What is Zion? What is Mount Zion? What is the Biblical meaning of Zion?


Question: "What is Zion? What is Mount Zion? What is the Biblical meaning of Zion?"

Psalms 87:2-3, "The LORD loves the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob. Glorious things are said of you, O city of God." Occurring over 150 times in the Bible, the word “Zion” essentially means “fortification.” In the Bible, the Zion is both the city of David and the city of God. As the Bible progresses, the word Zion transitioned from referring primarily to a physical city, to a more spiritual context.

The first mention of the word “Zion” in the Bible is 2 Samuel 5:7, "Nevertheless, David captured the fortress of Zion, the City of David.” Zion, therefore, was originally the name of the ancient Jebusite fortress in the city of Jerusalem. Zion came to stand not only for the fortress but also for city in which the fortress stood. After David captured "the stronghold of Zion," Zion was then called "the City of David" (1 Kings 8:1; 1 Chronicles 11:5; 2 Chronicles 5:2).

When Solomon built the Temple in Jerusalem, the word Zion expanded in meaning to include also the Temple and the area surrounding it (Psalms 2:6; 48:2,11-12; 132:13). Zion was eventually used as a name for the city of Jerusalem, the land of Judah, and the people of Israel as a whole (Isaiah 40:9; Jeremiah 31:12; Zechariah 9:13).

The most important use of the word Zion is in a theological sense. Zion is used figuratively of Israel as the people of God (Isaiah 60:14). The spiritual meaning of Zion is continued in the New Testament, where it is given the Christian meaning of God's spiritual kingdom, the heavenly Jerusalem (Hebrews 12:22; Revelation 14:1). 1 Peter 2:6, "See, I lay a stone in Zion, a chosen and precious cornerstone, and the one who trusts in Him will never be put to shame."

Recommended Resource: Bible Answers for Almost all Your Questions by Elmer Towns.

Related Topics:

What is Zionism / Christian Zionism?

What is Messianic Judaism?

What is the Abrahamic Covenant?

Why do Jews and Arabs / Muslims hate each other?

Should Christians support the nation of Israel?

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What is Zion? What is Mount Zion? What is the Biblical meaning of Zion?