The Galilee: Tektons and Zealots under Roman Rule
After a good night’s rest (for most of us), we woke up today beside the Sea of Galilee at Ein Gev Holiday Resort, which is part of a kibbutz. We spent our day in the Galilee region, making a full circle around the Sea.
First was Mount Arbel. From there, we could see several regions of the Galilee and received a history lesson from George as to which people group lived in which region. Some wonderful faith lessons came along with the history lesson. A shepherd walked through the group, calling and whistling to his sheep while we listened to the lessons. The shepherd was wearing jeans and a t-shirt and carrying a cell phone; times have changed! From our vantage point on the mountain, we could see many places where Jesus walked, taught, healed, and called.
On to Zippori, where Herod Antipas first built his capital city. There is an impressive archaeological dig at Zippori, which gave us some great things to see, including beautiful first century mosaics, and provided the backdrop for more faith lessons.
After a great lunch, it was on to the historical site and another archaeological dig at Tel Hazor. This was the second city taken, after Jericho, by Joshua and the Israelites. King Ahab had done some impressive building here, but also some terrible things. An Ashera pole was there (the only one George has seen in Israel), reminding us of times of Israel’s unfaithfulness to God.
We stopped at Capernaum on the northern shore of the Sea of Galilee and saw what remains of a synagogue that was built on the foundation of an older synagogue, where Jesus would have taught. So much Biblical history takes place at Capernaum!
Down the eastern shore of Galilee on the way back to the kabbutz, we saw the place where it was likely that Jesus commanded the evil spirits to come out of the crazed man and allowed them to go into the pigs and the pigs ran into the Sea.
We arrived back at Ein Gev in time to take a swim in the Sea of Galilee, smiling, laughing, and splashing like kids together, then watching the sunset over the mountains and watching the lights come on in the city of Tiberias, across the Sea.
Our tummies are full (great food at Ein Gev), our minds are very full (thanks, George), and our hearts are overflowing! Bless God!
Dave and Deb Kruis