Welcome to my online teaching courses:
Walking the Holy Land
Let me Tel You why I created walking The Holy land Online Courses?
I live in Israel and I have been a licensed tour guide for 20 years, guiding Christian groups through the Holy Land almost every day. They had the privilege to make the journey, but it is not possible for so many people for a variety of reasons.
1. Too expensive for their personal budget- yes it costs a lot to travel to Israel, I am aware of people saving for many years in order to be able to afford the trip
2. Physical challenges – the flight to Israel is very long, there is a lot of walking each day, Israel tourist sites are not well equipped for wheelchairs, and being part of an organized group tour is strenuous and too exhausting for some people.
3. Can’t take that much time away from work or from their family. You need a minimum of 8 days in Israel to experience the Biblical sites, plus another 2 days of flight travel. So total 10 days minimum. Some groups stay for 14 days.
4. Another big reason is that people feel anxious about traveling in the Middle East, where there are uprisings and regional conflict in all the countries surrounding Israel.
5. Now there is the global pandemic of Coronavirus, that has shut down almost all international travel for the past year. In the future, Israel may require all foreign visitors to have proof of vaccination or quarantine.
I want to make it easy on you and give you an online experience of walking the Holy Land.
To add another important point there have been many groups visiting Israel and sadly they missed receiving quality teaching on tour, despite they visited the most famous tourist sites, but were rushed from one place to another, to finish their program.
WHY another online course Walking the Holy Land?
In these online courses you will learn at your own pace, because all these online courses will be optimized for all your devices, no matter where you are you can learn about the holy land at your own time and comfort and convenience, from your own home, office, even mobile phone.
You can visit these biblical sites virtually and receive deep teachings anytime you like, you will learn about the mind and heart of Jesus through the middle eastern eyes through the Hebraic perspective, of the First Century Culture, Customs and Context.
Our faith is rooted in history, Geography, and archeology in a place called the Holy Land.
That also includes modern day Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, and Egypt. You may have heard this region called the “Levant.” It is geologically the land bridge between Africa and Asia and Europe. The epicenter of the world. God chose to reveal himself here and the story is recorded in the pages of the Bible. It is a story of salvation of actual people at a specific time in history in this specific region. The message of salvation spread throughout the world, but some of the indigenous Christians remained in the Holy Land. I am descended from these indigenous Christians and I am honored to share part of my testimony with you.
I was born and raised in Jerusalem, speaking the Semitic languages like Jesus and his disciples. The streets of the Old City of Jerusalem were my playground, and as a young kid, I knew that Jesus performed many of his miracles and taught his parables in my neighborhood. My family lived along the Via Dolorosa, the path that Jesus walked as he carried his cross to Golgotha.
Some Background about my Maronite Community:
My family are Maronite Christians, and we are indigenous to the Holy Land. I have an ancient unbroken footprint in following the steps of Jesus and the pages of the bible from the early church till today. All of my ancestors are Christians from Lebanon, going all the way back to the early church and our language is Aramaic with a Syrian dialect. It is closely related to the Aramaic of Jesus, he spoke a Galilean dialect. I also learned to speak Hebrew – it was easy for me because Hebrew, Aramaic and Arabic are all Semitic languages and closely related to each other. In his daily life, Jesus also spoke Hebrew and Aramaic, so it makes me understand the scripture better.
The believers who formed the Maronite church lived in the ancient region of great Syria, near the church of Antioch where the believers were first called “Christians.” Located in the current regions of Lebanon and Syria, they were the closest geographic neighbors to the Jewish believers in Israel and from the beginning they adopted the style of praying of the Jerusalem Church. known as the “liturgy of saint James” it has been used continuously by the Maronite Church until today in Aramaic, and it does not have the outside influence of the west like the Roman Catholic Church.
The Maronite tradition was based on the first Jerusalem church that was led by Jewish disciples of Jesus soon after His Resurrection. We read in the book of Acts that the disciples and believers who stayed in Jerusalem were still praying in the Temple, still saying the Jewish prayers, honoring the Jewish patriarchs and they had the excitement of knowing Jesus as their Messiah in the Jewish context.
We as Aramean Christians still preserved the ancient prayers and way of thinking from the first century style. So this is why I am able to authentically teach you the Original Hebraic context of scripture because I belong to the ancient semantic languages and middle eastern way of thinking.
We Maronites are not Arabs, or Palestinians — We are descendants of Arameans, a group that originated in modern day Syria a few thousand years before Christ. Aramaic, which was spoken by Jesus but has been nearly forgotten in the past few centuries.
“The Maronites have [an] identity, and their national ID is Aramaic Phoenician.
It is so interesting I made the DNA ancestry test, and I am 100% from the middle east from Modern Lebanon & Syria area which means originally Phoenician.
