The City of Tiberias
Tiberias is the lowest city in the world as it is located 214 meters below sea level. The city was built by the Herod Antipas in 17th year CE on the western shore of the Sea of Galilee. Herod named the city in honor of the Roman Emperor Tiberius. The city was built near hot springs with healing properties. These hot mineral springs are the greatest attraction of Tiberias to this day.
The history of Tiberias goes back to the times of Jesus and the Supreme Court of the Jewish Sages (Sanhedrin). Therefore this city is valued both by Christianity and Judaism.
Here, in 4th – 5th centuries of Common Era, the most important and holy Jewish texts were written. Tiberias became the center of Jewish scholarship and gained great importance. Today, Tiberias is one of the Four Holy Cities of Israel. The other three are Jerusalem, Safed and Hebron. Every year Tiberias attracts tens of thousands of people to visit the national shrine: the tombs of the Rambam (Rabbi Moshe Ben Maimon – Maimonides), Rabbi Yohanan Ben and Rabbi Akivah.
Most of the recorded in the New Testament miracles were performed by Jesus in the surrounding areas of Tiberias
At the south of Tiberias there is the Jordan River. This river is famous in the entire world as in its waters Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist. Thousands of Christian believers come to this Holy site to immerse in the Holy River Jordan waters.
In the northern part of the Sea of Galilee, near the ancient city of Capernaum, there is the Mount of Beatitudes, where Jesus held the Sermon on the Mount.
The city is located on the shores of the Sea of Galilee, also known as Lake Kinnereth and Lake Tiberias. This is the very same lake on whose waters walked Jesus as it is said in the New Testament. “Shortly before dawn Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake. When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost,” they said, and cried out in fear. But Jesus immediately said to them: “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.” Matthew 14:25-27
From the time of Jesus to the present days, Tiberias remains important for the believers of the entire world. Many churches were built in Tiberias and nearby areas. Such as the Greek Orthodox Church in the Old City of Tiberias, The Bread and Fish Church, The Church of St.Peter’s Primacy, The Church of Transfiguration.