If you’ve been a reader of my blog or ever attended one of my Bible classes or speaking engagements, you know that I believe context is essential to studying and understanding the Bible.
The Bible is full of geographical, cultural, social, political, and historical contexts. On top of that, it contains different literary styles and genres. Most of this is foreign to our “Western” view of the world. At a minimum, it can limit how we read and understand the Biblical story. At its worst, it can cause us to miss the intended message and application for our lives.
The Hebrew language has a beautiful word: yadaʿ (יָדַע). In English, this gets translated as “to know.” As with most Hebrew words, its meaning is far richer than a single word in English can easily communicate. In Hebrew, yada’ means to have intimate familiarity with something–to know it at its deepest level, to understand its essence, its very being. So much so that it’s not surprising that this same Hebrew word also means “to have sex.”
My goal is to help us yadaʿ the Land of the Bible—to understand its essence with all of our senses, in its original context—so that we can better understand the message of the Bible.
The itineraries in the links below may seem sparse. That is by design. Part of helping us yadaʿ the Land will be in how we engage with each site. If you know where we are going ahead of time, your mind already begins to prepare you via your own biases and preconceptions. My goal is to strip away as much of that as possible so that God’s Word speaks more powerfully into you as we bring the Land and the Text together. I’ve experienced the Land both knowing in advance and not knowing, and I can assure you it is far more meaningful when you don’t know what’s coming next. Will we visit the famous sites? Yes–and we will even visit a few less-traveled ones.
I partner with GTI Tours for these trips. GTI does an excellent job of controlling the costs while providing an all-inclusive, first-class experience. Since 1992 they have facilitated more than 500 tours to Israel, Turkey, Greece, Jordan, and Egypt. Few companies have GTI’s expertise when it comes to travel to Israel.
If you have never been to Israel, I can guarantee it will forever change how you read and understand the Bible. I hope you will join me!
Israel: July 2–14, 2023
Registration Now Open!
If you are interested in learning more about this trip, we have prepared a brochure and a more detailed information packet. If you have further questions, feel free to contact me.
I am excited to lead this trip and share my love for the land and the Bible with you. My prayer is that it will impact you as much as it has me.