Israel day 6 (Jan 15, 2014)
On today’s agenda we saw ruins of major Herodian cities (Caesarea Philippi and Bet She’an), and also standing on Mt. Carmel. It is hard to say just how amazing the sites were, and you need to look up these sites to learn the history since I do not have the room on this blog.
But know this, I felt like I was back in Rome while looking at Caesarea Philippi and Bet She’an.
These two cities were remarkable. They were truly amazing feats of their time: Bet She’an for the Greeks and Romans, and Caesarea for Herod.
My mental capacities are quickly dropping, so forgive me if I ramble.
These cities were the Los Vagas, New York, Chicago, or Los Angeles of their times. They had all the attractions one could desire. And, they had paganism.
The passage that came to mind was the one talking about “What does it profit to gain the whole world but lose your soul?” How many Jewish boys and girls sold their souls for the pleasures of this city? How many abandoned true YHWH worship? Did Adonai become a god (yes, lower case) amongst the gods?
Did they even know that they abandoned the one true God for something fleeting?
The obvious modern parallel cannot be pushed too far to say that cities are evil. But we do need to be aware of just how much we are syncretizing. We must always know if we are abandoning God and pursing power, sex, or money. (Oh, and Paul says something about that in 1 Tim 6… right? )
But enough about that. I also have to say it was one of the coolest experiences of this trip to hear a teaching on 1 Kings 18 while on Mt. Carmel.
I stood on the very mountain where God rained down fire!
And my prayer is that I trust God to be just as powerful now.
He is able to follow through for his people, and He cannot be defeated.
May we ever praise Him and honor his name.
P.S. I love this trip, but it will be great to embrace my fiancé in 3 days.