Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Weekly Devotion: The Controversy of Zion

“For it is the day of the LORD's vengeance, and the year of recompences for the controversy of Zion.” Isaiah 34:8

Although it may not be initially evident, many students of the Bible have sited this verse as the theme verse of the entire Bible! “The controversy of Zion” has a dual meaning though, the first of which is obvious if you watch the news with any regularity. Jerusalem is called Zion often times because Mount Zion is the largest of seven mountains upon which Jerusalem is built. This city is beautifully situated and naturally fortified by cliffs on three sides and is only easily accessible from the North.

“Beautiful for situation, the joy of the whole earth, is mount Zion, on the sides of the north, the city of the great King.” Psalm 48:2

To date there have been some 27 sieges against Jerusalem from its enemies who have trodden it down through the ages. The earliest known occupants of Jerusalem from which it is thought that Jerusalem received its name, are the Jebusites (Joshua 15:63), whose name means, “He shall be trodden down”. This is highly significant in light of Jesus’ prophesy concerning Jerusalem.

“And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.” Luke 21:24

This prophesy seems to have been fulfilled in the year 1967 when, for the first time in nearly 2500 years, Jews began governing Jerusalem rather than the “gentiles” (non Jews) after winning the six-day war! However, the reason for “the controversy of Zion”, I believe, is because of the second meaning of Zion which refers to “heavenly Jerusalem” / Zion (Sion in the Greek), “the city of the living God”.

“But ye are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem…” Hebrews 12:22

The name “Jerusalem” means “Dual / double peace shall be taught”, so let’s consider both earthly and heavenly Jerusalem. Both are built on Mount Zion with walls, gates, doors, a temple, and house God’s people. Friend, Jesus is that door of entrance into Zion (John 10:9) and herein lies the controversy. You see, until the Prince of peace (Jesus) returns to Jerusalem through the eastern gate (Ezekiel 43:1, 2), there will be no true peace. The same is true of your soul; “controversy” will continue until you surrender your life to Jesus and join the ranks of people like Abraham, who, by faith, looked for that heavenly “city” where Jesus went to prepare us a place (John 14:1-3).

“For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God… wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city. Hebrews 11:10, 16b

It now becomes apparent how “the controversy of Zion”, God’s “holy hill” (Psalm 15:1) is the theme of the Bible and exciting to think that “the times of the Gentiles” has been fulfilled. The day of the Lord draweth nigh, when Jesus “recompences” the “controversy” of both Zion’s, let’s all be ready…

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