By Henry Law
The Church is commended as beloved of God. Neighboring nations flock to it. It is a spring of refreshing joys.
1 . "His foundation is in the holy mountains."
The eye seems to rest on the Temple, the type of God's Church. It stands securely, for it is based on the noble hill of Zion. But what is the stability of the material fabric, compared to that of the spiritual edifice? Of the former it was said, Not one stone shall be left upon another. The latter is built upon the foundation of prophets and apostles, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone. The gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
2. "The Lord loves the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob."
Zion was the spot which the Lord chose and regarded with especial favor. So the Lord loves the Church, and every member of it. Happy is the man who can realize, 'Jesus loved me and gave Himself for me. He has loved me with an everlasting love; therefore with loving kindness He has drawn me.' The response follows, 'I love Him because He first loved me.' May our souls ever bathe in the ocean of Christ's unfathomable love!
3. "Glorious things are spoken of You, O city of God."
No eloquence can sufficiently commend the Church. What can be added to the assurance that she is recognized as the Bride, the Lamb's Wife? She was beloved by the Heavenly Bridegroom before time began, with a love which cannot know a change. She is endowed by Him with all He has, and with all He is. He has placed all the promises as a treasure in her hands. His angels watch around her. His providences guide and defend her path. His righteousness is her beauteous robe, rendering her fit to shine forever in the palace of the heavenly King. Her seat is prepared beside Him on His throne. It would exhaust all time to give a brief survey of the glories which adorn her.
4-6. I will record Egypt and Babylon among those who know me--also Philistia and Tyre, and even distant Ethiopia. They have all become citizens of Jerusalem! And it will be said of Jerusalem, "Everyone has become a citizen here." And the Most High will personally bless this city. When the Lord registers the nations, he will say, "This one has become a citizen of Jerusalem."
The influx of Gentile converts to the Church is here predicted. They shall come from countries which had been noted for their hostility. The Lord shall send forth His mighty Spirit. He shall soften their hearts and open their eyes, and enlighten their understanding, and lead them as willing captives to receive the Gospel yoke. They shall spring up as among the grass, as willows by the water-courses. One shall say, I am the Lord's; another shall call himself by the name of Jacob, and shall surname himself by the name of Israel. And when at last the Book of Life is opened, it shall be found that multitudes from all climates have been gathered into the Church of the living God.
7. "As well the singers as the players on instruments shall be there; all my springs are in you."
Joy and gladness shall be in her midst. She shall come to the Lord with thanksgiving, and the voice of melody. No element of happiness shall be absent. The Lord's presence near--His presence forevermore--shall be her inexhaustible ocean of delight. Sweetly it is said, 'In His presence is the fullness of joy; at God's right hand there are pleasures forevermore.' Let us now respond, 'Rejoice in the Lord always; and again I say, Rejoice. Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me bless His holy name.'
Deep and ever fresh are the springs from which we may here draw salvation. Let our tent be always pitched beside this overflowing well. Let us bless His holy name that we have been born again and adopted into the Church of the firstborn, whose names are written in heaven. Happy is the present portion; what will be the endless realization!