Zion is the city of the living God. It is the city which Abraham in Hebrews 11 was looking for; a city whose builder and maker is God!
Hebrews 11:8-9 : “By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went. By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise:”
These verses of Scripture imply that Abraham sojourned in the promised land, which means he actually got to the promised land. Yet he looked for a city which had foundations, whose builder and maker is God. How come he got to the land of promise and sojourned there, and was looking for a city? It means that the promised land, the city he was looking for, was beyond the physical land on which he stood.
Hebrews 12:18-19; 22-23: “For ye are not come unto the mount that might be touched, and that burned with fire, nor unto blackness, and darkness, and tempest, And the sound of a trumpet, and the voice of words; which voice they that heard intreated that the word should not be spoken to them any more…But ye are come unto mount Zion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels, To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect,"
Abraham was a prophet of God (Genesis 20:7), so, he had enough spiritual insight to know that Zion was the promised land, the city which he sought. The physical land of Canaan only typified it. To the children of Israel in the Old Testament, Canaan was the land of promise, the land of their inheritance; Canaan was their physical Zion. But it was not for Canaan the fathers of faith looked (Hebrews 11:13 - 16). They looked forward to the Church of Christ, which Israel, the Church in the wilderness, typified. The ‘promised land’ in which they sojourned was a type, a shadow of the real promised land. Canaan was an allegory of this city; the city that has foundations, whose builder and maker is God. Zion is the city of the living God!
A Two-fold Application
Psalm 102:13-18: “Thou shalt arise, and have mercy upon Zion: for the time to favour her, yea, the set time, is come. For thy servants take pleasure in her stones, and favour the dust thereof. So the heathen shall fear the name of the Lord, and all the kings of the earth thy glory. When the Lord shall build up Zion, he shall appear in his glory. He will regard the prayer of the destitute, and not despise their prayer. This shall be written for the generation to come: and the people which shall be created shall praise the Lord.”
In Scripture, Zion either has a direct application to the Church or a two-fold application to Israel and the Church. “When the Lord shall build up Zion, he shall appear in his glory… and the people which shall be created shall praise the Lord” (Psalm 102:16,18). When Scripture talks about “the people which shall be created” it refers to the new creature. The Lord building up Zion refers to the Lord building the Church, just as Jesus said in Matthew 16:18, “…I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”
Jesus is the One building the Church and when He builds up the Church, which is Zion, He shall appear in His glory. Hence, this Scripture has a double application: for the present, and for the future when Jesus returns. If it were for the future alone (after we’ve gone to Heaven), then the Bible would not talk of standing against the gates of hell because there are no gates of hell in Heaven. The gates of hell refer to the powers, authorities and the works of darkness.
Jesus is building up His Church today; He is doing something in His Church today. It is so vital that you have an understanding of God’s work in the present hour, that is, His work in your life and in the Church as His body. When you do, you can move with Him and flow together with Him at the same pace.
A Set Time to Favour Zion
Psalm 102:13-14, 16-18: “Thou shalt arise, and have mercy upon Zion: for the time to favour her, yea, the set time, is come. For thy servants take pleasure in her stones, and favour the dust thereof… When the Lord shall build up Zion, he shall appear in his glory. He will regard the prayer of the destitute, and not despise their prayer. This shall be written for the generation to come: and the people which shall be created shall praise the Lord.”
There is a set time to favour Zion and the time is NOW. The Bible says in 2 Corinthians 6:2, “(For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.)” Now is the set time to manifest God’s favour in Zion, not tomorrow, not next year not when we get to heaven but NOW! it’s a present hour reality!
Now Are We in Zion!
Psalm 87:1-7: “His foundation is in the holy mountains. The Lord loveth the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob. Glorious things are spoken of thee, O city of God. Selah. I will make mention of Rahab and Babylon to them that know me: behold Philistia, and Tyre, with Ethiopia; this man was born there. And of Zion it shall be said, This and that man was born in her: and the highest himself shall establish her. The Lord shall count, when he writeth up the people, that this man was born there. Selah. As well the singers as the players on instruments shall be there: all my springs are in thee.”
This Scripture perfectly describes Zion and the kind of people that would be in it. What kind of people are there in Zion? Happy people! Happy people are born in Zion and glorious things are spoken of them. We know that Zion is the city of the living God, for we are called unto Mount Zion.
Hebrew 12:23-24: “To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel.”
We’re in Zion now; the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem and the assembly of saints. We’re not trying to get to Mount Zion, neither are we getting to Mount Zion after the rapture. No! We’re already there now – today - and it is a present hour reality. When you were born again, you were born into Zion! That’s where your heavenly Father dwells; He lives in Zion and you became a citizen of Zion when you were born again!
Have you ever found out that the glorious things are spoken concerning you? Psalm 87:2-3 says, “The Lord loveth the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob. Glorious things are spoken of thee, O city of God...” Hallelujah! Glorious things, not sad things, depressing things, destructive things or discouraging things, but glorious things are spoken of you! These glorious things produce strength in your inner man, in your spirit.
You’ve got to wake up to the consciousness of the glorious life to which you’ve been called in Zion. This consciousness will cause you to experience His glory as revealed in the Word of God.