The Jewish Temple in Contemporary Christian Zionism

On January 8, 2001, former Shin Bet secret service chief Carmi Gillon and former police commissioner Assaf Hefetz together with leading Israeli academics delivered a report to the then Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak detailing their concerns regarding plots by Jewish extremist groups to blow up the Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa Mosque.1 Keshev, the Centre for the Protection of Democracy based in Tel Aviv, founded by Gillon and Hefetz following the assassination of Rabin, published a 12 page report entitled, "Target Temple Mount" which examined current threats to the Temple Mount from extreme militant and Messianic groups. The report claimed, 'The Temple Mount is like a smouldering volcano that is bubbling and threatening to erupt - a threat that is liable to endanger Israel's existence.'2 In 1999, the US Anti-Defamation League (ADL) included Gershon Salomon, leader of the Temple Mount Faithful, on a list of "threats to (US) national security."3

On the 8th January 2001, 500,000 secular, religious and ultra-Orthodox Jews gathered near the Temple Mount at the Western Wall, 'and swore faithfulness to the Temple Mount and Jerusalem.'4 In July 2001 the Rabbinical Council of Judea, Samaria and Gaza called on all rabbis to bring their communities to visit the Temple Mount. This was the first time a group of rabbis representing a significant proportion of the religious Jewish community had ruled it permissible for Jews to ascend the Temple Mount. Previously this had been forbidden. The rabbis also called upon the Yesha Council of Jewish settlements to organise mass visits to the Temple Mount from the settlements. Settlement residents tend to be the more politically right wing religious Jews.5 During the same month, the Israeli Supreme Court made a significant decision, once again, for the first time, allowing the Temple Mount Faithful to hold a symbolic cornerstone laying ceremony for the Third Temple near the Dung Gate adjacent to the Western Wall. Each year attempts are made by the Temple Mount Faithful to place a three ton stone on the Temple Mount on Tisha b'Av (29th July) when the Jews mourn the destruction of the first and second Temples and also during the Feast of Sukkoth (usually early October).6 Muslims see this as further indication that Zionists are attempting to take the Temple Mount area by force, destroy the Dome of the Rock and rebuild the Jewish Temple on the site.7

This paper will examine the reasons why Christian Zionists believe so passionately that the rebuilding of the Jewish Temple is imminent and actively support those committed to achieving it.8
Belief in a rebuilt Jewish temple lies at the heart of the controversy concerning the claim to exclusive Jewish sovereignty over Jerusalem as well as the expansion of the borders of Israel to include not only the Palestinian Territories but, based on the literal fulfilment of Genesis 15:18, most of the Middle East from Egypt to the Euphrates.9

Using an analogy of three concentric rings, the Land represents the outer ring, Jerusalem the middle and the Temple the centre. The three rings comprise the Zionist expansionist agenda of which the outer was claimed in 1948, the middle in 1967 and the inner now under heightened threat.

1. Introduction : The Temple of Prayer
The Importance of the Temple to Jews and Zionist Christians
For the past 19 centuries, religious Jews have prayed three times a day, "May it be Thy will that the Temple be speedily rebuilt in our days."12 Randall Price claims that the Torah, 'obligates the Jewish nation to rebuild the Temple whenever it becomes possible to do so (Ex 25:8).'13 However, when IDF Chaplain Rabbi Shlomo Goren blew the shofar and performed a religious ceremony near the Dome of the Rock on the Temple Mount in August 1967 just days after its capture, he was criticised by both the secular Israeli press and orthodox Jews.14 By 1989 Time Magazine reported the findings of a survey showing that some 20 years later, 18% of Israelis thought it was time to rebuild the Temple.15 A similar Gallup poll was conducted in Israel in 1996 to assess opinions on the question of sovereignty over the Temple Mount and the rebuilding the Jewish Temple. It found that 58% of Israelis now supported the Temple Mount Faithful and therebuilding the Jewish Temple. This was allegedly the largest show of support any organisation had ever received in Israel on any subject. Significantly, the highest percentage of support came from young Israelis.16 A simple Internet search of the words 'Temple Mount' reveals 351,000 pages. Add the word 'Christian' and there are still 54,300 web pages of data.17

