Satan’s Tribulation Temple vs. God’s Eternal Temple

 

“And there was given me a reed like unto a rod: and the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein. But the court which is without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months. And the temple of God was opened in heaven, and there was seen in his temple the ark of his testament: and there were lightnings, and voices and thunderings, and an earthquake, and great hail” (Rev.11:1,2,19).

 

   (Rev.11) starts with Satan’s tribulation temple in Jerusalem and ends up with the true temple of God opened in heaven. We see the antithesis between Satan’s temple built on earth and desecrated by his Antichrist and God’s holy temple in heaven. Verses 1 and 2 shows the temple that is going to be built during the great tribulation. During the first part of the tribulation, the Israelites will be under the protectorate of the Antichrist-President of the U.S. who has finally brokered a Mid East peace treaty between Israel and the Arab nations. During this time Israel will have a semi-peaceful life and will be allowed to build their temple. When the tribulation temple is built, then comes the two witnesses.

 

   I believe Satan’s tribulation temple will not be completed until the true temple of God, made up of all born again saints, is raptured up to heaven. Then will the two witnesses boldly stand in front of the new temple and preach like Stephen, the first Christian martyr (witness) did – “Howbeit the Most High dwelleth not in temples made with hands ….” (Acts7:48). Then the Jews murdered God’s true witness Stephen and the two witnesses will also be martyred in the same street of Jerusalem. Jesus told the Jews – “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up. But he spake of the temple of his body” – (Jn.2:19,21). When Jesus comes back He will build the physical millennial temple of God with his carpenter’s hands that is prophesied in the last chapter of Ezekiel, and we shall help Him.

 

   The tribulation temple is originally constructed for Jewish worship and the renewal of their ancient animal sacrifices. But very soon the temple becomes desecrated by the Antichrist who shows himself as God in the new rebuilt temple – “…and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God” (2 Thes.2:3,4). “And he (Antichrist) shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifices and the oblation to cease… And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that maketh desolate set up…” – (Dan.9:27 and 12:11). Apparently the image of the Beast – Antichrist is set up in the temple and worshipped there and worldwide. It becomes Satan’s temple.

 

   For this reason it is most significant that John is told to measure not only the temple and the altar but also the worshippers. It is saying in effect that God is the judge of man’s worship and man’s character and all must give account to him. He is showing us that this ungodly temple does not measure up to His divine standards. This earthly temple reveals man as he really is – earth bound to his religion. The tabernacle which Moses was instructed to make was designed after a heavenly pattern with all its features and worship procedure according to God’s way. It was God’s appointed way of meeting with sinful men in this world. God commanded Moses “Look that thou make them after their pattern, which was shewed thee in the mount” – (Ex.25:40). Later, Solomon’s temple was built after the design of the tabernacle. And everything in the temple and tabernacle from the high priest to the sacrifices pointed to our great High Priest and perfect, supreme sacrifice, the Lord Jesus Christ, who died on Calvary’s tree. The tabernacle and temple were copies of the true temple in heaven.

 

   The tribulation temple worship has deteriorated to actually being against Christ. Earlier temples pointed directly to Him, but this one rejects Him. For it repudiates all that He did on the cross. Jerusalem itself will be so spiritually corrupt that it will be like Sodom and Egypt – (Rev.11:18). Jerusalem today is worldly like Egypt and has made homosexuality legal in Israel. This Antichrist worship in the tribulation temple culminates in the forced worship of the image of the Beast.

 

   God destroyed the Jewish temple in A.D. 70  by the Romans and He dwells now not in temples made of wood and stone, but in saved, sanctified bodies made of flesh and bone. God dwells in a human living temple, in the bodies of His born again saints. “And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? For ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people” – (2 Cor.6:16). The tribulation temple is totally antichrist with its rejection of Christ’s sacrifice on Calvary and so it’s no wonder that it becomes the place of the blasphemous worship of Antichrist. The only furniture in the temple mentioned by God is the ‘altar’ of burnt offerings where the animals were sacrificed and He’s showing the world that this temple, brokered by Antichrist, repudiates God’s perfect, supreme sacrifice of His Son on the cross.

 

   The Apostle John was commanded by Christ to leave out the measuring of the outer court of the Gentiles – “For it is given unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months – (vs.2). (Lk.21:24) also mentions the “times of the Gentiles” when it says – “And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.” This outer court of the Gentiles, as well as all Jerusalem, will be trodden under foot by the Gentiles until Armageddon is over and the Lord Jesus comes back to earth at the end of the tribulation. The Jews will never rule over all of Jerusalem till Christ returns and Jerusalem will be His throne to rule over the whole earth.

