August 28 2021
Today, Saturday August 28
“God Abides in Us”
1 John 4:11-15 “Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us. By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God.
The little word abide or dwell is used at least six times between verses twelve and sixteen in this fourth chapter of 1 John. Remember we have already learned from this chapter what God is – He is love, what God did for us – He sent His Son to die for us, and now we will look at what God is doing for us – He is abiding in us.
When you put these three great truths and facts together we can be assured that God desires a relationship with us and we can know that He loves us and we have eternal life! When you read 1 John 4:12-16, you feel like saying, "So that's what it's all about!" Because here we discover what God had in mind when He devised His great plan of salvation. To begin with, God's desire is to live in us. He is not satisfied simply to tell us that He loves us, or even show us that He loves us.
It is interesting to trace God's dwelling places as recorded in the Bible. In the beginning, God had fellowship with man in a personal, direct way (Gen. 3:8), but sin broke that fellowship. It was necessary for God to shed the blood of animals to cover the sins of Adam and Eve so that they might come back into His fellowship.
One of the key words in the Book of Genesis is walked. God walked with men, and men walked with God. Enoch (Gen. 5:22), Noah (Gen. 6:9), and Abraham walked with God (Gen. 17:1; 24:40).
But by the time of the events recorded in Exodus, a change had taken place: God did not simply walk with men, He lived, or dwelt, with them. God's commandment to Israel was, "And let them make Me a sanctuary; that I may dwell among them" (Ex. 25:8). The first of those sanctuaries was the tabernacle. When Moses dedicated it, the glory of God came down and moved into the tent (Ex. 40:33-35).
God dwelt in the camp, but He did not dwell in the bodies of the individual Israelites. Unfortunately, the nation sinned and God's glory departed (1 Sam. 4:21). But God used Samuel and David to restore the nation; and Solomon built God a magnificent temple. When the temple was dedicated, once again the glory of God came to dwell in the land (1 Kings 8:1-11).
But history repeated itself, and Israel disobeyed God and was taken into Captivity. The gorgeous temple was destroyed. One of the prophets of the Captivity, Ezekiel, saw the glory of God depart from it (Ezek. 8:4; 9:3; 10:4; 11:22-23).
Did the glory ever return? Yes—in the Person of God's Son, Jesus Christ! "And the Word became flesh, and tabernacled among us, and we beheld His glory" (John 1:14). The glory of God dwelt on earth in the body of Jesus Christ, for His body was the temple of God (John 2:18-22). But wicked men nailed His body to a cross. They crucified "the Lord of glory" (1 Cor. 2:8). All this was part of God's thrilling plan, and Christ arose from the dead, returned to heaven, and sent His Holy Spirit to dwell in men.
This truth is difficult to comprehend or understand but it is a great reality for us and when we believe we can experience it!