Temple in the City of David

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The Temples That Jerusalem Forgot by Ernest L. Martin was released in 1994 and presented an alternative view based on interpretations of the writings of Flavius Josephus and others as well as archaeological evidence that the first and second temples were not located on the traditionally accepted location of the temple mount.

I heard about this initially from a Koinonia House Podcast (K-Rations) with Chuck Missler interviewing Robert Cornuke, author of another book on the subject released April 30, 2014 TEMPLE: Amazing New Discoveries That Change Everything About the Location of Solomon’s Temple (which you can also get on Kindle). There’s also a YouTube Video. In it they referenced Ken Klein’s documentary Jerusalem and the Lost Temple of Jews, which you can watch free now with Amazon Prime.

Honestly I find the subject fascinating if not somewhat overwhelming not having the greatest grasp of history and archaeology, but given the potential impact on the future state of the prophetic rebuilding of the temple in Jerusalem, I feel it’s important to look into it.

Temple in the City of David

Arguments For

“It (Jerusalem) is now demolished to the very foundations, and hath nothing left but that monument of it preserved, I mean the camp of those (Romans) that hath destroyed it, which still dwells upon its ruins.” | Eleazer Ben Jair (Commander at Masada)
“Now as to the Tower of Antonia, it might seem to be composed of several cities. For if we go up to this Tower of Antonia, we gain the city since we shall then be upon the top of the hill.” | Josephus
“Now as to the tower of Antonia, it was situated at the corner of two cloisters (colonnades) of the court of the temple; of that on the west, and that on the north.” | Josephus
Acts 21:32
At once he (the commander) took along some soldiers and centurians and ran down to them.

Hezekiah's Tunnel

The Gihon Spring

Gihon means "Gusher" and it is a siphon spring that could pump water 40 stories, 400 feet from the bottom of the Gihon up to the City of David.

The Pool of Siloam

The area is an acre in size. The archaeologist who found it said, "It's the world's largest mikvah." This is fitting for the large number of people who would have to ritually bathe to go to the temple. Furthermore, where this only natural source of water in Jerusalem is, is about 1/3 of a mile from the Temple Mount. The temple would have to be close to the mikvah to prevent becoming unclean on the way to the temple. They also found the original stairs from the Herodian period going from the Pool of Siloam up to the city of David.

Hezekiah’s Tunnel

Hezekiah’s Tunnel, part of Jerusalem’s water system, is located under the City of David. It connects the Gihon Spring—Jerusalem’s fresh water supply—with the Siloam Pool. According to 2 Chronicles 32:2–4 and 2 Kings 20:20, this tunnel was dug during the reign of King Hezekiah of Judah to prepare Jerusalem for the imminent attack of the Assyrian king, Sennacherib. In the Bible, Hezekiah redirected the water through old and newly dug Jerusalem tunnels.

Research Links For the Theory:

  • The Temple
  • Film: Jerusalem and the Lost Temple of Jews (Watch free now with Amazon Prime) - This compelling video calls into question the common beliefs of the location of the original temples being on the temple mount. Spurred by the studies and book, The Temples That Jerusalem Forgot by Ernest L. Martin, Ken Klein walks through the key evidence from the historical writings of Flavius Josephus and others while actually walking through and filming in Jerusalem.
  • Book: TEMPLE: Amazing New Discoveries That Change Everything About the Location of Solomon’s Temple - Can you imagine the upheaval in political and religious thinking if the Temple Mount in Jerusalem is not the site of Solomon’s and Herod’s temples? And what if the stones of the Wailing Wall are not what tradition says? In this highly-researched, exciting book, the author proposes from current archaeological excavations and Scriptural corroboration that the true temple location is not where tradition teaches. This is must reading for anyone who wants to fit together the pieces of biblical records, current geo-polotics, and prophecy.
  • The Coming Temple! Where the Real Jewish Temple Stood in David's City YouTube - Toward the end of the video, they move to some speculative theories about the abomination of desolation that I don't hold to, but for the most part it’s a good video with lots of good information. Filmed in the Old City of Jerusalem, this ground-breaking documentary investigates the research of renowned Biblical archaeologists, Bob Cornuke, David Seilaff and Earnest L. Martin who claim that Solomon and Herod’s Temples never stood on the Haram al Sharif, also known as the Temple Mount. If they are right, then there is nothing to stop the Jewish people building their long awaited for Third Jewish Temple in the actual site where the Temples once stood. But is tradition too strong?
  • The Temple | Bob Cornuke YouTube - Can you imagine the upheaval in political and religious thinking if the Temple Mount in Jerusalem is not the site of Solomon's and Herod's temples? And what if the stones of the Wailing Wall are not what tradition says? In this highly-researched, exciting book, the author proposes from current archaeological excavations and Scriptural corroboration that the true temple location is not where tradition teaches.

Arguments Against

1 Kings 8:1,6
Then Solomon assembled the elders of Israel, and all the heads of the tribes, the chief of the fathers of the children of Israel, unto king Solomon in Jerusalem, that they might bring up the ark of the covenant of the LORD out of the city of David, which is Zion. … And the priests brought in the ark of the covenant of the LORD unto his place, into the oracle of the house, to the most holy place, even under the wings of the cherubims.

From this passage, it would seem that the City of David was below the temple.

Research Links Against the Theory: