Sunday we enjoyed a jaunt to the Old City. Pictured above is the Eastern Gate, not far from were we live. There is so much history and prophecy associated with this place.
The Eastern Gate or Golden Gate–as it is sometimes called–faces the Mount of Olives on the east side of the Old City. It the oldest gate, and one of the few that are sealed. In Jewish tradition, the shekinah glory of God would shine through this gate before it was shut up and will appear again when the Messiah returns and opens this gate. That is why Jews pray for mercy at this entrance. Some still called it the Mercy Gate. In Arabic, it is call the Gate of Eternal Life; and in ancient times, it was known as the Beautiful Gate.
While in Jerusalem, the Bible documents that Jesus passed through this portal to the city many times. Muslims sealed the gate during the rule of Suleiman in 1541 to prevent the Messiah’s return. A cemetery was placed there by Muslims as well, and no one can walk near the gate today. It considered holy ground. The police protect it all the time, making sure no one desecrates the graveyard.
As believers, we know that from the Mt. of Olives, which is close to the Golden Gate, Jesus ascended to heaven after the resurrection and said, “In like manner, I will come again.” Those who love him await his appearing. It is to the Mount of Olives that Jesus will return again in the latter days.
The Eastern Gate has been sealed until His second coming. What a glorious day it will be when those gates will open to receive him as the King of kings and Lord of lords.
Ezekiel 44:1-3: “Then he brought me back the way of the gate of the outward sanctuary which looketh toward the east; and it was shut. Then said the Lord unto me; This gate shall be shut, it shall not be opened, and no man shall enter in by it; because the Lord, the God of Israel, hath entered in by it, therefore it shall be shut. It is for the prince; the prince!”
The Eastern Gate is shut, awaiting the arrival of the Prince of Peace!
Zechariah 14:4: “And his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south.”
Acts 1:10-12: “And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven. Then returned they unto Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet.”
We can’t see the Eastern Gate from our apartment, but we can walk there and imagine…