Via Dolorosa and Church of the Holy Sepulcre

We walked the Via Dolorosa today.  It all began in a place called the Praetorium.  This is the location where Jesus was beaten by the Roman soldiers.  The floor of the courtyard where the beatings took place still exists.  They have built a chapel over the site to protect the stones.

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As we made our way through the narrow roadways that are now cluttered with many small stores and marketplaces I could not help but feel the intensity that would have been present as Jesus struggled along carrying the cross towards Golgotha.  The Via Dolorosa ends at the Church of the Holy Sepulcre.  This, according to Catholics, would be the holiest place on earth.

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While it is a very beautiful building filled with ornate gold lamps, chandeliers, and candlesticks of great worth – there was a hollow feeling there.  I will not leave much commentary here on this other than genuine praise that we serve and worship the Living God!

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We then headed to the house of Caiaphas, the chief priest that Jesus was brought to after being arrested at Gethsemane.  Under a chapel there was the dungeon in which Jesus would have been beaten before being brought to Pilate.

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This was also our last stop on the tour for our trip.  I can say without a doubt that each and every one of us here on this tour are different than when we arrived.  Being here in Israel is a life changing experience.  The Bible “in 3-D”, as our tour guide put it…

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Thank you all for joining me and the rest of the GCC-er’s that were on this trip.  Please pray for safety for all of us as we head to the airport in Tel-Aviv tomorrow morning.  There is a strike ongoing here in Israel with the Civil Workers Union which may effect our flight tomorrow.   Please pray that the issues they have are resolved quickly so that we can return as scheduled and see our families.

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