Day 22 (baptism, Gidion Spring, Ruins)

Today I got baptized in the Jordan River. The significance of this river is seen in the Gospel scriptures. It was here that Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist. I assume that many Christians believe this is a nice clean beautiful river since Jesus was baptized in it. However the opposite is true. It is a dirty nasty river. This is a picture of the area where we were baptized. As you can see it is not the most appealing place to be baptized. The baptism itself was a great experience. I have been baptized before but being baptized in the same waters where John the Baptist baptized Jesus and many others held significance that I did not had at my last baptism. Understanding baptism when being baptized is important. Submitting your life to Christ and believing in him as Lord and Savior is when Salvation occurs, baptism comes as a result of that truth. This is the awesome group of people I am here with. If you know what I look like you can pick me out. I am the guy on the front left with the brown shirt and black hat. What we did at the end of the day was thrilling. We got to visit an archeological site where an entire Roman City was discovered. The name of this city was Beit She’an. It held a strategic position on the Jordan river and was important during its time. Only 30% of the city has been excavated and this is a fairly new discovery. Above you can see one of the many ways the Romans moved the massive rocks used to build their monumental buildings. These are two pillars found behind of the stage of a theater. This is the theater I am talking about. Out tour guide told us that this theater could seat over 7,000 people. That doesn’t sound believable when you look at it. However if the top portion that has black rocks contained more seats, I can see how that fact would be true. Here are a more pictures of the Theater.

Something this city contains that we didn’t get to see is a Amphitheater where gladiators fought. I am assuming that part of the city has not been excavated yet since we never got the chance to see it. The Amphitheater would have seated many more people than this small theater. We moved on to another extremely interesting place. I call it the, “Poo-Nanny Palace!” You are about to see how ancients Romans relieved themselves.

These are a few of my friends relieving themselves Roman style. The way this works is there are rock planks sticking out of the wall. You sit in between two of the planks and then do your business. Unlike most cities being destroyed by invading armies this one was destroyed by an Earthquake. This may be the reason it has been preserved better. I may be wrong since I am assuming. Overall this experience was incredible. I got to see firsthand how an ancient Roman city functioned. From the marketplace to entertainment, from using the restroom to religious activities, and from building the city to gladiator sports. Being baptized in the Jordan river was energizing. It was a great reminder that my life is sacrificed to Jesus and everything I do I do for the one who saved me. What I do I do for the one who did what I can’t do. There is no undoing what was done, yet his doing has undone what we did.

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