There has long been speculation about what happened to the Golden Menorah and other precious Temple artifacts that were looted from the Jewish Second Temple in Jerusalem in 70 AD by the conquering Romans. It is evident that the Golden Menorah was taken as a spoil of war by their commander, Titus, to Rome as the Temple Menorah is shown on the Arch of Titus as being part of the spoils of war taken to Rome. An Italian official recently surprised many by broaching the subject of returning this Golden Menorah to the Israelis (first link). This offer includes a belief that the Temple Menorah is still in Rome. This is quite a remarkable development as no official that I can recall in either the Italian or Vatican governments have ever previously acknowledged that this historic Menorah is even in their possession. It seems logical that it may be stored and hidden somewhere deep in the catacombs under the Vatican, but that is not known for sure. If it is there, many of the Second Temple treasures may be stored there with it.

The second link discusses a letter which was sent to Pope Benedict XVI in 2015 to return the Menorah and other Second Temple treasures to the Israelis–obviously for use in a new Third Temple. The link also discusses a follow-up communication to the current Pope Francis on the same matter. The third link includes some of the speculative theories about where the Menorah and other Temple treasures may have been taken when the Roman Empire fell. As the Roman empire was declining, Rome was sacked by Germans, Goths and Vandals. If such a treasure was found by these invaders, it is logical to assume they would have taken it into their possession. The link mentions Carthage as one city to which the Menorah may have been transported. 

As detailed in my book series, Rome was sacked by The Vandals in 455 AD under their leader, Gaiseric. What is generally not appreciated is that Gaiseric and his Vandals sailed to Rome from the city of Carthage, which was then their stronghold. The Vandals sacked Rome and one historian is cited (in my book, Israel’s Tribes Today, p. 87) as stating that the Vandals took the Temple Menorah out of Rome and back to Carthage. The Vandals were actually Christians at that time so they would have surely appreciated the value of the Temple Menorah if they did, indeed, take custody of it. The third link’s mention that the Menorah was taken to Carthage is surely based on the fact that the Vandals based in Carthage would have brought such an important artifact back to Carthage with them after sacking Rome of its valuables. However, we do not have a definitive “chain of custody” concerning the Temple Menorah to know for sure where it is. It may be that the Vandals did not find all the treasures hidden in the catacombs under Rome and that the Menorah is still somewhere under Rome today–presumably in the custody of the Vatican.

It may be significant that this revelation about the Temple Menorah has been made at this time. If the Italian official is correct that the Menorah is in Rome, the Israelis will likely demand its return after the current war with Hamas is concluded. If the Temple Menorah and other Temple treasures are returned to the Israelis/Jews by the Vatican and/or the Italian government, the effect in Israel and among the world’s Judeo-Christian people will be electrifying! It will multiply the fervor for the building of a Third Temple in Jerusalem on the Temple Mount. Many outcomes are possible. This might happen as part of an overall Mideast Peace Agreement whereby the Jews begin building a Third Temple in Jerusalem, the Vatican is given a larger role in administering Christian sites in Jerusalem and Saudi Arabia and/or Egypt is given the role of administering Gaza and the “West Bank” after the current war started by Hamas against the Israelis is over.

My previous posts on the subject of a Third Temple being built in Jerusalem in the latter days can be found in the Archives of my Prophecy Blog. Various biblical, latter-day prophecies indicate/strongly infer that a Temple will exist or it will be in the process of being built when Jesus Christ returns to end this current age of mankind. Revelation 11:1-6 foretells that the Two Witnesses (two incredibly powerful, final prophets of God) will begin their ministry as the new Temple grounds are being “measured.” This language allows for the possibility that the Two Witnesses could be unleashed by God as the Temple grounds are being measured and prepared for actual construction. It may not be necessary for the Temple construction to be finished (or even formally begun) before the Two Witnesses arrive on the world scene and radically change the world’s geopolitics.

This development about a possible return of the Second Temple Menorah from Italy/the Vatican to the Israelis/Jews is something we should all watch closely!