JERUSALEM – Nightfall on Monday, December 10th marks the end of the Jewish celebration of Hanukkah. Also known as the Festival of Lights, Hanukkah commemorates the rededication of the Second Temple in Jerusalem.
This year the last day of Hanukkah will be marked by the consecration of a stone altar that has been prepared for use in the Third Temple. There has been much debate about when and where the Third Temple will be constructed. Israelis have been working behind the scenes for years preparing for that occasion. Numerous websites have documented the alleged progress made toward restoring the Temple furniture and utensils.
In early November, the emergent reorganization of the Sanhedrin issued an invitation to 70 different nations, inviting representatives of each to attend the consecration of the replica of the altar upon which daily sacrifices were made on behalf of the Jewish people.
The occasion marks some of the first widely-public evidence that the Temple project is well underway.
Although not a component of the state of Israel, the Sanhedrin was, in effect, the high court of the Jewish nation before the diaspora and for about 200 years afterward. It consists of 70 “judges” and the high priest. The last binding decision of the Sanhedrin was issued in 358 A.D. with their adoption of the Hebrew calendar. For all practical purposes, the group was dissolved following continued persecution by the Roman Empire.
The consecration will include a full-dress reenactment of the daily offering by the Kohanim, descendants of Aaron – the only persons permitted by God to do so.
With only a few days to go, a couple of issues remain unclear.
Where will the consecration take place? No official announcement has yet been made but, because the stones comprising the five-foot-tall, nine-foot square altar are made from a light-weight (portable) aerated concrete. Security will be paramount in Jerusalem as Muslim residents will not tolerate such a ceremony within the view of the Al Aqsa mosque which dominates the alleged Temple Mount.
Will the Sanhedrin offer an animal sacrifice? Plans definitely include grain offerings and a wine libation. Whether the Sanhedrin will actually sacrifice a lamb or merely proffer a demonstration remains to be seen. However, given the intent of the group to actually get the Third Temple built, a sacrificial lamb would not be out of the question.
The Sanhedrin has obtained all of the required permits from all government agencies in charge of slaughtering animals, with the exception of the municipality of Jerusalem. Failing to obtain that permission, it is believed that the group will roast meat obtained from a bona fide processing plant on the altar.
How the event unfolds may not be nearly as important as the fact that it will be held at all. The event is one of both historic and prophetic proportions.
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- WND, 7 Days until dedication of 3rd Temple Altar
- First Fruits of Zion, The UN, 70 Nations, and Third Temple Altar Dedication
- Breaking Israel News, Sanhedrin Invites 70 Nations of Hanukkah Dedication of Altar for the Third Temple
- Breaking Israel News, Sanhedrin Urges Candidates for Jerusalem Mayor to Prepare for the Third Temple
- Got Questions, What was the Sanhedrin?
- Ariely, Wikimedia Commons (CC BY 3.0)