The temple must be rebuilt and the sacrifices reestablished on the Temple Mount before the return of Jesus the Messiah. The Temple in Israel plays a key role in Israel’s history and Daniel's 70th Week. In the history of Israel there have been two temples; First, the temple of Solomon was completed in 959 B.C. and destroyed in 586 B.C. by the Babylonians led by Nebuchadnezzar. (See 1 Chronicles 28, 2 Chronicles 3 and Daniel 1:1-2.) The second temple was built after the nation returned to Jerusalem around 520 B.C. This is the temple Christ came to, and is called Herod’s temple in the N.T. It was destroyed in 70 A.D. by General Titus and the Roman Legion. In Revelation 11 John is told to measure a future third temple. It will be rebuilt prior to the End Times, and it will be there so that Antichrist will declare himself to be God at the mid-point of Daniel's 70th Week. During this time, Antichrist will set up the seat of his empire in Jerusalem, and he and his followers will desecrate the rebuilt temple through the worship of Antichrist and an image of the beast (Abomination of Desolation).
Revelation 11:1-2 I (John) was given a reed like a measuring rod and was told, (by the mighty angel from Revelation Chapter 10) Go and measure (John’s act of measuring signifies God’s ownership as he surveys the temple area - but only the temple proper) the temple of God (Greek = hieron, the complete temple building) and the altar, (Greek = naos, the holy of holies, where the ark of the covenant resides) and count the worshipers there (the people who are worshipping in this temple). (The temple in Jerusalem will be rebuilt during the End Times. Here, the mighty angel from Ch. 10 is instructing John to literally measure the dimensions of the rebuilt temple. One measures when they are ready to build something.)
2 But exclude the outer court; do not measure it, because it has been given to the Gentiles. (The "outer court" is the court of the Gentiles and is probably a reference to the Dome of the Rock and the Al Aqsa mosques, which are holy sites for Muslims. Note that it is the proximity of Islamic holy sites to the temple grounds that has for so long kept the temple from being rebuilt) They (the Gentiles, and more specifically, the followers of Antichrist) will trample on the holy city (of Jerusalem) for 42 months. During the second half of Daniel's 70th Week, which lasts 3 1/2 years, or 42 months, the followers of Antichrist will abuse and dishonor the holy city of Jerusalem by allowing worship of false gods upon the very holy site God calls His house. Specifically, once the Abomination of Desolation occurs, the rebuilt temple will become a site of idol worship for Gentiles.
2 Thessalonians 2:3-4
3 Don't let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come until the rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness (Antichrist) is revealed, the man doomed to destruction.
4 He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshiped, so that he sets himself up (takes his seat) in God's temple, proclaiming himself to be God (greater than the God of Israel).
11 It (Antichrist) set itself up (magnified itself) to be as great as (equal to, or greater than) the Prince (the Commander, Jesus) of the host; it took away (removed) the daily sacrifice from him (, and the place of his sanctuary was brought low.
12 Because of rebellion, the host [of the saints, God's people] and the daily sacrifice were given over to it (Antichrist). It (Antichrist) prospered in everything it did, and truth was thrown to the ground.
Daniel 8 is the prophecy Paul was referring to in 2 Thess 2. In Daniel 8, the prophet Daniel set forth a dual prophecy of desolation in the temple. The first (near) prophecy was fulfilled by a Gentile ruler named Antiochus Epiphanies, a cruel Syrian king who in 168 B.C. plundered Jerusalem and murdered hundreds of Jews. Antiochus Epiphanies desecrated the temple by offering a pig – a dirty animal - upon the altar. Antiochus Epiphanies also had an image of himself placed in the holy of holies. The second (far) will be fulfilled by the Antichrist when he sets himself up as God, and removes the daily sacrifice in the rebuilt temple (the Abomination of Desolation).
25 He (Antichrist) will cause deceit to prosper, and he will consider himself superior (to the God of the temple). When they (the people of Israel) feel secure (there will be a false sense of security due to the Covenant of Death), he will destroy many and take his stand against the Prince of princes (Jesus). Yet he will be destroyed, but not by human power.
27 He (Antichrist) will confirm (make firm) a covenant (of death) with many (Jews) and for one 'seven.' (A 7-year period) In the middle of the 'seven' (the 7-year period) he (Antichrist) will put an end to sacrifice and offering. And on a wing [of the temple] he will set up an abomination that causes desolation, until the end that is decreed is poured out on him".
31 "His (Antichrist) armed forces will rise up to desecrate the temple fortress and will abolish the daily sacrifice. Then they will set up the abomination that causes desolation.
15 "So when you see standing in the holy place 'the abomination that causes desolation,' spoken of through the prophet Daniel--let the reader understand--