Israel 2013

Intro and Day 1

Tel Aviv (Joppa, Jaffa, Yafo)




  1. Size and Location
    1. Israel is about 8,000 sq miles.  South Carolina is about 32,000 square miles.
    2. Israel – North to South – about 263 miles.  East to West at the widest point is 71 miles.
    3. Latitude/Longitude:


Columbia:  34º 00′ N, 81º 02′ W

Hilton Head Island: 32º 11′ N, 80º 44′ W

Pelham, Georgia 31º 7′ N


Masada: 31° 18′ N

Jerusalem:  31° 46′ N, 35° 12′ E

Nazareth: 32° 41′ N, 35° 18′ E

Tel Aviv: 32° 3′ N, 34° 46′ E


  1. Bordered by: Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, The Mediterranean Sea, the Dead Sea, the Gulf of Aqaba, and the Jordan River
  2. Population: Israel – about 8,000,000.  SC about 4,700,000
    1. Approx 6,000,000 are Jewish
    2. Arab primarily make the rest
  3. Theology of the Land
    1. Scripture is located in space and time.  Our faith is not simply abstract theology or philosophy.  You will stand in the places spoken of in the Scriptures. You will see artifacts that directly relate to the stories of Scripture.  Our faith is no myth.  2 Peter 1:16
      1. Greek mythology – Andromeda – chained to a rock as a sacrifice at Joppa.  To the Greeks a philosophical truth.  But not historical truth.  (Rembrandt painting)
      2. Our faith is grounded in historical truth.  Real people in real places.
    2. The land – a central theme in Scripture
      1. Promised to the patriarchs
      2. Conquered by Joshua
      3. Israel forsakes God there
      4. God drives Israel from the land
      5. God brings them back
      6. Christ is born there and lives there
      7. But, God’s presence and power is not limited to the land.  In Stephen’s speech in Acts 7 we are told of God’s power outside the land as God calls the Gentiles to be his children, too.
      8. Think on Mt 5:5; Rom 4:13; Gal 3:29
  4. Israel – a testing ground
    1. The north of Israel and the coastal areas receive rain and crops grow easily.  The south of Israel is desert and existence is a struggle.
    2. God places Israel on the map in a location that will be used to test her. In order that Israel might know who God is and in turn might know who she is too in her relation with the Lord.
      1. Dt 8:7-17 – the land is a testing ground.
      2. I Kings 4:25 – how do you live in prosperity?
  5.  Highways (Regions on the Run ROR p. 9)
    1. Israel is located along the major trade and military routes between Egypt to the south and Mesopotamia and Phoenicia to the North; to the East – the Persian Gulf and Babylon.
    2. Coastal Highway  North/South hwy  (From Egypt to Megiddo and to “a thousand cities”) ROR p. 14.
      1. Ex 37:25 – Joseph – to Egypt
      2. Joppa was not on the coastal hwy. but close to it.  The hwy in Biblical days stayed closer to the Shephelah and passed through Aphek where there were springs of water.
      3. Joseph and Mary with the young Christ would have traveled this hwy on the way back from Egypt. Mt 2:20-21
    3.  King’s Highway – North/South hwy in Transjordan (East of the Jordan River and Dead Sea) ROR 20
      1. Num 20:17; 21:22 – a major trade route – contentious; military rd designed to move troops;
      2. Dt 2:24-37 – God gives the territory of the Amorites along this hwy to Israel (see below)
      3. Isaiah 11:16 – Israel traveled this hwy from Egypt.
      4. Is 19:23 – one day… it will be a different kind of hwy.
    4. East/West from Transjordan to Israel (Heshbon, Rabbah) – You will cross this hwy when you go from the Sea of Galilee to the Dead Sea through the Jordan valley. ROR 20 A & B GEO 19
      1. Dt 1:5 – Moses goes over the covenant with Israel along this hwy.
      2. Dt 32:48; 34:1 – Mt Nebo and Pisgah are along this hwy – Moses leaves the hwy to climb Nebo and God shows him the promised land.
      3. Joshua 13:17 – The tribe of Reuben was given the Medeba Plateau, Heshbon… The highway that runs east/west through here is strategic hwy into Israel. ROR 20B
      4. Judges 11:19 – Under Moses Israel took the Arnon to the Jabbok (11:13).  In Jephthah’s day (Israel had possessed the land 300 years 11:26) the king of Ammon wanted the land back.  Jephthah makes a foolish vow and wins the battle against Ammon.  (11:32)
      5. 2 Samuel 11:1 – David’s sin with Bathsheba put the hwy that guarded entrance from this eastern highway at risk. (after his repentance and forgiveness – he takes the hwy – 11:29).
        1. Notice as you go from Bethshan (day 3) to Bethany beyond the Jordan that there is virtually no entrance into Israel from the East.  GEO 17
    5. The Conquerers Corridor – Beqaa Valley north of the Sea of Galilee. Hazor Hwy.
    6. ROR p.16  (Jer 31:21)– Israel told to remember and mark the hwy they were exiled on because God will bring them back along that same hwy.) Note various hwys on the maps.
    7. Judges 1:27-36 – various tribes fail to drive out the inhabitants of their land allotment.  The inhabitants of those lands lived along the highways and in the fertile areas.  Whoever controlled these areas controlled the wealth and power.
      1. Judges 1:34-35 – ROR p.24B
      2. Judges1:29 – ROR p.24B
