Q. I have read that the sanctuary of the old Jewish temple has been found in excavation work under the dome of the rock, and I had the thought – could this be where the beast will declare himself to be God. Would there be need for a new Jewish temple to be built?
A. There is a minority view, championed by Tuvia Sagiv a prominent Israeli architect, that Herod’s Temple actually stood much lower than originally thought. He came to this conclusion by virtually reconstructing the aqueduct that brought water to the altar area in the Court of the Priests.
Beginning with existing remnants of the ancient aqueduct and “filling in” the missing sections he shows that the water would have arrived at the Temple some 30 feet below the floor level of the current Temple Mount. If this is true, then what most experts believe to be giant water cisterns beneath the Temple Mount could actually be the remnants of the ancient sanctuary. This view conflicts with the Lord’s prophecy that not one stone of the Temple would be left standing on another (Luke 19:41-44), but if it turns out that he’s right, then theoretically the Temple might only need refurbishment, not a complete rebuild, and could be accessed from the Western Wall, below and to the South of the Dome of the Rock.