Psalm 122:6 says, “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem.” The rest of the psalm tells us how. (Translation used is the NIV.)
v.1. I rejoiced with those who said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” God wants us to pray for Jerusalem with joy. The issues of our day concerning Jerusalem are serious. As a result, our prayers often take the form of tears and travail. But underlying those prayers, I urge you to set your vision on the glory of Yeshua’s restored house in His perfected city. In do so doing, your heart will rest in His joy. The joy of the Lord will keep your prayers for Jerusalem from becoming a burden too hard to bear. “Rejoice with Jerusalem and be glad for her, all you who love her; rejoice greatly with her, all you who mourn for her.” (Isaiah 66:10)
v. 2. Our feet are standing in your gates, O Jerusalem. In the Bible, gates represent authority. Pray for Jerusalem with the spiritual authority Messiah has delegated to you. If you abide in Him, your feet stand in the gates of heavenly Jerusalem—even if you do not live in the earthly city. Because your spirit can access heavenly realms, you can release the Word of God over earthly Jerusalem. (Ephesians 2:6, Matthew 18:18-20) So from the gates of Jerusalem above, prophetically decree the fullness of God’s promises for her restoration on earth. “Speak tenderly to Jerusalem and proclaim to her…” (Isaiah 40:2)
v. 3. Jerusalem is built like a city that is closely compacted together. The Hebrew word pronounced chavar and translated “compacted” means “joined in tight fellowship, in league with or united; secure and bound firmly together.” This reflects the glorious destiny of Jerusalem. Today, however, the holy city is characterized by violent contention between Muslims and Jews. In addition, there are sharply competing Jewish factions, mostly between ultra-religious extremists and those who identify as secular, but are often God-fearing, moral people. Tensions can run high here. Pray and proclaim Jerusalem’s destiny as a city closely compacted together in its positive, good, prophetic sense. “How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity. It is like precious oil on the head…” (Psalm 133:1-2)
v. 4. That is where the tribes go up, the tribes of the Lord, to praise the name of the Lord according to the statute given to Israel. The Hebrew word pronounced yadah and translated “to praise” means “to cast thanks, praise, worship or testimony of.” In our day, tribes from Israel and the nations have wonderfully begun coming to Jerusalem to praise, thank and testify to the name of YHVH. But the fulfillment of those tribes coming up after Yeshua returns will be unimaginably glorious! You and I are called to help birth this spectacular reality in prayer. “Give Him no rest until He establishes her and makes her the praise of all the earth.” (Isaiah 62:7)
v. 5. There the thrones for judgment stand, the thrones of the house of David. The phrase “thrones of the house of David” refers to Messianic judgments executed according to the Davidic Covenant. Ultimately, these judgments release righteousness and justice from Jerusalem into the earth. When righteousness and justice manifest in Jerusalem, all nations on earth will be blessed. Prayerfully decree God’s calling on Jerusalem: “You will be called City of Righteousness…Zion will be redeemed with justice.” (Isaiah 1:26-27)
v. 6. Pray for the peace of Jerusalem; may those who love you be secure. The Hebrew word translated “secure” also means “prosperous, abundant, peaceful, tranquil, happy, safe.” Be blessed as you rightly love Jerusalem!
v. 7. May there be peace within your walls and security within your citadels. This verse speaks of physical peace and quiet. Accordingly, pray for physical protection from Jerusalem’s enemies set against her through terror, evil political schemes, economic sanctions, witchcraft or any other means. “On that day the Lord will shield those who live in Jerusalem…I will set out to destroy all nations that attack Jerusalem.” (Zechariah 12:8-9)
v. 8. For the sake of my brothers and friends, I will say, “Peace be within you.” Pray for peace within the hearts of your brothers and friends who live here—including us! Say, in effect, “Peace be within you” by praying for the salvation of Jerusalemites in the name of Yeshua, the Prince of Peace. Pray specifically for the salvation of our governmental leaders and “all those in authority, that we may live peaceful…lives in all godliness.” (1 Timothy 2:1-4)
v. 9. For the sake of the house of the Lord our God, I will seek your prosperity [or good]. The “house of the Lord our God” refers to His holy temple on the Temple Mount. Psalm 122 closes with a reminder that our prayers for Jerusalem are not ultimately about the Jewish people, city or nation—important as those are. Our prayers are ultimately about the rule and reign of heaven on earth, the Kingdom of God, from His holy hill. They are about Yeshua’s abiding presence on earth and fulfillment of His heart’s desires. If your ultimate reason for praying for the peace of Jerusalem is your desire to see His heart rejoice, you will stay the course. You can be secure, prosperous, abundant, peaceful, tranquil, happy, and safe in Him this Jubilee year!