Friday, December 23, 2016

THE PRESENCE OF GOD

The Old Testament is filled with accounts of the wonderful blessings that came to those who walked in God’s presence.
God’s presence was so evident in Abraham’s life that even the heathen around him recognized the difference between their lives and his: “Abimelech . . . spake unto Abraham, saying, God is with thee in all that thou doest” (Genesis 21:22). This heathen king was saying, “There’s something different about you, Abraham. God is with you wherever you go.”
God promised Joshua that no enemy could stand against him when His presence was with him: “There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life: as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee. Be strong and of a good courage” (Joshua 1:5–6). When God’s Spirit is present with us, we can be strong and courageous because we trust His promises.
God told Isaiah of a special promise He makes to those He loves: “Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine. When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee. For I am the Lord thy God . . . and I have loved thee. . . . Fear not: for I am with thee” (Isaiah 43:1–5, my italics).
With God’s presence abiding in you, you can go through any fire, and you won’t just survive but will be kept and protected through it all.
These Old Testament accounts aren’t mere stories. They are meant to encourage us to trust God for His presence in our own lives.