Temple Institute calls for funding ‘to rebuild the Holy Temple in our Time’

Area called the Temple Mount (Andrew Shiva)


In its newsletter today, the Temple Institute had the following:

Help To Build The Holy Temple In Our Time: Donate Generously To Help The Sacred Work Of The Temple Institute! Every contribution helps to rebuild the Holy Temple in our Time!

Certain Jews, Protestants, and even some in certain COGs believe that a massive Jewish temple needs to be rebuilt in Jerusalem in this age (prior to the return of the Messiah) before certain prophesies can be fulfilled.

Some believe that US President Donald Trump is a modern day ‘Cyrus the Great’ who has taken steps to allow for this (see BIN: ‘Trump’s Peace Deal is Akin to Decree of King Cyrus Paving Path For Third Temple’ says Israeli Politician).

As far as Jerusalem, Cyrus and Donald Trump go, we also have a video:


On December 6, 2017, US President Donald Trump fulfilled a campaign promise related to the recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. This brought anger, protests, and rockets from some Palestinians. It also brought condemnation from European allies–it has been claimed to be disruptive and even catastrophic. The Palestinian President (Mahmoud Abbas) said that this pronouncement eliminated the USA as being a fair mediator for a peace deal. Others have claimed that Donald Trump is an end time Cyrus and his pronouncement will lead to a Third Temple in Jerusalem. Is there ever going to be a peace deal? If so, will Europeans be part of it? Is Donald Trump a ‘Cyrus.’ Do the Jews require a Third Temple for sacrifices? Dr. Thiel answers those questions and more.

Here is a link to our video: Jerusalem, Donald Trump, and Prophecy.

Of course, the idea of the third Jewish temple, preceded the presidency of Donald Trump. Notice the following, over two decade ago, from popular Protestant writers the late Dr. T. LaHaye & J. Jenkins (known for their promoting of the “rapture” position, please see Is There A Secret Rapture for the Church? When and Where is the Church Protected?) go so far as to declare:

All prophecy teachers who interpret the Scriptures literally agree that a Jewish temple in Israel will be rebuilt…

That there will be a third temple is predicted by the prophet Daniel, the apostles Paul and John, and none other than Jesus Himself.  They all taught that Israel’s third temple will be rebuilt either before the Tribulation begins or soon thereafter, for it is seen in complete operation by the middle of the Tribulation.  Obviously, since Israel does not now have a temple, a third temple must be rebuilt for such an event to occur.

…the Antichrist desolates it near the middle of the Tribulation. (Are We Living in the End Times?  Tyndale House, Wheaton (IL), 1999, pp.122, 126).

But is that strictly true?  Did Daniel, Paul, John, and Jesus all specifically predict a third Jewish temple before Jesus returns?  Did any of them?

For those who claim Christianity, this misunderstanding is largely based on the misinterpretation of words in the New Testament.

First, it needs to be brought out that the New Testament itself basically uses two Greek terms for temple: they are hieron (ίερόν) and naos (ναος or ναον).  While the Greek term hieron always seems to refer to a physical temple in the New Testament (usually a Jewish one, but sometimes a pagan one, e.g. Acts 19:27), the term naos does not always do so.

Perhaps because hieron is used more frequently (71 times) in the New Testament (and is the term most often translated into English as temple), some seem to have confused it with the naos term for temple.

Naos is used 47 times in the New Testament, and while it is clearly referring to a physical temple approximately 19 times (mainly in the Gospels and Acts), it is clearly not referring to a physical temple on earth in many of the remaining verses.

Jesus was the first in the New Testament to use naos to refer to something OTHER than a Jewish temple in scripture:

19 Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.

20 Then said the Jews, Forty and six years was this temple in building, and wilt thou rear it up in three days?

21 But he spake of the temple of his body. (John 2:19-21, KJV throughout)

So, while the Jews were thinking that naos was a referring to a physical Jewish temple in verse 20, the scripture is clear that in verses 19 and 21 that Jesus was referring to naos to mean something else.

While the children of Israel clearly were the people of God in the Hebrew scriptures (e.g. Exodus 3:10) and built “the temple of God” (2 Chronicles 23:9) in Old Testament times, has there not been a change since Jesus came (Hebrews 7:12)?

The Hebrew scriptures state that the Jews were God’s holy people (Deuteronomy 7:6), yet the New Testament shows that God’s holy people are now Christians:

13 Jesus Christ…15 He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, 16 because it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy.” (1 Peter 1:13, 15-16)

9 But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, (1 Peter 2:9)

Could Christians, God’s holy people (Daniel 12:7), represent God’s holy temple in the end-times?

Does the New Testament connect Christians (Jews or Gentiles) or non-believing Jews with the temple of God?

To determine that, let’s look at those passages in the New Testament that refer to a naos “temple of God” on the earth after Jesus’ resurrection.

The Apostle Paul told the Christians in Corinth:

16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?

17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are. (1 Corinthians 3:16-17)

19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? (1 Corinthians 6:19)

16 And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. (2 Corinthians 6:16)

Notice that the Apostle Paul supports the idea that the naos temple of God now has to do with Christians, not necessarily the Jewish peoples (except those who are Christians and have the Holy Spirit). Additionally, his wording “know ye not” indicates that this is something that they already should have known.

Despite scriptures like 1 Corinthians 3:17, some today believe that God would consider a Jewish Temple, to be built in defiance of the sacrifice of Jesus, to be holy. It is God’s people who are the Holy Temple in the church era, not a Jewish building.

