“V’liYerushalayim Irecha b’rachamim tashuv,” (And to Jerusalem, Your city, may You return in compassion), “v’tishkon b’tochah ca’asher Dibarta” (and dwell therein as You spoke of). “U’vnei otah b’karov b’yameinu binyan olam” (And build it, soon in our days, into an eternal building). “V’kisei David, maheira l’tochah tachin” (And the throne of David, establish within it). “Baruch Ata, YHVH, bonei Yerushalayim” (Blessed are You, YHVH, who is building Jerusalem).
~ from the daily Amida Prayer
Jerusalem isn’t just another city in Israel. Jerusalem is the spiritual wellspring for the Jewish nation—and indeed for the whole the world. We say “And Jerusalem” because our request for the restoration of Jerusalem is a continuation of the prayer for tzaddikim. Whereas the tzaddikim inspire our people to become a Torah nation, Jerusalem inspires our people to become an exemplary spiritual nation; a light unto the nations of the world. And through Jerusalem the whole world enjoys a personal ongoing connection to God, as the psalmist praised “from Zion will come forth Torah and the word of God from Jerusalem.”
In this prayer we not only pray to God we also pray for God. We ask God to come back to Jerusalem, dwell there and establish the throne of David as a precursor to the coming of Mashiach and global redemption.
And to Jerusalem, Your city where Your presence was once most manifest,
may You return in compassion, and dwell therein as You spoke of.
We know that just as we were exiled by our wrongdoings, God, You too were exiled by our wrongdoings; Your presence is no longer manifest. We now ask that You also come home; that Your presence once again be manifest in Jerusalem and from there to the whole world.
And build it, soon in our days, into a ‘binyan olam’ — an “eternal building” that lasts for eternity and a “building of eternity” which embodies eternity; where we sense Your timeless presence.
And the throne of David, establish within it as a precursor to global redemption when the whole world will feel Your presence everywhere.
Blessed be You — May you be abundantly manifest YHVH, as one who is building right now Jerusalem.
The more we believe that God is always building Jerusalem as His centre from where global redemption will unfold and we sincerely want Jerusalem to be that spiritual epicenter, the more the blessings for Jerusalem and global redemption can become manifest.