|English: Greek Root of covenant (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
Father God Jesus creator , sustainer, miracle and covenant maker we come to you now and ask that you might fill us afresh with your Holy Spirit ...breathe into us now that we might have hope in you the hope of glory...in Jesus name amen
Colossians 1:24-29 (New International Version)
Paul's Labor for the Church
24Now I rejoice in what was suffered for you, and I fill up in my flesh what is still lacking in regard to Christ's afflictions, for the sake of his body, which is the church.
25I have become its servant by the commission God gave me to present to you the word of God in its fullness— 26the mystery that has been kept hidden for ages and generations, but is now disclosed to the saints.
27To them God has chosen to make
known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.
28We proclaim him, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone perfect in Christ.
29To this end I labor, struggling with all his energy, which so powerfully works in me.
Genesis 1 (The Message)
26-28 God spoke: "Let us make human beings in our image, make them reflecting our nature
At the beginning of time God the Father created Adam and Eve in His image, male and female He created, He created because God is a God of relationship.
You could say this was Jesus's first miracle, forming mankind from the dust !!
John 1:1-2 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God.
Although The foremost miracle of Jesus was too create from nothing the dust from which we are formed
Is'nt the sun amazing ? blazing away every day, keeping us warm and cosy, depicting the seasons and changes and weather !!
Have you ever wondered how the suns ignite themselves ? how the miracle of takes place ?
Have you ever wondered how our sun ignited itself and how it just happened to be at the exact distance and exact size and exact orbit to sustain life ?
As Christians we do not believe that the sun sustains life but we believe that the Son sustains life, who in turn sustains the sun
Have you ever wondered how a person can become a Christian without Christ ?
It would be impossible would'nt it ?
How can a person be a reflection of God and made in the image of God if there is no God ?
How can a person be ignited by God ...without God ?
In this nurture group we are going to go back to basics and look at "God in us "
You see the Ark of the Testimony would be no testimony without God
The Ark of the Covenant would not be a covenant, for God is the covenant maker
The Ark was simply a box, a wooden box, a box made of acacia wood,
What made the Ark special was that it had Gods Prescence
You could say " It had Christ In "
Gods prescence was there and where Gods prescence is we find blessing, but in the hands of the wrong person that which is a blessing can become a stumbling block
So how do we see Gods prescence and how do we know Gods prescence ?
You could say that God ignited that box, .... nothing about the box , it was what was inside the box that made it special
Theres nothing really special about our sun, its really an insignificant star compared to some, but what makes it special is that it is used to sustain life by the creater of all
Theres nothing really special about our earth ...again its an insignificant planet compared to some, but what makes the earth special ?
Isa 66:1 Thus saith the LORD, The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: where is the house that ye build unto me? and where is the place of my rest?
King David wanted to build a house for the Lord to dwell !!
He wanted to house God in a place of worship !!
But God cannot be contained, Jesus cannot be contained...the Holy Spirit cannot be contained !!
The Ark could never contain Jesus, but we have Gods prescence, His shekinah Glory,
His visible presence....here we have the visible manifestation of God, a visible God in the Shekinah Glory
When Gods prescence was there in the Ark we could see the effects, we have evidence of the prescence of God by what we see with our eyes.
We of course can read about the Ark and how God blessed those around, we see how He did not bless the Philistines
Mark 12:36 For David himself said by the Holy Ghost, The LORD said to my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool.
We note that Uzzah was smited when he reached out to steady the Ark
We note that dagon fell face down before the Ark and we read many other references that speak of the prescence of God, the visible manifestation of a Living God
We are the very evidence of a life giving God...but what of the prescence of God ?
You see to be a Christian is to have Christ in us and to have Christ in us we need to ask Jesus Christ into our hearts and lifes...this is the start of an ongoing relationship that lasts throughout this lifetime and into the next
Each day we present ourselves to the Lord as an army of ordinary people...
We start again each new day and we ask for the continued ongoing help of the Lord to sustain us and renew us and to give us strength
For We are saved but we are being saved, we are restored but we are being restored.
We are renewed but we are being renewed, we are converted but we are being converted.
We are healed but we are being healed, we are transformed but we continue to be transformed..
We are delivered but we continue to be delivered, we are evolved into the spiritual realm, but we continue to evolve as Christians, ever changing from one glory to another
We are the reflection of Christ as Christians becasue we have " Christ in us "
The hope of glory, who is our glory and the glory in us
As the Ark of the Covenant maker is nothing without God, so we too cannot reflect God unless we have God in us
As God bowed down and put His mouth to the nostrils of Adam, He kneels down and blows new life into bones, into flesh and blood, into the valley of dry bones and we rise up like Lazarus into new life
An army of ordinary people rise up in God and reflect His glory becasue they have the Glory of God in them, the prescence of God ..the Shekinah Glory
The covenant maker, the miracle maker begins His work in and through ordinary people
Only He can create out of nothing and mould and shape a life, sometimes its needs the waters of that life to stir and sometimes it takes a Rock to fall into that water to make the waters of the heart stir up , sometimes it takes a mighty wind to stir up the waters and to cause a parting...