Contemporary Christian Zionists who have written on the rebuilding of a Jewish Temple include Thomas Ice and Randall Price18, Grant Jeffrey19, Hal Lindsey20, Tim LaHaye21 and Dave Hunt.22 Their combined published book sales exceed 70 million in more than 50 languages. Their views are therefore influential and cannot be dismissed as marginal or esoteric. They are endorsed by some of the largest theological colleges and missionary institutions23 as well as a significant proportion of evangelical, Charismatic, Pentecostal and fundamentalist Christians world-wide. Grace Halsell speculates that 10% of Americans support this movement.24

Other Christian Zionist leaders including James DeLoach, Terry Risenhoover and Doug Kreiger have also been influential in gathering significant American financial and political support for extreme Jewish organisations such as Gush Emunim and the Temple Mount Faithful.25 Christian and Jewish Zionists are united in the conviction that the Muslim Dome of the Rock must be destroyed, the third Jewish Temple built, priests consecrated and sacrifices reinstituted in fulfilment of biblical prophecy and to ensure the coming of Messiah.26

Christian Zionists see the founding of the State of Israel in 1948 and the capture of Jerusalem in 1967 as highly significant, signalling the end of 2000 years exile, and the end of the 'Times of the Gentiles'. Hal Lindsey is regarded as the 'Father of the Modern-Day Bible Prophecy movement'27 and a leading representative of Christian Zionists. He insists the Temple Mount is 'the most disputed 35 acres on the Planet,'28 and the fate of the earth will be determined by its contested ownership.29

Jews for Jesus also endorse and sell 'Ready to Rebuild: The Imminent Plan to Rebuild the Last Days Temple', by Thomas Ice and Randall Price. These dispensational writers advocate the rebuilding of the Jewish temple next to, if not in place of, the Dome of the Rock.32 The book review, quoting John Walvoord, chancellor of Dallas Theological Seminary, also implies the State of Israel supports moves to rebuild the Temple.

2. The Temple of Dispensationalism
The Historical Origins of the Christian Zionist Temple Movement

2.1 The Premillennial Presuppositions of a Rebuilt Temple
Of the three eschatological positions, amillennial, postmillennial and premillennial, it is the latter, with its belief in a literal and physical thousand year Messianic reign on earth, centred on Jerusalem, which has sustained belief in a future Jewish Temple. While this view was held prior to 194834, it was the founding of the State of Israel, and more especially, the Israeli capture of the Old City of Jerusalem in 1967, which became the catalyst for speculation on the imminent rebuilding of the Temple.35 In the early 19th Century the dominant eschatological position among evangelicals was postmillennial, believing the Church would triumph over evil, progressively converting the world before the return of Jesus. Gradually the influence of Edward Irving's apocalyptism36 and J. N. Darby's pessimistic dispensationalism37, brought about a revival in premillennial thinking to the point when by the mid 20th Century it had come to dominate evangelical and fundamentalist circles, virtually synonymous with dispensationalism.38

2.2 A Futurist Literal Hermeneutic
Speculation about the rebuilding of the Temple is largely the consequence of a futurist literal hermeneutic popularised in the early 19th Century by Edward Irving39 and the Albury Circle meeting in Surrey,40 later by John Nelson Darby and the Powerscourt Conferences in Ireland41 and then most effectively by Cyrus Scofield in the United States through his Scofield Reference Bible.42 It is based on the premise that prophecies made in the Old Testament which have not yet been fulfilled literally, word for word, must await future fulfilment. Similarly the futurizing of passages such as the Olivet Discourse in Matthew 24 require a rebuilt Temple for their fulfilment.43 So, Scofield insisted,

Not one instance exists of a 'spiritual' or figurative fulfilment of prophecy... Jerusalem is always Jerusalem, Israel is always Israel, Zion is always Zion... Prophecies may never be spiritualised, but are always literal.44

One of Scofield's disciples, Lewis Sperry Chafer, who founded Dallas Theological Seminary in 1924, became his most articulate and influential exponent producing the first and definitive eight volume systematic theology of Dispensationalism based on Scofield's scheme.45 Chafer defines the literal hermeneutic upon which dispensationalism and the Christian Zionist belief in a rebuilt Temple is based.

