corner graphic   Hi,    
Finding the new version too difficult to understand? Go to

Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Psalms 87:2

The LORD loves the gates of Zion More than all the other dwelling places of Jacob.

Adam Clarke Commentary

The Lord loveth the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob - That is, he preferred Zion for his habitation, to be the place of his temple and sanctuary, before any other place in the promised land. Mystically, the Lord prefers the Christian Church to the Jewish: the latter was only a type of the former; and had no glory by reason of the glory that excelleth. To this position no exception can be made.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.

Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Psalms 87:2". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https: 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

The Lord loveth the gates of Zion - Compare Psalm 78:68. The gates of a city were the places of concourse; where business was transacted; where courts were held. The particular allusion here seems to be to the thronging multitudes pressing into the city for public worship - the numbers that gathered together at the great feasts and festivals of the nation; and the meaning is, that he looked with more pleasure on such multitudes as they thronged the gates, pressing in that they might worship him, than on any other scene in the land.

More than all the dwellings of Jacob - Than any of the places where the descendants of Jacob, or where his people dwell. Much as he might be pleased with their quiet abodes, with their peace, prosperity, and order, and with the fact that his worship was daily celebrated in those happy families, yet he had superior pleasure in the multitudes that crowded the ways to the place where they would publicly acknowledge him as their God.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.

Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Psalms 87:2". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https: 1870.

The Biblical Illustrator

Psalms 87:2

The Lord loveth the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob.

The gates of Zion

I. God has always shown a particular respect to houses set apart for His worship. Nor is He less present with us than He was with His ancient worshippers. Now God, dwelling in a tent and a temple, prefigured the incarnation of our Saviour, who having taken upon Him our nature, dwelt, or tabernacled among us.

II. Worshipping God in such places is more conducive to the spiritual improvement of the worshippers than elsewhere.

1. The character and perfections of God never appear with such bright lustre as in the sanctuary, where numbers of His faithful subjects are assembled before Him, to present the sacrifices of prayer and thanksgiving.

2. The worship performed in the house of God is the most direct testimony of our homage and obedience.

3. Worshipping God in such places animates and strengthens us in our devotional exercises.

4. Worshipping God in the sanctuary contributes to promote peace and happiness among all orders and degrees of men.

III. The importance of a regular attendance upon the services that are there performed. Like the impotent man at the pool of Bethesda, we must continue our attendance till it please God to give a blessing to the means of His own appointment. (John Ramsay, M. A.)

God’s peculiar regard to places set apart for Divine worship

I. That God bears a different respect to places set apart and consecrated to His worship, from what He bears to all other places designed to the uses of common life.

1. Those eminent interposals of the Divine providence for the erecting and preserving such places, will be one pregnant and strong argument to prove the difference of God’s respect to them, and to others of common use.

2. The second argument for the proof of the same assertion shall be taken from those remarkable judgments shown by God upon the violators of things consecrated and set apart to holy uses. A coal, we know, snatched from the altar, once fired the nest of the eagle, the royal and commanding bird; and so has sacrilege consumed the families of princes, broken sceptres, and destroyed kingdoms.

3. The ground and reason why God shows such a concern for these things is that He has the sole property of them. It is a known maxim, that “in Deo Runt jura omnia”; and consequently, that He is the proprietor of all things, by that grand and transcendent right founded upon creation. Yet, notwithstanding, He may be said to have a greater, because a sole property in some things, for that He permits not the use of them to men, to whom yet He has granted the free use of all other things. Now, this property may be founded upon a double ground.

II. That God prefers the worship paid Him in such places above that which is offered Him in any other places whatsoever.

1. Because such places are naturally apt to excite a greater reverence and devotion in the discharge of Divine service than places of common use. The place properly reminds a man of the business of the place, and strikes a kind of awe into the thoughts, when they reflect upon that great and sacred Majesty they use to treat and converse with there: they find the same holy consternation upon themselves that Jacob did at his consecrated Bethel, which he called “the gate of heaven”: and if such places are so, then surely a daily expectation at the gate is the readiest way to gain admittance into the house.

