sea that borders Europe, North Africa, Asia Minor, and Palestine.
The name "Mediterranean"
means "middle of the earth," and it lies at the center of the
In Old Testament
times the Philistines built
cities along the Mediterranean coast in southern Palestine. King
Hiram of Tyre sent shipments of timber along the Mediterranean coast for
Solomon's building projects.
The prophet Jonah tried to flee from
God by boarding a ship at the Palestinian port of Joppa and was caught
in a storm at sea. The lack of good natural harbors, however, meant
that Israel never became a seafaring people.
In New Testament
times Herod the Great created an artificial
harbor at Caesarea. A Roman centurion named Cornelius became a Christian
at Caesarea, and there were also Christians at Joppa (Acts 9:36; 10:1).
Paul sailed on the Mediterranean when traveling to Cyprus and from Greece
to Palestine. After being imprisoned at Caesarea, Paul made a voyage
during which he was shipwrecked near Malta before arriving at Rome.