John Walvoord, Chancellor of Dallas Theological Seminary, summarises the position of premillennial dispensationalists who take the authors of the Bible "to mean what they say".

Walvoord claims history has proved the premillennialist correct.

Walvoord's dogmatic presuppositions are readily questioned by those who hold differing eschatological views.49

2.3 The Dispensational Distinction between the Church and Israel
The literalist hermeneutic of dispensationalism leads them to distinguish between God's continuing purposes for the Jewish people from those of the Church.50 The idea that the Jews are God's earthly people and the Church God's heavenly people was first argued by John Nelson Darby.51 Charles Ryrie insists the sine qua non of Dispensationalism to be:

Scofield taught as a consequence that it was God's intention to restore the nation of Israel to Palestine, to rebuild the Temple, and re-institute the priesthood and sacrificial system.

Scofield even claimed that there will be a fourth millennium temple in Jerusalem.

In a sense all the temples (i.e. Solomon's; Ezra's; Herod's; that which will be used by the unbelieving Jews under the covenant with the Beast [Dan. 9.27; Mt. 24. 15; 2 Thes. 2. 3,4]; and Ezekiel's future kingdom temple [Ezk. 40-47.]), are treated as one 'house'-the 'house of the Lord,' 54

The conviction held by Christian Zionists that the Jewish Temple must be rebuilt is therefore based upon a premillennial eschatology, a futurist literal hermeneutic and the dispensationalist distinction between Israel and the Church. These foundational presuppositions stand or fall together.55

3. The Temple of Prophecy
The Biblical Basis for the Rebuilding of the Jewish Temple
The conviction that the Temple must be rebuilt is based on the assumption that certain Old Testament prophecies referring to the Temple have not yet been fulfilled and upon a few New Testament references which, when read using a futurist literal hermeneutic, imply the existence of a Jewish Temple immediately prior to the return of Christ.

3.1 Unfulfilled Old Testament Prophecies
One of the most frequently quoted Old Testament passages by Christian Zionists is Daniel 9:24-27. The sanctuary appears to have already been destroyed in verse 26 yet sacrifices are brought to an end in verse 27 and then the 'abomination that causes desolation' desecrates the Temple. On the basis of a literal chronology in which it is necessary to place a gap of nearly 2000 years between the verses, Lindsey confidently argues,

David Brickner, International Director of Jews for Jesus, reaches the same conclusion.

Kenneth Barker posits five rather questionable reasons for the gap between the 69th and 70th week. His two strongest arguments are based on literalist dispensational presuppositions which evaporate if they are themselves questioned.

There is nothing, however, in the text of Daniel 9 that requires a futurist scenario, suggests a gap between the 69th and 70th weeks, or predicts the rebuilding of a Jewish Temple. Gary DeMar points out,

Other commentators regard attempts to date Daniel's 'weeks' are essentially flawed because they fail to read this prophecy as symbolic 'chronography' rather than literal chronology. So, for example, Goldingay claims Daniel is using,

Others also see these verses as having been fulfilled theologically in Jesus who by his death put an end to sacrifices as well as the Temple.61
Moishe Rosen, however, following a futurist literal reading, claims Ezekiel 43 also refers to contemporary events leading to the imminent rebuilding of the Temple.
Such a conviction is based on the imposition of dispensational presuppositions and a futurist hermeneutic rather than by exegeting what the text actually says. The same futurist assumptions are used to interpret references to the destruction of the Temple found in the New Testament.

