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Lead Pastor – Redemption Gilbert
Next Gen Pastor – Redemption Gilbert
Upgrades to premium economy or business class are available for an additional charge, which will be determined by the airline’s upgrade price at the time the request is made.
The day has arrived, and we depart PHX, flying overnight to Israel.
Having arrived in Israel we meet our Christian Expedition Tour Director, who will remain with us for the duration of our trip. We transfer to our hotel in Galilee. Conditions permitting, we enjoy a welcome bonfire. Overnight Tiberias area.
We have breakfast and board a private coach, which brings us along the Sea to Caesarea. Acts 10 tells us that the Gentile Cornelius received a vision at Caesarea, which prompted him to send for the Apostle Peter, who then came to Caesarea and preached the Gospel to Cornelius and those assembled at his house. All those who heard the message received the Holy Spirit! In Caesarea, we visit the Roman Amphitheatre, hippodrome, and an ancient aqueduct. We then head to Mt. Carmel, where Elijah confronted Baal and his prophets, and God sent fire from heaven in response to Elijah’s prayer. (1 Kings 18) Then we head to the Jezreel Valley, to Megiddo, the Armageddon Battlefield of Revelation 16. We drive through the area of Cana and Nazareth the hometown of Jesus. We visit Nazareth Village, where we experience how people used to live in the times of Jesus. Overnight Tiberias area.
We have breakfast and then make our way to the Mount of the Beatitudes. We move on to see the Ancient Galilee boat, a boat that was discovered in 1986, and was used for fishing on the Sea of Galilee in the First Century AD. We enjoy a cruise on the Sea of Galilee, which includes a Scripture reading and devotional by your trip chaplain. We go on to Capernaum where we see the remains of the village, including the home of Peter. We then enjoy a “St. Peter’s Fish Lunch,” of fish from the sea of Galilee. We then head to Magdala, the hometown of Mary Magdalene, which also boasts the remains of a First Century synagogue. Today we also enjoy rafting/kayaking on the Jordan River. Overnight Tiberias area.
After breakfast, we head to the Jordan River Baptismal site. Here there is an opportunity to be baptized in the same river in which John the Baptist baptized many, including Jesus himself. We move on to Beth Shean, or Scythopolis as it was called by the Romans. 1 Samuel 31 tells us that King Saul was defeated by the Philistines and died on nearby Mt. Gilboa. When the Philistines found Saul’s body, they fastened it to the wall of Beth Shean. Later, during Jesus’ time, Scythopolis was a member of the Decapolis, a group of ten cities sharing Greek culture and government, mentioned in Matthew 4:25, Mark 5:20, and Mark 7:31. We enjoy a picnic lunch together and time at leisure at Gan Hashlosha, a national park with springs and natural pools. We follow the Jordan Valley to the south and get a sense of Israel’s agricultural fertility, which caused it to be called a “Land of Milk and Honey” (Deuteronomy 31:20). We pass Jericho, which God famously gave into the hands of Joshua and the Israelites in Joshua 6, and which is regarded as the oldest city in the world. East of Jericho is Bethany beyond the Jordan, the area in which Jesus was baptized, Elijah and Elisha crossed the Jordan, and Joshua and the Israelites entered the land that God had promised them. Overnight Jerusalem.
After breakfast, we will depart from Jerusalem and enjoy a sunrise hike up to Masada, the mountain-top fortress that served as the site of a famous zealot last stand. We head, then, to Ein Gedi, or the “Spring of the Goat,” a natural oasis famous for its flora and fauna on the western shore of the Dead Sea. 1 Samuel 24 tells us that it was at Ein Gedi that David hid from Saul in a cave, and spared Saul’s life. Here we experience an Ein Gedi Waterfalls hike. We visit Kfar Hanokdim or Genesis Land, a desert experience including Bedouin hospitality and a camel ride. In the afternoon we enjoy our free time at one of the beaches of the Dead Sea, enjoying it’s healing properties and mud. In the evening we enjoy the visit of the Rabbinical Tunnels and the Wailing Wall. Overnight Jerusalem.
Today we see Jerusalem. First we visit the Temple Mount. We see the Via Dolorosa, the ancient Roman street that it is believed Jesus walked on the way to his crucifixion. We visit the Antonia Fortress, where Jesus was condemned to die by Pontius Pilate. We see the Pool of Bethesda where, John 5 recounts, Jesus healed a disabled man; Stephen’s Gate, also known as the Lion’s Gate or the Sheep Gate; St. Anne’s Church, which was built during the Middle Ages by Crusaders; and the site of the excavation of the Southern Wall, which served as the south side of the second temple. It through this wall that Jesus entered the Temple before His cleansing of it. It is believed that this is where Peter preached on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2). For lunch we experience a cooking class, where travelers prepare their own lunch under the instruction of a well-known local chef. We spend the rest of the day in Bethlehem, the birthplace of Christ. Overnight Jerusalem.
We begin the day by heading to the Mount of Olives. The Mount of Olives provides an incredible view of Jerusalem, Mount Moriah and the Dome of the Rock. We visit the Garden of Gethsemane before moving on to the “Upper Room,” where Jesus and his disciples ate the Last Supper. We walk the Via Dolorosa, and visit the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. This is one of two proposed sites for Jesus’ crucifixion, burial, and resurrection. Finally, we make our way to Golgotha and the Garden Tomb, the other proposed site. This evening, we’ll enjoy our farewell banquet. Overnight Jerusalem.
Your flight home will depart either the night of Saturday March 16th or today. In either case, today we will arrive back in the US.