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Holy Land Tour with Rev. Dale & Shirley Keffer

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Itinerary

Day by Day

1
friday
Dulles, Istanbul

Tour members are welcomed for our departing connection flights to Tel Aviv via wide-body aircraft arriving the next day. Meals served on board.

2
saturday
Istanbul, Tel Aviv

Upon arrival in Tel Aviv we are met by our guide who will be with us for the time we are in the Holy Land. Board our bus and travel through Tel Aviv, the largest city in Israel. We proceed to our hotel on the sea where we will check in overnight.

3
sunday
Tel Aviv, Jaffa, Caesarea, Nazareth, Megiddo, Tiberias

This morning we proceed to Jaffa and see the ancient port that Jonah left from. We will go via the Mediterranean to Caesarea, capital of the Roman procurators of Judea. Visit the Roman port, Crusader's Moat, Roman theater and aqueduct. Continue to Muhraka on Mount Carmel where Elijah challenged Baal’s priests. This afternoon we proceed to Megiddo to visit the excavations that unearthed 20 different civilizations. This is Michener’s “The Source”. We proceed to Nazareth and Ascend the Mount of the Precipice at the brow of Nazareth to an overlooking surveying the Valley of Jezreel, synonymous with Armageddon. In Nazareth we will visit Mary's Well. We then travel through Cana of Galilee where Jesus performed his first Miracle, turning water into wine (John 2) and then on to Tiberias on the Sea of Galilee for dinner and overnight at our hotel.

4
monday
Sea of Galilee, Hazor, Dan, Caesarea Philippi

This morning we begin our day with a view from Mt. Arbel and then take a relaxing boat ride on the Sea of Galilee where we will be able to look to the shore where so many miracles occurred. Upon our return we will visit the New Testament boat, now preserved and presented in the exhibition at Kibbutz Ginosar. Our next stop will be the Mount of Beatitudes, site where Jesus delivered the Sermon on the Mount. Continue on through the Hula Valley to Hazor, ruins of the powerful Canaanite city destroyed by Joshua and rebuilt by King Jabin and then by Solomon as a chariot city to command upper Galilee. This afternoon we continue to the northern limits of Jesus' travel as we cross the River Hatzbani to Dan, where we combine a nature walk beside the Upper Jordan with views of the ancient ruins, topped by the Israelite high place that supported a golden calf (I Kings 12). Then a short drive to Banias (Caesarea Philippi), dedicated to Pan the Greek god of pastures, flocks and shepherds; here Peter made his great profession of faith recognition of Christ Jesus (Matthew 16). Driving along the foot of Mount Hermon, we ascend onto the Golan Plateau for a magnificent view of upper Israel and end our day with a stop at Kursi. Return to the hotel for dinner and overnight.

5
tuesday
Tiberias, Bet Shean, Jericho, Jerusalem

This morning we will begin our day with a stop at Tabgha and then continue on to Capernaum where we see first century ruins. Our next stop this morning will be at the River Jordan for those who would like the opportunity to be baptized. Continue along the Rift Valley to Bet Shean, where King Saul and his sons were pinned to the walls. It became the Decapolis Capital and was traveled by Jesus and known as Scythopolis. See the ancient theater, Circus Maximus and Cardo Maximo. This afternoon we head down the Jordan River Road to Jericho, the world’s oldest city. From the excavated tel atop the ruins of ancient Jericho we view the lush green Jordan Valley, Elisha’s spring and Qarantal, the Mount of Temptation. Proceed via Wadi Kelt to the Golden City of Jerusalem where from atop Mt. Scopus we behold this majestic city. Check into our hotel for dinner and overnight.

