Tuesday, April 1, 2014
|Dr. David Jeremiah @ Southern Steps|
|Southern Steps to the Temple Mount|
|The Garden Tomb|
|Sharon @ entrance to Garden Tomb|
|Western Wall or Wailing Wall|
Sunday, March 30, 2014
On to our hotel for the evening: The Dan Jerusalem Hotel is located high on a hill overlooking
Saturday, March 29, 2014
Wednesday, March 26, 2014
Tuesday, March 25, 2014
Monday, March 24, 2014
Sunday, March 23, 2014
Monday, March 24, 2014: Depart Galax for Philadelphia, PA.
Tuesday, March 25, 2014: Depart U.S.A. for our flight to Israel.
Wednesday, March 26, 2014: Arrive Tel Aviv 2:10 p.m. Transfer via motor coach to our hotel in Tiberias.
Thursday, March 27, 2014: Tour Caesarea by the sea, Caesarea Theater, Mount Carmel, Megiddo and Gideon Springs.
Friday, March 28, 2014: Tour Caesarea Philippi, Tel Dan, Golan Peach Overlook and Baptism at Yardinet.
Saturday, March 29, 2014: Tour Nazareth Biblical Village, Mount of Beatitudes, Capernaum, Nof Ginosar and Boat ride on Sea of Galilee.
Sunday, March 30, 2014: Tour Bet Shean, Jericho Tel, Model City, Haas Promenade. Travel to Jerusalem and transfer to a new hotel for the next five nights.
Monday, March 31 and Tuesday, April 1: Tour Southern Steps, Western Wall, View Temple Mount, Davidson Center, Mount of Olives, Palm Sunday Road, Garden of Gethsemane, Via Dolorosa, Fortress Antonia, Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Saint Anne's Church, Pool of Bethesda, Mount Zion, Saint Peter in Gallicantu, Upper Room, Jewish Quarter.
Wednesday, April 2, 2014: Tour Jesus Baptismal Site, Masada, En Gedi Overlook, Qumran and Dead Sea.
Thursday, April 3, 2014: Tour Garden Tomb and shopping. Transfer to the airport for a night flight back to the U.S.A.
Friday, April 4, 2014: Arrive U.S.A. Stay ovenight in Philadelphia.
Saturday, April 5, 2014: Depart Philadelphia for Galax, VA.
We travel to Philadelphia tomorrow and go to the airport for our flight on Tuesday.
I hope to be able to post to this blog during our trip.
There were a few issues I WILL have to deal with:
1. If I am not too tired when we get back to the hotel after touring all day; and,
2. If I can get my photos downloaded from my digital camera and edit the photos; and,
3. If I can remember everything I heard during the day; and,
4. If I can get an Internet connection at the hotel.
Then the blog might happen. If not, then some of our trip might not get posted until we return home.
Saturday, January 22, 2011
It was a wonderful trip. In addition to the tours to the islands, we were treated to wonderful Christian fellowship; too much good food, gospel music, and one evening a Greek dance troupe came aboard ship to entertain us.
We went ashore via small tender boats. Here we rode to the mountaintop city of Thira on a cable car.
The cable car on Santorini appeared in the 1961 movie “The Guns of Navarone.” The cave with the large guns, however, was shot on the Island of Rhodes. A little poetic license.
There were two ways to reach the top of Santorini, via cable car or by donkey. We chose the cable car. In this photo you can see the zig-zag route of the donkeys which took longer to reach the top than the cable car (and, by the way, a lot more smelly). We spent the day shopping and exploring the beauty of the island. There were a large number of shops, especially jewelry and souvenir shops.
Sharon and I ate lunch at a seaside café with a traditional Greek seafood lunch. The meal for two included: Prawns, anchovies, mussels, calamari (squid), octopus, deep fried sardines, and another larger fish that was also deep fried. The plate included a salad of eggplant, olives, lettuce and tomatoes. Including drinks of water, coke and mineral water the total bill was €41, approximately $60 US.
The original inhabitants of Rhodes were probably Greeks who settled there in about 1000 BC. According to legend, the island was first governed by a grandson of Crete’s King Minos. Little else is said about the island until Homer records in the Iliad that soldiers from Rhodes took part in the Trojan War.
