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Gibeon and the High Place of Worship (Nebi Samwil)


Jerusalem from Gibeon


The High Place of Gibeon is where the Tabernacle stood during the days of David and Solomon's early years.

Samuel would have met with Saul here and Solomon would have had his vision concerning wisdom here.

Looking to the southeast this picture show how the city of Jerusalem, the Temple and the Mt. of Olives could be seen from this High Place of Worship.

In the Bible:
1 Kings 3:4, 2Ch.1:2-6, Solomon goes to Gibeon to offer sacrifices at this most important high place and the Lord appeared to him in a dream. Solomon asks for wisdom;
The tabernacle and the bronze altar were here after they were salvaged from the Philistines destruction at Shiloh
Gibeah, Gibeah of God, Gibeon, High Place

Also called Nabi Samwil which means “prophet Samuel” since tradition says that Samuel’s tomb is here inside a mosque. The Bible records that Samuel was buried in his hometown of Ramah. It is a high mountain 2,919 feet above sea level (half a mile) 2.5 miles north of Jerusalem.  Byzantines built a monastery here to serve pilgrims visiting the Holy Land.

This was the site that the Crusaders first viewed Jerusalem in 1099 AD, so  they called this ancient high place the “Mountain of Joy.”

1Chr.21:29, The tabernacle and the bronze altar were here after they were salvaged from the Philistines destruction at Shiloh for is says,

  • The tabernacle of the Lord, which Moses had made in the desert, and the altar of burnt offering were at that time on the high place at Gibeon. David could not go before it to inquire of God, because he was afraid of the sword of the angel of the Lord.” (1Ch.21:29)
  • “After David had constructed buildings for himself in the City of David, he prepared a place for the ark of God and pitched a tent for it (1 Chr.15:1) …”David left Asaph and his associates before the ark of the covenant of the Lord (in Jerusalem) to minister there regularly, according to each day’s requirements.” (1Chr.16:37)
  • “David left Zadok the priest and his fellow priests before the tabernacle of the Lord at the high place in Gibeon to present burnt offerings to the Lord on the altar of burnt offering regularly, morning and evening, in accordance with everything written in the Law.” (1 Chr.16:39-40)

In the Bible:
Joshua 9
, Gibeonites deceive Joshua;  
2 Samuel 2:12, “Abner son of Ner, together with the men of Ish-Bosheth son of Saul, left Mahanaim and went to Gibeon. Joab son of Zeruiah and David’s men went out and met them at the pool of Gibeon. One group sat down on one side of the pool and one group on the other side. Then Abner said to Joab, ‘Let’s have some of the young men get up and fight hand to hand in front of us.’ “
Jeremiah 28:1
, The false prophet Haniah who opposed Jeremiah was from Gibeon;
Jeremiah 41:11-12, Jeremiah was delivered from Babylonian captivity at the Pool of Gibeon;
Neh.3:7; 7:25
, 95 men return to Gibeon from Babylon and help rebuld Jerusalem’s walls.

Gibeon, the home of the Gibeonites This is the home of the Hivites or the Gibeonites, who deceived Joshua. James Pritchard excavated Gibeon (1956-62) finding 63 wine cellars from 600-700 BC. He also located a stepped tunnel with 93 steps leading to a water spring. Also excavated was a shaft 40 feet in diameter and 35 feet deep which may be “the Pool of Gibeon” mentioned in 2 Samuels 2 men of David and General Joab (Judah) met General Abner’s men (Israel). Gibeon sets on the main road that connects the coastal plain with the Hill Country.


The distance between the High Place of Gibeon (or, Nabi Samwil) and the
Old City Jerusalem
is about
7 miles.

See the google map link

View Larger Map ...... Go to the link HERE  
Looking to the east from the High Place of Gibeon we can see Saul's city of Gibeah and Samuel's city of Ramah.

Looking to the south of the High Place of Gibeon we can see the remains of the city of Gibeon and the top of the hill called the High Place.

The tabernacle would have stood at the High Place after the destruction of Shiloh and Nob and before the Temple was built in Jerusalem.




Galyn looking down on the city of Gibeon to the south of the High Place.The Canaanite inhabitants of the city of Gibeon, called the Gibeonites, traveled just a few miles to the east to make a treaty with Joshua at Gilgal.

On the very windy top Toni holds a marker and her hat.

Thanks, Toni!


For more photos of the High Place of Gibeon or Nabi Samwill go to:

For more photos and facts concerning the city of Gibeon go to:

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