Notice further that the Apostle Paul told the Christians in Ephesus about being God’s building:

19 Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God;

20 And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone;

21 In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord:

22 In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit. (Ephesians 2:19-22)

Thus, Paul’s writings regarding the naos temple have to do with Christian people and not a Jewish building.

And while I do believe that the Bible should normally be interpreted literally, it is clear that the Apostle Paul repeatedly used the term naos metaphorically to refer to true Christians.

Further consider what the deacon and martyr Stephen taught:

44 “Our fathers had the tabernacle of witness in the wilderness, as He appointed, instructing Moses to make it according to the pattern that he had seen, 45 which our fathers, having received it in turn, also brought with Joshua into the land possessed by the Gentiles, whom God drove out before the face of our fathers until the days of David, 46 who found favor before God and asked to find a dwelling for the God of Jacob. 47 But Solomon built Him a house.

48 “However, the Most High does not dwell in temples made with hands, as the prophet says:

49 ‘Heaven is My throne,
And earth is My footstool.
What house will you build for Me? says the Lord,
Or what is the place of My rest?
50 Has My hand not made all these things?’ (Acts 7:44-50)

The temple of God in the New Testament are the Christians with God’s Holy Spirit (the term temples above was not in the Greek manuscripts in the NA27, however a version of naos, is in the manuscripts known as the Textus Receptus). Christians are to live their lives with the knowledge that God dwells in them (see also Living as a Christian: How and Why?).

While He was on the earth, Jesus taught He was greater than the physical, hieron, Jewish temple:

6 Yet I say to you that in this place there is One greater than the temple. (Matthew 12:6)

And while the following does not use the either of the Greek terms for temple, it seems consistent with the view that the current temple, in God’s eyes, is not a physical one as the hieron temple had a sanctuary and tabernacle (1 Kings 8:4-8):

1 Now this is the main point of the things we are saying: We have such a High Priest, who is seated at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens, 2 a Minister of the sanctuary and of the true tabernacle which the Lord erected, and not man. (Hebrews 8:1-2)

Years ago when I had a just taken a class on koine Greek, I attempted (with a lot of book assistance) to translate from the Greek, a second century writing from Church of God Bishop/Pastor Melito of Sardis. It is named Melito On Prophecy and is called the Papyrus Oxyrhynchus I. 5 (the Greek used was as shown in Paulsen H. New Test. Stud. 25, 1979, pp. 443-453). The document is a fragment, but my understanding of it suggests that Melito also taught that Christians were God’s temple.

Getting back to scripture, here is more from the Apostle Peter:

4 Coming to Him as to a living stone, rejected indeed by men, but chosen by God and precious, 5 you also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 6 Therefore it is also contained in the Scripture,

“Behold, I lay in Zion
A chief cornerstone, elect, precious,
And he who believes on Him will by no means be put to shame.” (1 Peter 2:4-6)

According the the New Testament, in the Christian era, Christians are the temple of God.

Notice something from the old Radio Church of God:

The Pillars in God’s Temple

Just as Daniel wrote (Daniel 12:4), knowledge has been increased in this time of the end. Part of the knowledge which God has increased concerns the many prophecies of the Bible.
God has promised that the overcomer of the Philadelphia era of God’s Church will become a “pillar” in the temple of God (Rev. 3:12).

This is speaking symbolically of a position of authority in the headquarters of the world, which will be at a new Temple to be built in Jerusalem. Do you know where the pillars are located in God’s temple? Most people know that there are two large pillars that stand in front of the temple, but are they the physical types of the offices to which Christ refers?

The saints of this era who do overcome and endure to the end will be right at this temple of God. They will be here for the one thousand year period, and even on through the following one hundred year period (Is. 65:17-25). If you are one of God’s faithful saints in this age, you will be assigned at the temple for this whole period. Here is an opportunity for you to have described, right now from your own Bible the description of that wonderful place, God’s Temple in prophecy. …

Ezekiel saw the World Tomorrow

The prophet Ezekiel was projected forward in time through many centuries to the soon-coming world tomorrow (Ezekiel, chapters 40 to 48). In this particular vision he even saw God’s temple from which Christ will rule the whole earth! He saw the coming King of Kings and Lord of Lords in His new kingdom, the Kingdom of God. He saw the glory of Christ which will then fill the whole earth. Ezekiel was inspired of God to write of that world tomorrow. It was recorded and handed down to us today so that we might understand the details of the marvelous temple of God in prophecy. (Neff L. God’s Temple in Prophecy, Chapter I, March 1961)

Notice also the following:

1 Then I looked, and behold, a Lamb standing on Mount Zion, and with Him one hundred and forty-four thousand, having His Father’s name written on their foreheads. (Revelation 14:1)

Christians are the Temple of God in the New Testament.

Contrary to the assertions/implications of Dr. LaHaye & J. Jenkins, there is no verse in the New Testament by Jesus that is referring to a Jewish hieron temple being rebuilt related to the Tribulation (nor anything written by Paul nor Daniel for that matter).

While it is difficult to “prove a negative” I did a Greek word search of hieron in the New Testament and could find no verse that backed up the assertions of Dr. LaHaye & J. Jenkins in this area that a third Jewish temple is required before various end-time prophecies can be fulfilled.

