Mountains often became sacred sites for God to interact with his people. This was true because it was often thought that if God resided in the heavens (skies), then going to the highest geographical point would increase proximity to God.
We see this interaction all throughout scripture. Ezekiel mentions that part of our garden experience was that we stood with God on his holy mountain (Ez. 28:13-15). Abraham ascends into the mountains to sacrifice his son Isaac when God speaks to him and prophesies of the future sacrifice that would be made because of Abraham’s faith (Gen. 22:1-14). Moses would encounter the glory of God and receive instruction from him on how God’s people were to worship (Ex. 19). Elijah would hide in the cleft of a mountain until the might of God was brought to a soft whisper (1 Kgs. 19:8-18).
This theme continues in the New Testament. Jesus would often ascend mountains to be alone and pray (Jn. 6:15, Mt. 14:23, Lk. 6:12) and it was on a mountain that Jesus was transfigured and God was with him (Mt. 17, Mk. 9:2-8, Lk. 9:28-36). But there is a final mountain mentioned in Revelation 21-22 where an angel brings the apostle John to the peak and shows him the city of God.
Here he sees the city of God descending out of heaven to be with God. The city is descending into the valley and there in the center is God sitting on his throne. Flowing out of that throne is the river of life, and it is feeding the trees of life that we had abandoned. John sees a restored garden where God is now physically and spiritually with us again.
We are reminded through Advent not only of when God came to be with us in Jesus, and how God is with us through the Holy Spirit, but how we are day by day anticipating that great event when God will be with us in the new heavens and new earth where hope, peace, joy, and love will find their final fulfillment; so that what we believe about tomorrow, will ultimately change how we live today.