Gary concludes his interview with Paul Edward Stevenson on the Last Man Standing radio show about Israel, Hamas, and popular prophecy.

When Jesus’ disciples heard His prediction of “desolation” for the temple and city (Matt. 23:29-39) when He “came out from the temple” (24:1), they “came up to point out the temple buildings to Him,” as if to say, “Lord, You can’t mean this temple that’s adorned with beautiful stones and gifts given in fulfillment of vows to God” (Luke 21:5). But Jesus confirmed His pronouncement of judgment by declaring that “not one stone here shall be left upon another, which will not be torn down.” Notice Jesus said, “Not one stone here shall be left upon another.” Jesus was not describing what would happen to some future rebuilt temple, of which the New Testament says nothing. He was speaking about the destruction of the temple that stood before the disciples at that time.

Was the temple dismantled so that not one stone was left upon another? Yes. The only written eye-witness account of the Roman destruction of the Temple is from the Jewish historian Flavius Josephus (AD 37-c. 100), a former leader of the Jewish revolt who became a trusted ally of Vespasian, from whom he took the family name of Flavius. A detailed account of the destruction of Jerusalem is found in his The War of the Jews. Using Josephus and other Jewish historical sources, Adam Clarke describes the complete destruction of the temple:

“Caesar gave orders that they should now demolish the whole city and temple,… except the three towers … and a part of the western wall, and these were spared; but, for all the rest of the wall, it was laid so completely even with the ground, by those who dug it up to the foundation, that there was left nothing to make those that came thither believe it had ever been inhabited.” Maimonides, a Jewish Rabbin,… says, “That the very foundations of the temple were dug up, according to the Roman custom.” His words are these: “On that ninth day of the month Ab, fatal for vengeance, the wicked Turnus Rufus, of the children of Edom, plowed up the temple, and the places round about it, that the saying might be fulfilled, Zion shall be plowed as a field” [Jer. 26:18; Micah 3:12]. This Turnus, or rather Terentius Rufus, was left general of the army by Titus, with commission, as the Jews suppose, to destroy the city and the temple, as Josephus observes.

Before the plowing up of the temple stones, the temple had been set ablaze. Michael Wilkins, in his commentary on Mark, writes, “Jesus’ prediction in verse 2 says nothing of fire.” This is true. There are many historical elements related to the destruction of the temple that are not mentioned by Jesus in the Olivet Discourse. Even so, in Matthew 22 Jesus said the following in His parable of the marriage feast: “But the king was enraged, and he sent his armies and destroyed those murderers and set their city on fire” (v. 7; see Neh. 4:2; Psalm 79:1; Jer. 9:11). The following is an excerpted account from Josephus:

Most of the slain were peaceful citizens, weak and unarmed, and they were butchered where they were caught. The heap of corpses mounted higher and higher about the altar; a stream of blood flowed down the Temple’s steps, and the bodies of those slain at the top slipped to the bottom… While the Temple was ablaze, the attackers plundered it, and countless people who were caught by them were slaughtered. There was no pity for age and no regard was accorded rank; children and old men, laymen and priests, alike were butchered; every class was pursued and crushed in the grip of war, whether they cried out for mercy or offered resistance… The Temple Mount, everywhere enveloped in flames, seemed to be boiling over from its base; yet the blood seemed more abundant than the flames and the numbers of the slain greater than those of the slayers. The soldiers climbed over heaps of bodies as they chased the fugitives.

Rebuilt-temple advocates Thomas Ice and Randall Price admit, “There are no Bible verses that say, ‘There is going to be a third temple.’” Having said this, they still claim “that there will be a Jewish Temple in Jerusalem at least by the midpoint of the seven-year tribulation period.”

Wars and Rumors of Wars

Wars and Rumors of Wars

Jesus predicted that He would return within the time period of that generation alone. Unfortunately, too many Christians are giving the wrong answer when skeptics claim Jesus was mistaken. Everything Jesus said would happen before that generation passed away did happen.

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Part Two of Two. Gary is interviewed by Paul Edward Stevenson on the Last Man Standing radio show about Israel, Hamas, and popular prophecy. Most people who believe that the events in Gaza right now are fulfilling Bible prophecy have no idea what their system actually says about what awaits Israel in the “end times.”

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