March 19, 2010

A Day in the Decapolis

Shabat Shalom! It's Friday here, which means that this evening begins the Shabat, or Sabbath.

Today we began our day at Mt. Gilboa. We read the story of King Saul going up against the Philistines and his lack of faith in going to see a medium in Endor. (on the next mountain over) We learned about what it means to inquire of the Lord rather than seek wisdom elsewhere. We hiked down to the stream below where it is believed that Gideon led the army against the Philistines, and where God dwindled his troops down from 22,000 to just 300 so the glory could only be given to God for the victory.

After Gilboa, we took a quick trip east to Beth-Shean - a Decapolis city on the west side of the Jordan. There we were confronted with the dilemma of how you offer the Gospel to someone who lives in such luxury that they see no need for it.

Then, after lunch, we visited Susita, another Decaplios city, close to where Jesus cast Legion into a herd of pigs. We found resolution to the question posed at Beth-Shean, concluding that the blood of Jesus and our testimony are the most effective things we have to offer the world.

We finished our day at the mighty Jordan river to reflect on our trip thus far, have a time of prayer & repentance, and baptize 4 people in our group!

That wraps up our time in the Galilee. Tomorrow we visit Megiddo, Mt. Carmel & Caesarea before heading up to Jerusalem!

On to the pictures!

1. At the top of Mt. Gilboa. 2. Marty teaching in Beth-Shean in the ancient lavitory. :) 3. Walking down the Cardo in Beth-Shean. 4. Atop Susita. 5. Hiking down from Susita. 6. Matt teaching at the Jordan River. 7. Matt's baptism. 8. Jason's baptism. 9. Singing hymns and saying the Sh'ma at the Jordan River.


  1. Scott and Denise DalrympleMarch 19, 2010 at 3:48 PM

    Please tell Matt D. that we love him so much and are so very proud of him! You guys all stay safe and know that you are in our prayers every day!
    Dalrymple Family

  2. It was a very emotional moment for me when I saw Jason's picture with Matt in the Jordan river. Jason and I spoke about this moment prior to his leaving on the trip. I wish I could have been standing on the riverside and witness this but I am content in knowing he was with loved ones who stood in my place.

    I am so proud of you Jase - Love you Love you Mom.

  3. Pine Cove staff praying for all of you guys every day. Can't wait to see what tomorrow brings!

  4. Susan and Ken EvelandMarch 19, 2010 at 5:05 PM

    going up to the HOUSE!

  5. Love you all - what a joyous day for you. We are all in Tyler - everything ok - Heidi is a doll and we are loving every minute with her. When we got here, all she wanted to do was be "outside." Then she said, "Daddy, where Daddy go?" A little later by the to-be-garden, she said, "Mama?" No crying or worry or anything, just stating it. Tonight when we were reading the Nana and Pops book, she said, "Mommy, that's Mommy." All is good and we love and miss you. Give our love to Jodie.

  6. Each day brings your journey more to life for us. It must be a surreal experience! p.s since I commented on the Spring weather yesterday I wanted you all to know its winter again, cold front and rain came through its 39 degrees now....... Praying for you and hope you have great experiences each day. Love, Pat, Carol & Hunter

  7. Your daily updates are so inspiring. Our prayers are continually with all of you and we can't wait to listen to your stories of this great adventure. Happy Birthday (1 day early) Michael. We love you, Mom & Dad