Several remains of Herod's stately temple have by recent explorations been brought to light. It had two courts, one intended for the Israelites only, and the other, a large outer court, called "the court of theGentiles," intended for the use of strangers of all nations.
Note: There not two courts in the original pattern (Solomon's Temple) This was added. (Prov.30:5) No doctrine can be based on this thought.
These two courts were separated by a low wall, as Josephus states, some 4 1/2 feet high, with thirteen openings. Along the top of this dividing wall, at regular intervals, were placed pillars bearing in Greek an inscription to the effect that no stranger was, on the pain of death, to pass from the court of the Gentiles into that of the Jews. At the entrance to a graveyard at the north-western angle of the Haram wall, a stone was discovered by M. Ganneau in 1871, built into the wall, bearing the following inscription in Greek capitals: "No stranger is to enter within the partition wall and enclosure around the sanctuary. Whoever is caught will be responsible to himself for his death, which will ensue."
Note: Herod's Temple was corrupting this Biblical pattern of (Num.3:38) that the stranger (those that are not of the family Levi) There were several examples of those who did violate this pattern (Uzzah, Uzziah, Aaron's two sons
There can be no doubt that the stone thus discovered was one of those originally placed on the boundary wall which separated the Jews from the Gentiles, of which Josephus speaks.
It is of importance to notice that the word rendered "sanctuary" in the inscription was used in a specific sense of the inner court, the court of the Israelites, and is the word rendered "temple" in Jhn 2:15 and Act 21:28, 29.
Note: When Jesus was associated with this Temple / did mistake this to be He sanctioned. Paul took a vow / wanted to get back in time for Pentecost (some read into this that he kept the typical Feasts not their reality. Jesus Paul were there because the people were there
When Paul speaks of the middle wall of partition (Eph 2:14), he probably makes allusion to this dividing wall.
Note: Why would the Holy Ghost inspire Paul to use the traditions / philosophy of men to teach about the blood of Christ
Within this partition wall stood the temple proper, consisting of, (1) the court of the women, 8 feet higher than the outer court; (2) 10 feet higher than this court was the court of Israel; (3) the court of the priests, again 3 feet higher; and lastly (4) the temple floor, 8 feet above that; thus in all 29 feet above the level of the outer court.
Note: There was no court for the women or for Israel. However the Priesthood did function in the Court and the Holy Place
The summit of Mount Moriah, on which the temple stood, is now occupied by the Haram esh-Sherif, i.e., "the sacred enclosure." This enclosure is about 1,500 feet from north to south, with a breadth of about 1,000 feet, covering in all a space of about 35 acres. About the centre of the enclosure is a raised platform, 16 feet above the surrounding space, and paved with large stone slabs, on which stands the Mohammedan mosque called Kubbet es-Sahkra i.e., the "Dome of the Rock," or the Mosque of Omar. This mosque covers the site of Solomon's temple. In the centre of the dome there is a bare, projecting rock, the highest part of Moriah (q.v.), measuring 60 feet by 40, standing 6 feet above the floor of the mosque, called the sahkra, i.e., "rock." Over this rock the altar of burnt-offerings stood. It was the threshing-floor of Araunah the Jebusite. The exact position on this "sacred enclosure" which the temple occupied has not been yet definitely ascertained. Some affirm that Herod's temple covered the site of Solomon's temple and palace, and in addition enclosed a square of 300 feet at the south-western angle. The temple courts thus are supposed to have occupied the southern portion of the "enclosure," forming in all a square of more than 900 feet. It is argued by others that Herod's temple occupied a square of 600 feet at the south-west of the "enclosure."