Exploring God’s promises in the Promised Land
Upcoming Israel Trips with BSF
May 17 – 30, 2019
Dr. Carl Laney
May 31 – June 12, 2019
Dr. John Hannah
October 1 – 13, 2019
Dr. Mark Strauss
BY BENNETT ROLAN | BSF BLOG EDITOR
S usie Rowan slipped her prayer request between the giant stones of Israel’s Western Wall. Taking a step back, God’s presence was almost overwhelming as she reflected on the history of that holy place. It represented the fullness of God’s plan: His faithfulness to Israel, His sacrifice on the cross and the final restoration still to come.
And there, Susie’s request rested safely, tucked in the wall.
“To know that Jesus would have also been right there,” Susie said, “I experienced His peace and presence, knowing that He heard, and He would answer those prayers. Not just for my good, but for the good of the whole, the good of many, which would also be for my good as well.”
As the executive director of Bible Study Fellowship, Susie has witnessed God’s amazing work in and through His people worldwide. But in 2011, Susie experienced the truth of God’s Word in a new way during her first visit to Israel on a BSF Trip.
“It’s something I wish every Christian could experience,” she said. “Maybe the most memorable site was Gethsemane. One of the olive trees was even thought to have been there at the time of Jesus. You live through His prayer and begin to feel the agony of anticipating the cross. It’s a very quiet time of reflection. Then you walk into the church, called the Church of Nations, on the Mount of Olives. People are just worshipping together, in so many different tongues and languages. It was an extraordinary experience.”
Leaving the church, the group stood and surveyed the Kidron Valley where Jesus walked and where David wrote in Psalm 125:2, “As the mountains surround Jerusalem, so the Lord surrounds His people both now and forevermore.”
“Your heart really does just soar,” Susie said. “You remember the promise that God has given us, that on the day that’s coming, the feet of Jesus are going to stand on the Mount of Olives and you’re standing there. It’s pretty powerful, pretty emotional.”
Throughout the trip, while worshipping on the Sea of Galilee, walking on ramparts surrounding the old city or praying at the possible site of Jesus’ crucifixion, familiar Scripture took on a deeper sense of reality.
“I really love cities,” Susie said. “I love their energy and their tension. I’m a city person, so walking through Jerusalem, feeling the Jewish, Muslim tension at the Dome of the Rock was pretty powerful. Thinking through what the future would look like, where a temple could be built to prepare the way for the return of Christ, was extraordinary.”
Entering the trip, Susie expected to learn from the experts leading the group. But she left with more than just knowledge. For Susie, God’s Living Word came to life in a new way. Since that time, Susie and Roger have already made a second trip to Israel with the BSF Travel Connection tour and are eager for the next opportunity God provides to return to His land.
If you’re interested in a trip to Israel, several BSF trips are available throughout the year. To learn more about a trip of a lifetime, check it out here.
Susie Rowan at The Western Wall
Roger Rowan on The Sea of Galilee
BSF Israel Tour Group
Upcoming Israel Trips with BSF
May 17 – 30, 2019
Dr. Carl Laney
May 31 – June 12, 2019
Dr. John Hannah
October 1 – 13, 2019
Dr. Mark Strauss
Thank you. I believe that my and I will make this trip in the near future and I would love making it through BSF
Thank you Susie for continuous updates and inspirational messages. A trip to the promised land of Isreal has been my dream for decades now. still praying and trusting God that resources will be available at his own appointed time. i would love to make it with BSF KISUMU
(Kenya) fellowship in the near future . God bless you abundantly.
What a glorious testimony Susie. Knowing your experience will helo me prepare better as I look forward to the opportunity to be part of this trip with bsf at God’s time. God bless you ma.
Israel! Looking forward to the day I will go & I hope it will be with the BSF tour. Have enjoyed reading on your experience Susie. Thanks for sharing.
The 19th of January I came home from Israel tour ( w/Baptist of Israel ) 12 days of sttudy.
It was the most blessed trip.
Wow! Thank you for sharing your experience with us Susie, its a testimony of Gods goodness and faithfulness. I have a feeling the prayer you stuck in the Western Wall has already been answered.
I have never been to Israel,it has always been a dream of mine to travel there… in Gods time.
