We are to love God and to love people
Mount of Olives:
Rachel spoke to us overlooking Jerusalem in the morning. We read from Matthew 21 when crowds start to see Jesus for the first time. Death doesn’t win but God always does. As a group we said the first half of Philippians 2 and it was a good reminder of what we’ve memorized and the power and meaning behind those verses. Jesus is King over everything in our lives.
Mount of Olives
Separated from the Eastern Hill (the Temple Mount and the City of David) by the Kidron Valley, the Mt. of Olives has always been an important feature in Jerusalem’s landscape. From the 3rd millennium B.C. until the present, this 2900-foot hill has served as one of the main burial grounds for the city. The two-mile long ridge has three summits each of which has a tower built on it.
Sam spoke to us at St. Anne’s but before we listened to her we went into the church and sang How Deep The Fathers Love For Us. We read from John 5 and talked about the Healing at the Pool. We are called to tell people about what Jesus has done for us. The Lord is pursuing all of us and that is a blessing.
This trip has been such a blessing and the Lord is present here in Israel. One thing that the Lord has taught me on this trip is that wherever I end up after Joshua and for the rest of my life, I know that He will be with me every step of the way. I’m thankful that I believe in a God that cares about and loves me.
Today we walked all the way to the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. The church currently has 6 different Christian denominations that use it. This is the place where they thought Jesus was anointed and prepared for burial. It was probably the busiest place we went to this whole trip. They also had a ladder that some guy long ago moved and they decided as a symbol to keep it to show that nothing can be moved without all 6 denominations agreeing. The ramparts were just a long trail that were used to defend Jerusalem. It overlooked David’s city. It was really cool to see the view and where people actually had battles. This final day in Israel has been a great one and I’m sad to go.
While visiting the garden of Gethsemane, Tucker gave us a chance to reflect on our time in the Joshua Wilderness Institute and all the God has given us. Overlooking Jerusalem, I thought about how God brought me to Hume Lake, a quiet place where not much happens. God gave me a year in the forest, living life with a community that is continuously seeking after Jesus. Not only that, He gave me some of the simple things I have come to appreciate all the more after going through a couple years of college: A place to sleep at night, three meals a day, and most importantly a chance to every single day, open the word of God and read, study, and enjoy Scripture. And for all that and more, I am grateful.
The last place our class visited together was the Southern Steps of the Temple Mount. There, we sat down and looked out over the city of David. Bob got up and asked us this simple question, “ What are you going to do with this trip?” In essence, we have spent 11 days in Israel, drinking from a firehouse of information. But the whole point of the trip was not to gain information, but to walk through the holy land with God, to allow Him to work in our hearts and take the information we learn and make it a tool for remembering God.
That when we read our Bibles, we would see the characters and places come alive. We ended our time there with a recitation if the Shema. A reminder that we are to love God and to love people. Praise the Lord for our time here and the experiences Joshua got to share together. We hope we were able to share this all with you as well.
An enormous flight of steps leads to the Southern Wall from the south. They were excavated after 1967 by archaeologist Benjamin Mazar and are the northernmost extension of the Jerusalem pilgrim road leading from the Pool of Siloam to the Temple Mount via the Double Gate and the Triple Gate, collectively called the Huldah Gates. These are the steps that Jesus of Nazareth and other Jews of his era walked up to approach the Temple, especially on the great pilgrimage festivals of Passover, Shavuot and Sukkot.  The stairs that lead to the double gate are intact and "well-preserved." The steps that lead to the triple gate were mostly destroyed. / The risers are low, a mere 7 to 10 inches high, and each step is 12 to 35 inches deep, forcing the ascending pilgrims to walk with a stately, deliberate tread. The pilgrims entered the temple precincts through the double and triple gates still visible in the Southern Wall. Together, the double and triple gates are known as the Hulda Gates, after the prophetess Huldah.
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GTI Signature Tour: Israel & Jordan
Septemer 5-17, 2020
Experience Israel & Jordan for 11 days in the context of biblical history and personal faith.
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