Walking in the Footsteps of Jesus will be a transformative experience you will never forget. Scripture will come to life as we visit the towns and cities where Jesus lived, died and rose again. As we visit each historic site you will come to understand the teacher from Galilee in the context of His time and culture. Each day our worships will occur at a specially chosen Biblical location to help us appreciate more fully God’s goodness to us through the nation of Israel and through the Messiah – Jesus Christ. And as you engage in Scripture after our tour you will forever see in your mind’s eye the places where it happened.
Queen Alia International Airport, Amman, Jordon.
This morning we arrive at Queen Alia International Airport, Amman, Jordan. Welcome to our tour! On arriving we are met by our local tour director, who will escort us during our travels in Jordan. Today we start by visiting the ancient ruins of Amman (the Biblical city of Rabbah) and the place where King David sent Uriah into battle to be killed by the Ammonites. This afternoon we visit the beautifully preserved ancient ruins of Jerash, one of the 10 cities of the Decapolis, and considered to be one of the largest and most well preserved sites of Roman architecture outside of Italy.
Our first stop is Madaba, the Moabite city conquered by the Israelites as they made their way to the Promised Land. Next is Mt Nebo, where we take in the view across the Dead Sea into Israel, the same vantage point from where Moses longingly viewed Canaan before he died. Next is Machaerus—the ruins of Herod’s fortress and the place where John the Baptist was beheaded. This afternoon we head down the Kings Highway to Petra, driving through ancient territory that the Israelites traversed as they made their way to the Promised Land .
Today brings one of the highlights of the tour! We visit the ancient site of Petra, the Edomite city that existed in the time of Christ but was lost to the world for centuries. Carved out of rock in the various gorges and cliff faces, it is one of the New 7 Wonders of the World. Walking down the Siq (the narrow gorge that leads into this spectacular city) and glimpsing the treasury building in the widening gap in the rock is an unforgettable experience. We spend a whole day exploring here.
Overnight—Dead Sea, Jordan.
This morning we start with a float in the Dead Sea, the most concentrated sea water on the planet. Next we head to Bethany Beyond Jordan, the traditional site of the baptism of Jesus where we enjoy morning worship. After crossing into Israel we head to Jericho and visit the ancient tel, the city that the Israelites marched around daily for seven days as they began the conquest of Canaan. Our last treat for the day is the first glimpses of the Sea of Galilee as we wend our way to our kibbutz on the shore of Galilee, which will be home for the next few nights.
Overnight—Sea of Galilee, Israel.
This morning we head to Nazareth, the place where Gabriel appeared to Mary, and also the boyhood home of Jesus. We also visit Mount Precipice, believed to be the site from which the angry mob tried to throw Jesus from a cliff. While enjoying the spectacular view of Galilee we also enjoy morning worship. Next is Nazareth Village, which depicts life as it was in the time of Jesus.
This afternoon we visit Sepphoris—a town close by that although not mentioned in Scripture played a significant role in the lives of those who grew up in Nazareth in the time of Christ. Tonight on the shores of the Sea of Galilee we mark the beginning of Shabbat in the tradition of our Jewish friends.
Overnight—Sea of Galilee.
Our day starts with a visit to Kursi in the Biblical region of the Gadarenes, where Jesus freed two men from the bondage of Satan. Next up we visit the Mount of Beatitudes, where Jesus gave the Sermon on the Mount. Here in our Sabbath worship service we reflect on that powerful message that Jesus gave two millennia ago, and which still speaks powerfully today.
After lunch we continue on to Capernaum, where Jesus visited the home of Peter, healed the multitudes, and taught in the synagogue. We also enjoy a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee. As we look at the surrounding hills and countryside where Jesus taught the multitudes, and as we sail over the waters He calmed during a storm, we take time to worship the God who became man and once inhabited this place. Finally we head home where we close Sabbath on the shore of Galilee.
Overnight—Sea of Galilee.
Following breakfast we head north to the Biblical site of Bethsaida, a remote site of ruins where Jesus miraculously healed the sight of a blind beggar. Morning worship is here in the bush away from the crowds. Heading further north we enjoy spectacular views of Mt Herman before coming to Dan, the place where Jeroboam erected an alter to lure the Israelites away from festival pilgrimages to Jerusalem. We also visit the city gate that dates from the time of Abraham, and take a walk through the National Park to Israel’s most spectacular waterfall.
