John Tng (16 Oct 1997)
"Psalm 67 & The Six-Day War"

If Ps73 describes the Yom Kippur War in 1973, what about the Six-Day War in 1967? Could we establish a link between Ps67 and the Six-Day War in 1967? Well, I am going to have a shot at it in this article.

There are only 7 verses in Ps67. There are many repetitive phrases and words in this short psalm. Let us group them in order for us to have a feel of the entire psalm.

1 "May God be gracious to us..."
1 "...and bless us..."
1 "...and make his face shine upon us,..."
6 "...our God, will bless us."
7 "God will bless us, ..."
2 "...may be known on earth, ..."
4 " the nations of the earth."
6 "Then the land will ..."
7 "...and all the ends of the earth..."
2 "...your salvation among all nations."
4 "May the nations be glad and ..."
4 "...for you rule the peoples justly..."
4 " the nations of the earth."
3 "May the peoples praise you, ..."
3 "...O God; may all the peoples praise you."
5 "May the peoples praise you, ..."
5 "...O God; may all the peoples praise you."
1 "May God be gracious to us..."
3 "May the peoples praise you, O God;..."
5 "May the peoples praise you, O God;..."
6 "...and God, our God, will bless us."
6 "...and God, our God, will bless us."
7 "God will bless us, and ..."

From these repetitive words and phrases, we get the general idea that God wants to bless the nations and peoples of the earth and that the subjects of His Kingdom are happy with their Ruler which resulted in their praising Him. There is joy, there is justice and there is salvation. This has to be the Millennial Kingdom!

But wait a minute. I thought you have just said Ps67 is supposed to describe the 1967 Six-Day War? To answer that question, first we have to know the significance of the Six-Day War. In this war, Israel regained the entire City of Jerusalem. The Old City was lost to Jordan since Israel's independence in 1948. On page 290 of Martin Gilbert's book, "Jerusalem in the Twentieth Century", we get a glimpse of the jubilation of the Jews on the last day of the Six-Day War, June 8th,

Certainly, Ps67 captures the joy and jubilation of the Jews in liberating Jerusalem from foreign captivity. However, if you look closer, the Psalmist is calling the nations and the peoples of the earth to praise God! This has not yet happened. But it will, in the Millennial rule of Christ. Ps67 appears to be describing the Six-Day War quite well. Consider the following points with me.

#1 JERU-SALEM. Jerusalem is supposed to be a city founded upon "salem", i.e. "peace", yet Jeremiah says, "11 They dress the wound of my people as though it were not serious. "Peace, peace," they say, when there is no peace." (Jer 8 NIV)

The LORD proclaimed in Zechariah 12 (KJV), "2 Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of trembling unto all the people round about, ..." and "3 And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it."

Jesus Himself wanted to grant peace to this City of Peace, the first time He came to His own. In His last trip to the Holy City before He was crucified, Luke recorded Jesus' weeping over Jerusalem,

When the LORD comes again, this time Israel will call upon His name and He will indeed grant peace. "9 'The glory of this present house will be greater than the glory of the former house,' says the LORD Almighty. 'And in this place I will grant peace,' declares the LORD Almighty." (Haggai 2 NIV)

Not only is Jerusalem significant globally, it will be the capital city of the world in the next Millennium as the next point illustrates.

#2 LAW SHALL GO FORTH FROM JERUSALEM. Jerusalem will be the headquarters of the Millennial government of King Jesus. His WORD shall proceed from here to the ends of all the Earth.

Now we know why in Ps67, when Israel first regained the entire city of Jerusalem, the nations and all the peoples of the whole Earth rejoice and praise God. Jerusalem is to be "A HOUSE OF PRAYER FOR ALL NATIONS" (Isa 56:7). We did not see all nations streaming to it to pray to God in 1967, neither are we seeing it now in 1997, but, the Psalmist is looking ahead of time to the future glory and the position of Jerusalem to be "a house of prayer for all nations". That Jerusalem is finally in the hands of God's chosen people, is reason enough to shout to the LORD with praise!

#3 THEY WILL HAVE NO RAIN IF THEY DO NOT GO UP TO JERUSALEM. In the Millennial Kingdom, the prosperity and blessings of a nation depend on her attitude towards Jerusalem!

Interestingly, the Psalmist alludes to this in Ps67,

#4 INTERESTING FACTS. On June 7th, the 5th day of the Six-Day War, the Israeli soldiers captured the Old City where the Wailing Wall is. June 7 and 67. Hmmmmmm. (as Jim would say) Since the entire psalm is about peoples and nations, in other words, MAN, who was created on the SIXTH DAY, surely the SIX-DAY War amplifies this fact. One last thing. There are 7 verses in this short psalm. I believe there are more than meet the eyes.

Let me end with the entire psalm of Ps122.

Psalm 122 (NIV)

1 A song of ascents. Of David.
I rejoiced with those who said to me,
"Let us go to the house of the LORD."
2 Our feet are standing in your gates, O Jerusalem.
3 Jerusalem is built like a city
that is closely compacted together.
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.
5 There the thrones for judgment stand,
the thrones of the house of David.

6 Pray for the peace of Jerusalem:
"May those who love you be secure.
7 May there be peace within your walls
and security within your citadels."
8 For the sake of my brothers and friends, I will say,
"Peace be within you."
9 For the sake of the house of the LORD our God,
I will seek your prosperity.

May the LORD grant peace to Jerusalem.

John Tng