By George Whitten, BosNewsLife Jerusalem Bureau Chief
JERUSALEM, ISRAEL (BosNewsLife) — Nearly half of Israelis want the Biblical Temple to be rebuilt in Jerusalem according to a major opinion poll, commissioned by Israel’s Knesset Television Channel and monitored by BosNewsLife Saturday, July 24.
Of those questioned, 49 percent said they want the rebuilding of the destroyed Temple to take place, while only 23 percent opposed it. The remaining 28 percent of those polled were unsure.
The public is nearly split on whether the third Temple will become a reality, with 42 percent saying it will happen and 39 percent claiming it won’t.
On the final poll question, “Should the State of Israel take active steps towards the reconstruction?” nearly half of the participants (48 percent) answered “no”, while only 27 percent said “yes”, researchers added.
The poll was released just prior to a national day of mourning, also known as Tisha B’Av, an annual fast day in Judaism to commemorate the destruction of both the First and the Second Temple in Jerusalem.
Along with the destructions of the Temples, other infamous events have been associated with Tisha B’Av. In 1290, Jews were expelled from England on this day, according to historic records. The Alhambra Decree of 1492, deporting Jews from Spain occurred two days prior to Tisha B’Av.
Centuries later, World War One started on Tisha B’Av. And, on the eve of Tisha B’Av in 1942, the mass deportation of Jews began from the Warsaw Ghetto, en route to Treblinka concentration camp.
Traditionally, the book of Lamentations, along with the book of Job is read throughout synagogues on Tisha B’Av.