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A Tour Like No Other

March 3, 2017 – March 14, 2017

Optional Extension: March 14, 2017 – March 17, 2017


This tour is especially designed by your hosts to give you an incredibly full Holy Land experience by including sites literally from Dan to Beersheba. The phrase, “from Dan to Beersheba” became a way to specify the entire land of Israel by writers of Scripture (Judges 20:1; I Samuel 3:20; II Samuel 3:10, 17:11, 24:2, 15; & I Kings 5:5). The tour will focus primarily on three main areas; the Galilee, Jerusalem, and the wilderness regions.

Participants will visit sites associated with the Patriarchal narratives as well as sites associated with the formative years of Christianity, but all along the way you will be exposed to the modern miracle of the State of Israel. This tour will place special emphasis on the role of “Israel” – past, present and future, by uniquely connecting history with prophecy and the present reality with the ancient past. It is about uniting people with the land and thereby with the roots of their faith. For those interested primarily in the historicity and archaeological evidence for the biblical accounts, the tour will also provide a “you are there” survey of many of the sites well-known from the Bible from an archaeological and evidential perspective. There is no effective substitute for actually seeing the sites in person.

On this tour, the Bible will be our guide. The Scriptures will take on new meaning as we take you on an exploration of the land that God calls His own (Leviticus 25:23) – a land that His eyes are on always (Deuteronomy 11:12). As we walk the time worn streets and surrounding hills and valleys, the Bible will come to life before your very eyes. You will walk where prophets, kings and messiahs walked and you will forever be changed as a result.

The tour will transform the way you read and understand the Bible. Throughout the tour, we will share the stories that you know well from the texts, in the very places where the events actually took place. (We are limiting the number of registrants to 45, one busload, allowing more time and opportunity to interact).

Anyone interested in biblical history and literature will find this tour refreshing and educational from beginning to end. We have no expectations regarding belief systems, politics, or faith orientations. All that is required to go on this tour is a strong orientation toward learning more about the Bible and its history, and the archaeological basis underpinning the rationale used by many archaeologists for using the biblical narrative as one means of informing the research on the ancient people and events of the Levant.


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Tour Overview – created by Trip Leader, Ross Nichols


 

 

Highlights

  • Watch the sunset from the top of Mount of Olives for a breathtaking view of the Temple Mount
  • Get to the closest point one can get to the Ancient Holy of Holies (sealed off entrance to “The Cave”)
  • Visit the historic areas of Jerusalem (Temple Mount, Western Wall Tunnels, Christian Quarter of the Old City, City of David, Hezekiah’s Tunnel & more)
  • Listen to Dr. Tabor discuss his ongoing research on the archaeologyof Jerusalem as it relates to the origins of Christianity and late 2nd Temple Judaism
  • Visit the traditional sites of the Upper Room and King David’s Tomb along with a special viewing of the Mount Zion archeology dig site and a guided tour of the Wohl Archaeology Museum.
  • Visit Samuel’s Tomb, the city built by Herod the Great, Mount Carmel, along with a stop to Nazareth Village (a re-creation of Jesus’ hometown)
  • Travel to the borders near Syria and Lebanon and then watch the sunset from the Galilee Boat
  • See ancient ruins, visit the home of Mary Magdelene, and travel to Capernaum where Jesus moved his family
  • Climb Prayer Mountain to watch the sunrise and learn more about the 7 Periods of Biblical History at Tamar
  • Hike the “snake path” up the side of Masada or choose to take the cable car to the top
  • Float in the waters of the Dead Sea and tour the Israel Museum
  • Extension Option: Visit Towel of David Museum, the Burnt House, Davidson Center, Temple Institute, and more


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Volunteer Experience (Optional)

Everyone who registers for this trip is invited to extend his or her tour experience and become a “Volunteer” at Tamar after the tour. This low cost experience is available for up to a maximum of 90 days. Long term volunteers pay only $20 a day for board and room and short term volunteers, who stay less than 30 days, pay $30 a day. Volunteers are needed in various areas such as, horticulture, cooking, housekeeping, mechanical, carpentry, and beautifying the Park.

