The Jordan River and the river valley are important locations in both the Old and New Testaments. It's especially important to the Jewish and Christian people.
Geography of the Jordan
The river is a river in the Middle East that starts north, in the mountains of Lebanon. It flows into the Dead Sea. Bible writers talk about it many times. They report it in the story of Joshua, who led the Israelites across the Jordan into Canaan. John the Baptist baptized Jesus in the Jordan.
The Jordan River valley is a lush green area that is surrounded by desert. It's famous for its fertile land and beautiful scenery. Bible writers called it the land of milk and honey. This is because God told Moses that he would lead the Israelites to a land "where milk and honey flow like rivers" (Exodus 3:8, Casual English Bible).
Jordan River scenes in the Bible
The Jordan River valley is home to other important biblical sites, including Jericho. That's the city famous for its walls that came tumbling down in Joshua's time. The northern river valley is also home to the Mount of Beatitudes, where Jesus gave the Sermon on the Mount. And in that same valley, on the Sea of Galilee, is where the Bible writers report that Jesus walked on water and calmed the storm.
The Casual English Bible describes the river as "the most famous river in the Bible." It says that when Joshua led the Israelites across the river and into the Promised Land "walking in the water of the Jordan River symbolized the people stepping out in faith and trusting God to keep his promise." The Bible says God stopped the Jordan River during flood sea, which allowed the Israelites to cross. Israelites are the ancient ancestors of today's Jewish people.