IN connection with the history of the Jordan, the fords of the river have always been important. The first ford on the southern section of the Jordan, that is, below the Sea of Galilee, is about half a mile from the lake, where the ruins of the Roman bridge now lie. It was the means of communication between Tiberias and Gadara, and it was doubtless at this point that our Lord crossed when he went from Galilee to Judea "by the farther side of Jordan."

One of the best fords is at Succoth. At this point a barren, sandy island divides the channel, and with its bars on each side forms a ford, probably the one by which Jacob crossed with his family and his cattle, after his interview with Esau, on his return from the service of Laban. We read, too, that he made booths for his cattle at Succoth. This was a wise choice; for no other place in the great plain equals it in richness. This, too, is the "Beth-barah," "house or ford of passage," where the Israelites intercepted and slew the Midianites. Gideon passed here in his pursuit of the kings of Midian. He asked the people of Succoth for bread for himself and the people that followed him, as they were faint, but was refused with taunting words. 

On his return he tore the flesh of the principal men of the city with thorns and briers.

 Judges 8:10.It was probably here that the men of Gilead slew the Ephraimites. The men of Gilead fought the Ephraimites because they called them "fugitives of Ephraim," a term of reproach. "And the Gileadites took the passages of Jordan before the Ephraimites: and it was so, that when those Ephraimites which were escaped said, Let me go over, that the men of Gilead said unto him, Art thou an Ephraimite? If he said, Nay; then said they unto him, Say now Shibboleth; and he said Sibboleth: for he could not frame to pronounce it right. Then they took him, and slew him at the passages of Jordan; and there fell at that time of the Ephraimites forty and two thousand." 

Judges 12:5, 6.

The only other fords of note are those in the plains of Jericho, one above and one below the pilgrim's bathing-place.