The history of Israel has always been a virtual history. Until recently, historical debate in the field has confined itself almost entirely to a discussion about alternative fictional scenarios for the past: the patriarchs and the conquest stories as an alternative to the exodus and settlement narratives; Moses or Ezra; Josiah or John Hyrcanus. Evidence, when it has been of interest to the field at all, has ever been in regard to any given scenario's persuasiveness. The story of David on the Mount of Olives is used as an example of the theological world at stake in the Bible's virtual history; particularly in regard to the motif of Yahweh as 'the lord of history'. Recognition of such virtuality in the biblical tradition aids the contemporary historian of intellectual history. The story of Jesus on the Mount of Olives is used to illustrate this.