Dear Susie Thank you for encouraging words as well as invitation to consider a trip to the Promised land of Israel.No doubt this a noble trip for all believers to witness where our Lord JC was born,walked,lived and crucified to redeem us from all inequities.Hopefully we will be able the join other BSFer’s fraternity whenever the resources are available in future.To God be the glory for ever.Congratulations for the good works you and your husband are doing empowering us to share Divine wisdom.
I went to Israel in October. Was there 8 days …the Sea of Galilee, being baptized in the Jordan River, eating St. Peter’s Fish, the Dead Sea, Masada, the caves where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found, the Valley of Armageddon, the Temple Mount, the Garden of Gethsemane, the Mt. of Olives, and, most importantly the empty tomb were all highlights! What an incredible experience. It has made God’s promises come alive! I highly recommend this trip to all!
Susie,I so enjoyed reading about your beautiful , beautiful trip I have always wanted to go, with your description I felt like I was there , I am so fortunate to have had you as the lecturer of BSF for four years you tell beautiful stories, hope to go someday.
Have always wanted to make this trip but the years when I could travel have passed, I am now 96 years old and do not walk without assistance.
We have been looking at videos of Israel on u tube and they are wonderful. You get a good idea of The places Jesus experiences in his days on earth.
I was fortunate enough to get to travel a fair amount after age fifty. Of all my travels my trip that was the greatest was 12 days in Israel. I only went because a friend in another church needed someone to share a room. Sad, but she was unable to go at the last minute but I had the most meaningful time of my life. I was baptised in the Jordan River and I will re-live this trip forever. It made my studying the bible much easier as I had a visual picture of the places I was studying about that I actually had seen.
My dream trip, on my bucket list. Was going this February and because of financial changes in our life had to cancel my trip. Maybe someday I will get to go!
Thank you for sharing on your trip to Israel. I was their in January
of 2016. It is very emotional while I was the there. God’s Word has really opened up to me.
I have visited Israel twice. What is the cost for the entire trip including hotel, food, plane fair, insurance etc ?
Considering the ongoing war getting more nastier can you GUARENTEE our protection?
Hazbollah and Hamas are getting more and more aggressive.
Each of the tours is a little different in cost due to the length of the tour or the time of the year. If you will click on each of the tours, you will see an itinerary and the cost. Each of the BSF tour costs include airfare from Newark, all hotels and food. Insurance is an extra cost, but highly recommended in case you must cancel. Unfortunately, BSF cannot guarantee your protection, but people who have gone have stated that they felt safe the entire tour.
Si yo pudiera ir sería una bendición, el ver y recordar que por esa tierra y por nosotros Dios nos dio un Salvador que me ha enseñado su amor tan misericordioso a mi y a todo el mundo.
Thank you for sharing your experience as well as the information regarding future trips. I pray that my husband I will be able to make this tour some day.
I’d love to join you on a trip to Israel and I’m waiting for the Lord’s stamp in my passport
This is surely in my bucket list praying that I will have an opportunity to step into the promise land before meeting the Lord in His heavenly home.
As a Christian in Africa and in U Gandalf,I would love to visit this second heaven before I die,I wish someone could help me realise this dream- my prayer request for 2019 as I approach it with faith.
Christine Ogwang. God has given us no basis that we should consider this place a “second heaven. It will be destroyed. There is no experience with God that can be gained there than where you are now. God’s heart is for those who have never heard the gospel to hear, than for his resources be used to gain “experiences” for themselves. Serve the Lord, not experiences claimed by others. Lay up treasure in the real heaven. Wealthy American believers are very bad examples of stewardship of the gospel for those who are rich in faith in Africa.
I pray for the Peace of Jerusalem, may we who love you enter the Good Lord’s rest and prosper .
I would love to go to the Holy Land it’s been a desire of mine for a long time …..Denise Kungle
Thank you Susie, for the message and the photos of the Holy land.
I also visited in 2015 while doing the book of John, it was quite an experience. Easter time and we went early morning to see the empty tomb The city of Jesus Capernaum. Saw the sheep following the Shepherd just as the scriptures tell us. ‘My Sheep know my voice…’ Great experience.
