Ok! This place is another “just wow!” place. This is a large and very important region in Israel. I’m going to talk about a specific place in the Golan Heights referred to Mount Benal.
After a bus ride through the foothills of the Golan Heights, the bus stops and dismisses its occupants at the base of its ridge. After a short walk to the top, the observer is faced with centuries of history and prophecy.
Let’s see…what can be seen?
First, there is a modern road. It’s paved. Cars travel on it daily. It’s a highway system very much like a highway in America. And yet, it’s nothing like a highway in America. For under this highway lies centuries of Biblical history. What is this road? It’s the Road to Damascus! Yes, this is the same route/road Saul would have been knocked off his high horse and confronted by Jesus. This is the road where Saul lost his sight and gave his heart to Jesus. (Acts 9)
From the same location, as you look over that ridge, on this side of that Road to Damascus, you can see fertile farmland. It’s a land that is lush and green, vibrant and full of life giving produce. Directly across the Road to Damascus, nothing is growing. It’s desert, sand, dry, arid. Literally, from this place on the Golan Heights, you can see the Word of God come to life. Israel is a “land flowing with milk and honey.” You can witness in the land “those who curse Israel being cursed”. Down the road, back towards Jerusalem, you can see Jordan. Jordan, once an enemy of Israel, couldn’t grow crops. Now, Jordan, walking in an alliance with Israel has experienced the fruit the of the land and can produce bountiful crops! “Those who bless Israel, I will bless.”
What else can you see? You can see the enmity between the Syrians and the Israelis. This conflict began when Abraham created his Ishmael. Israel has suffered ever since. Each time I’ve traveled to the Golan Heights, I’ve seen the effects of “bombs” exploding far off in the distance…the poof of smoke rising into the air. These current conflicts are nothing to be concerned about, but it sure is evidence of the relationship between the countries and what is to come.
The United Nations set up look outs at this location daily. They keep track of and log the activity happening in Syria. Oh and they make coffee. I’ll come back to this!
You can explore abandoned bunkers! The bunkers have been left from the Yom Kippur War in 1973. It’s a reminder to the nation that this place is volatile. It belongs to Israel. It was fought for and won by Israel (with God has The Warrior on their side). It’s wanted by Syria and they will continue to rally for this region.
What else? Israeli military surveillance is set up on the ridge next to this one. Israeli surveillance knows exactly what is going on all around them. Make no mistake, they know what Bahsar al-Assad (President of Syria) is eating for breakfast each day.
There is so much more! You’ll have to come and visit this region and see the amazing hand of God for yourself. But, wait! The coffee! Before you head back down the hill to the bus, you must stop and get a cup of coffee at “Coffee Anan” (a pun on both the UN leader and the Hebrew name meaning “Coffee in the Clouds”).
It’s almost as captivating as The Sea of Galilee!
PS Our last visit to the Golan Heights was followed up with a short tour of an Olive Orchard on a Kibbutz. We enjoyed washing our hands in olive paste, seeing how an olive press works, and the taste testing of numerous olive oils. And don’t forget, the purchasing of souvenirs!