Titus must have thought he had secured a rare prize in the golden candlestick. He caused it to be put in a very conspicuous place in his triumphal procession to Rome. Then he had it put in a place of honor in the temple of Peace, where it remained safely for a period of four centuries.
In A. D. 455, Rome was conquered by the Vandals under their king, Genseric. He transferred the golden candlestick to Carthage. It remained there for 83 years.
After this time, Rome again conquered the Vandals and the golden candlestick was brought back into their possession of honor. Constantinople was the victorious general of the then eastern capital of the empire. The Emperor Justinian then generously restored the precious candlestick to Jerusalem, where it found a resting-place in the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. After many years away, the precious candlestick was finally restored to its home.
Nobody knows where the candlestick is today. It could be possible that it may still be hidden in some secret corner of the church, but more probably was stolen by the Persians when the city was stormed by them in A.D. 614, or some subsequent conqueror of the Holy City.
There is no doubt that the Tabernacle Candlestick was the one that was taken in the triumphal procession to Rome, but after that there were several other candlesticks that were made over time. The following are the sacred candlesticks that were used in the sanctuary:
The Tabernacle Candlestick – After its day of service was over, it was stored as a relic in Solomon’s Temple ( I Kings 8: 4; 2 Chronicles 5:5)
The Ten Candlesticks Made For Solomon’s Temple – Five of them stood on the right hand, and five on the left, of the Holy Place. They were cut into pieces and carried by Nebuchadnezzar to Babylon (2 Kings 24: 13-15) The tabernacle candlestick, the tabernacle itself, and its other holy vessels are not mentioned as included in the temple treasures which Nebuchadnezzar took away. They may have escaped his notice by being stowed away in some out-of-the-way chamber that had been closed off. Even if he had taken them, though, they would not have been lost forever to the Jews. Everything that was taken to Babylon was restored by Cyrus to the temple in Ezra 5: 14-15. Though they were cut into pieces, they were not so destroyed as to render them incapable of being restored to their original condition.
The Ten Candlesticks Again Taken Away From The Temple – In the year 170 B. C., Antiochus Epiphanes took away the golden vessels and other treasures of the temple. No mention is made of the tabernacle and its holy vessels, so they may have escaped being taken away.
The Candlestick Presented To The Temple By Judas Maccabeus – In the year 165 B. C. Judas Maccabeus expelled the Syrians and restored the sanctuary. He furnished the temple with new and holy vessels according to the writings of the Maccabees. Instead of being ten candlesticks as in Solomon’s Temple, there was just one.
The Candlestick or Candlesticks in Herod’s Temple – There is no mention that Herod made any golden vessels for the temple that he built, but since everything else was new, he probably did make all the vessels and utensils needed for sacrifice new. It’s very possible that the priests may have known where the original candlestick was and used it in Herod’s Temple.