John 14:9 “Whoever has seen me has seen the Father.” |
The dear sages who compared Jerusalem to Sarah our matriarch could not have foreseen the extent of their analogy. In the midrash of the barren woman, Hashem reveals the messianic future of His dear city to the prophet Isaiah. Since its sacking by the Romans in the first century C.E., many have looked at Jerusalem just as Isaiah saw her: a barren woman sitting on a heap of ashes, ostracized and rejected by her husband because of her many infidelities (Isaiah 54; Jeremiah 26:6).
One of the legends I like the most is the one about the weaning of Isaac. It is said that Abraham called in a great feast (Genesis 21:8). The rumor had gone around that Isaac was actually Pharaoh Abimelek’s child (Genesis 20:2). Not only people couldn't believe that old Abraham sired a boy, but they also could not conceive Sarah lactating at ninety years old. The point of the feast was to vindicate the miracle God had performed and put the rumors to rest. Great Sheiks came from all around in great caravans and pomp to attend Abraham’s feast. To prove herself, not only did Sarah nursed her son, but she offered to nurse every baby in the camp. She did, and the story goes on to say that every child Sarah nursed eventually became a king or a person of great influence and integrity. Also, in order to erase any doubt that the child was truly Abraham’s, God had made the face of Isaac similar to that of his father, so that it was said that he who saw the son saw the father. Sounds familiar doesn’t it (John 14:9)?
Look now why our ages compared Sarah to Jerusalem. Just like Sarah was, twice Jerusalem was conquered and taken captive by foreigners, first by the Babylonians, and the second by the Romans. With the re-establishment of the State of Israel, the Roman captivity shows signs of coming to its end. Having the past of Jerusalem in Sarah's life, let us now see now its future.
After the return from her second captivity, Isaac, the promised child, the fore-shadow of Messiah was born. Sarah who barren and past the age, finally bore fruit. In the same manner today, Jerusalem, one of the oldest city in the world, a city that has been used, abused, rejected, redeemed, to be rejected again and re-redeemed, prides itself of a new vibrant Messianic community rising all over in Israel: the ‘remnant of the seed of the woman’ (Revelation 12:17) preparing the way for the soon return of the King (Revelations 19). The same miracle that rejuvenated Sarah to conceive Isaac and lactate happens in our day through Jerusalem. Think of it: a whole country was re-born in a day with a new generation of messianic believers preparing the way for the soon-coming of the King who will rule the earth in the justice and righteousness of the Father. Will they become the kings of integrity ‘nursed’ to rule in the Jerusalem of the World to Come? May it be soon Abba, even in our days!
Those who would try to interfere with the miraculous plan of God are playing with the unstoppable spiritual and natural forces that created the heavens and the earth. May they beware!
Patrick Gabriel Lumbroso
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