Volunteering is a unique and special way to bless the Israeli people and the Land, while being able to experience 5,000 years of history. Presenting this history, and how it relates to our Creator, is the reason Blossoming Rose continues to develop Biblical Tamar Park. We are very thankful for all our volunteers and donations that help make this all possible.

Tour Guides & Hosts


Our tours are led by knowledgeable tour guides and hosts and it’s just one of the many benefits that makes our Israel Tours exceptional. Each tour is a unique experience and all of our tours include a visit to Biblical Tamar Park and have the option to extend your stay as a volunteer.

ross nichols roots of faith tour

Ross Nichols

Tour Leader


Ross Nichols is a vice-president and an ordained minister and teacher for United Israel World Union. He directs the United Israel Center South in St. Francisville, Louisiana. Each Sabbath, people from all over the world join in for his teachings over our United Israel YouTube channel, inspiring people to live a more authentically biblical
lifestyle. Ross is a student and teacher of biblical Hebrew, is knowledgeable about the
historical Jesus and late 2nd Temple Judaism, and has spent many years seeking to
understand and interpret earliest Christianity from its original and thoroughly Hebraic
perspective.


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Dr. James Tabor

Tour Guide


Author of many books including the New York Times bestseller The Jesus Dynasty, Dr. James Tabor has his Ph.D. in Christian Origins and Ancient Judaism. He has combined his work on ancient texts with extensive field work in archaeology in Israel and Jordan, including work at Qumran, Sepphoris, Masada, Mt. Zion, Talpiot tombs and more.


dr dewayne coxon

Dr. Dewayne Coxon

Tour Facilitator


Dr. DeWayne Coxon will facilitate the logistics of the tour. He has planned and guided tours in Israel since the early 1980s and has travelled to Israel over 150 times since 1965. Dr. Coxon is the President of Blossoming Rose and author of the book, Living Prophecies: A Crumbling Wall between Christians and Jews.


A Tour Like No Other Tour Itinerary

Day 1 – 03/03/2017


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USA to Israel

We will begin our journey as we depart from our home city and fly to Israel. (Everyone should be at the airport three hours prior to the flight.) Meals will be served during our flight.

Day 2 – 03/04/2017


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Jerusalem, Old City, Western Wall

We will land in Tel Aviv, Israel early Saturday afternoon and take the bus to Jerusalem. As a special welcome to the Holy City, and time permitting, we will drive to the top of the Mount of Olives for a breathtaking view of the Temple Mount at sunset. For some, this arrival day will be the first time to lay eyes on the place described in the Bible as one that God’s eyes and heart are on all the days (I Kings 9:3). We will then drive to our hotel where we will settle into our rooms. We will meet for a nice meal in the dining facility at the hotel. After a delicious dinner, we will take a nice leisurely stroll into the Old City of Jerusalem through the Jaffa gate and then walk to the Western Wall (Kotel) just as the city comes to life as the Sabbath ends, or you can remain at the hotel and visit with Dr. Tabor and Dr. Coxon in the lounge.

Day 3 – 03/05/2017


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Temple Mount, Western Wall Tunnels, Church of the Holy Sepulcher, Dity of David, Dr. Tabor Lecture & more

We will begin our day with a tour of the Temple Mount. Here we will discuss the modern reality of the site presently administered by Jordan as well as the past and future Temples. We will then tour the Western Wall Tunnels. The exposed portion of the Western Wall is approximately 200 feet long; the tunnel provides access to an additional 1,591 ft. of ancient wall. Almost 150 ft. into the tunnel we will see a sealed off entrance to a small synagogue known as “The Cave.” This is believed to be the closest point one can get to the Ancient Holy of Holies. After our tour of the Western Wall Tunnels we will take a stroll through the Christian Quarter of the Old City, visiting traditional Christian pilgrimage sites such as the Via Dolorosa and the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. We will tour the City of David where those who wish can wade through the flowing waters of Hezekiah’s tunnel. We may have some time before dinner to shop in the Old City. We will then return to the hotel for dinner, after which we will meet in the Conference room to listen to Dr. Tabor discuss his ongoing research on the archaeology of Jerusalem as it relates to the origins of Christianity and late 2nd Temple Judaism.