However, there is another phrase that can be used to refer to the Jerusalem temple area and that is the Greek expression topos hagios (τόπου άγίου in Acts or τόπω άγίω in Matthew) which tends to be translated as “holy place” or sometimes “sanctuary.” The expression topos literally means region or place (Liddell H.G, Scott R.  Greek-English Lexicon, Oxford, 1996, p. 1806) and is most often used in the New Testament to mean a location as opposed to a structure.

Versions of the phrase topos hagios were used by non-Christian Jews for the temple (Acts 6:13; Acts 21:28). Yet, topos hagios can also be understood to simply be the area where the old temple of God was, as opposed to the temple building itself.  For example, notice the following:

28…and further brought Greeks also into the temple, and hath polluted this holy place. (Acts 21:28b)

The term temple above is translated from hieron, while the term holy place is from the Greek expression topos hagios—thus an apparent distinction is made between the building (hieron) and the location (topos hagios).

Also notice the following which uses the Greek terms topos and hagios and translates them as “place” and “holy” below:

33 Then said the Lord to him, Put off thy shoes from thy feet: for the place where thou standest is holy ground. (Acts 7:33)

Thus, the New Testament shows that the terms topos and hagios can refer to a holy location as opposed to being restricted to a structure.

It is in that context or perhaps context of the city of Jerusalem itself (as it is the “Holy City”, cf. Matthew 4:5; Revelation 21:2) or Zion which may be what Jesus was intending to convey when He used a version of topos hagios in Matthew 24:15 (which was the only scripture in Dr. LaHaye & J. Jenkins’ previously cited book, p. 122, concerning Jesus and the temple).

Let me also add that the old Church of God (Advent), the group that changed its name to Church of God (Seventh-Day) in the 20th century, published the following:

What is the ‘holy place’? I understand it to be the Church , which is called the temple. Turn to 1st Cor. 3:16, 17. (Watkins J. The Midnight Cry. Hope of Israel, October 28, 1863)

Notice what Jesus stated:

15 When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:) (Matthew 24:15)

In that verse, Jesus says that we should look at Daniel (which is covered later in this paper). Jesus also taught that the one who reads this passage needs understand something—Jesus’ comment itself suggests that the what may be the most apparent idea that “a physical Jewish temple may be required” may not be correct.

Carefully notice that no temple of any kind is specifically mentioned in this passage. Bible literalists should realize that perhaps a future Jewish physical temple is not being referred to by Jesus here, but that Jesus is referring to either the area the temple was originally built at or to something else in the city of Jerusalem.

Thus, it seems improper to insist that Jesus is specifically teaching that a third Jewish temple will be rebuilt as there is no scripture in the entire New Testament that shows that He specifically taught that.

In their book Are We Living in the End Times?, Dr. LaHaye & J. Jenkins cited Daniel 9:27 and Daniel 11:31 presumably as proof that Jesus is somehow predicting the building of a third Jewish temple.

Let us quote both of those passages below, plus one other:

27 And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate. (Daniel 9:27)

31 And arms shall stand on his part, and they shall pollute the sanctuary of strength, and shall take away the daily sacrifice, and they shall place the abomination that maketh desolate. (Daniel 11:31)

11 And from the time that the daily sacrifice is taken away, and the abomination of desolation is set up, there shall be one thousand two hundred and ninety days. (Daniel 12:11)

Understand that while those scriptures are referring to sacrifices, none of those passages says anything about a temple being built or involved. And while that may be an obvious assumption, it is simply not a biblically required conclusion. As far as the stopping of animal sacrifices goes, there is information on this in the article The Red Heifer, Jewish Beliefs, and the End of the World.

The Hebrew text of Daniel 11:31 uses the phrase hammiqdash hamma’oz literally “the holy place stronghold,” “the sanctuary stronghold” or “the temple stronghold” which supports the idea that it can be referring to a specific place or area (such as an area where an altar may be placed) as opposed to the idea of requiring a temple to be rebuilt in Jerusalem. (More on Daniel 11 can be found in the article Who is the King of the North?)

The Hebrew word (Strong’s 1004) frequently translated as temple in the Old Testament, habayit, is used three times in the Book of Daniel. They are all part of the first chapter, where they are translated as a religious house:

2 And the Lord gave Jehoiakim king of Judah into his hand, with some of the articles of the house of God, which he carried into the land of Shinar to the house of his god; and he brought the articles into the treasure house of his god. (Daniel 1:2)

The other Hebrew word (Strong’s 1965) frequently translated as temple in the Old Testament, heeyk­laa°, is used twice in the fifth chapter of the Book of Daniel:

2 While he tasted the wine, Belshazzar gave the command to bring the gold and silver vessels which his father Nebuchadnezzar had taken from the temple which had been in Jerusalem, that the king and his lords, his wives, and his concubines might drink from them. 3 Then they brought the gold vessels that had been taken from the temple of the house of God which had been in Jerusalem; and the king and his lords, his wives, and his concubines drank from them. (Daniel 5:2-3)

Thus, we see that Daniel did not specify in his writings that a third Jewish temple must be built.

Perhaps it should be mentioned here that I do agree with Dr. LaHaye & J. Jenkins (cf. pp. 107,194) that Great Tribulation (cf. Matthew 24;15-21) begins in the middle of the week in Daniel 9:27 when the sacrifices are stopped (and 3 ½ years are left). See also The ‘Peace Deal’ of Daniel 9:27.

But I disagree that this means that a Jewish temple must be built.

Jesus warned:

15 “Therefore when you see the ‘abomination of desolation,’ spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place” (whoever reads, let him understand), 16 “then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. (Matthew 24:15-16)

But where is that?

