1 Kings 8:6 The Most Holy Place

Daylight in forest

The priests then brought the ark of the LORD’s covenant to its place in the inner sanctuary of the temple, the Most Holy Place, and put it beneath the wings of the cherubim. 1 Kings 8:6 

Shortly after becoming king of Israel, Solomon chose to begin building the temple to God that his father, David, had wanted to build, but was not allowed to. After a lot of work of building the building, the priests brought the ark of the covenant into the building and placed it in the Most Holy Place.

At the time the ark of the covenant represented God’s presence and His agreement with the Israelites. It was an agreement that if the people followed His commands, He would be their God and take care of them. In it there was a copy of the ten commandments, a jar of manna, and the budding branch. This represented what the people had to do, God’s provision and God’s leadership.

This ark was placed in the Most Holy Place. It was the place that God would directly dwell when among the people. It was behind a huge curtain and was a place of no sin and only the high priest was allowed in once a year. It was God’s place.

A thousand years later, Jesus had died upon the cross, ripping the curtain in two and open and making a way for every person to go into the Most Holy Place where God is. The new location for God’s place to dwell was no longer in a temple, but in the heart of a person.

When one seeks forgiveness and believes in Jesus, his heart is made pure and holy–the Most Holy Place. It becomes the dwelling place of God. There is now a covenant–an agreement–between God and the person placed in the heart. There is also a sign of the provision for forgiveness and eternal life placed in the heart.

Believe in the work that Jesus did for you to remove your sins and give you eternal life. Accept His work in your life and become a believer. Do not allow the covenant of sin of this world to take a place in your heart.

As a believer, you now have God’s covenant placed in your heart. Your heart has become the Most Holy Place–the dwelling place of God. God is with you and will not leave you.

Believe in Jesus and allow God’s presence to be in your life daily.

I pray today that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will allow God to rule in your life; that you will allow God’s presence to fill your life; and that your heart will be the Most Holy Place unto God. 

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1 Samuel 4:22 The Glory Has Departed

Sun going down

She said, “The Glory has departed from Israel, for the ark of God has been captured.” 1 Samuel 4:22 

When there is a light shining in a room, it can be seen by everyone in the room, regardless of how bright or dim the light is. A dim light can still break through and overcome the darkness. However, when that light is removed from the room or put out, there is no longer any light to be seen and it is completely dark.

Israel had chosen to walk away from God and its religious leaders were not pointing the way back to God. The Israelites had chosen to fight against the Philistines and push them out of their country, yet, the Philistines had won the battle and captured the ark of the covenant. At the same time, Eli and his sons were killed in the battle. They had been the prophets and leaders of the nation.

Eli’s daughter-in-law stated that the Glory had departed Israel. She was talking about God had departed and abandoned Israel. Israel had allowed the ark of the covenant to be captured. This was God’s resting place among the people.

Although the ark of the covenant no longer exists, there is a resting place for God. That resting place is the hearts of men and women. When a person has given his life to God, God makes his heart a resting place and there is glory in his life.

There are times when people allow their hearts to be captured by this world, and force God to depart. They choose to live in sin, refusing to repent or change. As this happens, they no longer have the peace and joy of God in their lives. The glory of God has departed their lives, because God cannot live in a place with sin or where He is not on the throne.

In your life there may be times where you have allowed, or are currently allowing, your heart to be captured by the world. You had or have chosen to follow this world, rather than God. During this time you will no longer feel His presence or joy. His glory has departed.

The good news is that you can always repent and allow God back onto the throne of your heart. Allow God to be the head ruler, and not this world or its things.

With your heart God does not have to depart.

I pray today that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that God will have a place in your heart; that you will give God your whole heart; and that you will always know God’s presence in your life. 

Deuteronomy 20:1 Going To War

Young man by wall

When you go to war against your enemies and see horses and chariots and an army greater than yours, do not be afraid of them, because the LORD your God, who brought you up out of Egypt, will be with you. Deuteronomy 20:1

There are wars and battles going on all over the world. While there are many that are physical wars, with tanks, guns, and physical killings, the majority are a different type of war. They are wars of conflicts of interest, hatred for family or neighbors, temptations to do wrong and more.