 

Day 4


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Mount of Olives, Garden of Gethsemane, Mt. Zion Dig, Upper Room & More

We will begin our day with a bus ride to the Mount of Olives. From this vantage point will look towards the west and view the Temple Mount. We will walk down the Mount of Olives visiting several places of interest along the way including Dominus Flevit, the Garden of Gethsemane, and the Church of All Nations. Our walk will take us down into the Kidron Valley and then up to Mount Zion where Dr. Tabor will guide us through the traditional sites of the Upper Room and King David’s Tomb, and then on a special viewing of the Mount Zion archeology dig site, and a guided tour of the Wohl Archaeology Museum. The Wohl Museum of Archaeology
exhibits, among other things, the remains of the opulent homes of Jerusalem’s aristocratic families of the late Second Temple period. Dr. Tabor will share his research showing where the true site of the trial of Jesus before Pilate took place. We will end near the superb Mamilla Mall and Jaffa Gate where free time will be given before dinner for shopping. We will have a relaxing dinner and a good night’s rest before our journey towards the Galilee.

Day 5


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Samuel’s Tomb, Nazareth Village, Mount Carmel, Sea of Galilee, Tiberias & more

On this day we will begin with a stop at the traditional site of Samuel’s Tomb and then we will travel to Caesarea Maritima, the city built by Herod the great (25 – 13 BCE). Named to flatter Caesar, this site is situated on the Mediterranean Coast between Tel Aviv and Haifa. We will discuss Paul’s imprisonment here before moving on to Rome to make his ‘appeal to Caesar.’ From here we will drive past Megiddo of Armageddon fame to Mount Carmel where, according to the Bible (I Kings 18), Elijah challenged 450 prophets of Baal. From atop our restaurant we will be able to view the Jezreel Valley. After lunch we will begin our journey towards Tiberias stopping at Nazareth Village, described as a “carefully researched re-creation of Jesus hometown,” providing us with a glimpse of life in the time of Jesus. We will also visit Gath-Kepher, the home of the prophet Jonah where we will learn about the sign of the prophet Jonah. We will continue towards Tiberias, founded sometime around 20 CE by Herod Antipas, son of Herod the Great, who made it the capital of his realm in Galilee. We will check into our rooms in the Leonardo Hotel in Tiberias on the shore of the Sea of Galilee, where we will stay for the Galilean portion of our tour. There will be time for shopping and plenty of opportunity to take in the beauty of the Galilee.

Day 6


sunset sea of galilee tour
Caesarea Philippi, Tel Dan, Golan Heights, Druze Village, boat ride on Sea of Galilee

We begin our tour of the Galilee with a stop at Caesarea Phillipi, mentioned in the synoptic gospels as the place where Jesus ask his disciples, “Who do men say that I am?” From here we can see the foot of Mount Hermon and discuss the messianic significance of this place (Psalm 133). Next we will visit the site of Tel Dan, where according to II Kings 10:29 and II Chronicles 13:8, Jeroboam led the northern kingdom of Israel away from the true faith. We then travel to up into the Golan to Katzrine, the Jewish provincial capital and on to the borders of Syria and Lebanon. We will go to Gennesaret and see a first Century boat found on the shores of Galilee in 1986 and then finish the day with a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee where we will watch the sun set. We will spend the night in Tiberias.

 

Day 7


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Arbel Cliffs, Synagogue ruins, Magdala, Mount of Beatitudes, Capernaum

We begin our day with a breathtaking view of the Sea of Galilee from the Arbel cliffs. Here, we will also see the ruins of an ancient synagogue of Arbel We then travel to Magdala, the home of Mary Magdelene. We will travel from here to the traditional site of the Mount of the Beatitudes where we will discuss some of Jesus’ most cherished, and best known teachings. Finally we will travel to Capernaum where Jesus made his HQ and moved his family. Here we will also tour a third Century synagogue, built upon the visible remains of a first century synagogue. As we travel around the Sea of Galilee you will see sites whose names are associated with the Christian New Testament. We will then spend our last night in Tiberias.

