After the shocking victory by Donald Trump in the 2016 US Presidential Election, Israel's Sanhedrin has sent out a letter requesting that the president of Russia, Vladimir Putin, and the President-elect of the United States, Donald Trump, fulfill their Cyrus-like roles to build the third temple in Jerusalem. This request comes four years after Russian President Putin went on his third official trip to Jerusalem.

Putin's prayer

During this trip, Putin made a late-night visit to the Western Wall. When he arrived, Putin stood in silence for several moments, offered up a personal prayer, then read Psalms from a Russian-Hebrew prayer book.

An Israeli called out in Russian, “Welcome, president Putin.” Hearing this, Putin approached the man. He explained the importance of the Temple Mount and the Jewish Temple. Chadrei Charedim, an Orthodox Hebrew news site, reported that Putin responded, “That’s exactly the reason I came here – to pray for the Temple to be built again.” It is clear from this that Putin desire for the Temple to be rebuilt, and the Sanhedrin would like for him to fulfill his prayer with the help of now US President-Elect Trump.

While there has been no official response, the request being made in itself is significant from a religious standpoint. The rebuilding of the temple in Jerusalem, on the same spot that the previous two temples were built, which is thought to be where the Dome of the Rock currently stands, would be a fulfillment of a Biblical end times prophecy that talks about how the third temple will exist during the tribulation period spoken of in the New Testament of the Bible, particularly in Revelations.

"The temple can be literally resurrected overnight! That’s because the Jews plan to erect a tent temple like the Tabernacle of Moses, and they are ready to do so at any moment," explains David R. Reagan, of "Everything has been prepared. Once this temporary temple is put up, they will resume the sacrifices and then start building a more permanent structure around and above the temporary one."

Two obstacles to building the temple

According to Reagan, there are currently two major obstacles to the reconstruction of the third temple.

The first is, of course, the location. The third temple must be built in the same place that was home to the previous two temples. This is because the "Holy of Holies" must be in the same place. The issue here is that no one knows where exactly the other temples were built. It is most commonly held by scholars that the correct place is where the Dome of the Rock now stands.

But since no excavations are allowed on the site, that can't be confirmed.

The other obstacle is that most Jewish people have no desire to have the third temple built. Any attempt to begin the process would most certainly cause war with the Muslims. There are comparatively few Israelis that want it built and that have made the preparations, but the public support is lacking.