What was Solomon's temple, the first temple? How many temples were there?


Clarify Share Report Asked July 01 2013 Mini Anonymous (via GotQuestions)

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Shea S. Michael Houdmann Supporter Got Questions Ministries
The crowning achievement of King Solomon's reign was the erection of a magnificent temple in Jerusalem, often called Solomon's temple or the first temple. Solomon's father, King David, had wanted t...

July 01 2013 3 responses Vote Up Share Report

Mini John Appelt
Solomon’s Temple was Israel’s first temple. Before that, the nation carried about the tabernacle, until David had it in his heart to build a temple for the Lord. However, the Lord decided David could not build it, I Chronicles 28:3, but had Solomon his son build it, I Kings 6:1-2, 37-38. 

In the ensuing history of the kingdom of Judah, the temple was rebuilt after the Babylonian captivity, Ezra 1:2-3, and renovated and expanded by Herod, John 2:20. But all these temples were in the same location. 

There are clues in the Bible concerning the location of the temple. One is the prophecy by Jesus that “not one stone would be left here upon another, that shall not be thrown down,” Matthew 24:1, 2; Mark 13:1, 2; Luke 19:43, 44; 21:5, 6. The disciples had just directed the Lord’s attention to the buildings, when the Lord shocked them with the prophecy that it would be completely destroyed as it was in AD 70. A couple of years after it was destroyed, observers noted that even the foundations of the temple were dug up. The early Christian writer and historian Eusebius later claimed seeing the whole area being plowed and saw people carting off stones to build idol temples and theaters. He saw that the actual temple site had become a garbage dump, left completely desolate. 

Because of this, the present-day Temple Mount at the Haram al-Sharif, or the Dome of the Rock, must be ruled out because about 10,000 foundation rocks are still there. Some believe it to be the remnant of Fortress Antonia, but it was instead likely the self-supporting city home of the Roman 10th Legion that sat on 35 acres.

According to John 8:59-9:1,7, the temple had to be close to the Pool of Siloam. Jesus had just left the temple when He saw the blind man likely near it as a place to beg, Acts 3:2. Jesus directed him to go to the pool which is located on the west ridge of the southeast hill of Jerusalem’s City of David. This area is now called Silwan, Arabic for Siloam. 

The pool, called the “Priests’ Fountain,” on the southwest side of the hill, may have served the temple built on that hill. The temple was not 700 yards away, but near enough to a water supply for the cleansing needs of the temple. Josephus described how, although the hill was small, it was enclosed with walls of large stones bound together with lead and iron. It was then filled to a smooth level top, making a huge, elevated platform on the ridge, the dizzying height of 600 feet from the valley floor. The temple, with its own walls and colonnade, was like a fortress, visible from afar.

For many centuries, the magnificent and prominent temple in the southeast part of Jerusalem, was an integral part of Israel’s and, later, Judah’s history, culture, and religious life.

April 20 2023 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

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