Standing Within Her Gates

A Song of Ascents. Of David. I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the LORD!”

Our feet have been standing within your gates, O Jerusalem! Jerusalem—built as a city that is bound firmly together, to which the tribes go up, the tribes of the LORD, as was decreed for Israel, to give thanks to the name of the LORD. There thrones for judgment were set, the thrones of the house of David. Pray for the peace of Jerusalem! “May they be secure who love you! Peace be within your walls and security within your towers!” For my brothers and companions’ sake I will say, “Peace be within you!” For the sake of the house of the LORD our God, I will seek your good. (Psa 122:1-9)

This psalm stirs in me a longing to assemble with the saints in God’s house. For a variety of reasons, some of us may still attend church remotely. And while there are many good online ministries out there and many churches live streaming their morning services, it’s just not the same.

God means for us to be in fellowship together, for our mutual edification and encouragement.

 “And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near. “ Heb 10:24-25

Although I’ve recently returned to an “in-person” church service, my heart was no less glad when I was worshiping God from home. There was an eagerness to tune into the next message. My spirit soared with David’s as I read the words, “Let us go to the house of the Lord!”

Would that my spirit always longs for the things of God.

“Jerusalem – built as a city that is bound firmly together.” There is a beautiful picture here of what the church, the people of the church, are to look like. Jerusalem itself is a beautiful city. Built uniformly with the houses strengthening and supporting one another. Just as we, Believers, are meant to do.

When I pray for the peace of Jerusalem, I think of not only the physical city and the nation of Israel, but of God’s church, His people, all over the world. 

There is much that comes against us. Against Israel. Against us personally, and against the church. But evil cannot stand against the prayers of the saints. (Matt 16:18)

“There thrones for judgment were set, the thrones of the house of David.” Here we are reminded that Jerusalem was, and will again be, a royal city. 

As such, Jerusalem reminds us that God looks after our civil interests as well as our spiritual ones. We can trust that justice will be administered.  And when justice is not administered as it ought to be in this world, may we be reminded that we are a royal priesthood. We take comfort in the fact that in the end, God’s justice will be, and has been served.

“But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for His own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.” 1Pe_2:9 

We’ll be there one day, standing within her gates on streets of gold. But you know, it’s not the streets of gold or pearly gates that stir my soul. It’s the thought of standing in His presence, with eyes that finally see, and a heart that will finally grasp how deep and how high is the love of Christ Jesus, our Lord.

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