Calvary Rathdrum Israel Study Tour with Pastor Cory Kirkham
With Pastor Cory Kirkham
From $3,839 per person
September 9-18, 2019
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Pastor Cory Kirkham
Join this 10-day Bible study tour of Israel! This trip includes a complete, detailed tour of the most impressive sights of the Holy Land. Your Pastor has thought of everything! You are staying primarily in smaller, boutique hotels in perfect locations. Almost every meal except two lunches is included. You have top guides with you throughout your journey and one of your guides includes Eli Shukron, the highly acclaimed Jerusalem archaeologist, who will join you on the day that you are at the City of David. Your tour also includes several of the country’s top museums: the Israel Museum and its adjoining Shrine of the Book, and Vad Yashem, which is the Holocaust Museum.
This tour is so complete that it would be difficult to try to recreate it. Our tour includes round-trip airfare from Spokane or Seattle with an air discount if originating in San Francisco, Los Angeles or San Diego. All private buses, all meals except two lunches, all entrance fees, transfers, taxes and fees are also included. The price is $3,839 per person, based on two people sharing a room. Tips will be pre-collected in advance and are $148 per person. If you are traveling alone, you have two choices: you can pay a single supplement of $829 and have a private room or we can assist in finding a roommate for you. We have had excellent results with this and have found that you may very well make a life-long friend! To join the tour, a deposit of $500 per person is due at the time of booking. Be sure to purchase trip cancellation at the same time you book. There are added benefits by doing so.
- Sept 9
Depart Spokane at 10:45 AM, change in Seattle and arrive San Francisco at 3:01 PM. Depart San Francisco at 6:15 PM, nonstop to Istanbul, arrive at 5:15 PM, depart Istanbul at 7:45 PM, arrive in Tel Aviv at 9:55 PM on September 10.
“Come,” he replied, “and you will see.” So they went and saw where he was staying, and they spent that day with him. It was about four in the afternoon. (John 1:39)
- Sept 10
- Arrive in Israel, Joppa
And a voice came to him, “Rise, Peter; kill and eat.” But Peter said, “Not so, Lord! For I have never eaten anything common or unclean.” And a voice spoke to him again the second time, “What God has cleansed you must not call common.” (Acts 10:13 – 16)
After clearing customs, you will be met by your representative who will assist you with your luggage and direct you to the car to transfer you to the Ruth Daniels Residence in Jaffa for overnight.
- Sept 11
- Caesarea Maritima, Mt. Carmel, Plain of Jezreel, Megiddo, Armageddon, Nazareth, Sea of Galilee
There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of what was called the Italian Regiment, a devout man and one who feared God with all his household, who gave alms generously to the people, and prayed to God always. About the ninth hour of the day he saw clearly in a vision an angel of God coming in and saying to him, “Cornelius!” And when he observed him, he was afraid, and said, “What is it, lord?” So he said to him, “Your prayers and your alms have come up for a memorial before God. Now send men to Joppa, and send for Simon whose surname is Peter“. (Acts 10:1 – 6)
We drive north through the modern City of Tel Aviv and through the Sharon Valley to Caesarea Maritima where the baptism of Gentiles began. (Focus on Acts 10). You will see the sunken harbor, the Hippodrome, the theatre, and the Roman aqueduct. Then drive to Muhraka (“burnt offering”) on Mt. Carmel and have a short hike to Muhraka Church where you will go up to its roof to have a magnificent, panoramic view of the Plain of Jezreel (Esdraelon). (Focus on I Kings 18, the confrontation between Elijah and the prophets of Baal.). We will then arrive to Megiddo, the site of great battles. It is here you will view the Solomonic Gates, the horse stalls, altar area and the impressive water system. From Megiddo, we will be able to survey the Plain of Jezreel, also known as Armageddon. We will proceed to the Nazareth Village for a special time of learning. We then drive towards the Galilee and end the day at the Arbel Cliff, which affords a view over the Lake of Galilee and the main sites of Jesus’ ministry. We will end up on the Sea of Galilee. Here you will lodge in a guest house on the shores of the Galilee, Nof Ginosar Village. BLD
- Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
- Sept 12
- Capernaum, Chorazin, Magdala, Sermon on the Mount, Bethsaida, Yigal Allon, Sea of Galilee
Now when he saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him, and he began to teach them saying: “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven”. (Matthew 5:1-3)
We start the day viewing the “Jesus Boat” at Yigal Allon Museum at Kibbutz Nof Ginosar. We then spend an hour on the lake in a wooden boat modeled after one from Jesus’ time. (Matthew 14) Afterward we visit the area of the Mount of Beatitudes (Matthew 5-7) and stop at a hillside location to reflect on Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount. Time permitting, we spend time at Tabgha, where Christians have long remembered the first feeding of the multitude (Mark 6) and nearby, the breakfast of John 21. We continue on to nearby Capernaum, where Franciscan archaeologists believe they have uncovered the house of Peter (Mark 1 and 2). We then drive a very short distance from Capernaum to Chorazin, on a hill above the northern shore of the Sea of Galilee, to see the unique basalt archaeological site. Continuing east, we stop at Beth Saida, which is the fishing village of the Gospels. This village was the hometown of Peter, Andrew, and Philip (John 1:44). Here, as well as Capernaum and Chorazin, Jesus performed most of his miracles, healed a blind man, and cursed all three towns for their failure to repent. In Luke’s account, the feeding of the 5000 occurred in the area of Beth Saida. We then drive a very short distance from Capernaum to Chorazin, on a hill above the northern shore of the Sea of Galilee, to will see the unique basalt archaeological site. Here we can see a first-century synagogue typical of the various synagogues that dotted the Galilee region. This is where Christ would have first preached the gospel.
- Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
- Sept 13
- Golan Heights, Tel Dan, Hazor, Sea of Galilee
Ascend the Golan Heights today, the Biblical Bashan and ancestral home of the half-tribe of Manasseh, which was part of the territory of Herod Philip in Jesus’ day. We stop for an overview of Gamla, also known as “Masada of the North”, where you’ll hear a heroic story of the few against the many, while the raptors that are protected here soar overhead in their magnificent, natural surroundings. We visit Tel Dan, one of the most important Biblical mounds in the country. Here, archaeologists discovered an inscription with the words “House of David,” and you can see a gateway from the time of Abraham, as well as the High Place of Jeroboam and the Israelite gate. We end our tour at Hazor National Park. Hazor is one of the principal cities on the Fertile Crescent. It engaged in trade with cities in Babylon and Syria. The Bible refers to Hazor as “the head of all those kingdoms” (Joshua 11:10). As you explore the ruins, including the beautifully-restored palace, the water system, and other gems, you’ll understand why Tel Hazor, too, has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage site. We return to our base for dinner and overnight. BLD
- Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
- Sept 14
- Beth Shean, Qumran, Ein Gedi, Dead Sea
“Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the desert, where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them he was hungry. The devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread.” Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man does not live on bread alone.’ (Luke 4:1-4)
Today, we visit three major sites: Beth Shean, Shilo, and Qumran. We drive down into the Jordan Valley to the strategic crossing point between the Jordan Valley and the Jezreel, which is located in the city of Beth Shean (aka Scythopolis). Here we tour and see the setting of Saul’s death (I Samuel 28 – II Samuel 1). We shall then survey the magnificent Roman and Byzantine ruins including the theatre, bathhouses, ancient restrooms, market areas and colonnaded streets. Driving south, heading to the Dead Sea, we stop at Qumran. Here we view Cave #4, which contained the greatest quantity of Dead Sea scrolls, and we will take the time to hike where the Essenes had their water system. While at Qumran, we will visit the Scriptorium and see the mikveh. Continuing south, we will drive along the western shores of the Dead Sea to Ein Gedi. We enter the nature reserve of Ein Gedi, rich in flora and fauna, and walk to a lovely waterfall. Here we can also try to imagine a possible cave that brings to mind the Biblical reference (1 Samuel 24:1-3), “Now when Saul returned from pursuing the Philistines, he was told, saying, “Behold, David is in the wilderness of Ein Gedi.” Then Saul took three thousand chosen men from all Israel and went to seek David and his men in front of the Rocks of the Wild Goats. He came to the sheepfolds on the way, where there was a cave; and Saul went in to relieve himself. Now David and his men were sitting in the inner recesses of the cave.” We then drive to Ein Bokek and check into our hotel early enough for a float at the shores for the Dead Sea. Dinner and overnight at David’s Hotel. BLD
- Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
- Sept 15
- Masada, Hebron, Bethlehem, City of David, Pool of Siloam, Hezekiah’s Tunnel, Archeological Park, Southern Steps, Jerusalem!
“…He saw the city and wept over it…”(Luke 19:41).
Masada, Bethlehem, City of David
Look, I bring you news of great joy, a joy to be shared by the whole people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; He is Christ the Lord’ (Luke 2:10-11).