2. Because in such places it is a more direct service and testification of our homage to Him. For surely, if I should have something to ask of a great person, it were greater respect to wait upon him with my petition at his own house, than to desire him to come and receive it at mine. (R. South, D. D.)

God’s love for the gates of Zion

I. The Lord loves the dwellings of Jacob--He loves those that are true Israelites. These are succeeded by the name Christian, for the Christian Church is now become the true Israel of God. He loves His saints on account of that image of Himself which they bear: He loves them on account of those graces which are infused into them when they are renewed by the Spirit; He loves them on account of the relation they stand in to Him as His people, and as His Church, who are qualified for the duties of the relation by that love of their Father, that reliance upon His care, that delight in His person, that enjoyment in His service which belongs to dutiful and affectionate children.

II. He loves the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob--nothing in the dwellings of Jacob so much attracts His attention as the people of God connected together in a social capacity. He regards with peculiar complacency the worship of His saints--

1. On its own account, as a yielding to Him that which is His prerogative.

2. On account of that union of mind and consent of heart evinced in the assembling of His people together and constituting themselves into a Church.

3. On account of that deference to His authority which is evinced by maintaining and keeping up the practice of those institutes which rest entirely on that authority.

III. Consider how it is that God manifests this complacency in the gates of Zion above the dwellings of Jacob.

1. By making the assembly of the saints the grand means of conversion,

2. By continually maintaining in operation those gifts which are for the edification of the saints, and without which the union of the saints would be with difficulty maintained.

3. By that marvellous protection which is afforded to the interests of the Church of God; whereby, though weak, and frequently reduced to a handful of disciples yet they have been protected, and their society on earth continued. (R. Hall, M. A.)

God’s regard for His Church

I. The important fact implied. “The Lord loveth the dwellings of Jacob,” i.e. the righteous in their personal and domestic capacities.

1. He loves them in their individual character as His people.

2. He loves them in their domestic capacity (Psalms 128:1-6.; Proverbs 20:7; Jeremiah 31:1-40.),

3. He loves them in all their religious services.

II. The glorious declaration given. “He loveth the gates of Zion better,” etc. That is, He greatly prefers the public assemblies of His people over all the dwellings of Jacob.

1. The evidences of this preference.

2. What reasons can be assigned for this affectionate preference. It is in Zion, or the public assemblies of His saints,


1. Do we love the gates of Zion? What evidences do we give? Speak for it; think of it; pray for it; labour for it.

2. What advantages have we derived from it? Justification, comfort, holiness, longing for heaven. (J. Burns, D. D.)

Zion the spiritual centre

The glory of a nation is in the quality of its manhood and womanhood. It is not determined by the number of square miles that it may possess, not by its geographical position, nor by its commerce, but by its men. There is a little village in the west of Scotland that has to-day no commercial value, but it is great because David Livingstone was born there. We come to this truth, then, that--

1. Personality gives value to place. Bethlehem was but an insignificant Eastern village; it was not the centre of any trade, it was off the main highway of commerce. It is the personality of Jesus that gives value to Bethlehem.

2. Zion is great also because God “records His name there. He loves the gates of Zion.” A peculiar blessing ever attaches to the house of God. This is the place where the feet of our God rest, and is thereby made glorious. It is here where this man and that man was born into the new life of God.

3. We come then to this further truth that Zion is the place where souls are born. This is where men are detached from the world and attached to Christ, where they are polished and perfected. In all these souls born in Zion, God sees wonderful possibilities.