It could be the first church building in Jerusalem (see Church of God on Jerusalem’s Western Hill). Or maybe it could be something else.

Protestant Irvin Baxter teaches that this is when the Beast of the Sea (who he mislabels as the final Antichrist) “stands on the Temple Mount” (Baxter I. “This Generation Shall Not Pass,” episode 258. End of the Age, 2014. End-Time Ministries)

Yet, because the claimed Temple Mount in Jerusalem is possibly not considered holy in God’s sight, those who expect to see the “abomination who makes desolate” (Daniel 9:27) there may not understand if the Beast of Sea does this somewhere else.

It is possible that this is another place. In several places in the Hebrew scriptures, Mt. Zion is referred to as holy (Psalm 2:6; Isaiah 64:10; Joel 2:1; 3:17; Zechariah 8:3).

Now, here is the view of a temple from Thomas J. Nash, a Catholic apologist, wrote the following published by the Catholic World Report:

Divinely Planned Obsolescence

Why the Temple in Jerusalem will never be rebuilt and how the Sacrifice of the Mass is “the source and summit of evangelization”. …

Jesus said to his disciples: “Take heed, watch and pray; for you do not know when the time will come. 34 It is like a man going on a journey, when he leaves home and puts his servants in charge, each with his work, and commands the doorkeeper to be on the watch. Watch therefore—for you do not know when the master of the house will come, in the evening, or at midnight, or at cockcrow, or in the morning— lest he come suddenly and find you asleep. And what I say to you I say to all: ‘Watch’” (Mk. 13:33-37; Gospel, First Sunday of Advent, Year B).

The Church understands Jesus’ Second Coming will be precisely that: A Second and Final Coming in which Christ will definitively judge the living and the dead at the Last Judgment (CCC 1038-41). This doctrine is sometimes called “amillennialism,” which recognizes that the reign of Christ the King began with his earthly ministry, including the founding of his Catholic Church, and that Jesus continues his reign through his Church until he comes again at the climax of the world. The Church’s teaching stands in stark contrast to the popular, latter-day Protestant view of premillenialism, which holds that Jesus will return to earth and have a literal 1,000-year reign. Included in that proposed reign will be the rebuilding of the Temple in Jerusalem, which was destroyed in A.D. 70, and the accompanying reinstitution therein of Old Covenant sacrifices. …

This premillennial perspective was prominently promoted in Hal Lindsey’s 1970 mega-bestseller The Late Great Planet Earth, as well in the Left Behind books and movies of more recent vintage.

But Lindsey and likeminded Christians, who continue to preach the rebuilding of the Temple, are, along with some well-meaning Jews, mistaken. The great and sad irony is that these Christians undermine the biblically based, New Covenant work of Jesus, who in his one Sacrifice of Calvary fulfilled and thus made obsolete the Old Covenant sacrifices (Heb. 8:6-7, 13), which had to be offered at the Temple in Jerusalem. …

The Letter to the Hebrews makes clear that Jesus definitively ended the need for the repetitive animal sacrifices of Temple worship, when he suffered and died once for all (Heb. 7:27). In doing so, he culminated his one Sacrifice of Calvary in everlasting glory in the heavenly sanctuary, not a mere earthly one, (Hebrews 8:1-3; 9:11-12, 23-24); and he makes that Sacrifice present on earth “as a priest forever, according to the order of Melchizedek,” (Heb. 5:6; see Heb. 5:5-10; 7:23-26;), i.e., under the appearances of bread and wine (see Gen. 14:18-20; Mt. 26:26-29). …

So to think that God would authorize the reinstitution of Temple sacrifices is to misunderstand his salvific work and also, unwittingly, blaspheme Jesus, who rendered void the need for such inferior sacrifices (Heb. 9:11-12, 23-28).

Been there, done that

Many Christians mistakenly believe that the biggest obstacle in rebuilding the Temple is the major international conflict that would result from having to destroy the Islamic Dome of the Rock. While some Jews and Muslim argue that the Dome of the Rock could be spared in rebuilding the sacrificial heart of the Temple, the whole argument is—charitably stated—moot. http://www.catholicworldreport.com/2017/12/03/divinely-planned-obsolescence/

The above is a mix of truth and error. Thomas Nash is correct that God does not need a Jewish Temple for the remission of sins (see also Why is a Jewish Temple in Jerusalem Not Required?).

It is true that Hal Lindsey believes that a Jewish Temple must be rebuilt and that he is a premillenialist. Yet, it is not true that he, and others who believe that the Jews will rebuild the Temple, believe that God requires this for sins. They believe that Jesus paid the penalty for sins by His one sacrifice, hence they do not accept the Roman Catholic view that Jesus needs to be sacrificed daily via the Catholic Mass–which, by the way, was not the original liturgy of even that church (for details, see What was the Liturgy of the Early Church?).

As far as premillenism is concerned, that is NOT originally a Protestant teaching.

Martin Luther did not teach that nor do the Lutherans teach it.

