Reduce Tensions? Admit the Truth

 Sometimes the best way to handle conflict is to own up to the hidden realities of a situation and adjust one’s actions accordingly.


Israel is currently embroiled in a wave of terror. The Arabs claim that we want to rebuild the Temple in Jerusalem, and we respond by saying that we do not.


A scale model of the Great Temple in Jerusalem.

OK. Enough is enough. It's time to be honest with ourselves, as well as with others. Israel does indeed want to rebuild the Great Jerusalem Temple, at the very site where it belongs: the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. And what's more: Israel will need the help of ALL the world's nations to accomplish the task.


Don't listen to Israel's present secular leadership, God bless them. While they pay lip service to traditional Judaism, they are only partially living by its tenets, and have just a cursory understanding of the national prime directive as described in the Torah and the Writings of the Hebrew Prophets.


Listen instead to what the rest of the world is saying. All throughout the Arab world, it is a given that Israel is working to change the status quo by allowing Jewish prayer on Mt. Moriah with the eventual goal of rebuilding the Holy Temple. Ask Mahmoud Abbas - he says it publically. Even the New York Times claims that it is Israel's activities that are behind the violent Arab revolt sweeping across Israel.


Perhaps it is a part of Muslim consciousness that the Jews will eventually rebuild the Temple at its original location. For example, when the Umayyad caliph Abd al-Malik built the present Dome of the Rock structure at the top of Mt. Moriah, what was he doing? It wasn't a mosque: that role was held by another building, Al-Aqsa, that the Rashidun caliph Umar had built some years before. According to some, Abd al-Malik wanted to preserve the revered location of Solomon's Temple, understanding that the Jews would come back some day to rebuild it.


Ancient Herodian-period stones at the foundations of the Temple Mount.

So it comes down to the perception of more than a billion Muslims against that of the current-day Israeli leadership, out of touch with the true inner destiny of the Israelite nation. In this case you can believe Israel's enemies. Perhaps they are picking up signals that Israel is quietly and unconsciously sending out. Or maybe it just makes sense that, having returned to national life within the family of nations after a 2,000 year hiatus, we are only now truly ready to begin rebuilding the centerpiece of our society.


Once we 'fess up to this fact - and as mentioned, the nations of the world, unlike many Israelis, already know this to be the case - then we can take the brave step of:



That's right. After all, the greatest architectural and engineering project in the history of the world cannot be handled by Israel alone. The new Jerusalem Temple will be for everybody. In the words of the Hebrew Prophet Isaiah:

“I will bring them to My holy mountain,

and I will cause them to rejoice in My house of prayer.
Their burnt offerings and their sacrifices will be accepted upon My altar,
because My house will be called a house of prayer for all the peoples.   

Says the Lord God,

Who gathers in the dispersed of Israel …” (Isaiah Chapter 56, Verses 7-8).

Since all the peoples on earth will have a stake in the building and operation of the Temple, they too must become financial, logistical and moral stakeholders in its reconstruction, each nation according to its preference and abilities.


Light pouring in from the Temple Mount to the streets of Jerusalem’s Old City.

In summary: it's time to come to terms with the fact that Israel is indeed, sooner or later, going to rebuild the Jerusalem Temple on its original site: just as Israel's enemies claim - correctly so - that Israel intends to do. Owning up to this fact publically and officially can have the effect of reassuring the nations of the world that their suspicions are correct. Certainly our repeated denials don't seem to help any.


Once we bite the bullet and tell the truth to the world, we can then take the further, bolder step of asking for their help in this magnificent project for the spiritual health of all humanity. After all, they are going to get a lot of the newly rebuilt complex:

And it will be,

in the end of days -
The mountain of the House of God will be established
At the head of the mountains,
And lifted high above other hills;
And all the nations will stream towards it.

And many peoples will go, and say:

“Let’s go, and go up to the mountain of God,
To the house of the Lord of Jacob -

And he will teach us of his ways,

And we will walk in his paths.”

Because from Zion will go out the Teaching,

And the word of God - from Jerusalem.
And he will arbitrate between the nations,
And he will reprove many peoples;

And they will beat their swords into plow blades

And their spears into shearing clippers.

Nation will not lift up the sword against nation,

And they will no longer learn war (Isaiah Chapter 2, Verses 2-4).

Imagine: ALL the world's nations working together to build a House for God's glory, a place where all the people of the world can connect to the Divine. As Theodor Herzl, the founding father of modern Israel once stated: "If you will it, it is no legend."