This post marks day 5 of our biblical journey with the Church. It was part of the Hope and Grace TBN Israel tour 2018 with Pastor Joseph Prince and Pastor Joel Osteen.
The Holyland Model is a complete scale model of the old city of Jerusalem during the time of Jesus and the existence of the second temple. This display is built to a 1:50 scale with authentic construction materials, Jerusalem stone. It provides an excellent visual aid of how the old city of Jerusalem would look like based on the bible. According to our Tour guide, the model itself is mostly accurate with some mistakes.
That was probably how the Second Temple would look like at Temple Mount during Jesus’s time.
The Holyland model is located at Israel Museum. Inside Israel Museum housed the nation’s most significant artefact – the dead sea scrolls. The guide was explaining to us about the dead sea scrolls with much excitement because the manuscripts contain biblical writings of the old testament. Unfortunately, we can’t take photos in the museum. Otherwise, it would have been cool to have the actual images of the real dead sea scrolls. These manuscripts were discovered in the Qumran caves near the Dead Sea.
The white dome-shaped structure that you see in the photo resembles the lid of the ceramic jar which contains the dead sea scroll. According to our guide, the structure itself is bomb-proof!
The Wohl Rose Park of Jerusalem
Since we had some time to kill before the live service at the Southern Steps, we made a short trip to The Wohl Rose Park of Jerusalem Park to view the Knesset Menorah. The engravings on the Menorah depicts the struggles of the Jewish people. While we were there, we saw groups of students on a school field trip. They were studying the Menorah and writing some notes on their worksheets. The Knesset Menorah must be a significant structure in Jerusalem.
It would have been nice if we were given some time to roam around this park which has over 400 varieties of roses there though.
Live Service in Jerusalem (Southern Steps)
The sun was beating hard on us, but after an hour into the service, we were shaded from the blazing sun. It wasn’t so much of the heat from the sun but the harmful UV rays that would only increase the pigmentation appearing on my skin.
The situation was a little chaotic as everyone wants to sit closer to the stage and all of us have to squeeze in to make space for the other audience to sit. But the atmosphere was lightened up with the TBN hosts, Matt and Laurie Crouch. They walked into the audience seating area and greeted us personally with big smiles, hugs and handshakes.
The two of them are pretty sweet when they start to interact with each other. The couple cracked some jokes with the audience and tried to liven up the mood before the camera began to roll.
We were jumping out of our seats when we saw a familiar face on stage. Our dear Pastor Joseph Prince was live on TBN stage! It felt nice seeing you’re on Pastor speaking in front of a large crowd. Some of the Americans who came with TBN also love Pastor Prince’s sermons. They would sometimes drive all the way from their home to Grace Revolution Church to watch his latest sermons. As for us, we watch Pastor Prince preaching live at The Star Vista. It’s something I hope we would not take for granted as we are very blessed to a highly respected pastor to preach live in Singapore.
During the service, we sang some worship songs with Bethel Music, and they are pretty impressive, I must say! We kept singing one of their new songs called ‘Reckless Love’ which was sung throughout the three live services in Israel. Even though there were only two or three singers, their harmonising voices sounded terrific.
Guess what? It is pretty amazing worshipping the Lord right at the Southern Steps facing the city of David on God’s holy ground. Israel is home to the Jews as well as for God’s people.
Pastor Joel Osteen preached during the first live service about how God would also bless us whether we are in or out of our seasons. It was another encouraging message from Pastor Osteen himself. He even shed a tear when he spoke about how his wife has supported him during times of need.
I caught this man raising his Bible right in front of him as Pastor Osteen preaches. It was probably a bible encased in a leather covering, and it was beautiful. The Bible is a powerful weapon against the devil. It is also a geography textbook of Israel as it describes to us how the nation was mapped out.
After the service ended at around 6 p.m., crowds of people start walking out of the Archaeological Park. The situation was chaotic as there was a traffic jam outside. But praise the Lord, we managed to get up our bus swiftly and left the place quickly. What a night!
That’s a typical day for us in Israel during our biblical tour with Sar-El. Do check out for the next blog post as we unravel the other interesting sites in Jerusalem! Or you can visit my main blog post on Israel to have a look at our tour itinerary.