Today, Friday March 10
Pray for the Peace of Jerusalem
Psalm 122:1-9 A song of ascents. A Psalm of David
“I was glad when they said to me, "Let us go into the house of the LORD." Our feet have been standing Within your gates, O Jerusalem!
Jerusalem is built As a city that is compact together, Where the tribes go up, The tribes of the LORD, To the Testimony of Israel, To give thanks to the name of the LORD. For thrones are set there for judgment, The thrones of the house of David.
Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: "May they prosper who love you. Peace be within your walls, Prosperity within your palaces." For the sake of my brethren and companions, I will now say, "Peace be within you." Because of the house of the LORD our God I will seek your good.
Welcome back to Pastor’s Chat! Thank you so much for your patience these past two weeks while we were away on tour to the Holy Land with a wonderful group of 16 people. There was at least one person from each of the four churches I’ve been privileged to minister to as a pastor. We had a glorious experience as we went to the places where our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ lived and minister to the people during His thirty-three and half years on earth. At the end of my video chat today I’ve included a collage of pictures that highlight the last three days of our time in Jerusalem. Please watch it to the very end.
Psalm 122 was written by King David as one of his three “Pilgrim Psalms.” No doubt this Psalm was written after he had captured the city of Jerusalem from the Jebusites, built the City of David, and set up the Tent of Tabernacle on Mt. Moriah for the Ark of the Covenant. David hears the people as they voice their desire to go and worship in the house of the LORD and he is eager to join them.
In this Psalm we first see people with a “Heart for God” (vv. 1-2). The people that joined me on this trip had this same heart in seeking to worship the Lord. And now can say “Our feet have been standing within your gates, O Jerusalem”.
We also notice that the people in David’s time had a “Heart for Praise” (vv.3-5). The Lord had told His people that one day there would be a central place where they would worship (Ex. 23:14-19; Deut. 12:5-7, 11-14, 17-19; 14:23; 16:2, 16), and that place was Jerusalem. The Lord instructed David that the place on Mount Moriah where he had built the altar was to be the site for the temple (1 Chron. 21-22), and He also gave David the plans for the structure (1 Chron. 28).
His choice was a wise one, for not only was Mount Zion an almost impregnable citadel, but it was located on the border of Judah and Benjamin and helped to bind the northern and southern tribes together. King Saul was from Benjamin, and David was from Judah.
When the psalmist looked at the city, he thought of unity and security. Just as the stones of the walls and houses were "bound firmly together," so the people were bound together in their worship of the Lord and their respect for the throne. The church today already has spiritual unity (Eph. 4:1-6), but we must endeavor to maintain it and demonstrate it before a watching world (John 17:20-23). As for security, Jesus promised that the very forces of hell could not stand before the onward march of His church (Matt. 16:18).
But it was the praise of Jehovah that was central (v. 4). God had commanded that His people go to Jerusalem for the feasts of Passover, Pentecost, and Tabernacles (Ex. 23:14-19; John 4:20-21), and the people went as worshipers and not sightseers. Yes, there was much to see in Jerusalem, but giving thanks to the Lord was their most important task and their greatest privilege.
The third thing that David and the people had was a “Heart for Prayer and Peace” (vv. 6-9) that would produce “prosperity”. This prosperity mentioned in verse 6 does not refer to material wealth but primarily to the spiritual enrichment that comes to those who love God, His Son (born a Jew), His Word (a Jewish Book), and His chosen people!
Our awesome team truly experienced that these past two weeks and we will never be the same! Maybe one day you can join us on a trip to the Holy Land!