The Sea of Galilee (Kinneret): Part I…

Tiberias…

Tiberias is an ancient city located on the western shore of the Sea of Galilee, (Kinneret). During the warmer weather it is a popular place to visit with lots to see and do including a water park, restaurants and of course the historic ruins in the area.

Tiberias is the city where Eileen made the wrong turn and luckily for me led us to the Hotel Genossar.

Along the way, at my insistence, we stopped to visit the Tomb of Rachel, the wife of Rabbi Akiva. Rabbi Akiva, who is considered as one of the great Jewish sages, was born a shepherd, who with the urging of his wife Rachel went on to study Torah and become the spiritual teacher and leader to over 24,ooo  people. The story is that Rachel married Rabbi Akiva against her father’s wishes and she supported him for many years while he studied Torah. Rachel’s Tomb is a spiritual place where Jews from all over the world come to worship.

Ginosar Inn Country Lodging…

While at the Kinneret we stayed at the ‘Country Inn’ on the Kibbutz Ginosar, which surprising to the both of us, has a museum on the property which has on display the 2000 year-old Sea of Galilee Boat referred to as the  ‘Jesus Boat’. The boat was discovered by fishermen in 1986 after a drought left the river bottom exposed and revealing  the boat on the seas muddy bottom. The boat dates back to the time when Jesus was living in the area and often sailed on the Galilee. While there is no proof that Jesus actually sailed on this boat it is historically important for both Jews and Christians alike.

Great care was taken to lift and bring the fragile boat ashore. archaeologists wrapped the boat in special materials to preserve it. Look carefully at the photo in the image below to get a better idea as to how it was raised.

Capharnaum…

Capharnaum was a   fishing village inhabited from mid 2nd century BC to 11th century AD. It is located on the northwestern shore of the Sea of Galilee. It is known as “The Home of Jesus”. There are many new testament references to his living here. “He left Nazareth and went to live in Capharnaum by the sea.  (Gospel of Matthew 4-13).

Olive oil press

Recent excavations revealed that there were two synagogues in the village: the more recent was made of limestone and was built on top of the older, which was made of local black basalt. Only the foundation walls, some , and the cobblestone floor remain of the earlier structure.

A church near Capharnaum is said to be the home of Saint Peter. When  Jesus left Nazareth, he settled in Capharnaum where he chose his first four disciples, James, John, Peter and Andrew.

The Church of the 12 Apostles…

Church of the 12 Apostles belongs to the Greek-Orthodox branch. It is located in the north-eastern part of Capharnaum and is where Jesus picked the twelve apostles.  The church is very impressive and stands out in the terrain; you can even spot it from really far away with its bright white walls and pink domes.

The Apostle church was built in 1931 on the remains of Capharnaum. It is designed in a Greek fashion. The inside of the Apostle church is just as impressive as the outside of the church…

…and  includes mural motifs from the New Testament.

to be continued…

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