4. Let me say further that in Zion God is always wanting to work on the men born there, and to bring the best out of them. Aaron’s rod was to him only a piece of ordinary timber, a dead stick, with no possibility of life in it; but when he laid it up in the sanctuary, and God began to work His silent wonders on it, Aaron gazed with astonishment on the transformed stick as he saw it bearing buds and blossoms and ripe almonds. We often wonder what God can ever make of the men and women that are born in Zion. They come in late, some of them, and come in sighing and moaning, “Give me back my lost years.” There is a sense in which God cannot do this, but there is another sense in which He can. “I will restore unto you the years that the caterpillar and the locust and the palmerworm have eaten.” “Where sin abounded grace did much more abound.” It is a significant fact known to botanists that the late flowering plants have often the most magnificent blossoms. Of late florists have been treating plants to what is known as the “cold process.” The plants are kept in an ice-house so that the blooms are repressed. This repression really does the plant no harm. They blossom all the more freely and rapidly when brought into a warm atmosphere. Many a man has for years been kept in a kind of spiritual ice-house, but some day, in the warmth of a gracious revival, he breaks out into unexpected splendour and glowing wonder. A recent writer states that an “Apollo” has been discovered in Rome amid a heap of rubbish. It was headless, and had only one arm. A sad sight. The artist’s beautiful work marred by the rough handling of time and the weather. How many of Christ’s works of art-saved men--get mutilated, debased, crushed, ruined. Some want a spiritual limb, an eye, a hand, a foot. They are full of defects and incompleteness; but it is the glory of God to work on them till not a coarse fibre is left, and His redemptive power produces in them spiritual completeness.

5. What lots of different material there is in Zion for God to work on. There are so many different characters, many of them unpromising and unlikely that God has much to do. Yet He never despairs. Out of Peter, that handful of sand blown away by a maiden’s breath, God brings the man of rock-like solidity. He cares for the stars, will He not care for the man and woman for whom His own Son died upon the cross? The God who works with completeness in the starry realms will bring out perfectness in you, His own child.

6. And believe me, our God does not work haphazardly. He has a plan. “It doth not yet appear what we shall be.” No, God has not finished with us yet.

7. But all this must begin down here. “When God counts up the people, He shall say this man and that was born there.” The only important question about any Church is, “Are souls born there?” This was the glory of the ancient Church. “Multitudes turned to the Lord.” What value the Bible places on the individual! Christ thought very little of the tyranny of numbers. This old Jew saw them coming from the most unlikely places. From Rahab and Babylon, Philistia and Tyre and Ethiopia; “all sorts and conditions of men “were to find a resting-place, a home within the walls of God’s Zion. God’s house is not a select club for the rich. It is a home for all. What an honour to open the gates of Zion to the night-wanderer and the outcast. (A. J. Campbell.)

A Divine preference and its reasons

When the Roman soldier went out to fight, his battle-cry was “Pro aris et focis”--that is, for altars and hearths. It was not of his fields that he thought, it was not of his beeves--or at any rate it was not of these in the first place, but of treasures he held dearer still, the inmates of his dwelling, the honour of his gods. Now, it is these two thoughts, of home and of sanctuary, that are brought together in the text. What are the “dwellings of Jacob”? Are they not just the peaceful homesteads scattered up and down the land, in which families dwelt together in unity with themselves, and in covenant with their God? And what are the “gates of Zion”? Are they not a symbol of the common convocations when they gathered for religious worship--to pray, to praise, and to sacrifice?

I. God’s regard for the family. We may prove it by various facts, and in especial by three,

1. Consider the place God has given to the family in the economy of nature. For what is home--home, I mean, where it attains its destined ideal and fulfils its appropriate ends? It is a means of protection for the young, hiding them in their defenceless years from the sight of evil and the strife of tongues. It is a ministry of refreshment for the old, calming and recruiting them in their hours of weariness after the bustle and fret of toil. And it is a school of charity for all.

2. Consider the place God has given the family in the kingdom of grace. Let us never forget that there is a law of heredity in grace. There exists a principle of transmission, on which Scripture lays abundant stress, by which the generations are made one, linked together in a chain of blessing.

