TEL AVIV – In a sermon broadcast on official Palestinian television, a well-known cleric claimed that in the future, Jews will build a temple outside of the area of the Temple Mount, where they will worship the devil.
The Muslim preacher, Sheik Khaled Al-Mughrabi, who gives classes twice per week in the Al-Aqsa Mosque, further taught that at the “end of time,” Muslims will seek out and destroy Jews wherever they are.
In his sermon Friday, Mughrabi referenced a Hadith – the accounts of Muhammad second only to the Quran – foretelling a day when Jews will hide from Muslims, but they will be outed by the rock and the tree, which will both exclaim: “O Muslim, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him.”
A translation of Mughrabi’s sermon was provided by the Palestinian Media Watch organization.
Mughrabi stated: “The Children of Israel will be forced – they will not concede – they will be forced to change their plans to build the Temple inside the structure of the Al-Aqsa Mosque and will have to build it outside the Al-Aqsa Mosque.
“A Temple of heresy to worship the Devil. Why? Because the Anti-Christ won’t appear unless this Temple is built and the Devil is worshiped there.
“[At the End of Days] we will follow the Jews everywhere. They will not escape us. They will not be able to escape us.
“The rock and tree will speak, according to the Hadith (tradition) of the Prophet [Muhammad] … and it is a reliable promise from the Prophet according to which the tree and the rock will speak and say: ‘O Muslim, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him.’
“The Children of Israel will all be exterminated, the Anti-Christ will be killed and the Muslims will live in comfort for a long time.”
Temple Mount and ‘wave of terror’
The Temple Mount and Al-Aqsa Mosque have been central themes in the current so-called Palestinian wave of terror, specifically the repeated Palestinian claim of a Jewish threat to the Al-Aqsa Mosque.
Many of the Palestinians who have carried out anti-Israel attacks first posted messages on social media regarding rumors of a pending Jewish takeover of the mosque and the associated compound, the Temple Mount.
The claims of a Jewish “threat” to the mosque were kicked into high gear by media outlets controlled by Hamas, Islamic Jihad and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’ Fatah party.
Palestinian leaders have repeatedly alleged that Israel was drawing up plans to limit Muslim access to the Al-Aqsa Mosque or even destroy the site.
This even though Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government has given numerous assurances there are no such plans and that the only times access was temporarily limited – Muslim men below the age of 40 were restricted on some days – was in direct response to Palestinian attacks against Jewish worshipers and police forces on the site.
“We don’t attack anyone and we want [Israelis] to stop attacking us; we want them not to enter Al-Aqsa,” Abbas told reporters last week.
“We support those who are protecting the Al-Aqsa Mosque, those who suffer a great deal to protect Al-Aqsa,” Abbas said. “We tell the Israeli government: Stay away from our holy places, the Islamic and Christian holy places. We want peace, and our hands will remain extended for peace, regardless of what is happening to us.”
Abbas referenced “those who are protecting the Al-Aqsa Mosque.” In actuality, what has been happening for weeks, as WND has reported, is that the radical Islamic Movement has been mobilizing Arab youth to smuggle fire bombs, pipe bombs, Molotov cocktails and stones onto the Temple Mount to attack Jews ascending the site.
The youth themselves have used the Al-Aqsa Mosque as a staging base to attack Jews, drawing Israeli police forces close to the sensitive mosque compound and thus fueling the cycle of rumors of Israeli incursions into the mosque.
The Israeli police have been careful not to enter the mosque itself, even though the Palestinian instigators base their militant operations inside the site.
Look whose access is really limited
The Palestinian claim of Israeli plans to restrict Muslims from the Temple Mount is contrasted with the facts on the ground. Jews and Christians are actually barred from the mount during most hours of the day and are never allowed to pray at the site or carry holy objects.
Those rules, enforced by the Israeli police, are imposed by the real custodians of the Temple Mount, the Waqf, which is controlled jointly by the Palestinians and the Jordanians.
The Temple Mount was opened to the public until September 2000, when the Palestinians started their intifada, or “uprising,” by throwing stones at Jewish worshipers after then-candidate for prime minister Ariel Sharon visited the area.
After the onset of violence, the new Sharon government closed the Temple Mount to non-Muslims, using checkpoints to control all pedestrian traffic for fear of further clashes with the Palestinians.
The Temple Mount was reopened to non-Muslims in August 2003.
It since has been open to non-Muslims only during certain hours, and not on any Christian, Jewish or Muslim holidays or other days considered “sensitive” by the Waqf.
During “open” days, Jews and Christians are allowed to ascend the mount, usually through organized tours and only if they conform first to a strict set of guidelines, which include demands that they not pray or bring any “holy objects” to the site.
Visitors are banned from entering any of the mosques without direct Waqf permission. Rules are enforced by Waqf agents, who watch tours closely and alert nearby Israeli police to any breaking of their guidelines.
The Palestinian claim that Israel is trying to destroy the Al-Aqsa Mosque is farcical, especially because it is propagated by the same PA that has been caught on several occasions trying to destroy Jewish Temple-era antiquities on the mount.
Last week, hundreds of Palestinian youth set fire to the Joseph’s Tomb complex, causing severe damage to the revered burial place, considered Judaism’s third holiest site.
