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Israel Study Tour with Oakbrook Church, Faith Christian Reformed Church

March 7-17, 2016

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Today’s journey began on the very sea that Jesus walked, where he called out to his disciples, and around which he carried out much of his ministry. As we sailed the Sea of Galilee, we listened to worship music and reflected in our journals on Jesus’ life. A moment of particular poignancy occurred as the lyrics to “Oceans” hung in the air: “I will call upon your name, and rest my eyes above the waves. As oceans rise, my soul will rest in your embrace, for I am yours and you are mine.”

After departing from the sea, we visited the Jesus Boat Museum and then hiked Mt. Arbel, the site upon which Jesus chose his disciples. The view from the top was incredible and it overlooked the Sea of Galilee as well as most of the sites of Jesus’ ministry that we saw later today.

Mount Arbel

Mount Arbel (Hebrew: הר ארבל‎‎, Har Arbel) is a mountain in The Lower Galilee near Tiberias in Israel, with high cliffs, views of Mount Hermon in the Golan Heights, trails to a cave-fortress, and ruins of an ancient synagogue. Mt. Arbel sits across from Mount Nitai; their cliffs were created as a result of the Jordan Rift Valley and the geological faults that produced the valleys.

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Lunch was a culinary highlight as many experienced their first mouthful of falafel.

The entire afternoon was spent trekking the “Evangelical Triangle” which is composed of three cities: Chorazin, Capernaum, and Bethsaida, wherein Jesus conducted 70% of his ministry. Marshall and Troy taught on the early Jewish institutions of education, the synagogue, and the insula (or household). The team was also very moved by the teaching at Tagbgha as we recalled Peter’s betrayal and subsequent repentance and Jesus’ forgiveness of him as well as how imperative this was for the creation of the first church.

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