1 He has founded his city on the holy mountain.
2 The Lord loves the gates of Zion
more than all the other dwellings of Jacob.
3 Glorious things are said of you,
city of God:
4 “I will record Rahab and Babylon
among those who acknowledge me—
Philistia too, and Tyre, along with Cush—
and will say, ‘This one was born in Zion.’”
5 Indeed, of Zion it will be said,
“This one and that one were born in her,
and the Most High himself will establish her.”
6 The Lord will write in the register of the peoples:
“This one was born in Zion.”
7 As they make music they will sing,
“All my fountains are in you.”
What is striking in this psalm is the multinational picture it presents of Zion. Zion is not just the Israelite city of Jerusalem. It is a vision of the fulfillment of God’s mission. And the blessings of that mission are not just for Jews born in Israel, but all people who are born into a new relationship with God.
I find this a timely and hopeful picture in our troubled and divided world today. The psalmist sees a united kingdom of God that includes people from Iraq (Babylon), the Palestinians from the Gaza strip (Philistia), Lebanon (Tyre) as well as people from Ethiopia and Sudan (Cush). What matters before God is not our physical nationality but rather our spiritual nationality. What matters is not where we were born, but rather whether we are born into God’s covenant.
So my prayer today is for the mission of God in our troubled world. I pray for the efforts of courageous Christians, living their faith and sharing their faith, in parts of the world where Christians face opposition. And I pray for the coming of the day when the vision of this psalm will be realized.
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