3.2 The New Testament Fulfilment
The most important New Testament passage used to support the belief in the rebuilding of the Jewish Temple is Matthew 24:1-2 and 15. While Dispensationalists agree that in the first two verses Jesus is warning of the imminent destruction of Jerusalem,
they claim that by verse 15 Jesus is describing the desecration of another future Temple which has yet to be built. This futurist interpretation of Matthew 24, like that of Daniel 9:24-27 requires a gap of some 2000 years between these verses. So, for example, John Walvoord argues,

Hal Lindsey takes a similar but rather more dogmatic view.

Lindsey is not averse to adding words to the text of scripture where they help to reinforce his interpretation.

While Lindsey and Walvoord believe Jesus was predicting a future desecration of a rebuilt temple, non-dispensationalist commentators suggest his words were fulfilled in the events leading up to the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D. when Jewish Zealots desecrated the temple using it as a fortress against the Romans.67
Eusebius, the 4th Century church historian, for example, refers to the eyewitness accounts of Josephus to show how these predictions were understood as having already been fulfilled by then.68

Writing in the Jewish Wars, Josephus links Daniel's prophecy to the desecration of the Temple and destruction of Jerusalem in AD 66-70.

Josephus also specifically associates the desecration of the Temple with the activities of Jewish Zealots who, between November 67 and the Spring of 68 AD., used the Temple as a military fortress, murdered Jewish opponents within it and even entered the Holiest of Holies. They also appointed their own high priests who were 'undeserving, ignoble and vile persons' including an 'ignoramus' called Phannias.71

Believing God would intervene and deliver them by force, the Zealots invited the Idumean army of some 20,000 troops to come and help defend Jerusalem from the Romans. Josephus tells us that instead, the Idumeans took advantage of the city and plundered it, filling the Temple with the blood of those slaughtered including the family of the High Priest Ananus.

Josephus regarded the death of Ananus as the beginning of the destruction of Jerusalem.77
It is probable therefore that Jewish Christians also recognised in the murder of Ananus and the appointment of apostate high priests like Phannias, the sacrilege Jesus had warned of in Matthew 24, and so fled Jerusalem for the mountains of Pella on the other side of the Jordan.78
The Temple was subsequently defiled yet again by the invading Roman army. The Roman soldiers worshipped the eagle on their ensigns and placed them in the Temple where they offered sacrifices to their pagan gods. Josephus describes the scene.

As a 1st Century eyewitness and historian, Josephus shows how the Temple was desecrated on numerous occasions first by Jewish Zealots, then by the marauding Idumeans and finally by Titus and his Roman army. The irony is that Josephus also records that Titus lamented how the Jews themselves destroyed their own temple by setting it on fire.80

While the Idumeuns and Romans did subsequently desecrate the Temple, it was first and foremost the Jews who, having rejected Jesus and declared Caesar to be their only king, appointed apostate high priests and used the Temple as a fortress against Rome, who ultimately fulfilled the words of Jesus and made Temple worship idolatrous.82
John Calvin reached this conclusion believing God,

Whether at the hands of Jews or pagans, with the destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70 the abomination had indeed brought desolation. Dispensationalists, however, reject the contemporary historical evidence, substantiating a 1st Century fulfilment, preferring instead to interpret Matthew 24 as prophecy awaiting future fulfilment. So when Jesus promised these events would be witnessed by 'this generation'84
Lindsey understands the word 'this' to refer to his own generation who had witnessed the founding of the State of Israel in 1948 and capture of the Old City of Jerusalem in 1967.85

A plain reading of the text, however, indicates that Jesus spoke with urgency intending his hearers to recognise the signs of the times and escape the imminent death and destruction about to befall Jerusalem. Walvoord, nevertheless, claims that his reading of 2 Thessalonians 2:1-4 confirms a futurist dispensational reading.

Further evidence for the rebuilding of the Temple is allegedly found in the instructions given to the Apostle John to measure the Temple in Revelation 11:1-2.