3. Consider, too, the place that God has given the family in the discipline of Christ. Can there possibly be a stronger proof of the honour which God sets on the household than the fact that to the household’s keeping and to the household’s care He entrusted the most precious treasure of heaven, the noblest life on earthy

II. God’s greater regard for the Church. The text says that, good and beautiful as home is, the assembly of the saints is better. And why? Why is it that, while God delighted in these peaceable habitations, each beneath its vine and fig-tree, the nurseries of brave young men and pure and gentle maidens, sons as plants grown up in their youth, daughters as corner-stones polished after the similitude era palace, He took still greater delight in the temple services at Jerusalem?

1. The Church’s fellowship is more catholic. However close, however sacred, and however enriching the fellowship of the family is, it is the fellowship of those that are one in blood. As such it is circumscribed. And there is an element of selfishness in it, innocent selfishness if you will, permissible selfishness, but selfishness notwithstanding, a certain home-contrariness which may easily turn to exclusiveness, coldness towards the wants, and indifference towards the interests, of those beyond. But in the fellowship of the Church the range is extended, the horizon is enlarged. We are out on the open platform of grace.

2. The Church’s testimony is more public. Home means privacy, home means seclusion; there is the erection of a certain barrier, the intervention of a certain screen. And therefore the witness of home, however consistent and faithful, may be said to begin and to end with the inmates of home; it is seldom far-reaching, because little observed. It is otherwise with the Church; publicity is of its very essence. The character of the Church is maintained, the ends of the Church are fulfilled, not when it edifies itself merely, but when it makes confession to the world.

3. The Church’s character is more spiritual. The Church is the special abode of the Holy Ghost, whose living and personal presence gives meaning to every privilege and might to every agency, purifying the Church’s life, prospering the Church’s work. And, in comparing the Church with the family, may we not say that the Church has ampler provisions, finer adaptations, more sacred and select appliances, more ample and effective energies, for the maintenance of God’s worship, the proclamation of His message, and, as a consequence of both, the saving and the sanctifying of souls?

4. The Church’s experiences are more permanent. There are duties and joys of the domestic life which it would be wrong to say, “I am acting and feeling now as I shall act and feel in heaven,” for we shall be changed in more ways than we think, if by grace we get there. But we can say so of worship. For the exercises of worship are spiritual, they are therefore abiding and unalterable; the future can make no real change in them. Both home and Church have their close connection with the heavenly life. But while home life prepares for it, Church life anticipates it. The one is a training, the other is an earnest.

III. The principle of the text, with its elevation of Church over home, in the aspects, and for the purposes we have spoken of, is suggestive of various practical lessons.

I. It means comfort for the homeless. Though God has denied you the lesser good, He offers you the greater. If He has shut the door of home, He has thrown wide the door of the Church.

2. The text suggests a caution to those who have homes. For though the Church may be a substitute for home, home can in no wise be a substitute for the Church. Beware of imagining that it may. See to it that the home points upwards to the Church. Teach your children to take their place at the Church’s services. Accustom them to bear a share in the Church’s work. Always keep before them the duty of communicating at the Church’s table, and making avowal of the Church’s Lord. (W. A. Gray.)

Public worship to be preferred before private

Public worship is to be preferred before private. So it is by the Lord, so it should be by His people. So it was under the law, so it must be under the Gospel.

1. The Lord is more glorified by public worship than private. God is then glorified by us when we acknowledge that He is glorious. And He is most glorified when this acknowledgment is most public.

2. There is more of the Lord’s presence in public worship than in private. He is present with His people in the use of public ordinances in a more especial manner, more effectually, constantly, intimately.

3. Here are the clearest manifestations of God. Here He manifests Himself more than in private. Why was Judah called a valley of vision, but because the Lord manifested Himself to that people in public ordinances?

