Dwelling With GOD

“LORD, who shall abide in Your tabernacle? Who shall dwell in Your holy hill? He that walks uprightly, and works righteousness, and speaks the truth in his heart. He that backbites not with his tongue, nor does evil to his neighbour, nor takes up a reproach against his neighbour. In whose eyes a vile person is contemned; but he honors them that fear the LORD. He that swears to his own hurt, and changes not. He that puts not out his money to usury, nor takes reward against the innocent. He that does these things shall never be moved.” Psalm 15:1-5 (KJB)

Dwelling In Christ Jesus

“So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.  But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His. And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. But if the Spirit of Him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, He that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by His Spirit that dwelleth in you.” Romans 8:8-11 (KJB)

For those who dwell in Jesus Christ there is no condemnation (Romans 8:1). Our dwelling in Him is due to His dwelling in us.  If His is not living in us; we are not in Him.

“Dwelling” means the place of our abiding; the place we live, where we sleep, we eat, we rest, we learn, we grow, etc.. For Him to dwell in us is for our benefit.

According to these verses, and the text of Scripture then to live in the flesh; to live a carnal life is the opposite of living or dwelling in the Spirit of Christ Jesus.

  1. They that are in the flesh cannot please God;
  2. You are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if the Spirit of God dwell in you;
  3. If you do not have the Spirit of God in you, you are not God’s;
  4. If Christ is in you the carnality of the body is dead, because of sin (Isaiah 5:18);
  5. The Spirit is life because of righteousness – the righteousness of Jesus Christ;
  6. Jesus Christ was crucified, buried, and raised to life again;
  7. Just as Jesus Christ was raised to life again, the LORD will also raise our mortal bodies by His Spirit that dwells in us.

If you are condemned by your sinful life come to Jesus Christ. Trust His work of death on the cross, His burial, and bodily resurrection.  He will redeem you, forgive you, and set you free.

Brethren in Unity

“Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!” Psalm 133:1 (KJV)

Let me let a master of teaching and preaching speak today:

“Behold.” It is a wonder seldom seen, therefore behold it! It may be seen, for it is the characteristic of real saints, – therefore fail not to inspect it! It is well worthy of admiration; pause and gaze upon it! It will charm you into imitation, therefore note it well! God looks on with approval, therefore consider it with attention. “How good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!” No one can tell the exceeding excellence of such a condition; and so the Psalmist uses the word “how” twice; – Behold how good! and how pleasant! He does not attempt to measure either the good or the pleasure, but invites us to behold for ourselves. The combination of the two adjectives “good” and “pleasant,” is more remarkable than the conjunction of two stars of the first magnitude: for a thing to be “good” is good, but for it also to be pleasant is better. All men love pleasant things, and yet it frequently happens that the pleasure is evil; but here the condition is as good as it is pleasant, as pleasant as it is good, for the same “how” is set before each qualifying word.
For brethren according to the flesh to dwell together is not always wise; for experience teaches that they are better a little apart, and it is shameful for them to dwell together in disunion. They had much better part in peace like Abraham and Lot, than dwell together in envy like Joseph’s brothers. When brethren can and do dwell together in unity, then is their communion worthy to be gazed upon and sung of in holy psalmody. Such sights ought often to be seen among those who are near of kin, for they are brethren, and therefore should be united in heart and aim; they dwell together, and it is for their mutual comfort that there should be no strife; and yet how many families are rent by fierce feuds, and exhibit a spectacle which is neither good nor pleasant!
As to brethren inspirit, they ought to dwell together in church fellowship, and in that fellowship one essential matter is unity. We can dispense with uniformity if we possess unity: oneness of life, truth, and way; oneness in Christ Jesus; oneness of object and spirit – these we must have, or our assemblies will be synagogues of contention rather than churches of Christ. The closer the unity the better; for the more of the good and the pleasant there will be. Since we are imperfect beings, somewhat of the evil and the unpleasant is sure to intrude; but this will readily be neutralized and easily ejected by the true love of the saints, if it really exists. Christian unity is good in itself, good for ourselves, good for the brethren, good for our converts, good for the outside world; and for certain it is pleasant: for a loving heart must have pleasure and give pleasure in associating with others of like nature. A church united for years in earnest service of the Lord is a well of goodness and joy to all those who dwell round about it.
From THE TREASURY OF DAVID e-Sword edition

True unity of the brethren is found through the Lord Jesus Christ.  The brethren of Christ Jesus love Him, and love one another.

