“And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people and God himself will be with them as their God.”
As the New Year 2021 dawned, I listened to Pastor Mary speak at Homer’s Coffeehouse. She used the passage above to explain that for us who believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, God has made this promise. We dwell with God and he dwells with us. For me, to know there is a future day, an amazing future day, that God and I will share a dwelling place, gives me internal reassurance and comfort.
Shortly after this teaching we read John 15:4 in our house church study, where the scripture says “Abide in me and I will abide in you”. These are the words of Jesus as he is leaving the Upper Room to willingly serve God and allow for our salvation.
Contemplating words like “dwell” and “abide” conjures up in my mind wonderfully peaceful and calm places to hang-out. Often, in my home I can dwell in front of the fireplace with a book, watching a movie, or holding hands with my wife Jerri.
The dwelling described by the Apostle John however, is a description of being together with God on a new earth, a new heaven, a new Jerusalem all as a result of the return of the Messiah. I often cannot connect with this idea of dwelling with the Lord, but when I pray, study the scripture, and do Kingdom things I get similar feelings of peace and calm. So logically the spiritual maturity that comes from God, is to dwell and practice more of the things that can reveal for us glimpses of the future state of dwelling promised in Revelation.
Abide to me is a stronger word. I fondly remember my children who wanted to hug and snuggle with their “Pops”. Still today knowing these are children that God created for me to parent has a keen sense of abiding. The power of this word ABIDE is when Christ defines the word as a two-way commitment. “Abide in me and I in YOU”.
Friends, our Lord Jesus in His final words to His followers, even as He was headed to the cross, asks us to remember what He has taught us and then we will share an intimacy with Him. The Holy Spirit will help nurture you toward always being with Him. Always abiding with Him and He will always ABIDE in you.
Byron Whetstone, Executive Director