The metaphor is said to have been derived from the fact that the valley was used as a dump for the city’s rubbish and, as a consequence, fires were continually burning there. We cannot find any reference in the Mishnah to support this assertion. However, that the association between the Valley of Hinnom and the underworld was not merely a Christian one is made clear from early Rabbinic writings from the early Christian era, such as: “The disciples of Balaam, the wicked, inherit Gehenna and go down to the pit of destruction, as it is written: ‘The shameless are for Gehenna and the shamefast for the garden of Eden’” (Mishnah, Avot 5:19, 20).