I am most honored and pleased to be invited by the Biblical Archaeology Society to be the host, teacher, and tour guide on their first ever eastern Mediterranean Cruise! The theme of our tour is “The Seafaring Paul in His Jewish Roman World.” This is not a typical “cities of Paul” tour, but rather a historical archaeological exploration of Greco-Roman culture in the time of Paul as a way of understanding first-hand, both on the sea and land, his world. I have spent forty years studying Paul–texts, archaeology, and traveling to the places he lived and visited both in the Holy Land, Turkey, Greece, and Italy–on the ground, under the ground, and now on the Sea!
Imagine walking through the excavated ruins of Pompeii, destroyed by the Vesuvius volcano in the year 79 CE, as a way of “experiencing” what a Roman city, just outside of Rome and Naples, was like in the first century. Or walking on the Acropolis near Mars Hill and where Paul confronted the Platonic and Stoic philosophers of his day—on the very steps where Plato, Aristotle, and Zeno once taught. Or visiting the excavated city of ancient Corinth, with its Temple, markets, and streets where Paul spent nearly two years establishing what became his most important group of Christ followers. Or the incredible ruins of Ephesus, and the theater where Paul came close to being killed by a mob of citizens who saw him as a threat to their patron deity Artemis. All these and much more—including the islands of Cyprus, Rhodes, and Crete, where Paul landed on his various travels by sea to Asia, Greece, and Italy. We included Santorini, which like Pompeii, was destroyed by volcanic eruption of Thera in the 1500s BCE—where we will explore the spectacularly preserved ruins of Akrotiri which has been often called “the Bronze Age Pompeii.”
The cruise includes six lectures focused on Paul in the very settings that we are exploring on our days at sea between stops—see the topics below. All participants will receive a special “Guide to the Sites,” prepared by Dr. Tabor that is geared specifically to the places and topics we will be covering. On this tour Paul and his world will come alive as never before and I assure you the lectures on this cruise, correlated with what we are seeing, will be transforming. We are limiting our group to a decent size to allow maximum interaction between us all. Space is limited so we encourage you to sign up soon to hold your place. Please note that the price includes airfare from New York—so we can all travel together to Rome—as well as amazing meals and entertainment on board, and all other costs of the tours. You can find full details on the itinerary, costs, and how to register at this link: https://biblicalarchaeology.org/med4jt