In spring it becomes a torrent, today's river is depleted by water taken by modern pumping stations for cities and irrigation
For today’s reading there are historical (standing stones) and geographic (the Jordan river) information that is important, and perhaps better communicated by pictures and words, rather than words alone. So here are some relevant pictures, with brief captions…
Even today the Jordan valley has (in places) dense bush, making it a strange and dangerous place for people more used to dry pastureland. Photo Wikimedia.
Ancient monoliths (like these from Tel Gezer in the Judean Shephelah) are still impressive. Photo Tim Bulkeley
They were often erected in rows or circles, they still cause us to wonder why they were raised.