It is on the basis of these passages and a literalist logic that dispensationalists believe the Bible promises a future Temple will be built in order to be desecrated and destroyed once again.
The word is also used 25 times in Acts and always of Herod's Temple or a pagan shrine. In the Epistles the word occurs in nine verses. In three it refers to the existing Jewish Temple and once to a pagan shrine.91
In the Book of Revelation the word occurs a further 12 times and in each case refers specifically to the heavenly Temple or to the Lord God Himself92
. On the six remaining occasions when the word is used in the Epistles it describes the individual Christian and corporately the Church as the Body of Christ.93
Jesus anticipated this in his conversation with the Samaritan women in John 4. Worship, Jesus predicted, would soon no longer be confined to the Temple in Jerusalem but become universal 'in spirit and truth'.94
While Jesus warned of the destruction of the Temple, and was known to have said so by his critics, he never promised that it would ever be rebuilt.95
In Hebrews, the author describes the offering of sacrifices between the death of Christ and the destruction of the Temple as an 'illustration' of, and 'copies' of, heavenly realities, a 'reminder of sins' but unable, unlike the finished work of Christ, to take sin away.96
Peter uses the same terminology to describe the way Christians are being made into the new house of God,97 in which Jesus is the 'precious cornerstone'.98

There is therefore not a single verse in the New Testament which promises the Jewish Temple would be rebuilt or that a 2000 year 'parenthesis' should be placed between references to its desecration and destruction. Christian Zionists consistently ignore the way in which the Temple is invested with new meaning in the New Testament as a 'type' for Jesus Christ and his Church99
Instead they advocate a return to the very practices made redundant by the work of Jesus Christ.

4. The Temple of Sacrifice
The Theological Purpose for the Rebuilding of the Jewish Temple

The rebuilding of the Temple is meaningless without at the same time the reintroduction of the Mosaic sacrificial system. Based on his reading of Daniel, Walvoord, for example, claims,

Scofield in his Reference Bible claimed, however, that the sacrifices mentioned in Ezekiel 43:19, would only be a 'memorial' offering.

For one so committed to 'literalism' such an interpretation is unconvincing for the verse explicitly refers to the sacrifice of a 'young bullock as a sin offering.' If Scofield appears to fudge the issue, the note on the same verse in the New Scofield Reference Bible goes even further, undermining the entire hermeneutical premise of Dispensationalism.

If this particular reference to sacrifice need not be taken literally then the whole dispensationalist edifice collapses, flawed by its internal inconsistency.103
It is impossible to confuse or equate the sacrifice of a young bullock with a memorial offering which consisted of grain and oil.104
The immediate context for Ezekiel's vision of a rebuilt Temple is the promised return of the Jews from Babylonian exile, not some long distant eschatological event. This would have been utterly meaningless to the exiles longing to return to Israel. Furthermore, if Ezekiel was referring to some future millennial age, Jesus Christ could not serve in such a Temple because he was not of the tribe of Levi.105
However, even if he could do so it would still be incongruous for Jesus to offer animal sacrifices when he had replaced them by the shedding his own blood.106
Such an interpretation undermines the New Testament emphasis on the finished and sufficient work of Christ.107
Nevertheless, Zahava Glaser, of Jews for Jesus, describes how over the past 1900 years the liturgy used in the synagogue has kept the memory of the Temple alive in Jewish hearts and prayers. He therefore insists, 'when God instituted the sacrificial system, it was instituted for all time.'

Glaser seems to be representative of those who hold that the Temple will be rebuilt because the Jews have a separate covenant relationship with God, apart from the Church. He therefore does not appear to see the high priesthood of Jesus as in any sense necessarily replacing or superseding the Jewish religious system.

