“As the navel is set in the centre of the human body, so is the land of Israel the navel of the world is situated in the centre of the world,” it is written. A navel conjures up a picture of an umbilical chord, a curling twisting link to the Mother, the feeder, the nurturing one. We also read: “and Jerusalem in the centre of the land of Israel,” and we note that the centre of attention is there. At one time Jerusalem was not the capital city, but it was to here that David took the head of Goliath to bury it. At that time I believe Hebron was the capital, so one wonders if he buried it at Golgotha, the place of a skull, though I have digressed with that thought. It is also written that “the sanctuary in the centre of Jerusalem, and the holy place in the centre of the sanctuary, and the ark in the centre of the holy place, (that is the Ark of the Covenant which we connect with Moses) “and the foundation stone before the holy place, because from it the world was founded.” Midrash Tanchuma, Qedoshim.
This is the foundation stone mentioned in the Midrash, which is in the Muslim Dome of the Rock. Here is the place where Abraham went to sacrifice his son Isaac, although the Muslims believe that it was Ishmael who he was supposed to sacrifice. That is what is written in the Koran, which was written years after those of the Jews, and after the death and resurrection of Jesus. Since it is accepted in Christianity that the story of the sacrifice of Isaac was a shadow picture of the sacrifice of Jesus, this idea is not in keeping with Christian thinking. It also doesn’t seem to fit neatly with Judaic thought either, since Ishmael, although the firstborn was not the child of promise, the legitimate son of Abraham. Also there is the issue that all sacrifices in Judaism had to be without spot or blemish, and when illegitimate children were not permitted to enter the Temple, then Ishmael could not be seen as a fitting sacrifice. I have seen Jews in Jerusalem buying items for Sukkot (Tabernacles or the Feast of Booths) and these items have to meet specifications. There, in the market, I have seen Rabbis with jewellers eye glasses going so far as to examine the citron (etrog) for inclusion in the “four kinds” to get the best of the best, although I’m told all are kosher. Abraham had faith in God that He would provide himself a sacrifice, and a ram was found there caught in a thicket. Key word in that phrase is “himself” as God later did provide Himself as a sacrifice in the form of Jesus, the Son of God, and part of the triune Godhead.
It was also here that Jacob lay down and slept, dreaming of a ladder going upwards towards Heaven, which had angels ascending and descending on it. This dream is seen by New Age adherents as evidence of a shamanic experience and of portals to the Otherworld. This neo-pagan belief aside, it is significant that Jacob named the spot he was dreaming in Bethel, which means “Gateway to Heaven” (Hebrew) and the Christian Bible translated the name to mean “House of God,” yet New Age adherents see the angels ascending and descending as evidence of reincarnation. They think of it as souls coming and going from Heaven, an idea first put forward by the philosopher Philo in around 50 AD, so nothing new really. The Midrash explains that Jacob, as a holy man, was always accompanied by angels. Aptly, since Mount Moriah was to be the future home of the Temple in Jerusalem, there is more of significance. The ladder symbolises the “bridge” between Heaven and earth, since prayers and sacrifices offered in the Temple were a connection between God and His chosen, the Jewish people. The ladder also alludes to the Giving of the Torah, another connection between heaven and earth, the word of God. Interestingly, the Hebrew word for ladder is sulam — סלם — and the place the Torah was given, Sinai — סיני — have the same numerical value, since all Hebrew letters have a corresponding number. This is significant in Kaballah. When thinking of a navel and umbilical cord, the link between the foundation stone and the “Founder” makes sense.
This was also the rock where the stone tablets of Moses were hewn from and where the Ark of the Covenant which held them would rest when brought into the Holy of Holies. The Ark, known as the footstool of God, was placed in the “Gateway to Heaven.”
In Judaism, this stone is the same altar where Adam, Cain, Abel, and Noah made sacrifices from, according to Pirke de Rabbi Eliezar 31.
Image via Wikipedia
There is a sacred history connected to this particular spot on the Temple Mount. In 2 Chronicles 3:1 we read that Solomon began to build the house of the Lord here. Here was where God had spoken to his father David. The verse also mentions that provision had been made in the Place of David, in the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite, for the building of the Temple. Jebusites were Canaanites, descendants of Ham, son of Noah. The threshing floor is where Ruth met with Boaz who became her kinsman redeemer, so here again is a shadow picture of Jesus as redeemer. The grinding stones are traditionally thought of as one male and one female and grinding is symbolised as the act of marriage in Job 31:10. This speaks of the bride and bridegroom, symbolic of the Lord and His people, the bride, and it hints of the second coming. However, the threshing floor of Boaz was in Bethlehem, but these connections are worth considering.
Rabbi Moshe Alshich, in Torat Moshe, states that this place for the building of the Temple would be holier than any other place in earth. It was a place prepared for His permanent residence. Where the Shechina was manifested in other places temporarily, here was the place where there would be a constant presence of God. No wonder Jacob had a dream of angels when he slept in the holiest place on earth. However, Sunni Muslims see the Kaaba as the holiest site and the large Mosque in Mecca the Masjid-al-Haram, to be the second holiest. The Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem is considered the third holiest. This is near the Dome of the Rock.
The Temple Mount is the place where the building of the third Temple will take place as prophesied in the Torah and Bible. The Temple Institute have confirmed that they have made replicas of all the furnishings of the second Temple which Jesus predicted would be destroyed and was destroyed by the Romans under Titus in 70 CE. Blueprints for the proposed third Temple are reported to have been published. Levites are being trained in performing sacrifices and have bought their priestly garments. They are ready and waiting. These video clips prove it.
Prophesy is being fulfilled before your very eyes!
Isaiah 56:7 states of the prophesied third Temple “For my house shall be called a house of prayer for all nations.” All nations, not just the Jews. Interesting?