornelius, a centurion of what was known as the Italian Cohort, 2 a devout man who feared God with all his household, gave alms generously to the people, and prayed continually to God. 3 About the ninth hour of the day he saw clearly in a vision an angel of God come in and say to him, “Cornelius.” 4 And he stared at him in terror and said, “What is it, Lord?” And he said to him, “Your prayers and your alms have ascended as a memorial before God. 5 And now send men to Joppa and bring one Simon who is called Peter. 6 He is lodging with one Simon, a tanner, whose house is by the sea.” 7 When the angel who spoke to him had departed, he called two of his servants and a devout soldier from among those who attended him, 8 and having related everything to them, he sent them to Joppa. 3. Caesarea was the place where the Holy Spirit was given to the Gentiles. Acts 10:44–48: While Peter was still saying these things, the Holy Spirit fell on all who heard the word. 45 And the believers from among the circumcised who had come with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit was poured out even on the Gentiles. 46 For they were hearing them speaking in tongues and extolling God. Then Peter declared, 47 “Can anyone withhold water for baptizing these people, who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?” 48 And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they asked him to remain for some days. 4. King Herod Agrippa the 1st, the son of Herod the Great, met his death in Caesarea. Acts 12:21–24: On an appointed day Herod put on his royal robes, took his seat upon the throne, and delivered an oration to them. 22 And the people were shouting, "The voice of a god, and not of a man!" 23 Immediately an angel of the Lord struck him down, because he did not give God the glory, and he was eaten by worms and breathed his last. 24 But the word of God increased and multiplied. ​ 5. Philip the Evangelist lived in Caesarea. Acts 21:8: On the next day we departed and came to Caesarea, and we entered the house of Philip the evangelist, who was one of the seven, and stayed with him. 6. The Apostle Paul sailed to and from Caesarea on his missionary travels. Acts 21:7–8: When we had finished the voyage from Tyre, we arrived at Ptolemais, and we greeted the brothers and stayed with them for one day. 8 On the next day, we departed and came to Caesarea , and we entered the house of Philip the evangelist, who was one of the seven, and stayed with him. 7. The Apostle Paul stood trial here for his faith. Acts 23:33–35: When they had come to Caesarea and delivered the letter to the governor, they presented Paul also before him. 34 On reading the letter, he asked what province he was from. And when he learned that he was from Cilicia, 35 he said, "I will give you a hearing when your accusers arrive." And he commanded him to be guarded in Herod's Praetorium. 8. The Apostle Paul was imprisoned here for 2 years because of his faith. Acts 24:27: When two years had elapsed, Felix was succeeded by Porcius Festus. And desiring to do the Jews a favor, Felix left Paul in prison. ​ It’s possible that Paul wrote some of the Prison Epistles in Caesarea during the 2 years he spent here in prison. 9. After spending 2 years of imprisonment in Caesarea, the Apostle Paul sailed from Caesarea to Rome, where he stood trial for his faith. Acts 25:8, 11: Paul argued in his defense, "Neither against the law of the Jews, nor against the temple, nor against Caesar have I committed any offense. Paul then declares, in verse 11 “I appeal to Caesar.” ​ 10. It was one of the key places from which the gospel would be taken to the whole world. Acts 1:8: But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and Samaria, and as far as the remotest part of the earth. ​ Faith Lesson from Caesarea 1. The Holy Spirit was given to the Gentiles here. This shows that God loves all people from all races and backgrounds and wants them to be saved. 2. Paul spent 2 years in prison here because of his faithfulness to Christ. It’s possible he wrote some of the Prison Letters while here. We, too, should be willing to suffer like Paul for the gospel's advancement. 3. God opposes the proud and caused King Herod Agrippa the 1st, the son of Herod the Great, to meet his death here because of his arrogance. We should be certain we always give God the glory for what He does through us and avoid pride in our lives. ​ 4. It's very likely that early Christians were martyred in the hippodrome here for their faith. What price are we willing to pay for our faith in Christ?

  • Jordan River Crossing into Promised Land, Baptismal Site of Jesus, Qsar al Yahud |

