I will continue analyzing a book written by Robert Cornuke titled, Temple: Amazing New Discoveries That Change Everything About The Location Of Solomon’s Temple. This book’s startling thesis asserts that the Jewish Temples (Solomon’s and Herod’s) were located south of the Temple Mount in the ancient City of David and that the entire Temple Mount was the Antonia Fortress where Roman troops were garrisoned.
Cornuke’s third major argument relates to the Jewish Temple’s need for abundant water in order to wash away the blood of animal sacrifices. He asserts that because of this need, the Temple had to be situated in the City of David over the Gihon Spring. He cites two biblical passages — Joel 3:18 and Ezekiel 47:1-7 — to prove that the Gihon Spring was under the Temple.
The passage in Joel says, “…and in that day the mountains will drip with sweet wine, and the hills will flow with milk, and all the brooks of Judah will flow with water; and a spring will go out from the house of the LORD to water the valley of Shittim.” Similarly, the passage in Ezekiel says that water will flow from under the threshold of the Temple. The water will form a river that will flow to the Dead Sea, and when it reaches that point, it will refresh the sea and bring it alive with “living creatures.”
The problem with these passages is that they are both presented in a Millennial context, and therefore they have nothing to do with the biblical temples. The verses are talking about the Millennial Temple which will be built after Jesus returns. And keep in mind that the Bible says that when the Second Coming occurs, there will be the greatest earthquake in history — one that will impact the entire world (Revelation 6:12-17 and Revelation 16:18-20). Every island will be moved. Mountains will be lowered, plains will be lifted, and the topography of Jerusalem will be drastically changed (Zechariah 14:10). So, there is no way that Cornuke can prove that these verses are talking about the Gihon Spring.
The fact that the topography of Jerusalem is going to be radically revised is attested to by the size of the Millennial Temple that is described in Ezekiel 40-48. Bible prophecy expert Dr. John C. Whitcomb describes it this way:11
The area of the Temple courts (500 x 500 “reeds,” or about one square mile) would be larger than the entire ancient walled city of Jerusalem, and the holy portion for priests and Levites (20,000 x 25,000 reeds, or about 40 x 50 miles) would cover an area six times the size of greater London today and could not possibly be placed within present-day Palestine, that is between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea (Ezekiel 47:18), to say nothing of the “portion of the prince” on either side of this area (Ezekiel 45:7, 47:21). The Millennial Jerusalem would be about 40 miles in circumference and thus ten times the circumference of the ancient city. Furthermore, it would be somewhat north of the present site of the city, and the Temple area would be about ten miles north of that, on the way to Samaria!
The map below (figuire 5) shows the size of Millennial Israel and the gigantic size of the Temple area. As you can see, the Temple area will be so big that it will extend over the Jordan River as it exists today.12
It is true that the Temples required a lot of water for the cleansing of the sacrificial altars. But that water was supplied by an aqueduct that Solomon built about 950 BC. It transported water to the Temple Mount from the Spring of Atan which was located near Bethlehem.13
In the fifth segment, I’ll analyze Robert Cornuke’s cornerstone argument that the Jewish temples resided in the City of David.
11) John C. Whitcomb, “The Millennial Temple of Ezekiel 40-48,” www.middletownbiblechurch.org/proph/templemi.htm, page 4.
12) Tim LaHaye and Thomas Ice, Charting the End Times (Eugene, OR: Harvest House, 2001).
13) The Interactive Bible, “The Jerusalem Water Aqueduct 12km from the Solomon’s Pools,” www. bible.ca/archeology/Biblearcheology-jerusalem-temple-mount-threshing-floor-aqueduct.htm.