4. There is more spiritual advantage to be got in the use of public ordinances than in private. Whatever spiritual benefit is to be found in private duties, that, and much more, may be expected from public ordinances when duly improved. There is more spiritual light and life, more strength and growth, more comfort and soul refreshment.

5. Public worship is more edifying than private. In private you provide for your own good, but in public you do good both to yourselves and others. And that is a received rule, that good is best which is most diffusive, most communicative. Example has the force of a motive; we may stir up others by our example (Zechariah 8:20-21).

6. Public ordinances are a better security against apostasy than private, and therefore to be preferred: an argument worthy our observation in these backsliding times.

7. Here the Lord works His greatest works; greater works than ordinarily He works by private means.

8. Public worship is the nearest resemblance of heaven. In heaven, so Ear as the Scripture describes it to us, there is nothing done in private, nothing in secret, all the worship of that glorious company is public (Hebrews 12:22-23). They make one glorious congregation, and so jointly together sing the praises of Him that sits on the throne, and the praises of the Lamb, and continue employed in this public worship to eternity.

9. The examples of the most renowned servants of God, who have preferred public worship before private, is a sufficient argument.

10. Public worship is the most available for the procuring of the greatest mercies, and preventing and removing the greatest judgments.

11. The precious blood of Christ is most interested in public worship, and that must needs be most valuable which has most interest in that which is of infinite value. The blood of Christ has most influence upon public worship, more than on private: for the private duties of God’s worship, private prayers, meditation, and such like, had been required of, and performed by, Adam and his posterity, if he had continued in the state of innocency; they had been due by the light of nature, if Christ had never died, if life and immortality had never been brought to light by the Gospel. But the public preaching of the Gospel, and the administration of the federal seals, have a necessary dependence upon the death of Christ. As they are the representations, so they are the purchase of that precious blood; as Christ is hereby set forth as crucified before our eyes, so are they the purchase of Christ crucified, so are they the gifts of Christ triumphant.

12. The promises of God are more to public worship than to private (Exodus 20:24; Isaiah 4:5; Isaiah 55:2-3; Psalms 36:8-9). (D. Clarkson.)

The gates of Zion

The gates of our Zion ought to be--

I. Greeting gates. Think how the welcoming heart of Jesus opened itself to all sorts and conditions of men during His earthly life--to the leper, the Samaritan woman, the thief on the cross, etc. Surely, if the Church is to represent her Lord, her gates ought to be gates of greeting.

II. Established and guarding gates. Our churches stand for great facts and doctrines--like God, the humanity and Deity of Jesus, the authority of Scripture, the atonement, the sacredness of the Sabbath, righteousness, beneficence, etc.

III. Loved gates. What our Lord loves we should love. And especially your own Church should you thus love.

IV. Supported gates, Every Church-member should be willing and glad to do his share toward the support of worship.

V. Attractive gates. So winning, so wrapped in genial and cheerful atmosphere should our Church services be, so evident in their holding forth the attractive Christ, that the Churchless throng should be constrained to enter and to share. (Homiletic Monthly.)

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "Psalms 87:2". The Biblical Illustrator. https: 1905-1909. New York.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

The Lord loveth the gates of Zion,.... Which the Targum interprets of the schools, as preferable to the synagogues: the Lord loves Zion herself; that is, the church, and therefore has chosen it for his habitation, took up his rest and residence in it, has founded it, and set Christ as King over it, and by whom he has redeemed it; and he loves her gates, the public ordinances; he loves them that come to Zion's gates, and wait and worship there, and who enter in and become members thereof; and he loves what is done there, he being there publicly prayed unto, and publicly praised by a large number of his people; where his word is faithfully preached, and reverently attended to, and his ordinances truly administered, and the graces of his saints exercised on him: wherefore, because all this is done socially, and in a public manner, and so much for his own manifestative glory, he esteems these

more than all the dwellings of Jacob; the private habitations of his people; yet he has a regard to these, the bounds of which he fixed from eternity, and where he was delighting himself before they were in being; and he loves the persons that dwell in them, and what is done there in a right manner, as closet and family worship; but when these are put in competition with public worship, the latter is preferred unto them, because done by more, and more publicly; Zion and its gates, the church and its ordinances, are preferable to all the dwellings of Jacob put together.

