It’s been said that the number 8 in scripture represents new beginnings. That’s exactly how I would describe today (the 8th day of our trip) in my spiritual journey. Everything was so inspiring I don’t even know where to begin this blog tonight. For those of you just tuning in, I’m in Jerusalem – the city of our Great King. It’s everything I ever dreamed it would be and then some.
Our plans for the day took a sovereign detour almost immediately. Bob (my traveling companion) and I had planned to take a bus tour of the city since we only have 2 days here. We thought that would be our best option to get a panoramic view of Jerusalem and get a feel for the culture here. To get to the bus we had to walk about a mile from our hotel and as soon as we got near the place where we were to board the bus, the detour happened.
An Armenian taxi driver pulled up to the curb, which is common in this city, and asked us what our plans were. We told him and he offered to take us to various places that we could not get on the bus tour. After brief price negotiations, we agreed that it was indeed a better option, so instead of starting the tour at a hotel, we started on the Mount of Olives overlooking Jerusalem from them east. So many scriptures flooded my mind which I will not even attempt to catalog in this blog all at once but all of a sudden the Bible went from a Sunday School storybook to a living history with a secure future.
Just a few were the Olivet discourse (Matt 24), The ascension, and the poignant prophecy of Zechariah 14 where Christ is to return to that same mountain a second time without sin unto salvation. Like a lightening bolt from heaven, it all came flooding into my spirit. From there we could see the walls of the old city, the sprawl of the newer city, the famous temple mount, the Dome of the Rock which many believe houses the place where Abraham offered up Isaac; the city of David; Mount Zion; The Bethlehem hills and on and on and on….. I drank it in and craved for more.
From there we proceeded down the steep slope of the Mount of Olives to the Garden of Gethsemane where Christ prayed the night before His crucifixion and was subsequently arrested. Then we drove briefly through the old city before going to the back side of the Mount of Olives to Bethany to see the tomb of Lazarus, and across the Judean desert to the city of Jericho on the edge of the lush Jordan valley. From Jericho we could see the Jordan river and beginning of the Dead Sea with Mt. Nebo (where Moses was permitted to view the promised land) staring at us in the background.
The sovereign detour grew more clear when we discovered that our cab driver is a believer who happened to be acquainted with a true Messianic Jewish Pastor living in Jerusalem. One phone call later and we were sitting down having tea with a Jerusalem born Israelite who had discovered the truth that Jesus is indeed the Messiah. Folks, nothing happens by accident when you follow Jesus. Your steps are ordered by God and we realized the fullness of that truth today.
I leave you tonight with something profound that hit me at the tomb of Lazarus. It comes in the form of 3 short video clips which will take you about 2 minutes to watch all of them. As you watch them, keep this thought in mind. When you respond to the call of Christ to be free from things in your life, you may have to respond first, and wait for the fullness of your miracle afterward. Obedience may be the key to positioning yourself for God’s miracle in your life.