What is the biblical importance of Mount Moriah?
Mount Moriah is located in the old part of Jerusalem and is considered one of the most important pieces of property on the planet. It is considered sacred to Jews, Christians, and Muslims. Mount Moriah is the location of the Jewish temple mount as well as the Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa mosque.
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The earliest mention of Mount Moriah in the Bible is found in Genesis 22. In it, Abraham is told to take his son Isaac to the top of this location to offer as a burnt sacrifice to the Lord. Once Abraham acted in faith to show he was willing to offer his only son to the Lord, God stopped Abraham and provided a ram instead as an offering. "Abraham called the name of that place, 'The LORD will provide'; as it is said to this day, 'On the mount of the LORD it shall be provided'" (Genesis 22:14).
Later in Israel's history, King David selected this location as a site to build a temple for the Lord (2 Samuel 24:18). He did not build the temple, but helped make preparations for his son Solomon to do so. This temple would serve as the central place of Jewish worship for approximately 400 years until its destruction by the Babylonians under King Nebuchadnezzar in 587-586 BC.
After a 70-year exile, the Jewish people began to return and rebuilt the temple on the same location. Some of this account is recorded in Ezra and Nehemiah. During the time of King Herod, additional expansion was made to the temple area. This was the temple Jesus would have experienced during His earthly ministry. The early church in Jerusalem also noted this temple, often using the temple courts as an area for Christian worship before persecution by the Jews in Jerusalem.
In 70 AD, the Roman army destroyed the temple once again, leaving only the Western Wall, the location often shown today on television where devout Jews offer prayers.
The Bible also indicates a future Jewish temple will one day be rebuilt (Daniel 9:27). While it may seem difficult to see how this could take place today, the Bible is clear it will take place. In addition to the temple mentioned in Daniel and Revelation, the Jewish prophet Ezekiel describes a temple that will exist in the future (chapters 40—48). Some see this as a temple that will exist in the future millennial kingdom (Revelation 20:1-6).
Regardless, the location of Mount Moriah is clearly one of important religious significance, past, present, and future. Those who study Scripture can find much attention given to this location due to events related to Abraham, David, temple worship, and even future prophecy.
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