By insisting on such an arbitrary and dualistic separation between God's purposes for the Jews and those of the Church, Christian Zionists are promoting Old Testament 'shadows' alongside their New Testament 'substance'.109
In doing so they are seeking to revive what is now obsolete. Turning the clock back in redemptive history110 they are Judaizing the Christian faith.111
If religious Jews do indeed rebuild their Temple and re-institute sacrifices it will only confirm their rejection of the atoning work of Jesus Christ. For Christians to support them in the belief that future sacrifices may atone for sin is apostasy.112
This is because the movement in the progressive revelation of Scripture is always from the lesser to the greater. It is never reversed. The New Testament repeatedly sees such Old Testament concepts as the Temple, High Priest and sacrifice as 'types' pointing to and fulfilled in Jesus Christ.113
Typology in Scripture never typifies itself, nor is it ever greater than that which it typifies.114
Christians who therefore advocate the rebuilding of the Temple are regressing into a pre-Christian sacrificial system, superseded and annulled by the finished work of Jesus Christ. DeMar writes,

The Temple was but a temporary edifice, 'a copy and a shadow of what is in heaven,'116
anticipating the day when God would dwell with people of all nations throughout the world because of the atoning work of the true Temple, Jesus Christ.117
J.C. Ryle, writing in 1856, challenged those of his day who anticipated the rebuilding of the Temple based on Matthew 24 in like manner.

Charles Spurgeon put it rather more succinctly.

5. The Temple of Destiny
The Practical Issues of Rebuilding the Jewish Temple

5.1 When - the timing for the rebuilding
Brickner asserts that the preparations for rebuilding the Temple began in 1967 with the capture of the Old City of Jerusalem.120

Lindsey is equally confident. 'Right now, as you read this, preparations are being made to rebuild the Third Temple.'121

5.2 Where - the location of the First and Second Temples
One of the unresolved difficulties faced by those who favour the rebuilding of the Jewish Temple is deciding where to put it. It is critical that any future Temple be built on the same site as the Temples of Solomon, Zerubbabel and Herod. There appears to have been some continuity with each being built with its Holy of Holies enclosing the same protrusion of Mount Moriah, also known as Even ha-Shetiyah (The Foundation Stone). There are three main theories advocated by historians and archaeologists.

One theory C suggested by Father Bellarmino Bagatti, a Franciscan scholar and supported by Tel Aviv architect Tuvia Sagiv, is based on early archaeological findings, Josephus and topographical elevations. They argue that the Temple was situated at the southwest corner of the platform near to where the Al Aqsa mosque is today.122

Based on infrared thermographic scans of the Temple Mount they claim that underground structures may prove the presence of vaults and Hadrian's temple to Jupiter in this area to the south of the Dome of the Rock. If the Roman's built their pagan temple over the destroyed Jewish Temple, as was often their custom, this may indicate that the Temple was originally at this location.

A more popular theory A is offered by Asher Kaufmann, a physicist at the Hebrew University.123
His research relies on details given in the Mishna Tractate known as Middot (Measurements) and computations based on the angles of line-of-sight between the Mount of Olives where the red heifer was allegedly sacrificed and the eastern court of the Temple where the Great Altar stood. Kaufman claims that based on these calculations the Temple was built on the north-western corner of the Temple platform about 330 feet away from the Dome of the Rock. He believes that a small cupola at this site, known in Arabic as the Dome of the Tablets, was the Foundation Stone within the Holy of Holies.124

The most commonly held theory B, with both traditional support and the consensus among Israeli archaeologists today, is that the Temple stood on the site of the Dome of the Rock. Research by Benjamin Mazar, Leen Ritmeyer, who served as chief architect for the Western wall excavations, as well as Dan Bahat, professor of archaeology at Bar Ilan University, conclude that based on physical evidence remaining on the site, both the First and Second Temples were situated under the Dome of the Rock.125
Ritmeyer claims to have found within the Muslim Dome of the Rock, the foundation trenches and the walls of the Holy of Holies, and place where the Ark of the Covenant rested.126
Kaufmann's northern site theory is increasingly favoured by Christian Zionists as it does not require the destruction of the Dome of the Rock.

