Seeing the Sovereignty of God Through the Ages
After breakfast at the Dan Panorama, we checked out of the hotel and made our way to Caesarea Maritime. It is here along the Mediterranean Sea that Caesar Augustus gave a plot of land to Herod. Herod built a magnificent port here in the short span of 12 years. He named this port in honor of Caesar Augustus and set out to make it the most beautiful port on the coast in hopes that it would be preferred over others, like Joppa to its south.
Dr. Showers gathered us together for a time in the Word, reading from Acts 10. This is the account of Cornelius, the devout Roman soldier, and resident of Caesarea Maritime whom greatly respected the God of Israel. He received a vision that led him to Peter, 25 miles south in Joppa. Meanwhile, in God’s sovereignty, Peter was having his rooftop vision that God revealed to him that the Gospel was not just for Jewish people but for everyone. In this beautiful location with its beautiful waters and impressive ruins, those of us that are Gentile Christians are standing in the location where the Gospel first came to the entire world. https://www.bibleplaces.com/caesarea/.
Before lunch, we were able to stand on the remains of one of the two Roman aqueducts that brought freshwater to Caesarea Maritime. The second aqueduct that was built later as the city grew larger, was eight miles long.
On our way to Mount Carmel, we stopped for a delicious lunch of falafel and schnitzel at a Druze restaurant not far from our next location.
After lunch, we visited the famous site where God worked through the prophet Elijah’s ministry to destroy the prophets of Baal. The account is found in 1 King 17. It was in this spot that God worked in the hearts of Israel to turn them back to Himself. No longer did the people ignore His charge to “worship God and Him only.” After 3.5 years without rain, God dramatically showed through Elijah that He alone is worthy of worship. The rain came and the 450 prophets of Baal were executed. We serve El Elyon, the Most High God! https://www.bibleplaces.com/mtcarmel/
We headed south to Tel Meggido. Here we stepped into the past as we saw what has been uncovered from the 25 layers of civilization at this strategic site. For many centuries all the armies and all the trade of the world passed through this stronghold.
In the distance, we could see Nazareth, where Jesus grew up and at the forefront was the massive Valley of Jezreel where one day the nations of the world will gather to join forces to destroy Jerusalem. It is overwhelming to look out over this place and to realize as a believer that I will be present with Jesus when He comes back to judge the nations for the way they treated His people (Rev 16-19). Not only will God judge the nations, but He will also prepare His people to lead the world in worship when Jesus takes his throne in Jerusalem (Zech 12).
After scenic hour drive northeast, we arrived at the Ramot Holiday Resort Kibbutz on the Sea of Galilee for dinner and a good night’s rest. Our hearts are filled with praise as our minds consider the faithfulness of our God to communicate through His Word all that He was doing here in Israel so long ago. And it was and is out of love for His people, of which we are all beneficiaries when the Gospel was proclaimed throughout the world. May we rest in His sovereignty and trust Him increasingly to use us for His glory as witnesses of what He has done in our lives.
Blog author: Steve Conover
Executive Vice President
The Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry
Photos: Becca Stover