This morning we will be met by archaeologist Eli Shukron. Our day with him will prepare us for one of the most significant Biblical sites of our time. As we leave our resort on the Dead Sea, will first drive to Masada where we take the cable car to the top, visiting Herod’s mountain bunker and the last stronghold of the Jewish revolt against Rome (66-73 AD). Driving north and passing by Hebron, we drive up the mountain to view King Herod’s tomb above us—Herodium. It is here at this hilltop view that we will gaze right into the Shepherd’s Fields of Bethlehem. We will enjoy an early barbeque lunch in Bethlehem. Soon after lunch, we will behold Jerusalem before us. Coming into the city, we arrive at the jewel: The City of David. The tour starts with a 10 minute, 3-D movie, which gives a visual timeline of the geography of the City of David from the original settlement to present day. We then descend into the ground to Hezekiah’s tunnel, which was built somewhere near 700 B.C. and was needed to bring fresh water from outside the fortified City of David (from the Gihon Spring) to the inside (deposited into the Pool of Siloam) so that the city would have drinking water during any siege. (The tunnel’s construction is referred to in Isaiah 22:9). As part of the tour, you can do the 40-minute walk in knee-high water from the Gihon Spring, or you can take the dry tunnel. We will all enter into the newly-discovered Pool of Siloam. John 9 records the healing of the blind man by putting mud on his eyes and asking him to wash the mud away. Time permitting, we will be walking through the newly-opened sewer tunnels under the Old City that connect us to Robinson’s Arch and Archeological Park. We plan to end our day at the precious Southern Steps to learn of Jesus visiting the Temple and of the day of Pentecost that took place here. We check into our hotel where we will be until our departure back to the airport for our flights home. Tryp Hotel. BLD
- Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
- Sept 16
- Mount of Olives, Garden of Gethsemane, Holocaust Museum, Israel Museum, Shrine of the Book, Jerusalem
After breakfast, we drive to the Mt. of Olives – with the Old City angled toward us. After an orientation, we descend the traditional Palm Sunday road. We continue down to Gethsemane (Matthew 26) with a visit to the garden and the church where we will have some quiet time. Afterwards, we visit Vad Yashem where you can grab a bite to eat in their cafeteria. Vad Yashem will be a highlight of your trip. A short 20- minute drive and we will be at the Israel Museum. It is here that we will be able to view the layout and plan of Jerusalem. We will also see the famous Isaiah scroll and the Dead Sea Scrolls that were found at Qumran along with many of the other major antiquities of The People of The Book, that will add more significance to many of your studies. BD
- Breakfast, Dinner
- Sept 17
- Temple Mount, Pools of Bethesda, St. Anne’s, Jewish Quarter, Antonio Fortress, Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Broad Wall, Western Wall, Golgotha and the Garden Tomb, Jerusalem
“He has Risen” (Mark 16:6)
This morning, we arrive at Temple Mount. After a time surveying the plateau and walking the expanse with a detailed explanation of the Dome of the Rock, Al Aqsa Mosque and its attachment to Sunday’s City of David visit, we depart and enter the Pools of Bethesda (John 5) and St. Anne’s Church. The church has remarkable acoustics which have been perfectly preserved from the Crusader period. We will visit the Jewish Quarter and walk along the Cardo–the ancient Roman road. It is here that its newest site reveals a portion of the road that Christ would have walked on his way to His crucifixion. We will see the Broad Wall, the Fortress of Antonio, and the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. You will have time to grab a lunch in the synagogue’s plaza at the golden menorah. Late in the afternoon, we will walk the Old City, beginning at the Western Wall, which is Judaism’s holiest site. We will walk to Damascus Gate, through the Old City and meander through its markets together. Lastly, the precious Garden Tomb. Here, we will learn of Golgotha and share worship with a special, private communion. We then return to the hotel for our final dinner in Jerusalem. BD
- Breakfast, Dinner
- Sept 18
- Flights depart for home
Go, therefore, make disciples of all nations; baptize them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teach them to observe all the commands I gave you. And look, I am with you always; yes, to the end of time.’ (Matthew 28:19-20)
This morning we are transferred to the airport in Tel Aviv for our flight back to the USA. B
Senior Pastor, Calvary Chapel Rathdrum
Coeur d’Alene, ID
Cory has served in full time ministry since 1989, as Youth Pastor at Calvary Chapel Silverdale, as an Assistant Pastor at Calvary Spokane and since 2004 as Pastor here at Calvary Rathdrum.
“I’m blessed to have the privilege of caring for the Lord’s flock here in Rathdrum. It is my hope and prayer that in everything we do, every person is drawn closer to Jesus. I want the saints to be encouraged and equipped for the work of the ministry; and those who don’t know the Savior to hear and respond to the Good News of Jesus!”
Pastor Cory and his wife Luann have been married since 1994 and have three wonderful children.
Through the use of The Word, we trust that once you have returned from our Christian tours, you will have gained a deeper knowledge of the scriptures and the multiple layers of teaching and truths that are inside each.
Isaiah 55:11 So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, But it shall accomplish what I please, And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.
You can be assured an experience like our previous participants, who have gained an appreciation of how God uses everything for His glory and for the purpose of furthering knowledge and understanding. You will see this as you encounter the geology of the land, the geography where events actually occurred and the archaeology that may (or may not!) still exist. Furthermore, through the remaining people in the land, the practices still in place and demography that have endured.
Colossians 1:20 and by Him to reconcile all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross.
Further, our assurance is received that through The Word; the teachings you will be exposed will solidify the truth which you and your family have been taught by seeing, touching and hearing the scriptures each day. We assert and firmly believe Romans 10:17 So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
You and your family will experience the oneness of the body of Christ during our trip.