Years ago, when I first began to think of making the trip I am now describing, I had no thought of the many interesting places that I could easily and cheaply visit on my way to Palestine. I did not then think of what has been described on the foregoing pages. Now I have come to the place where I am to tell my readers the story of my travels in the Land of Promise, and I want to make it as interesting and instructive as possible. It is important to have a knowledge of the geography of all the lands mentioned, but it is especially important to know the location of the various places referred to in Palestine. These pages will be more profitable if the reader will make frequent reference to maps of the land, that he may understand the location of the different places visited. I shall first describe my trip across the province of Galilee, and take up my sight-seeing in Judaea in other chapters.

The ancient Phoenician cities of Tyre and Sidon were on the coast between Beyrout and Haifa, where I entered Galilee on the fourth of October, but we passed these places in the night. Haifa, situated at the base of Mount Carmel, has no Biblical history, but is one of the two places along the coast of Palestine where ships stop, Jaffa being the other. Mount Carmel is fourteen miles long, and varies in height from five hundred and fifty-six feet at the end next to the sea to eighteen hundred and ten feet at a point twelve miles inland. There is a monastery on the end next to the Mediterranean, which I reached after a dusty walk along the excellent carriage road leading up from Haifa. After I rested awhile, reading my Bible and guide-book, I walked out to the point where the sea on three sides, the beautiful little plain at the base of the mountain, Haifa, and Acre across the bay, all made up one of the prettiest views of the whole trip. Owing to its proximity to the sea and the heavy dews, Carmel was not so dry and brown as much of the country I had seen before.

By the direction of Elijah, Ahab gathered the prophets of Baal, numbering four hundred and fifty, and the prophets of the Asherah, four hundred more, at some point on this mountain, probably at the eastern end, passed on my way over to Nazareth later in the day. "And Elijah came near unto all the people, and said, How long go ye limping between the two sides? If Jehovah be God, follow him; but if Baal, then follow him" (1 Kings 18:21). He then proposed that two sacrifices be laid on the wood, with no fire under them; that the false prophets should call on their god, and he would call on Jehovah. The God that answered by fire was to be God. "All the people answered and said, It is well spoken." The prophets of Baal called upon him from morning till noon, saying, "O Baal, hear us. But there was no voice, nor any that answered. And they leaped about the altar that was made. And it came to pass at noon that Elijah mocked them, and said, Cry aloud; for he is a god: either he is musing, or he is gone aside, or he is on a journey, or peradventure he sleepeth and must be awaked. And they cried aloud, and cut themselves after their manner with knives and lances, till the blood gushed out upon them. And it was so, when midday was past, that they prophesied until the time of the offering of the evening oblation; but there was neither voice, nor any to answer, nor any that regarded." The sincerity, earnestness, and perseverance of these people are commendable, but they were wrong. Sincerity, although a most desirable trait, can not change a wrong act into acceptable service to God, nor can earnestness and perseverance make such a change. It is necessary both to be honest and to do the will of our heavenly Father. After water had been poured over the other sacrifice till it ran down and filled the trench around the altar, Elijah called on Jehovah, and in response to his petition "the fire of Jehovah fell, and consumed the burnt offering, and the wood, and the stones, and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench." Elijah then took the false prophets down to the brook Kishon, at the base of the mountain, and killed them. Acre is the Acco of the Old Testament, and lies around the bay, twelve mile from Haifa. It is said that the Phoenicians obtained the dye called Tyrian purple there, and that shells of the fish that yielded it are yet to be found along the beach. Napoleon besieged the place in 1799, and used a monastery, since destroyed, on Mount Carmel for a hospital. After his retreat, Mohammedans killed the sick and wounded soldiers who had been left behind, and they were buried near the monastery. Acre was called Ptolemais in apostolic times, and Paul spent a day with the brethren there as he was on his way down the coast from Tyre to Jerusalem. (Acts 21:7.)

