top of page

Gates and Courts

Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise. Give thanks to him, bless his name. Psalms 100:4 NRSV

In the days of the Tabernacle, an outer enclosure of white linen surrounded the Tent of Meeting with a bright gate for entrance. This structure was built so it could travel with the people on their journeys; they were to carry the place of worship with them. Later, as the nation was united in a permanent location, Jerusalem, Solomon erected the first Temple. Like the Tabernacle before, this more ornate place of worship also had gates and courtyards leading into the outer area for the people and the inner places only the priests could enter.

As the people came to offer their sacrifices, they were to enter with thanksgiving already in their hearts. Yes, they were coming to bring their gifts to God–a small token of what God had given them–but more importantly, they were to arrive joyfully with humble and repentant hearts, the gift God most desired.

The equivalent for us today might be having gratitude and praise as we turn into the church driveway. But it doesn’t start there. The psalmist didn’t mean they would only have this attitude of thanksgiving when they came to church, but they were to carry it permanently in their hearts. If you read the Psalm from the beginning, there’s no mention of gates and courts, but anytime we come into his presence.

Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth.

Worship the Lord with gladness; come into his presence with singing. (v. 1-2)

We come with that song in our hearts because we “Know that the Lord is God. It is he that made us, and we are his; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.” He is our Creator, Guardian, and coming as Jesus, our Savior. Gone is the need for animal sacrifice; Jesus did that for us by bearing our sins on the cross. Thanks to the Holy Spirit, we have passed beyond the gates and courts into the temple; we are constantly in God’s presence. What a humbling realization and reason to give praise and thanksgiving.

Father, thank you for our Son who offered himself for the atonement of our sins and for sending the Holy Spirit. We confess we fail to give you the praise and thanksgiving you rightly deserve. Father, forgive us; help us remember the lengths you have gone to redeem us. Not only today, as we head to church, but all our days, may we make a joyful noise, worship with gladness, and give you all the glory. In Christ Jesus, we pray. Amen.


Pastor Tim

3 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page