Jesus on The Mount of Olives
There were several events throughout the biblical scriptures that place Jesus on the Mount of Olives also known as “Olivet” in the KJV (2 Samuel 15:30); (Acts 1:12). In (1 King 11:7) it is referred to as the “the Mount of Olives facing Jerusalem” which is a ridge that runs by the east side of Jerusalem, divided by the city walls of a ravine. The Olivet is the chosen place that has been revealed in the Bible to fulfill the future prophecy to come.
What happened on the Mount of Olives?
Let’s begin in the Old Testament, (2 Samuel) talks about the events that took place when David’s son Absalom took control of Jerusalem. King David and his household left on foot when they received a message telling them that Jerusalem joined Absalom on a conspiracy against David. In (2 Samuel 15:30) it states that David walked up the road that led to the Mount of Olives facing Jerusalem, weeping as he went. His head covered, and his feet were bare as a sign of mourning.
Those that were with David also covered their heads as they too wept on the way to Olivet. Shortly after that, King Solomon used the Mount of Olives for idol worship. “He built a high place for Chemosh which represents the vile god of Moab and another high place for Molek the wicked god of the Ammonites”(1 King 11:7). In (Ezekiel 11:23) it talks about a vision that Ezekiel had that places the glory of the Lord leaving Jerusalem and resting “ higher than the mountain east of it” which is Olivet.
As we approach the New Testament, where it indicates that Jesus went to the Temple in Jerusalem to teach during the day and at night he spent his time on the Mount of Olives (Luke 21:37) we see that Jesus often visited this place. In fact, it was customary for Jesus to go there to pray to his father. (Luke 22:39) In Luke, it indicates that he prayed to his father and told his disciples to pray to overcome temptation.
In verse 42 Jesus prayed to have the cup of suffering taken away from him. However, he also stated in his prayer “Yet I want your will, not mine.” The Bible records Jesus’ going to the Olivet three times before his crucifixion, each time something of great magnitude occurred.
Jesus’ visits the Olivet
On the first visit, Jesus explains and teaches his disciples the events that are to come before this natural world ends known as the Olivet Discourse (Matthew 24:1-25:46). You will find parallel passages in (Mark 13: 1-37) and (Luke 21:5-36). As Jesus explains the Olivet Discourse he answers his disciples’ questions about when this will take place, will there be any significant signs for us to know your return, or are there any signs to determine when the end of the world is upon us (Matthew 24:3).
Jesus’ teachings in (Matthew 24-25) explain the concerns of the future tribulation and the coming of Christ. The Discourse contains three parables for individuals that are waiting for Jesus to return. They consist of (Matthew 24:45-51) the faithful, sensible servant, (Matthew 25:1-13) the five wise bridesmaids, (Matthew 25:14-30) and the good servant who uses what they are given well; even more, will be given. On Jesus’ second visit to Olivet known as the Triumphal Entry.
Jesus sent two of his disciples ahead of him to Bethphage and Bethany to retrieve the donkey he rode that day, which was located on the east side of Olivet (Luke 19:29-30). As Jesus approached the road that led them down from the Olivet, his followers began singing and shouting praises as they followed in honor of all of the miracles that they witnessed (Luke 19:37).
While Jesus is slowly coming down the Mount of Olives, he sees the city ahead of him and begins to cry as he says in verse 42 “I wish even today that you will find the way of peace. However, now it is too late, and peace is hidden from you.” (Luke 19:41-44). Jesus third visit is the day that he was deceived and betrayed by one of his disciples called Judas.
It all started during the last Passover meal, Jesus took off his robe, wrapped a towel around his midsection, and poured water into a basin. As he washed his disciples’ feet, he exposed Judas as the disciple that will betray him (John 13:1-30). At the end of their meal, Jesus set a foundation on how to partake of the Lord Supper (Matthew 26:26-29). Then, he guided his disciples to the Garden of Gethsemane, located on the western side of Olivet.
There Jesus prayed distress and anguish as he waited for the day to come. In (Luke 22:44) it is recorded that “he was in agony of the spirit which caused his sweat fall to the ground like drops of blood.” In verse 43 God sent an angel to strengthen Jesus. As soon as Jesus was finished praying, Judas arrived with a lot of soldiers, Pharisees, the high priest, and servants.
Judas then walked over to Jesus and acknowledged him with a kiss. The disciples had their swords ready to defend Jesus, and one of them cut off the right ear of one of the men. Jesus said in verse 51 don’t fight anymore and healed the man’s ear. Then, Jesus was arrested and led down the Olivet towards the city. Following, the trials, crucifixion and resurrection, Jesus yet again stood on the Olivet.
He led his disciples towards Bethany raising his hands to bless them as he was lifted to heaven. At that moment, two angels appeared and told the disciples “Jesus who has been taken to heaven, will return in the same manner that you seen him go” (Acts 1:11). If you would like to learn more on this subject, look a little deeper into the verses mentioned as well as the verses surrounding them and the Mount of Olives.