It’s a pretty common cliche to say, “It’s not the destination, it’s the journey that matters.” Not to an Israelite. To an ancient Israelite, the journey was important, but so was the destination. In their case, and with Psalms 120-134 in mind, the destination wasn’t just important, it was central. The destination for an Israelite singing these Psalms was Jerusalem. Jerusalem wasn’t just any city, it was the center of their nation. The Temple was there. God was there. Justice and Mercy were there. Jerusalem provided a place where Israel could “come home” and remember who God was and who they were. It gave them a place to re-center and re-contexualize their lives so they could remember what was most real.
That need hasn’t gone away. We still need a place to which we can come regularly to re-center, and re-contextualize our lives so that when we go their to worship, we are, like Israel, coming home. Listen in as we wrestle with how Psalm 122 might help us see the significance of a place of worship remember who God is and who we are.