blog meditation Psalms

Meditation Psalm 87

Of the Sons of Korah. A psalm. A song.

He has founded his city on the holy mountain.
The Lord loves the gates of Zion
    more than all the other dwellings of Jacob.

Glorious things are said of you,
    city of God:
‘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.”’
Indeed, of Zion it will be said,
    ‘This one and that one were born in her,
    and the Most High himself will establish her.’
The Lord will write in the register of the peoples:
    ‘This one was born in Zion.’

As they make music they will sing,
    ‘All my fountains are in you.’

(Ps. 87:1-7 NIV)

Glorious things of thee are spoken

The city of God, the holy mountain, Zion, are terms used to describe the presence of God with His people. The Lord appointed the place where He would meet with His people. It was a divine act to found His city on the holy mountain. The mountain became holy when God came to dwell on the mountain. The city’s greatness is derived from the fact that it was founded by God. The gates of Zion are a special place for the Lord more than all the dwellings throughout the land. Glorious things are said of the city of God, the dwelling place of the Most High God. God is glorious in His presence and He has provided a righteous means of approach for the people of God. The way of atonement is glorious – ultimately it points to the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the place of residence that God chooses for His presence is the gathering of His people in the name of Jesus Christ.

The Psalmist lists a number of nations that were oppressive to His people. Rahab is a reference to Egypt (to Egypt, whose help is utterly useless. Therefore I call her Rahab the Do-Nothing. (Isa. 30:7 NIV)). The other names represent powers that dominated a good part of the history of the OT people of God. The grace and mercy of God is seen in that these nations will be blessed. It is the fulfilment of the promise made to Abraham, that through him all nations of the earth would be blessed. Those out of the nations who are blessed are those who will acknowledge the Lord. On their confession of faith, they will be acknowledged to have been born in Zion. The extent of God’s people extends to all countries both near and far. With the coming of Christ into the world this Psalm starts to make sense. As many of the OT believers read this Psalm there would be a strong sense of dissonance, because the historical reality did not match what this Psalm was saying. It might even create something of Jonah’s attitude to Nineveh in the people.

It is God who decides the citizens of the Kingdom. The people of God in the international Church of Jesus Christ will acknowledge that God is our fountain of life, God is our source of joy.

Lord we thank You for the Great Commission to go into all the world and preach the Gospel. We thank You that the Gospel travelled into this part of the world and generations of people were brought into Your Kingdom. Lord, as the Gospel continues to spread across the world, we pray that many will come and sit down in Your Kingdom. Lord we thank You for those nations where there is great response to the Gospel. Lord of the harvest, we have a multi-ethnic population in this nation, come and work in the hearts of the people in this nation and build up the Church of Jesus Christ because we ask this in the name of our Saviour. Amen