Sometimes it is only in the storms of life that the work of the miracle maker...the great covenant maker can start to dig deep into a heart and to remould and reshape a life
When this happens the Covenant becomes the testimony, a Christian carries with them a testimony of God in the prescence of God and with God in them
What a miracle to have God in us ? what a miracle to have the testimony of what the Lamb has done ? what a miracle to have the testimony of the Lamb ?
What a miracle to carry the Ark of the Testimony ? to have God in our mortal bodies !!
To have Gods shekinah glory in us that reflects Him ? as the Ark was filled with Gods prescence so we too can be filled with Gods prescence !!
This is not a once off thing that happened many years ago, this can be an everyday experience as we open up ouselves....our container...our box....our tent ....our hearts ...our lifes to God who is Jesus
The one who was and is and is to come...
He was there before you became a Christian...He has always been and always existed
Here is Here now and in you if you know Christ as your savior and He will always be there
But God The Holy Spirit wants to fill and shine through you that you might be ignited by His shekinah glory
David the King knew of Gods Holy Spirit and the worship and inspiration that the Holy Spirit spoke into Davids life and heart...Davids life became a reflection of God Jesus the Great Shepherd God and miracle maker
Davids life spoke out of Jesus God Father and we see the visible evidence of a living God through David and his Life
David cries out in Psalm 51:11
Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me.
RESTORE UNTO ME THE JOY OF YOUR SALVATION...
GOD CAN AND DOES RESTORE HOPE ...
GOD CAN AND DOES RESTORE LIFE ...
GOD CAN AND DOES RESTORE HEARTS ...
GOD CAN AND DOES RESTORE AN EMPTY VESSEL ...
GOD CAN AND DOES FILL AN EMPTY VESSEL ...
GOD CAN AND DOES FILL THE ARK ...
GOD CAN FILL YOU AND ME ...
David shone like a star but who ignited the star ?
Some are afraid that they will loose their identity if they were to ask Holy Jesus God Father and miracle covenant maker into their lifes, but in fact the reverse is true
When you become a Christian God draws out of you your true self and as you find your identity in Christ so Christ finds His place in you and draws out your true character and works through your real personality.
God simply wants you to be you because He loves you as you are and for who He knows you really are inside...
Not a world robotic view of the perfect person with more makeup than skin ..always looking perfect in every way and having all the signs of outward success
But a person who is in Christ reflecting Him through you and as you seek to be more like Him your own character and personality shines out , because thats what God made you to be..YOU
He made you to be like you are that He might use you as you are and love you as you are
And He can draw out of your character and personality which is the way He made you in the first place to also reflect His prescence
Once you find your identity in Father God Jesus covenant miracle maker and creator then you will find your true identity, and your true character and personality
Because God is more interested in character bulding than in appearance
He is more interested in personality shaping and strengthening than He is in you being perfect as the world defines perfect
He is more interested in what goes on deep down in your heart than He is in your hair style
He wants to shine through you as you are and to draw out the " REAL YOU "
He wants to breathe His breath into you so that you might rise up like the bones in the valley
Ezekiel 37:1-14 (New International Version)
The Valley of Dry Bones
1 The hand of the LORD was upon me, and he brought me out by the Spirit of the LORD and set me in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones.
2 He led me back and forth among them, and I saw a great many bones on the floor of the valley, bones that were
very dry. 3 He asked me, "Son of man, can these bones live?"
I said, "O Sovereign LORD, you alone know."
4 Then he said to me, "Prophesy to these bones and say to them, 'Dry bones, hear the word of the LORD! 5 This is what the Sovereign LORD says to these bones: I will make breath [a] enter you, and you will come to life.
6 I will attach tendons to you and
make flesh come upon you and cover you with skin; I will put breath in you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the LORD.' "
7 So I prophesied as I was commanded. And as I was prophesying, there was a noise, a rattling sound, and the bones came together, bone to bone. 8 I looked, and tendons and flesh appeared on them and skin covered them, but there was no breath in them.
9 Then he said to me, "Prophesy to the breath; prophesy, son of man, and say to it, 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe into these slain, that they may live.'
" 10 So I prophesied as he commanded me, and
breath entered them; they came to life and stood up on their feet—a vast army.
11 Then he said to me: "Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They say, 'Our bones are dried up and our hope is gone; we are cut off.' 12 Therefore prophesy and say to them: 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: O my people,
I am going to open your graves and bring you up from them; I will bring you back to the land of Israel. 13 Then you, my people, will know that I am the LORD, when I open your graves and bring you up from them.
14 I will put my Spirit in you and you will
live, and I will settle you in your own land. Then you will know that I the LORD have spoken, and I have done it, declares the LORD.' "
('Our bones are dried up and our hope is gone; we are cut off.)
What are bones without the miracle maker ?
Have you lost hope ? let God breathe that new life into bones gone dry !!
Let Him fill you with His shekinah glory !! to be a testimony of the living God !!
Lord Father Jesus and Miracle maker of the covenant we pray to you now and knowing that you are listening we speak out to you in faith In Jesus name amen
I'm going to use words now that might be familiar to you as a pray to God and I challenge you to speak out these words, we are going to speak them out to God rather than to someone else
Jesus I ask you into my life today
Jesus you are faithful you are by my side from this day forward;and have always been and always will be there.
And I will follow you ....for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer,
in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish,
With my body I honour you, all that I am I give to you,
and all that I have I share with you, within the love of God,
Pour down your Holy Spirit .' In Jesus name amen