B"H, the Jewish people are true to Jerusalem. "If I forget you, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget its skill. Let my tongue adhere to my palate, if I fail to recall you, if I fail to elevate Jerusalem above my foremost joy." (Psalm 137: 5-6)
“Topguide” Avi Dobuler emailed me some survey results recently that showed that between 74 and 80% of Israelis are against a building freeze anywhere in Jerusalem.
And ultimately, friends, it is the building in Eastern and Western Jerusalem that will keep Jerusalem a united city, the eternal capital of the Jewish people.
If Jewish communities are not built in Eastern Jerusalem, a division will not be far off. Surely our national memory is not so short that our citizens wish to return to the Divided and sometimes Deadly Jerusalem of 1948.
Avi added that throughout history, countries have changed their capitals according to the wills of their government and their people. The first capital of the US was New York City, not Washington DC. Frankfurt was the capital of Germany before Berlin. St. Petersburg was the capital of Russia before Moscow. Many other countries changed capital cities, as well. Even Achashverosh did it in the days of the Megillah.
Avi Dobuler wrote, “Any capital of the world can be changed for a million and one reasons. The only one that can’t is Jerusalem.”
Jerusalem has always been the capital of the Jewish people. It is the center of our world and the center of the world since the beginning of Creation. It is the place where G-d “will choose to rest His Name.” (Deuteronomy, 12:11) Avi reminded me that Adam was created from the earth of Jerusalem’s Temple Mount (Mount Moriah). The whole world was created from the Foundation Stone there. Adam brought his sacrifices there, as did Cain and Abel and Abraham. King David united the tribes around Jerusalem, the capital. The deed to Jerusalem and the Temple Mount is right in the Bible. David bought the place of the Temple from Ornan the Jebusite for “gold shekels weight of six hundred”. (Chronicles 1, 21:25)
You and I know that all elected officials, all nations, no matter how mighty today, will continue to rise in power and then fall. Only Jerusalem, Israel and the Jewish People, will last forever, BE”H.
The City with Nine Measures of Beauty
Jerusalem is G-d’s city. It is the Jewish people’s city. Its critics (I began listing their criticisms, but held myself back) denigrate it , but I have been on its hilltops. I have seen panoramic Jerusalem and its hills all around. I have seen the majesty that David saw, “fairest of sites, joy of all the earth” (Psalm 48:3), “ultimate beauty” (Psalm 50:2)
I have walked its streets and seen its holy people. I have entered its gates and climbed through its alleyways. I have touched its stones and listened to their stories.
Jerusalem is a place where people whisper in reverence and shout in joy. It is a place where people run to the study hall, to do a mitzvah, to make a minyan or to catch the bus. It’s a place where people can give charity right on the street and listen to music from an old immigrant or young darbuka players. It’s a place where its normal to see a giant shofar slung over someone’s shoulder. It is a place where friends sit in the park and watch the children play on ancient Roman ruins. It’s a place where people cry about their unsolvable problem and are comforted. It is a place where new marketplaces stand alongside ancient walls. It’s a place where a 21st century tram really will drive one day along a 19th century thoroughfare. Jerusalem may or may not become the hi-tech capital, but lehavdil, it surely will be “Jerusalem ‘The Throne of Hashem’”. (Jeremiah 3:17)
Praise Jerusalem. Love Jerusalem. Build Jerusalem. “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem”. (Psalms 122:6) These things will unite Jerusalem forever.
Happy Yom Yerushalayim. Come to Jerusalem to celebrate!!!