The Jews are also looking for the Messiah, and the Messiah they are looking for is actually the Antichrist.
The Jews are not looking for a Messiah who will save them from sin. They have no sacrifices, and they are content with that, thinking that they don’t need a blood atonement. They celebrate the Passover and the Day of Atonement without a lamb and without the shedding of blood.
We asked a Reformed Jewish rabbi in Jerusalem, “How do you purge your sins?” and he replied, “We ask God for forgiveness through prayer and through actions.” When queried about Leviticus 17:11--“it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul”--the rabbi said that to interpret that to mean that man needs a literal blood sacrifice is a false interpretation.
A representative of the Temple Institute told us the same thing:
“God knows that we don’t have the sacrifices. That is why He has given us a different way of atonement, and that’s by prayers. We have prayers that great rabbis wrote just after the destructions, and we say these prayers and that’s as if we are sacrificing.”
The Jews stumbled at the Suffering Messiah 2,000 years ago. They were looking for a Messiah to save them from Rome, not a Messiah who would die for their sins. They wanted a king, not a Saviour.
Since the destruction of the Second Temple in 70 AD, the Jews have been looking for a Messiah that will rebuild the temple. In Jewish tradition that has developed since then, the rebuilding of the temple is associated with the coming of the Messiah. According to Maimonides (also called Rambam), the highest rabbinical authority, any Jew that starts rebuilding the Temple is a potential Messiah.
Shimon ben Kosiba was considered a Messiah in the second century when he led a revolt to recapture Jerusalem and rebuild the Temple. He was named Bar Kokhba (“Son of the Star”) based on the Messianic prophecy of Numbers 24:17, and a coin was struck by the Jews that depicted the temple with the ark of the covenant inside and the Messianic star on the roof.
A representative of the Temple Institute told us in 2010 that they are looking for a temple builder:
“We are waiting for a Messiah. In Jewish tradition, we believe that in every generation there is someone who can be the Messiah. The question is who will he be. The answer is only someone who does specific things can be called the Messiah. The one who brings Israel back to Israel. The one who builds the temple again.”
By this tradition, it is simple to see how the Antichrist will be looked upon as the Messiah. He will come as a peacemaker, and by his satanic power he will make a way for the Jewish temple to be rebuilt in spite of Muslim animosity.
The Jews are looking for a Messiah that will solve their problems and bring peace when things look dark. In a video interview in Jerusalem in 2010 a Reformed Jewish rabbi told us that the Messiah will come when things look really dark and will establish peace. He said:
“Jerusalem is to be whole, and when the Messiah comes the temple will be returned to us. But that can’t happen until there is eternal peace. Ultimately we have to go deeper into destruction before we come out into the light and until God redeems not only the Jewish people but also the rest of the world. Peace has to come, but peace can only come when things get really dark.”
But the Jewish prophets said there is no peace to the wicked (Isa. 57:21). There can be no peace for Israel until she is in right relationship with God, until she repents of her sin and is forgiven and converted. Until then, any so-called peace will turn out to be a false peace, which is exactly what the Antichrist will bring.
“For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape” (1 Thessalonians 5:3).
Thus, the Jews are not looking for a Saviour from sin; they are looking for a Messiah that will bring peace, that will solve their problems, that will help them to rebuild the Temple, that will not rebuke them as sinners but will help them follow their “positive inclinations.”
Though they don’t know it, they are actually looking for the Antichrist, and the Bible says they will accept him when he comes.
The world is crying out for peace today, and the nations will believe the Antichrist’s lies and lying wonders. The nations will rejoice, thinking that the world’s greatest problems have been solved and the long-awaited “Age of Aquarius” has arrived, but the global peace party will be short-lived and the Antichrist will soon show his true colors, setting himself up as God in Israel’s temple and requiring worship at the point of death.
The Antichrist will make a way for the Jewish Third Temple to be built on the Temple Mount, something that seems impossible today.
Bible prophecy associates the Antichrist with the building of the Third Temple.
“Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, 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 Thessalonians 2:3-4).
(The First Temple was built by Solomon, and the Second Temple was built after the Jews returned from the Babylonian captivity and was extended and glorified by King Herod, so that it was called Herod’s Temple.)
Great preparations are being made in Israel for the building of the Third Temple. The Temple Institute, founded in 1986, has prepared all of the articles, including a menorah (candlestick) fashioned from 95 pounds of gold (valued at $2 million) and the high priest’s golden crown costing $30,000. When I visited Jerusalem in 2010 and 2013, the menorah was on display on the Western Wall Plaza across from the Temple Mount. In December 2014, the Temple Institute also completed an altar of sacrifice intended for the Third Temple.
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