In the Gospel the Baptism of Jesus is immediately followed by the account of the temptations: “and immediately the Spirit drove him out into the desert” (Mark 1,12); and “Jesus being full of the Holy Host, returned from the Jordan, and was led by the spirit into the desert” (Luke 4,1). We must remember that desert, as used in the N.T. means deserted, uninhabited. It was sufficient for Jesus to climb one of the mountains that surrounded the valley of the Jordan to be in the desert, “and he was with beasts” (Mark 1.13).
It is the common tradition of Christians that our Saviour underwent his fast of forty days near Jericho in one of the caves of this mountain. It is called Jebel Quruntul, the Arabic form of Quarantena (Forty). In 1874 the mountain was acquired by the Greek Orthodox, who in 1895 built a convent in front of the traditional Grotto where Jesus spent the 40 days of His fast, and where Satan came to tempt Him, saying: “If thou be the Son of God, command that those stones be made bread, Jesus answered and said: it is written, Not by bread alone doth man live, but in every word that proceedth from the mouth of God”. The quotation is from Deuteronomy 8.3, regarding the 40 years in the desert. God takes care of those who love Him, even when natural means seem to fail them.
Source: Guide to the Holy Land by Eugene Hoade