Jesus’ Life: Chapter 14 – The Olivet Discourse
The original Temple in Jerusalem was built by Solomon, many hundreds of years before Jesus Christ. Although destroyed in 587BC, it was rebuilt between 536-515BC and then remodelled by Herod the Great who lived from 37-4BC. (It was Herod the Great who also killed all newborn males in an attempt to find and destroy the baby, Jesus.)
The Temple was a beautiful building with surrounding courts, porches and other ornate structures. The stonework was immaculate with sumptuous decorations throughout.
Once, as Jesus left the Temple, his disciples stopped to draw his attention to its unique beauty saying, “Teacher, look at these tremendous stones and buildings!” Jesus replied, “Do you see all these things? I tell you the truth, not one stone will be left on another. All will be torn down!”
Did Jesus’ prophecy come true?
Yes. There was a long history of Jewish rebellion against their Roman rulers and in the years leading up to 70AD, a serious uprising occurred which led to a siege of the city by the Romans. With an army of around 30,000 troops, they are said to have slaughtered as many as 600,000 people including, numerous Passover pilgrims trapped in the city. In addition, the Romans torched the city, completely destroyed the Temple and removed all traces of a Jewish nation.
It is said that the fires burned for over a month melting the ornate gold and other Temple metals into the stone cracks and crevasses. During the pillaging that followed, the stones were broken up to recover the precious metals.
Jesus’ prophecy was fulfilled, 40yrs after his death, “Not one stone will be left on another. All will be torn down!” (Matthew 24:1-2, Mark 13:1-2, Luke 21:5-6)
Why so many horrendous conflicts between world communities, even today? What is achieved? Are we unable to tolerate our neighbours?
Lord Jesus, I pray for peace among all nations involved in conflict throughout the world. Grant to them the wisdom to see each other as their own brothers and sisters.
Prayer: Peace (St Francis of Assisi)
Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace;
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is error, truth;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
And where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master,
Grant that I may not so much seek
To be consoled as to console;
To be understood as to understand;
To be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.