Carmel, Caesarea, and Christmas in May
Trip Start May 25, 2008
12Trip End Jun 05, 2008
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We drove through the Jezreel Valley and past Megiddo (Armageddon), where archaeologists have uncovered the remains of more than 20 historical periods dating from 4000 BC to after AD 500
We then went to Mount Carmel, where 250 sites have been discovered that have been inhabited by prehistoric humans beginning 100,000 years ago. Elijah prayed on the top of Mount Carmel (1 Kings 18:42-46), and he proved who the true God is to the prophets of Baal. Then, to beautiful Caesarea, founded by Herod the Great. It is a city that Paul visited three times, and he spent two years in prison there.
Then...Bethlehem, Jesus' birthplace (Luke 2:1-7). Joseph and Mary, with baby Jesus, fled Bethlehem and went to Egypt to avoid the cruelty of Herod, who had all of the babies age two and younger killed in Bethlehem in an attempt to kill the Messiah (Matthew 2:13-18). The tomb of Rachel, wife of Jacob and mother of Joseph, is located just outside of Bethlehem. David was born there and was a shepherd there. Our guide and bus driver were not allowed in Bethlehem because it is Palestinian and our guide and driver are Israeli. We had to switch buses and ride with a Palestinian guide. The Church of the Nativity was really beautiful. We touched the rock where Jesus was born. The church is actually divided into three churches: Greek Orthodox, Armenian, and Roman Catholic. Each year, on television, a Roman Catholic service is shown on Christmas Eve from this church. We then had a worship service in Bethlehem and sang Christmas songs. It was lovely! Now, to bed after a loooong day!
Today's Hebrew word: ruach spirit; enthusiasm