PSALM 87 AND THE CENSUS
Glorious things are said of you, city of God:
Indeed, of Zion it will be said,
“This one and that one were born in her,
and the Most High himself will establish her.”
The Lord will write in the register of the peoples:
“This one was born in Zion.” Psalm 87:3, 5-6
With census night approaching this Tuesday, my mind turned to Psalm 87, which tells of something like a census in the city of God. Jerusalem is the city which God placed at the centre of his plans to bless the world. So, the psalmist looked ahead to a time when the most coveted passport in the world would be one saying, “Place of birth: Zion”.
Our Australian system makes it possible for a foreign-born person to become an Australian citizen. Similarly, Christian believers become citizens of heaven, but even more than that, their birthplace is re-written: “born in Zion”, or as Jesus puts it in John 3:3, “born from above”. All of this depends on Jesus’ work for us on the Cross, and on the Spirit he has poured out on every believer.
I quite enjoy filling out my census form, and I am very grateful to be counted Australian, but it is even better to be a part of “the assembly of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven” (Hebrews 12:23).
Heavenly Father, thank you for your amazing grace to us, that all believers can be counted as born in the heavenly Jerusalem. Enable me to live this day as one born from above, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Rev Andrew Schmidt