The Land of Israel

The land of Israel in Jesus' day was situated at the western end of the Fertile Crescent with the great Mediterranean Sea as its western boundary, the Jordan River as the eastern, the northern being Lebanon and Hermon, and the southern boundary was the hills of Judea which slope down into the great Negev and the desert.

Israel's length (from Dan to Beersheba) was about 160 miles and its average width was about 50 miles. It was a mountainous land and to be familiar with it a person had to often "lift up his eyes to the mountains." It was a land with extraordinary contrasts of climate, from the cool airs of Jerusalem to the tropical heats of Jericho, "the city of palms," only 14 miles away. It was also a very colorful land with strikingly bright clouds and its famous rich blue waters of the Sea of Galilee, as well as the vivid green of the Jordan valley and the gleaming snows of Mount Hermon. The flatland along the shores of the Mediterranean formed a highway down into Egypt along which had marched many conquerors.