Text: Psalm 122

Israel is a country unlike any other in the world. Having received the oracles of God, she was meant to be a spiritual witness of the truth to the rest of the nations. When David became king, Jerusalem was chosen to be the place where the Tabernacle will abide. Thus, Jerusalem became God’s appointed centre of worship. The children of Israel were to gather there to worship the LORD in spirit and in truth (Jn. 4:24).

As a genuine child of God, David was most happy to worship God at His house in Jerusalem. But will he be alone? Not at all! There were also others like him, who relished meeting with their LORD at the appointed place of worship. They would make their pilgrimage from wherever they were residing, just to give thanks to the LORD on the holy day. Joy fills the heart of David to know that there were those who had the same spirit as him in the LORD. These were the ones who he regarded as his “brethren and companions”. They were his brethren and companions not because of blood relation, but for the same love which they have for the LORD. Jerusalem was a compact city not just because of the closely-knit buildings, but because the people were united in spirit to glorify the LORD.

Who then are our brethren and companions on this earth? Is it not our fel-low pilgrims who are journeying to the celestial city of our Lord? We are not alone.

Thus, consider the account of our LORD in Mark 3:31-35:

“There came then his brethren and his mother, and, standing without, sent unto him, calling him. And the multitude sat about him, and they said unto him, Behold, thy mother and thy brethren without seek for thee. And he answered them, saying, Who is my mother, or my brethren? And he looked round about on them which sat about him, and said, Behold my mother and my brethren! For whosoever shall do the will of God, the same is my brother, and my sister, and mother.”

In today’s context, Christians gather at their local churches to worship the Lord. We love our local churches because we love the Lord and our fellow pilgrims. Our desire is for the LORD to be glorified in our common confession. God will also bless those who love this unity in the truth. Commenting on verse 6, Spurgeon rightly observes that “God loves those who love his Church, and love his cause, and he rewards them with pros-perity, as much of earthly prosperity as they can bear, and prosperity to their souls beyond measure.” Do you therefore find great joy to see your fellow brethren every Lord’s Day in church? Do you love the church and the brethren in truth?

The reverse is also true, that those who hate God and His work will never prosper. Thus, there is a Jewish proverb which says that none ever took a stone out of the Temple without dust flying into his eyes! Let us therefore not be a hindrance to God and His work.

In his love for God and the brethren, David prayed that Jerusalem may prosper, so that this beautiful unity and witness may be preserved. Similarly, if we love God and His kingdom, we should labour in prayer for the church. One such opportunity to do so would be the church prayer meeting. Hope to see you there!

Lovingly in Christ,
Pastor Clement Chew

Andrew Barnes on Psalm 122:6 – How will God prosper the Pilgrim?
“They shall prosper that love thee. The word “prosper” conveys an idea which is not in the original. The Hebrew word means to be secure, tranquil, at rest, spoken especially of one who enjoys quiet prosperity: … The essential idea is that of quietness or rest; and the meaning here is, that those who love Zion will have peace; or, that the tendency of that love is to produce peace. See Romans 5:1. The prayer was for “peace”; the thought in connexion with that was naturally that those who loved Zion would have peace. It is indeed true, in general, that they who love Zion, or who serve God, will “prosper”; but that is not the truth taught here. The idea is that they will have peace: — peace with God; peace in their own consciences; peace in the prospect of death and of the future world; peace amidst the storms and tempests of life; peace in death, in the grave, and for ever.”