Circling the Gates of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem

Gil Ronen & Yoni Kempinski report in Arutz Sheva on the monthly Circling of the Gates, which includes a video clip:

Thousands of people took part Sunday evening in “The Circling of the Gates” – Sivuv Shearim in Hebrew – a renewal of an ancient custom that expresses, in our age, a yearning for the Holy Temple.

Sivuv Shearim involves making pilgrimage to Jerusalem, walking around the Temple Mount and stopping at each of its gates.

The event takes place every Hebrew month on Erev Rosh Hodesh, the eve of the first day of the month. The route followed by the participants passes through the Muslim quarter of the Old City. The participants stop at every gate and recite a section of the Tenth Psalm.

The event usually draws about 3,000 participants. Its organizers dream of the day in which 20,000 people take part, placing the Temple Mount on the public agenda for the entire Jewish nation.

It reminds us of two beautiful Psalms:

“That in the gates of the daughter of Zion I may rejoice in your salvation.” (Ps. 9.14 ESV)

“Walk about Zion, go around her, number her towers, consider well her ramparts, go through her citadels, that you may tell the next generation that this is God, our God forever and ever. He will guide us forever.” (Ps. 48.12-14 ESV)

6 thoughts on “Circling the Gates of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem”

  1. My wife and I tried doing this back in Jan/Feb 2003. Our new friends in the Jewish Quarter suggested we do it. For two non-Jews it was very overwhelming. In fact, too overwhelming. If only we had chaperons to “guide” us. It was the cause of our only disagreement on this trip. We ended up leaving the Golden Gate rally area mad at each other. The next day I explored the Kidron Valley and the Mount of Olives, which I saw from the prayer route. They were in the dark and looking wonderfully mysterious and inviting. How could I not go and explore?! Ellen spent the day painting the gardens and greenery of the west side of the Hinnon. So some good came out of our day apart and we both look forward to returning for me to get dirty on a dig and her to paint and sketch nearby. And I hope we’ll get to try the “Circling” again, but with chaperons. Mike Harney

  2. II Chronicles 5:2 refers to the City of David as Zion. When reading Psalm 48:2, it appears that the area of the Temple Mount becomes an extension of the City of David (on the sides of the north). Perhaps the Circling of the Gates should include walking around the City of David.
    P.S. Hi Mike, May you and Ellen soon return to Jerusalem!

  3. Hi Dr. Ritmeyer & Bud, I’ve been there two more times. Once in 2005 with Sar-El/Volunteers For Israel (I was in the IDF for three weeks! and in Jerusalem the other two weeks) And in 2009 with Ellen. When we get moved out of Alaska and to Michigan, we hope to visit every year. By The Way, we hope to have a mother-in-law apartnent in our new house to open up to Torah and Bible scholars AND ARCHAEOLOGISTS who might be passing thru the area (hint-hint Dr. Ritmeyer) Or maybe someday, the three of us could meet in Jerusalem and I’ll buy lunch at my favorite place in the Jewish Quarter. Can’t wait to go back! Mike Harney

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