Hello Friends and Family,
Our morning began on the Mediterranean Sea as we awaited our test results. Many of us enjoyed quiet strolls along the beach and a hearty buffet breakfast with eggs, smoked fish and lots of fruits and vegetables, as well as some great coffee.
(Morning coffee on the Mediterranean: Photo courtesy of Matt Eckhardt)
We are grateful that everyone in the group received a negative COVID test! Thanks for your prayers!
After our test results were in, we stopped briefly at Israel College of the Bible, our host college during our time in Israel. Then, we headed north along the Coast to Caesarea Maritima. This old Roman port dating back to the time of Jesus was where the first Gentile converts to the Jesus Way were filled with the Holy Spirit (Acts 10) and where Paul was imprison for two years before appealing to Caesar and heading to Rome (Acts 24-26). Here we saw a Roman ampitheater and hippodrome as well as Byzantine mosaics and Crusader gates and walls. It was a beautiful, and windy, stop on the Mediterranean coast.
(The 2,000 year Roman Ampitheater at Caesarea, still in use today: Photo courtesy of Heather Carmichael)
(Looking down at Herod's palace in Caesarea: Photo collage courtesy of Jeremiah Duncan)
(Looking out on the Great Sea from Caesarea: Photo collage courtesy of Jeremiah Duncan)
(Matt Eckhardt sitting on an ancient toilet: photo courtesy of Jeremiah Duncan)
(Looking out over the port of Caesarea, built by King Herod in the decades just before Jesus: Photo Courtesy of Heather Carmichael)
(More sites in Caesarea: Photo Collage courtesy of Jeremiah Duncan)
(Byzantine Mosaic Inscription at Caesarea)
After Caesarea we headed to the Sea of Galilee. We are staying on the southern end of the lake at a beautiful location. This will be our launch point for the next 3-4 days we explore the ministry of Jesus around the lake as well as first the Northern part of Israel.
(First look at the Sea of Galilee: Photo Courtesy of Jeremiah Duncan)
We are still adjusting to the time change and jet lag, but it is such a joy to be together as a group and visit these incredible places in the Holy Land!
Tonight begins Israel's Independence day celebrations so there are lots of people and families out celebrating the long weekend around the Sea of Galilee! We may even see some fireworks!
Tomorrow we head to Northern Israel to Hazor, Dan and Caesarea Philippi.
Thanks for following along!