King Solomon built the First Temple in 961 BC. That Temple was destroyed by the Babylonians in 586 BC because of Israel’s sin and rebellion against God. God’s blessings upon Israel are conditional on her obedience to Him.
The Second Temple was built by Zerubbabel in 516 BC. Herod expanded and beautified the Second Temple in 19 BC. The Second Temple was burned and destroyed by the Romans in 70 AD.
Scripture reveals that there will be a Third Temple standing during the tribulation period. This Third Temple will be a Temple that Antichrist will allow Israel to build and proceed to use it as a place where he is worshipped as God.
Satan not only wants to be worshipped as God, he wants to be worshipped in the very spot set aside by God for men to worship Him. We catch something of the boldness of Satan and the audacity with which he attacks God. Verses that teach about this Third Temple are found in Daniel 9:27; Matthew 24: 15, 16; 2 Thessalonians 2: 3, 4; Revelation 11:1, 2.
The Fourth Temple will be the Millennial Temple. We read about it in Ezekiel 40:5-43:27. This Temple will be the center of the worship of Jesus Christ, and it will be the focus of the entire world during the thousand year reign of Our Lord and Saviour.
There is also a Heavenly Temple and it serves as a model for the earthly Temples.
There will be no Temple in the eternal age. The new heavens and the new earth will not be polluted with sin and God will be able to dwell openly with man.
Today Israelis are preparing for the building of the third Temple. Much preparation has already taken place. In Jerusalem the “Temple Institute” is producing the instruments of worship, the menorah, the priestly garments, and the harps for the Temple orchestra have been made. The plans for the Temple itself have been completed and funds are being solicited for the construction. The decision has been made to build it in sections for quick assembly when the moment arrives to erect it.
Israel Today reports that a model of the Temple is being set up in Mitzpe Yericho, a settlement near Jericho. There the descendants of Aaron will learn how to serve as priests and Levites.
As the preparatory work proceeds, the Muslims are in a frenzy to deny that a Jewish Temple ever existed on the Temple Mount. They are threatening all-out war if the Jews attempt to build the Temple.
It is obvious that some momentous event will have to take place to allow the Temple to be constructed.
It seems from scripture that the Antichrist will come upon the scene and allow the construction to proceed. It would seem that this permission will be incorporated in the peace treaty that he will sign. The question remains as to how the Palestinians and the Muslim world will change their minds.
I believe that the soon coming war of Psalm 83 will bring about the utter destruction of the Palestinians and their nearby allies, Hamas, Hezbollah and Syria. This message permeates the account of this war in Psalm 83, Ezekiel 35-36, Isaiah 17 and Obadiah 10, 18.
We do not know exactly when this war will take place; it may be next week, next month, next year or later. We do know that the stage is now set for that war to take place.
“And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh” (Luke 21:28). This verse has to be referring to the rapture because it uses the words “begin to come to pass” when the second coming takes place these things will not be just beginning to come to pass, they will all be completely fulfilled.
Ludwig Schneider makes the following observation in an “Israel Today” article.
[Why are the Muslims claiming with such vehemence that the 35-acre Temple Mount belongs solely to them? They are not only ignoring all biblical and historical evidence regarding the Temple, they are also destroying archaeological evidence on the Mount in a deliberate attempt to falsify history and deny Jewish claims to Jerusalem. Jewish tradition teaches that the Messiah will enter Jerusalem through the Eastern or Golden Gate (Ezekiel 44:1-3). To prevent this, the Muslims sealed the gate during the rule of Suleiman in the 16th century. Then they placed a graveyard in front of it, knowing full well that a Jewish priest is not permitted to have contact with dead bodies (Leviticus 21:1) —and Jesus is the High Priest after the order of Melchizedek (Hebrews 7:1-3). Knowing that the Third Temple must stand on the Temple Mount, the Muslims are using all possible means to prevent this from happening, believing that God’s end-time promises will be seen as lies when they are not fulfilled. This also explains their opposition to Jewish settlements. They want to prevent the fulfillment of God’s promises for the restoration of Israel, such as Ezekiel 36:10, which says, “And I will multiply men upon you, all the house of Israel, even all of it: and the cities shall be inhabited, and the wastes shall be builded.”]
As we come to the end of the age we are more and more conscious of a great spiritual warfare that is being waged. We are also more aware of the fact that men and women are the instruments that are being used to carry forth this climactic struggle.
This great warfare that is being waged is focusing on Israel and upon the church of Jesus Christ. We as followers of Christ are coming under attack and the intensity of that attack is growing by the hour.