After lunch we explore Banias, the Biblical city of Caesarea Philippi, which lies at the foot of Mt Herman, and where Herod the Great built a pagan temple to Pan. Here we view the spring that is the source of the Banias River, a major tributary of the river Jordan as it flows down to the Sea of Galilee.
Overnight—Sea of Galilee.
Today we head south to Jerusalem. First is Mt Carmel where Elijah slew the prophets of Baal and prayed for rain. We look over the sweeping view of Israel to the east and south, the Mediterranean Sea to the west, and Mt Hermon to the north. Next is the ruins of the ancient fortified city of Megiddo, famous for its battles in the time of Israel and beyond, and pictured in the New Testament as Armageddon.
Next we head to the ruins of Caesarea—the seaside town in which Cornelius received his vision telling him to send for Peter at Joppa. We visit the Roman amphitheatre and take a stroll around the ruins alongside the shores of the beautiful Mediterranean Sea. Next is Tel Aviv en route to Jaffa, (the Biblical seaside city of Joppa) where Jonah ran from God to Tarshish, and where Peter received his vision of Acts 10 launching the Gospel to the Gentiles. We take a walk through this beautifully restored ancient port, and view the site of the home of Simon the Tanner where Peter received his roof-top vision. This evening we arrive in Jerusalem, home for the next few days.
Our tour today starts with a visit to the Mount of Olives where we take in the panoramic view of the Temple Mount and Old City of Jerusalem. After enjoying the view we start a guided walking tour down the route that Jesus took as He descended into Jerusalem riding on the back of a donkey’s colt. At the base of the walk we arrive at the Garden of Gethsemane, in which stand the ancient olive trees dating back to the time Jesus took refuge in this garden 2000 years ago. Next we visit the Tower of David, Herod’s Palace and the likely site of the trial of Jesus.
After lunch we walk the Via Dolorosa before arriving at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, the most likely site of the burial and resurrection of Jesus. Later this afternoon we have some free time to explore the Old City and shop in the Arab Markets.
The Temple Mount is our first stop today, where we view the Dome of the Rock and site of Solomon’s Temple. We also visit the Rabbinic tunnels that run under the Western Wall. This afternoon we visit the Shrine of the Book, which houses the famous Dead Sea Scrolls, and then on to a stunning model of Jerusalem in the second temple period.
After dinner we head out to the Tower of David Sound and Light Show, a spectacular 3D production that tells us about the different periods of Jerusalem’s history.
Overnight – Jerusalem.
This morning we visit the field of the Shepherds, the traditional site where the angels visited the shepherds, and then Bethlehem and the famous Church of the Nativity built over the traditional site where Jesus was born.
After lunch we trace Jerusalem to its earliest origins, founded in the ancient City of David, where we view an archaeological site dating from the time of Abraham. For those who wish we take a walk through Hezekiah’s tunnel.
Overnight – Jerusalem.
Heading south we stop at Qumran—the site of the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls just 60 years ago, verifying the accuracy of Scripture. We visit where scribes lived and copied Scripture, and view the caves where the scrolls were found. Here we pause for morning worship and reflect on the miraculous preservation of God’s Word. Next stop is an oasis in the wilderness—En Gedi, where David hid from Saul and wrote many of the Psalms. We take a short walk through the National Park to a refreshing waterhole.
This afternoon we fast forward to the time of the Jewish Revolt at Masada—the spectacular cliff-top fortress where 960 Jewish zealots chose death at their own hands rather than surrender to the overwhelming Roman forces. We ascend by cable car and enjoy breathtaking views of the Dead Sea and surrounding mountainous regions. Tonight we welcome Shabbat with Jewish friends at the Western Wall.
Today, our last day, is another highlight as we enjoy morning worship at the Pool of Bethesda and sing in the Church of St Anne with it’s crystal clear acoustics. We then have the choice of worshiping with the Seventh-day Adventist church in Jerusalem or visiting a Messianic synagogue.
After lunch we visit the Garden Tomb. Here, through Communion, during our final worship service together we celebrate the life, death and resurrection of the One who makes eternal life possible for us. Tonight after closing Shabbat at the Western Wall we enjoy our farewell dinner together.
Overnight – Jerusalem.
This morning we say goodbye to our new friends and head to either Tel Aviv, for those travelling on to Turkey and Greece, or back across the Jordan to Amman for those heading home or on to other destinations.