2008 – Greece

Dr. Dave on the steps leading up to the Bema Seat in Philippi

Israel 2007 | Greece 2008 | Egypt/Jordan 2010

In 2008, we had the pleasure of walking in the footsteps of St. Paul, touring around Greece and parts of Turkey with Dr. Dave.

On to Day 1 ->

If you’re bored with nothing to do, or if you happen to have insomnia (or an insatiable appetite for the nitty gritty details of the itinerary of the trip)…

Here’s the Itinerary for Dr. Dave’s Vacations for Growing Christians Greece tour for 2008.  This partial listing is just to give a few links for the places on the Greece itinerary.


DAY 1 – Saturday, May 24 ­ NEW YORK / ATHENS GREECE ONLY
Tour members depart from New York this afternoon for their overnight flight to Athens.

DAY 2 ­ Sunday: May 25 ­ ATHENS / THESSALONIKI
Weather: 77°F 63°F – Athens Intl Airport.
Tour members coming from Israel fly to Athens and meet Greece Only passengers arriving from New York. We fly to Thessaloniki, Aristotle’s birthplace. Here Paul and Silas founded a church, and to this church Paul wrote the letters to the Thessalonians which we have in our Bibles. We see the ancient Citadel, with its view over the bay to Mount Olympus, the palace of Galerius, the Rotunda and the Forum.
http://www.biblicalimagery.com/browse.asp?s=1,4,13,31,283 Thessaloniki (about 12 links)

Weather: 78°F 63°F – Athens Intl Airport.
Today we visit Kavala (Neapolis) where Paul and Silas landed from Troas after Paul’s “Macedonian Vision.” Next we visit Philippi, the Roman colony named for Philip of Macedonia, father of Alexander the Great. The gospel first came to Europe in Philippi, and here Europe’s first church was established. Here Paul and Silas were beaten and imprisoned, resulting in their Philippian jailer’s conversion. We visit the Forum, the agora and the theater where Paul may have preached, the traditional “prison of Paul” and “Lydia’s Baptistery.” We return to our hotel in Thessaloniki for dinner and overnight.
http://www.biblicalimagery.com/browse.asp?s=1,4,13,31,329 Philippi
http://www.biblicalimagery.com/browse.asp?s=1,4,13,31,119&img=GNMTKV01 Kavala

Weather: 78°F 63°F – Athens Intl Airport.
This morning we continue on to Pella, the birthplace and capital of Alexander the Great, where we see excavations of the large agora, pebble mosaic floors and temples, some dating from the 4th century BC, the time of Alexander. Next we visit nearby Vergina, the first capital of the kingdom of Macedonia, with the Royal Tombs and palace. We drive on to Veria (Berea), where the people eagerly received Paul’s message, “examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were true.” We continue on through the lovely Greek countryside to Kalambaka, with its interesting landscape of massive rock pinnacles, where we will spend the night.

DAY 5 ­ Wednesday: May 28 ­ METEORA / DELPHI / ATHENS
This morning we visit spectacular Meteora (a World Heritage site). Meteora literally means “suspended in air.” Here we visit the famed Hanging Monasteries, which are perched atop gigantic smooth rock pinnacles. The 24 monasteries were established in the 9 th century by Byzantine monks. Main access was by nets on ropes, hoisted by handcranked windlasses to towers overhanging the chasms. We continue our drive through the beautiful scenery of Greece. Imagine Paul teaching and discussing God’s Word as he and his fellowtravelers walked along the road. We come to Delphi, famous in the ancient world for the “Oracle of Delphi,” a pagan shrine which claimed to predict the future. We see the famous Bronze Charioteer, Temple of Apollo, the Theater, the Athenian Treasury and the Castalian spring. On to Athens for dinner and overnight.

