Life & World Of Jesus

We will trace the life of Jesus from his home in Galilee to Jerusalem, giving particular attention to the influence of Jewish thought and culture of the period on the origins of Christianity.  Our goal is a better understanding of Jesus' ministry, his place among the Jewish people, and the application of His teachings for us today.

Day 1: ARRIVAL IN THE LAND OF PROMISE

Flight from the UK to Israel Overnight: Mediterranean Coast

 

Day 2: LIGHT TO THE NATIONS

We begin our day at the fabulous remains of the Herodian city of Caesarea Maritima, the location from which Paul left the shores of Israel and set sail with the Good News to the Gentile world. Next we visit Mount Carmel for a spectacular view over the North of Israel. Here we will study Elijah’s defeat over the prophets of Baal. On our way to Sepphoris we travel the route

of the ancient Via Maris, passing through the Jezreel Valley, a candidate for the location of the battle of Armageddon. We will devote the journey to discussing Jewish apocalyptic literature and the book of Revelation. At the spectacular remains of Sepphoris we will examine Jesus’ relationship to Elijah and His first miracle. We conclude our day at ancient Nazareth where we contemplate closely Jesus’ home life, town and early ministry. Overnight: Sea of Galilee

 

Day 3: AROUND THE SEA OF GALILEE - THE LIFE OF JESUS’ DISCIPLES

Our day will be spent visiting various sites around Lake Galilee as we try to picture the Galilee ministry of Jesus and the lives of His disciples. We will start the day with a view from the traditional site of the Mount of Beatitudes where we will study together about the Kingdom of God in Jesus’ teachings. Our next two stops will be the “cursed” cities of Chorazin and Capernaum whereby we will discuss Jesus’ relationship to the Pharisees. Along the way we will seek to understand the New Testament fishing industry of these places and their relationship to the miracles of Jesus. After a fish lunch and a contemplative time by the shores of the Lake we will visit Kibbutz Ginossar to see a fishing boat from the time of Jesus. From there we will set sail on the Lake. Before heading back to our hotel we shall visit Beit Bracha, a CMJ centre on the shores of Galilee where we’ll hear about the work of the ministry. Overnight: Sea of Galilee

 

Day 4: EXPLORING THE GOLAN - THE KINGDOM OF GOD & BIBLICAL IMAGERY

Two major sites will occupy our time together today. We begin by climbing up to the magnificent Golan Heights nearby to Israel’s highest mountain. Here we will discuss the Transfiguration and its relationship to the Hebrew Scriptures. At the Gamla nature reserve we will view an impressive city from the time of Jesus and take a gentle hike to the highest waterfall in Israel.

There we will study some wildlife, including one of the world’s biggest birds; we will discuss how this bird is depicted in the biblical text. In the afternoon we will visit a reconstructed biblical village at Katzrin where we will examine life in New Testament times and everyday imagery in Scripture. Overnight: Sea of Galilee

 

Day 5: THE JORDAN VALLEY - FIRE AND WATER

Today we examine the separation of the Church from the Jewish people. Traveling south down the spectacular Syrian African rift we learn how that very conflict was instrumental in renewing various kinds of Jewish settlement in the Holy Land throughout the last 200 years. Our first stop is Kibbutz Gesher, where we will see what is known as one of the hydraulic wonders of the world. There we will learn how a Jewish engineer worked to harness the great rivers of the Jordan and Yarmuch to provide electricity for both Jew and Arab during British Mandate Palestine. At the Jordan River, we will discuss the ministry of John the Baptist and his relationship to the ministry of Jesus. From Gesher we travel to Kibbutz Alfa to examine a beautiful mosaic of a very early synagogue floor. Here we will study the reasons of the separation of the early Jewish church from its Gentile siblings. In the afternoon we will engage in a quiet walk from Tel Jezreel, the site of Naboth’s vineyard, to the En Harod spring, where Gideon elected his small army, and then make our way south to the Dead Sea in the arid Judean Wilderness. Overnight: Dead Sea

 

Day 6: DESERT AS A REFUGE

We begin our day at Masada, one of Herod the Great’s magnificent fortresses and the last Jewish stronghold to fall captive to the Romans. Here we will discuss the nature of the Herodian dynasty and Zealot ideology. On our way back north we will see the beautiful subtropical oasis of En Gedi before making our way to the site of Qumran, home to probably the most exciting archaeological discovery ever made in Israel – the Dead Sea Scrolls. Here we will discuss the relevance of the scrolls and their impact on Christianity. We will finish our day enjoying a float in the therapeutic mineral rich waters of the Dead Sea. After stopping for an overlook of Jericho – the oldest and lowest city on earth, we make the final ascent to Jerusalem – the City of the Great King. After dinner we will be treated to a short stroll for a rooftop panorama of the Old City with Shoresh Director Yoel Seton. Overnight: Jerusalem

 

Day 7: IN THE STEPS OF JESUS - CRUCIFIXION, BURIAL AND RESURRECTION

We begin today with a visit to a tomb from the time of Jesus. We will then walk down the Mount of Olives to Gethsemane where we will learn about crucifixion, burial and resurrection according to Jewish sources outside of the Bible. This will shed new light on the narrative of the heart of the New Testament, the death and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth. Time permitting we shall visit the Sisters of Zion Convent, the possible location of the Antonia Fortress. We then continue to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, and conclude our day with a time of reflection at the Garden Tomb. Overnight: Jerusalem

 

Day 8: RACHEL WEEPING FOR HER CHILDREN

Before participating in the worship service at Christ Church, we will travel to a viewpoint that overlooks the hills of Ephrata.  From here we shall see Bethlehem and the possible location of where shepherds first heard of the advent of Messiah. In the afternoon we shall go to Yad VaShem, the Israel Memorial Museum to the Holocaust. Here we examine the spiritual and theological roots of the most notorious genocide in history and the connection between the Church, Jesus and the Jewish people prior to and during this period of time. There we will also visit the Children’s memorial and discuss the impact of the Holocaust on Jewish Christian relations today. Time permitting we shall conclude our day by finishing off at the Haas promenade for a panoramic view over Jerusalem. After dinner we will be treated to a tour of Christ Church Heritage Centre.

Overnight: Jerusalem

 

Day 9: DISCOVERING JERUSALEM IN THE TIME OF JESUS

Our day will be devoted to learning about Jerusalem in the Second Temple era. An early start will take us up to the Temple Mount, where we’ll consider some of Jesus’ activities there. After a visit to the Western Wall, Judaism’s most holy site, we will take a trip to the tunnels under the Western Wall plaza, affording us an exciting opportunity to walk in Jerusalem at what was street level in the time of Jesus. We then make our way through the Jewish Quarter of the Old City to palatial mansions

which were the home of the Sadducees. Here we study Jesus’ attitude toward the priesthood and Sadducee beliefs. We conclude our day at the excavations at the southern wall of the Temple Mount where we discuss Pentecost. In the evening we will complete our understanding of the role of the Lamb of God by celebrating a Jewish Passover meal together at Christ  Church.

Overnight: Jerusalem

 

Day 10: FREE MORNING & DEPARTURE

The morning is free for rest, relaxation, shopping, or for the energetic, perhaps a walk on the walls of the Old City. In the early afternoon we will drive down from the mountains of Judea to the airport on the coastal plain, ready for a late afternoon departure for the UK.