You’re Not Allowed to Pray to OUR God Here

You’re Not Allowed to Pray to OUR God Here

© David Burton 2020

The Temple Mount

     At the end of October 2019, “Five people were detained on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem . . . as they stopped to pray during their tour of the Temple Mount . . . Police arrested the worshipers.” (Ref. 1)

     And this was far from the first time. Jews have often been attacked and/or arrestefd on the Temple Mount for praying to the same God that is worshiped by the three great monotheistic religions of the world – Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Of these, only extreme adherents of the Muslim faith today attack those who pray to this one God.

     “The Temple Mount is unlike any other holy site in the world …
     “And there’s no other place on the planet that holds more meaning and sacred significance to the Jewish people – at the base of which the Western Wall of the old Temple courtyard still stands.
     “The Temple Mount is where Abraham prepared to offer his son Isaac in obedience until – foreshadowing the eventual coming of Messiah – God stopped him and provided a substitute sacrifice.
     “One thousand years later, King David purchased the threshing floor of Araunah on this spot (see 2 Samuel 24:24) and designated it to be the site for the Temple that would become a permanent habitation for the presence of God among the Jewish people.
     “It is the site of the Second Temple that stood in Yeshua’s (Jesus’) day . . .
     “Only the overwhelming force of invading armies has ever been able to drive the Jews from that rocky, sacred hill. And then, only temporarily.
     “The Babylonians, the Romans, the Crusaders, and finally the Muslim hoards have all tried. But each time, the Jewish people have been drawn back to their historic, God-granted place of origin.
     “For 4,000 years, Jerusalem in general and the Temple Mount in particular have served as the geographic focal point for the Jewish people.
     “And today, tensions and conflict surrounding the Temple Mount are unlike any other time in history.
     “. . . in June {2019} . . . Jewish visitors fell under attack when they were granted access to the Temple Mount to commemorate Jerusalem Day – celebrating God’s faithfulness in the Six Days War, when the Jewish people took back control of the Old City, reunifying Jerusalem.
     “Muslims rioted, throwing stones, chairs, anything they could get their hands on.  . . .
     “But this incident is just one of many. And the reality is, Muslims are intent on wresting complete control of the Temple Mount from the Jewish people.
     “In 1967, when the Jews won back the Old City, there was only one Mosque in the Temple Mount area. Today, there are five. [Emphasis mine]
     “In fact, Muslim groups like the Palestinian Authority accuse the Jewish visitors of the Temple Mount as being ‘invaders’ — and these groups are doing anything they can to prevent the Jewish people from worshiping at their most holy site.
     “Just last week, another violent protest erupted on the Temple Mount.
     “In honor of Tisha B’Av, the day of mourning when Jews commemorate the destruction of the First and Second Temples, Jewish visitors ascended the Temple Mount. And they were met with violence at the hands of Muslims.
     “Four police officers and dozens of others were injured in the skirmish.
     “But nothing will keep the people of Israel from gathering on God’s holy mountain. Not those who refuse to acknowledge the Jewish Temples ever existed. Not those who claim Israel has no right to exist. And not those who will stop at nothing until Israel and her people have been destroyed.” (Ref. 2)

     I am Jewish and try to attend morning services every Saturday and Sunday morning as well as on Jewish religious holidays throughout the year. We occasionally have non-Jewish visitors to our services and they are always cordially welcomed. They are never proselytized and they are always asked to partake of the refreshments provided after the services. These visitors are free to observe and pray as they wish. Often, they have questions about our service, conducted mostly in Hebrew, and these questions are always politely a nswered.

     Typically, at Thanksgiving time, the churches and my temple in our town hold an interfaith service to thank the Lord and to gather contributions of food for our local food bank. We all pray together as we thank our God, each in our own way.

     I have often attended Protestant and Catholic church service – for weddings, funerals, confirmations, first communions and other major life events. At these Christian services, I have never been told how to pray or told not to pray there because I was a Jew.

     I have frequently visited Israel. While much of my time spent there incorporated visits to historical Hebrew sites, as well as Jewish places of worship, I have also often availed myself of the opportunity to visit the numerous Christian religious and historical sites throughout the country. Not once was I ever warned not to pray there or to hide my Jewishness to prevent bring attacked.

