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Kidron Valley

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Kidron Valley


Basic Information

Location 31.787222, 35.319722
Country Israel
City Jerusalem

General Information

Open to visitors yes
Need appointment no
Handicap accessibility no
Geographical Coordinates 31.78722,35.31972


The Kidron Valley (classical transliteration, Cedron, from Hebrew: נחל קדרון‎, Naḥal Qidron; also Qidron Valley; Arabic: وادي الجوز‎, Wadi al-Joz) is the valley on the eastern side of The Old City of Jerusalem which features significantly in the Bible. An ephemeral stream flows through it with occasional flash floods in the rainy winter months.

The Kidron Valley runs along the eastern wall of The Old City of Jerusalem, separating the Temple Mount from the Mount of Olives. It then continues east through the Judean Desert, towards the Dead Sea, descending 4000 feet along its 20 mile course. The settlement Kedar, located on a ridge above the valley, is named after it. The neighborhood of Wadi Al-Joz bears the valley's Arabic name.

At one time, the water of the Gihon Spring flowed through the valley, but it was diverted by Hezekiah's tunnel to supply water to Jerusalem.

Contemporary There is a controversial proposal to reconstruct part of the valley in a Palestinian neighborhood of East Jerusalem and turn it into a park to be called the Garden of the King.


Kidron Valley in eschatology The Bible calls the Valley "Valley of Jehoshaphat - Emek Yehoshafat" (Hebrew: עמק יהושפט‎), meaning "The valley where God will judge." It appears in Jewish eschatologic prophecies, which include the return of Elijah, followed by the arrival of the Messiah, and also the war of Gog and Magog and Judgment day. According to the prophecies, in the war of Gog and Magog, the two major coalitions of gentile nations will join forces against the Jewish state in Israel. Israel will be overwhelmed and conquered, and the last stronghold will be Jerusalem, which will also be conquered by the gentiles. After the gentiles finally succeed and destroy Israel, God will commence Judgement. God will save Israel and battle "with diseases, rain, fire and stones" against all the gentile nations that set to destroy Israel, and will fill the Land of Israel with their bodies which will take the Jews 7 months to bury all. In the prophecies, it says he will bring the gentiles down to Emek-Yehoshafat (Kidron Valley), and then he will judge all of the gentiles for all of the wrong they have done against Israel since the beginning of time, and only the gentiles that helped Israel will be spared.

It should be noted, though, that not all scholars agree with the traditional view that the Kidron Valley is the location of the Valley of Jehoshaphat. Biblical commentator Adam Clarke maintains this view, claiming that the Valley of Judgment is a symbolic place. Kidron Valley was not associated with the Valley of Jehoshaphat until the 4th century AD.

Tombs The valley is also known for its tombs most notably the Tomb of the Blessed Virgin Mary which is revered by both Christians and Muslims. In addition, it is well known for Jewish tombs, including the Pillar of Absalom, the Tomb of Benei Hezir, and the Tomb of Zechariah. There are many Muslim tombs present, as well as Christian holy places including the tombs of Saint James, and Josaphat.

Other scriptural significance According to the Tanakh, King David fled through the valley during the rebellion of Absalom. According to the New Testament Jesus crossed the valley many times traveling between Jerusalem and Bethany. Catholic Encyclopedia article. The valley contains the Garden of Gethsemane, where Jesus was arrested.

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