    Jordan River Crossing into the Promised Land Photo Gallery Places of Interest Jordan River: Crossing into the Promised Land ​ Location 1. The crossing place where the Israelites entered the Promised Land is just opposite Jericho. 2. It’s amazing that it’s in the same area where John the Baptist baptized many and where John baptized Jesus. 3. Today, it’s known as Qasr el Yahud (Kasser Al Yahud, Qaser, the Baptismal Site of Jesus. 4. It’s about 2 miles (3.3 km.) east of Hwy. 90, opposite Jericho. Historical Background 1. The nation of Israel spent 430 years in Egypt. Four hundred of these years they were slaves (Gen. 15:13), and thirty years they enjoyed peace during the time Joseph was alive. 2. God supernaturally delivered the Israelites out of the hands of the Egyptians through Moses. 3. After the Exodus, they crossed the Red Sea on dry ground. 4. They spent a year at Mount Sinai receiving the Law and then headed to Kadesh Barnea to enter the Promised Land. 5. After the 12 spies returned from scouting out the land, 10 spies convinced the people that the inhabitants of the land were too strong for them to conquer and they should return to Egypt (Num. 13:25–33). 6. Because of their unbelief and disobedience, they were banned from entering the Promised Land and ordered to wander in the desert 40 years until every person 20 years old, and older died (Num. 14:20–25). 7. During the 40 years of wandering in the desert, entering the Promised Land became a deep yearning within the souls of the new generation. Day after day they dreamt about a new life in the Promised Land, which would bring an end to their seemingly vain wandering in the desert eating Manna day after day. 8. After 40 long years, they were poised to enter the Promised Land, and their hearts were overflowing with enthusiasm and expectation as the time had finally arrived. 9. The word “Hebrew” means to cross over. Abraham crossed over from false gods to the one and only true God. He crossed over physically by leaving his homeland and coming to the Promised Land. The Israelites were delivered by God from the Egyptians as they crossed through the Red Sea, and then crossed through the Jordan River into the Promised Land. All these acts are pictures of deliverance and salvation. We also cross over from death to life through Christ. Places of Interest 1. Crossing site of the Israelites into the Promised Land. 2. Baptismal Site of Jesus: The believed place where Jesus was baptized and where many are baptized today. 3. Adam: The place where the waters of the Jordan backed up to when the Israelites crossed the river (20 miles, 32 km., above the crossing site). 4. Shittim 5. Camp Gilgal 6. Jericho ​ 7. Church of John the Baptist 8. Elijah's Hill 9. Cave of John the Baptist 10. Bethany Beyond the Jordan Crossing the Jordan River in the Bible 1. Before entering the Promised Land, the Israelites camped on the east side of the Jordan River, opposite Jericho. Joshua 3:1: Then Joshua rose early in the morning, and they set out from Shittim . And they came to the Jordan , he and all the people of Israel, and lodged there before they passed over. 2. The Israelites crossed the Jordan River on dry ground as God miraculously parted the waters. Joshua 3:14–17: So when the people set out from their tents to pass over the Jordan with the priests bearing the ark of the covenant before the people, 15 and as soon as those bearing the ark had come as far as the Jordan , and the feet of the priests bearing the ark were dipped in the brink of the water (now the Jordan overflows all its banks throughout the time of harvest ), 16 the waters coming down from above stood and rose up in a heap very far away, at Adam [20 miles, 32 km. north], the city that is beside Zarethan, and those flowing down toward the Sea of the Arabah, the Salt Sea [Dead Sea], were completely cut off. And the people passed over opposite Jericho. 17 Now the priests bearing the ark of the covenant of the Lord stood firmly on dry ground in the midst of the Jordan , and all Israel was passing over on dry ground until all the nation finished passing over the Jordan . ​ Using the geographical layout of the land from Adam to the crossing of the Jordan site, the body of water that would have accumulated would have been 20 miles (32 km.) long, 2 miles (3.2 km.) wide, and around 120 ft. (37 m.) high. 3. God ordered that 12 stones be taken out of the Jordan River for a monument. Joshua 4:1–7: When all the nation had finished passing over the Jordan , the Lord said to Joshua, 2 “Take twelve men from the people, from each tribe a man, 3 and command them, saying, ‘Take twelve stones from here out of the midst of the Jordan, from the very place where the priests' feet stood firmly, and bring them over with you and lay them down in the place where you lodge tonight [Gilgal].’” 