صور الصفحة
النشر الإلكتروني

The second and third Temples' were not endowed with that glory, which had been possessed by the first; as they were deficient in those five material things which constituted its greatest sanctity: yet all these were abundantly supplied, when "the desire of all "nations," the Lord whom they sought, came to it, and Jesus Christ, the true Shechinah of the divine Majesty, honoured it with his presence; and in this respect, the glory of the latter, far exceeded that of the former House. This Temple, as was just mentioned, was


BE FULFILLED.—Mark, xiii, 30.-Matt. xxiv. 34. And that it did not, is evident, from the circumstance of St. John's outliving the Destruction; who was one of the party present to whom these words were addressed.

Certe multi eorum qui tum vivebant imo qui at virilem ætatem jam pervenerunt potuerunt non excidium tantum Hierosolymorum, sed et multi ei excidio posteriora conspicere quod vel unius Johannis exemplo manifestum est.-Grotius in Matt. xxiv.

(1) First, Solomon's-Second, Zerubbabel's-Third, Herod's.

The Jews, however, only acknowledge two-Solomon's and Zerubbabel's -considering that of Herod merely a renovation of the latter. Solomon's Temple continued 410 years before it was destroyed by the Babylonians, Zerubbabel's 420 before its destruction by the Romans.

(2) The Ark of the Covenant with the Mercy Seat-the Holy Fire-the Urim and Thummim-the Holy Anointing Oil-the Shechinah or Holy Spirit.

(3) When the Jewish people, after their return from the Babylonish Captivity, laid the foundation of the New House, " Many of the Priests, "the Levites, and the Chiefs of the Fathers who were ancient men, wept with "a loud voice,” (Ezra, iii. 12.) for there was a very considerable difference and disparity between this and the former one, as appears from the following passages of the Prophet Haggai:-" Who is left among you that saw this House in its first glory? and how do you see it now? Is it not in your eyes, in comparison of it, as nothing? Yet now be strong, O Zerub"babel! saith the Lord-I will shake all nations, and the Desire of all "Nations shall come, and I will fill this House with glory, saith the Lord of Hosts. The glory of this latter House shall be greater than that of the former, saith the Lord of Hosts."—(ii. 3, 4, 7, 9.) The same appears from


re-built by Herod, with a view not only of conciliating the affections of the Jews, but also to erect a monu ment of lasting honour to his name: and from building afterwards a palace on Mount Zion, it appears proba ble, that his ambition led him to aspire, in some measure, to the glory and popularity of Solomon; by imi tating him in erecting the same species of magnificent


The Temple was begun by him, just forty-six years before the first Passover of Christ's personal ministry.' There were not less than 163,300 workmen employed in building it; its height was eighty-two yards, and that of the courts around it, forty-one: the fronts on the east and south sides, were sustained by ramparts of square stone of vast bulk; that on the south was built up


the promise God gave them by the Prophet Malachi, in order to comfort them on this occasion; that he would exalt the glory of the latter, above that of the former House, by the presence of the Messiah: "Behold, I will send "my Messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me, and the Lord whom "ye seek, shall suddenly come to his Temple; even the Messenger of the "Covenant whom ye delight in; behold! He shall come, saith the Lord of "Hosts." (iii. 1.)

(1)Forty and six years was this Temple in building.-John ii. 20.-Not the Temple alone, but all the cloisters and inclosures surrounding it. The Temple itself occupied the Priests a year and six months in building. (Antiq. 15. xi. 6.) Josephus informs us, that Herod began the Temple in the 18th year of his reign (Antiq. 15, xiv. 2), and that he died in the 37th, after he was declared KING by the Romans (Antiq. 17, viii. 1.) From his beginning

to build to the time of his death was therefore nineteen years: and from his death to the 30th year of Christ, when he entered into his public ministry, leaves twenty-seven, which added to the former nineteen, makes forty-six years exactly. In another place Josephus tells us (Bell. Jud. 1: xxxiii. 8.) that Herod began the Temple in the 15th year of his reign, aud that he reigned thirty-four years from the time of his conquest over Antigonus: so that the 15th year of his thirty-four years reign, from Antigonus, corresponds with the 18th year of his thirty-seven years reign, from the time of his being declared King by the Romans.

Vide Bp. Kidder's Demonstration of the Messiah, Part ii. p. 125.



