Never forget the WOW! factor
FYI jumping waves in the Sea of Galilee is sabobba (Hebrew slang for "cool/fantastic") several of us went for a swim after dinner tonight. As I swam, I tried to imagine what it was like 2,000 years ago when Jesus calmed the stormy waves AND WALKED ON WATER! I think many times we hear the Bible stories many times over and forget the wow factor. We truly serve a powerful God!
Well, like most days we heard Beep beep beep! The phone rang at 6:30 for our wake up call. Our fifth day here began! We all ate a hearty breakfast and piled into the bus! First stop: a wheat field! What??? I too was confused. However, in that field we heard the parable of the man who sowed his wheat on several different paths. We could visually see the good soil, the rock paths, and the thorns. Having the field in front of us and hearing the words, we began to truly grasp the meaning. We also discussed how in the time of Ruth, she would gather the extra wheat left in the fields from harvest. With the visuals, it became not just a story, but fact and truth.
Next stop: we headed to the tribe of Dan! When we got off the bus and saw the lush, green, and fertile land, we were so excited! After being in the desert the first few days we saw very little foliage. Anyways that was one thing we all noticed right away. At Dan we heard that God determines how we should worship, not us. We must not be like Micah during the time of the Judges, but rather we must follow the law he has laid out for us. We also cannot mix Christianity with the world around us. Rather, we must be on fire for Christ and worship him as he demands us. While there we saw the ruins and learned about the Dannites, too.
On the northern frontier of the kingdom, Dan was particularly well fortified. This gatehouse was built in the ninth century, probably by Ahab, and is part of a series of gateways discovered.
Third: WATERFALLS!! And all I can say is woah and wow!
Fourth: Caesarea Philippi-- This was a city of pure evil. There are sayings of how Satan roamed the streets. The people were totally immoral and worshipped false gods. One of these gods was Pan, the god of nature. (And also frying pans! Jk) Jesus took his disciples away from capernaum for a 2 day walk to one of the most pagan and sin filled cities. WHY??? Because Jesus wanted to teach his disciples that he came to save all people, especially the lost. Look up Matthew 16!
This abundant water supply has made the area very fertile and attractive for religious worship. Numerous temples were built at this city in the Hellenistic and Roman periods.
Fifth: Qatzrin-- an ancient city that helped us visualize houses, olive presses, grape crushing hut, and synagogue replicas during Jesus' time.
It was a very full day with great teaching!
"It's good to be the king" Ronen
-while receiving Hebrews lessons from Ronen, he explained that when Jews like something they say the equivalent of "Totally waste of time." Then Mr. Bell said, "I guess more students liked my class than I'd originally thought.
-while learning about pan Ronen was giving characteristics about this god. When I said," he liked cooking--especially with his frying PAN!" (Dad, that joke is for you! :) )
Thanks for your continued prayer! Shalom!