Copyright Statement
The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rightes Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855

Gill, John. "Commentary on Psalms 87:2". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https: 1999.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

gates — for the enclosures, or city to which they opened (Psalm 9:14; Psalm 122:2; compare Psalm 132:13, Psalm 132:14).

Copyright Statement
These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.

Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Psalms 87:2". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https: 1871-8.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

The LORD loveth the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob.

Zion — That is, Zion itself, or Jerusalem, which was built upon and near mount Zion. He saith Zion rather than Jerusalem, to intimate that he loved Jerusalem for Zion's sake, or for the temple, which he chose for his peculiar dwelling place.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.

Wesley, John. "Commentary on Psalms 87:2". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https: 1765.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

2Jehovah loveth the gates of Zion above all the dwellings of Jacob. Here we are taught that all the excellence of the holy city depended on the free choice which God had made of it. With this agrees what is stated in Psalms 78:60, that God rejected Shiloh, the tribe of Ephraim, and the tabernacle of Joseph, that he might dwell in Zion which he loved. The prophet then points out the cause why God preferred that one place before all others; and the cause which he assigns is, not the worth of the place itself, but the free love of God. If it is demanded why Jerusalem was so highly distinguished, let this short answer be deemed sufficient, Because it so pleased God. To this the divine love is to be traced as its source; but the end of such a choice was, that there might be some fixed place in which the true religion should be preserved, and the unity of the faith maintained, until the advent of Christ, and from which it might afterwards flow into all the regions of the earth. This, then, explains why the prophet celebrates Jerusalem as possessing the high distinction of having God for its master-builder, its founder and protector. Farther, he attributes to the divine favor and adoption whatever excellence it possessed above other places. In putting Zion for Jerusalem, and the gates for the whole compass of the city, there is a double synecdoche.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.

Calvin, John. "Commentary on Psalms 87:2". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https: 1840-57.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Psalms 87:2 The LORD loveth the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob.

Ver. 2. The Lord loveth the gates of Zion] Nothing but his mere love moved him to make choice of it, above all other places, there to declare his power, presence, and goodness. He first chose it for his love, and then loved it for his choice; and so he doth his Church.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

Trapp, John. "Commentary on Psalms 87:2". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https: 1865-1868.

Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary

Read with reference to Christ, this verse is most beautiful; for it is in Christ the Lord visiteth and rejoiceth in his people. Lovely as Jacob's praying seed are, yet they are so only in Jesus. The acceptation of their persons and their offerings is all in Christ. Ephesians 1:6.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on Psalms 87:2". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". https: 1828.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

The gates, i.e. the city gates, being oft put for cities, as Deuteronomy 15:7 16:5 Psalms 9:14.

Of Zion; largely so called, as was now said, to wit, of Jerusalem, which was built upon and near Mount Zion. He saith Zion rather than Jerusalem, to intimate that he loved Jerusalem for Zion’s sake, or for the temple, which is oft said to be in Zion; which place he loved and chose for his peculiar dwelling-place.

More than all the dwellings of Jacob; more than all other places of the land of Canaan in which the Israelites dwelt. For although the tabernacle was for a season in some other parts of the land, yet the temple, the place of God’s fixed residence, was no where but in this city.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Psalms 87:2". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https: 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

2. Gates of Zion—A metonomy for Zion itself. The gates anciently were places of public assemblage: “I will declare all thy praises in the gates of Zion.” Psalms 9:14.

