Sunday, February 27, 2011
1 Samuel 6:20
"Who can stand in the presence of the LORD, this holy God?"
There is no denying that the Lord's presence does powerful things. Those who even dare to approach him boldly or carelessly perish in his presence. To those in Beth Shemesh, 50,070 men perished just from looking into the ark where the Lord's presence dwelled! It is no wonder why they uttered this question in 1 Samuel 6, for indeed who can stand in the presence of the Lord, this holy God?
To what then can we speak of the Lord's presence with us today? The Lord dwells within His temple not built by human hands but by His own. His presence is made known to all those who call upon Him, that through His Son he is known to us and that through the Holy Spirit he dwells within us. You are that Temple who trust in the Lord. That same power which raised Christ and led Moses and his people out of Egypt dwells in those who would receive it. You are the place where Heaven meets Earth.
It comes as no surprise, then, that the closer one gets to God in Christ, the more one dies inwardly to the flesh and lives eternally in the spirit. God is so holy, that is wholly other, that to receive him all at once would be death. Confronted with our own sin and shame, we again ask "Who can stand?" None other than whomever Christ raises.