Christianity Sections

Introduction Beliefs Comparison Charts Denominations Facts History Holidays Overview Biographies Practices and Rituals Symbols Texts Timeline

New and Featured in Christianity Section

Ten Plagues of the Exodus

History of Christmas Trees

New and Featured On Religion Facts

Illuminati

Jehovah's Witnesses and Mormonism Comparison Chart

Religion Facts offers downloadable charts. Click for more information.

Related books


Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church

Cross & Livingstone


Mere Christianity

C.S. Lewis


Introduction to Christianity

Joseph Ratzinger (Pope Benedict XVI)


Christian Theology

Alister McGrath


Christian Beliefs

Wayne Grudem


Catechism of the Catholic Church

U.S. Catholic Church


A Summary of Christian History

Robert Andrew Baker


Jesus Among Other Gods

Ravi Zacharias


Article Info
published: 3/31/13

Gethsemane in the Bible



Gethsemane in the New Testament

judea
Judean Hills

Gethsemane is mentioned (Mt 26:36; Mk 14:32) as a place (Grk: chorion), margin "enclosed piece of ground," to which Jesus and the disciples retired after the last supper; in Jn 18:1 it is described as a "garden" (Grk: kepos), while Lk (22:40) simply says "place" (Grk: topos).

From Jn 18:1 it is evident that it was across the Kidron, and from Lk 22:39, that it was on the Mount of Olives. Very possibly (Lk 21:37; 22:39) it was a spot where Jesus habitually lodged when visiting Jerusalem. The owner--whom conjecture suggests as Mary the mother of Mark--must have given Jesus and His disciples special right of entry to the spot. Tradition, dating from the 4th century, has fixed on a place some 50 yds. East of the bridge across the Kidron as the site. In this walled-in enclosure once of greater extent, now primly laid out with garden beds, by the owners--the Franciscans--are eight old olive trees supposed to date from the time of our Lord.


They are certainly old, they appeared venerable to the traveler Maundrell more than two centuries ago, but that they go back to the time claimed is impossible, for Josephus states (BJ, VI, i, 1) that Titus cut down all the trees in the neighborhood of Jerusalem at the time of the siege.

Some 100 yards farther North is the "Grotto of the Agony," a cave or cistern supposed to be the spot "about a stone's cast" to which our Lord retired (Lk 22:41).

The Greeks have a rival garden in the neighborhood, and a little higher up the hill is a large Russian church.

The traditional site may be somewhere near the correct one, though one would think too near the public road for retirement, but the contours of the hill slopes must have so much changed their forms in the troubled times of the first and second centuries, and the loose stone walls of such enclosures are of so temporary a character, that it is impossible that the site is exact.

Sentiment, repelled by the artificiality of the modern garden, tempts the visitor to look for a more suitable and less artificial spot farther up the valley.

There is today a secluded olive grove with a ruined modern olive press amid the trees a half-mile or so farther up the Kidron Valley, which must far more resemble the original Gethsemane than the orthodox site.

 

 

Recommended for You


More Religious Texts


World Religions - Main pages


Christian writings

Bahai writings

Buddhism writings

Hinduism writings

Islam writings

Jehovah's Witnesses writings

Judaism writings

Mormonism writings

Taoism writings

Buddhism

Christianity

Confucianism

Hinduism

Islam

Jehovah's Witnesses

Judaism

Mormonism



Source:

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, which is in the public domain.