It is fascinating observing how people like Lindsey have altered their views over time. In the 1970's, for example, Lindsey insisted the Jewish Temple would have to be built in place of the Dome of the Rock.

Lindsey even appeared to know the exact location of the former structure.

By 1983 Lindsey had changed his mind. Favouring Kaufman's position Lindsey now claimed,

Having discovered the true site of the Herodian Temple, Lindsey proceeded to find scriptural verification for this new location.

In 1994, Lindsey heightened speculation still further by insisting,

Brickner also supports the claims made by Randall Price that the Jewish Temple could actually be rebuilt alongside the Dome of the Rock.

Most orthodox Jews, however, remain convinced that the Dome of the Rock must be removed before the Temple can be rebuilt,133
although Gershon Salomon claims the Dome of the Rock was built by Caliph Abd el-Malik in 691 AD as a Jewish house of prayer, as he was allegedly a Jewish proselyte.134

5.3 How - the Means for Rebuilding
Chaim Richman, a spokesman for the Temple Institute, claims detailed blueprints for the Third Temple have existed for several years. Other buildings associated with the a future Temple are planned or have already been built. Rabbi Shlomo Goren, for example, has supervised the construction of a replica of the 70-seat Supreme Court building for the new Sanhedrin, adjacent to the Temple Mount in the Jewish Quarter. The legal stipulations which the Sanhedrin will use to supervise Temple practices are also being published. The first volume was printed in 1986 by the Research Center for Jewish Thought under the direction of Yoel Lerner.135
A member of Meir Kahane Kach movement, Lerner was arrested and convicted in 1982 for attempting to sabotage the Dome of the Rock for which he was sentenced to two and a half years in prison.136
Previously he had served a three year sentence for plotting to overthrow the Israeli government and establish a state based upon religious law.

5.3.1 Training the Priests - The Temple Mount Yeshivas
According to rabbinic tradition, although the genealogical records of the Temple were lost in 70 AD when the Jews were dispersed, Levites were forbidden to change their family names when other Jews assimilated into the Roman Empire. The use of modern DNA tests has also been used to confirm the authenticity of men suitable to train as Temple priests. Rabbi Nachman Kahane, head of the Young Israel Synagogue together with the Institute for Talmudic Commentaries maintains a computer database of all known priestly candidates in Israel. Other Orthodox organizations in Israel are helping to educate them. The Yeshiva founded by Motti Dan Hacohen, known as Ateret Cohanim, for example, is preparing students to perform priestly service. Its sister organization Atara Leyoshna, has aggressively acquired or illegally occupied many Arab properties in the Muslim Quarter near the Temple Mount in order to establish and consolidate a Jewish presence in preparation for rebuilding the Temple.137
Brickner cites the following advert placed in Ha'aretz in March 1998.

Brickner appears representative of those Christian Zionists who are convinced that ultra-orthodox groups will fulfill the vision of a fully functioning Jewish Temple.

5.3.2 Consecrating the Priests - Breeding the Red Heifers
The dilemma facing prospective Temple priests is how to gain ritual purity in order to begin serving in a future Temple. According to the Book of Numbers, the ashes of a pure unblemished red heifer, itself previously offered by a ritually pure priest, must be mixed with water and sprinkled on both them and the Temple furniture. With the destruction of the Temple in 70 AD the ashes used in the ceremony were lost and the Jews of the Diaspora have since therefore been perpetually unclean. The search for the ashes of the last red heifer have so far proved unsuccessful. In 1998, however, Clyde Lott, a Mississippi rancher, formed Canaan Land Restoration of Israel, Inc. for the purpose of raising livestock suitable for Temple sacrifice.139
Shortly after this Rev. Lott (who is also a cattleman by trade) came to possess a red heifer that met all the biblical qualifications of Numbers chapter 19. Since that historic time in, November 11, 1994 God has miraculously unveiled HIs divine plan for the restoration of Israel, to the Church. The Holy Ghost has worked during this time to reveal to Apostolic ministers and laymen the need to unify their efforts in order to see this project move forward, both in the Spirit and in the natural. August 11, 1998 Israel is expecting to receive from Canaan Land Restoration, 500 head of bred, registered Red Angus Heifers.140

Rabbi Chaim Richman, 'The Mystery of the Red Heifer'

141 Kendall Hamilton (with Joseph Contreras and Mark Dennis), "The Strange Case of Israel's Red Heifer," Newsweek (May 19, 1997).