Day 8


day 8 roots of faith tour
Jericho, Jordan River, Qumran, Biblical Tamar Park

After our tour of the Galilee, we will begin our journey to the south, traveling along the Jordan River. We will take some time to visit the ancient ruins of Jericho where “the walls came tumbling down.” We will visit Qumran, where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered. Here Dr. Tabor will show us cisterns, a cemetery, ruins of a dining facility and of course the famous caves where nearly 900 ancient scrolls were discovered. We will continue on to the southern Biblical border of Israel, to Tamar (Ez. 47-48) and move into our rooms at Biblical Tamar Park. The Park Supervisor and volunteer workers will welcome us with an American style Kosher meal in the dining room. After dinner we will relax and visit together before an open fire in the Sukkah next to the dining room. This is a special place that will allow us to experience the wilderness regions of Israel.

Day 9


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Sabbath Experience at Tamar, Prayer Mountain, Torah Study

We awaken to a peaceful Sabbath, feeling the stillness of the desert as the sun rises over the Jordanian mountains. Those who want to rise early, will climb “Prayer Mountain” and watch the sun rise. We will have a Shabbat morning service after breakfast, read the parsha and engage in a dialogue session for those who wish to participate. After lunch we will visit Mt. Hor and some related sites to the Torah readings. After dinner, Dr. DeWayne Coxon will lead us on a walk into the desert to the gravesite of Simha Pearlmutter, and share stories of this desert rabbi who founded Kibbutz Ir Obot, now renamed Biblical Tamar Park. Everyone will be welcome to sit around the sukkah fire before going to our rooms.

 

Day 10


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Biblical Tamar Tour, Masada, Dead Sea

We will begin our day with a tour of Biblical Tamar. Next we will board our bus and go to visit the ancient fortress of Masada, known today as the site where 960 revolutionary Jewish holdouts died rather than surrender to the Romans. Some will choose to run or hike the famed “snake path” up the side of Masada, while others will take the cable car to the top. We will learn that Masada was originally built by the Maccabees, and fortified by Herod the Great between 37-31 BCE as a refuge for himself in the event of a revolt. From the top of Masada you will be able to look down upon the ruins of Roman encampments. We will visit an ancient synagogue without walls” atop Masada. We will then stop at a public beach along the Dead Sea where we will be able to shop and float in waters of the Dead Sea, after which we will go back to Tamar for dinner and then pack for our return home tomorrow.

Day 11


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Ein Gedi, Masada, Dead Sea and Biblical Tamar Park

We will depart Biblical Tamar Park and journey back to Jerusalem for some final shopping, and to take in, once again the ambiance of the Holy City. Alternatively, for those who elect, we will tour the Israel Museum, the largest cultural institution in Israel, among the world’s leading art and archaeology museums. At 6:30 PM, we will catch our bus back to the airport for our flights back home.

Day 12


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Flight Home

Catching connecting flights back home.

Extension


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Old City, Museums, Shopping

For those who wish to spend additional time in and around Jerusalem, we will offer an extension for the tour. Those who elect the extension package will spend 3 nights at the Gloria Hotel, located inside the Old City, right inside the Jaffa Gate. Here you will be within walking distance of museums that were not included in the tour. We will visit the Towel of David Museum, the Burnt House, Davidson Center, and the Temple Institute. The Davidson Center and the Jerusalem Archaeological Park, considered Israel’s most important antiquity site, gives the visitor an expanded view of archaeological remains spanning 5,000 years of Jerusalem history. There will also be time to visit other sites of interest or simply spend some time shopping in the many shops in and around the Old City. Tour hosts will assist in coordinating excursions. More information is available upon request.

Tour Dates:

March 3, 2017 – March 14, 2017
March 3, 2017 – March 17, 2017 (extension)

Price:

$2,350 (airfare not included)

Tours Include:

Hotels: Breakfast & Dinner
All meals at Tamar
National Park Pass
All listed sites that we visit
Bus transfer to and from Ben Gurion Airport

Not Included:

Lunches
Flight insurance