This movie requires Flash Player 8. Download Flash Player 8

 
Issue Features
  
View this issue online as it looks in print
Discovery Magazine 12/1/2014

A Jerusalem Valley to Avoid

by  AP Staff

Today, Gehenna Valley is a beautiful place. In the 1st century A.D., however, it was full of garbage, rotting items, and fire.

In the Bible, walls and gates often were used for protection against all sorts of bad things. In fact, walls were even used to separate a city’s inhabitants from disease and its own trash, as well as other things that cause a city to be dirty and smelly. In Jerusalem, it was no different. If the people in Jerusalem had kept their garbage inside the walls, the city soon would have been overrun with smelly, dirty trash.

To avoid such a mess, the people of Jerusalem took their trash outside the walls to a place called “the Valley of the Sons of Hinnom.” It was also known as “Gehenna.” At one time, Gehenna was a fine place to live, but eventually some began to use it as a place to offer human sacrifices to the false god Molech. In the seventh century B.C., King Josiah put an end to such wickedness in this Jerusalem valley by “defiling” it and making it uninhabitable (2 Kings 23:10).

Eventually, the Jews began to throw their dirty garbage and dead things into this valley. In order to get rid of the garbage they set it on fire. Gehenna was a place of rotten smells, ugly sights, and uncomfortable heat. (If you lived in Jerusalem during the time of Jesus, you would not have wanted to perform the chore of taking out the trash!)

Jesus used this horrible place to explain to people the horror of being lost eternally. In Mark 9:45, Jesus said: “It is better for you to enter life lame, rather than having two feet, to be cast into hell, into the fire that shall never be quenched.” In the original language, Jesus used the word Gehenna. People in Jerusalem understood His point, because they knew how bad Gehenna was. Jesus used their knowledge of this rotten, smelly, burning place to explain how terrible hell will be. He then reminded them of the fact that God does not want anyone to go to hell. In fact, the Bible tells us that “God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).




Copyright © 2014 Apologetics Press, Inc. All rights reserved.

*Please keep in mind that Discovery articles are written for 3rd-6th graders.

This document may be copied, on the condition that it will not be republished in print unless otherwise stated below, and will not be used for any commercial purpose, as long as the following stipulations are observed: (1) Apologetics Press must be designated as the original publisher; (2) the specific Apologetics Press Web site URL must be noted; (3) any references, footnotes, or endnotes that accompany the article must be included with any written reproduction of the article; (4) textual alterations of any kind are strictly forbidden; (5) Some illustrations (e.g., photographs, charts, graphics, etc.) are not the intellectual property of Apologetics Press and as such cannot be reproduced from our site without consent from the person or organization that maintains those intellectual rights; (6) serialization of written material (e.g., running an article in several parts) is permitted, as long as the whole of the material is made available, without editing, in a reasonable length of time; (7) articles, excepting brief quotations, may not be offered for sale or included in items offered for sale; and (8) articles may be reproduced in electronic form for posting on Web sites pending they are not edited or altered from their original written content and that credit is given to Apologetics Press, including the web location from which the articles were taken. Further, documents may not be copied without source statements (title, author, journal title), and the address of the publisher and owner of rights, as listed below.

For catalog, samples, or further information, contact:

Apologetics Press
230 Landmark Drive
Montgomery, Alabama 36117
U.S.A.
Phone (334) 272-8558

http://www.apologeticspress.org

Web Store

Discovery 1 Year Subscription

This is just what your children or grandchildren need to offset the evolutionary, humanistic teaching they often receive from public schools, television, secular magazines, and other sources.

Featured Audio

Listen

Click the following link to visit our Multimedia section.

Featured Audio