Wow this is so good and I wish to go. But I wonna know the cost and how we can meet ?
The cost of the tours vary due to length of tours and time of year. You may see the costs if you click on the available tours. People who live outside the USA fly directly to Israel and meet the group there.
This trip is on my bucket list of things to do. It’s a calling it has been for a long time. I wish I had the money to go.
I also visited Israel April 2018. It was a trip of a lifetime. The Bible has come alive to me now. I also left aprayer at the western wall and some of my tears. It was beyond words to describe the joy and the peace of being in God’s Holy Land. The Bible Study this year is so rich and rewarding after going to Israel.
I would love to take another trip but not sure of the cost. Please send brochure. God bless Bsf and it’s staff.
Would love to do this trip. How can you join from outside US?
Does the cost vary? Please let me know
Yes, you may join a BSF tour when you live outside the US. You make your own flight arrangements and meet the group in Israel. Raptim Travel will quote you the land cost minus the airfare.
Thanks Sue for sharing. It’s my wish come true to be able to visit Israel. My sister and I are planning to go on this trip when Funds permitting. To walk where Jesus walked is an experience that I would like to get.
Thanks Suzie for sharing, I went to Israel in 2011. Truly it was my best tour ever in life. A real life changing experience. My experience from Egypt to Israel made such an impact in my life, . I felt like I was walking through the bible . God willing, I will revisit Israel with BSF which I joined last year.
I’m a long-time member of BSF and very interested in these tours. Can my husband join the tour? He’s not in BSF. We often travel with a couple who are past-missionaries. Would the tour be open to them, too? I’ve been waiting for you this! Thanks!
Susie thanks for sharing – our last trip (last May) was life changing I encourage all to go if they are able We have been twice and my husband and I are planning on going again this Spring
I would like more information on the up coming trips to Israel
If you click on the available tours for 2019, the information for each tour is posted.
Wud really love to join BSF group to Israel . If I am in Malaysia … how do I join this trip ? Is there a meeting point ?
Yes, BSF members have joined tours from outside the USA. They meet in Tel Aviv, Israel. Raptim Travel can quote the land price, then you would purchase your own flights to Israel to meet up with the group. You may click on one of the tours to get the initial information and then contact Raptim directly.
God gave me an opportunity to visit Israel 4 years ago. I really wish it would have been with my precious BSF group. Never knew BSF had plans of travelling to Israel. Its an awesome experience just to see the Bible coming true. Loved the boat ride on the Sea of Galilee, singing songs with praise. Our Lord is coming soon. In our study now, Just love to read about David and how he handles matters on his journey to become King soon. Love my BSF… Thank you….
I agree with you, Susie! A trip to Israel brings the Bible to life in glorious living color!! A WONDERFUL, LIFE CHANGING experience! I believe reading and studying scriptures IN the very location where they occurred gives us revelation and understanding we can not get any other way. An unforgettable joy! I am transported back to the wonderful places I visited EVERY TIME I read or hear certain scriptures or teachings! Who can sail on the Sea of Galilee and fail to remember the feel of the sun and the wind; the sounds of birds, and the smell of the sea air, and the sights of the towns, the rocky shores, the mountains! WOULD LOVE to go back anytime!
Thanks for sharing. Me to, I have always this desire to visit this Holy Land buit till now it’s like a dream! Maybe one day I could realise it if God has this plan for me!
Thank you for sharing,,, I been there, ,,, is absolutely unique and powerful , I really felt the Holy Spirit and I will delight to encounter that experience again.,especially knowing that my Savior was there. When is the next trip?
Future tours have not been published yet!
Thanks for sharing for sharing your experience Suzie. Going to Israel will be a dream come true for me.With God nothing is impossible.
I have been to Israel with my husband, in various groups three times; the first was with Walk Through the Bible, shortly after we were first married. On two trips we worked in and around Bethlehem; we followed Brother Andrew to Gaza and heard him preach. Also, I worked for our government in the Middle East for two years and at that time Israel was divided and the West Bank was part of Jordan. I was able to walk through the old city of Jerusalem and beyond with a Christmas in Bethlehem. What a blessing it was to see where Jesus walked and lived; to be able to see Hebron and all the villages that are described in scripture.