People are fighting each other, even though many do not do it with guns. Often, it is each trying to get his or her own way. It is name calling, slandering, gossip, back-biting, cheating, and more.

Even though these types of wars are common, believers have, yet, another type of war. They are in a war against false beliefs, and fighting for the lives of others. The world, as a whole, is against God. They do not want the God to win.

God told the Israelites that they would go to war against their enemies. It was not a matter of ‘if they will go to battle’, but when they will go to battle. As they go to war, they were not to fear the enemy because God would be with them.

Every believer is in a battle for his own life and for the lives of others. It is a spiritual battle of an eternal consequence. The world is against the believer, and the believer is against the world. 

Although there are many believers, there are more unbelievers. The believer is not to fear the enemy–this world, despite how many there are. God is right along side of the enemy. He is fighting the battle with the believer.

Each day you go out into this world, you will be doing battle against the enemy of God. Satan and this world’s ways do not want you or God to win.

Walking into the work place or some other location, the number of enemies of God will nearly always be greater in number, than those following God. You have a mission to tell everyone about Jesus. You have a job to bring people to Jesus for salvation.

As you begin to be His witness, you have taken the first strike in this spiritual battle. Do not be afraid of their great numbers. God is with you in this war. You will win, because God never loses.

I pray today that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will be His witness in this world; that you will not fear the enemy; and that you will know God’s presence with you in this war for lives. 

Exodus 33:16 Standing Out As Different

different light bulb

“How will anyone know that you are pleased with me and with your people unless you go with us? What else will distinguish me and your people from all the other people on the face of the earth?” Exodus 33:16

Standing out as different is something that the majority of people do not like to do. They want to blend in with everyone. Standing out causes one to be seen by everyone, they are on center stage in the spotlight.

Often standing out means that a person is going against the flow. They are being different and rebellious. There is a small group of this world that thrives on being different. Currently the world tells people to be themselves, regardless of what that looks like to the rest of the world.

Yet, when some people stand out as different, they are treated differently. They are not always accepted.

As Moses was leading the people in the desert, he knew that they had to be different from the world. In order to be seen as different, they needed God’s presence to be with them. God’s presence would set them apart from the rest of the world following idols, dead gods. Moses pleaded with God for His presence to be with them.

Having God’s presence in one’s life has not changed how it looks since Moses. It sets the person apart from the rest of the world. The believer is different from the world.

People will see that a believer, who is walking in God’s presence, is different from them. The believer will walk, talk, and act differently than the rest of the world. He will walk in love, mercy, forgiveness, grace, and holiness, because God’s presence is in him, guiding him and leading him.

Too often believers look like the world. They act like the world and God’s presence is not with them. They are doing their own thing, not God’s. They are no longer distinguished from the world.

As a believer, your life should be different than that of the world. You should be distinguished with God’s  presence. You should be standing out as a shining light for the world to see.

When people look at your life, what are they seeing? Are they seeing someone just like them, like the world, not different or set apart?

Or are they seeing someone who has God’s presence in his life?

I pray today that you will know God’s presence in your life; that you will not move without God’s presence and guidance; that you will be separated from the world unto God; that you will stand out for all the world to see Jesus in your life; and that the world will know God is with you.

Ezekiel 48:35 The Lord Is There

“The distance all around will be 18,000 cubits. And the name of the city from that time on will be: THE LORD IS THERE.” Ezekiel 48:35

The very last chapter of the book of Ezekiel is a description of the size and dimensions of a new city. This will be the city of God that will last forever. It is where God will dwell with His people and its gates are one for each of the tribes of Israel.

Each city in the world is usually known for something. Los Angeles is known for trolleys, hills, and Hollywood. New York is known for Broadway, the Big Apple, and the Bronx. San Antonio is known for the Alamo and the various missions. Berlin is known for the wall. Rome is known for the Catholic church and the pope. Amsterdam is known for tulips and drugs. Paris is known for art and the waterways. Each one has some things that they are known for that are good, while some things are bad.

Every person who lives on this earth has something that they are known for also. When a person’s name is mentioned, a thought comes to other people’s minds who know that person. Some good things are that the person is generous, or a good singer, or funny, or caring, or a hard worker, or some other thing that brings a smile to others.

