(From the Introduction of Enter His Gates written by Charles Stanley)
In Bible times, city gates had tremendous importance in the natural world as well as significant spiritual meaning:
* Because of their central location, gates were spoken of as symbols of power and authority.
* Gates were the focus of enemy attack (Judges 5:8; 1 Samuel 23:7; Ezekiel 21:15, 22).
* People gathered there to hear the reading of God’s Word (Neh. 8:1, 3), and both legal and judicial transactions occurred at the city gates (Zech. 8:16).
* In Israel, words from God’s law were — and still are — inscribed on or above the gates of private homes (Deut. 6:9).
* To “possess the gates” was to possess the city (Gen. 24:60), and that is why God promised Abraham that his descendants would possess the gates of their enemies (Gen. 22:17).
* Gates were vital to the defense of cities in ancient Israel because they protected against enemy invasion. In the event of attack, the city gates were closed to shut out the enemy.
Exactly how many gates were in the city of Jerusalem is unknown because the number probably varied from century to century, but each have of Jerusalem mentioned in the Bible has spiritual significance and is symbolic of a spiritual “gate” in our lives. If you fail to maintain your spiritual “gates,” you, too, are open to attack by the enemy. That is why this devotional guide focuses on rebuilding your spiritual gates.
God has set before up twelve months of the coming year. There months are precious gateways to spiritual growth and development. Each month during this year, we will strengthen a different spiritual gate.
Are you ready to join me this yearlong spiritual quest?
Go through the gates! (Isa. 62:10)