07 October 2007
West Papua’s Gold
On Oct.3. 2007, – Hashanah Rabah, a 34-person delegation from West Papua presented a large amount of gold to be used in the building of the Holy Temple.
The delegation, including representatives of the nation’s government, explained that they study the Bible regularly and recently came upon a verse in Zecharia (6:16) reading “And the distant ones will come and build the Temple of G-d.” They discussed the passage and decided that their faith obligates them to fulfill the verse.
West Papua is in the southwestern Pacific Ocean, is rich in gold mines, so the delegation thought it natural to donate gold for the Holy Temple. The Holy Temple will be built in the place where the First and Second Temples once stood – on Jerusalem’s Temple Mount.
The group presented over two pounds of gold and a large sum of money to the Temple Institute which deals with advancing the building of the Temple. They requested that the gold be used to construct vessels for the Temple and that the funds be used by the institute for any purpose it sees fit. The institute has a fund set aside for exclusive use for the actual construction of the temple, as well as funds for building the vessels and engaging in educational projects. Rabbi Chaim Richman of the Temple Institute said that, in view of the Halakhic problems that could be caused by specifically consecrating money and gold for the Holy Temple, an escrow account was opened, as was a safe deposit box for all donations; both have been explicitly set aside for use in building the Temple, and will remain untouched until then.
The episode was emotional as it constituted the fulfillment of the words of the prophets that nations will come from afar to help build the House of G-d in Jerusalem. “There is no doubt that this is a sign that the rest of our prophets’ prophecies will soon be fulfilled as well.”
Delegation members said that although this is their first contribution for the Temple, it will certainly not be their last. “They said that in Papua there are fine trees that they hope to one day bring aboard a ship to Israel in order to be used in the building of the Holy Temple."