Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and the Arab party Ra’am clashed on Sunday after Jews were allowed to sing and pray in certain parts of Temple Mount on the occasion of Tisha B’Av, in which Jews mourn the destruction of the two temples and a variety of other calamities.
Ra’am, which is a critical faction in Bennett’s razor-thin coalition that spans both right-wing and left-wing lawmakers, was outraged after footage emerged showing Jews, who are normally not allowed to recite prayers or hymns on the Temple Mount, singing Israel’s national anthem and even praying discreetly in a secluded area.
“Settlers and MKs who trespass into the Al-Aqsa Mosque could lead to disturbances and a regional religious war,” Ra’am warned. “We will not allow this to happen – we won’t tolerate prayer and the singing of Hatikvah in the mosque that is under Islamic ownership, all 35 acres.”
Bennett quickly tweeted, both in Hebrew and in Arabic, that the latest events do not reflect any change of the rules that prohibit Jewish religious practices in the plaza, which has two of the most sacred sites in Muslim tradition.The statement read: “Prime Minister Naftali Bennett spoke with Public Security Minister Bar-Lev and Israel Police Inspector-General Shabtai and thanked them for managing the events on the Temple Mount with responsibility and consideration while maintaining freedom of worship for Jews on the Mount. Prime Minister Bennett emphasized that freedom of worship on the Temple Mount will be fully preserved for Muslims as well, who will soon be marking the fast of the Day of Arafah and the Eid al-Adha.”
Earlier, brief clashes erupted between Israeli police and Palestinians at Al-Aqsa Mosque over visits by Jews.
No serious injuries were reported in what police described as stone-throwing early in the day by several Palestinian youngsters who it said were then dispersed.
Palestinian officials said police forcefully evacuated Muslim worshippers to clear the way for Jewish visitors and fired rubber-coated bullets during the confrontation in one of the most sensitive venues in the Arab-Israeli conflict.
All was quiet by the time Muslim noon prayers were held, but the incident drew condemnation by the Palestinian Authority.
Israeli media reports put the number of Jewish visitors who walked through the Jerusalem plaza at around 1,300.
In a statement, the Palestinian Authority said it held “the Israeli occupation government fully responsible for the escalation resulting from the Israeli incursion in the Al Aqsa mosque complex in occupied Jerusalem”.
The PA called the Jewish visits provocative and a “serious threat to “security and stability”.
After the spate of violence, Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett directed that Jewish visits there “continue, while maintaining order at the site.”
The area is in Jerusalem’s walled Old City and part of the territory Israel captured in a 1967 Middle East war.
HD Editor’s Note: Why Is This News Biblically Relevant?
Throughout the Bible, there is written an extensive history of the temple mount. It is recorded how King David purchased the temple (1 Chronicles 21:18–26) and prepared the material for his son Solomon to build (1 Chronicles 22). That temple continued until it was destroyed by the Babylonians (2 Kings 25:8-17). 70 years later, after the destruction of the first temple, a second temple was built (Ezra 1-6). That second temple was as well destroyed, as prophesied by Jesus Christ in Mark 13:1-2, by the Romans in 70 AD.
That brings us to today. The rejection of the Jewish rights to the temple mount is caused by a rejection of God’s infallible word and the same antisemitism that has plagued the Jewish people since their enslavement in the land of Egypt. It is shocking to consider that the Muslim claim to the temple mount is “over-rinding” the Jewish history considering the claimed reference in the Quran, “the farthest mosque,” is unlikely and unproven to be speaking of the temple mount.
Whether they believe it’s possible or not, Palestinian leaders use fear of a rebuilt Jewish Temple to stir up their constituents to the point of violence. Even proposals to rebuild the temple without harming the mosques draws a frenzy of rage from the Muslims. No matter what Israel promises, they fully expect the Jews to destroy the Dome of the Rock and the Al-Aqsa Mosque.
It’s interesting that so many Palestinians are convinced that there will be another Jewish Temple on the site. Few of them know it, but they’re agreeing with the Bible. It says that before the mid-point of the seven-year period known as Daniel’s 70th Week, the temple will be rebuilt and sacrifices will be offered again.
Daniel 11:31 says that forces from the Antichrist “will arise, desecrate the sanctuary fortress, and do away with the regular sacrifice. And they will set up the abomination of desolation.” To “do away with the regular sacrifice,” and to “set up the abomination of desolation” requires that the temple be rebuilt.
In the meantime, to understand the Temple Mount hysteria among Muslims, we need to understand the spiritual dimensions of the problem. This is not just a real estate dispute. It is about principalities and powers. Satan will stir anyone he can, as much as he can, in an attempt to keep the holy place in a state of desecration.
But he cannot stop God’s plan. The mighty can never defeat the Almighty.
Unbelieving religious Jews will rebuild the false temple and offer false animal sacrifices during the first part of the Tribulation. (Daniel 11:31) Then the “man of lawlessness”, the Antichrist, will desecrate that false temple of God by taking his seat in the Holy of Holies, displaying himself as being God. (2 Thessalonians 2:3-4). That event will start the last half of the Tribulation. That will start 3½ years of the greatest horrors yet known to mankind. It will end with the visible Coming of THE ALMIGHTY, the Lord Jesus Christ. He will rule for 1000 years of peace. Then is the Last Judgment of all unbelievers of all ages. He will then establish forever the New Heaven and Earth.