Temple Mount & Pentecost
Places of Interest
Temple Mount & Pentecost
1. The Temple Mount is located on the eastern side of Old City Jerusalem
2. It occupies 1/6 of the current city.
3. It is 35 acres (14 hectares) in size, the equivalent of 35 football fields.
1. The Temple Mount has played a “center stage” role for much of Israel’s history and has functioned as the center of God’s dwelling place and ministry on this earth.
2. It will play a key part during the Millennial Reign of Christ on the earth as well.
3. God has chosen to focus His presence and attention there like a laser beam from heaven like no other place.
4. First temple: the temple Solomon built.
5. Second temple: the temple Zerubbabel oversaw after the deportation and return of the Jews.
6. King Herod’s temple: it would seem like this would be called the third temple, but because the second temple wasn’t destroyed by enemies, but that Herod built over it a new temple and then removed the old one inside, it is still referred to as the second temple.
Places of Interest
1. Temple Mount
2. Archaeological, historical, and eyewitness accounts place the location of the first and second temples directly on top of the Dome of the Rock.
3. Original Altar Location
4. Muslim Platform
5. Solomon's Porticos
6. Northwestern Corner of Original Temple Platform
7. Bend in the Wall: Hasmonean Addition to Platform
8. Seam in the Wall: Herod Addition to Platform
9. Western Wall
10. Eastern Gate
11. Southern Stairs
12. Antonia Fortress
13. Holes in the Rock Face Where Beams were Attached for Portico
14. Royal Stoa – Location close to where Pentecost likely took place.
15. Upper Room
16. Pool of Siloam
17. Pilgrim's Road (Herodian St.) from the Pool of Siloam to the Southern Stairs and Robinson's Arch Stairway
18. Mikvehs by the Southern Stairs
19. City of David
20. Jerusalem in the time of Christ
The Temple Mount and Pentecost in the Bible
1. Pentecost means 50.
2. Fifty days after Passover, the Jewish feast of Pentecost (Shavuot) was celebrated, which was primarily a thanksgiving for the firstfruits of the wheat harvest, but it was later associated with a remembrance of the Law given by God to Moses on Mount Sinai. At this feast, the Jews were to give God the firstfruits of their wheat harvest.
3. Pentecost also marks 50 days from the time the Israelites left Egypt and arrived at Mount Sinai, where God gave them the 10 Commandments and the Law.
4. Pentecost happened 50 days after Passover. There were 40 days from the resurrection of Christ to His ascension, and then 10 days from Christ’s ascension to Pentecost, for a total of 50 days.
5. Interestingly, the Jewish nation was born at Mount Sinai 50 days after leaving Egypt, and the Church was born at Pentecost 50 days after Christ’s resurrection.
Reasons why Pentecost could have happened at the Southern Stairs.
1. It is unlikely that Pentecost took place in the Upper Room as a multitude gathered and witnessed this astounding event. The Upper Room couldn’t have handled such a large crowd of 15,000–30,000.
Acts 2:1–6: When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place. 2 And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. 3 And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them. 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance. 5Now there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men from every nation under heaven. 6 And at this sound the multitude came together, and they were bewildered, because each one was hearing them speak in his own language.
Acts 2:14: But Peter, standing with the eleven, lifted up his voice and addressed them: “Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and give ear to my words.
2. Scripture says the coming of the Holy Spirit filled a house, it doesn’t mention the Upper Room.
3. The temple is referred to as the House of the Lord, or just house, in many places in the Bible.
John 2:17: The Zeal for your house will consume me.
Matthew 21:12-13: And Jesus entered the temple area and drove out all those who were selling and buying on the temple grounds, and He overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who were selling doves. 13 And He said to them, “It is written: ‘My house will be called a house of prayer’; but you are making it a den of robbers.”
House can also refer to just a covered area as well.
At the southern side of the Temple Mount, just above the Southern Stairs, was the Royal Stoa. It was a public meeting place with a large roof. This could have been a likely place where Pentecost began.
4. The Hebrew word for "house" in Acts 2:2 is "Har Ha Bait," which means "the mountain of THE house," or simply put, "the dwelling place of God." This meaning would support the idea that Pentecost most likely took place on the Temple Mount, and then the 3,000 who were saved were then baptized in the many mikvehs by the Southern Stairs.
5. The coming of the Holy Spirit happened at nine in the morning, which was the time of morning prayers at the temple. The disciples regularly went to the temple at the times of prayer.
Acts 2:15: For these people are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour [9:00 am] of the day.
Acts 3:1: Now Peter and John were going up to the temple at the hour of prayer, the ninth hour.
