Jerusalem: The Temple Mount Colonnade
The enormous Temple Mount of Herod had a 45-foot-wide colonnade around it. The eastern colonnade was called Solomon’s Colonnade and was used by Jesus and the early Christians as a place of meeting and teaching. More than 40 feet high, the roof of the colonnade rested on the outside wall of the platform on one end and on two rows of columns on the other. The southern colonnade was much larger and more than three stories tall; it was called the royal stoa. The Sanhedrin met on the eastern end of the stoa. The remainder was the commercial center for the Temple. It was probably in the royal stoa where Jesus confronted the merchants and disrupted their market because they were cheating the people and intruding upon the Gentile’s place of prayer (Matt. 21:12-13).
This model gives us a good idea of what the colonnade of Jesus’ time looked like and shows why it would have been an attractive place to sit and discuss, worship, and preach.
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