One of these peaks, the Quarantana, is supposed to be the "high mountain" from which the Tempter showed Jesus the "kingdoms of the world."
These broad mountain-shoulders, falling steeply away to the west, clad in the emerald robe of early spring; this immense gulf at our feet, four thousand feet below us, a huge trough of gray and yellow, through which the dark-green ribbon of the Jordan jungle, touched with a few silvery gleams of water, winds to the blue basin of the Dead Sea; those scarred and wrinkled hills rising on the other side, the knotted brow of Quarantana, the sharp cone of Sartoba, the distant peak of Mizpeh, the long line of Judean, Samarian, and Galilean summits, Olivet, and Ebal, and Gerizim, and Gilboa, and Tabor, rolling away to the northward, growing ever fairer with the promise of fertile valleys between them and rich plains beyond them, and fading at last into the azure vagueness of the highlands round the Lake of Galilee.
One great cliff called Quarantana is now full of caves cut out of the face of the rock by men who have hoped to win heaven by suffering as Jesus did. Jesus was thinking thinking, His human nature being full of hopes, fears, and prayers; His divine nature being full of strength, promise, comfort. He did not think of food when He came, and there was none to be found.
"This is my Beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased" what meant these words? And still, no answer came to that cry of His soul which sought in vain for a freeing of that riddle. And still on and on He pressed, until at last He mounted the steep sides of the barren forbidding mountain of Quarantana, beyond which He felt that His struggle was to begin.
The path ascended along the brink of a deep gorge, at the bottom of which a little stream foamed over the rocks. The high, bleak summits towards which we were climbing, are considered by some Biblical geographers to be Mount Quarantana, the scene of Christ's fasting and temptation.