     Extreme Muslim intolerance continues unabated as we enter the second decade of the 21st century. “As roughly 8,000 Muslim worshipers ended their prayers on the Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem on Friday {10 January 2020}, several hundred Arabs began to riot and violate public order . . .
      - - -
     “This is far from the first time riots have broken out on the Temple Mount.
     In August, Arab riots erupted on the Mount when Tisha b’Av, the Jewish memorial day for the destruction of the First and Second Jewish Temples, fell on the same day as the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha (‘Feast of the Sacrifice’), which commemorates the biblical Abraham’s readiness to sacrifice his son.
     “In June, Arabs rioted on the Temple Mount when authorities granted permission to Jewish visitors to enter on Jerusalem Day, which happened to fall during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
     “In another instance, in July 2017, two Druze Israeli policemen were shot and {killed}.
     “ ‘The Temple Mount is in second place after Mecca and Medina. No one really makes pilgrimages to the Temple Mount. There is no Hajj here. For {Muslims}, the fact that Israel captured the Temple Mount is outstanding leverage, but their real goal is elsewhere – it’s conflict,’ {said an Israeli Member of the Knesset and a former Israeli security chief.}
     “Despite capturing the Temple Mount – Judaism’s holiest site and Islam’s third-holiest – from Jordan in the 1967 Six Day War, when the Jewish state was under attack by the surrounding Arab countries, Israel gave the Jordanian Waqf, or Islamic Trust, administrative control of the site. As part of the Israel-Jordan peace treaty signed in 1994, Jordan was given official status as custodian of Muslim holy sites.” (Ref. 3)

     And the Temple Mount is not the only Jewish religious site where Muslims try to deny Jews the right to pray to the one God of the Jews, the Muslims and the Christians.
     The Cave of the Patriarchs or Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hebron is known to Jews as the Cave of Machpelah. According to the Hebrew bible, the cave and adjoining field were purchased by Abraham as a burial plot. The site is considered by Jews to be the second holiest place in the world, after the Temple Mount. The Cave of the Machpelah and Hebron came under Muslin control when Saladin defeated the Crusader Invaders just before 1300 AD. After Jordan occupied the West Bank in 1948, no Jews were allowed in the territory and consequently no Jews could visit the tomb. Following the Israeli occupation of the West Bank in the Six-Day War, Hebron came under Jewish control for the first time in 2,000 years and a 700-year-long restriction on Jews was lifted.
     In 1968, a special arrangement was made to accommodate Jewish services on the Jewish New Year and Day of Atonement. This led to a hand-grenade being thrown on the stairway leading to the tomb on October 9 when 47 Israelis were injured, 8 seriously. On November 4, a large explosion went off near the gate to the compound and 6 people, Jews and Arabs, were wounded. On Yom Kippur eve, October 3, 1976, an Arab mob destroyed several Torah scrolls and prayer books at the tomb. In May 1980, an attack on Jewish worshippers returning from prayers at the tomb left 6 dead and 17 wounded.
     In 1996 the Wye River Accords, part of the Arab-Israeli peace process, included a temporary status agreement for the site restricting access for both Jews and Muslims. As part of this agreement, the waqf (Islamic charitable trust) controls 81% of the building. This includes the whole of the southeastern section, which lies above the only known entrance to the caves and possibly over the entirety of the caves themselves. In consequence, Jews are not permitted to visit the Cenotaphs of Isaac or Rebecca, which lie entirely within the southeastern section, except for 10 days a year that hold special significance in Judaism.[4]

     In 2015, speaking after the murder of a Jew by an Arab terrorist at the Cave of the Machpelah, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, said “I say to all those who would uproot us from the Tomb of the Patriarchs - except for a few years in the previous century, we have been there for almost 4,000 years and we will stay there forever. You cannot defeat us." (Ref. 5)

     Jews aren’t the only one that Muslim extremists want to prevent from praying to God. In Egypt in 2015, Muslims violently rose up because the government was simply allowing Christian Copts to repair an existing church. In addition, these same Muslims prevented Copts from offering prayers in one of the Coptic homes in their village. Back in the 1990’s, the Christians in an Egyptian village, Tulihat, tried to build a church but were attacked and prevented by rioting Muslims.[6]

     The Muslim extremists in Israel and elsewhere around the world present a clear message – a message filled with hate, intolerance and violence. Their message states that no one but Muslims have the right to pray to their God. Their message says that others cannot pray at religious sites the Muslims have stolen or which they lay claim to, even if these sites were sacred locations for other religions long before Islam ever existed. In other words, ”What’s mine is mine and what’s yours is mine!” On the Temple Mount in Jerusalem – sacred to Christians and Jews and which is questionably of significance in the Islamic faith, Muslim bullies tell Christians and Jews that “You’re not allowed to pray to OUR God here." No matter that all three religions pray to one and the same God.


  1. Watch: Jew Arrested on Temple Mount., Mordechai Sones,, 31 October 2019.
  2. Jewish visitors attacked on the Temple Mount,, 23 August 2019.
  3. Arab riots break out on Temple Mount, World Israel News, 17 January 2020.
  4. Cave of the Patriarchs, Wikipedia, Accessed 19 January 2020.
  5. We've been here 4,000 years; terror can't beat us, Arutz Sheva 7, 30 December 2015.
  6. Muslims Prevent Christians from Praying in Coptic Home, Raymond Ibrahim,,
    12 April 2015.


  6 February 2020 {Article 399; Islam_35}    
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