The city of God
1 The Lord is great.
He deserves that people praise him
in the city of our God,
on his holy mountain.
2 That place is high up and it is beautiful.
It brings joy to the whole world.
Mount Zion is the city of the great King.
It is where the true God lives.
48:2The holy mountain is Mount Zion, where they built the temple. It was the home of Israel's true God, as other nations thought about Zaphon mountain. That was where other nations thought that their gods came down to the earth. The writer is saying that Jerusalem is the real Zaphon, where the Lord lives.
3 God is there in its strong places
and he keeps the city safe.
4 Look! There are kings of other nations
who join together to attack our city.
5 But when they come near and they see it,
they are very surprised.
It frightens them so much
that they quickly run away!
6 They cannot stop themselves shaking,
like a woman who is giving birth to a baby!
7 You push them away,
like an east wind that destroys great ships.
8 We had heard about the great things that God has done.
Now we have seen them for ourselves,
here in the city of the Lord Almighty,
the city of our God.
It is God who keeps the city safe for ever!
9 When we are in your temple, God,
we think about your faithful love.
10 You are famous all over the world,
so that people praise you as you deserve.
You are powerful
and you rule with justice.
11 Because you judge people in a right way,
Mount Zion and all the towns of Judah will be happy.
12 Walk all round Zion and look at it.
Count the towers.
13 Look at its strong buildings and its strong walls.
Then you will be able to describe it to your children.
48:13Verses 9-13: The writer tells the people to remember what God has done. They should look at all the places that God had made safe. Then they could tell their children what had happened, and the places where it had happened. This would help their children to believe God and to obey him. The Bible teaches us that it is important to tell our children what God has done for us.
14 Yes, this is our God, who is with us for ever!
He will always be our guide.