Sea of Galilee



A map of the Sea of Galilee.

The Sea of Galilee is a lake in the region of Galilee.  In the New Testament the Sea of Galilee is sometimes called the lake of Genneseret and the lake of Tiberias.



Satellite photograph of the Sea of Galilee

The modern lake is about 12.5 miles long by 7 miles wide at its widest point.  In the Old Testament, the Sea of Galilee was called "the sea of Chinnereth" (Numbers 34:11; Deuteronomy 3:17; Joshua 13:27; 19:35).  The word Chinnereth probably comes from the Hebrew word kinor meaning "lyre-shaped", because the Sea of Galilee has a lyre shaped look.  The following are ancient Jewish coins with lyre images.





Ancient Jewish coins with images of lyres.




The Sea of Galilee is part of the great rift valley that extends from Lebanon to central Africa.  To its surface, the lake is 700 feet below sea level. 



The hills on the horizon are located on the southwest shore of the Sea of Galilee.  At the base of those hills is a a fertile plain known anciently as the land of Gennesaret  (Matthew 14:34; Mark 6:53).  One of the villages in the land of Gennesaret was Magdala, the village of Mary Magdalene. 




The land of Gennesaret from Mt. Arbel.



The Sea of Galilee looking from north to south.



Capernaum (1975)




Fisherman on the Sea of Galilee (1979)