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In the prophetic
frenzy surrounding end time events, one of the most misunderstood and abused
items is that of the rebuilding of the third Temple in Jerusalem. Both Old and
New Testament scriptures point to the validity of such a Temple, yet its
nature, function, and precise timing are still not fully understood but only
given us in figurative and prophetic language.

Obviously, God reserves the
right to bring this mystery to full light in His own way and in His own time.
Yet, powerful forces are literally “pushing” in this direction, aggressively
attempting to fulfill these prophecies by the strength of man. Some are doing
so ignorantly, others sincerely trying to thus “expedite” the Lord’s return.
They are moving ahead in their preparations and are attracting some well
meaning, though misguided, Christian support and funding.

For the sake of
the elect, in light of the powerful deceptions that are present in our
generation, and in order to help the Bride of Messiah focus on the only One who
deserves our complete attention and devotion, I will shortly address this often
misunderstood issue. Remember that what I write is but a partial revelation in
itself, and that more understanding and insight will undoubtedly be added from
others in the coming days.


On July 29, 2001,
the notorious ninth day of the month of Av according to the Hebrew calendar,
the very date on which both Temples in Jerusalem were violently destroyed by
pagan powers nearly five hundred years apart, a group of well meaning zealots
carried out a symbolic ceremony of cornerstone laying in a parking lot next to
the Western Wall in Jerusalem.

That four and a half ton marble stone was to
symbolize the beginning of the third Temple construction and prophetically
point in its direction. Fortunately, the Israeli government did not permit this
ceremony to take place on top of Temple Mt. as was originally requested by the
sponsors, thus avoiding an all out eruption of violent sentiments throughout
the Muslim world.

Much effort, sacrifice, and funding are invested in these,
and other related labors, all pointing toward the rebuilding of a third Jewish
Temple on Mt. Moriah instead of, or next to, the Islamic shrines and the Dome
of the Rock. One does not need to be an expert on Middle East affairs to
imagine the uncontrollable Islamic rage that such an act would stir in the
present explosive atmosphere. Are these Jewish and Christian zealots in the
right theology? The right spirit? The right time?

>From my perspective, the
only cornerstone that could be laid that would make a positive difference today
for Israel and for the nations is Jesus the Messiah Himself. Any other emphasis
will only lead to confusion and possibly deception. Worse yet, mere human
attempts to have the physical Temple rebuilt in Jerusalem prior to the Lord’s
second coming are in dangerous proximity to the spirit and agenda of the

The fact is that the first Temple was built by divine
initiative according to a heavenly design, and was erected by carefully chosen
vessels under highly anointed conditions. Likewise, the second Temple, which
was actually a restoration of the first, was repaired and reinstated again by
select and anointed individuals whose credentials and labors are recorded in
scripture. Is the modern day initiative we witness today able to stand these
criteria as its proponents seek to build God’s third Temple in His City?


For one reason, such a temple,
if rebuilt, could in fact keep seeking Jewish souls from placing their hopes
for redemption on the Messiah alone by drawing their attention and devotion to
a resurrected religious system. Even traditional Jewry recognizes that the
Temple can potentially be “antichristos” (replacing the true Christ / Messiah),
and that an empty religious system of works is an abomination to the

Such anti-religious divine intolerance is revealed in Isaiah’s cry,
saying, “‘What are your multiplied sacrifices to me?’ Says the Lord. ‘I have
had enough of burnt offerings of rams, and the fat of fed cattle. And I take no
pleasure in the blood of bulls, lambs, or goats… Bring your worthless offerings
no longer, incense is an abomination to Me… I hate your new moon festivals and
your appointed feasts, they have become a burden to Me…

“’So when you spread
out your hands in prayer, I will hide my eyes from you… Wash yourselves, make
yourselves clean; remove the evil of your deeds from my sight. Cease to do
evil, learn to do good; seek justice, reprove the ruthless; defend the orphan,
plead for the widow.’” (Isaiah 1: 11-17 NASB)
And David, in his
heart-rending cry for cleansing and renewal from his sin, reached deep into the
heart of God when he prayed, “For Thou dost not delight in sacrifice, otherwise
I would give it; Thou art not pleased with burnt offering. The sacrifices of
God are a broken spirit; a broken and a contrite heart, O God, Thou wilt not
despise.” (Psalms 51:16, 17 NASB) In other words, spiritual life is not the
product of religious works or temple sacrifices, no matter how profound and
impressive; rather true holiness and righteousness are the fruit of a humble,
crucified life which drinks deeply from the fountain of the Son of God Himself.

