In Israel the Sabbath begins at sundown on Friday. We were told to expect that many businesses would began closing early that afternoon and that some of the elevators would be set to stop at every floor so that buttons would not have to be pushed. This morning we went down to breakfast in anticipation of the upcoming day and checked out the elevators.
Here we are at the beginning of the day ready to start our next adventure.
The ancient city of Bet Shean. This is a city south of the Sea of Galilee and near Mt. Gilboa.
The creature in the middle is the mascot for Israeli National Parks and was seen on a lot of signs up and down the Highways. This is a rendering of an Ibex Mountain Goat.
One of the main streets of the ancient city.
Only approximately one tenth of the city has been excavated.
Columns above, Frescoes below.
There were frescoes everywhere, whole streets of them. This is the only place I can remember walking over ancient frescoes.
The bath houses are always an important part of the ancient cities.
Ancient utensils used while bathing.
Press the Ctrl key and roll the mouse knob to soom in on the instructions of an ancient bath.
Michelle above and with Beth below.
During its Hellenistic period it was the capital of the 10 Greek cities known collectively as "teh Decapolis". Christ is never mentioned visiting this city.
After Bet Shean we drove north back to the Sea of Galilee. If a person wants to get baptized in the Jordan River this is where it happens.
Above another group ahead of ours readying for Baptism. The water very very clear, you could easily see the fish swimming around.
Our group getting ready.
See how clear is the water.
Our group waiting their turn.
Primacy of Peter Chapel. At this Chapel is the important rock beside it. This is the rock that Jesus stood on as the disciples came to shore in John 21 where Jesus reinstates Peter. He is instructed to "Feed my sheep".
This chapel was beautiful inside and outside.
The restaurant where they served the whole cooked fish called a Peter Fish. I got the fillet.
Outside the restaurant.
12 When Jesus heard that John had been put in prison, he withdrew to Galilee. 13 Leaving Nazareth, he went and lived in Capernaum, which was by the lake in the area of Zebulun and Naphtali? 14 to fulfill what was said through the prophet Isaiah:
15 ?Land of Zebulun and land of Naphtali,
the Way of the Sea, beyond the Jordan,
Galilee of the Gentiles?
16 the people living in darkness
have seen a great light;
on those living in the land of the shadow of death
a light has dawned.?[f]
17 From that time on Jesus began to preach, ?Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.?
Olga did a remarkable job giving us the history of an area.
The synagogue in Capernaum. Part of the wonderful chapter of John Chapter 6 takes place here.
They ask Jesus "What must we do to do the work that God requires?" He simply answers them ?The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.?
Jesus walks on the water while his disciples are crossing the lake to get here.
Here Jesus declares "I am the bread of life."
Jesus says whoever comes to him he will never drive away.
Jesus will not lose any that come to him but will raise them up in the last day.
All wonderful promises!
The white stones are from the 4th century. The darker stones below are from the time of Jesus. Can you imagine how a whole city of darker stones must have looked contrasted to the green vegetation and blue water. Just beautiful! Remember the rock in this area is volcanic rock of the darker color.
The two dark steps are from the time of Jesus.
In Capernaum the centurion that had a sick servant asked for help and Jesus healed his servant.
In Capernaum they asked Jesus if he payed the temple tax.
In Capernaum Jesus heals the paralized man let down thru the roof.
The Sea of Galilee in the distance above the ruins. Here Jesus drives out the unclean spirit of a man in the synagogue. Also while in Cana in Galilee, Jesus healed the officials son here in Capernaum who was sick.
A modern chapel built above the ruins of Peter's house from the time of Jesus. There was a glass floor in the chapel looking down into the house.
Peter's house from the side.
Inside the Chapel over Peter's house.
Capernaum was a windy place. We were told that the winds were directed here by the valley of pigeons on the distant shore in the center. As we left we could see about a hundred wind surfers out on the lake enjoying the wind.
The beautiful chapel at the Mount of Beatitudes.
The grounds were just beautiful.
Dr. David read the Beatitudes to us here.
The Valley of the Pigeons. Jesus used this valley to go north. The pictures do not convey how high and steep the sides of these mountains were. The winds that were funneled through here were directed across the lake to cool Capernaum.
As we would be walking in places like this I would think of John 1:3 "Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made." In God's creation process Jesus knew that one day he would be walking and living in this area. He made it "SPECIAL".
The camera just does not do justice to the scale, nearness, and height of these mountains. There is no substitute for just being there for all five of our senses to take it in.
People were told to stay on the trails or risk injury from falling.
The Sea of Galilee was so beautiful as we returned to our hotel that evening. Just gorgeous! It reminds me of a deep dark blue emerald.
We were all tired after a long but fulfilling day, jam packed with experiences. The next morning we will leave our hotel here at Tiberias and head towards Jerusalem.