The Pinnacle of the Temple
Matt 4:5 "Then the devil took Him up into the
holy city, set Him on the pinnacle of the
The "Pinnacle Of The Temple"
The Highest Place in the
The "pinnacle" of the temple was the highest place among the
"royal colonnade" gallery built by Herod within the area of
the temple. The cloisters (porches in the NT) were among the
finest architectural features of the entire Temple.
Solomon's Porch (only remaining portion of the original
temple built by Solomon) was also located here. They were a
spectacular sight to behold, overlooking the Kedron valley.
Josephus and the Pinnacle
The historian Josephus gives an interesting description:
"This cloister deserves to be mentioned better than any
other under the sun; for, while the valley was very deep,
and its bottom could not be seen if you looked from above
into the depth, this farther vastly high elevation of the
cloister stood upon that height, insomuch that if any one
looked down from the top of the battlements, or down both
those altitudes, he would be giddy, while his sight could
not reach to such an immense depth." -Antiquities, Book 15,
Some believe the distance to have been seven hundred feet.
It was from here that the Priest on the highest pinnacle had
watched, waiting for dawn, to give the signal for beginning
the services of the day where he summoned his waiting
brethren beneath to offer the morning sacrifice.
Jewish Literature, the
Messiah, and the Pinnacle
It is interesting to note that in rabbinic literature, the
Midrash (Pesiqta Rabbati, 162a) plainly states the Jewish
belief that Messiah would manifest himself standing on the
roof of the temple. Not on any roof but "the" roof, as it
states in the NT using the definite article "the pinnacle."
No doubt that Satan enticed Jesus with the temptation to
fulfill Malachi 3:1 before the designated time.
Another interesting note is that the rabbis believed that
the person identified by God in Psalm 91 is none other than
the Messiah. This is exactly where Satan misquoted the
Scripture about the angels: "He shall give His angels charge
concerning you (and) in their hands they shall bear you
Bibliography on Ancient Customs
The Art of Ancient Egypt, Revised
by Robins, 272 Pages, Pub. 2008
Return to Ancient Customs
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