1His foundation is in the holy mountains.
2The LORD loveth the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob.
3Glorious things are spoken of thee, O city of God. Selah.
Glorious Things Are Spoken
Because the Psalms are not placed in chronological order, it is not always easy to understand the significance of a particular Psalm. This is certainly true of Psalm 87. Written by the sons of Korah years after the reigns of David and Solomon, the situation in Israel is much different. The Israelites had returned from captivity, the tabernacle had been rebuilt, but their numbers were quite small in comparison to earlier days.
Encouraging the people to return to their First Love, the psalmist is speaking of a future time when the Lord will reign from the gates of Zion. The city of Zion, more beautiful than any city they had ever known, even more beautiful than they could hardly imagine, would rise in splendor and majesty at the foot of the holy mountains. All peoples of the earth would exclaim over its remarkable state, for, indeed, the blessing of God would be upon the city. The words upon the lips of all people would be, "Glorious things are spoken of thee, O city of God."
When the sons of Korah wrote this Psalm, the church of God was certainly at a low point; it was hard to imagine that a time would ever come when such greatness would encompass God's church. Having the advantage of centuries of time passing since this particular Psalm was written, we have seen God's amazing protection and the resultant growth of God's church. Though suffering much persecution throughout the ages, God's people, by His grace alone, have grown and remained strong. Interestingly enough, Christianity seems to have spread more prolifically during times of suffering and persecution, while it seems to have languished during times of comfort and prosperity.
Though written primarily for the Jewish people, Psalm 87 is a great encouragement to all of the people of God. As we see such wanton disregard for the things of God in our day, this Psalm reminds us that it will not always be so. God still reigns supreme, and among the saints of God it can still be said, Glorious things are spoken of thee, O city of God.
What is the lesson in this Psalm for Christians in the 21st century? It is so important that God's people do not become caught up in the rise of the worship of man, which is so predominant in our culture. The theme for this century, worldwide, seems to be, "Glorious things are spoken of thee, o man!" As Christians, let us be careful to set our heart affections upon Christ, alone.
Second, God's people need to remember that they have a God-ordained purpose to fulfill during their time upon this earth. Though it is not wrong to enjoy the benefits available during this time of worldwide prosperity, the heart of the Christian must not be consumed by the love of this world. Our focus needs to be upon Christ, and the work He has for each one of us to do.
Third, as we see an increased animosity against Christians, we need to remember that we serve the Lord Jesus Christ. If He should choose to take us through times of persecution, and/or if we seem to face one difficulty after another when everyone around us seems to be living a life of ease, let us remember Psalm 87. We have a future, bright and eternal, when all the world will say, Glorious things are spoken of thee, O city of God.
God Bless You,