He Dwells in the Heavens

“Unto Thee lift I up mine eyes, O Thou that dwellest in the heavens.” Psalm 123:1 (KJV)

To the child of God who reads this verse it should be quite obvious who the subject is.  He dwells in the heavens.  There is only one.

It is to Him that the child directs his/her gaze.  It is to Him that the child of God places their trust, and receives comfort, peace, rest, and salvation.

Yes, the Holy One dwells in the heavens, and He also dwells in the hearts of His children.

Make sure today that He not only dwells in the heavens, but that He also dwells within your heart; and that He shows through.

The Secret Place of the Most High

“He that dwelleth in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.” Psalm 91:1 (KJV)

I will let John Gills commentary speak with you concerning this verse today.

He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High,…. Or the Supreme; a title of God, who is superior to all beings, the Creator and Preserver of them, God over all, higher than the highest of angels or men; see Gen_14:22, “his secret place” is his heart, his bosom, where his only begotten Son lies; and into which he takes his people, where they are set as a seal, and who enjoy intimate communion with him; which is no other than his gracious presence, called “the secret of his presence”, Psa_31:20, which none but saints are admitted to, when his everlasting love, which was a secret in his heart, is made known unto them, and in which they also dwell, 1Jo_4:16, as they likewise do in the eternal decree of election; which perhaps is meant by “the clefts of the rock, and secret places of the stairs”, where the church is said to dwell, Son_2:14, unless rather Christ the Rock, and who may be signified by the cleft of that Moses was put into, when the goodness of the Lord passed before him, is intended; and who is the hiding place from the wind: mention is made of “the secret” of God’s “tabernacle”, Psa_27:5, in which he hides his people; alluding to the tabernacle, or temple, and the most holy place in it, called his secret place, Eze_7:22, and may refer to the ministry of the word and ordinances, where saints dwell, and enjoy much communion with God; and who are particularly under his special providence, protection, and power; which may here be designed:

shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty: who is able to do all things for his people, and is “Shaddai”, all sufficient, as this word is thought to signify; has a sufficiency of happiness in and for himself, and of provisions for all his creatures, and of power and grace for his own children: his “shadow” may be the same with his secret place, his power and protection, often in this book of Psalms called “the shadow of his wings”, Psa_17:8, in allusion to birds that overshadow and protect their young with their wings; though perhaps the allusion here may be to the shadow of a tree, and design the word and ordinances of the Lord’s house, which are a delightful, refreshing, reviving, and fruitful shadow, Son_2:3, where gracious souls dwell, and abide with great delight and pleasure. Christ, the Son of God, is sometimes compared to the shadow of a rock, or tree, which screens and shelters from heat; as he preserves his people from the heat of a fiery law, the flaming sword of justice, the wrath of God, the fiery darts of Satan, and the fury of persecutors: under this shadow do they abide or lodge all night, safe and secure, as the word (o) signifies: the Targum calls this shadow the shadow of the clouds of glory; the Arabic version, “the shadow of the God of heaven.”

From e-Sword John Gill Commentary.

It is in the heart of every believer to desire to dwell in that Secret Place.

Know That I Am the LORD

“And I will dwell among the children of Israel, and will be their God. And they shall know that I am the LORD their God, that brought them forth out of the land of Egypt, that I may dwell among them: I am the LORD their God.” Exodus 29:45-46 (KJV)

After spending time with Moses giving him direction and commandment concerning the priestly garments, their materials, making, and anointing God gives Moses the above words.

