WND.com is reporting a confrontation with Muslim authorities that happened November 17, 2016 on the Temple Mount. WND.com editor Joseph Farrah along with Jonathan Cahn — a Messianic rabbi most famous for his New York Times‘ best seller, The Harbinger — were co-leading a group of 406 people on a visit to Israel.
Part of this trip included a visit to the 40-acre Temple Mount located in the heart of Jerusalem. It was the original site of the First and Second Jewish Temples. The Romans destroyed the second temple used in Jesus’ day in 70AD.
Today, the site is home to two Muslim buildings — the Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa Mosque.
Though Israeli government controls the site, it has given the Jordanian Waqf, essentially an Islamic police force, considerable leeway on controlling the Temple Mount.
Among other things, the Waqf monitors dress and ensures that Jews and Christians don’t pray on the site. That latter provision has forced the Jews to pray at the Western Wall down below.
As part of the trip to the Temple Mount, Rabbi Cahn gave a brief historical overview of the famous site. As he was making his presentation, a member of the Waqf was closely monitoring the teaching session.
A few minutes later, he called over other members of the Waqf.
They then stopped the presentation and pulled Cahn aside for a meeting. They accused Cahn of using the word ‘Temple,’ which according to the Waqf is a forbidden word on top of the Temple Mount. Cahn did use the word.
They also accused Cahn of saying the word America (which he did) and of talking about the 1948 war when Israel became a nation (which he didn’t). They also said someone clapped which could be interpreted as prayer or worship forbidden on the site. One person did.
The Waqf ordered Cahn and his group to leave the Temple Mount immediately. At first Cahn argued with them stating his group had done nothing wrong. However, when a member of the Waqf started losing it, for the safety of the group Cahn agreed to leave.
The Al-Aqsa Mosque built in 705AD is considered the third most holy site in the Sunni Muslim world. The Sunni are the group out of which ISIS came.
The Dome of the Rock constructed in 691AD is not a mosque, but a Muslim shrine. The Dome’s foundation stone is believed by some Muslims to be the spot from which the angel Gabriel carried Muhammad on his visit to heaven.
Aside from being the site of two Jewish temples, the Jews also believe this foundation stone is the spot where Abraham planned to sacrifice his son Isaac.
One of the questions that always puzzled me is how did the Dome of the Rock and the Al-Aqsa mosque survive the crusades. The first crusade took place between 1096 and 1099 and resulted in the capture of Jerusalem.
The Knights Templar mistakenly thought the Dome of the Rock was the Temple of Solomon — the first of the two Jewish temples. So they simply removed the Muslim scimitar on top and replaced it with a cross. They then renamed it “Templum Domini” — the Temple of God.
As for the Al Aqsa mosque they figured that must be Solomon’s palace and converted it into a monastery.
When the Muslim leader Saladin retook the city in October 1187, he removed the cross and replaced it with a scimitar. It was because of this mistaken belief the two buildings survived the Crusades unscathed.
Though the Temple in Jesus’ day was destroyed in 70AD, some believe a third temple will be built. This is because a temple described in Ezekiel 40 does not fit the description of either Solomon’s temple (the first temple) or Herod’s Temple (the second temple) leading to speculation of a yet un-built third temple.
A group of orthodox Jews have set up The Temple Institute with plans to build this third temple in Jerusalem. It has already manufactured much of the temple furniture and set up a school to train priests. It has even ordered architectural drawings for a third temple
From a Christian perspective, there is also a reference to a Temple in the Book of Revelation (Revelation 11:1-2). However, many do not look at this as a literal physical temple.
Jesus prophesied that the Temple would be destroyed because His body, the church, would be God’s new temple (John 2:20-22; 1 Corinthians 3:16-17). Consequently, many consider the references to a third temple in Ezekiel and Revelation are descriptions of a spiritual temple.