Israel Study Tour with North Pointe Christian School

Jun 6-17, 2016

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An Empire of Temptation

We have to say goodbye to the Sea of Galilee today. We drove around 1 hour to Zippori after the last breakfast at the Ein Gev by the Sea of Galilee. We went into the Six-Shaft Tunnel. It is about 0.8m wide and 1-3 m high. We were barely able to fit in.

After stopping at Zippori. We "hiked" up to Mt. Precipice with the Chinese Yutong bus and our awesome driver Meir.

Jesus was fleeing from his pursuers at this mountain in Nazareth. "But he walked right though the crowd and went on his way". (Luke 4:30)

We can see the whole town of Nazareth from Mt. Precipice.

We headed to Mt. Carmel after Mt. Carmel. We had a lot of "hiking" with our Chinese Yutong bus and our awesome driver today.

Elijah was here challenging the prophet of Baal. "Elijah went before the people and said, 'how long will you waver between two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow him; but if Baal is God, follow him.'" (1King 18:21) As Mr. Bell said for us; we have to choose ether God or money. Between God and money, there is no middle ground. We cannot stand in between. I think that is one of the biggest challenge for us in this world.

Imagine God sent fire burn up the sacrifice here, and Baal was totally defeated by the Almighty God. How sababa (Hebrew for cool) is it.

Mt. Carmel

Biblically, Mt. Carmel is referenced most often as a symbol of beauty and fertility. To be given the “splendor of Carmel” was to be blessed indeed (Isa 35:2). Solomon praised his beloved: “your head crowns you like Mount Carmel” (Song 7:5). But for Carmel to wither was a sign of devastating judgment (Nahum 1:4).

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Finally, we were at Caesarea. It was the biggest harbor in the world back in the day. It would compare to today's Shanghai. Herod the "guy" (great) had this crazy idea to build Caesarea. It was a place of opportunity. People found job s here and lived here. Volcanic ash was used to build the harbor because it reacted with the sea water creating a primitive concrete. Caesarea named Caesarea because Herod the "guy" wanted to show his loyalty to Rome. Rome had a great impact to the world back in the day, but they also brought temptation and persecution. Especially for the Jew and the Christian.

Although the Roman Empire is gone, the temptation still here. Our desire of power and pleasure will eventually lead us to fall deep into the valley. We have to build our foundation on the rock so that we can prepare the storm that is coming, and set our heart on the things above. Remember Jesus is the path and there are no any other shortcuts.

A great city will be buried by sand, but God's love is everlasting.

Say "hi" to Jerusalem.

Caesarea Maritima

The city and harbor were built under Herod the Great during c. 22–10 BC near the site of a former Phoenician naval station known as Stratonos pyrgos (Στράτωνος πύργος).[2] It later became the provincial capital of Roman Judea, Roman Syria Palaestina and Byzantine Palaestina Prima provinces. The city was populated throughout the 1st to 6th centuries CE and became an important early center of Christianity during the Byzantine period, but was mostly abandoned following the Muslim conquest of 640. It was re-fortified by the Crusaders, and finally slighted by the Mamluks in 1265.

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