DAY 6 ­ Thursday: May 29 ­ ATHENS / ACROPOLIS / CORINTH
This morning we visit the important modern and archaeological sites in the city of Athens, including the Acropolis with the Parthenon, Erecthion, the Propylae and Mars Hill, site of the Areopagus. While driving through the streets of Athens, we will see other places of interest such as the Academy, the Temple of Zeus, the Panathenian Stadium, Constitution Square and the Royal Palace. This afternoon we drive along the coastal road to Corinth, passing the site of the great sea battle of Salamis between Greece and Persia (480BC). We stop to see the spectacular Corinth Canal, which links the Aegean and Ionian Seas, then on to ancient Corinth. Below the acroCorinth, where the Temple to Aphrodite once stood, we visit the Temple of Apollo, walk through the agora, and stand before the bema, which is mentioned by Paul in his first letter to the Corinthians. We walk the Lechaion Road and discover the Erastus inscription. Return to Athens for dinner and overnight.

DAY 7 ­ Friday: May 30 PIRAEUS / MYKONOS
Today we set sail on our Aegean cruise. Late this afternoon we arrive at Mykonos, a hilly, rockribbed island dotted with quaint windmills and whitewashed houses set along narrow winding cobblestone lanes. Disembark and visit the village with its shops, boutiques and cafes. An OPTIONAL excursion goes to the tiny island of Delos, once the religious and commercial hub of the Agean. A guided walking tour includes the agora, the Temple of Apollo, the Hellenistic Quarter with its onceluxurious villas and the Avenue of the Lions, where five marble lions guarded a sacred lake. This evening we set sail for Rhodes.

DAY 8 ­ Saturday: May 31 ­ RHODES
This morning we arrive at the island of Rhodes, separated by a 10mile strait from the Asia Minor coast. This lovely island was described by poets as “the island of roses.” Here the apostle Paul landed after visiting the Ephesian church elders on his ship voyage to Jerusalem. In the 13 th century the Knights of St John of Jerusalem built a fortified city, now the bestpreserved medieval city in the Mediterranean. Enter through a medieval gate to explore the cobblestone streets of this walled Crusader city, or walk along the waterfront to the site where the Colossus of Rhodes, one of the wonders of the ancient world, once guarded the entrance to the harbor. An OPTIONAL excursion goes along the picturesque coastline of Rhodes to Lindos. From the acropolis of Lindos and the Temple of Athena, on a precipice 400 feet above the sea, there is a breathtaking view over St. Paul’s Bay and the Aegean Sea. Returning to the city of Rhodes, the tour visits the remains of ancient Rhodes and the Temple of Apollo. An OPTIONAL guided walking tour goes through the medieval city. Tour the Palace of the Knights of St John, and walk down Chevaliers Road before returning to the ship for our evening sail.

DAY 9 ­ Sunday: June 1 ­ EPHESUS / PATMOS
This morning our ship docks at the Turkish port of Kusadasi (Island of Birds). Here we find many shopping opportunities in the Oriental Bazaar, including stores famous as carpet exporters. An OPTIONAL excursion goes to Ephesus, a halfhour bus ride from Kusadasi. Ephesus is one of antiquity’s greatest cities, and the church at Ephesus is one of the Seven Churches of Asia mentioned in the book of Revelation. The apostle Paul and the apostle John lived and taught in Ephesus. On a guided walking tour through the excavations of this ancient city, made almost entirely of marble, view Hadrian’s library, the Temple of Diana, and walk the milelong marblepaved “Harbor Avenue” to the well preserved 24,000seat theater mentioned in . Along the way, marvel at the remains of buildings, mosaic floors, monuments and public baths. Setting sail once again, we arrive at the beautiful island of Patmos, where John the Apostle was exiled because of his witness for Jesus Christ. Here he received the vision of future events, and wrote the book of Revelation. Disembark and visit the quaint town. An OPTIONAL excursion by bus goes to an ancient mountaintop monastery with a spectacular view of the island and harbor, with a brief stop at a cave where John may have lived while on Patmos.

DAY 10 ­ Monday: June 2 ­ PIRAEUS / ATHENS / NEW YORK
This morning we disembark at Piraeus, the port of Athens. We transfer to the airport for our flight to New York, with lifelong memories of our travels in the footsteps of Paul and 1 st century believers, a greater appreciation for the background and the message of the New Testament, and some wonderful new friends!.

