Jerusalem recently celebrated a double centennial event, but the honoring and due recognition of that city drew an uproar in the world community, partly because of widespread ignorance of little-known Jerusalem facts and its history.
Jerusalem continues to be the hottest focal point of world attention in the realm of both politics and religion. This attention has mostly resulted in protests, rallies, with some leading to violence, deaths, and even wars in the past.
But why would one particular city in this world be so much contested and fought over, when there are hundreds of other cities around the world which are not as congested and with more abundant water supply? Why Jerusalem?
You need to know the answers through the only authoritative and reliable source which is revealed in biblical history and prophecy. The information contained therein could affect your future and those of your loved ones.
12 Important Facts About Jerusalem:
FACT 1: Most people in this world today don’t know, or care to know, about the current Jerusalem centennial celebrations on two related events.
November 2, 1917 marked the date of the British Balfour Declaration. This date was when then British Foreign Secretary Arthur James Balfour wrote to Lord Rothschild of England, unilaterally “Declaring a State for Israel.” Britain was already the major key player in world affairs in World War 1.
December 11, 1917, about a month later, Gen. Edmund Henry Hynman Allenby victoriously entered the City of Jerusalem (purposely on foot [rather than on usual horseback or aboard a military vehicle] to show humble respect for the liberated holy city).
This was after the defeat and surrender (signified by their waving a white flag) of the Ottoman Empire’s fighting forces led by the Turks, which occurred two days earlier, on December 9, 1917.
On the day he entered Jerusalem, General Allenby declared a benevolent Martial Law published in the seven languages commonly used in the region, which showed great respect toward the three major religions there: Jewish, Christian, and Islam.
General Allenby was then the British Field Marshal and Commander of the Third Army in the Egyptian Expeditionary Force. He was eventually appointed High Commissioner for Egypt and Sudan and later given the distinction as First Viscount Allenby.
FACT 2: Apart from the British, no other world leader ever officially and boldly recognized Jerusalem as the rightful capital city of Israel.
Last December 6, 2017 (exactly 100 years since General Allenby defeated the Ottoman Empire’s rule in Jerusalem and in the Middle East), amidst opposition from the Arab nations, the United Nations, the European Union, and even from the Pope, U.S. President Donald Trump boldly, officially, and rightfully recognized in a televised speech, Jerusalem as the historical and obvious capital of Israel.
FACT 3: Strangely, decisions concerning Jerusalem were not done by Israel (on which Jerusalem is geographically located), but by the United Nations.
On November 29, 1947 (exactly 70 years ago), Jerusalem as a then-fledgling city, for the first time was partitioned by the United Nations into the Jewish and the Arab sectors.
FACT 4: Surprisingly, the present site of Jerusalem was where God commanded Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac on one of the mountains of Moriah.
While God doesn’t teach nor condone child sacrifice, God tested Abraham’s faith and obedience, telling him to take a three-day journey (from Beersheba where Abraham was residing then, no less than 80 kilometers away) to sacrifice his son Isaac on one of the mountains of Moriah (Genesis 21:33; 22:2).
FACT 5: Centuries later, King David of Israel purchased the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite (where Solomon’s temple was later built) for 600 shekels of gold, to do his offerings before God.
“Therefore, the angel of the LORD commanded… that David should go and erect an altar to the LORD on the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite” (1 Chronicles 21:18-28).
“Then King David said to Ornan, “No, but I will surely buy it for the full price, for I will not take what is yours for the LORD, nor offer burnt offerings with that which costs me nothing. So David gave Ornan six hundred shekels of gold by weight for the place” (1 Chronicles 21:24, 25).
FACT 6: King David’s son, King Solomon, was commanded by God to specifically build the house of God, the temple, in Jerusalem at Mount Moriah.
“Now Solomon began to build the house of the LORD at Jerusalem on Mount Moriah, where the Lord had appeared to his father David, at the place that David had prepared on the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite” (2 Chronicles 3:1).
FACT 7: The God of heaven and earth gave Jerusalem to Israel through its kings, David and Solomon, over 3,000 years ago. No man or group of men could change what God has already done.
“For you are a holy people to the Lord your God; the Lord your God has chosen you to be a people for Himself, a special treasure above all the peoples on the face of the earth. The Lord did not set His love on you nor choose you because you were more in number than any other people, for you were the least of all peoples; but because the Lord loves you, and because He would keep the oath which He swore to your fathers…” (Deuteronomy 7:6-8)
FACT 8: God is fair. After warnings for disobedience, God punished His chosen people, allowing them and their city Jerusalem to be under the foot of the Gentiles. History attests to this fact.
While on earth, Christ also prophesied: “And they will fall by the edge of the sword, and be led away captive into all nations. And Jerusalem will be trampled by Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled” (Luke 21:24).
FACT 9: Why in 1917? ANSWER: It was just the end of a 2,520-year punishment for Judah. Let us study a little bit of prophecy combined with history.
Leviticus 26:18 warns about a “seven times” punishment for their sins. In biblical prophetic interpretation, a “time” is a period of one year composed of 360 days in the Hebrew calendar. The computation is based on Numbers 14:34 (a day for a year principle). Therefore, “seven times” (7 x 360) is equal to 2,520 years. Now, apply this to the history of Israel and Judah.