4 Then Joshua called the twelve men from the people of Israel, whom he had appointed, a man from each tribe. 5 And Joshua said to them, “Pass on before the ark of the Lord your God into the midst of the Jordan , and take up each of you a stone upon his shoulder, according to the number of the tribes of the people of Israel, 6 that this may be a sign among you. When your children ask in time to come, ‘What do those stones mean to you?’ 7 then you shall tell them that the waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord. When it passed over the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. So these stones shall be to the people of Israel a memorial forever.” It appears that the 12-Stone Monument was later moved to the permanent Gilgal located about 7 miles north of Camp Gilgal. For more, please see Gilgal. 4. Joshua also erected a monument in the middle of the Jordan River. Joshua 4:9–10: And Joshua set up twelve stones in the midst of the Jordan , in the place where the feet of the priests bearing the ark of the covenant had stood; and they are there to this day. 10 For the priests bearing the ark stood in the midst of the Jordan until everything was finished that the Lord commanded Joshua to tell the people, according to all that Moses had commanded Joshua. 5. After crossing the river, the water flowed again, and the Israelites arrived at Camp Gilgal. Joshua 4:15–19: And the Lord said to Joshua, 16 “Command the priests bearing the ark of the testimony to come up out of the Jordan.” 17 So Joshua commanded the priests, “Come up out of the Jordan.” 18 And when the priests bearing the ark of the covenant of the Lord came up from the midst of the Jordan , and the soles of the priests' feet were lifted up on dry ground, the waters of the Jordan returned to their place and overflowed all its banks , as before. 19 The people came up out of the Jordan on the tenth day of the first month, and they encamped at Gilgal on the east border of Jericho. 6. Joshua set up 12 stones as a monument of remembrance. Joshua 4:20–24: And those twelve stones, which they took out of the Jordan , Joshua set up at Gilgal. 21 And he said to the people of Israel, “When your children ask their fathers in times to come, ‘What do these stones mean?’ 22 then you shall let your children know, ‘Israel passed over this Jordan on dry ground.’ 23 For the Lord your God dried up the waters of the Jordan for you until you passed over, as the Lord your God did to the Red Sea , which he dried up for us until we passed over, 24 so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the hand of the Lord is mighty, that you may fear the Lord your God forever.” Faith Lesson from Crossing the Jordan River 1. Entering the Promised Land was a long-awaited dream for the new generation of Israelites after wandering in the desert for 40 years. It was also the fulfillment of the Abrahamic Covenant of promise, one of the foundational covenants in the Bible. Is there some hope and dream you have that seems like it will never happen? Do you also really believe that God will fulfill His promise of heaven and that one day you’ll actually be there? And are you living in such a way that shows this? 2. Crossing into the Promised Land is also a picture of living in victory. Unfortunately, many Christians today choose to live in the wilderness in defeat and disobedience. Are you living in obedience and victory or living in the wilderness? 3. The crossing of the Jordan was a much bigger miracle than we think as the river was at flood stage, overflowing its banks. As mentioned, the body of water that would have accumulated would have been 20 miles (32 km.) long, 2 miles (3.2 km.) wide, and around 120 ft. (37 m.) high. This was a massive body and wall of water the 3 million or more Israelites would have witnessed as they walked alongside it for about 2 miles (3.2 km.). 4. The miracle was similar to the crossing of the Red Sea after the Israelite’s Exodus from Egypt. God repeated this miracle to reveal His glory and faithfulness. 5. The waters of the Jordan stopped flowing the moment the priests’ stepped into the water. God required the priests to take a step of faith, and then He acted. In the same way, God often asks us to take a step of faith before He moves. What step of faith do we need to take in our lives today? 6. God ordered Joshua to set up a memorial after crossing the Jordan. Do we have memorials in our minds as reminders of the miracles God has done for us, and do we pass these memorials on to our offspring? ​

