Day 15 (Ein Gedi, Dead Sea)

Today we made a trip to an oasis in the middle of the desert. The name of the Oasis is “Ein Gedi.” It is a gorgeous place full of wildlife, trees and plants, wild animals, waterfalls, and springs. Ein Gedi derives it importance not only from its beauty but from its Biblical relevance. Ein Gedi is mentioned two or three times in the Old Testament. The first is seen in 2 Chronicles 20 which I will elaborate on. In this chapter the Ammonites, Moabites, and Meunites move to attack Jehoshaphat and the people of God. They walked through and most likely filled up on water in Ein Gedi in preparation to attack Jehoshaphat. Terribly outnumbered and overpowered Jehoshaphat goes to the Lord in prayer and demands a fast of all the people of Judah and Jerusalem. The Lord answers their prayers and says in 2 Chronicles 20:15-17,

Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God’s. Tomorrow march down against them. They will be climbing up by the Pass of Ziz, and you will find them at the end of the gorge in the Desert of Jeruel. You will not have to fight this battle. Take up your positions; stand firm and see the deliverance the LORD will give you, Judah and Jerusalem. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Go out to face them tomorrow, and the LORD will be with you.

The Lord turns these three tribes against one another causing them to kill eachother. Once Jehoshaphat and the people of God reached the attackers location they were all slaughtered. The story does not end here. The riches that the Lords people inherited from the plunder of this battle, which they didn’t even fight, took over 3 days to collect. A situation that at first looked horrifically threatening was turned around into one of the biggest blessings that Jehoshaphat had ever experienced.

This is one of the small waterfalls that drops into a pool of water right underneath. Many of my friends got in the pool and went under this waterfall. I would much rather climb stuff and that is exactly what I did.

This picture is a representation of how high Tyler, Isa, Morgan and I climbed. All those people below us are our group. It was incredible to be this high up. This picture makes it seem as if I am very close to the edge but the opposite is true. I have a 3 foot rule for cliffs and I was actually about 5 feet away from this one.

This picture is from the same location. This is what I was looking at while I had my quite time with the Lord. Having the opportunity to sit so high up and examine God’s incredible creation instead of man created buildings, streets and cars was very valuable. I wrote a poem to express my feelings in this place and the poem will be up once this trip is over.

The creatures at Ein Gedi were magnificent. They would come right up to you and look at you. I could have easily reached out and touched this creature but decided against it since I have no idea how it would react. I don’t feel like getting bit by some wild mountain beast.

This is me taking the picture you just saw. This is just to give you a visual on how close we can get to these critters! It was very cool.

After Ein Gedi we went back to the Dead Sea to a more muddy part. We ran along the shore until we found some mushy black mud and then we lathered up from head to toe with mud. All of us were completely black. You may ask, “Why we would do such a ridiculous thing?” My answer for these questions are always the same, “Why not?!” It was to much fun to miss out on. Once the mud was dry we got into the Dead Sea and let the mud soak in and off of us.

I thoroughly enjoyed todays events and even though it was a more relaxed day it felt packed.  Tomorrow we will be going to the Sea of Galilee.

I will be attempting to walk on water. Pictures will be available tomorrow evening.

 

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