Summary: Psalm 48 - sermon by Gordon Curley. (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request – email: firstname.lastname@example.org)
(1). God and Their City (vs 1-3)
(2). God and Their Enemies (vs 4-7)
(3). God and Their Worship (vs 8-11)
(4). God and Their Future (vs 12-14)
• It's like the real estate agents' mantra: ‘location, location, location’.
• It's the number one rule in real estate.
• After all you can buy the right home but in the wrong location.
• And although you can change the structure by totally remodelling your home;
• Both inside and out - ordinarily, you cannot move it
• So remember before you shell out your hard earned cash;
• On a particular property,
• Remember the number one rule in real estate; ‘location, location, location’.
• When it comes to real estate people really do care where they live,
• The more striking the setting, the happier they are
• TRANSITION: In describing the city of God, Jerusalem.
• The psalmist asserts that its setting is absolutely perfect.
• This psalm sets out all the qualities of the city;
• A city where God has chosen to make his presence felt in a special way.
• Note: The emphasis in the psalm is on the Lord and Mount Zion.
• There are other psalms about Zion – they are 76; 84; 87; 122; and 132.
Question: What is meant by the name “Zion”?
• “Zion” is a place name often used as a synonym, a substitute for Jerusalem.
• The word “Zion” is first found in your Bibles in 2nd Samuel chapter 5 verse 7.
• Where we read:
• “Nevertheless, David captured the fortress of Zion--which is the City of David”
• “Zion,” was originally the name of an ancient Jebusite fortress in the city of Jerusalem.
• Zion was the hill on which the higher and more ancient part of the city was built,
• This fortress had been built on the highest point – the north east corner of the city.
• Over the years “Zion” came to stand not only for the fortress;
• But also for the surrounding city of Jerusalem in which the fortress stood.
You probably know that Jerusalem is a city built on four hills:
• “Zion” was the highest of the four hills;
• And in the Bible, Mount Zion is synonymous with Mount Moriah,
• The site of the binding of Isaac by Abraham.
• When Solomon built the temple in Jerusalem,
• “Zion” expanded in meaning to include the temple and the area surrounding it.
• And at the time of Jesus, it was occupied by Herod’s enormous temple.
• As time went by;
• The name “Zion” was eventually used not just as a name for the city of Jerusalem,
• It was used to refer the land of Judah,
• And it was also used to refer to the people of Israel as a whole!
• In parts of the Old Testament (i.e. Isaiah 60:14).
• The name “Zion” was used figuratively used of Israel as the people of God
• That meaning of the term “Zion” is continued over in the New Testament,
• Where Christians are also called the people of God.
• i.e. Peter refers to Christ as the Cornerstone of Zion (1 Peter chapter 2 verse 6).
“See, I lay a stone in Zion, a chosen and precious cornerstone,
and the one who trusts in Him will never be put to shame”
• IN SUMMARY:
• In the Psalms (and the Old Testament):
• “Zion” primarily refers to the City of Jerusalem. The city where God dwells.
• We should note that Jesus himself (Matthew chapter 5 verse 35).
• Referred to Jerusalem as, “The city of the Great King"."
• In the New Testament is refers to God's spiritual kingdom;
• That is in all true Christians God is king,
• God is dwelling by his Holy Spirit in all of his people.
This psalm deal with four important topics.
(1). God and Their City (vs 1-3).
“Great is the LORD, and most worthy of praise,
in the city of our God, his holy mountain.
2 Beautiful in its loftiness,
the joy of the whole earth,
like the heights of Zaphon is Mount Zion,
the city of the Great King.
3 God is in her citadels;
he has shown himself to be her fortress.”
• The Jewish peoples glory in Jerusalem;
• Was something more than merely patriotic feelings.
• i.e. it was altogether a different thing from say the Roman's pride in Rome.
• For the devout Jew, there was one thing, and one thing only, that made Zion glorious;
• This city was God abode.
• There may well have been other cities bigger in size;
• More secure against enemy attack,