“My dwelling place will be with them; I will be their God, and they will be my people. Then the nations will know that I the Lord make Israel holy, when my sanctuary is among them forever.”Ezekiel 37:27-28, NIV
There are many reasons to expect a rebuilt temple in the last days based on specific prophetic passages. The most commonly cited verses are found in Daniel 9:24-27 and 2 Thessalonians 2:1-4; however, I would like to point out that these verses in Ezekiel 37 also indicate that there will be a rebuilt temple in the Last Days.
Ezekiel 37:27-28 are good verses for supporting the idea that there truly will be a temple rebuilt in the period leading up to the Great Tribulation. We know this because it says that the nations will know that Israel is “holy”—which could also be expressed as his “chosen people” in this context because holy means “set apart”—when God restores the sanctuary. Therefore, we should expect the temple to be rebuilt as another major sign that the time for God’s judgment will soon be arriving. The only other options for interpreting this passage are that it is, 1) only a reference to the existence of the temple in the past, or 2) a reference to the temple in the Millennium. However, I think both of those other options can be ruled out.
First, that this was a past event only, doesn’t make sense because it says, “when my sanctuary is among them forever.” Once the temple was destroyed in 70 AD, then this verse became disqualified as providing a sign that God makes Israel holy. Unless of course it gets rebuilt…
Next, if we are talking solely about a millennial temple, then we would be talking about the time when Jesus Christ is ruling and reigning on Earth. In those days, it will be Jesus Christ ruling from Jerusalem that demonstrates that God makes Israel holy, and therefore, I don’t think a reference to the temple as a sign would be necessary.
This leaves us with only one reasonable conclusion. The rebuilding of the temple will be a sign for the nations as part of the restoration of Israel, before the Great Tribulation of the last three and half years of Daniel’s seventieth week. Of course, it should also be a big sign for Christians, and something that spurs us to “lift up our heads, because our redemption is drawing near” (Luke 21:28).
Finally, the call to rebuild the temple as a “house of prayer for all nations” (Isaiah 56:7) has already begun. If you haven’t seen this interview of Yehuda Glick by Joel Rosenberg, it’s well worth the 20 minutes it takes to watch it. ALL ISRAEL NEWS
If you’d like to find out more about the temple and where it should be rebuilt, I hope you will order a copy of my new book, THE TEMPLE REVEALED: The True Location of the Jewish Temple Hidden in Plain Sight.