“You will be comforted … in Jerusalem” (Isaiah 66:13)

Physical and spiritual renewal in the land of

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29 Sep 2012


Blessed are the poor in spirit, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn, For they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, For they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, For they shall be filled.
Blessed are the merciful, For they shall obtain mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart, For they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers, For they shall be called sons of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
           
Matthew 5:3-10

Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount along the Sea of Galilee gives us a first glimpse of the message of righteousness and salvation that He uncompromisingly preached and instilled into His disciples. Today’s visit to the Mount of Beatitudes, where Christ proclaimed these proverbs was an opportunity to evaluate and refocus our hearts. Am I living the way that Christ has commanded? That is a question that I must ask myself every day.  Following Christ is hard work! It is much easier and fun to sin, but what is truly the greater cost?

Sea of Galilee

Yesterday on the bus ride many of the tour members told their testimonies and path to Israel. We all have come to the Holy Land for our own reasons, but the underlying reason is that God has called us here to a place that will build our faith even stronger. Verse 4 of the Beatitudes is especially relevant in my life currently. It touches on the theme of mourning and comfort which is ultimately how God directed me to this land. Isaiah 66:13 states “As one whom his mother comforts, so I will comfort you; And you will be comforted in Jerusalem.” It was this verse that spoke to my heart at a time of deep sadness. In the time I have been in Israel I have felt a spiritual and physical renewal come upon me. He promised me comfort and I have found so much more. Faith changes our lives!

Sunrise over Galilee

The blessings of Israel are numerous. Driving throughout the Galilee one sees a land that is fertile and provides the people and the world with some of the best produce in the world. The Sea of Galilee itself provides a bounty of fish. And the hillsides are seem as if they are paintings, created with perfect brushstrokes, detailing cypress trees and splashes of color for the beautiful.

  bougainvillea  

I could continue to come to this land just for the scenic views and the wonderful food throughout the country, but it is the opportunity to meet and touch God that will forever draw me back to Israel. I hope you would consider taking an opportunity to experience Israel and be in the land where our Savior came into this world for our salvation.

   ICEJ Feast of Tabernacles
 

Jeremy Carney is guest blogging for the ICEJ as a member of this year's tour to the Feast of Tabernacles.  Contact us about joining us for next year's Feast! »