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Posted February 17, 2004

Book: Baker’s Bible Atlas
Author: Charles F. Pfeiffer
Baker Books, Grand Rapids, MI, pp. 352

To appreciate this work, please read

Book: Working on the Inside
Author: Retta Blaney
A Sheed and Ward Book, New York, pp178

Posted on our web site Feb. 16, 2004

In it, it places great emphasis on the Ignatian way and his advice to be “all there” when reading scripture. In other words, to put ourselves in the actual geographical locations where Jesus taught and worked miracles.

An excerpt from the Jacket:

Much of the Bible is a history of God’s dealings with his people Israel. The events it records took place in a specific geographical environment that involved many people and places. So to more clearly understand the Bible, it’s helpful to visualize how Israel interacted with her neighbors and was affected by geography.

Baker’s Bible Atlas give you the tools you need to reconstruct the scenes of history — full-color maps, illustrations, color photographs, a time line and more. The concluding chapters trace the continuing history of Bible lands, emphasizing the work of modern archaeologists. An index and geographical gazetteer help you locate significant places of Bible times on modern and traditional maps.

An excerpt from the Book:

Galilean Ministry

All of the disciples of Jesus except Judas Iscariot were Galileans and much of the teaching and ministry of Jesus took place there. Important places of ministry in Galilee include: Cana. The first two miracles were performed in the village of Cana. Here Jesus changed water into wine at a wedding feast (John 2:1-11) and healed, at a distance, the son of a nobleman from Capernauum (John 4:46-54). Bartholomew, otherwise called Nathaniel, a disciple of Jesus, was from Cana (John 21:2).

Two sites vie for the distinction of being the Biblical Cana, Kefr Kenna, the Cana of ecclesiastical tradition, is near Nazareth on the road to Tiberias and the Sea of Galilee. Farther to the north is the site of Khirbet Qana, near Jotapata, a fortress of the Jews where, a generation later, Josephus was taken prisoner by the Romans. Khirbet Qana awaits excavation. It is, however, the probable site of New Testament Cana.

Capernaum. On the northwest shore of the Sea of Galilee was Kefr-Nahum, “the town of Nahum” or Capernaum. Its site has been identified with Tell Hum, an excavated mound located between Bethsaida and Tabigha, about two and one-half miles southwest of the point where the Jordan enters the Sea of Galilee.

Capernaum was evidently a Roman military post along the highway which went through Galilee en route from Damascus to Jerusalem. It as from a tax-collector’s booth along this road that Matthew was called to discipleship (Matt. 9:9) Peter’s house (Mark 9:35) probably served as headquarters for Jesus at Capernaum. Although He was “brought up” in Nazareth, Capernaum was emphatically “his own city” (Matt. 9:1). Here Jesus performed many miracles and preached to the multitudes. In the synagogue He proclaimed Himself the bread of life (John 6:48). Periodically Jesus found it necessary to leave Capernaum and find a place of retirement on the other side of the lake (Matt. 8:18).

Excavated ruins of Capernaum include a white limestone synagogue dating from the third century A.D. This structure, while assuredly later than the ministry of Christ, may have been built on the site of the structure in which Jesus ministered. It is located near the northern shore of the Sea of Galilee in a picturesque setting surrounded by palm trees.

Table of Contents

1. The world of the Old Testament

2. The land of Palestine

3. The table of the nations

4. The empires of the fertile crescent

5. The journeys of the Patriarchs

6. Lands of the sojourn and wandering

7. The exodus and wilderness wandering

8. Palestine before the Conquest

9. The conquest of Canaan

10. Palestine divided among the twelve tribes

11. Palestine under the Judges

12. The kingdom of Saul

13. The empire of David and Solomon

14.. The city of Jerusalem

15. The divided kingdom

16. Judah alone

17. Exile and restoration

18. The Hellenistic age

19. The Roman empire

20. New Testament Palestine

21. The life of Christ

22. Early apostolic history

23. Journeys of the Apostle Paul

24. The geography of the Book of Revelation

25. The centuries between

26. Bible lands today

27. Biblical archaeology in the twentieth century


Index of Modern Places Names