Israel trip in 2022 – 2. Galilee rooftop chats of faith

I like youth hostels, being a single traveller, I’ve used them not just to be cheap, but I actually like to use them to get to know other people.

I’ve met quite a few Israelis in other places, in China, UK, Germany and Hungary.

Israel welcomes Christians, and preaching the gospel isn’t illegal, unless you do with a bribe. It is frowned upon though.

The proposed laws on banning gospel messages in Israel was brought up by only a tiny handful (two) members of the Knesset (Israel’s government) It got Israel’s Messianic movement and evangelical Christians worried for a day, but has been quickly quashed by PM Benyamin Netanyahu.

But I found I can be a bit creative and probe people with some other questions. In this youth hostel they have these rules pinned up.

This hostel has this poster up as they want discourage visitors of being obnoxious and annoying. I totally it get why.

In September 2022 we had the recent death of the Queen. Some German Christians came up to me in the kitchen of the hostel and told me the Queen “can’t of been a proper Christian”, she was only using the title just to meet formalities. I said no, she often talked about her faith in Christ, and explained how she would always make this part of her Christmas speech, something which might not happen in successive rulers. With this, you can get a feel of a not so pleasant vibe which would make others who don’t know Christ would put them of us.

This is the perfect place to chill after seeing places of Jesus around the shore of the Galilee. This is probably the best hostel I have stayed in, in about 20 years of youth hostelling.

Pita, chili layered homous, dates and coffee seems like a good lunch before heading out again.

Later on in the evening, I got chatting to different people hanging out on this roof. Two of them were other young tourists, anoher German guy who had to leave and a Frenchman.

The French lad was a Jew called Hugo he is about 22 I think. I asked him, as you going to move here? he said he was religious but wasn’t really sure if he wanted to be an Israeli. I smiled at him, and told him you should there is a ton of pretty Israeli girls your age here. He laughed.

I got to tell Hugo about the big poster at the side of the road, I asked him “you know this can’t be the Moshiach as he never visited Israel. The Moshiach is Israeli.”

Hugo: “How do you know?”

Me: “Its in Isaiah, in chapter 53 tells you a lot about him. You can read it in the bible, but read if for yourself and not through some religious leader’s interpretation.”

I could see Hugo’s fascination here. I sense one concern though. He would still go and look at a Rabbi’s opinion. Me very quickly prays in a few seconds he would think for himself.

Hugo: “I am going to look this up later”

He got his phone out, which has a Jewish Tankh (whole Old Testament in English and Hebrew), and said he wanted to see what a Rabbi would say.

He brought up the verse and read it quickly, his phone’s screen had a space for a commentary of someone’s interpretation, which was…. empty!! Then he said something quite shocking:

Hugo: “I think this lake has something to do with the Messiah…”

(me quietly utterly beside myself with joy and worshiping the Lord silently)

Hugo decided to head to bed, I said I enjoyed talking with him. I went back out into the street and walked around the seafront giving thanks and praise and glory that this young man seemed curious about the most explicit foretelling of the gospel and also at the place where Jesus did most of his ministry, 100 metres from the edge of the lake.

I stuck to the rules, well I gave him some things that he really got excited about…..

1. Items in the wrong places2. Galilee rooftop chats of faith – 3.

Google’s Hebrew predictive text predicts Jewish Messiah?

Just added Hebrew keyboard to my phone since my Moto G4 handset rolled out Android 7.0 a few days ago.

Hebrew texting

If you type in the Hebrew word for Jesus whilst texting, the next words are computer-predicted.


HaNotzri (Christian) | HaMoshiach (The Messiah) | Ho (He)

Which makes me think, how does Google’s predictive algorithm work?   Is this bit of software licenced from somewhere else? Or is it self-learning from conversations from Hebrew speaking Android phone users?

Its not picking it up from me, as I am not a regular and confident Hebrew speaker.

Compared to texting with English, the left hand pic is what’s predicted instead…..

Screenshot_20170326-231046  chabad wrong messiah

The right hand picture I’ve written Rebbe Menachem Mendel Schneerson, a Ukrainian/New York Rabbi often mistaken as being the Messiah by Ultra Orthodox Jews in Israel and elsewhere.   Here there aren’t any words related to Messiah, King of Kings or anything else.

Curious?   I am.


Riding on a Colt

Zechariah 9:9 from the OT talks about a prophecy of a future Messiah of Israel:-

9 Rejoice greatly, Daughter Zion!
Shout, Daughter Jerusalem!
See, your king comes to you,
righteous and victorious,
lowly and riding on a donkey,
on a colt, the foal of a donkey.

In my neighbourhood I noticed this:-

This banner on the car says “Baruch ha ba melech moshiach”   in English:  Welcome to king of the messiah.

My thinking is the Ukrainian Rabbi fella (actually he died in about 1994) which some religious Jews think is the Moshiach and maybe someone’s interpretation of the scriptures here was the Moshiach would come on this Mitsubishi Colt!! *

Actually I do get Arab children coming up my street on a donkey sometimes.

The New Testament explains the fulfillment of this:-

Matthew 21

21 As they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, 2 saying to them, “Go to the village ahead of you, and at once you will find a donkey tied there, with her colt by her. Untie them and bring them to me. 3 If anyone says anything to you, say that the Lord needs them, and he will send them right away.”

4 This took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet:

5 “Say to Daughter Zion,
‘See, your king comes to you,
gentle and riding on a donkey,
and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’”

6 The disciples went and did as Jesus had instructed them. 7 They brought the donkey and the colt and placed their cloaks on them for Jesus to sit on. 8 A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. 9 The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted,

“Hosanna to the Son of David!”

“Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”

“Hosanna in the highest heaven!”

10 When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred and asked, “Who is this?”

11 The crowds answered, “This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee.”

Talking of the Mount of Olives, further up this street is a park you can stand and see across Jerusalem.   This Google Streetmap below shows the Mount of Olives, you can see by the ‘whiter’ area of the hill, as it contains thousands of graves.

* My mistake, this is actually a Mitsubishi Lancer.