JERUSALEM, as the children will all remember, was the chief city of Palestine, and here it was that the temple stood, in which for so many years sacrifices were offered, pointing forward to Jesus, the Saviour of the world. In a little village a few miles from Jerusalem, he was finally born; and when he was about six weeks old, he was presented before the Lord in the temple at Jerusalem. Though he did not make this city his home, he often visited it during his life; and here it was that he was at last put to death on the cross by wicked men, and so became the great sacrifice for the sins of all the people of the world.

Since that time, the city has been almost destroyed, and though it has been partly built up, it is not and never will be the beautiful place that it was in Christ's day. If you were to visit Jerusalem now, you would not find the temple, for it was burnt long, long ago. On the spot where it stood, there is a large, curious-looking building, with a fine dome on the top. You can see it very plainly in the picture, which is a very good one of modern Jerusalem. You see the building looks a little like the pictures of the capitol at Washington. Well, this is called the "Mosque of Omar," or the "Dome of the Rock." A mosque, you know, is a Mohammedan church, and this one is called after a Moham- medan saint named Omar.

The mosque is built of marble, on a raised marble platform. The outside is covered with bright-colored tiles, which in the sun reflect all the colors of the rainbow. It has eight sides, instead of four, like our churches, and each side is sixty-seven feet long. 

The roof is supported by three rows of marble columns, one inside the other. On the top of the dome is a golden crescent, the figure of a new moon, which is the symbol of the Turkish power. We always see it on their national flag.

If you enter the mosque, directly under the dome you will be surprised to see a dark, rough stone rising up through the marble floor, five or six feet high. It looks very odd; and you will ask, "What does this mean?" You will perhaps be more surprised when you are told that it is this rock which makes the place so sacred to the Mohammedans, and which gives the mosque the name, "Dome of the Rock." On this very spot, they say, Abraham offered up Isaac or rather offered up the lamb caught in the bushes, instead of Isaac. This, too, was the threshing-floor of Ornan, where the angel from Heaven talked with David, and which David bought that he might build an altar unto the Lord there. Here, too, David's son Solomon afterward built the first temple. The story of David's meeting the angel here you will find in the 21st chapter of 1 Chronicles.

Every Friday night a curious scene takes place near this mosque. Down in a valley there are some large old stones, which the Jews say were a part of the foundation wall of their temple; and they come every Friday night at the beginning of the Sabbath, and sit in a row opposite the stones, and cry. Then they kneel down and pray, with their mouths close to the stones, because they think that the prayers whispered between the cracks and crevices of these stones, God will be sure to hear. What Jesus said about the ruins of their beautiful temple and city has come to pass. 

The thought of it made Jesus weep, and now the sight of it makes the Jews weep.  Jerusalem is a sad and silent city, with piles of rubbish and ruins in and around it. The houses are mostly crowded and dark and the streets narrow and dirty. When we sing: 

"Jerusalem, my happy home! 

Name ever dear to me!"

We do not mean the Jerusalem where Jesus was when on earth, but the Jerusalem above, the beautiful home, which he has gone to prepare for his people. You may read a description of this city in the 21st chapter of Revelation. By-and-by Jesus will come back and take all his children who have loved and obeyed him on earth to dwell with him in this beautiful city. Do you not all want a home in this New Jerusalem, which will stand forever, and never become ruined or old?

 E. B.