      3. Look to the East while in Tel Aviv and you should see the hills.
  6. Terminology
    1. Tel – (or Tell) a mound of dirt or hill created in an area as a result of people living in an area and rebuilding on it.  Excavations reveal info from previous settlements.  – Tel Megiddo, Tel Aviv, Tel Yafo (Joppa), Tel Jerusalem…
    2. Shephelah – (ROR 17 B) foothills or lowland– the Judean foothills between Mt. Hebron and the coastal plain. Fertile. Sight of several biblical battles. (Josh 9:1, 10:40, Judges 1:9) A series of valleys cut into the Shephelah (Sorek Valley, Valley of Elah, Valley of Ajalon (Josh 10:11-14) -a main valley into Jerusalem.
    3. Wadi – a dry riverbed, valley – Wadi Ara connects the coastal plain with the Jezreel Valley. This wadi is also called the Megiddo Pass. (See also Num 21:12;NAS  34:5; Josh 15:4,47…NIV)
  7. Agriculture
    1. Coastal Plains – citrus, avocado, kiwi, guavas, mangos, grapes
    2. One of the world leaders in exports of oranges, grapefruits, tangerines.  Joffa orange.  Also exports flowers.
    3. Tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, zucchini, melons
    4. Grapes – wine production – Galilee, Judean Hills (Ben Ami)
  8. Day One – Tel Aviv (hill of spring or grain – symbolizing renewal) Eze 3:15
    1. 1948 – Israel declared independence
    2. Tel Aviv is recognized as capital by UN
    3. 2nd largest city by population in Israel (410,000) in approx 20 sq miles. (City of Columbia approx 132,000 in 135 sq miles.)
    4. Tel Aviv grew up around the port of Joppa (Jaffa, Yafo)  Joppa.  Joppa means “beauty” in Hebrew.
    5. Tel Aviv is located on the Mediterranean Sea.  And Joppa sits about 100 ft above the sea giving it a great view of the land and the sea.  There is a reef that runs parallel to the coast.  There was some protection for sailors inside the reef in ancient days.
      1. Ancient Egypt used it as a port to bring in war supplies and help guard the Joppa-Aphek-Gezer triangle.  (ROR 17 B)
      2. Sennacherib – ANET p. 199 on his way to Jerusalem takes Joppa. (Outside historical confirmations)
    6. Tel Aviv is in the Gush Dan region of the country – where approx 42% of the people of Israel live.  The cultural and entertainment center.
      1. Called Dan Gush because it is the area allotted to Dan in the OT.
      2. In the OT Dan was not able to drive out the Philistines.
      3. A fertile area of the country. An area that the Amorites and Canaanites would fight to keep (Judges 1:34-35; Num 13:29)
      4.  Dan ending up living in the hill country. (Joshua 19:40-48; Judges 1:34) and then later moving to the North (Judges 18:1,27-31)
      5. When the Bible refers to the land “from Dan to Beersheba” it is speaking of the land Dan occupied in the North.
  9. Joppa – history, and the Scriptures (ROR p. 17 B & 18) (GEO 16)
    1. Joppa is one of the world’s oldest ports.
      1. Joppa gets its name from Japeth. (Gen 9:27, 10:2-5.)
      2. Legend is that Thutmois III of Egypt (1504 BC to 1426 BC) (more on him when at Megiddo) took Joppa by putting 200 of his soldiers in sacks and surrendering to Joppa with the 200 sacks as tribute.  When Joppa opened the gate the soldiers came from the sacks and took the city.
      3. Joshua 19:46 – It is part of the inheritance of Dan.
      4. Judges 1:35 –  Dan was not able to take the area.
      5. Joppa would have been a part of the Philistine territory in the OT.  (ROR 17B – From Gaza to Yarkon River) Josh 13:2-4
      6. I Sam 4 – Israel camps at Ebenezer and battles the Philistines at Aphek (just NE of Joppa)
      7. I Sam 5 – At Ebenezer the ark is captured and taken to Ashdod (just south of Joppa) and sent to Ekron. (GEO 18)
        1. I Kings 9:15 – Solomon used forced labor to build Megiddo (day 2) and Gezer (part of the Joppa-Aphek-Gezer triangle (ROR 17 B) (GEO 16)).  Gezer means “cut off”.  If you control Gezer you “cut off” invaders from the hill country and the coastal plain.
        2. 2 Chron 2:16– the king of Tyre cuts timber from Lebanon and floats it down to the port at Joppa then to be delivered to Jerusalem to build the temple.
        3. Jonah the prophet (who lived in Gath-hepher just north of Nazareth (2 K 14:25) (ROR p 14) fled to Joppa instead of calling Nineveh to repent.
        4. Ezra 3:7 – as in Solomon’s day logs came from Lebanon through Joppa to rebuild the temple.
        5. Isaiah 11:10-11 – (Joel 3:2,6) – in the Messianic age the nations will seek Christ and God will gather his remnant Jews from everywhere in the world – including the coastlands of the sea (RSV).
        6. Acts – Peter
        7. 9:36-43 – Dorcas was from Joppa.  Peter raised her from the dead and stayed with Simon the tanner.  The gospel spreads to Gentiles.
        8. 10:8 – Cornelius sends servants to Joppa to get Peter.
          1. Acts 11:5 – Peter sees the vision of the great sheet
    2. Joppa and its place in the gospel.  Joppa is a key city when it comes to the gospel.  Look over the above passages and notice how many deal with the spread of gospel.

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Israel 2014

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