1 Of the Sons of Korah. A psalm. A song.
He has set his foundation on the holy mountain; 2 the LORD loves the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob.
3 Glorious things are said of you, O city of God: Selah
4 “I will record Rahab and Babylon among those who acknowledge me—Philistia too, and Tyre, along with Cush— and will say, ‘This one was born in Zion.’”
5 Indeed, of Zion it will be said, “This one and that one were born in her, and the Most High himself will establish her.”
6 The LORD will write in the register of the peoples: “This one was born in Zion.” Selah 7 As they make music they will sing, “All my fountains are in you.”
Psalm 87 – The blessings of Zion today
(Verses 1-2) This worship song to God focuses on ‘Zion’, Jerusalem’s poetic name, mainly used in considering matters of special spiritual value about Jerusalem. The temple built here, and surrounded by mountains, reminds us of God’s special presence with His people. His people meet to praise and worship Him here. Why does God love ‘the gates of Zion’ more than all other dwellings of the children of Israel (Jacob)? Gates signify protection—God wishes to protect their real worship of Him. Gates also imply access—God offers access to humble-hearted people who turn from sin and trust Him as their Lord. That access to Zion has allowed many people, including some Gentiles, to come and worship the Lord God Almighty. When you trust the Lord Jesus Christ personally as your Saviour, the Lord protects your spiritual life and your desire to know and worship Him. He also gives you access to worship of Him through Jesus’ shed blood, which washes every believer in Him from all sin. You will also rejoice to find people from many other nations who also trust and worship your Saviour and Lord.
(Verses 3-5) We are told to pause and think (‘Selah’) that Zion, this ‘city of God’, has ‘glorious things spoken’ about it. God is the God of glory. Jesus, the eternal Son of God, came from the Heaven’s glory to earth to be born to become our Saviour. Jesus bore our sins and their punishment when He died for us, in our place as our substitute, on the cross. Those who turn from their sins to receive Jesus in their hearts become ‘born again’. They are en route to spend eternity in Heaven’s glory. 1 Timothy 1:11 calls this amazing news ‘the glorious gospel of the blessed God’. ‘Rahab’, a traditional, ferocious monster, refers to Egypt, which with Babylon were Israel’s sworn enemies. Israel also has a history of conflict with three other named nations, Philistia, Tyre and Cush (Ethiopia). Their citizens will come to worship God in Zion! They will regard people born there as privileged. Christians want people from all nations to hear the gospel, come to Christ, and worship our one and only true and living God. Pray for ‘new births’ to change men and women of all nations, ages, races, and backgrounds as they are ‘born again’ in Christ, through the deep work of the Holy Spirit in their lives.
(Verses 6-7) God keeps a register of those ‘born in Zion.’ They will play music and sing in praise that ‘All my fountains are in You’. Water from a fountain (or spring) refreshes us, cleanses us, and satisfies our thirst. After death, and possessing saved souls and resurrected bodies, all who trust in Jesus Christ will live forever in ‘New Jerusalem’. It is Heaven come down to Earth. Jesus promises us His ‘living water’ will be there forever! The names of all trusting in Jesus ‘are written in the Lamb’s book of life’. (Jesus is that ‘Lamb’ of sacrifice.) Is your name written in that book? (Revelation 21:2; 3:12; 7:7; 21:27)