  • Church of Dominus Flevit |

    Dominus Flevit Church Photo Gallery Places of Interest Dominus Flevit Church Location 1. Dominus Flevit (Latin for "the Lord wept") is a Roman Catholic church on the Mount of Olives, opposite the walls of the Old City of Jerusalem in Israel. ​ 2. It's located halfway down the western slope of the Mount of Olives and marks the place where Jesus wept over Jerusalem's future fate. 3. The Triumphal Entry begins at the upper part of the Mount of Olives and winds its way down to the bottom of the mountain to the Garden of Gethsemane. Historical Background 1. The present church (finished in 1955) was built upon the foundations of an earlier Byzantine church from the 5th century, which, like most churches, faced east. ​ 2. During the Crusader era (1095-1291 AD), people began commemorating the location. ​ 3. After the fall of Jerusalem in 1187, the church fell into ruin. ​ 4. Around 1525 AD, the Turks claimed to have built a mosque or madrasah using the remains of the earlier church. ​ 5. For quite some time, the Franciscans could not obtain the ruins of the original Dominus Flevit Church. In 1891, they solved this problem by purchasing a plot of land nearby and building a small chapel on it. 6. In 1913, a private home was built in front of the Franciscan chapel. The home went to the Sisters of Saint Joseph, though they eventually sold it to a Portuguese woman. During the construction of the boundary wall of this private home, the workers found the remains of ancient tombs. The site was then thoroughly excavated from 1953 to 1955. ​ 7. During the sanctuary's construction, archaeologists uncovered artifacts dating back to the Canaanite period, as well as tombs from the Second Temple and Byzantine eras. ​ ​8. Other artifacts found were a tomb from the bronze era and a necropolis (building used to encase tombs) dating back between 136 BC and 300 AD. This particular necropolis spanned two different periods, as suggested by the two very different tomb styles. The Second Temple era tombs are in the Koki style and the Byzantine period tombs had an arcosolium from the 4th century. ​ 9. In 1940, the Benedictine Sisters sold part of the property to the Franciscans. The old boundary wall was moved at this time to make the division. In 1953, the Franciscans began construction of another wall. While digging the foundations, workers unearthed ancient tombs. ​ 10. The modern church, designed by the Italian architect Antonio Barluzzi and constructed between 1953 and 1955, is held in trust by the Franciscan Custody of the Holy Land. Places of Interest 1. Triumphal Entry Path ​ 2. Entrance to Dominus Flevit Church Property ​ 3. Just after entering the church property, to the right are ancient burial caves with different kinds of tombs. This is also called a N ecropolis, which is a building used to encase tombs. The first type of tomb is a slab with an arch. This was a common tomb style during Christ's time. It was used for wealthier people. The second tomb style is an open shaft and was used for middle-class people. Lower-class people were just buried in the ground with little or no markers. During this time period, the bones would be gathered for a second burial after about a year (when the bodies had decomposed) and placed in boxes called "Ossuaries." ​ 4. Outside the Modern Church It was designed by the Italian architect Antonio Barluzzi and constructed between 1953 and 1955. It is held in trust by the Franciscan Custody of the Holy Land. It is shaped in the form of a tear. Signifying Christ weeping over Jerusalem because of the future destruction He knew would come because the city rejected Him as their Messiah. It has four jars on the upper corners for holding tears, which was common in Jesus's time. A tear bottle is a small glass bottle representing sorrow described in the Bible. Tear bottles were used to capture an individual’s tears during moments of grief as a sign of mourning or repentance. The bottles on this church represent the tears Jesus shed over Jerusalem. The Bible says that one day, God will wipe away all our tears: "He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away” (Rev. 21:4). 5. Pillars from the Crusader Period It appears these pillars were part of a Crusader Church from around 1150 AD, built over the ruins of the original Byzantine Church. 6. Mosaic from the Byzantine Church Just to the left of the modern church is a Byzantine mosaic floor dating to the beginning of the fourth or fifth century AD. Ribbons and wave motifs surround the floor. The center of the carpet is divided by squares containing round frames. The circles contain fruit, vegetables, flowers, and fish. The motifs reflect the importance of agriculture in Jerusalem's Byzantine era. Parts of the mosaic can also be seen inside the modern church building, with a limestone slab bearing a large cross in the middle. ​ 7. Inside the Modern Church Apse of the Byzantine Church — After entering the modern church, the original apse (semi-round circle marking the front of a church) can be seen. The original Byzantine church faced east, as did all churches during this era. Some of the mosaic floors have been preserved from this church. A cross from this period can be seen at the center of the floor. Ceiling—The ceiling is covered with gold. This color represents heavenly tears, namely, those of Jesus as He wept for Jerusalem, knowing its coming destruction. Four carved reliefs on the sides of the ceiling show the (1) Triumphal Entry, (2) the destruction of Jerusalem, (3) Mary, the mother of Jesus and other women, and (4) Peter, James, and John, disciples of Jesus. The western window of the Dominus Flevit Church provides a beautiful view of the Temple Mount. A mosaic on the altar of the Dominus Flevit Church illustrates a hen gathering her chickens, according to Luke 13:34: O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, just as a hen gathers her brood under her wings , and you would not have it! ​ 8. Crown of Thorns Tree Right in front of the modern church is a tree with huge thorns. It was from a tree like this that the crown of thorns was most likely made and placed on Jesus' head. ​ 9. Location Where the Ashes of the Red Heifer Were Offered Some believe the ashes of the Red Heifer would have been offered in this area. It was right across from the Temple and fits the biblical description. Numbers 19:1-3: Now the Lord spoke to Moses and to Aaron, saying, 2 “This is the statute of the law that the Lord has commanded: Tell the people of Israel to bring you a red heifer without defect, in which there is no blemish, and on which a yoke has never come. 3 And you shall give it to Eleazar the priest, and it shall be taken outside the camp and slaughtered before him. ​ 10. Bethphage (beginning point of the Triumphal Entry) 11. Mount of Olives ​12. Garden of Gethsemane 13. Temple Mount ​ Triumphal Entry Background ​ 1. The Triumphal Entry was a major event in the life of Jesus wherein He entered Jerusalem on the Sunday before He would be crucified (Friday the Passover) and rise from the dead the following Sunday. 