Saturday, November 17, 2012

The Coming Temple

As I have said elsewhere, the reference to an earthly Temple in Revelation 11 cannot be used to say anything about the date of the prophecy's writing. I accept the traditional dating of the Apocalypse as 95 CE, which I think is consistent with scripture and history. Of course, if that is so, then what does the reference to an earthly temple mean in chapter 11? The most straightforward answer would be that at the time the prophecy envisions, there will be a Temple in Jerusalem.

There are Jews and Christians who are looking for a third Temple. Daniel's prophecies make one necessary at the advent of the final King of the North. Revelation 11 makes one necessary at the advent of the two witnesses, and 2 Thessalonians 2 makes one necessary at the advent of the man of lawlessness. Suffice it to say, these passages are speaking of the same thing--at the end of the age, when the Antichrist is here, there will be a Temple in Jerusalem.

If one walks back from that premise, it means that before the Antichrist can reach the epitome of his wickedness, the Jewish temple must be rebuilt. For that to happen the Jews will have to have control of the Temple Mount. For that to happen some kind of agreement would have to be reached with the Muslim powers that be in the area...

Though there is not one there now, make no mistake, in the days to come a temple will be in built in Jerusalem.  

6 comments:

  1. For that to happen the Jews will have to have control of the Temple Mount.

    Or perhaps not.

    I only find Martin's articles worth reading (he has since died).

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    1. Quite apart from the difficulty of taking a protege of Herbert Armstrong seriously, even if Martin were absolutely correct, his theories are inconsequential because they are not accepted by Jewish authorities. What matters is where the Jews think the Temple should be rebuilt and that is going to be at best (as far a southerly projection) on the site of Al Asqa.

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  2. Just to throw it out there but what do you think of the possibility of a misguided Hamas missile striking the mosque currently on the temple mount? Could tempt the Jews to think "Well it's blown up anyway" and take the temple mount by force. A peace agreement with antichrist is a given and could also result in a deal to allow ownership of the temple mount. It is difficult for me to consider the muslims willingly giving up that structure unless perhaps it's destroyed by their own hand and therefore useless. Just a thought.

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    1. I think destroyed by their own hand is a sensible thought, possibly after a conflict with a lot of collateral damage and bloodshed elsewhere (e.g. nuclear war with Iran). But then again, the precipitant may be a complete surprise.

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  3. The more I read posts such as this one, including the Jewish desire for a third Temple (and, of course, the news), the more credibility Dispensationalism seems to have (it is so very undermined and mocked by many scholars today).

    Anyway, while at work one Summer, an orthodox Jewish man came into the motel and asked me a couple of questions about use of the motel grounds. As we walked outside (I needed to show him something), I asked permission to ask him a personal, religious question. He hesitantly assented.

    I asked him if he thought the third Temple should be modeled after the measurements of the Ezekiel prophecy. He was shocked by my question. Grinning from ear to ear, he called out toward his wife: "This Goy is asking me about the third Temple!" He said most Gentiles could care less about such Jewish matters.

    He answered no, but realized that some have asked the same question, wondering what Ezekiel was going on about. He was certain, however, that a third Temple was to be constructed, and soon.

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    1. WB,
      We'll get you to come to the dark side yet! Though I'm not a dispensationalist per se, my eschatology is dispensationalesque. I think Romans 11 points that way strongly, and that apart from that perspective the Olivet Discourse and Daniel 11-12 would have to be considered false prophecies. I don't think any other view takes the Revelation seriously as well.

      Great story about your encounter with the Orthodox gentleman! Ezekiel's temple (and beyond) seem something so extensive that I think it will have to wait until the millennial reign of Christ (although I don't know what to make of the sacrificial descriptions). It is interesting that even when an Orthodox Jew saw Ezekiel's temple as unlikely here and now (as I do), he still was convinced of the coming third temple.

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Any comment in ill taste or not germane to the post may be deleted without warning. I am under no obligation to give anyone an opportunity to call me names or impugn my motives or integrity. If you can't play nice, go somewhere else and play.