[ocr errors]

from the valley below, to an altitude of three hundred cubits; this, with the height of the edifice, amounted to four hundred, which in addition to sixty for the height of the loftiest Tower, amounts altogether to four hundred and sixty cubits, or eight hundred and five feet," The height was so great," says Josephus, "that if any one looked down from the top of the "cloister into the valley beneath, he would become


giddy; at the same time, it would be impossible for "the eyed to reach to such an immense depth: and "this was the most prodigious work that ever man “heard of. The whole was built of white marble, " and so exquisitely joined, that it appeared one uniform rock. All the materials of this stupendous "fabrics were finished and adapted to their several ends, before they were brought to Jerusalem; the stones wrought in the quarries, and the cedars in "Lebanon; so that there was no noise heard in the "rearing of it."* "It is also reported," continues

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


(1) The Temple was four furlongs in circuit, or a square of one furlong on each side. In its front were large and lofty galleries supported by rows of massy pillars. It was 100 cubits in height. The pillars were 162 in number, each 27 feet high, and in thickness as much as three men could embrace. The stones made use of for this building were 25 cubits long, 8 in height, and 12 in width. Their great dimensions and solidity make the prophecy of our Saviour the more extraordinary. Vide Mark xiii, 1. Calmet, vol. iii. p. 16.

12 According to the Hebrew maxim, the cubit by which the Temple buildings were measured, was 6 hands breadth; this, says Lightfoot, is just 18 inches, or half a yard; and upon this computation the area of the Temple was that of 250 yards square.

(2) Antiq. 15, xi. 3 and 5.

(3) See the description of Solomon's Temple, Antiq. 8, iii. 2, which in fact was the model by which this of Herod's was built.

(4) Compare Jos. Antiq. 15, xi. 14, and Bell. Jud. 5, v. 6 and 6, xii. 1.. "And the house when it was in building, was built of stone made ready before


the Historian, "that during the time the Temple was "building, it did not rain by day, but the showers fell "by night, so that the work was not impeded." It was built upon an area of nearly 800 feet square, divided into different courts; the whole surrounded by clois ters and buildings appropriated to the purposes of worship, and the service of the Priests. The Temple itself was situated in the centre, and was divided into three parts; the Porch, the Sanctuary, and the Holy of Holies. In the Porch, were suspended the presents of neighbouring kingdoms, and royal gifts. The Sanctuary contained the Altar of Incense, the golden Candlestick, the Shew-bread, and other sacred deposits. The Holy of Holies, looked upon as the restdence of the Deity, was entered by none but the High Priest; and he only once a year, on the great days of expiation. Before the Babylonish captivity it had contained

it was brought thither; so that there was neither hammer, nor axe, nor any tool of iron heard in the house while it was in building." 1 Kings vi. 7. The reason for this is perhaps best explained by Exod. xx. 25. "And if thou wilt make me an altar of stone, thou shalt not build it of hewn stone: for if thou lift up thy tool upon it (the Temple), thou hast polluted it.”

(1) Antiq. 15, xi. 7. Where he adds also, that this testimony was delivered down to his time, by father to son in succession.

(2) The external glory of this latter Temple, consisted not only in the opulence and magnificence of the building, but in the rich gifts (avanuata) with which it was adorned, and which excited the admiration of those that beheld them. (Luke xxi. 5.) The hanging up of these consecrated gifts was common in most of the ancient Temples; as we find it particularly was in the Temple of Jerusalem; where among the rest, was a golden table given by Pompey, and several golden vines of exquisite workmanship, and of an immense size; with clusters, says Josephus (avdfouexels) as tall as a

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

(3) But into the second went the High Priest alone once (one day) every year. Heb. ix. 7. See also Exod. xxx, 10, and Levit. xvi. 2, 15, 34.

contained the Ark of the Covenant; but in the second Temple it was altogether empty.

The splendour and magnificence of the whole were as great as human means could devise or achieve; and the immense buildings just mentioned, which were added by Herod, were as rich and beautiful as they were astonishing. Its external appearance was most striking, and nothing seemed wanting to surprise the eye, or elevate the mind. "Its front," says Josephus, "was entirely covered with sheets of gold; which, at "the first rising of the sun, reflected so great a lustre, "that it compelled those who looked at it, to turn away "their eyes, as they would from the sun itself. It appeared to strangers at a distance, like a mountain "covered with snow; for excepting where it was gilt, "it was of one continued and unrivalled whiteness." Of its stones some were forty-five cubits in length, five in height, and six in breadth, and even in greater proportions.

[ocr errors]

Such was the sanctity and magnificence of this Temple of Jerusalem; a building reared with so much labour,

(1) Bell. Jud. 5. v. 6:

The silver is mine and the gold is mine, saith the Lord of Hosts.
Haggai, ii. 8.
Tacit. Hist. v. 1.

Immensæ opulentiæ Templum.

(2) Bell. Jud, 5. v. 6.

And as some spake of the Temple, one of his disciples said unto him, Master, see what manner of stones and what buildings are here? Mark, xiii. 1.

Edificatum autem est templum ex lapidibus candidis et firmis; et singulorum magnitudo erat in longum, ad cubitos circiter quinque et viginti, in altitudinem octo, in latitudinem vero circiter duodecim. Antiq. 15, xi. 3.

Maundrel mentions having seen in a wall encompassing the Temple of Balbec, one stone of 21 yards; and two others each 20 yards long, 4 deep, and as many broad. Travels, p. 138, Ed. 1749.

« السابقةمتابعة »