2. Christ designed this event to broadcast to the Nation of Israel that He was their Passover Lamb. 3. It is also called Palm Sunday because palm branches were laid on the road as Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey. 4. It would mark Christ’s last days of intensive teaching and condemnation of the Jews for rejecting Him and His message. 5. It would begin Christ’s last week on earth. ​ Triumphal Entry in the Bible 1. The Triumphal Entry was prophesied in the Old Testament. Some 450–500 years earlier, the Prophet Zechariah prophesied: "Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your King is coming to you; He is just and having salvation, lowly and riding on a donkey, a colt, the foal of a donkey” ( Zech. 9:9). ​ 2. The Triumphal Entry was fulfilled in the New Testament. Matthew 21:7–9: They brought the donkey and the colt, laid their clothes on them, and set Him on them. 8 And a very great multitude spread their clothes on the road; others cut down branches from the trees and spread them on the road. 9 Then the multitudes who went before and those who followed cried out, saying: “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD!’ Hosanna in the highest!” 3. Palm Sunday was also the fulfillment of the Prophet Daniel's "seventy-sevens" prophecy. Daniel 9:25: Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the command to restore and build Jerusalem until Messiah the Prince, there shall be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks; the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublesome times. 4. The Triumphal Entry, which occurred the Sunday before the Passover, was also lamb selection day for the Passover. According to Exodus 12, this was the day set aside for each Israelite family to choose the lamb they would kill for their Passover meal. The blood from their lamb was to be put on the doorposts of their homes so the angel of death would not kill their firstborn children. The Passover was celebrated each year to mark their deliverance from Egypt and how God had miraculously saved them. The fact that Christ entered Jerusalem on this very day was no accident. He was proclaiming Himself as the Passover Lamb, not only for the Israelites but for all humanity. 5. Christ entered Jerusalem riding on a donkey. Luke 19:28–35: And when he had said these things, he went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem. 29 When he drew near to Bethphage and Bethany, at the mount that is called Olivet, he sent two of the disciples, 30 saying, "Go into the village in front of you, where on entering you will find a colt tied, on which no one has ever yet sat. Untie it and bring it here. 31 If anyone asks you, 'Why are you untying it?' you shall say this: 'The Lord has need of it.'" 32 So those who were sent went away and found it just as he had told them. 33 And as they were untying the colt, its owners said to them, "Why are you untying the colt?" 34 And they said, "The Lord has need of it." 35 And they brought it to Jesus, and throwing their cloaks on the colt, they set Jesus on it. The meaning of a donkey. A donkey was a symbol of peace; a horse was a symbol of war. Christ came to make peace with mankind at His first coming by dying for our sins. However, at His second coming He will come riding a horse to wage war with mankind and judge them for their sinful rejection of Him. 6. The crowd took branches of palm trees and cried out, "Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.” John 12:12–13: So, they took branches of palm trees and went out to meet him, crying out, "Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord, even the King of Israel!" It was a cry for deliverance from Roman occupation. The last time the Israelites had their freedom, during the Maccabean rule from 167–63 BC, their money had the symbol of a palm branch as a sign of freedom. It was like the national flag of a country. It was the Jew’s way of saying that they wanted Christ to be their King and deliver them from the Romans.The meaning of the palm branches. ​ 7. At the place marked by the church, Dominus Flevit, Christ paused and wept over Jerusalem. Luke 19:41–44: And when he drew near and saw the city, he wept over it, 42 saying, "Would that you, even you, had known on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes. 43 For the days will come upon you, when your enemies will set up a barricade around you and surround you and hem you in on every side 44 and tear you down to the ground, you and your children within you. And they will not leave one stone upon another in you, because you did not know the time of your visitation." There are only two times in the Bible where it is noted that Christ wept. The first time was at the death of Lazarus, and the second during His triumphal entry into Jerusalem. Both places are located on the Mount of Olives. In this account of Christ weeping, He wept for those who aren’t saved and the judgment that awaits them. Within 40 years, in AD 70, Jesus’ prophecy was fulfilled. Roman legions besieged Jerusalem and, after six months of fighting, burnt the temple and leveled the city. 8. The first time Christ wept took place at the death of Lazarus just a week or so earlier on the backside of the Mount of Olives. J ohn 11:33–36: When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in his spirit and greatly troubled. 34 And he said, "Where have you laid him?" They said to him, "Lord, come and see." 35 Jesus wept. 36 So the Jews said, "See how he loved him!" In this account, Christ weeps for those who suffer. ​ Faith Lesson 1. The Triumphal Entry was a prophesied event from the Old Testament and reveals the validity of Scripture and God’s sovereignty. 2. Christ wept over Jerusalem because of their rejection of Him and the judgment that would await them as a result. Does Christ weep for you because you don’t know Him and will be separated from Him in hell for all eternity? 3. Christ wept with those at the death of Lazarus. Does Christ weep with you as He understands your pain and suffering?