And as much as hastening the Lord’s return, for New Testament believers,
Peter said,  “Repent therefore and return, that your sins may be wiped away, in
order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord; and that
He may send Jesus, the Christ appointed for you, whom heaven must receive until
the period of restoration of all things about which God spoke by the mouth of
His holy prophets from ancient time.” (Acts 3:19-21 NASB) How do we hasten the
Lord’s return then? By repentance; a genuine return to God, His word, and His


It was the Temple issue that ultimately
pushed Stephen’s hearers to the point of murdering the first martyr of the
Faith. Enduring Stephen’s entire discourse, which was built around the theme of
God’s dwelling place among His people Israel, it was his final quote from
Isaiah which they could not bear as the prophetic rebuke hit home.

says the Lord, ‘heaven is My throne, and the earth is My footstool. Where then
is a house you could build for Me? And where is a place that I may rest?  For
My hand made all these things, thus all these things came into being,’ declares
the Lord.” (Isaiah 66:1-2 NASB)

The point was driven hard with penetrating
conviction, exposing the religious and ritualistic character of Israel’s Temple
worship at that time. All they had was an empty and glorious shrine filled with
the works of men; a Temple which embodied Israel’s entire hope, joy, identity,
and pride, but had no life within itself.

Stephen did not even finish
quoting the entire passage which concluded, saying, “‘But to this one I will
look, to him who is humble and contrite of spirit, and who trembles at My word”
(Isaiah 66:2 NASB) when the first stone struck him. Silence the messenger, says
the flesh, and you can silence the message.

In the same way, it was the
Temple issue that came up with decisive force during the Lord’s mock trial.
“Now the chief priests and the whole Council kept trying to obtain false
testimony against Jesus, in order that they might put Him to death; and they
did not find any, even though many false witnesses came forward. But later on
two came forward, and said, ‘this man stated, ‘I am able to destroy the temple
of God and to rebuild it in three days.’’” (Matthew 26:59-61 NASB)

This was
the real issue! The danger which Jesus’ life and words brought against the
religious system with the Temple in its heart gave judicial opening to the
final blow:  “…tell us whether you are the Christ, the Son of God.” (Matthew
26:63 NASB) It was the “Jesus versus Temple” case that brought the Son of God
to stand accused before a human court; and it was the question of His divine
life in contrast to the Temple’s emptiness which drove Him to the cross.

Paul warned us of such an empty religious system of works, identifying its
ministers as “holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its
power; and AVOID such men as these.” (2 Timothy 3:5 NASB, emphasis


For Israel’s and for the elect’s
sake, when the anti-Christ manifests himself fully on earth, it is my prayer
that he not find a place to “enthrone” himself in Jerusalem, but rather will
have to seek for it elsewhere, possibly in some apostate hard hearted segment
of Christendom which loves not the Lord, His Bride, His people Israel, and His
soon appearing.

The following scriptural warnings provide some of the
support for the view that the anti-Christ will be enthroned in Jerusalem:
First, the Lord Jesus Himself, in Matthew 24:15, cautioned, “Therefore when you
see the abomination of desolation which was spoken of through Daniel the
prophet, standing in the holy place (let the reader understand), then let those
who are in Judea flee to the mountains…” While this warning may have future
implications (I do not know), it is viewed by many Messianic believers today as
having been primarily fulfilled in the believing community’s first century
flight from Jerusalem during the Roman siege and ultimate defilement of the

Secondly, Paul, in 2-Thesalonians 2:3,4, warned of great evil that
will flood the earth, saying that when “…the man of lawlessness is revealed,
the son of destruction, who opposes and exalts himself above every so-called
god or object of worship, …he (will) takes his seat in the temple of God,
displaying himself as being God.”

Whatever future fulfillment this warning
still carries in its mysterious folds, the fact is that numerous times
throughout Israel’s turbulent history the Holy Place was already desecrated and
taken over by pagan powers and false messiahs who sought world domination. From
Greek idols in the sanctuary during the Inter Testamental period, to Roman
swine offered on the alter following the Lord’s death and resurrection, to
modern day Islamic worship on Temple Mt., world powers and principalities have
done their best to nullify and “replace” the testimony and reality of the God
of Israel.

