THE HOLY CITY

“They will call you ‘The City of the Lord’, ‘Zion, the City of Israel’s Holy God’”.

Isa 60:14 GNB

There is something wonderful about Jerusalem. Three of the world’s great religions regard it as their holy city, and pilgrims pour in from all over the world. The Moslems captured it centuries ago and built the gold-domed cap on top of what had earlier been the Jewish temple. Inside this central building, known as the “Dome of the Rock” stands a huge rock upon which, tradition holds that Abraham nearly sacrificed his son, Isaac. In the “Church of the Holy Sepulchre” both the crucifixion of Jesus and his resurrection took place, again according to tradition. A little way away there is a garden called the Garden Tomb, where some claim Jesus was both crucified and rose again – an argument rages about this.

Jerusalem was founded approximately 1000 B.C. by King David who was looking for a place to build his fortress. David’s tomb is in the city, the part that is today called Zion. It is doubtful if any city in the world has so much history woven into its story.

For Christians the miracle of Jerusalem is that Jesus died and rose again there. And he became human, dwelt on earth, died and rose again “for us men and for our salvation”. For us it is “Christ’s City”. It is also where God poured out his Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost – the event that sent Christian apostles round the Eastern Mediterranean preaching the gospel and converting Gentiles to faith in Christ. One visitor said after his first trip to the city, “Now it (the Christian faith) all makes sense”. It does make sense – whether you go to Jerusalem or not.

PRAYER THOUGHT

Lord, let your holy city be a place of peace for all humanity.