The group on the stage of the theater at Beth She’an
Yet another beautiful day in Israel. Warm and sunny! Started the day on Mount Arbel with the views of the Sea of Galilee. From there we drove west to Sepphoris and viewed its striking remains, especially the outstanding mosaics. We also took the time to visit part of the elaborate water system that maintained the city. Then it was on to Megiddo with its 29 layers of occupations including the most ancient Canaanite temple and many other sacred site remains, palaces, stables, grain silo, and more. The highlight was probably the chance to go down the ancient shaft and tunnel to Megiddo’s water source. Lunch options near Megiddo included delicious schwarma, falafel, or a McDonald’s. I’m told that the McKebobs were good, but the people who went there were most excited about having ice in their drinks or getting soft ice cream. Passing by Harod Spring, we remembered the story of Gideon. Next stop was Beth She’an whose tel dates at least as far back as the 12th century when the Egyptians ruled, through the time when Saul and Jonathan’s bodies were hung on the walls after they had been killed by the Philistines, and up through the Greco-Roman and Byzantine city whose fabulous structures were destroyed by an earthquake in the 8th century.
Ellen led our devotions at Megiddo, and she reflected on the matter of wars, since Megiddo has been the site of so many battles throughout history. In a land—and a world—that still struggles with so much conflict, we pray for peace.