 

   Yes, in (Rev.11:1,2) we see Satan’s temple built by the Jews in Jerusalem and desecrated by the worship of Antichrist-Beast. In contrast to Satan’s false worldly temple we see the true, eternal temple of God opened in heaven in the last verse of (Rev. Chapter 11) – “And the temple of God was opened in heaven, and there was seen in his temple the ark of his testament: and there were lightnings, and voices, and thunderings, and an earthquake, and great hail.” There is an antithesis between God’s temple in heaven and Satan’s temple on earth in Jerusalem – between the heavenly, holy Jerusalem and the earthly, unholy Jerusalem. When the tribulation temple begins to be built, then come the two witnesses.

 

   The earthly, Antichrist temple is desecrated by the Beast, but its counterpart in heaven reflects the righteousness and majesty of God. The heavenly ark of the testament, which in its earthly equivalent originally contained God’s righteous laws, speaks of God’s righteousness in Christ. And our High Priest who shed His blood on the mercy seat. “To put away sin by the sacrifice of himself” – (Heb.9:26). And so it is written – “… The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign forever and ever” – (Rev.11:15). It’s called a “testament” now and not a covenant because the testator, the Lord Jesus, has died on the cross. The covenant became a testament when Christ died on the cross – (Heb.9:15-18).

 

   With the opening of God’s temple in heaven, there are accompanying lightnings, thunderings, an earthquake and great hail. God is now going to deal in summary judgment with the earth. By building this blasphemous temple and worshipping the Beast as God and totally rejecting God’s supreme sacrifice of His beloved Son on the cross, the wrath of God now falls. “And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come..” (Rev.11:18). Man’s rebellion has been building up to a mighty crescendo but it will be bought to an end when Christ returns.

 

  The phrase, “Thy wrath is come” is a repulsive statement to a generation that has been deceived with false theology which emphasizes the love of God but ignores the holiness and righteousness of God. Today there is no fear of God among the masses. Most believe that God is incapable of anger or wrath. Such people need to be reminded of the truth of (Rom.1:18) “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who told the truth in unrighteousness”. In God’s longsuffering He has held back His wrath, but He will not always do so. This is seen in (Rom.2:4,5) – “Or despiseth thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering: not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance? But after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God.” And this “revelation of the righteous judgment of God” points right to the book of Revelation and the great tribulation.

 

   Here in (Rev.11) God is contrasting the holiness of His temple in heaven with the ungodliness of the Antichrist temple built by the Jews in the tribulation. The first sign of God’s wrath shown with His opened temple in heaven is “lightnings.” And I want to remind you that we have a man running for president of the U.S., the most powerful office on earth, named Barrack which name means ‘lightning’ in our Bible. Are you watching today?

 

   Are you a member of God’s holy spiritual temple not made with hands. Solomon’s temple was built without the sound of hammer, so the Holy Spirit silently places each saved saint into God’s living temple through the baptism of the Holy Spirit. “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free…” – (I Cor.12:13). No human standing in a church made by hands can baptize you with water unto salvation. Only the Lord Jesus Christ can baptize you with the Holy Spirit into the spiritual temple of God not made with hands.

 

   God’s temple today is made of born again people of every color, every nationality, speaking every language on earth “…For thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation” – (Rev.5:9). We born again people belong to the household of God, we are building upon the one foundation, Jesus Christ. He is the chief cornerstone and in Him all the building – every believer, Jew and Gentile – is framed together and is continually growing into the holy temple of God. And God inhabits the building through His Spirit. How wonderful it is that we are the tabernacle of God. God lives in us. We possess the third person of the Godhead – The Holy Spirit. We are the habitation of God – He abides in us. Jesus said – “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up. But he spake of the temple of his body” – (Jn.2:19,21). The body of Christ is God’s temple and we who are saved are a part of it.

 

   Unsaved people around the world make pilgrimages to holy places and shrines and sacred spots and temples and cathedrals etc, foolishly. God is not there. The most holy place, the spot that is supremely sacred to God, is the place that God Himself has shown as His habitation, His worshipping temple. I am speaking of the heart of every born again believer. To think that God desires to inhabit the heart of man, should humble your heart and lead you to Him through Christ.

 

   If you’re not saved and born again through Christ, repent of your sins and by faith believe on the Lord Jesus in your heart and you will receive forgiveness of sins and become a new born again creature in Christ. You will have eternal life and conquer your death, both physical death and eternal death in the lake of fire – “And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life” – (I Jn.5:11,12). Belong to God’s eternal temple. Be saved from your sins and hell through His beloved Son. Do not spurn the marvelous grace of God through His Son on the cross. If you become part of God’s spiritual temple here on earth you will one day be able to walk through God’s temple in heaven.

 

Pastor Mike Storti

5000 N. LaCholla- Lot 76

Tucson, AZ  85705

Email: BibleWatchman@aol.com

Website: BibleWatchman.com

Would love to hear from you!