Israel Trip: Photoblog of the Sea of Galilee/Lake Kinneret


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This lake, of heavy historic significance, is known by many names. Israelis I spoke with in Tel Aviv referred to it as Yam Kinneret. In the Bible, it is also called the Lake of Gennesaret, the Sea of Galilee, or the Sea of Tiberias. There are many names for it, but just one body of water.

Looking over the ruins of ancient Capernaum to the Sea of Galilee

Israel Photo Tour: Sea of Galilee/ Lake Kinneret/ Sea of Tiberias

The Basics

The Sea of Galilee is 13 miles long and 8 miles wide. (I know. It’s probably smaller than you thought!)

This is where Jesus walked on the water!!!

This region around the Sea of Galilee is referenced constantly throughout the gospels because this was the primary stomping grounds of Jesus and his disciples. The area around this lake was called Galilee, and ALL of the disciples were from this region, except one.

Want to guess which one?

Judas Iscariot. Yep. As in Judas the ultimate betrayer.

 

It is a beautiful, well-tended shore, the perfect spot for tourists like us to take photos.

The lake is breathtakingly beautiful and had a nice breeze coming off of it. Alan and I stood by it in awe. We watched two jet skis zipping by, and I felt happy to see that this body of water is still a relevant place where people can come and enjoy and remember.

 

Want to see a couple of places where this place is mentioned in the Bible?

One day as Jesus was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret,a the people were crowding around him and listening to the word of God. 2He saw at the water’s edge two boats, left there by the fishermen, who were washing their nets. 3He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little from shore. Then he sat down and taught the people from the boat.     Luke 5:1-3

I stood there on the shore, trying to picture where those boats might have sat while Jesus taught.

I’ve always loved how the Bible says that people were crowding around him to hear what he had to say. People flocked to Jesus because of his compassion, mercy, knowledge, and authority, as well as his miracles. They were drawn to him because he was w-o-n-d-e-r-f-u-l.

 

I pictured this being a spot where they would park their boats and go through their catch of the day when they were fishing.

“When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.”

5Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.”

6When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break.7So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them, and they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink.

8When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at Jesus’ knees and said, “Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man!” 9For he and all his companions were astonished at the catch of fish they had taken,10and so were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, Simon’s partners.

Then Jesus said to Simon, “Don’t be afraid; from now on you will fish for people.” 11So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him.”

Luke 5: 4-11

 

The Bible was written while these people were still alive and could agree and disagree with each other’s accounts. I just love that. This is history.

Fishers of Men

Why were they fishing for men, you can’t help think…fishing for men. Salesmen fish for men. Ugh. They fish so hard. Door to door they fish. Go away, salesmen, I don’t want your vacuum cleaner, your cable service, or wait….yes, I do want your lawn fertilization service. Lawns are very important here….Ha!!

But Jesus wasn’t selling anything. He wasn’t gaining off the backs of anyone. If he needed to make money, he could work his stone carving (carpentry) business.

This wasn’t about money.

They were fishing for people to help, and not just spiritually. They went from town to town healing the sick, giving sight to the blind, and then they would give them hope of salvation. Who can listen to hope for your soul when your physical needs aren’t met?

We need to be more like Jesus, fishing for people to help.

That’s so hard for me. I know it sounds terrible, but I just don’t want to deal with people most of the time. I want to take care of my own family and my house and let the world handle its own problems. Who has time to get involved in the lives of others??? There’s always so much to do! I don’t even want to answer my phone.

But that’s not the life we’re called to.

Your family comes before the rest, yes. If we don’t take care of our own, that’s neglect. We need to be fishers of men too, though, fishing for people to help.

Everywhere we go, we should be fulfilling our calling to love and help others, fishing for men, in whichever way God has given you to do that.

 

Israel Photo Tour: Sea of Galilee/ Lake Kinneret/ Sea of Tiberias

Alan and me in front of the Sea of Galilee in Capernaum, close to St. Peter’s house

I hope you’ve enjoyed our Israel trip series. Jordan River is next!

Want to see what you may have missed? Here are a few other Israel articles with tons of photos:

Tel Aviv: Shopping

Jerusalem: The Via Dolorosa

Joppa–Home of Simon the Tanner and the port used by Jonah

 

Why Capernaum was Our Favorite City to Visit in Israel

Alan and me in Capernaum

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After we left Nazareth, we hopped back on our bus and rode through the ever-so-bumpy streets of Cana. You’ve heard of Cana, where Jesus turned the water into wine?

We didn’t actually stop in Cana. Another destination was on our minds: Capernaum and the Sea of Galilee!!!! Eeeeeee!!!! So excited!!!

That bus ride was so bumpy that my Fitbit credited me with climbing about 200 flights of stairs. Yeah. I earned so many badges. Hahaha! I tried to make it stop. The Fitbit would not listen.

 

Have you ever gone somewhere so incredible that you don’t even know how to begin to tell people about it?

» Read more

40 Nazareth Photos: Where Joseph, Mary, and Jesus lived

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The Church of the Annunciation



We have 4 posts left in this Israel series: Nazareth, Capernaum, the Sea of Galilee, and What to Wear When Touring Israel.

Today let’s see Nazareth!!

Most signage in Israel is in Hebrew, Arabic, and English, which we were thankful for.

Alan was able to join me for one last day of touring. We could not have been more excited to hop on that bus and head to Nazareth.