There is a woven theme throughout all the Old Testament, and that is that GOD desires that the world may “know that I AM the LORD.”  Everything that is written in the Bible is written that the world may know Him, and that He is the LORD.

The ultimate gift of GOD to the world that we might know Him, and that He is the LORD was sending His only begotten Son to die on the cross in our place; and that when we look upon Him, to Him, trusting Him we might have redemption through His blood.

Do you know today that God is the LORD?

Day 41 – Thoughts from Psalms; Home

To me, “Home” is a pleasant word, but much more than that a place of shelter, warmth.  Home is a place of family; the place you lay your head at night.  The place you dwell, and abide.  In a ship sort of way home is the anchor of your life.  You can leave home for a while, but you always come back.

The old phrase, “Home is where the heart is” is a true phrase; at least for many people it is.

My reading this morning was Psalms 80 – 93.  My comments this morning will rest in Psalm 91.  Psalm 91 makes me think of home.  I am blessed to have an earthly home.  I grew up in what many might call the “traditional family” where the father works providing for the family, though his work was mostly farm work, and I worked along side him when I was old enough to start; and the mother stayed home, tending children, and caring for the house.  Mom, also did more than housework, she even killed the chickens we raised for a good chicken dinner at times; made homemade butter, and cottage cheese.  O my, that was gooooood stuffff.

Look with me at the first two verses of Psalm 91 –

“He that dwelleth in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.  I will say of the LORD, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in Him will I trust.'” Psalm 91:1-2 (KJV)

I have already written of “Wings” in a previous post, and that being a place of safety, and rest.  Home is the place we live, we dwell there, we abide there.  It is indeed where the heart is.

The  psalmist says to us, “He that dwelleth in the secret place of the Most High…”  That “dwelling” is where we stay.  It is a place of shelter; a place of comfort; a place of protection.  This “secret place” is more than home though.  It is the place where God is; the most holy place.  It is the holy of Holies. The place of the ark of the covenant and the mercy seat.  The place for only those in intimate relationship with God the Father can dwell.

This “secret place” is the place the intimate ones never leave; but if they ever do they will quickly return.  Jesus said, “Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also” (Matthew 6:21).

The treasure, the dwelling place, the abiding place of the intimate ones with the LORD is in the “secret place of the Most High”, and those who dwell in that “secret place” are abiding “under the shadow of the Almighty”.  It is a place of shelter from the darkness of the world.  One thing we might think of as we think of “the shadow of the Almighty” is that His shadow most certainly would be a shadow of greater light.  Just as the light of the sun overpowers the light of a light bulb, so too does the light of the glory of God overpower the light of the sun.

The home of the Christian is in the presence of God, the Almighty.  He is our refuge and fortress.  Let us say with Moses, or whomever the human author of this Psalm is, “In Him will I trust”.

-Tim A. Blankenship

 

Observations From Numbers – 022011

Reading today from Numbers 34 – 36.

These chapters deal with the borders of the land for the nine tribes and the half tribe on the West side of the Jordan River when they pass over;  the cities of refuge where one who accidentally kills may flee, and stay until the death of the high priest; with intentional murder; and the final chapter of Numbers deals with a land issue for the daughters of Zelophehad.

I want to look at the issue of murder according to chapter 35 and verses 30-34,

“Whoso killeth any person, the murderer shall be put to death by the mouth of witnesses: but one witness shall not testify against any person to cause him to die.  Moreover ye shall take no satisfaction for the life of a murderer, which is guilty of death: but he shall be surely put to death.  And ye shall take no satisfaction for him that is fled to the city of his refuge, that he should come again to dwell in the land, until the death of the priest.  So ye shall not pollute the land wherein ye are: for blood it defileth the land: and the land cannot be cleansed of the blood that is shed therein, but by the blood of him that shed it.  Defile not therefore the land which ye shall inhabit, wherein I dwell: for I the LORD dwell among the children of Israel.”  Numbers 35:30-34 (KJV)

The murder of an individual shall be dealt with by the putting to death of the killer.  One is not to be put to death for the crime only by the witness of one.  There is to be no ransom paid for the murderer.  He is to be sentenced to death.  The blood that he has shed defiles the land; and God dwells in the land; “…For I the LORD dwell among the children of Israel.”.

