Daniel 11:2-35; 1 John 3:7-24; Psalm 122:1-9; Proverbs 29:1
A Joyful Approach
“I was glad when they said to me “Let us go to the house of the Lord.”
Psalm 122 is a Song of Ascents where it refers to going up to the city of Jerusalem to pay honor and praise and thanks to the name of the Lord. I never understood why these Psalms were called Psalms of Ascent until I visited the city of Jerusalem. To approach the old walled city and the Temple Mount, you must first traverse a valley. Only then are you able to climb up to the city.
I can imagine the excitement and joy of the tribes of Israel as they approached the city in large caravans to celebrate the Feasts at the Temple. After weeks of hard and dangerous travel on foot, or by donkey or camel, they were finally entering the city of God. Their eyes would be lifted up, and the splendor of the Temple gleaming like a crown at the top of Jerusalem would have been a glorious sight.
No wonder the psalmist sings, “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem. May they prosper who love you. May peace be within your walls.” This prayer is still as relevant today as it was in the day of King David.
Hopefully we are as filled with awe today as we enter the house of God every Sunday. May we always be ready for a joyful approach into the presence of God. Let us pray that we have the same dedication to worship as those who made great sacrifices to travel to God’s city.
St. Peter’s Episcopal Church
Lake Mary, FL