God wants to have contact with people
“But can you, O God, really live on earth?” That was the question that King Solomon asked, and he goes on to say, “Not even all of heaven is large enough to hold you, so how can this Temple that I have built be large enough?” 1 Kings 8:27 (GNT).
God created people to be like Himself so that He could have contact with them here on earth. But when they sinned, they broke off this contact, and they were sent away from before God’s face. But God still loved mankind, and He later used Moses to build the Tabernacle, the “Tent of Meeting”, from which He could lead the people with His holy laws and commandments.
There God spoke with Aaron, the high priest, about what he should say to the people of Israel (Exodus 25:22). On these occasions, Aaron was always clothed in holy and clean clothes (Exodus 28). In this purity and holiness, God could have contact with the earth. A stream of blessings and glory flowed out from the Tabernacle to all those who lived according to God’s word.
A home for God on earth: our heart
But God did not want to live in a physical house; He wanted to live in the hearts of people. “I am the high and holy God, who lives forever. I live in a high and holy place, but I also live with people who are humble and repentant, so that I can restore their confidence and hope.” Isaiah 57:15 (GNT). God can only live and speak in the hearts of people that are humble and repent from their sins. It is only such people that He can change to be like Himself (Romans 8:29).
“Don’t you know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you?” 1 Corinthians 3:16 (NLT). Think of the power and the joy we have if we know that our heart is a home for everything that is good and pure! Most hearts are a place for everything that is evil and impure.
“Jesus replied, “All who love me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and we will come and make our home with each of them.’” John 14:23 (NLT). When Jesus and the Father live in us, rivers of blessing will flow from our life.
“For God wanted them to know that the riches and glory of Christ are for you Gentiles, too. And this is the secret: Christ lives in you. This gives you assurance of sharing his glory.” Colossians 1:27 (NLT).
Here it says that we can share in His glory! This has been a great mystery throughout all ages. The usual thing is to pray to Jesus for the forgiveness of sins, but there are very few who have Jesus living in their hearts, who share His glory, and receive His power. Paul prays for the Ephesians that God will give them “… the power to be strong inwardly through his Spirit. I pray that Christ will live in your hearts by faith...” Ephesians 3:16-17 (NCV).
God in our hearts by faith
“But what the scripture says about being put right with God through faith is this: ‘You are not to ask yourself, Who will go up into heaven?’ (that is, to bring Christ down). ‘Nor are you to ask, Who will go down into the world below?’ (that is, to bring Christ up from death). What it says is this: ‘God's message is near you, on your lips and in your heart’ (that is, the message of faith that we preach).” Romans 10:6-8 (GNT).
For most people, Christ is high up and far away, but we can get Him into our hearts by faith. He speaks to us by His Spirit and makes His word alive for us. It is not a question of “You must, and you shall,” but He has chosen us to live according to His word. He gives us power by His Spirit in our inner being, and therefore it is absolutely possible to do His will with joy. He fills us with all desire to do the good, and we become more and more like Him.
“A home for God on two legs”
“You are like a building with the apostles and prophets as the foundation and with Christ as the most important stone. Christ is the one who holds the building together and makes it grow into a holy temple for the Lord. And you are part of that building Christ has built as a place for God's own Spirit to live.” Ephesians 2:20-22 (CEV).
We can each become one of these small “homes for God on two legs” who walk around in this evil and dark world and show God’s light, life, and nature. Jesus Himself is the “most important stone”, who has given us instructions for this glorious and everlasting building. These instructions are to always say No to your own will and to say to God, like Jesus did, “Look, I have come to do Your will.” Luke 9:23; Hebrews 10:9 (GNT).
In this spirit we are joined together with the apostles, the prophets, and all the saints, to be a holy temple in the Lord. Everyone who is in this building has the same understanding and attitude of mind (1 Corinthians 1:8-10). In this building, no one is against another. This is not something that only happens after Jesus has returned, but it is already happening now.
The building will be finished when Jesus returns to earth. Then all these small “houses on two legs” will be joined together and raised up to be an eternal and glorious temple. Therefore, it’s written, “...above all else, guard your heart!” Proverbs 4:23 (NIV). Then nothing can divide us from the other stones in God’s building.
There is something we need to do if we want to be along in this building. We must give up everything! Then we will be one of the living stones that share eternity with Jesus and God, together with the apostles, the prophets, and all the saints!