About noon I entered a carriage for Nazareth, in which there were four other passengers: a lady connected with the English Orphanage in Nazareth, and three boys going there to attend the Russian school. About two miles from Haifa we crossed the dry bed of the Kishon, as this stream, like many others in Palestine, only flows in the wet season. Our course led along the base of Carmel to the southeast, and the supposed place of Elijah's sacrifice was pointed out. Afterwards Mount Gilboa, where Saul and Jonathan were slain, came in sight, and later we saw Little Hermon with Nain upon it, Endor below it on one side, and Jezreel not far away in another direction. We saw a good portion of the Plain of Esdraelon, and Mount Tabor was in sight before we entered Nazareth, which lies on the slope of a hill and comes suddenly into view.

Nazareth is not mentioned in the Old Testament, and the references to it in the New Testament are not numerous. When Joseph returned from Egypt in the reign of Archelaus, the son of Herod, he was afraid to go into Judaea, "and being warned of God in a dream, he withdrew into the parts of Galilee, and came and dwelt in a city called Nazareth; that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, that he should be called a Nazarene" (Matt. 2:19-23). I do not know the age of Jesus when Joseph and Mary came with him to Nazareth, but "his parents went every year to Jerusalem at the feast of the passover"; and we are told that the child was twelve years old at the time his parents missed him as they were returning from the feast, and later found him in the temple hearing the teachers and asking them questions. In this connection we are told that "he went down with them and came to Nazareth; and he was subject unto them" (Luke 2:51). Luke also informs us that Jesus, "when he began to teach, was about thirty years of age" (Luke 3:23). Thus we have a period of eighteen years between the incident in the temple and the beginning of his public ministry, in which Jesus resided in Nazareth. The greater part of his earth life was spent in this Galilean city, where he was subject unto his parents. It is a blessed thing that so much can be said of our Savior in so few words. It is highly commendable that children be subject unto their parents, who love them dearly, and who know best what is for their health, happiness, and future good.

After his baptism and temptation in the wilderness, "Jesus returned in the power of the spirit into Galilee, ... and he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and he entered, as his custom was, into the synagogue on the Sabbath day and stood up to read." When the roll of the Scriptures was handed to him, he read from the opening verses of the sixty-first chapter of Isaiah, then "he closed the book, and gave it back to the attendant, and sat down: and the eyes of all in the synagogue were fastened on him" as he told them: "To-day hath this scripture been fulfilled in your ears," and although they "wondered at the words of grace which proceeded out of his mouth," they were not willing to accept his teaching, and as he continued to speak, "they were all filled with wrath, ... and they rose up, and cast him forth out of the city, and led him unto the brow of the hill whereon their city was built, that they might throw him down headlong. But he, passing through the midst of them, went his way. And he came down to Capernaum, a city of Galilee" (Luke 4:14-31).

Having made arrangements for a carriage the evening I arrived in Nazareth, before daylight the next morning I started to drive to Tiberias, on the Sea of Galilee. When I went down stairs, at about half-past three o'clock, I found a covered rig with two seats, and three horses hitched to it side by side. I filed no objection to the size of the carriage, nor to the manner in which the horses were hitched. As the driver could not speak English and the passenger could not speak Arabic, there was no conversation on the way. As we drove out of Nazareth, I observed a large number of women at the Virgin's Fountain, filling their jars with water. At a distance of a little more than three miles we passed through Kefr Kenna, the "Cana of Galilee," where Jesus performed his first miracle. (John 2:1-11.) The road to Tiberias is not all smooth, but is better than might be supposed. With three horses and a light load, we were able to move along in the cool of the morning at a lively gait, passing a camel train, an occasional village, olive orchard, or mulberry grove. After a while the light of the moon grew pale, and about six o'clock the great round sun came above the horizon in front of us, and it was not long until a beautiful sheet of water six miles long - the Sea of Galilee - came suddenly into view. We rolled along the winding curves of the carriage road, down the slope of the hill, and through a gateway in the old wall, to Tiberias, on the west shore of "Blue Galilee."