6. Many scholars say that during the Passover in Christ’s time that Jerusalem swelled to around 150,000 people or more.
7. Peter spoke boldly as he was enabled by the Holy Spirit
Acts 2:14-21: But Peter, taking his stand with the other eleven, raised his voice and declared to them: “Men of Judea and all you who live in Jerusalem, [n]know this, and pay attention to my words. 15 For these people are not drunk, as you assume, since it is only the third hour of the day; 16 but this is what has been spoken through the prophet Joel: 17 ‘And it shall be in the last days,’ God says, ‘That I will pour out My Spirit on all mankind; and your sons and your daughters will prophesy, and your young men will see visions, and your old men will have dreams; 18 and even on My male and female servants, and they will prophesy. 19 And I will display wonders in the sky above and signs on the earth below, blood, fire, and vapor of smoke. 20 The sun will be turned into darkness and the moon into blood, before the great and glorious day of the Lord comes. 21 And it shall be that everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’
8. Peter's message was based on Old Testament prophecy.
Acts 2:22-28: “Men of Israel, listen to these words: Jesus the Nazarene, a Man attested to you by God with miracles and wonders and signs which God performed through Him in your midst, just as you yourselves know— 23 this Man, delivered over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and put Him to death. 24 But God raised Him from the dead, putting an end to the agony of death, since it was impossible for Him to be held in its power. 25 For David says of Him, ‘I saw the Lord continually before me, because He is at my right hand, so that I will not be shaken. 26 Therefore my heart was glad and my tongue was overjoyed; moreover my flesh also will live in hope; 27 For You will not abandon my soul to Hades, nor will You allow Your Holy One to undergo decay. 28 You have made known to me the ways of life; You will make me full of gladness with Your presence.’
9. Jesus fulfilled the Old Testament prophecies concerning the promised Messiah.
Acts 2:29-36: “Brothers, I may confidently say to you regarding the patriarch David that he both died and was buried, and his tomb is with us to this day. 30 So because he was a prophet and knew that God had sworn to him with an oath to seat one of his descendants on his throne, 31 he looked ahead and spoke of the resurrection of the Christ, that He was neither abandoned to Hades, nor did His flesh suffer decay. 32 It is this Jesus whom God raised up, a fact to which we are all witnesses. 33 Therefore, since He has been exalted at the right hand of God, and has received the promise of the Holy Spirit from the Father, He has poured out this which you both see and hear. 34 For it was not David who ascended into heaven, but he himself says: ‘The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at My right hand, 35 Until I make Your enemies a footstool for Your feet.”’ 36 Therefore let all the house of Israel know for certain that God has made Him both Lord and Christ—this Jesus whom you crucified.”
10. The response of many who heard this message.
Acts 2:37-42: Now when they heard this, they were pierced to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brothers, what are we to do?” 38 Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 For the promise is for you and your children and for all who are far away, as many as the Lord our God will call to Himself.” 40 And with many other words he solemnly testified and kept on urging them, saying, “Be saved from this perverse generation!” 41 So then, those who had received his word were baptized; and that day there were added about three thousand souls. 42 They were continually devoting themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.
11. The Temple Mount and Southern Stair area could easily have handled the large crowd of 15,000 – 30,000 who gathered at Pentecost.
12. Acts 2:41 says 3,000 were saved and baptized. Around the Southern Stairs are many mikveh cleansing pools that could have been used for baptizing those who were saved.
13. The Southern part of the Temple Mount would have been a natural place for Pentecost to happen as it was a center of public activities.
14. The Upper Room is over one-half mile (.83 Km.) from the Temple Mount, which is a long distance away. Most likely, too far away for a large crowd to move from to the Temple Mount area for baptisms, etc.
15. The Upper Room area was a residential neighborhood, and there's no reason 15,000-30,000 people would have been there when the events of Pentecost happened that drew such a large crowd.
16. The Southern Stairs and southern part of the Temple Mount is the best candidate for Pentecost as they could easily handle 15,000 – 30,000 people. This area also had all the mikvehs necessary for baptizing and space to handle such a large crowd.
Faith Lesson from Pentecost
1. Pentecost is a fulfillment of many Old Testament prophecies.
2. It’s amazing to see the many pictures in the Old Testament that are fulfilled in the New Testament.
The Old Testament Passover lamb is fulfilled by Christ the New Testament Passover Lamb.
The Jewish nation was formally born at Mount Sinai on Pentecost. The Christian Church was born at Pentecost as well.
The Passover lamb was sacrificed on Passover afternoon at 3:00 pm. Christ died on the Cross as our sacrifice at 3:00 pm on Passover as well.
3. Do we understand how prophecy fits into validating God’s Word?
4. Do we understand the meta-narrative (God’s large master plan) of God’s story?
5. Do I see how God gave examples and pieces to His meta-narrative in the Old Testament and then fulfilled and amplified these examples in the New Testament?
6. Have I received the Holy Spirit as a result of trusting Christ as my Lord and Savior?
7. Have I been baptized?
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