The 2 mile (3½ kilometers) long Mount of Olives is a flattened ridge series located just a few hundred yards (meters) east of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. It rises over 200 feet (60 meters) above the Kidron Valley which separates those two very significant places. (see also Bible Places)
The Mount of Olives was the place where numerous events of Bible History occurred. Many of the most important people of the Bible walked upon it sooner or later.
The Old Testament
King David fled over the Mount of Olives to escape from Absalom's rebellion (2 Samuel 15:30). After King Solomon became corrupt, he built pagan "high places" there (1 Kings 11:7). Later, King Josiah destroyed Solomon's idolatrous altars, by which time it had become known as the Hill of Corruption (2 Kings 23:13-14). Ezekiel had his vision of The Lord and the flying cherubim above it (Ezekiel 11:22-23). The people gathered olive branches there for the first Feast of Tabernacles after their return from The Babylonian Exile (Nehemiah 8:15).
The New Testament
Jesus regularly went up onto the Mount of Olives (Luke 22:39). He often traveled over it on His way to Bethany to visit His friend Lazarus. His famous Olivet prophecy is named after it (Matthew 24:1-51). The Triumphal Entry of Jesus riding on a Donkey and her colt into Jerusalem took place over and down the Mount of Olives (Luke 19:28-44). Jesus prayed with His disciples there just before His arrest That Fateful Night (Luke 22:39-46). Jesus was arrested there, during which Peter struck the servant of the high priest with a sword and cut off his ear (Luke 22:49-51). Jesus appeared to the disciples on the Mount of Olives after His Resurrection, and He ascended into heaven from there (Acts 1:1-12).
The Mount of Olives In The Future
"After He said this, He was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid Him from their sight. They were looking intently up into the sky as He was going, when suddenly two men dressed in white stood beside them. 'Men of Galilee,' they said, 'why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, Who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen Him go into heaven.'" (Acts 1:9-11) (see The Return Of Jesus Christ)
"At that time the sign of The Son of Man will appear in the sky (see Signs In The Heavens), and all the nations of the earth will mourn. They will see The Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky, with power and great glory. And He will send His angels with a loud trumpet call and they will gather His elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other." (Matthew 24:30-31)
"Then The Lord will go out and fight against those nations, as He fights in the day of battle. On that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, east of Jerusalem, and the Mount of Olives will be split in two (see Earthquake!) from east to west, forming a great valley, with half of the mountain moving north and half moving south. You will flee by my mountain valley, for it will extend to Azel. You will flee as you fled from the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah. Then The Lord my God will come, and all the holy ones with Him. (Zechariah 14:3-5)
Fact Finder: During the Olivet prophecy, did Jesus Christ warn us that prior to His Return there would be many false "Christs" and false prophets in the world?
Matthew 24:4-5, 23-25
Also see our Prophecy section.