So I can explain easily about the Customs the Culture and Context of scripture.
I am not only an ancient Christian but also a born again spirit filled believer and follower of Jesus Christ and believe in the power of the unchanging word of God. I am so grounded in the word of God that is my approach in teaching scripture.
Why did I choose to study to be a Tour Guide?
Growing up in Jerusalem, I saw groups of faithful Christians walking through my neighborhood, as they walked on the Via Dolorosa, praying at each Station of the Cross, making their pilgrimage to the most holy site – Calvary, where Jesus was crucified, died, buried, and resurrected. The birthplace of our Christian faith! These visitors came from all over the world and I wanted to show them what is special for Christians in the place where I grew up. So, I decided to become a licensed tour guide. This is a common career position in Israel.
The training for tour guides in Israel is very difficult – it is equivalent to Graduate School. The Israeli government’s Ministry of Tourism designed a special 2-year program to teach in depth about all facts of Israel – especially focused on the Geography, History, Archeology, Religions, and people of the Holy Land. The students must pass a comprehensive exam to earn the License and become a Tour Guide of Israel. I received my government issued tour guide license 20 years ago, and since then I have been guiding and teaching nonstop. It is my full-time job and I guide thousands of people each year, from many different countries.
What does it mean to be a Tour Guide in Israel?
I am responsible for a tour group of foreign Christians, the size of the group is from 10 to 50 people. We travel together in a large coach bus around the land of Israel for around 10 days. I give instructions along the way, and I take the group to several Biblical sites each day from 8:00 am till 5 pm, and then take them to the hotel. At the Biblical sites, I explain the history, geography, and archeology that is related to the place where an actual event occurred and was recorded in the Bible. I also teach the deeper meanings behind the lines of scripture.
What we will learn about in these Online Courses?
These online courses will take you through a journey to see the land of the bible through Jesus middle eastern eyes.
Drawing from my 20 years of experience, as an indigenous believer who speaks and understands the languages of Jesus, I will walk you through the lifestyle of the 1st century people of Israel. We will learn about how the people of the 1st century did live, eat, dress, work, travel, worship, communicate – all the aspects of their daily lifestyle. We will focus on the Culture, the Customs, and the Context of first century mindset. I call them the three C’s.
My hope for you is that these courses will lead you to understand Jesus in a better way, and as a result these teachings will bring Clarity, Correction and Confirmation to your walk with Jesus.
First C: Culture
Why Culture is important:
Culture is a strong part of people's lives. It influences their views, values, humor—
their loyalties, fears and hopes.
Words have specific meanings to the language and to the culture in which they are used. That is why it is essential to learn about the Hebrew language and Jewish culture of Jesus. Jesus lived during the first century while the Temple was still in full operation with the sacrificial system. However, at that time the whole region was under oppressive Roman rule.
Jesus was born into a Jewish family in Bethlehem. He was later raised in Nazareth as a Jewish kid to study Torah in synagogue. Jesus was a middle eastern Galilean torch observant Jew. With his family he traveled during the three pilgrimage feasts up to the Temple in Jerusalem. He was a Rabbi in Galilee and taught in all of the synagogues. He went back to Jerusalem during the Jewish holy festival of Passover to be sacrificed as a lamb of Judah and he will come back again as the lion of Judah.
Luke 4:15 He taught regularly in their synagogues and was praised by everyone.
So when you are reading scripture and building relationships with Jesus, it helps to have some perspective and understanding of his Jewish identity and culture.
These online courses will give you practical information about how to understand Jesus in his First century culture. It is different from your own western modern culture, By the way I have a complete online course about the differences between eastern and western cultures.
Second C: Customs
Why are Customs important?
A custom is a pattern of behavior that is followed by members of a particular culture. Most people adhere to customs without any real understanding of why they exist or how they got started.
The purpose of customs to provide a sense of association and belonging to communities, groups, and organisations within a society. Because customs are so important to social harmony, over time they become the norms of society.
To give you an example:
Washing the feet Custom:
Due to the warm climate in Israel, it was common for people to go bare-foot while doing their daily activities. the feet were constantly exposed and got dirty easily. Foot-washing, like eating and sleeping, became an essential daily activity that one could not do without.
The people used water to wash the feet of visitors as a form of greeting and as an expression of hospitality.
Turning toward the woman, He said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave Me no water for My feet, but she has wet My feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair.
Third C: Context
Why Context is Important
In general, the meaning of words is found within the context of sentences, and how a sentence finds its context in the other sentences that surround it.
When interpreting Scripture, we must understand what the context of the passage is,
Every verse in the Bible has a specific historical context, which has to do with culture, Customs, time in history, author, audience, the geographical and political situations, as well as the occasion and purpose of the writing.