The immediate followers of Martin Luther actually condemned the Anabaptists for not accepting infant baptism and for teaching the millennial reign of Christ as the Lutherans opposed that biblical teaching:

Article IX: Of Baptism… They condemn the Anabaptists, who reject the baptism of children…

Article XVII: Of Christ’s Return to Judgment. Also they teach that at the Consummation of the World Christ will appear for judgment and will raise up all the dead; He will give to the godly and elect eternal life and everlasting joys, but ungodly men and the devils He will condemn to be tormented without end. They condemn the Anabaptists, who think that there will be an end to the punishments of condemned men and devils. They condemn also others who are now spreading certain Jewish opinions, that before the resurrection of the dead the godly shall take possession of the kingdom of the world, the ungodly being everywhere suppressed. (The Confession of Faith: Which Was Submitted to His Imperial Majesty Charles V. At the Diet of Augsburg in the Year 1530. by Philip Melanchthon, 1497-1560. Translated by F. Bente and W. H. T. Dau. Published in: Triglot Concordia: The Symbolical Books of the Ev. Lutheran Church. St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 95.)

There would have been no reason to condemn groups for specific teachings if those groups did not teach them. Hence, not just Catholic sources, but Protestant ones as well have condemned millenarianism.

Early Christians, including many considered to be saints by the Roman and Eastern Orthodox Catholics, did teach premillenarianism. For Thomas Nash to imply otherwise is a historic error.

Papias, who was a hearer of John and a friend of Polycarp (and is considered to be a saint by Roman Catholics), in the early second century taught about the millennial reign. Eusebius recorded that Papias (an early 2nd century leader) taught:

…there will be a period of a thousand years after the resurrection of the dead, and that the kingdom of Christ will be set up in material form on this very earth … (Eusebius. The History of the Church, Book III, Chapter XXIX, Verse 12, p. 69)

Here is another translation of the above:

… there will be a millennium after the resurrection from the dead, when the personal reign of Christ will be established on this earth (Fragments of Papias, VI. See also Eusebius, Church History, Book 3, XXXIX, 12).

Papias taught that it would be a time of great abundance:

In like manner, [He said] that a grain of wheat would produce ten thousand ears, and that every ear would have ten thousand grains, and every grain would yield ten pounds of clear, pure, fine flour; and that apples, and seeds, and grass would produce in similar proportions; and that all animals, feeding then only on the productions of the earth, would become peaceable and harmonious, and be in perfect subjection to man.” [Testimony is borne to these things in writing by Papias, an ancient man, who was a hearer of John and a friend of Polycarp, in the fourth of his books; for five books were composed by him…] (Fragments of Papias, IV).

Irenaeus, another heretical leader (but one Roman Catholics consider to be a saint), claimed to have met Polycarp of Smyrna. Here is some of what he wrote about this:

Thus, then, the six hundred years of Noah, in whose time the deluge occurred because of the apostasy, and the number of the cubits of the image for which these just men were sent into the fiery furnace, do indicate the number of the name of that man in whom is concentrated the whole apostasy of six thousand years, and unrighteousness, and wickedness, and false prophecy, and deception (Irenaeus. Adversus haereses, Book V, Chapter 29, Verse 2. Excerpted from Ante-Nicene Fathers, Volume 1. Edited by Alexander Roberts & James Donaldson. American Edition, 1885. Online Edition Copyright © 2004 by K. Knight).

Inasmuch, therefore, as the opinions of certain [orthodox persons] are derived from heretical discourses, they are both ignorant of God’s dispensations , and of the mystery of the resurrection of the just , and of the [ earthly ] kingdom which is the commencement of incorruption, by means of which kingdom those who shall be worthy are accustomed gradually to partake of the divine nature (capere Deum ); and it is necessary to tell them respecting those things, that it behoves the righteous first to receive the promise of the inheritance which God promised to the fathers, and to reign in it, when they rise again to behold God in this creation which is renovated , and that the judgment should take place afterwards (Irenaeus. Adversus haereses, Book V, Chapter 32, Verse 1. Translated by Alexander Roberts and William Rambaut. From Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol. 1. Edited by Alexander Roberts, James Donaldson, and A. Cleveland Coxe. (Buffalo, NY: Christian Literature Publishing Co., 1885.) Revised and edited for New Advent by Kevin Knight. <http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/0103532.htm>.).

And again He says, “Whosoever shall have left lands, or houses, or parents, or brethren, or children because of Me, he shall receive in this world an hundred-fold, and in that to come he shall inherit eternal life.” For what are the hundred-fold [rewards] in this word, the entertainments given to the poor, and the suppers for which a return is made? These are [to take place] in the times of the kingdom, that is, upon the seventh day, which has been sanctified, in which God rested from all the works which He created, which is the true Sabbath of the righteous, which they shall not be engaged in any earthly occupation; but shall have a table at hand prepared for them by God, supplying them with all sorts of dishes (Irenaeus. Adversus haereses, Book V, Chapter 33, Verse 2. Excerpted from Ante-Nicene Fathers, Volume 1. Edited by Alexander Roberts & James Donaldson. American Edition, 1885. Online Edition Copyright © 2004 by K. Knight).

