Thursday, January 24, 2013

Dominus Flevit-the Lord has wept

plaque at entrance to church area
Dominus Flevit Church is a small Fransciscan church located on the upper western slope of the Mount of Olives. Dominus Flevit means "the Lord has wept" and tradition has it that this is the site mentioned in Luke 19:41

   LK 19:37 When he came near the place where the road goes down the Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of disciples began joyfully to praise God in loud voices for all the miracles they had seen:

  38 "Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!"
"Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!"

 39 Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, "Teacher, rebuke your disciples!"

 40 "I tell you," he replied, "if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out."
 

41 As he approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it 42 and said, "If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace--but now it is hidden from your eyes. 43 The days will come upon you when your enemies will build an embankment against you and encircle you and hem you in on every side. 44 They will dash you to the ground, you and the children within your walls. They will not leave one stone on another, because you did not recognize the time of God's coming to you."

Luke 19: 37-44 (NIV)

The architecture of this church is based on that of a teardrop. The ampulla shaped pillars or 'tear cups' of the church is said to collect the tears of Jesus.The current Dominus Flevit Church was commissioned by the Franciscans and designed by Italian architect Anton Barluzzin. It was build on the site of a 7th century church. It was constructed between 1953-1955, making it one of the newest church in Jerusalem.

Dominus Flevit church

altar inside the church

from the church, a view of the Temple Mount

this would have been the view that Jesus saw that day....

looking north, the walls of the Temple Mount with the Golden Gate and St. Stephen's Gate
Greek Orthodox Church
 During the building of the church, some ancient Jewish tombs were discovered  beneath the earlier church.

to the right of the church, tombs containing ossuaries

ossuaries

possible remains of a Byzanthine church


 more photos here

The shortest verse in the Bible is John 11:35, when "Jesus wept" over the death of Lazarus. In this site is another record of our Lord crying. This put to rest the fallacy of the maxim 'real men don't cry'. However it brings to the front the questions of when and where have we cried recently. We often cry because of circumstances or problems. How many of us cried like Jesus who when he saw the splendor of the Second Temple and Jerusalem cried because in spite of all the trappings of outward religiosity, these people and the city is doomed for destruction because they have turned away from God.

Jesus cried. Do we cry for the state of our own country? Do we shed tears for a rich country full of natural resources stripped of its resources to the blink of destruction due to her leaders and corrupt officials. Do we cry for the corruption of the rule of law and its failure to protect her citizens? Do we cry for parents whose children were kidnapped and their fate unknown? Do we still possess hearts of compassion that cry for the weak, poor, oppressed and exploited? Do we have tears for those who are spiritually blinded, led on the garden path to eternal damnation? Or are we so desensitized to the human condition, and are so self-centred that we only cry for ourselves?

Let us look at our own heart to see whether we have enough compassion to shed tears.

May God have mercy

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2 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for the picture you posted of "looking north, the walls of the Temple Mount with the Golden Gate and St. Stephen's Gate". I have scoured images looking for a picture like this one. A mount can be seen in the picture which has been referred to as Golgotha’, meaning ‘The Place of the Skull’ where Jesus was crucified.

Thank You Again

3:50 PM  
Blogger Alex Tang said...

hi,

where is this mount that you identified? Will love to know.

6:44 PM  

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