This part of the town where the churches are located was a largely Muslim area. There is another part of Nazareth where the Jews live.

My day was off to an uplifting start. Our first stop was a gift shop, where the store manager instructed his employee to give me a special discount for having such pretty blue eyes.

Yes, flattery does work on me. I thoroughly enjoyed the compliment, but I didn’t actually buy anything. I usually count my photos as my best souvenirs.

The Church of the Annunciation, also in Nazareth, had these beautiful murals of Mary with Jesus. Countries from all over the world each sent one.

from France

I don’t know which country this one was from, but I liked it.

Rather than attempt to remember which church was which, since we saw two right next to each other that day, I’m just going to call this all Nazareth.

Why was Nazareth important?

Nazareth is where Jesus lived with his parents after they returned from hiding from King Herod in Egypt.

It is also where Mary received the news that she would bear a son, the child of God, who would be called Emmanuel.

Nathanael said to him, “Can any good thing come out of Nazareth?” Philip said to him, “Come and see.”       John 1:46

Did you know that Jesus visited Nazareth twice in his ministry, and was unwelcome both times? In fact, once they tried to stone him there, but he got away.

 

from the United States

“And he went out from thence, and came into his own country; and his disciples followed him. 2And when the sabbath day was come, he began to teach in the synagogue: and many hearing him were astonished, saying, From whence hath this man these things? and what wisdom is this which is given unto him, that even such mighty works are wrought by his hands? 3Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James, and Joses, and of Juda, and Simon? and are not his sisters here with us?

 

And they were offended at him. 4But Jesus said unto them, A prophet is not without honour, but in his own country, and among his own kin, and in his own house. 5And he could there do no mighty work, save that he laid his hands upon a few sick folk, and healed them. 6And he marvelled because of their unbelief.”          ~Mark 6:1-6

The importance of the church of the Annunciation is that it is where Gabriel visited Mary.

“Now in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city in Galilee called Nazareth,”              Luke 1:26

where Gabriel appeared to Mary

art from Spain

That’s Nazareth behind me….and an attractive broody looking Latin man…Actually, he was from Texas. He looked that serious all day.

 

heading up the steep hill to see the sights, following behind our tour guide

Y’all, this area is extremely hilly, mountainous, and most of all BUMPY! My Fitbit gave me credit for like 200 flights of stairs. No, I didn’t climb anywhere near that many, but apparently if you ride on an extremely rough road at a slow enough speed, the Fitbit believes you are mountain climbing.

The mountain of the famous SERMON ON THE MOUNT!!!!! Squee!!!!!!

The Sermon on the Mount mountain wasn’t actually in Nazareth. We saw it during the van ride.

You can imagine my dismay when my camera couldn’t handle the strong Israeli outlets. My real camera was my photography tool of choice. I was extra careful to charge it before we left the hotel. The powerful outlet charged it super-fast, but it wasn’t actually charged.

My camera battery died as soon as we reached the churches at the top of the hill. This may sound overly dramatic, but I totally wanted to cry over the fact that the rest of these photos are iPhone quality, indoors. Sad, sad, sadness!!!

This artwork, from Japan, is the most valuable one in the place, made partially with pearls.

 

At each holy site, there were always written prayers and change thrown in there.

The church is built on top of the old village. People actually lived under ground back then to stay cool. This is believed to be the site of Joseph’s stone carving shop.

where Joseph worked

The green light gives it an eery quality, doesn’t it?

This is the modern, Jewish, section of Nazareth.

There are those beautiful bushes again! I saw these all over Israel, and I want one for my yard now.

 

We re-boarded our van and headed for Capernaum. Alan fell asleep, and I tried to sneak a picture, but he caught me.

 

Now he’s just being silly.

 

Sleep tight, Honey. That ride was so rough; I don’t know how anyone could sleep through it.

 

More Nazareth Photos:

I do not recall much more to tell you about these, but I this is what it looked like:

“And there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit; and he cried out, 24Saying, Let us alone; what have we to do with thee, thou Jesus of Nazareth? art thou come to destroy us? I know thee who thou art, the Holy One of God.

25And Jesus rebuked him, saying, Hold thy peace, and come out of him. 26And when the unclean spirit had torn him, and cried with a loud voice, he came out of him. 27And they were all amazed, insomuch that they questioned among themselves, saying, What thing is this? what new doctrine is this? for with authority commandeth he even the unclean spirits, and they do obey him. 28And immediately his fame spread abroad throughout all the region round about Galilee.

Mark 1:23-28

 

The next place we went was Capernaum, and y’all, it was our FAVORITE. The synagogue, referenced in the Bible, where Jesus taught and performed miracles, is still there. You can see it.

Yes, there’s a newer synagogue on top of it, which is so old, even it is from the 4th century AD, but they’ve excavated so that you can see the ruins of the entire town from the days of Jesus and his disciples.

Capernaum was the town that was the most spiritually moving to me, and I’m going to tell you all about it. Look for that post next week.

If you want to be sure to not miss it, comment below or send me a message, and I can tag you when I post it on Facebook, or you can also sign up to receive allll my posts, in my sidebar, but I do warn you that I post every week. Ha!!

 

 

Want to see more of my Israel trip? Here are a few of the other Israeli places I blogged about:

Jerusalem: Where Jesus was Crucified

Jerusalem: The Mount of Olives

Tel Aviv

Jaffa: One of the Oldest Seaports in the World

 

 

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