Important “Mounts” or “Mountains” of Jerusalem.
Sometimes it’s a little confusing to understand which mountain is being talked about in the Bible. Let’s take Mount Moriah, for instance. Broadly speaking, it is the ridge of hills between Mount Zion on the west and the Mount of Olives on the east.
The Mount of Olives is also called Mount Olivet. And it’s a pretty important place for two reasons:
First, it is the place where our Lord’s physical presence here on earth ended with His Ascension into heaven:
Acts 1:9 And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight.
Acts 1:10 And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel;
Acts 1:11 Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.
Acts 1:12 Then returned they unto Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is from Jerusalem a sabbath day's journey. KJV
And, as for the disciples, rather than watching Him ascend into the sky until He was no longer visible, a cloud enveloped Him and when that cloud moved on because of the winds or it simply dissipated, He could no longer be seen.
I think that it’s a great play on words when the two angels said…why are you standing there looking up at the sky? Why are you standing there with your finger stuck in your ear? Go on about your business. They seemed to be so nonchalant about the entire matter, as if it was something that they were used to seeing…the appearance and dis-appearance of a spiritual body.
And they also said something else that was very important: He’s coming back in this exact same manner and that’s how He will return to us. That’s the second important reason.
Zechariah 14:4 And his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south. KJV
This mountain will explode by reason of an earthquake, it will be the much-looked-for Day of the Lord and we will all change from these earthly bodies into our spiritual bodies. Instantly.
Then we have the Temple Mount and Mount Zion. These are both one and the same. They make up the complete area upon which both Temples were built and all the smaller structures.
The first one built by King Solomon and the second by King Herod, which really was a rebuilding of the first because of the ruins that were left and it was also expanded then as well.
So, the Temple Mount refers to the entire top of the hill (ridge) and all the structures. Our Lord’s crucifixion was done just a few hundred yards away from this area.
Mount Zion refers to a conglomeration of sites, ALL of which are contained on the Temple Mount, but Scripturally, it began to be associated with the first Temple of Solomon, being built on the Eastern Hill.
Throughout the centuries, and up to today, the term Mount Zion, refers to the Western Hill and that’s due primarily to the expansion of the city of Jerusalem over the years.
There are many other mounts or mountains mentioned in Scripture but the ones that we’ve been concerned with here are the most confusing.
At the moment this flesh and blood body expires, we are going to be presented with a vision of things that we could NEVER imagine in this life. And it’s probably good that we’ll be in spiritual bodies at that time because I don’t know if my ‘ole heart could endure what my eyes will see.
What a time to look foreword to. The prospect of seeing and being a part of this magnificently indescribable world should be more than enough reason to follow His Commandments, keep our souls free of sin through repentance, provided to us by our Lord’s death on the cross, and still be able to live a fruitful life as He wants us to.
We don’t know, individually, what we did in the previous age, whether we followed our Father or took up with Lucifer and his angels, but we have a God-given right to live according to His rules in this life and change any mistakes that we might have made back then.
We can enjoy this life without going into the depths of darkness, without breaking His laws. And understanding the whole picture, from the first heaven/earth age to the eternity, should make it a lot easier.
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___19 April 2017___
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