Post written by Mary McRae Fowler
My second post about the Holy Land is about one of my favorite cities in the world- Jerusalem! We spent a lot of time in Jerusalem during the two weeks that we were in Israel, and I still felt like there was even more I could have done with more time.
It was really awesome to be in such an important city. After reading through the Old Testament and understanding the importance of this city, it was amazing to be in the place where Jesus walked, did ministry, and eventually was crucified, buried, and rose again! The days we spent here were overwhelming- spiritually and mentally. I am so thankful for the time I spent in Jerusalem, and I cannot wait to go back!
Here are a few pictures from some of my favorite places in Jerusalem.
My favorite Bible story is in John 13, when Jesus shows us the importance of serving others by washing the feet of His disciples. This was the room that has been built over the original site of the Upper Room.
These are the steps that lead from the Kidron Valley (where the Garden of Gethsemane is) all the way to Upper Jerusalem (Caiaphas’s house, the Upper Room, the tomb of David). These steps are original- they were here during Jesus’s time, so these were the steps He walked down and up, especially on the night that He was arrested and taken to Caiaphas’s house. While these steps are blocked off now, there are a few at the top that we could walk on, so we actually walked where Jesus walked!
We spent time in Caiaphas’s house, where the first of Jesus’s three trials took place. This is the room that Jesus would have waited in at the beginning of the entire crucifixion process. Being in that room and thinking about the loneliness and solitude that Jesus felt was overwhelming, and really put into perspective the sacrifice that Jesus made for me.
This wall is the last remaining part of the Temple that was destroyed in AD 70. We spent some time here praying.
When it comes to where Jesus was crucified and buried, there are two possibilities- The Church of the Holy Sepulchre, and the Garden Tomb. We had the opportunity to go to both of them, and regardless of which one it is, both are empty because He has risen!! It was so cool to see both of these places. We had communion outside of the Garden Tomb, and it was a beautiful time of reflection.
We saw the city from the top of the Mount of Olives, and it was beautiful! One of our friends on the trip with us convinced us ride the camel, and it was so worth it!
Oh man, this was a rough one. We spent Sunday morning in the Garden of Gethsemane, where Joseph shared a message about how the weight of the world was on Jesus’s shoulders, and how the first drops of blood He shed for us were in that garden. We sang “How Deep the Father’s Love for Us” and let me tell you, I couldn’t stop the tears!! (Which is why my eyes are puffy in the above picture). It was incredible to be in that place.
We walked through a tunnel system that was made back in King Hezekiah’s day. There was a lot of water, and it was cold and dark, but it was so cool to walk through it!
I did a study last summer on Kelly Minter’s A Heart That Breaks, on the book of Nehemiah. I loved this study, and I got to see part of Nehemiah’s original wall!
Remember the story about Jesus being left at the temple when he was around 12 years old? Or all the times He taught people, both religious leaders and common people? Or the story about the day of Pentecost? These are the steps where these stories more than likely took place! The Teaching Steps. We are standing on one of the original steps. They are outside of the Temple Mount.
These are just a few of the many pictures that I have from our trip! Stay tuned for the next post about Bethlehem!
If you are interested in joining us on our next trip to the Holy Land, send me an email and let me know! We will be journeying to Greece in October 2020 on a Journeys of Paul trip. Contact me if you are interested! My email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.