Revelation 11:1-2 "And there was given me a reed like unto a rod: and the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of G-d, and the altar, and them that worship therein. But the court which is without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months." (KJV)
So far the events we have been reading about in the book of Revelation have been pretty sequential, one seal following another, one trumpet following another. John has been telling us what he has been seeing in his vision. But he needs to stop and say, "Mean while back at the ranch" There are other things going on at the same time as the seals are being opened and the trumpets are being blown that he needs to report. This is one of the BIG stumbling blocks in the study of Revelation.
John is told to measure 1) The Temple, 2) the alter and 3) the people
He is explicitly told not to measure the outer courtyard. Why? Because the outer court and all Jerusalem (The Holy City) will be given to the gentiles for 42 months (3 and 1/2 years).
The measuring rod used to measure the people, reminds us that no one measures up to G-d's standards.
The current dispute over the Temple Mount may be resolved by joint control of the Temple Mount. This is NOT an ideal solution. Many Bible Prophecy experts believe that the Temple will be rebuilt on the north end of the Temple Mount. Leaving the Dome of the Rock, etc in place, they would be in the outer courtyard of the Temple. Recent Archaeological evidence has shown that the Temple which stood in Y'shua's time did NOT stand where the "Dome of the Rock" now stands, but to the North of it on the Temple Mount. Although it would be FAR from the ideal situation it may be the one the Anti-Christ (Anti-Messiah) offers to bring peace to the region. The first day we, Darryl and Elaine, met we went to the Temple Mount together and sat in a little gazebo on the north west corner of the Temple Mount known as the "Dome of the Spirits", believed to be the former location of the "Holy of Holies". We discussed this very topic. Believe me, there is plenty of real estate up there to do this. Perhaps this is what is alluded to in these verses.
If you are interested in an excellent study on this topic, pick up the following books.
"Ready to Rebuild" by Thomas Ice and Randall Price
"In Search of Temple Treasures" by Randall Price
Both published by Harvest House Publishers.
This seems to be the first half of the tribulation period.
The Jewish people will offer their sacrifices for 3 and 1/2 years. At the mid point of the tribulation, the Anti-Messiah will enter the Temple and claim to be god!!!! The Jewish people with then flee from Jerusalem. (More on this later)
The letter for this chapter is "Kaf which means crowning accomplishment.