142 Moses Maimonides, Commentary on the Mishnah. His exact statements reads: "...and the tenth red heifer will be accomplished [prepared?] by the king, the Messiah..;." cited in Randall Price, 'Time for a Temple?' Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry. See also Rabbi Chaim Richman, The Mystery of the Red Heifer: Divine Promise of Purity (Jerusalem: Rabbi Chaim Richman, 1997), pp 64-74.

143 Louis Rapoport, 'Slouching towards Armageddon: Links with Evangelicals' Jerusalem Post International Edition, June 17-24, 1984; Halsell, Forcing., p. 68.

144 Grace Halsell, Prophecy and Politics, Militant Evangelists on the Road to Nuclear War (Westport, Connecticut, Lawrence Hill, 1986), pp. 96-97. Halsell, Forcing., p. 68.

145 Louis Rapoport, 'Slouching towards Armageddon: Links with Evangelicals' Jerusalem Post International Edition, June 17-24, 1984.

146 Halsell, Prophecy., p. 106.

147 Jay Gary, 'The Temple Time Bomb' Presence Magazine

148 Ross Dunn, 'Israel holds disciples of 'Second Coming' cult' Times, 4 January 1999, p. 12.

149 Lindsey, Planet., p. 163.

150 Lindsey, Planet., p. 163.

151 Lindsey, Israel., p. 19.

152 Brickner, Future., p. 60.

153 Jan Willem van der Hoeven, Babylon or Jerusalem? (Shippensburg, Pasadena: Destiny Image Publishers, 1993), p. 169.

154 van der Hoeven, Babylon., p. 163.

155 Hal Lindsey, The Road to Holocaust (New York: Bantam, 1989). Lindsey accuses those who oppose dispensationalism of anti-Semitism, '...the same error that founded the legacy of contempt for the Jews and ultimately led to the Holocaust of Nazi Germany.' (back page).

156 Rich Robinson, 'Israeli Groups Involved in Third Temple Activities' Jews for Jesus Newsletter Issue 10, Adar 5753, 1993.

157 Brickner, Future., p. 60.

158 Price, Coming., pp. 616-20.

159 Brickner, Future., p. 61.

160 Zhava Glaser, 'Today's Rituals: Reminders or Replacements' Issues., 8, 3.

161 Nadav Shragai, 'Dreaming of a Third Temple', Ha'aretz, 17 September 1998, p.3. Cited in Price, Coming., p. 417.

162 Sam Kiley, 'The righteous will survive and the rest will perish' The Times, 13 December 1999, p. 39.

163 Gershon Salomon, 'An Upheaval in the Israeli Government" The Voice of the Temple Mount Faithful, Summer 5761/2001, p. 6

164 Cited in Halsell, Prophecy., p. 115.

165 International Christian Zionist Congress Proclamation, International Christian Embassy, Jerusalem. 25-29 February 1996.

166 Lindsey, Planet., p. 155.

167 Lindsey, Planet., p. 216.

168 Brickner, Future., p. 62.

169 Rosen., Overture., p. 140.

170 Lindsey, Late., p. 160.

171 Lindsey, Planet., p. xiii.

172 Hebrews 9:9.

173 Hebrews 9:23.

174 Hebrews 8:5.

175 Hebrews 9:24.

176 Revelation 21:22.

177 Hebrews 10:29; Galatians 1:8-9.

178 Donald Wagner, Anxious for Armageddon (Scottdale, Pennsylvania: Herald Press, 1995)