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Posts Tagged ‘Going to Israel’

Why go to Israel?

Every time I go back to Israel, I get comments and questions, e.g. Is it safe? Aren’t you afraid? Why would you want to go to Israel? The questions are legitimate. Israel is situated in an area of the world in which there always seems to be a conflict occurring or at least one brewing. It has been that way since the Israelites came into the land more than 3,000 years ago. But I digress.

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Going to Israel is essential, in my opinion, to knowing God better and more experientially. It is not a substitute for daily study of the scriptures, but rather it enhances and enriches the devotional life of the student of the Word. This is true whether you are a Jew or a Christian–Evangelical or Catholic. Coming to the land where most of the events in your Bible took place changes how you see God, how you experience Him. For the Christian it is also important in coming to a better understanding of the Jews, their customs, their culture and their faith.

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In Israel, it is possible to stand where Jesus stood–on the Southern Steps of the Temple mount or perhaps in the synagogue in Magdala. One can see where Elijah challenged the prophets of Baal on Mt. Carmel or over look the valley where David took on Goliath or visit the Pool of Bethesda where Jesus healed the lame man. So much of the history of God’s people can be anchored to physical geography of the land of Israel, i.e. the feasts, the worship, the battles, the births, and even the deaths.

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But the most significant thing about the land of Israel of me is the close presence of God. God hovers over Jerusalem. Despite the religious diversity, the tension, the rituals, the shrines, and all manner of religiosity, God set His name upon and made promises about Jerusalem. He cannot lie, and so the land emanates the fragrance of God. That is what draws me back–and the chance to learn even more about Him and His people, and the chance to draw ever closer to Him.

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For future tours to Israel, check out the Rooted in His Word at RootedinHisWord.org.

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