Sunday, May 20, 2012

It's Jerusalem Day!

Jerusalem Day (Yom Yerushalayim) is an Israeli national holiday commemorating the reunification of Jerusalem and the establishment of Israeli control over the Old City in June 1967.

Video and reporting from 1967:
"On June 7, 1967, Israeli military forces capped off the Six Day War with several remarkable feats, including re-capturing the Old City of Jerusalem from Jordan, who had won control of the area in 1948. From a JTA report bearing the dateline June 6, 1967: OLD CITY OF JERUSALEM IS LIBERATED Jerusalem, a city torn in two for 13 years was about to be reunited. Israeli forces surrounded the Jordan-held Old City of Jerusalem today and reportedly occupied most of the area. The Old City, the second capital of Jordan, is the site of some of the holiest places in the Jewish and Christian religions. Jordanian denial of the right of access for Jews to such holy places as the Wailing Wall has been a bone of contention ever since Israel was established."

And surely it still is, even more than it was 45 years ago. This is prophesied:

"Behold, I am about to make Jerusalem a cup of staggering to all the surrounding peoples. The siege of Jerusalem will also be against Judah. On that day I will make Jerusalem a heavy stone for all the peoples. All who lift it will surely hurt themselves. And all the nations of the earth will gather against it." (Zechariah 12:2-3).

Barnes Notes explains the Zechariah verse:

"The image of the "cup" is mostly of God's displeasure, which is given to His own people, and then, His judgment of chastisement being exceeded, given in turn to those who had been the instruments of giving it. Thus, Isaiah speaks of "the cup of trembling." Thou, "Jerusalem, hast drunk the dregs of the cup of trembling, hast wrung them out. Therefore hear thou this, thou afflicted and drunken but not with wine. Thus saith thy Lord, the Lord, and thy God that pleadeth the cause of His people, Behold, I have taken out of thine hand the cup of trembling, the dregs of the cup of My fury; thou shalt no more drink it again: but I will put it into the hand of them that afflict thee." (Isaiah 51:17, Isaiah 51:21-23)."

As we are told in scripture, today in the world not everyone is in agreement with Jerusalem as the eternal capital, however. Headline from this morning from the Lebanon Daily Star: "Israel marks 45 yrs since occupation of E. Jerusalem".

Here are some demographic facts about Jerusalem if you want to gain an overall numerical view of the city.

A great sermon to read or listen to from John MacArthur is "The Future Glory of Jerusalem." In the sermon, he says, "This final chapter hasn't been written. It's final hero hasn't arrived yet, but He will. For about 2,000 years now the Jews have been going to the Wailing Wall at one point or another to pray for the peace of Jerusalem, to plead with God to send a deliverer and break Gentile power, and I imagine if you were to go up to the wall, and you wouldn't dare do this, and pull out of the cracks the little notes that the Orthodox stick in the cracks and read them, they would say O God for the peace of Jerusalem. And God will answer. Jerusalem has not only been the center of redemptive history it will be the center of redemptive consummation in the great future that God has planned. It is, incidentally, still to be the habitation of God. It is the only intended capitol for the kingdom and as Melchizedek was its first king so one after the order of Melchizedek will be its last king, but until then the Bible says Jerusalem will be trodden down by the Gentiles."

So Jerusalem is NOT a city forsaken. His promises regarding His city and His people are NOT set aside! It is an eternal city, and someday when its shame and indignation has passed, when it has been purified, the Shekinah glory will reside there. Ezekiel 37:26 says

"I will make a covenant of peace with them and it will be an everlasting covenant and I will place them and multiply them and set My sanctuary in the midst of them forever, My tabernacle shall also be with them, ye I will be their God, they shall be My people, and the nations shall know that I the Lord do sanctify Israel and my sanctuary shall be in the midst of them forevermore."

The LORD is good and His promises endure forever!

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