Experience the land and lessons of the Bible!

Israel Study Tour

with Thornapple Covenant Church

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13 days including travel
May. 21 - Jun. 2, 2019
View Itinerary

How Much


Led By

Thornapple Covenant Church and Dr. Gary Burge

You’re invited you to join us on a 13 day, all-inclusive Israel Study Tour.

You will be immersed in the land and lessons of the Bible as you’re led on a journey through Scripture while your local guide and driver will bring the past and present culture of Israel alive to all your senses.

Unlike other Holy Land tours, this tour is solely focused on bringing Scripture to life through first-hand experiences in the places the stories actually happened. An all-inclusive trip you’ll be free to focus on each moment without worrying about lodging, tips, transportation, entrance fees, food or water.

What is a GTI Study Tour?

We’ve built into our study tours everything you need for an enjoyable and educational trip. We want you to be fully focused on the lessons and experiences you’ll encounter, and not be distracted by local tipping practices, transportation arrangements, or meal planning.

We believe that as a Study Tour participant you’re not a mere tourist—you’re an investment! This is evident from the moment you book your trip, through to the time you return home to share what you’ve learned with your friends and family.

Our seasoned guides and ministry partners do so much more than handle the details and keep things on schedule. Our local guides have personal experience and intimate knowledge of the places and events you’ll examine, and our ministry partner’s teachers have a shepherd’s heart and a passion for God’s word.

The guides have been so personable and so knowledgeable and so friendly. There’s just never a bad day for these guys. They make you very comfortable throughout the trip.


We got to walk the land and it made our bibles come alive, and my son being 17, he needed it to come alive. It solidified his foundation in his faith.

— Joey

GTI has done such a great job of taking care of everything… allowing us to feel at home and really focus on the things we needed to from the very beginning.

— Jordan

Your Study Tour Leader

Dr. Gary Burge

Dr. Gary Burge

Professor of New Testament , Calvin Theological Seminary

When Lebanon’s tragic civil war broke out in the mid 1970’s, I was a student at the American University of Beirut studying international politics and Islam. I never realized what an indelible mark this year would put on me as this dangerous national tragedy unfolded. Since the university witnessed sporadic closures, I began studying at Beirut’s Near East School of Theology (an Arab-Armenian seminary) and there for the first time was exposed to the technical study of the New Testament (under the guidance of Dr. Kenneth E. Bailey). It seemed that from here my life found its twin navigational markers: the New Testament and the world of the Middle East.

My goal as a speaker, teacher and scholar is to help us realize how knowing the unique world of the Middle East and ancient Judaism can shape how we read the Bible today. This is particularly true of the gospels. Jesus' cultural reflexes were different than ours and unless we understand him in his world, we risk misrepresenting his story. In addition, knowing the world of the Middle East (and its churches) will also transform our understanding of modern issues that persist in that part of the world.

Following graduation from Fuller Seminary, I completed a Ph.D. in New Testament at King's College, Aberdeen University, Scotland. My research was published as The Anointed Community, The Holy Spirit in the Johannine Tradition and this launched a long-standing interest in the literature of John which continues to this day in books and articles

But in addition, I have also retained my passion for the Middle East and travel there regularly. I have also had the good fortune of being befriended by many Arabic-speaking Christian leaders and pastors from Damascus to Jerusalem to Cairo. And their 2000 year story of life and courage is nothing less than inspiring.

EDUCATIONPh.D., King’s College, Aberdeen University, ScotlandResearch: “The Anointed Community: the Holy Spirit & the Johannine Tradition.” Mentor: I. H. MarshallM.Div., Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, CAB.A., University of California, Riverside; The American University, Beirut, Lebanon

Study Tour Details

This is an all-inclusive trip which includes:

  • R/T economy class air from/to Chicago
  • Deluxe Hotels - Buffet dinner and breakfast daily
  • Lunches served on site
  • Deluxe motor coach touring
  • Hydration backpack with bottled water on tour
  • All transfers, porterage, entrance fees and taxes
  • Guide and driver tips
  • Study guides, journals
  • GTI Blog

Your Study Tour Itinerary

Itinerary subject to change.


Tuesday May 21, 2019

ORD to IST on TK6
Depart O'Hare on Turkish flight 6 at 9:20pm


Wednesday May 22, 2019

Arrive Istanbul at 4:45pm (Duration 11 hours 25 minutes)
IST to TLV on TK788
Depart Istanbul on Turkish flight 788 at 6:20pm
Arrive Tel Aviv at 7:25pm (Duration 1 hours 5 minutes)
Lodging: David Tower Hotel, Netanya
David Tower Hotel

David Tower Hotel

Thursday May 23, 2019

Sites: Caesarea Maritima, Nazareth, Nazareth Village, Mount Arbel
Lodging: Ein Gev Kibbutz, Galilee
Caesarea Maritima

Caesarea Maritima

Friday May 24, 2019

Sites: Galilee Boat Ride, Ancient Boat (Ginosar), Magdala, Tabgha, Capernaum, Chorazin
Lodging: Ein Gev Kibbutz, Galilee
Galilee Boat Ride

Galilee Boat Ride

Saturday May 25, 2019

Sites: Gamla, Omrit, Banias, Caesarea Philippi
Lodging: Ein Gev Kibbutz, Galilee


Sunday May 26, 2019

Sites: Beth Shean, Jericho, Lower Jordan, Dead Sea
Lodging: Daniel Dead Sea Hotel, Dead Sea
Beth Shean

Beth Shean

Monday May 27, 2019

Sites: Masada, Ein Gedi, Qumran, Wadi Kelt Overlook
Lodging: Gloria Hotel, Jerusalem


Tuesday May 28, 2019

Sites: Mount of Olives, Gethsemane, Pool of Bethesda, Saint Anne's, Sisters of Zion, Jerusalem Old City, Via Dolorosa, Church of the Holy Sepulchre
Lodging: Gloria Hotel, Jerusalem
Mount of Olives

Mount of Olives

Wednesday May 29, 2019

Sites: Temple Mount, Rabbinic Tunnels, City of David, Hezekiah's Tunnel, Pool of Siloam, Davidson Center, Southern Steps
Lodging: Gloria Hotel, Jerusalem
Temple Mount

Temple Mount

Thursday May 30, 2019

Sites: Church of the Nativity, Beit Sahour, Bethlehem Bible College, Efrat Synagogue, Hebron
Lodging: Gloria Hotel, Jerusalem
Church of the Nativity

Church of the Nativity

Friday May 31, 2019

Sites: Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Garden Tomb, Yad Vashem, Israeli Museum
Lodging: Gloria Hotel, Jerusalem
Church of the Holy Sepulchre

Church of the Holy Sepulchre

Saturday June 1, 2019

Sites: Western Wall, Jerusalem, Farewell Dinner - Bulghourji Restaurant
Lodging: Gloria Hotel, Jerusalem
Western Wall

Western Wall

Sunday June 2, 2019

TLV to IST on TK785
Depart Tel Aviv on Turkish flight 785 at 8:50am
Arrive Istanbul at 12:20pm (Duration 3 hours 30 minutes)
IST to ORD on TK5
Depart Istanbul on Turkish flight 5 at 4:00pm
Arrive O'Hare at 6:50pm (Duration 10 hours 50 minutes)