However, Hitler, our most recent candidate for the office of the
antichrist who created Nazism (which was a spiritually motivated political
movement deeply embedded in a so called “Christian” culture), never reached
Jerusalem. Employing powerful spiritual principles to bind Germany to himself
in blood covenants and almost taking over the entire world through deception
and violence, Hitler established a priesthood, religious ceremonies, a holy
place, even presented himself as a messiah with a global mission. Yet, he was
“enthroned” on a demonic throne in Europe, far away from Jerusalem, and only
for a short time.

So, Jerusalem may not necessarily be in Paul’s prophecy
from 2-Thesalonians 2:3,4. All that the word indicates, according to the
quotations above, is that the antichrist will occupy the holy place, or the
temple of God, having no clear location given. And that, as we know from basic
New Testament theology, can just as well be viewed as the heart of man
individually (I Corinthians 6:19), or the entire church body corporately. (I
Corinthians 3:16,17)

However and until these apocalyptic mysteries are
fulfilled and come to pass, we ought to be very cautious of all branches of
dispensational theology, or we may find ourselves misinterpreting events in the
Middle East and inadvertently misguiding the flock of God. Even if the
antichrist’s final advance on earth will reach Jerusalem, Christians and
Messianic Jewish disciples should have nothing to do with it.


Our passion is to be like Jesus and to present to God the temple of our
bodies as a place for His dwelling. Our mission is to express His Spirit, His
divine life, and His eternal interests on earth though the corporate temple of
His worldwide Body, the “One New Man,” His Bride. We do not even pray for the
rebuilding of the physical Temple in Jerusalem, nor are we looking forward
toward it until after the Lord Jesus returns to earth in power and with His
Kingdom. He alone is worthy to sit upon that throne!

I pray that Israel,
though in deep travail and mortal danger, may become a refuge for the people of
God, rather than the headquarters for the enemy's end time activity. Such
eventuality, no matter how “prophetically thrilling” to some, will be
catastrophic for the Jewish nation and counterproductive to the revival
orientation of God’s end time promises to them.

I hope that the reader can
take these matters into serious consideration and earnest prayer, since, in my
estimation, this third temple issue is a major concern which affects various
doctrines and practices in the Church. We know that a great conflict between
good and evil will come upon the earth before the end, but to Zion and to the
household of faith the Lord’s command is to “Arise, shine; for your light has
come, and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you. For behold, darkness will
cover the earth, and deep darkness the peoples; but the Lord will rise upon
you, and His glory will appear upon you.” (Isaiah 60:1,2 NASB)

In other
words, we have to question anything that adversely influences us toward an
"anti-revival" direction and away from the redemptive move of God on earth.
Knowing that this view is in contradiction to popular teachings by reputable
and respected modern day church fathers, I nevertheless present it here to
encourage an alternative, preemptive, and “counter disastrous” prayer among the

I maintain that all the funds and contributions toward Israel
which stem from benevolent Christian sources today should focus on the building
up of the local Messianic Body in the land. This is the only Temple at present
in which acceptable sacrifices are daily offered, and from which arises
effectual intercession for the salvation of the nation and for her rescue from
the enemy’s murderous plans.

As the Apostle instructed, “…while we have
opportunity, let us do good to all men, and especially to those who are of the
household of the faith.” (Galatians 6:10 NASB) And more, “…if anyone does not
provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied
the faith, and is worse than an unbeliever.” (1 Timothy 5:8 NASB) It is time
for the church in the nations to discern the Body of Messiah in the land of
Israel as their own household.

It was God Himself who affirmed, “On your
walls, O Jerusalem, I have appointed watchmen; all day and all night they will
never keep silent. You who remind the Lord, take no rest for yourselves; and
give Him no rest until He establishes and makes Jerusalem a praise in the
earth.” (Isaiah 62:6,7 NASB) Pray boldly, my friends, with living faith and
complete confidence, allowing nothing to sway you, rather investing
wholeheartedly in God’s word until He fulfills all His great and precious
promises for His Bride, for Israel, for the nations, and for His
Von Reuven Doron,

© Segne Israel,  E-Mail:

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