In 1997, the Waqf conducted a large dig on the Temple Mount during construction of a massive mosque at an area referred to as Solomon’s Stables. The Wafq at the time disposed truckloads of dirt containing Jewish artifacts from the First and Second Temple periods.
After media reported the disposals, Israeli authorities froze the construction permit given to the Wafq, and the dirt was transferred to Israeli archaeologists for analysis. The Israeli authorities found scores of Jewish Temple relics in the nearly disposed dirt, including coins with Hebrew writing referencing the Temple, part of a Hasmonean lamp, several other Second Temple lamps, Temple-period pottery with Jewish markings, a marble pillar shaft and other Temple-period artifacts.
The Waqf was widely accused of attempting to hide evidence of the existence of the Jewish Temples.
And in 2007, WND reported from the site when Islamic authorities using heavy machinery to dig on the Temple Mount were caught red-handed again destroying Temple-era antiquities and what some believed could have been a section of an outer wall of the Second Jewish Temple.
Temples ‘never existed’
Most Palestinian leaders routinely deny well-documented Jewish ties to the Temple Mount.
Speaking to WND in a 2007 interview, Waqf official and chief Palestinian Justice Taysir Tamimi claimed the Jewish Temples “never existed.”
“About these so-called two Temples, they never existed, certainly not at the Haram Al- Sharif (Temple Mount),” said Tamimi, who is considered the second most important Palestinian cleric after Muhammad Hussein, the grand mufti of Jerusalem.
“Israel started since 1967 making archaeological digs to show Jewish signs to prove the relationship between Judaism and the city, and they found nothing. There is no Jewish connection to Israel before the Jews invaded in the 1880s,” said Tamimi.
The Palestinian cleric denied the validity of dozens of digs verified by experts worldwide revealing Jewish artifacts from the First and Second Temples, tunnels that snake under the Temple Mount and more than 100 ritual immersion pools believed to have been used by Jewish priests to cleanse themselves before services. The cleansing process is detailed in the Torah.
Asked about the Western Wall, Tamimi said the structure was a tying post for Muhammad’s horse and that it is part of the Al-Aqsa Mosque, even though the wall predates the mosque by more than 1,000 years.
“The Western Wall is the western wall of the Al-Aqsa Mosque. It’s where Prophet Muhammad tied his animal, which took him from Mecca to Jerusalem to receive the revelations of Allah.”
The Palestinian media also regularly state the Jewish Temples never existed.
Judaism’s holiest site
The Temple Mount is the holiest site in Judaism. Muslims now claim it is their third holiest site, although their stake changed several times throughout history.
The First Temple was built by King Solomon in the 10th century B.C. It was destroyed by the Babylonians in 586 B.C. The Second Temple was rebuilt in 515 B.C. after Jerusalem was freed from Babylonian captivity. That temple was destroyed by the Roman Empire in A.D. 70. Each temple stood for about four centuries.
According to the Talmud, the world was created from the foundation stone of the Temple Mount. It’s believed to be the biblical Mount Moriah, where Abraham fulfilled God’s test of his willingness to sacrifice his son Isaac.
The Temple Mount has remained a focal point for Jewish services for thousands of years. Prayers for a return to Jerusalem and the rebuilding of the Temple have been uttered by Jews since the Second Temple was destroyed, according to Jewish tradition.
The Al-Aqsa Mosque was constructed in about A.D. 709 to serve as a shrine near another shrine, the Dome of the Rock, which was built by an Islamic caliph. Al-Aqsa was meant to mark what Muslims came to believe was the place at which Muhammad, the founder of Islam, ascended to heaven to receive revelations from Allah.
Jerusalem is not mentioned in the Quran. It is mentioned in the Hebrew Bible 656 times.
Islamic tradition states Muhammad took a journey in a single night on a horse from “a sacred mosque” – believed to be in Mecca in southern Saudi Arabia – to “the farthest mosque.” From a rock there, according to the tradition, he ascended to heaven. The farthest mosque became associated with Jerusalem about 120 years ago.
According to research by Israeli author Shmuel Berkovits, Islam historically disregarded Jerusalem as being holy. Berkovits points out in his book “How Dreadful Is This Place!” that Muhammad was said to loathe Jerusalem and what it stood for. He wrote that Muhammad made a point of eliminating pagan sites of worship and sanctifying only one place – the Kaaba in Mecca – to signify there is only one deity.
As late as the 14th century, Islamic scholar Taqi al-Din Ibn Taymiyya, whose writings influenced the Wahhabi movement in Arabia, ruled that sacred Islamic sites are to be found only in the Arabian Peninsula and that “in Jerusalem, there is not a place one calls sacred, and the same holds true for the tombs of Hebron.”
A guide to the Temple Mount by the Supreme Muslim Council in Jerusalem published in 1925 listed it as Jewish and as the site of Solomon’s Temple. The Temple Institute acquired a copy of the official 1925 “Guide Book to Al-Haram Al-Sharif,” which states on page 4: “Its identity with the site of Solomon’s Temple is beyond dispute. This, too, is the spot, according to universal belief, on which David ‘built there an altar unto the Lord.’”