The Kotel. The Western Wall. The Wailing Wall. Three separate names which describe one structure, one monolithic edifice “The Wall,” which is currently the holiest site in all of Judaism. For, “The Wall” is all that remains of the Temple Mount compound that was destroyed in AD 70 by the future Roman emperor Titus. In fact, “The Wall” simply was a retaining or outer wall of the compound that was destroyed. In fact, and according to the Jewish Virtual Library, “The Wall” was probably not destroyed as well was because the Romans saw it as an “insignificant” area of the compound during the final phases of the destruction.
However, in 1967, it was the penultimate moment for the Israeli Defense Force as they captured the entirety of Jerusalem. The awareness that the Temple Mount was once again in the hands of the Jewish people after nearly 2,000 years was a moment that the Jewish people and the world would never forget (see YouTube link below). Today “The Wall” holds a remarkable place in the hearts and minds of the Jewish people both in Israel and around the world.
During my first trip to Israel in January of this year, I desperately wanted to see “The Wall” and the picture to the left is from my first trip which was during the early evening. It was remarkable. It was moving. And when I was able to reach and touch the wall from the women’s section, I felt was if I was touching 2,000 years of Jewish history and sorrow. I took pictures of men dancing and a young girl peering over the wall dividing the women and the men. It was one of those moments that touched me in ways that I will never, never forget.
I returned to “The Wall” in August/September of this year on a separate trip. I was able to be there on a Shabbat evening as thousands arrived to welcome in the Sabbath. I saw dancing. I saw prayers. I saw everything and that is what disturbed me most. For I asked God on this trip to Israel in August/September to allow me to see His Chosen Ones and His Chosen Land through His eyes … and I believe He answered my prayers.
I returned on the Sabbath day to pray for the salvation of the Jewish people at “The Wall.” And, yes, it was September in Israel (i.e., hot!) but I was not warm walking down to The Kotel. I was comfortable, even cool. However, and upon arrival at “The Wall,” I began to get very warm despite drinking lots of water. I began to pray at “The Wall” and almost fainted from the overwhelming heat I was experiencing. I walked away and immediately begin to feel cool and comfortable again. I returned to the hostel and slept for hours overwhelmed by the experience of it all. Because once again I believe, and because I believe God allowed me to see His People and His Land through His eyes, I saw everything and that is what disturbed me most.
I believe I saw a people who are even more desperately lost than I even realized … and that in and of itself is remarkable in so many ways
I believe I saw a people who have substituted a personal relationship with Messiah Jesus … WITH A STONE WALL!
I believe I saw a people who are longing for answers … but where are the Churches and Christians who have the truth who could tell them?
I believe I saw the people Jesus saw when He said in Matthew 23 — “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing!’”
After this last experience at “The Wall” and seeing the remaining vestige of the Temple through Jesus’ eyes, I will never see it the same way again. For me and forevermore, “The Wall” will symbolize something that separates the Jewish people from Messiah Jesus. For as long as they look towards “The Wall,” they will not look towards Jesus and see Him “face to face” (panim el panim). Let us who know The Truth help them to begin looking in a new and eternal direction known as Jesus the Jewish Messiah.