Friday, May 29, 2009

Walking Through the Holy Land

Jesse and I just got back from Israel, where we were for 10 days. It was a whirlwind tour, and we loved it. I took 640 pictures, so here are just a few of the photos from our trip. Madison stayed with my parents. I was so thankful for that- Jesse and I felt at ease to be completely in Israel, but we did miss our little sweetie. Here we are on the first day, next to the Mediterranean Sea. It was beautiful, and you can tell why Herod chose this place to build his palace.
We went with a group of 15 people from our church. In the background you can see the Dome of the Rock.
Each hotel we visited had a sign welcoming us. They would also have some sort of fruit juice for us- so fun! We stayed in 4 different cities.
Here I am in a tunnel at Megido. This was used to bring water from the well outside the city, under the city wall, and into the center of the town. It was hewn from rock, and was almost 200 feet underground.
We also stayed on the Sea of Galilee. The water was warm, so we went for a swim one evening. Can you believe Jesus walked on this water, and His disciples actually fished here?!
Here is a hillside like the one where Christ preached the Sermon on the Mount.
We took a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee. From the middle you could see around the outside of the Sea, and could see where most of Jesus' ministry took place.
Look at the size of the synagogue! This is in Capernum- Jesus would have been in this building on most Sabbaths.
Jesse preaching overlooking the Sea of Galilee!
Coke Zero in Hebrew by the Jordan River.
Here is the Dead Sea. Definitely no fishing here! This is the view from our room.

Masada is an incredible place, with an incredible story. You can read about it here. We took the gondola up and down, because we were pressed for time, we couldn't hike it. Somehow Jesse managed to run the whole way down- he paid for it with three days of sore legs!
Here we are at Qumran. This is where a shepherd (or possibly thief) found the oldest existent copy of an Old Testament book. We later got to see his find at the Israel Museum of History.
We floated at the Dead Sea at 7:30 in the morning- already pretty warm!
We frequented Aroma Cafe on our trip. It is way better than Starbucks!

Can you see the Ibex? This animal can jump along the little edges of the rock- what amazing footing they have. This is where David would have been hiding from Saul.

Here is "David's Waterfall".

I had a fun camel ride up to the top of this overlook. From the top of this hill you could see Jericho and the Mt. of Olives. What a view! I also learned an important lesson: negotiate the cost of a camel ride BEFORE boarding.

A few ventured into Hezekiah's Tunnel. The water was up to the middle of our legs.

This is the view of the temple mount from Gethsemane. I had no idea it was this close.

Here we are standing next to an olive tree in Gethsemane.

We ran into Doug Bookman, Dr. Varner, and the Master's Chorale several times while we were there. It was a privilege listening to them sing as we went into the Garden Tomb. Quite moving!

He is alive!
A few of us went out one night to see "The Festival of Lights". The sign in the background says "Tower of David."

Overlooking downtown Jerusalem and the Jaffa Gate.

Here are the Southern steps to the temple. This is where Jesus would have done much of his teaching, and next to where Peter would have preached his first sermon in Acts 2.

Pilar was our tour guide. We were glad to have her, as she was like a walking encyclopedia. She new the story behind every stone in Israel.


Drollingers said...

Yay! I'm so glad you guys are back safe and sound. I was praying for you a ton! Isn't it amazing there? I want to go back and bring John. How funny, I rode a camel in the same spot as well, although he didn't charge me...I just asked if I could get on it for a picture and he gave me a ride. He charged everyone after me. So sly. Can't wait to catch up. So excited about the camp!!!

Unknown said...

wow that looks like an incredible trip! i cant wait to see more of your pictures!

Kim Archer said...

i can't believe all those photos they are just way too cool. i won't show clint or he'll be jealous! :) he's been wanting to fly LA via Israel for a while now :)

Mommy Roth said...

What a great adventure! I sure would love to take Steve someday and it has been so long since I have gone it would be like seeing some of it for the first time. Let me know about Wednesday. I can't wait to see you and Maddie if it works out.