That the whole creation shall, according to God’s will, obtain a vast increase, that it may bring forth and sustain fruits such [as we have mentioned], Isaiah declares: “And there shall be upon every high mountain, and upon every prominent hill, water running everywhere in that day, when many shall perish, when walls shall fall. And the light of the moon shall be as the light of the sun, seven times that of the day, when He shall heal the anguish of His people, and do away with the pain of His stroke.” Now “the pain of the stroke” means that inflicted at the beginning upon disobedient man in Adam, that is, death; which [stroke] the Lord will heal when He raises us from the dead, and restores the inheritance of the fathers, as Isaiah again says: “And thou shall be confident in the LORD, and He will cause thee to pass over the whole earth, and feed thee with the inheritance of Jacob thy father.” This is what the Lord declared: “Happy are those servants whom the Lord when He cometh shall find watching. Verily I say unto you, that He shall gird Himself, and make them to sit down [to meat], and will come forth and serve them. And if He shall come in the evening watch, and find them so, blessed are they, because He shall make them sit down, and minister to them; or if this be in the second, or it be in the third, blessed are they.” Again John also says the very same in the Apocalypse: “Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection.” Then, too, Isaiah has declared the time when these events shall occur; he says: “And I said, Lord, how long? Until the cities be wasted without inhabitant, and the houses be without men, and the earth be left a desert. And after these things the LORD shall remove us men far away (longe nos faciet Deus homines), and those who shall remain shall multiply upon the earth.” Then Daniel also says this very thing: “And the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of those under the heaven, is given to the saints of the Most High God, whose kingdom is everlasting, and all dominions shall serve and obey Him.” And lest the promise named should be understood as referring to this time, it was declared to the prophet: “And come thou, and stand in thy lot at the consummation of the days.” Now, that the promises were not announced to the prophets and the fathers alone, but to the Churches united to these from the nations (Irenaeus. Adversus haereses, Book V, Chapter 34, Verses 2-3. Excerpted from Ante-Nicene Fathers, Volume 1. Edited by Alexander Roberts & James Donaldson. American Edition, 1885. Online Edition Copyright © 2004 by K. Knight).

If, however, any shall endeavour to allegorize [prophecies] of this kind, they shall not be found consistent with themselves in all points, and shall be confuted by the teaching of the very expressions [in question]. For example: When the cities of the Gentiles shall be desolate, so that they be not inhabited, and the houses so that there shall be no men in them and the land shall be left desolate. For, behold, says Isaiah, the day of the Lord comes past remedy, full of fury and wrath, to lay waste the city of the earth, and to root sinners out of it. And again he says, Let him be taken away, that he behold not the glory of God.And when these things are done, he says, God will remove men far away, and those that are left shall multiply in the earth. And they shall build houses, and shall inhabit them themselves: and plant vineyards, and eat of them themselves. For all these and other words were unquestionably spoken in reference to the resurrection of the just, which takes place after the coming of Antichrist, and the destruction of all nations under his rule; in [the times of] which [resurrection] the righteous shall reign in the earth, waxing stronger by the sight of the Lord: and through Him they shall become accustomed to partake in the glory of God the Father, and shall enjoy in the kingdom intercourse and communion with the holy angels, and union with spiritual beings; and [with respect to] those whom the Lord shall find in the flesh, awaiting Him from heaven, and who have suffered tribulation, as well as escaped the hands of the Wicked one (Irenaeus. Adversus haereses, Book V, Chapter 35, Verse 1. Excerpted from Ante-Nicene Fathers, Volume 1. Edited by Alexander Roberts & James Donaldson. American Edition, 1885. Online Edition Copyright © 2004 by K. Knight).

Thus Irenaeus clearly taught that after 6,000 years of human reign there was to be a physical kingdom of God on the earth and that resurrected saints would reign in that kingdom. He also objected to those that allegorize it away, which is officially what the Greco-Roman faiths teach.

Irenaeus also taught:

But when this Antichrist shall have devastated all things in this world, he will reign for three years and six months, and sit in the temple at Jerusalem; and then the Lord will come from heaven in the clouds, in the glory of the Father, sending this man and those who follow him into the lake of fire; but bringing in for the righteous the times of the kingdom, that is, the rest, the hallowed seventh day; and restoring to Abraham the promised inheritance, in which kingdom the Lord declared, that “many coming from the east and from the west should sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.” (Irenaeus. Adversus haereses, Book V, Chapter 30:4)

Here Irenaeus is teaching that the seventh one thousand years begins after the final Antichrist has reigned for 3 1/2 years.

Even though he held some odd ideas, even Justin Martyr had learned about the millennium:

But I and others, who are right-minded Christians on all points, are assured that there will be a resurrection of the dead, and a thousand years in Jerusalem, which will then be built, adorned, and enlarged, the prophets Ezekiel and Isaiah and others declare.

For Isaiah spake thus concerning this space of a thousand years: ‘For there shall be the new heaven and the new earth, and the former shall not be remembered, or come into their heart; but they shall find joy and gladness in it, which things I create’…For as Adam was told that in the day he ate of the tree he would die, we know that he did not complete a thousand years. We have perceived, moreover, that the expression, ‘The day of the Lord is as a thousand years,’ is connected with this subject. And further, there was a certain man with us, whose name was John, one of the apostles of Christ, who prophesied, by a revelation that was made to him, that those who believed in our Christ would dwell a thousand years in Jerusalem; and that thereafter the general, and, in short, the eternal resurrection and judgment of all men would likewise take place (Dialogue. Chapters 80-81).

Thus, Justin is condemning any who do not believe in a literal thousand year reign as not “right-minded Christians” or non-believers. The second century leaders who professed Christ, including some heretical ones, clearly believed in the teaching that Christ would return and reign for a thousand years on the earth.

The Church of God leader (who is considered to be a saint by the Roman and Eastern Orthodox Catholics), Melito of Sardis taught the millennium (Danielou, Cardinal Jean-Guenole-Marie. The Theology of Jewish Christianity. Translated by John A. Baker. The Westminister Press, 1964). Here is more information about Melito’s views:

A few years after Saint Justin’s death, and in the surrounding areas of Ephesus, Melito of Sardis, a well-known bishop and his followers defended millennialism. He undoubtedly borrowed some of his theories from his compatriot, Papias and relied on the Apocalypse. (Gry L. Le millenarisme dans ses origines et son developpement. Alphonse Picard, Paris, 1904, p. 81. Translated into English by Gisele Gaudet, March 2015.)

