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What is the Temple Mount?

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Question: What is the Temple Mount?
Answer: The Binding of Isaac

To test Abraham's faith in God, God said to Abraham, "Take, I beg of you, your son, your only son, whom you love, Yitzhak, and get yourself to the land of Moriah and offer him up there as an offering on one of the mountains on which I will tell you." (Genesis 22:2)

On Mount Moriah in Jerusalem, Abraham nearly offered his only son Isaac as a sacrifice. When Abraham raises his hand to slaughter Isaac, who has been bound to the altar, an angel of God tells Abraham not to kill the boy and informs him that he has passed God's test of faith. The story of Abraham's binding of Isaac (Akedat Yitzhak in Hebrew) is seen as the supreme example of faith in God and willingness to obey the will of God.

The Temples

Chronicles identifies Mount Moriah as the site upon which the First Temple, and later the Second Temple, were built. "Then Solomon began to build the Temple of the Lord in Jerusalem on Mount Moriah." (2 Chronicles 3:1) According to Jewish tradition, the Ark of the Covenant, resting in the Holy of Holies, sat on the Temple Mount.

Dome of the Rock

In the 7th century, Muslims built the Dome of the Rock to enshrine the outcrop of bedrock believed to be the place of the sacrifice on Mount Moriah. The shrine, basically a Byzantine-styled building encircling the Holy Rock, is the third holiest place in Islam after the Ka’aba in Mecca and the Prophet’s Mosque in Medina.

Mount Moriah

Thus, what today is called the Temple Mount is believed to be Mount Moriah -- the place where Abraham nearly sacrificed Isaac, where the First and Second Temples were built and where the Dome of the Rocks currently stands.

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