Explore Israel: A Biblical Tour of the Holy Land

Devotional



Day 2: The Wilderness


The mysterious wilderness is the setting of so many stories in Scripture. The Israelites wandered here for 40 years and through all the desolation God always provided for his people. 


King David fled from Saul into this wilderness and found shelter at Ein Gedi, an oasis in the desert. From this location, we see the inspiration for many Psalms that speak of God’s faithfulness in dry places and his provision for his people in the desert.


Many years later in the New Testament, John the Baptist lived in the wilderness of Judea. John fulfilled Isaiah’s prophecy of someone crying out to God’s people, making the crooked paths straight and paving the way for the coming of the Messiah. 


Matthew’s Gospel tells us that John baptized Jesus in the Jordan River. Shortly afterward, Jesus went into the wilderness to be tested and tempted. He became hungry and physically weak before Satan came to him. When he defeated Satan’s lies, he traveled to Galilee to begin casting out demons, healing, and preaching about the arrival of the Kingdom of God. Jesus’ ultimate defeat of Satan would come later through his death and resurrection. 


These stories remind us that God’s promises are still true and that throughout history he keeps them. In what ways has the Lord shown his faithfulness in the wilderness seasons of your life?