Reflections and Blog

Israel Study Trip Day 9: Into the Negev

Shalom! Today we drove south into the Negev proper and watched the landscape change dramatically. We soon passed through to true wilderness (like the Israelites experienced) before reaching Israel’s southernmost city, Eilat (biblical Eloth, 1 Ki 9:26; 2 Chr 26:2), on the coast of the Red Sea. Here are a few highlights from our stops…

Israel Study Trip Day 8: Shephelah of Judah

Shalom! Today began a four day tour of southern Israel or the Negev. On our drive down to Be’er Sheva (modern Beersheba), we stopped to look at a few sites along the way in the “Shephelah” or lowlands of ancient Judah. Here are a few highlights: David vs. Goliath We stopped at ancient Azekah, one…

Israel Study Trip Day 6 (and 7): Mount of Olives

Shalom! Today was a breezy and much cooler day—perfect for finally getting to visit the Mount of Olives! Here are a few highlights from today: Mount of Olives Just east of Jerusalem across the Kidron Valley, the Mount of Olives (see cover photo) is taller than either hill of Old Jerusalem and essentially divides the…

Israel Study Trip Day 5: North of Jerusalem

Shalom! Today was all about exploring the circle of ancient cities just north of Jerusalem (on what is called “the Central Benjamin Plateau”). Since these cities formed an important economic and strategic crossroads, many OT events took place on this plateau. Here are a few highlights from our investigation today: Gibeah We started our day…

Israel Study Trip Day 4: South of Jerusalem

Shalom! While today was supposed to be focused on the Mount of Olives, an unexpected bike-marathon in the area meant we could not access the site. Therefore, instead, our trip leader took us to some other notable places south of Old Jerusalem. Here are a few highlights: Herodium Herod the Great (72-4 BC), who ruled…

Israel Study Trip Day 3: Jerusalem’s Eastern Hill

Shalom! Today’s itinerary focused on Jerusalem’s eastern hill, the oldest and most important part of Jerusalem throughout Bible times. We started in the north and moved our way south as the sun grew hot and challenged our endurance. Temple Mount We started our morning by finally visiting the Temple Mount. There is too much to…

Israel Study Trip Day 2: Learning Jerusalem’s Geography

Shalom! Our study commenced in earnest on our second day in Jerusalem. After a preliminary time of teaching at our hotel in the morning, we visited several sites in the city to help us get a firmer understanding of Jerusalem’s geography and development during different periods of Bible history. David’s Citadel We started the day…

Israel Study Trip Day 1: Arrival in Jerusalem

Shalom from Jerusalem! As we get ready for another day here (Israel is seven hours ahead of NJ), here are three summary snapshots from our long travel day yesterday. A Good Flight Our flight was scheduled to take off from Newark at 4:30pm, but a mechanical problem (dented cargo door) delayed the flight by about…

Israel Study Trip Day 0

As some of you know, I will be going on a trip next week. Before I graduated from The Master’s Seminary, I had signed up to go on the school’s annual study trip to Israel, but the onset of Covid and travel restrictions meant that the trip had to be postponed. However, because the Covid…

We Are Raised with Christ

As we come to the end of our month of Easter celebration, I find myself thinking about the last stanza of Keith Getty’s and Stuart Townsend’s modern hymn, See What a Morning. The last stanza reads: And we are raised with Him Death is dead, love has won, Christ has conquered And we shall reign…