The dwellings of Jacob—The comparison is well calculated to revive the ancient love of Jerusalem, and to encourage the returned exiles to take residence there.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Psalms 87:2". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https: 1874-1909.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

Psalms 87:2. The Lord loveth the gates of Zion — That is, the city of Zion, or Jerusalem, gates being often put for cities. He saith Zion rather than Jerusalem, to intimate that he loved Jerusalem for Zion’s sake, or for the temple, which he chose for his peculiar dwelling-place. He loved the gates of the temple, of the houses of doctrines, as the Chaldee interprets it; more than all the dwellings of Jacob — More than all other places of the land of Canaan in which the Israelites dwelt. For though the tabernacle was for a season in some other parts of the land, yet the temple, the place of God’s fixed residence, was nowhere but in this city of Zion. Concerning this God had said, This is my rest for ever; here will I dwell, for I have desired it. There he met his people, and conversed with them, received their homage, and showed them the tokens of his favour. From which we may infer how well he loved those gates; God indeed loved, and loves, the dwellings of Jacob. He has a gracious regard to religious families, and accepts their family worship; yet he loves the gates of Zion better; not only better than any, but better than all the dwellings of Jacob. God was worshipped in the private dwellings of Jacob; and family worship is family duty, which must by no means be neglected; yet when they come in competition, public worship is to be preferred before private.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on Psalms 87:2". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https: 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Thee. The psalm 21st is nearly similar to this. My prayer is continual. (Calmet)

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Psalms 87:2". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https: 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

The LORD. Hebrew. Jehovah. App-4.

Zion. See App-68.

Jacob. Israel viewed in connection with the natural seed, and with material blessings. See notes on Genesis 32:28; Genesis 43:6; Genesis 45:26, Genesis 45:28.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Psalms 87:2". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https: 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

The LORD loveth the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob.

The Lord loveth the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob - (Psalms 78:68). "The gates" are specified because it is against them that the enemy directs his first assault. When they are safe the city is safe. They symbolize a compact kingdom (Isaiah 60:18; Matthew 16:18).

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Psalms 87:2". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https: 1871-8.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

The LORD loveth the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob.
The Lord
78:67-69; 132:13,14; Deuteronomy 12:5; 2 Chronicles 6:6; Isaiah 14:32; Joel 2:32

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Psalms 87:2". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https:

Commentary by J.C.Philpot on select texts of the Bible

Psalm 87:2

"The Lord loves the gates of Zion."Psalm 87:2

What are gates for? Two purposes—entrance and exit. And Zion, also, has her gates of exit and entrance; she has her gates of access to God, entrance into the presence of the Most High; "the door of hope," opened in "the valley of Achor." And who has opened the door; or, rather, who has not only opened it and made it, but himself IS the Door? "I am the Door," says Jesus. And was not "the door" opened through his rent flesh? As the Apostle speaks—"Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way, which he has consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh." Through his bleeding wounds, through his pierced side, through his mangled feet and hands, there is now access to God—

"A door of hope is opened wide

In Jesus" pierced hands and side."

Is there any other access to God, but through the slaughtered Lamb? "Through him we have access by one Spirit unto the Father." There is no other; for he is "the way, the truth, and the life, and no man comes to the Father but by him." Is not this an open way? Does not the soul through this door "walk in and out and find pasture," and enter into the immediate presence of God? Do you, my friends, ever find access to God, a heart to pray, a sense of acceptance in prayer, an open door, and power to enter therein? What opens it? Merit? Set up merit, and we are all damned to a man. It is not merit, great or little; it is the blood of the Lamb which alone has opened a way for poor lost sinners to draw near to God.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

Philpot, Joseph Charles. "Commentary on Psalms 87:2". Commentary by J.C.Philpot on select texts of the Bible. https:

Lectionary Calendar
Sunday, December 15th, 2019
the Third Week of Advent
To report dead links, typos, or html errors or suggestions about making these resources more useful use our convenient contact form
Powered by Lightspeed Technology