June 3 – Trip to the Holy Land – The Mount of Olives

DAY 22 – THE MOUNT OF OLIVES

Theme: Passion & Prophecy

Read Zechariah 14: 2-11

The view from the Mount of Olives provides a magnificent panorama of the Temple Mount and the Old City of Jerusalem. From the western slopes of this beautiful hillside, it’s easy to imagine the trail Jesus followed on that first Palm Sunday as He rode into Jerusalem on the foal of a donkey to the cries of “Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!”  (Luke 19:38 NIV).  This event introduced the last week before our Lord was crucified, often called, “Passion Week.”

As you walk down the mountain, you can also gaze across the Kidron Valley and see the only gate in the walls of the Old City that is closed today – the Eastern or Golden Gate. It has been sealed because it’s located just above a Muslim cemetery.

In AD 1540, the Eastern Gate was shut by order of Suleiman the Magnificent, who also rebuilt many of the current walls around the Old City. Many suggest that the Gate was closed to prevent the Messiah from entering since Jewish tradition suggests that the Messiah will pass through the Eastern Gate when He comes to rule. The Eastern Gate has remained sealed for almost 500 years.

This prominent mountain, therefore, also serves as a focal point for Bible prophecy. The Bible says that Jerusalem will become a target for all the nations of the world in the future. Yet God protects His people. “On that day the Lord will shield those who live in Jerusalem, so that the feeblest among them will be like David, and the house of David will be like God, like the angel of the Lord going before them. On that day I will set out to destroy all the nations that attack Jerusalem” (Zechariah 12:8-9 NIV).

Zechariah continues his commentary on how the Messiah settles the score on Jerusalem:. “On that day living water will flow out from Jerusalem, half of it east to the Dead Sea and half of it west to the Mediterranean Sea, in summer and in winter. The Lord will be king over the whole earth. On that day there will be one Lord, and his name the only name” (Zechariah 14:8-9 NIV).

This graphic scene unfolds right on the Mount of Olives! Imagine the cosmic upheaval that occurs because the Son of God comes in justice to rule and reign on this earth. The world has never experienced anything like it! Yet it will happen one day when Jesus returns to earth in power and glory.

Prayer of reflection:  Despite the global uncertainties today, thank you, Lord Jesus, that You will someday reign and create a time of great peace for this world.

Bob Fetterhoff

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