More could be listed (to see more, check out the article Did The Early Church Teach Millenarianism?).

Now consider that as late as 1966, a Roman Pontiff blessed a book that endorsed a version of millenarianism.:

The saints are then to reign with Christ a thousand years…Many early Christians took this as a literal description…Millenarians, i.e., believers in the reign of a thousand years. This belief was common in the early Church…It appeared from time to time in the Middle Ages, and is still advocated by some of the more obscure sects…

…the time of the First Resurrection will end…It is the time when the Seventh Millennium will set in, and will be the day of Sabbath in the plan of creation…It has been the common opinion among Jews, Gentiles, and Latin and Greek Christians, that the present evil world will last no more than 6,000 years…Christians and Jews, from the beginning of Christianity, and before, have taught that 6,000 years after the creation of Adam and Eve, the consummation will occur. The period after the consummation is to be the seventh day of creation–the Sabbath…St. Jerome said, “It is a common belief that the world will last 6,000 years.”

…I believe that as the last days come to an end so will the sixth day of creation (Culligan E. The Last World War and the End of Time. The book was blessed by Pope Paul VI, 1966. TAN Books, Rockford (IL), pp. 67, 113-115).

So, no longer teaching the millennium, nor the 6000 year plan (for more details see Does God Have a 6,000 Year Plan? What Year Does the 6,000 Years End?) are changes in Roman Catholic understanding. Because of this many Catholics will not know when the end will come (see also When Can the Great Tribulation Begin?).

Premillenarianism is not an invention of Protestants.

Early Christians and other professors of Christ held to it.

And we in the Continuing Church of God (and we ARE NOT Protestant) still do.

That being said, it is true that the Jews do NOT need to build a Temple before Jesus will return to establish the millennial Kingdom of God.

As far as the Temple in Jerusalem currently being obsolete, that is correct.

While the Bible does tell of animal sacrifices being stopped prior to the time that Jesus will return to establish the millennial Kingdom of God, neither the Bible nor the Jews teach that a massive Jewish Temple must be built on the area claimed to be the Temple Mount in order to perform animal sacrifices (the actual location of the original temple is a matter of dispute).

Not only have representatives of the Sanhedrin and Temple Institute directly told me this, consider that after the first Jerusalem temple was built and left in ruins, the Bible itself specifically shows that sacrifices were made in the time of Ezra BEFORE the second temple was ready:

6 From the first day of the seventh month began they to offer burnt offerings unto the LORD. But the foundation of the temple of the LORD was not yet laid. (Ezra 3:6)

Thus, Jews know that they can perform animal sacrifices without a rebuilt Temple.

So while theologically and historically, Thomas Nash made many errors, his view that the Jews do not need a temple to be rebuilt before Jesus returns is correct. He is also correct that certain ideas associated with Jerusalem are obsolete (see, for example, Does the Church of God need to be headquartered in Jerusalem?).

And as far as the Temple Institute goes, while it does want a massive Jewish temple built in Jerusalem, as well as the removal of Islamic buildings from the Temple Mount area, many people supporting its goals will accept limited abilities to sacrifice as the resumption of animal sacrifices is prophesied and will come to pass. But rebuilding a massive Jewish temple in Jerusalem before Jesus returns is not.

Some items of possibly related interest may include:

Why is a Jewish Temple in Jerusalem Not Required? Although people like Timothy LaHaye teach a third Jewish temple is required, who is ‘the temple of God” in the New Testament? Does the Bible require a rebuilt Jewish Temple? Here is a related item in the Spanish language ¿Por qué no se requiere un templo judío en Jerusalén? Here is a link to a sermon titled The Temple, Prophecy, and the Work.
Nascent Sanhedrin and Prophecy The reconstituted Sanhedrin wants the reimplementation of animal sacrifices. A related video is titled Sanhedrin pushing animal sacrifices. And a newer one is: Sanhedrin makes burnt offering to dedicate altar!
The Red Heifer, Jewish Beliefs, and the End of the World The Temple Institute is watching a ‘red heifer.’ Why might this be important in the sequence of end time events? Here is a related link in the Spanish language Novilla roja descubierta en EE.UU. e Instituto del Templo está interesado en ella. Here is a related video in English The Red Heifer and the End of the World.
Hope of Salvation: How the Continuing Church of God differs from Protestantism How the real Church of God differs from mainstream/traditional Protestants, is perhaps the question I am asked most by those without a Church of God background. As far as some changes affecting Protestantism, watch the video Charismatic Kenneth Copeland and Anglican Tony Palmer: Protestants Beware! [Português: Esperança do salvação: Como a igreja do deus difere da maioria de protestantes]. Several related sermon are also available: Protestant, Baptist, and CCOG History; The First Protestant, God’s Command, Grace, & Character; The New Testament, Martin Luther, and the Canon; Eucharist, Passover, and Easter; Views of Jews, Lost Tribes, Warfare, & Baptism; Scripture vs. Tradition, Sabbath vs. Sunday; and How Does the Church of God Differ from Protestantism? These sermons also cover materials not in the book.
Church of God on Jerusalem’s Western Hill Could this building, often referred to as the Cenacle, which is located on a Mount Zion, possibly have been the oldest actual Christian church building?
Does the ‘Cenacle’ deal have prophetic ramifications? After a 20 year negotiation, the Church of Rome has negotiated the right to have Catholic mass in the building known as the Cenacle. It is in the area where the Church of God on Jerusalem’s Western Hill once stood. This is believed to be the location of the earliest Christian church building. How does the Bible define the ‘temple of God’ in the New Testament? Could this be the area where the ‘man of sin’ will sit in the “temple of God’ that Bible prophecy discusses in 2 Thessalonians 2:3-4? This is a YouTube video.
Nazarene Christianity: Were the Original Christians Nazarenes? Who were the Nazarene Christians? What did they believe? Should 21st century Christians be modern Nazarenes? Is there a group that exists now that traces its history through the Nazarenes and holds the same beliefs today? Here is a link to a related video sermon Nazarene Christians: Were the early Christians “Nazarenes”?
Does the Church of God need to be headquartered in Jerusalem? Some say so. But what does the Bible teach?
Location of the Early Church: Another Look at Ephesus, Smyrna, and Rome What actually happened to the primitive Church? And did the Bible tell about this in advance?
The ‘Peace Deal’ of Daniel 9:27 This prophecy could give up to 3 1/2 years advance notice of the coming Great Tribulation. Will most ignore or misunderstand its fulfillment? Here is a link to a related sermon video Daniel 9:27 and the Start of the Great Tribulation.
Jerusalem: Past, Present, and Future What does the Bible say about Jerusalem and its future? Is Jerusalem going to be divided and eliminated? Is Jesus returning to the area of Jerusalem? There is also a related YouTube video you can watch titled Jerusalem To be divided and eliminated.
Did The Early Church Teach Millenarianism? Was the millennium (sometimes called chiliasm) taught by early Christians? Who condemned it? Will Jesus literally reign for 1000 years on the earth? Is this time near? Two related sermons are available Millennial Utopia and The Millennium.
Does God Have a 6,000 Year Plan? What Year Does the 6,000 Years End? Was a 6000 year time allowed for humans to rule followed by a literal thousand year reign of Christ on Earth taught by the early Christians? Does God have 7,000 year plan? What year may the six thousand years of human rule end? When will Jesus return? 2027 or 20xx? There is also a video titled 6000 Years: When will God’s Kingdom Come? Here is a link to the article in Spanish: ¿Tiene Dios un plan de 6,000 años?
Who is the Man of Sin of 2 Thessalonians 2? Is this the King of the North, the ten-horned beast of Revelation 13:1-11, or the two-horned Beast of Revelation 13:12-16? Some rely on traditions, but what does the Bible teach? Here is a related link in Spanish/español: ¿Quién es el Hombre de Pecado de 2 Tesalonicenses 2? Here is a version in Mandarin: 主编: 谁是’大罪人’?Here is a link to a related YouTube video, in English, titled Who is the Man of Sin?
Continuing Church of God The group striving to be most faithful amongst all real Christian groups to the word of God.
What was the Liturgy of the Early Church? Were early church services mainly scriptural, emotional, or sacramental? Who follows the basic original liturgy today? A related video is also available: What were early Christian church services like?
Continuing History of the Church of God This pdf booklet is a historical overview of the true Church of God and some of its main opponents from Acts 2 to the 21st century. Related sermon links include Continuing History of the Church of God: c. 31 to c. 300 A.D. and Continuing History of the Church of God: 4th-16th Centuries and Continuing History of the Church of God: 17th-20th Centuries. The booklet is available in Spanish: Continuación de la Historia de la Iglesia de Dios, German: Kontinuierliche Geschichte der Kirche Gottes, French: L Histoire Continue de l Église de Dieu and Ekegusii Omogano Bw’ekanisa Ya Nyasae Egendererete.
Hope of Salvation: How the Continuing Church of God differs from most Protestants How the real Church of God differs from mainstream/traditional Protestants, is perhaps the question I am asked most by those without a Church of God background. As far as some changes affecting Protestantism, watch the video Charismatic Kenneth Copeland and Anglican Tony Palmer: Protestants Beware! [Português: Esperança do salvação: Como a igreja do deus difere da maioria de protestantes]. A sermon is also available: How Does the Church of God Differ from Protestantism?
The Similarities and Dissimilarities between Martin Luther and Herbert W. Armstrong This article clearly shows some of the doctrinal differences between the two. At this time of doctrinal variety and a tendency by many to accept certain aspects of Protestantism, the article should help clarify why the genuine Church of God is NOT Protestant. Do you really know what the Protestant Reformer Martin Luther taught and should you follow his doctrinal example? Here is a related sermon video: Martin Luther and Herbert Armstrong: Reformers with Differences.
Which Is Faithful: The Roman Catholic Church or the Continuing Church of God? Do you know that both groups shared a lot of the earliest teachings? Do you know which church changed? Do you know which group is most faithful to the teachings of the apostolic church? Which group best represents true Christianity? This documented article answers those questions. [Português: Qual é fiel: A igreja católica romana ou a igreja do deus?]
Why Should American Catholics Fear Unity with the Orthodox? (And the Protestants) Are the current ecumenical meetings a good thing or will they result in disaster? Is doctrinal compromise good? Here is a link to a related video Should you be concerned about the ecumenical movement?
Some Similarities and Differences Between the Eastern Orthodox Church and the Continuing Church of God Both groups claim to be the original church, but both groups have differing ways to claim it. Both groups have some amazing similarities and some major differences. Do you know what they are?

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