According to Josephus, Herod Antipas began to build a new capital city about sixteen years before the birth of Jesus, and completed it in A.D. 22. He named this new city Tiberias, in honor of the emperor, but it does not appear to have been a popular place with the Jews, and but little is said of it in the New Testament (John 21:1), yet it was not an insignificant place. The Sanhedrin was transferred from Sepphoris, the old capital, to the new city, and here the school of the Talmud was developed against the gospel system. The ancient traditional law, called the "Mishna," is said to have been published here in A.D. 200, and the Palestinian Gemara (the so-called Jerusalem Talmud) came into existence at this place more than a century later. The Tiberian pointing of the Hebrew Bible began here. The present population is largely composed of Jews, about two-thirds of the inhabitants being descendants of Abraham. They wear large black hats or fur caps, and leave a long lock of hair hanging down in front of each ear. There is little in Tiberias to interest the traveler who has seen the ruins of Rome, Athens and Ephesus. The seashore bounds it on one side and an old stone wall runs along at the other side. I walked past some of the bazaars, and saw the mosque and ruined castle. About a mile down the shore are the hot springs, which, for many centuries, have been thought to possess medicinal properties. I tried the temperature of one of the springs, and found it too hot to be comfortable to my hand. As I returned to Tiberias, I had a good, cool bath in the sea, which is called by a variety of names, as "the sea of Tiberias," "sea of Galilee," "sea of Genessaret," and "sea of Chinnereth." It is a small lake, thirteen miles long, lying six hundred and eighty-two feet below the level of the Mediterranean. The depth is given as varying from one hundred and thirty to one hundred and sixty-five feet. It is really "Blue Galilee," and the sight of it is an agreeable change to the eye after one has been traveling the dry, dusty roads leading through a country almost destitute of green vegetation. In the spring, when the grass is growing and the flowers are in bloom, the highlands rising around the sea must be very beautiful.

Several places mentioned in the New Testament were situated along the Sea of Galilee, but they have fallen into ruin - in some cases into utter ruin. One of these was Bethsaida, where Jesus gave sight to a blind man (Mark 8:22-26), and fed a multitude of about five thousand. (Luke 9:10-17.) It was also the home of Philip, Andrew, and Peter. (John 1:44.) It is thought by some that James and John also came from this place. On the northwestern shore was Chorazin, situated in the neighborhood of Bethsaida; also Capernaum, once the home of Jesus; and Magdala, the name of which "has been immortalized in every language of Christendom as denoting the birth-place of Mary Magdalene, or better, Mary of Magdala." Safed is a large place on a mountain above the sea in sight of the Nazareth road, and was occupied by the French in 1799. It is said that the Jews have a tradition that the Messiah will come from this place. On the way back to Nazareth the driver stopped at the spring of Kefr Kenna and watered his horses and rested them awhile. Hundreds of goats, calves, and other stock were being watered, and I saw an old stone coffin being used for a watering trough.

After another night in Nazareth, I was ready to go out to Mount Tabor. For this trip I had engaged a horse to ride and a man to go along and show me where to ride it, for we did not follow a regular road, if, indeed, there is any such a thing leading to this historic place, which is about six miles from Nazareth. It was only a little past four o'clock in the morning when we started, and the flat top of the mountain, two thousand and eighteen feet above sea level, was reached at an early hour. Mount Tabor is a well-shaped cone, with a good road for horseback riding leading up its side. There is some evidence that there was a city here more than two hundred years before Christ. Josephus fortified it in his day, and part of the old wall still remains. According to a tradition, contradicted by the conclusion of modern scholars, this is the mount of transfiguration. By the end of the sixth century three churches had been erected on the summit to commemorate the three tabernacles which Peter proposed to build (Matt. 17:1-8), and now the Greek and Roman Catholics have each a monastery only a short distance apart, separated by a stone wall or fence. The extensive view from the top is very fine, including a section of Galilee from the Mediterranean to the sea of Tiberias.

