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Holy Land Day 5

Busy day.  Left Bethlehem and headed west, though the Wall checkpoint and out of the “west bank”.  We traveled up the coast towards Caesarea.  We passed the area where David fought Goliath.  Most striking was the change in almost everything as we passed out of the west bank.  The topography went from barren rocks to tree covered hills and deep green valleys.  The trash on the roads and empty lots, which was so distracting, disappeared.  The roads were wider and well maintained.  The towns seemed more optimistic and stood a little prouder.  Granted we have not considered the terror side of the Palestinian group that hates Israel with a selfish and murderous passion; but we  tend to feel very sympathetic towards the plight of those we have witnessed.  The hopelessness of their situation is depressing to us and I can’t imagine how they keep perspective knowing what their children face.  Their faith is remarkable.

Caesarea is an excavation of the city and palace built by Herod on the Mediterranean Sea.  Impressive.  Our Pastor spoke to us about how Paul claimed Roman citizenship here when challenged over his dealing with Gentiles.  He was imprisoned for two years.  His point was Herod strived with wealth and power to create a legacy. He failed.  But a simple man who had nothing achieved a legacy though his faith.  

Thence on to Megiddo, the site of multiple palaces and fortresses from 2000 BC.  The hills over look the Shakel Valley, the traditional entry into Israel for those who would and have conquered.  Amazing view.

Into Nazareth, and up onto the mountain to see where Jesus’s home town folks tried to throw him off the cliff.    Absolutely amazing view of the valley but it was cold and windy.  I mean very cold and very windy.

We visited Cana, the site of His first miracle at the wedding.  We renewed our vows in a ceremony along with the others, officiated by one of the accompanying pastors.  Then we sampled some of the wine left over when Mary told Jesus to make it happen.

Finally down to Tiberius on the Sea of Galilee. The weather was clear if a bit cold.  The hotel is quite modern and very full.  Great buffet.  

 Very tired.  Long day

aa© Robert Graham 2012