Historical context helps us to see more clearly the circumstances around events in time that we are not familiar with.
One example: (Matthew 6:22-23). The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are healthy, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eyes are unhealthy, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness!
Over the years, these words of Jesus have invited all kinds of speculation. But we can solve Jesus’ cryptic saying about the “eye” by hearing it within its Hebraic context, and grasping the figures of speech that Jesus used.
Jesus was most likely comparing the idea of having a “good eye” with having a “bad eye,” two idioms that have been a part of the Hebrew language and Jewish culture from biblical times until today. We can find it in the Old Testament book of Proverbs. Proverbs 28:22
Having a “good eye” (ayin tovah) is to look out for the needs of others and be generous in giving to the poor. To have a “bad eye” (ayin ra’ah) is to be greedy, stingy, and self-centered, blind to the needs of those around you.
There are many examples; in my monthly online lessons I will teach you so much more about Hebraic idioms.
My signature course “Walking the Holy Land” is based on a 10-day tour of the holy land tracing the life of Jesus from his birth to his resurrection. In this signature course I will take you on a journey through many biblical sites in the holy land starting first in Bethlehem to learn about Jesus birth, then we will learn about the Judean desert and the ministry of John the Baptist preparing the way for Jesus baptism in the Jordan river. then up to Nazareth, through the Jezreel Valley, and spend a good amount of time around the Sea of Galilee with Jesus and his disciples. The climax of the teaching will be in Jerusalem during the last week of Jesus life, ending on the cross. Finally, we will celebrate Jesus Resurrection from the Mount of Olives and his appearance to his disciples on the Road to Emmaus.
I’m developing another course about the Historical Geography of the land of the bible in detail, and more courses, such as differences between Eastern and Western Cultures, another course we will be learning about the lord’s prayer in Aramaic also another course will be learning about the Shema the most important Jewish prayer in the old testament, in these courses you will learn phrases in Aramaic and Hebrew that most scholars agree that Jesus himself had pronounced from his own mouth. Like Malkhout Shamaim , the kindgdom of heaven and many many more semetic biblical phrases from the original languages, such as hebrew Aramaic and some Greek.
Value - Results:
The courses will provide insights of how god has worked throughout history, archeology and geography of the Land of the bible, taking these courses can transform your life to be thinking more like Middle Eastern Jesus, you will understand more about who Jesus is, and when u understand more who he is in his Culture Custom Context you will know him better and as a result it will help you understand your life better. simply these teachings can help you to be transformed by the renewing of your mind.
2 Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.
You will be touched deeply especially if you are hungry to learn more in your spiritual walk and reach more depth of understanding the stories in the pages of the bible.
More Value / Results:
When you go through this journey with me of these online courses:
Three major things as a result will happen in your walk with Jesus : I call them the 3 C’s
Clarity Correction Confirmation.
First C: Clarity
Taking these online courses will result in that You will have more clarity in your Christian walk.
Do you have clarity in life? Let us face it, many of us get overwhelmed with uncertainty about future and lot of questions linger in our minds, and we worry so much about so many things. Our focus gets shifted to the immediate problems and we feel being taken over by the circumstances in life. How can we see clearly in the midst of all that is happening around us? What gives such clarity in life?
1 Corinthians 14:33
For God is not a God of confusion but of peace.
You will understand scripture in a much clear way will erase so much confusion from your Christian walk.
Second C: Correction
When taking these online courses, you will have correction of understanding the word of god, we live in an age hostile to correction. “Me” has become a standard word, I want to do it my way, I know the best, who are you to tell me what to do? often our Christian friends don’t want to be corrected. And that’s sad, because a gentle rebuke can be good for the soul.
I am aware you will not like hearing this, but this applies to every Christian, because we all have relationships that require at times, if we truly love others, for us to offer biblical correction. So although it is never an easy task, but it is a part of biblical love.
2 Timothy 3:16-17
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
Third C: Confirmation
Taking these courses will result in that You will have confirmation of your faith
the Holy Spirit gives us the increased ability to practice our faith in every aspect of our lives and to witness Christ in every situation. Let me explain
Unfortunately, we live in a culture full of anxiety, dispute, questionable, and denial of our Christian faith. The challenge for us is whether we are going to obey Christ or our surrounding culture. These online courses will help you to be more grounded and gain more confidence in your Christian walk.
So, confirmation of the word of god roots us more deeply in our relationship with the person of the holy spirit, and also strengthen our bond with the church community with our brothers and sisters in the body of Christ.
For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
We need both the word and the spirit they go together; we cannot focus only on the holy spirit but need the word of god both should be our focus because the word is the spirit.
The Word of God, Scripture, will Confirm our faith as it strengthens, deepens, increases and matures in the very depths of our hearts and being into existence to become stronger believers.