A picturesque drive along the eastern coastline brings us to the city of Lindos. This enchanting site, the most important of the three great cities of ancient times, is guarded by medieval walls constructed by the Knights of St. John in the 13th century. From the Acropolis (incidentally, every Greek city has an acropolis which means "the high point") there are breathtaking views of the great expanse of the Aegean Sea, and St. Paul’s Bay where the Apostle Paul cast anchor during his historic voyage to Ephesus. We climb the Great Staircase to the Temple of Athena, among the most important temples of the Ancient Greek World. The climb was treacherous; very steep, slippery rocks, and no handrails.
In about the 2nd Century BC, Patmos was subjected by the Romans. The island fell into a state of decline and began to be used as a place of banishment. It was in this context, in 95 AD, that the Apostle John was sent to Patmos under the rule of Emperor Domitian.
During his 18 month stay on the island, he wrote the book of The Revelation and converted many inhabitants of the island to Christianity.
In September, 96 AC, Domitian was assassinated and the new Emperor of Rome, Vocceius Nerva, recalled all those who had been exiled to the island. John was returned to Ephesus.
Once on land, a short bus ride takes us to the Monastery of St. John. In 1088 AC, Patmos was given to St. Christodolelos for use as a monastery. The Monastery is over 900 years old and contains many well preserved frescoes, mosaic icons, medieval textiles and vestments. Included in the library of ancient books and manuscripts are 33 pages of an early 6th Century copy of the Gospel of Mark. Other pages of this document are housed in the Vatican City in Rome, the British Museum in London and in St. Petersburg, Russia.
Nearby we visit the Grotto of the Apocalypse, presumed to be the place where John wrote the book of Revelation (Revelation 1:9-11 I, John, your brother and companion in the suffering and kingdom and patient endurance that are ours in Jesus, was on the island of Patmos because of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus. On the Lord’s Day I was in the Spirit, and I heard behind me a loud voice like a trumpet, which said: “Write on a scroll what you see and send it to the seven churches: to Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia and Laodicea”). According to tradition, it was from within the cave that is now housed inside the monastery, where this took place. Inside we can see the niches in the wall that mark the pillow of John and the ledge used as a desk. Also we see the three-fold crack many believe to be made by the Voice of God to emphasize the honor of the Trinity. Photography was not permitted inside the cave.
Inside the city we stopped for a group picture and a brief message from Dr. Stanley in the Grand Theatre. This magnificent ancient theater which will seat 25,000 people has such perfect acoustics in its natural bowl shape that Dr. Stanley did not have to use a microphone.
The major site of excavation, where the ruins of the Roman Forum from the 2nd Century AD are located, is divided by a modern highway. It has been found that many large staircases and other structures still remain buried beneath the road.
Philippi is also on the Via Egnatia, the trade route from Rome to the east. There are large sections of the Roman road still evident in Philippi.
In 42 BC, Philippi was the site of the famous battle of Roman leaders. Brutus and Cassius fought against Mark Anthony and Octavius. Mark Anthony and Octavius claimed the victory resulting in the suicidal deaths of both Brutus and Cassius.
In 50 AD, Paul and Silas arrived to preach Christianity (Acts 16:12 From there we traveled to Philippi, a Roman colony, and the leading city of that district of Macedonia. And we stayed there several days.), and the first European convert, Lydia, was baptized (Acts 16:13-15 On the Sabbath, we went outside the city gate to the river, where we expected to find a place of prayer. … One of those listening was a woman named Lydia, a dealer of purple cloth…When she and the members of her household were baptized, she invited them to her home.) There we visited the chapel that commemorates the baptism of Lydia.
No tour to Philippi could be complete without a visit to the site of Paul’s imprisonment. From here Paul was inspired to write Philippians 1:7-14. After Paul and Silas were imprisoned for proselytizing, there was an earthquake and God opened the doors of the prison and set Paul and Silas free. This story is recorded in Act 16:25-26: “About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everybody’s chains came loose”. The Scripture goes on to record how the jailer and his whole family came to believe in Paul’s God. St. Paul’s prison was a Roman cistern that was converted into a prison. As you can see, it was a crude and uncomfortable place. A church was later built over the site, but since destroyed.
We also visited the Eptapirgion Walls (ruins) that stretch along the northern edge of the old city. From the top of the hill it is possible to imagine where the wall originally went to the south because the Lefkos Pirgos (White Tower) still stands and is all that remains of the southern part of the wall down by the seaport’s coast.
It was in Berea that we saw a dog that looked exactly like Jill, Billy and Grayson’s dog, Jilly. There were tame dogs or cats in all the cities that we visited in Greece. The city feeds and cares for the animals, and they are all well fed and well behaved.