City Of God Or Man (first 3.9.13)
Genesis 11,4: "... 'let us build ourselves a city and a tower with its top reaching heaven. Let us make a name for ourselves, so that we don't get scattered all over the world.' "
Genesis 11,8: "Yahweh scattered them thence all over the world, and they stopped building the city."
Deuteronomy 12,11: "To the place chosen by Yahweh your God as a home for his name, to that place you must bring all the things that I am laying down for you..." See also 1Kings5,5; Jeremiah 7,11.
Psalm 46,4-6: There is a river whose streams bring joy to God's city, it sanctifies the dwelling of the Most High. God is in the city, it cannot fall; at break of day God comes to the its rescue. Nations are in uproar, kingdoms are tumbling, when he raises his voice the earth crumbles away.
2Corinthians 6,16: "The Temple of God cannot compromise with false gods, and that is what we are- the temple of the living God. We have God's word for it: I shall fix my home among them and live among them; I will be their [one!] God and they will be my people."
The God of the bible, of Israel, of the Holy Spirit, is more insistent and demanding than we fleshy human beings are willing to admit.
All thanks and praise be to Him, that His Spirit still strives with us, and still insists on his ways and purposes (Genesis 6,3. Galatians 5,17).
Otherwise, we might get so comfortable, that no one among us could be corrected, and saved.
He strove with the the people of Babel and then stopped them from making the city of man, the city of confusion, the city of flesh over Spirit.
God, who is Spirit, insisted to them that only his name would be lifted on high unto the heavenlies.
One day, he will completely stop striving with us, and thrawting our earthly building projects, and that day will be the day of his purifying judgment. (cf Zechariah 14,9).
Our God is an awesome God, and an insistent God too.
He insists that our fallen world seek more than it's own building plans, and instead choose in faith to live now and in the future in his eternal city, the city of God, the city of living faith (of Zion, the Jerusalem to be, Galatians 4,26, the Jerusalem coming down from heaven, Revelation 21,2).
He insists that this city, has one Temple, the Temple of the one and living God. But watch out- if His temple or "our" church is not fit for his presence, his name and his people, He leaves just as he left the Jerusalem temple! (see Ezekiel 9-11 and also James 3,11: "A spring [or a church] cannot pour both fresh water and brakish water from the same opening.")
He insists also, as part of his merciful offer of salvation, that we become living stones in his temple (1Peter2,5), built into his Spiritual house-people, and that we know who we become by our faith in him.
And he also insists, again by his striving with our flesh and our paltry faith, that we as church and as individuals become fitting places for his presence, that is Temples of the Holy Ghost (2Corinthians 6,16, and 6,19).
And then he goes even further and insists that we become what he prophesied all of us human beings to be (Exodus 19,5), his royal priesthood and possession. This is not human honor, but a new way to be human and faithful, whereby we don't just tell people we are made in the Spiritual image and likeness of God, but we act in faith like we have His Spiritual image and Spiritual likeness. In other words we live by faith, and every word that comes from him, and offer him our living and Spiritual sacrifices, our very lives, our very selves.
And so we become a people close to him, a chosen and holy people, who by our faith testimony and faith intercession and faith offerings call down the grace of God, which brings others close to him as well.
How's that for a job for all of us?
Praise the Name of Jesus!
One God, One City, One Temple, One People
"Hear O Israel, [O world], the Lord your God is one God. (Deuteronomy 6,4)
One God, with one ultimate City, and one Spiritual Temple in that city, and one people who lift up His Name, for the salvation of all the people of the world.
Thank you Jesus, for being our one and only living God, our eternally insistent God, striving with us that we seek only You, on Your terms, in Your city.
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Tobin Hitt is the founder of the Zion Pentecost Mission. He is open to gospel partnership with all, and identifies with Paul's description of our mission as ambassadors for our king, Jesus, urging all to reconcile with God (2Cor.20-21). He resides in Cheshire, Connecticut.read more...