Having eaten the Paschal meal somewhere in the city (Luke 22:10), Jesus ‘went forth with his disciples across the Kidron Valley, where there was a garden’ (John 18:1) on the Mount of Olives called Gethsemane (Mark 14:26, 32). The place was known to Judas, ‘for Jesus often met there with his disciples’ (John 18:2), perhaps to take a rest (while reflecting on the experiences of the day) before starting the climb up the steep steps en route to Bethany. Jesus knew his life to be in danger (John 11:8, 16); he suspected Judas oftreachery (Mark 14:17-21). On his way up the Kidron Valley he could not have avoided seeing the tombs in the bright moonlight. Awareness of the imminence of death struck him with great force; he had to stop and be alone for a moment because a decision had to be made. His enemies would come from the city, but ten minutes’ fast walking would bring him to the top of the Mount of Olives with the open desert before him. Escape would be easy; he could postpone the inevitable. Only in prayer could he find the answer to the agonizing question of whether to stand or retreat.
Source: The Holy Land by Jerome Murphy- O’Connor