  • Privacy Policy

    Pivacy Policy Holy Land Site Privacy Policy This privacy policy has been compiled to better serve those who are concerned with how their 'Personally Identifiable Information' (PII) is being used online. PII, as described in US privacy law and information security, is information that can be used on its own or with other information to identify, contact, or locate a single person, or to identify an individual in context. Please read our privacy policy carefully to get a clear understanding of how we collect, use, protect or otherwise handle your Personally Identifiable Information in accordance with our website. What personal information do we collect from the people that visit our blog, website or app? When ordering or registering on our site, as appropriate, you may be asked to enter your name, email address, mailing address, phone number or other details to help you with your experience. When do we collect information? We collect information from you when you fill out a form or enter information on our site. How do we use your information? We may use the information we collect from you when you register, make a purchase, sign up for our newsletter, respond to a survey or marketing communication, surf the website, or use certain other site features in the following ways: To allow us to better service you in responding to your customer service requests. To quickly process your transactions. To follow up with them after correspondence (live chat, email or phone inquiries) How do we protect your information? We do not use vulnerability scanning and/or scanning to PCI standards. An external PCI compliant payment gateway handles all CC transactions. We use regular Malware Scanning. Your personal information is contained behind secured networks and is only accessible by a limited number of persons who have special access rights to such systems, and are required to keep the information confidential. In addition, all sensitive/credit information you supply is encrypted via Secure Socket Layer (SSL) technology. We implement a variety of security measures when a user enters, submits, or accesses their information to maintain the safety of your personal information. All transactions are processed through a gateway provider and are not stored or processed on our servers. Do we use 'cookies'? Yes. Cookies are small files that a site or its service provider transfers to your computer's hard drive through your Web browser (if you allow) that enables the site's or service provider's systems to recognize your browser and capture and remember certain information. For instance, we use cookies to help us remember and process the items in your shopping cart. They are also used to help us understand your preferences based on previous or current site activity, which enables us to provide you with improved services. We also use cookies to help us compile aggregate data about site traffic and site interaction so that we can offer better site experiences and tools in the future. We use cookies to: Compile aggregate data about site traffic and site interactions in order to offer better site experiences and tools in the future. We may also use trusted third-party services that track this information on our behalf. You can choose to have your computer warn you each time a cookie is being sent, or you can choose to turn off all cookies. You do this through your browser settings. Since the browser is a little different, look at your browser's Help Menu to learn the correct way to modify your cookies. If you turn cookies off, It won't affect the user's experience. Third-party disclosure We do not sell, trade, or otherwise transfer to outside parties your Personally Identifiable Information unless we provide users with advance notice. This does not include website hosting partners and other parties who assist us in operating our website, conducting our business, or serving our users, so long as those parties agree to keep this information confidential. We may also release information when it's release is appropriate to comply with the law, enforce our site policies, or protect ours or others' rights, property or safety. Third-party links We do not include or offer third-party products or services on our website. Google Google's advertising requirements can be summed up by Google's Advertising Principles. They are put in place to provide a positive experience for users. Google, as a third-party vendor, uses cookies to serve ads on our site. Google's use of the DART cookie enables it to serve ads to our users based on previous visits to our site and other sites on the Internet. Users may opt-out of the use of the DART cookie by visiting the Google Ad and Content Network privacy policy. We have implemented the following: We, along with third-party vendors such as Google use first-party cookies (such as the Google Analytics cookies) and third-party cookies (such as the DoubleClick cookie) or other third-party identifiers together to compile data regarding user interactions with ad impressions and other ad service functions as they relate to our website. Opting out: Users can set preferences for how Google advertises to you using the Google Ad Settings page. Alternatively, you can opt out by visiting the Network Advertising InitiativeOpt Out page or by using the Google Analytics Opt-Out Browser Add-on. California Online Privacy Protection Act CalOPPA is the first state law in the nation to require commercial websites and online services to post a privacy policy. The law's reach stretches well beyond California to require any person or company in the United States (and conceivably the world) that operates websites collecting Personally Identifiable Information from California consumers to post a conspicuous privacy policy on its website stating exactly the information being collected and those individuals or companies with whom it is being shared. See more at: According to CalOPPA, we agree to the following: Users can visit our site anonymously. Once this privacy policy is created, we will add a link to it on our homepage. or as a minimum, on the first significant page after entering our website. Our Privacy Policy link includes the word 'Privacy' and can easily be found on the page specified above. You will be notified of any Privacy Policy changes: On our Privacy Policy Page How does our site handle Do Not Track signals? We honor Do Not Track signals and Do Not Track, plant cookies, or use advertising when a Do Not Track (DNT) browser mechanism is in place. Does our site allow third-party behavioral tracking? It's also important to note that we do not allow third-party behavioral tracking COPPA (Children Online Privacy Protection Act) When it comes to the collection of personal information from children under the age of 13 years old, the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) puts parents in control. The Federal Trade Commission, United States' consumer protection agency, enforces the COPPA Rule, which spells out what operators of websites and online services must do to protect children's privacy and safety online. We do not specifically market to children under the age of 13 years old. Fair Information Practices The Fair Information Practices Principles form the backbone of privacy law in the United States and the concepts they include have played a significant role in the development of data protection laws around the globe. Understanding the Fair Information Practice Principles and how they should be implemented is critical to comply with the various privacy laws that protect personal information. In order to be in line with Fair Information Practices we will take the following responsive action, should a data breach occur we will notify the users via in-site notification within 7 business days. We also agree to the Individual Redress Principle which requires that individuals have the right to legally pursue enforceable rights against data collectors and processors who fail to adhere to the law. This principle requires not only that individuals have enforceable rights against data users, but also that individuals have recourse to courts or government agencies to investigate and/or prosecute non-compliance by data processors. CAN-SPAM Act The CAN-SPAM Act is a law that sets the rules for commercial email, establishes requirements for commercial messages, gives recipients the right to have emails stopped from being sent to them, and spells out tough penalties for violations. We collect your email address in order to: Send information, respond to inquiries, and/or other requests or questions. Process orders and to send information and updates pertaining to orders. Send you additional information related to your product and/or service To be in accordance with CAN-SPAM, we agree to the following: Not use false or misleading subjects or email addresses. Identify the message as an advertisement in some reasonable way. Include the physical address of our business or site headquarters. Monitor third-party email marketing services for compliance, if one is used. Honor opt-out/unsubscribe requests quickly. Allow users to unsubscribe by using the link at the bottom of each email. If at any time you would like to unsubscribe from receiving future emails, you can email us at and we will promptly remove you from ALL correspondence. Contacting Us If there are any questions regarding this privacy policy, you may contact us using the information below. Contact Us Last Edited on 03/08/2019

