Amidah-Tisha b’Av-Yerushalayim-The People’s City
Rabbi Shmuel bar Nachmani said: We have an aggadic tradition that Jerusalem will not be rebuilt until it is the time for the ingathering of the exiles. And if a person should say that the exiles have already been gathered in, yet Jerusalem has not been rebuilt, do not believe him. Why” Because it is written, “God is the builder of Jerusalem,” and following this,“He will gather the outcasts of Israel (Psalms 147:2).” (Midrash Tanchumah, Noach 11)
Jerusalem will be rebuilt for the people who have been gathered from across the globe. It is the city of the people. It is the city for the people. When we pray that the Builder of Jerusalem return to His city, we are reminding Him that it is His city through us, His people. We are praying that all of Israel be gathered, unified before the gates of the Holy City, declaring that it is His city, so that He will be moved to restore the Divine Presence to where it belongs. We picture ourselves gathered in unity before the gates of Jerusalem inviting God’s Presence back into the Holy City.