Psalm 122: 1-2, 3-4, 4-5, 6-7, 8-9 (Read)
“I rejoiced when they said to me,
'Let us go up to the house of the Lord.”
This Sunday we revisit this Psalm that
sings of a spiritual journey to the house
of the Lord, the holy city of Jerusalem.
In our 1st reading the prophet Isaiah also
speaks about a journey to Zion, to the house
of God, His holy mountain. We too are called
to make that same journey, that we may walk
in His paths. Our psalmist says, “Our feet
are standing within your gates, Jerusalem.”
But why are we called to make that journey?
Firstly, we stand with the Israelites who already
dream of gathering together at some future time.
But secondly, for us as Christians the psalm is a
vision of the end times, when our spiritual
pilgrimage leads us from earth to heaven.
Our psalmist says we are called to give thanks
to the name of the Lord, but we note also there
are set up judgment seats at our destination.
For our journey ends where God resides, His
kingdom of heaven, and we must be prepared
to be in His presence. St Paul in our 2nd reading
cautions us to throw off the works of darkness,
and to put on the armor of light, to conduct
ourselves properly as in the day, to put on the
Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus himself says in this
Sunday's Gospel (Matthew 24:44), “You must
be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect,
the Son of Man will come.”
Jerusalem in the Psalm symbolizes for us the
end of our journey, being present with the Lord.
This is what God has planned for His people:
When we arrive in God's holy city, the kingdom
of God will come to us in its fullness, and we will
live in peace. As the psalmist tells us, we will be
filled with a desire to say, “I will pray for your good,”
“Peace be within you.”
Discussion Questions for Reflection
1. As we begin a new season of Advent, the Psalm
encourages us to be prepared for the time when we
will be in God's kingdom and He will be present to us.
Speak about what you are doing to prepare yourself
to be in God's holy city.
2. As we prepare to receive the Prince of Peace within
our midst, our psalmist asks us to pray for peace within
the walls of the holy city and within ourselves. What are
you doing to ensure that you have peace within you and
how are you conveying your peace to others around you?