6
wednesday
Temple Mount, Yad Vashem, Shepherd's Fields, Bethlehem

This morning we enter the Old City where we ascend to the Dome of the Rock and the al-Aqsa Mosque, the third holiest site of Islam, located on the traditional site of the ancient Temple Mount. Here the first and second Temples once stood. Continue on to Shrine of the Book and the Model City showing Jerusalem as it was at the time of the Second Temple. Proceed to Yad Vashem where we see the Museum of the Holocaust. "I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord." (Luke 2:10-11). We drive south to the region of Bethlehem passing Rachel's Tomb on the outskirts of Bethlehem to one of the possible sites for Shepherds' Fields. We continue into Bethlehem itself, walking through the restored old town to the Church of the Nativity and visiting the manger and see the cave of St. Jerome. We drive back to Jerusalem for dinner.

7
thursday
Masada, Dead Sea, Qumran

Today we drive alongside the Dead Sea, 1300 ft. below sea level -- the lowest spot on earth -- to Ein Gedi where time permitting we will walk the path to see the waterfall in the desert. Continue on to Masada and ascend by cable car to the magnificent ruins of the fortress where, from 70 to 73 AD, Jewish defenders made their last stand in the Judean revolt against Rome. We see the remains of storehouses, cisterns and a sixth-century Byzantine church. This afternoon, after our stop for lunch, we have time at the Dead Sea for those that want to swim. We continue to Qumran and the caves where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found before returning to Jerusalem for dinner and overnight.

8
friday
Rabbi Tunnel, Southern Wall, Herodium

This morning we will board our bus for our exciting tour to the famous Rabbi Tunnel. Here we will enter by the Western wall plaza and go down to the foundation of the Second Temple. We will see a model that will demonstrate where we are in location to the Temple in the time of Christ. Continue along the tunnel as we proceed to the Gateway of the Priests entry to the Holy of Holies. We will continue to the Temple Institute where we will see the making of the instruments for the new temple. We will see how they are following the Bible for exact instructions. We will see a film explaining where the Rabbi believes the Temple and courts could be located. Next we continue to the Steps that entered the temple and the Southern Wall. It was here that Jesus would have taught the disciples. Next we will visit the Southern Wall excavations. This is afternoon we visit Herodium, the palace set in a conical mountain built by Herod to mark his tomb. Note the xtaposition of the two Kings of the Jews. The King Herod buried in great opulence and the King of the Jews born in a humble manger in Bethlehem sitting in the background of the Herodium. Return to our Jerusalem hotel passing the Knesset and through Mea Shearim. Dinner and overnight at the hotel..

9
saturday
Mt of Olives, Passion Walk, Via Dolorosa, Garden Tomb

We start the day via the Chapel of Ascension and Paternoster to the Mt. of Olives for an orientation view of Jerusalem and the opportunity of a group photograph overlooking Jerusalem. We then walk the traditional Passion walk. We descend to the church known as Dominus Flevit ("Our Lord weeps"). After viewing the Golden Gate, we walk downhill to Gethsemane, where we take time to meditate on the Gospel text and view the Church of All Nations. Entering the Old City we see Pools of Bethesda (John 5) and St. Anne’s Church. The church is perfectly preserved from the Crusader period – with remarkable acoustics. Continuing on we see Pilate’s Judgment Hall, the Chapel of Flagellation, Lithostrotos, and the Arch of Ecce Homo (Behold the Man). We then follow the Way of the Cross (Via Dolorosa) through the bazaars as far as the Holy Sepulcher. From there we walk from the Christian Quarter along the Arab Souks through the Cardo Maximo and past the Armenian Quarter. Continue o n to Mt Zion and to the grounds of a church called Peter in Gallicantu, which affords the best view of early Jerusalem from the west. (Here, the Assumptions Fathers suggest, was the house where the High Priest Caiaphas interrogated Jesus). We board our bus to the Garden Tomb where we will end our day with a special visit and the possibility of having a private communion on the grounds outside the city fr dinner and overnight.

10
sunday
Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, USA

We transfer to the airport for our flight home with unforgettable memories to cherish always. Knowing we have walked in the footsteps of Jesus and the early Christians on such a memorable tour will bring new meaning to our Bible reading.

No Dates for this Tour.