Caesarea by the Sea - Jesus continued
“Something phenomenal happened here”
When you're in Israel, you're prepared to realize this again and again. It is always amazing to read something in the Bible and understand that where you are standing is where it took place. However, some spots should receive the five-star Biblical-Yelp review. Precept begins our Holy Land Tour at one such encounter. Out of the gate, seated in a replica of an amphitheater that faces the Mediterranean, we start our tour. Caesarea by the Sea was a central location for Israel and an important location for you and me as well. Our Precept family (what we've already come to call each other on the tour) started things off in this amphitheater by declaring the truths from How Great is Our God and In Christ Alone. I wish I could express the immediate excitement, the anticipation and resolve as the words of In Christ Alone rose to a crescendo.
Kay Arthur guided us in the Word of God. We discovered truths from God's Word, walking through an overview of Genesis to Revelation, focusing in on God's plan for the nations. As we sat in the amphitheater, overlooking the beauty of the waves and the bright blue sea, we turned to Acts 10 while we got some background information.
Our Lord directed the disciples, in Acts 1, to wait in Jerusalem after His resurrection. He ascended in the clouds but gave them strict orders to wait in Jerusalem for power from on high. Acts 1:8 sets the agenda for the book
In Acts 2, it was on. As Peter preached Jesus from the Old Testament, the Spirit of God was poured out on the believing Jews that were visiting Jerusalem. The plot of the book of Acts starts in Jerusalem and continues through Judea and Samaria. The church experiences the glory of God in the gospel of grace. In Acts 10, Cornelius (an Italian by the way) is told to send for Peter by an angel in a vision. You’ve just got to study Acts, friends. The next day, while Cornelius’ men are traveling to Joppa, Peter has a crazy dream that changes things. Seriously, you’ve got to study Acts. Precept’s Bible Study Method can help guide you through that process.
On our first day of the tour, there we sat, in the place where Cornelius and his buddies from Joppa received the Spirit of God.
We walked through Romans 9-11, Ephesians 2, and other passages to show God's plan in Jesus for the Jews and the Gentiles.
Caesarea by the Sea: Jesus, Peter, Paul, and Me - The Mystery.
Boom, right out of the gate - Kay Arthur brought it to Jesus, God’s plan for the ages through the nations, the role of Israel and the Gentiles, and the immeasurable living hope we have because of the resurrection of Jesus!
It wasn't Kay. It was the Spirit of God using the Word of God. Precept's Bible Study Method isn't magic or elite, but rather a tool that God uses to help us know Him. In a little over an hour, God showed us some fantastic truths through His Spirit.
We just had to respond in gratitude to our Lord.
My good friend, Stephen Hinkle, led us in How Great Thou Art.
You all, I wish you could have been in the amphitheater with us.
Other groups that were touring the area stopped, listened, and joined in as we were humbly responding to God's sovereign plan in salvation.
Yes, we were tired.
Yes, the sun was blazing.
Yes, jet lag and is a real thing.
The Precept Holy Land Tour family is raring and ready!
There are so many different things that happened in Caesarea in the book of Acts and the life of the early church. Paul, later in Acts gave a defense of the gospel here, most likely in a similar amphitheater. Paul was also held in prison here, where he possibly had a view of the Hippodrome, the place where chariot races took place.
Praise the Lord for what took place here!
Here is a sermon that I did last year on Acts 10, the same passage - Grace for Every Race
What are some ways that God has shown you His great plan for the nations?