Thu, Mar 28, 2019
Our focus today is the city of Jerusalem — Walk the path of Christ, Upper Room, King David’s Tomb, Church of Gallicantu (meaning cock-crow), Overlook of Judas and Field of Blood (Map on hand), Holy Sepulcher, Temple Mt, and Garden Tomb.
This was a remarkable day. The entire journey reaches the climax. Jesus of Nazareth came to Jerusalem as the sacrificial Lamb. From the House of Caiaphas and Upper Room, we visited the pit where our Savior was held overnight in darkness. We also saw the Valley of Blood where Judas hanged himself as well as the hills of Golgotha. That moment I entered the garden tomb to see the empty tomb and confirmed with my eyes. Jesus is not here; he has risen.
Upper Room & Caiaphas home
The Upper Room is known as the Last supper; it was interesting to be in the same place that Jesus and his disciples had that infamous last supper.
At Caiaphas’ house, Jesus was held overnight in a pit. As I stood in the pit that is believed to be where Jesus was, I could not help but think, thanks, thanks for all you have done for me. To God be all the Glory. We next went to the courtyard where Peter denied Christ.
The Romas used to blow trumpet three times as a means of telling the time. It became known as the rooster crowing. It is believed that that could be what was indicated before the cock crow three times. From the courtyard, we were able to see the original path that Jesus was led on to be crucified.
The Via Dolorosa
We also walk The Via Dolorosa (Latin for “Way of Grief,” “Way of Sorrow. This is the path that is located in the Old City of Jerusalem. It is believed that this is the way Jesus walked on the way to his crucifixion. Today it is a market place with shops.
There are three branches of the Christian community that occupies this church, Catholic, Coptic, and Greek Orthodox. Each of the three churches that hold this holy place has a section that has a specific identity. They also provide access to the tomb. An ecumenical order governs the church. Nothing gets done unless all three groups agree.
There are two possible locations identified as the burial place where Jesus’ body was buried. The first one is in the Church of the Holy, and the other is in the Garden Tomb. While both graves are empty, the Garden tomb seemed the most likely
A ladder placed on the wall above the courtyard by someone doing work on the building. They forgot to remove, and it’s sitting here for 300 years because they can’t agree on how to take it down.
The next stop was the Temple Mount where the dome of the rock is located and where the 2nd temple is located. This is believed to be Mount Mariah where the temple once stood. Abraham brought Isaac to be sacrificed at this location, and it is held that God brought Jesus.
In 1967 after the six-day war the security of the site was in the hands of the Israeli and control of the security of the Mosque that now sits on that site is in the hands of the Muslims. Muslims believed that this is where Muhammad was taken into heaven to receive the Koran. This is one of the three most holy sites for Muslims. Even though the Quran does not mention Jerusalem at all the Bible mentions Jerusalem mention 800 times.
This site is the Holy Place for the three major religions. The Jews worship at the foundation wall of the second Temple known as the Wailing Wall or the Western Wall because they are not allowed to go to the location beyond the wall control by the Muslims. The Christians view the entire location as a holy place.
Muslims believe that this is where the Prophet Mohammed went to the throne of God. In the seventh century, when the Muslims conquered Jerusalem, The Dome of the Rock (gold-topped Islamic shrine of the Old City), is where the Muslims built the Al-Aqsa Mosque after conquered Jerusalem.
This place is significant. This garden tomb is where we served communion and had service before we entered the tomb. The Garden Tomb is located in the same vicinity as Golgotha, where Christ was Crucified.
Who is this man? He is Jesus the Christ who died, was buried and rose from the grave, he ascended into heaven and will return. This is the Christian message. This is the hope of salvation. This story of Jesus demands our response. It is indeed the Great Exchange; He paid for our sins and in turn gave us eternal life. He is here with us in our hearts because he has risen even though he is not in the grave.
We are the engrafted ones; Gentiles save by grace. Like the gamer does with the olive tree so God has engrafted us into the tree of life.
Romans 11:17-22 (NKJV) 17 And if some of the branches were broken off, and you, being a wild olive tree, were grafted in among them, and with them became a partaker of the root and fatness of the olive tree, 18 do not boast against the branches. But if you do boast, remember that you do not support the root, but the root supports you.
19 You will say then, “Branches were broken off that I might be grafted in.” 20 Well said. Because of unbelief, they were broken off, and you stand by faith. Do not be haughty, but fear. 21 For if God did not spare the natural branches, He might not spare you either. 22 Therefore consider the goodness and severity of God: on those who fell, severity; but toward you, goodness, if you continue in His goodness. Otherwise, you also will be cut off.