  • Mount of Beatitudes: Sermon on the Mount, Sea of Galilee |

    Mt. of Beatitudes - Sermon on the Mount Photo Gallery Places of Interest Mt. of Beatitudes - Sermon on the Mount ​ Location 1. The Mount of Beatitudes is located on a hill overlooking the northern shore of the Sea of Galilee. 2. It has a spectacular view of the sea. 3. It has great acoustics. Historical Background 1. This sermon is the most complete and famous teaching Christ preached. 2. It’s 3 chapters long and is found in Matthew 5–7. 3. In the same way the Law was given on Mt. Sinai, many theologians see the Sermon on the Mount as the summary of the New Covenant. 4. In this sermon, Christ clarifies many Old Testament meanings and misinterpretations by constantly saying, “You have heard it said, but I say to you.” 5. The view from the Sermon on the Mount is spectacular and provided a perfect backdrop for Christ’s hearers to see as they contemplated His powerful message. 6. It was no accident that Christ chose this setting as He used nature and creation to aid in much of His teachings. 7. A Byzantine church was erected here in the 4th century and was used until the 7th century. Its ruins have been discovered just a little downhill from the present church here today. 8. Today, the Church of the Beatitudes is an octagonal building located on this site. It was built in 1938 for a Franciscan order of nuns. The eight sides of the church represent the eight beatitudes shown in Latin in the upper windows. Places of Interest 1. Entrance 2. Mount of Beatitudes 3. Sea of Galilee 4. Church of the Beatitudes 5. Beatitude Monastery 6. Monumental Rock (Below Mt. of Beatitudes) 7. Job's Spring (Below Mt. of Beatitudes) The Sermon on the Mount in the Bible 1. In the 8 beatitudes, everything is flipped or reversed from what most of us would understand as blessings. Matt. 5:1–12: Seeing the crowds, he went up on the mountain, and when he sat down, his disciples came to him. 2 And he opened his mouth and taught them, saying: 3 "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 4 Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. 5 Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth. 6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied. 7 Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy. 8 Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. 9 Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God. 10 Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11 Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. 12 Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you. 2. Christ addressed the true essence of anger, adultery, divorce, keeping our word, how to treat our enemies, giving, prayer, and what genuine salvation looks like. 3. He taught about storing our riches in heaven and how to handle worry and stress. Matthew 6:19–20: Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, 20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Matthew 6:25–34: Therefore, I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? 27 And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? 28 And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, 29 yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31 Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the Gentiles [nonbelievers] seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. 34 Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble. 4. Christ ended His message with a sober warning about the importance of obeying and living out His words, not just listening to them. Matthew 7:24–29: Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. 26 And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. 27 And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it." 28 And when Jesus finished these sayings, the crowds were astonished at his teaching, 29 for he was teaching them as one who had authority, and not as their scribes. Faith Lesson from the Sermon on the Mount 1. Christ began His sermon by clarifying the principles of true blessings in life. Do we understand each principle and are we living them out? 2. Christ focused on the heart attitude behind His commands. Do we understand that Christ looks at our hearts and motives for why we obey or don’t obey His commands? 3. Christ stressed the importance of storing our riches in heaven and living for eternity. Do we care about our treasures in heaven or are we mainly just focused on this life and the treasures it has to offer? 4. Christ defined a wise person as one who lived out what He taught. He defined a foolish person as one who heard but did not put into practice what He taught. Do we tend to know what to do but not actually live it out? 5. Are we building our lives on the sand or on the rock?

  • Holy Land Trip: May 2-18, 2025, Registration Form |

    Holy Land Trip Registration Form May 2~May 18, 2 025 Trip How to Register and Secure Your Spot on the Holy Land Experience Trip 1. Fill out and submit the online registration form below. ​ 2. Upon receiving and accepting your form, we will notify you of availability and acceptance into the tour trip group. 3. Upon acceptance into the group, please pay your $500 non-refundable deposit to confirm your spot. ​ Registration Deposit Link Final Paym ent Link ​ CONTACT INFO: Pastor Todd Fink Phone: (541) 603-0881 Email: Website: NEXT STEPS ​ 1. Upon receiving and accepting your form, we will notify you of availability and acceptance into the tour trip group. 2. Upon acceptance into the group, please pay your $500 non-refundable deposit to confirm your spot. ​ Registration D eposit Link Final Payment Link ​ 3. In the meantime, check out our video teachings to the left or see other info about Holy Land Trip orientation, etc. CONTACT INFO: ​ Pastor Todd Fink Phone: (541) 603-0881 Email: Website: TOUR HOSTS Dr. Todd & Letsy Fink - Tour Hosts More about the Finks

Holy Land Site

Bringing the Bible to Life by Seeing Where It Took Place!