Others do not bring a smile to people’s faces when their name is mentioned. They are known for lying, stealing, drugs, cheating and the list goes on also.

As a believer in Jesus, you should be known for something also. When your name is mentioned, it should cause people to think of you as they will talk about the new city–The Lord Is There.

When you accepted Jesus as your Savior and repented of your sins, God made His home in you. He is there to dwell with you forever.

By your actions and words, people will know that God is there with you. They will see His love shining through. They will see His blessings pouring in and through you.  However, this can only happen if you allow God to work in and through you.

As people look at you, what do they see? Do they see just another person, like everyone else?

Or do they see where God dwells?

I pray today that you will allow God to live in you; that you will allow God to work through you; that God will shine in your life; and that people will see Jesus in you.

Isaiah 59:21 Always With You

“As for me, this is my covenant with them,” says the LORD. “My Spirit, who is on you, will not depart from you, and my words that I have put in your mouth will always be on your lips, on the lips of your children and on the lips of their descendants–from this time on and forever,” says the LORD. Isaiah 59:21

Young children love to be in the presence of their mother, when they feel that they are being loved all the time. Children often go through a time of not wanting to be away from their mother, because they love her presence. This bonding is something that occurs because of what the mother has done, not so much what the child does. A mother who truly loves her child will not allow herself to be separated from him very easily or often.

In the same way, and even more so, that a mother loves her child, God loves His children. He loves to be in their presence at all times. Mothers can, and have, left their children. God will not do that.

Once God puts His presence on a person, He does not leave of His own choosing. The only way God will leave, is if that person tells Him to leave and walks away. Even after that, God is constantly trying to get back with His lost child.

God holds true to His promises, and one of those promises is that He will always be with you. Jesus restated that same promise as He was getting ready to leave the earth.

As you are going through a difficult time in life,  you can know that God is right there with you. You can know that God will give you the words to speak in every situation.

No matter what you have done in your past, or even current history, God wants to spend time with you. He wants His presence to be with you at all times. When you accepted Jesus into your life, God made a covenant with you that He would never leave or forsake you.

You can rejoice in knowing this. You can rest assured of His presence in your life. Keep your eyes on Him and keep yourself aware of His presence each day.

I pray today that you will know God’s presence in your life; that you will listen to God’s voice; that you will speak God’s words; that you will not push God away from you or leave Him; and that you will know the joy of God being with you.

Psalm 77:11-12 When God Is Silent

I will remember the deeds of the LORD; yes, I will remember all your works and meditate on all your mighty deeds. Psalm 77:11-12

There are times in the lives of people when God is silent. They are going through difficult times that do not seem to end. The world seems to be winning the battle.

At these times, the world likes to say that God does not really exist, or is not really in control. Believers begin to wonder if they really had ever heard God speak before and if the world may be correct. Many will spend hours crying out to God for an answer, lying awake during the night in fear as they cry out to God.

Others will start to blame themselves for God being so silent. They will confess sins and ask to be forgiven on sins that had been confessed a dozen times. They may begin to question whether they are really believers or not.

The psalmist in this passage had some of those same questions. He wondered whether God would reject them forever or not. He questioned whether God had failed in His promises or not. These are the same questions people ask to this day.

However, the psalmist then says that He will remember the deeds and miracles God had done in the past. He will then focus and meditate on those good things.

There will come times in your life when you feel that God has rejected you. God will be silent and appear to be leaving you all on your own. You may be crying out to God for help and appearing to get no answer.

When these times occur, turn your focus on who God is and what He has done. Read the Bible and learn how others had times where God was silent. Learn how there were times when God seemed far away. Yet, God always fulfilled His promises.

God will not reject you. You have to be the one to walk away. During these times, God may be testing you to build your trust in Him higher. If you read the Bible, you know that God will never leave or forsake you, and that He will always fulfill His promises. Now stand on that and meditate on those things that God had done in your life.

God will speak again at the right time.

I pray today that you will know God’s presence in your life; that you will trust God is with you; that you will meditate on what God has done for you; and that you will remember all that God has done.