In the Book of Judges we read that Israel was delivered into the hands of the Canaanites, and was sorely oppressed for twenty years. The prophetess Deborah sent for Barak, and instructed him with a message from God to the end that he should take "ten thousand men of the children of Naphtali and of the children of Zebulun" unto Mount Tabor. This he did, and Sisera assembled his nine hundred chariots "from Harosheth of the Gentiles unto the river Kishon. So Barak went down from Mount Tabor and ten thousand men after him. ... Howbeit, Sisera fled away on his feet to the tent of Jael, the wife of Heber, the Kenite," and she drove a tent-pin through his temples while he was lying asleep, (Judges 4:1-23.) The song of Deborah and Barak, beginning with the words, "For that the leaders took the lead in Israel, for that the people offered themselves willingly, bless ye Jehovah," is recorded in the fifth chapter of Judges.

I was back in Nazareth by ten o'clock, and spent some hours looking around the city where the angel Gabriel announced to Mary the words: "Hail, thou that art highly favored, the Lord is with thee" (Luke 1:28). These hours, with what time I had already spent here, enabled me to see several places of interest. Tradition points out many places connected with the lives of Joseph and Mary, but tradition is not always reliable, for it sometimes happens that the Greeks and the Romans each have a different location for the same event. This is true with regard to the point where the angry people were about to throw Jesus over "the brow of the hill" (Luke 4:29). I saw no place that struck me as being the one referred to in the Scriptures, and in reply to an inquiry, a lady at the English Orphanage, who has spent twenty years in Nazareth, said she thought it was some place on that side of the town, but the contour of the hill had probably changed. She also mentioned that the relics taken out in excavations were all found on that side, indicating that the old city had been built there. When Brother McGarvey visited Palestine, he found two places that corresponded somewhat with Luke's reference to the place. Concerning one of them he wrote: "I am entirely satisfied that here is where the awful attempt was made." I was shown the "place of annunciation" in the Latin monastery. On the top of a column stands the figure of a female, probably representing the Virgin, and a bit of ruin that is said to date back to the time of Constantine is pointed out. Here, I was told, stood the first church building erected in Nazareth. One of the "brothers" took the key and went around to a building supposed to stand on the site of Joseph's carpenter shop. It is a small chapel, built about 1858 over the ruins of some older structure. In the floor of marble or stone there are two wooden trapdoors, which are raised to show the ruins below. Over the altar in the end opposite the door is a picture to represent the holy family, and there are some other pictures in different parts of the little chapel. From here I went to the Virgin's Fountain. If it be true that this is the only spring in Nazareth, then I have no doubt that I was near the spot frequently visited by the Nazarene maid who became the mother of our Lord. I say near the spot, for the masonry where the spring discharges is about a hundred yards from the fountain, which is now beneath the floor of a convent. The water flows out through the wall by two stone spouts, and here the women were crowded around, filling their vessels or waiting for their turn. The flow was not very strong, and this helps to explain why so many women were there before daylight the morning I went to Tiberias. I saw one woman, who was unable to get her vessel under the stream of one of the spouts, drawing down a part of the water by sticking a leaf against the end of the spout. I also visited some of the bazaars and went to the Orphanage. This missionary institution is nicely situated in a prominent place well up on the hill, and is managed entirely by women, but a servant is kept to do outside work. They treated me very kindly, showing me about the building, and when the girls came in to supper they sang "the Nazareth Hymn" for me.

One of the occupations of the people here is manufacturing a knife with goat horn handles that is commonly seen in Palestine. Many of the women go about the streets with their dresses open like a man's shirt when unbuttoned, exposing their breasts in an unbecoming manner. The same is true of many women in Jerusalem. About one-third of the mixed population are Jews; the other two-thirds are Mohammedans and professing Christians, made up of Orthodox Greeks, United Greeks, Roman Catholics, Maronites (a branch of the Greek Church), and Protestants. I went back to Haifa and spent a night. The next morning I boarded the Austrian ship Juno for Jaffa. When I first landed here I had trouble with the boatman, because he wanted me to pay him more than I had agreed to pay, and on this occasion I again had the same difficulty, twice as much being demanded at the ship as was agreed upon at the dock; but I was firm and won my point both times. While in Galilee I had crossed the province from sea to sea; I had visited the city in which Jesus spent the greater part of his earth life, and the sea closely connected with several important things in his career. I had ascended Carmel, and from the top of Tabor I had taken an extensive view of the land, and now I was satisfied to drop down the coast and enter Judaea.