In the society of today there are many who argue against what we call capital punishment, or the death penalty.  Supposedly it is because of the value of every man’s or woman’s life.  After all the question is, “What good does it do the one who was murdered? or his/her family?”  Certainly the family grieves over the loss of the loved one.  To plead for the life of the murderer and in the end give him his life is to place greater value on the murderer’s life than the murdered individual.  It leaves pollution upon the land; and God cannot dwell there.

The only redemption for the murderer is his own blood.

What should the Christian’s response be for murder?  To obey God’s will and His law.  We rejoice not in the death of the murderer, but we should rejoice in God’s dwelling among us in the person of His Son and His shed blood for us.

Remember to read Numbers 34 – 36 for today.

-Tim A. Blankenship

My Observations 012711

Bible Reading for today is Exodus 29-31.

Today I will be commenting only on a couple of verses from chapter 29.

“And I will dwell among the children of Israel, and will be their God.  And they shall know that I am the LORD their God, that brought them forth out of the land of Egypt, that I may dwell among them: I am the LORD their God.”  Exodus 29:45-46 (KJV)

When I read the Old Testament it is obvious to me that God is  full of grace and mercy.  It is evident in the way He deals with Israel.  He desires to dwell among His people, and He makes every way He can in His holiness and righteousness to make it possible.

What does it mean for God to “dwell among” His people.  It means very much for His people.  It means having access to the most powerful being in existence.  It means having a meaningful relationship and fellowship with that Being.  It means being a part of His family.  It means a place in eternity forever with Him.  Most of all is that He is glorified.

In the New Testament Jesus said, “I go to prepare a place for you… that where I am there you may be also” (John 14:3 & 4).  That was what the work of Jesus Christ accomplished.  The Old Testament picture is only a shadow of what Jesus was coming to do.

It is God’s desire, also, that the world know Him.  One phrase that is used over and over again in the Old Testament is “they shall know that I am the LORD…”  The prophet Ezekiel uses it over sixty times.  God has made a way through Jesus Christ to know Him.  There is no other way.

God desires it but will not force you.  He will be glorified in you.

Remember to read Exodus 29 – 31 today.

-Tim A. Blankenship

Not Of This World

I believe with all my heart that Jesus is still praying for His disciples – those who are following Him – today.  The Lord’s Prayer of John 17 is such a wonderful and powerful prayer.  It is an assuring prayer, and should be a motivator to inspire us as we pray.

Last time as we looked at verse 15 we saw that Jesus prayed that His followers not be taken out of this world, but that the Father “Keep them from the evil”.  Jesus intended His followers to be an example of godliness to the world, and we cannot do that if we become isolated and separated from everyone else.

The request we look at today is quite simple and somewhat of a statement completing the last request:

“They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.”  John 17:16 (KJV).

Jesus came into the world in the likeness of sinful men, but yet, without sin.  He came into the world as one of us, but not of the world.  He came from another place.  A place of glory and splendor.  He left all of that to come and redeem us unto Himself.  He is not of this world

In the Revelation of Jesus Christ there is a phrase which is used several times, …them that dwell upon the earth” (3:10; 6:10; 11:10; 13:8, 12, 14; 14:6;) and another similar to it, …the inhabiters of the earth” (8:13; 12:12).  These references are of course speaking of those who have no heart for God and His Son Jesus Christ.

Those who follow Him, Jesus says, ‘are not of the world’.  Not of this world we have been born again to walk in a new life, a changed life, no longer tied to the temporal things.  The heart of a believer is tied to the things of the glory of Jesus.  We are not of this world; we are still in this world, and for the purpose of showing forth the glory of Jesus our Lord and Savior.

-Tim A. Blankenship