NOTE: After the death of King Solomon, Israel was divided into two separate nations. The ten northern tribes [biblically called Israel, but historically referred to as “The Lost Ten Tribes”] was headed by King Solomon’s adviser, Jeroboam. The southern tribe composed of Judah and Levi [commonly referred to as “Jews” in history] was headed by King Solomon’s son, Rehoboam (1 Kings 12:19-20). Surprisingly, these two divided nations were constantly at war against each other (1 Kings 14:30; 15:6)!
The northern kingdom was conquered by the Assyrians in 721-718 B.C. The end of their punishment of 2,520 years (2,520 – 718 + 1 [since there’s no year “0”]) was in 1803. Prominent among the “Lost Ten Tribes” were the British and American people, descendants of Joseph who was given a double portion of blessings (Genesis 48:5,16; 49:22-26). Notice that unlike all the ancient nations, they suddenly came to world power and domination starting in 1803.
The southern kingdom (Judah) was conquered by the Babylonians in a series of sieges from 604-585 B.C. The end of their 2,520-year punishment (2,520 – 604 + 1 [no year “0”]) brings us to the year 1917. This was when the Balfour Declaration was made and when British General Allenby liberated Jerusalem from the Ottoman Empire led by the Turks.
FACT 10: Bible prophecy tells us that Jerusalem will be a burden to all nations, and will have continual conflicts with its neighboring countries, yet will be victorious in war.
Surprisingly, it is the most hated nation in the United Nations organization, with many resolutions filed against it.
“I am going to make Jerusalem a cup that sends all the surrounding peoples reeling. Judah will be besieged as well as Jerusalem. On that day, when all the nations of the earth are gathered against her, I will make Jerusalem an immovable rock for all the nations. All who try to move it will injure themselves. On that day I will strike every horse with panic and its rider with madness,” declares the Lord. “I will keep a watchful eye over Judah, but I will blind all the horses of the nations. Then the clans of Judah will say in their hearts, ‘The people of Jerusalem are strong, because the Lord Almighty is their God.’ On that day I will make the clans of Judah like a firepot in a woodpile, like a flaming torch among sheaves. They will consume all the surrounding peoples right and left, but Jerusalem will remain intact in her place. (Zechariah 12:2-6, NIV)
Among her notable miraculous victories include the Six-Day War on June 5-10, 1967 (50 years since the Balfour Declaration, and 50 years ago — a significant double Jubilee).
FACT 11: Bible prophecy reveals a time when Jerusalem will be surrounded by very great armies leading to what is commonly referred to as the Battle of Armageddon (In Hebrew, Har Megiddo).
At that time, the city will be conquered, and the women raped. But woe be to the armies that will be gathered against it, for the returning Christ Himself will fight against them with supernatural destruction. With this fearful prediction, you will not want to be there at that time, unless you reject this prophecy?
“I will gather all the nations to Jerusalem to fight against it; the city will be captured, the houses ransacked, and the women raped. Half of the city will go into exile, but the rest of the people will not be taken from the city. Then the Lord will go out and fight against those nations, as he fights on a day of battle” (Zechariah 14:2-3, NIV).
“This is the plague with which the Lord will strike all the nations that fought against Jerusalem: Their flesh will rot while they are still standing on their feet, their eyes will rot in their sockets, and their tongues will rot in their mouths. On that day people will be stricken by the Lord with great panic. They will seize each other by the hand and attack one another. Judah too will fight at Jerusalem…” (Zechariah 14:12-14, NIV).
FACT 12: The returning Christ will make Jerusalem the capital city of His world-ruling Kingdom.
For 1,000 years, He will establish worldwide peace and prosperity for the first time. This will also be the forerunner of the City of God — New Jerusalem — which will come down to this earth from heaven after the Millennium.
“See, I will create new heavens and a new earth. The former things will not be remembered, nor will they come to mind. But be glad and rejoice forever in what I will create, for I will create Jerusalem to be a delight and its people a joy. I will rejoice over Jerusalem and take delight in my people; the sound of weeping and of crying will be heard in it no more. Never again will there be in it an infant who lives but a few days, or an old man who does not live out his years; the one who dies at a hundred will be thought a mere child; the one who fails to reach a hundred will be considered accursed. They will build houses and dwell in them; they will plant vineyards and eat their fruit. No longer will they build houses and others live in them, or plant and others eat. For as the days of a tree, so will be the days of my people; my chosen ones will long enjoy the work of their hands. They will not labor in vain, nor will they bear children doomed to misfortune; for they will be a people blessed by the Lord, they and their descendants with them. Before they call I will answer; while they are still speaking I will hear. The wolf and the lamb will feed together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox, and dust will be the serpent’s food. They will neither harm nor destroy on all my holy mountain,” says the Lord (Isaiah 65:17-25, NIV).
“Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death, or mourning, or crying, or pain, for the old order of things has passed away” (Revelation 21:1-4, NIV).
Summary and Conclusion
Jerusalem is mentioned more than 810 times in the Holy Bible, showing its importance in God’s great plan for mankind. Also, His chosen people are considered “the apple of His eye” (Deuteronomy 32:10), showing how much He guides, guards, and blesses them, as evidenced by the precision in which events have happened in history. Therefore, in principle, those who bless them will be blessed, while those who curse them will be cursed (Genesis 12:3). May the Jerusalem facts and knowledge you gained in reading this article properly guide you, seeing that most of them were quoted from the words of God. May you be blessed to even be part of God’s soon-coming glorious Kingdom!