19:1 And it happened that while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul passed through the inland country and came to Ephesus. There he found some disciples. And he said to them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” And they said, “No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.” And he said, “Into what then were you baptized?” They said, “Into John’s baptism.” And Paul said, “John baptized with the baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in the one who was to come after him, that is, Jesus.” On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. And when Paul had laid his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they began speaking in tongues and prophesying. There were about twelve men in all.

And he entered the synagogue and for three months spoke boldly, reasoning and persuading them about the kingdom of God. But when some became stubborn and continued in unbelief, speaking evil of the Way before the congregation, he withdrew from them and took the disciples with him, reasoning daily in the hall of Tyrannus. 10 This continued for two years, so that all the residents of Asia heard the word of the Lord, both Jews and Greeks.

11 And God was doing extraordinary miracles by the hands of Paul, 12 so that even handkerchiefs or aprons that had touched his skin were carried away to the sick, and their diseases left them and the evil spirits came out of them. 13 Then some of the itinerant Jewish exorcists undertook to invoke the name of the Lord Jesus over those who had evil spirits, saying, “I adjure you by the Jesus whom Paul proclaims.” 14 Seven sons of a Jewish high priest named Sceva were doing this. 15 But the evil spirit answered them, “Jesus I know, and Paul I recognize, but who are you?” 16 And the man in whom was the evil spirit leaped on them, mastered all of them and overpowered them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded. 17 And this became known to all the residents of Ephesus, both Jews and Greeks. And fear fell upon them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus was extolled. 18 Also many of those who were now believers came, confessing and divulging their practices. 19 And a number of those who had practiced magic arts brought their books together and burned them in the sight of all. And they counted the value of them and found it came to fifty thousand pieces of silver. 20 So the word of the Lord continued to increase and prevail mightily.

21 Now after these events Paul resolved in the Spirit to pass through Macedonia and Achaia and go to Jerusalem, saying, “After I have been there, I must also see Rome.” 22 And having sent into Macedonia two of his helpers, Timothy and Erastus, he himself stayed in Asia for a while.

23 About that time there arose no little disturbance concerning the Way. 24 For a man named Demetrius, a silversmith, who made silver shrines of Artemis, brought no little business to the craftsmen. 25 These he gathered together, with the workmen in similar trades, and said, “Men, you know that from this business we have our wealth. 26 And you see and hear that not only in Ephesus but in almost all of Asia this Paul has persuaded and turned away a great many people, saying that gods made with hands are not gods. 27 And there is danger not only that this trade of ours may come into disrepute but also that the temple of the great goddess Artemis may be counted as nothing, and that she may even be deposed from her magnificence, she whom all Asia and the world worship.”

28 When they heard this they were enraged and were crying out, “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!” 29 So the city was filled with the confusion, and they rushed together into the theater, dragging with them Gaius and Aristarchus, Macedonians who were Paul’s companions in travel. 30 But when Paul wished to go in among the crowd, the disciples would not let him. 31 And even some of the Asiarchs, who were friends of his, sent to him and were urging him not to venture into the theater. 32 Now some cried out one thing, some another, for the assembly was in confusion, and most of them did not know why they had come together. 33 Some of the crowd prompted Alexander, whom the Jews had put forward. And Alexander, motioning with his hand, wanted to make a defense to the crowd. 34 But when they recognized that he was a Jew, for about two hours they all cried out with one voice, “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!”

35 And when the town clerk had quieted the crowd, he said, “Men of Ephesus, who is there who does not know that the city of the Ephesians is temple keeper of the great Artemis, and of the sacred stone that fell from the sky? 36 Seeing then that these things cannot be denied, you ought to be quiet and do nothing rash. 37 For you have brought these men here who are neither sacrilegious nor blasphemers of our goddess. 38 If therefore Demetrius and the craftsmen with him have a complaint against anyone, the courts are open, and there are proconsuls. Let them bring charges against one another. 39 But if you seek anything further, it shall be settled in the regular assembly. 40 For we really are in danger of being charged with rioting today, since there is no cause that we can give to justify this commotion.” 41 And when he had said these things, he dismissed the assembly. (ESV)