Digital Book Cover Front - Israel Book (
Israel Biblical Sites Bible Companion (L
Biblical Sites


Israel Overview Tour of All Biblical Sites

Jerusalem Sites


Jerusalem Overview

Jerusalem Holy Sites Overview


Antonia Fortress

Bethany: Tomb of Lazarus


Chapel of the Ascension: Ascension & Return of Christ

Church of the Holy Sepulchre

Church of Mary Magdalene

City of David Overview

Death, Burial, Resurrection of Christ


Dominus Flevit Church

Eastern Gate


Garden of Gethsemane: Church of All Nations


Gordon's Garden Tomb


Gethsemane to Golgotha:

Christ's Path to the Cross

Hezekiah's Broad Wall

Hezekiah's Water Tunnel


Hinnom Valley Overview


House of Caiaphas: Peter's Denial of Christ


Kidron Valley: Judgment of God


Mary's Tomb & Gethsemane Cave


Mount of Olives Overview


Pater Noster Church: Lord's Prayer, Olivet Discourse

Pilate's Palace: Trial of Jesus

Pools of Bethesda & St. Anne 



Pool of Siloam

Prophecy, Proof the Bible Is True: Mount of Olives


Solomon's Temple

Southern Stairs/Davidson Archaeological Site

Temple Mount Overview

Temple Location

Temple Mount: Pentecost


Temple Cleansing by Jesus


Temple & the Early Church

Tomb of King David

Tombs of the Prophets

The Old Testament Feasts & Jesus


The Upper Room

Triumphal Entry

Via Dolorosa


History Of Jerusalem's Walls and Gates


Western Wall & Tunnels Tour

Other Sites In Jerusalem

Sea of Galilee Sites


Sea of Galilee Overview




Calling of the Disciples


Capernaum: Jesus' Ministry Base




Feeding the 5,000

Gennesaret, Ginosar: Jesus Boat


Jesus Walks on Water, Calms the Sea


Kursi: Demonic Man Healed


Magdala: Mary Magdalene


Mount Arbel: The Great Commission

Mount of Beatitudes


Sower's Cove: Parables of the Kingdom


Tabgha: Restoration of Peter

Yardenit Baptismal Site

Other Sites Around the Sea of Galilee

Northern Israel Sites


Beth Shean

Beth Shean Amphitheater


Caesarea Maritima Overview

Caesarea Maritima: Holy Spirit Given to the Gentiles


Caesarea Philippi


Cana: First Miracle of Jesus

Church of the Annunciation & St. Joseph Church

Dan (City of Dan)

Gideon's Spring


Jezreel Overview

Jordan River Overview

Megiddo: Armageddon


Mount Carmel & Elijah

Mount Tabor: Transfiguration of Christ


Nazareth Overview


Nazareth: Mt. Precipice

Sepphoris (Tsipori, Zippori)


Other Sites In Northern Israel


Central Israel Sites






Ein Karem (Kerem)


Emmaus Road 


Gezer: On Crossroads of the World

Gibeon - Nabi Samwil



Inn of the Good Samaritan


Jericho ~ Tell Es-Sultan


Joppa (Jaffa, Yafo) Overview

Jordan River: Crossing into the Promised Land

Jordan River Baptismal Site of Jesus (Qsar al-Yahud)

Judean Wilderness

Judean Wilderness: Testing of Jesus

Mount Nebo & Moses

Philistine Cities of Ashkelon, Ashdod, Gaza, Ekron, Gath

Qumran: Dead Sea Scrolls


Samaria (Sabastia)



Shechem: Jacob's Well


Shiloh: Center of Worship

St. George's Monastery (Wadi Qelt)

Timnah: Life of Samson

Valley of Elah: David & Goliath

Other Sites In Central Israel

Southern Israel Sites




Beer Sheba: The Patriarchs


Bethlehem Overview

Bethlehem: Church of Nativity


Bethlehem: David & the Psalms

Bethlehem: Naomi, Ruth, Boaz


Bethlehem: Shepherds' Field

Dead Sea Area


En-Gedi: Living Waters


Exodus, Red Sea Crossing, Mt. Sinai




Tel Hebron Overview

Hebron Caves of Machpelah

Herodian (Herodium) Fortress

Oaks of Mamre, Hebron


Kadesh Barnea





Mount Sinai


Sodom & Gomorrah

The Philistines & Their City Strongholds


Timna Park: Tabernacle, Moses


Other Sites In Southern Israel

Other Biblical Sites

Exodus, Red Sea Crossing, Mt. Sinai

Garden of Eden Location

Madaba ( Map), Jordan

Mount Nebo & Moses


Noah's Ark & the Great Flood


Noah's Ark Location


Petra, Jordan

Other Biblical Videos


Life & Ministry of Jesus Series

Jewish Holy Days & How Jesus Fulfills Them

Future of Israel: Its Wars, Conflicts, Prophecies

What Are the Differences Between Islam and Christianity?

Who Has the Rights to the Holy Land? Jews or Arabs?

What Is the Reason for the War and Conflicts in Israel and the Middle East?

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