Knowing His Presence
"For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them." (Matthew 18:20, KJV)
This promise of Jesus has proved precious to countless believers throughout the ages, whether to those hiding from antagonistic authorities, or to the faithful few gathering for prayer. For all Christians, however, it is the heart of what our faith and life should be about: being assured of His promised presence.
Throughout the Bible, it was God’s presence that transformed things – and people! When Moses came down from Mount Sinai, having met with God, the most obvious thing to the people was that he had been in the presence of God; in fact, his face was so radiant that he had to put a veil over it. This presence became so precious to him that he cried out to God, "If your Presence does not go with us, do not send us up from here" (Exodus 33:15).
But not only does God want us to know His presence (for that in itself could be a fearful thing), He wants us to enjoy His presence. When we know we are right with Him, there is nothing to fear, only everything to enjoy. This is reflected in the account of the seventy elders going up the mountain with Moses to meet with God, where it is said of them, "they saw God, and they ate and drank" (Exodus 24:11). What a wonderful picture this is of how God wants us to be at ease and truly enjoy His presence. We are not being unholy or presumptuous if we find God’s presence enjoyable – it is what He promises to us!
"Great!" "Fantastic!" "Brilliant!" "Wow!" are modern words of enjoyment. This is the sort of heart that God wants to find in us as we come into His presence, whether on our own or in our meetings. Today, stop in the midst of your busyness and take time to remember the promise of His presence – and enjoy it!
After two days he will revive us; on the third day he will restore us, that we may live in his presence. Let us acknowledge the LORD; let us press on to acknowledge him. (Hosea 6:2-3)
Copyright © 2017 Martin Manser and Mike Beaumont