Once again, 'our feet stand within your gates, O Jerusalem - Jerusalem built as a city joined together' which 'unites the people of Israel to one another', and 'links heavenly Jerusalem with earthly Jerusalem.'
We have returned to the place that the Lord vowed to bestow upon the
descendants of Abraham, Father of our Nation; to the City of David, King
of Israel; where Solomon, son of David, built a Holy Temple; a Capital
City which became the Mother of all Israel; a metropolis for justice and
righteousness and for the wisdom and insights of the ancient world;
where a Second Temple was erected in the days of Ezra and Nehemiah. In
this city the prophets of the Lord prophesied; in the City the Sages
taught Torah; in this City the Sanhedrin convened in session in its
stone chamber. 'For there were the seats of Justice, the Throne of the House of David', 'for out of Zion shall go forth Torah, and the Word of the Lord from Jerusalem.'
Today, as of old, we hold fast to the truth of the words of the
Prophets of Israel, that all the inhabitants of the world shall enter
within the gates of Jerusalem: 'And it shall come to pass at the
end of days, the mountain of the House of the Lord will be well
established at the peak of the mountains and will tower above the hills,
and all the nation shall stream towards it.' Each and every nation will live in it by its own faith: 'For
all the nation will go forward, each with its own Divine Name; we shall
go in the name of the Lord our God forever and ever.' And in
this spirit the Knesset of the State of Israel has enacted a law: The
places holy to the peoples of all religions shall be protected from any
desecration and from any restriction of free access to them.
Jerusalem - peace and tranquility shall reign in the city: 'Pray
for the peace of Jerusalem; may those who love you be tranquil. May
there be peace within your walls, and tranquility within your palaces.' Out of Jerusalem, a message of peace went forth and shall yet go forth again to all the inhabitants of the earth: 'And
they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into
pruning-hooks; nation will not lift up sword against nation, nor shall
they learn war anymore.' Our sages, peace be upon them, said. In the future, The Holy One, the Blessed, will comfort Jerusalem only with peace..
From this place, we once again take this vow: 'If I forget
thee, O Jerusalem, may my right hand lose its strength; may my tongue
cleave to my palate if I do not remember you, if I do not raise up
Jerusalem at the very height of my rejoicing.'
And with all these understandings, we enter into this Covenant and write: 'We
shall bind you to us forever; we shall bind you to us with
faithfulness, with righteousness and justice, with steadfast love and
compassion.' We love you, O Jerusalem, with eternal love, with
unbounded love, under siege and when liberated from the yoke of
oppressors. We have been martyred for you; we have yearned for you, we
have clung to you. Our faithfulness to you we shall bequeath to our
children after us. Forevermore our home shall be within you.
The historic Jerusalem Covenant was written to acknowledge the miraculous return of the Jewish people to Jerusalem in June 1967.
The original Jerusalem Covenant is displayed alongside Israel's
Declaration of Independence in the Knesset and for the past twenty years
has been signed by hundreds of visiting dignitaries.