Glimpses of Israel - Jaffa

by Joseph Hunting

There are few places in our space-age, computerized world, where one can put back the clock and travel down the corridors of time to the dawn of history.

Jaffa is one such place. The excavations by Israel's archaeologists have revealed levels dating back to the Canaanite period before Joshua led the children of Israel into the Promised Land.

It was to the port of ancient Jaffa that the great rafts of cedar logs were brought from Lebanon. From Jaffa they were hauled overland for the construction of Solomon's Temple.

It was from the ancient port of Jaffa that Jonah fled from the presence of the Lord. The rocks of Andromeda still visible in the ancient harbour are reminders of the ancient Greek legend, and the narrow streets of the old city of Jaffa are very much the same as they were when the apostle Peter set out on his journey to the home of Cornelius, a Roman centurion.

And now Jaffa, the mother of modern Tel Aviv, is the silent witness of the spectacular development of this playground of the Mediterranean.

Jaffa was the scene of one of the miracles associated with the early messianic movement in Israel. Tabitha, a woman famous for her ministry to the poor died. Her friends sent for Peter "who kneeled down and prayed; and turning to the body said, Tabitha arise ... and he gave her his hand and lifted her up, and when he had called the saints and widows, presented her alive. And it was known throughout all Joppa; and many believed in the Lord."