I was sitting in my car and reading Exodus 40:1-9 today, and was suddenly struck by the passage. It is about the tabernacle, in the Old Testament, that God commissioned Moses to fabricate.
“Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, ‘On the first day of the month, you shall set up the tabernacle of the tent of meeting. And you shall place the ark of the testimony there, and you shall screen the ark of the veil. And you shall bring in the table and arrange what belongs on it; and you shall bring in the lampstand and mount its lamps. Moreover, you shall set the gold altar of incense before the ark of the testimony, and set up the veil for the doorway to the tabernacle. (Exodus 40:1-5).
A few verses later, the passage closes, “Then you shall take the anointing oil and anoint the tabernacle and all that is in it, and shall consecrate it and all its furnishings; and it shall be holy.” (Exodus 40:9).
From these verses, it is obvious that the tabernacle was to be holy. The New Testament says that, as Christians, we are a new tabernacle for the Lord’s Spirit. I thought to myself, “How holy am I? Am I as holy as the tabernacle in the Old Testament? How pleased is God to dwell in me?”
In the New Testament, we read, “For we are the temple [tabernacle] of the living God; just as God has said, ‘I will dwell in them and walk among them. And I will be their God, and they shall be My people. Therefore, come out from their midst and be separate,’ says the Lord. ‘And do not touch what is unclean; and I will welcome you. And I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to Me.’ says the Lord Almighty.” (2 Corinthians 6:16-18).
A key, I have found, to healing, is to really understand God from His “Father” perspective. He wants to be a real father to us — perhaps like the father (or mother) that we never knew. God — who created us in His own image — knows just how to do it! He can be that intimate father that we never knew. He can bring that healing touch to us that we really need! In order to receive God’s healing touch, however, He constrains us to being holy. “Do not touch what is unclean, and I will welcome you. And I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to Me.” (2 Corinthians 6:18)
How can we be more holy before God? What is holding us back from really consecrating our lives to Him so that He can be the father that we never knew? You know, God really desires (!) to be our father, and good fathers — which God is — really care for their children’s well being! However, by our actions, and our attitudes, we can sometimes hinder Him from coming close to us and being that father that we need Him to be. (Cf. Isaiah 59:1-2, which says that it is actually our sin that prevents Him from coming close to us.) What is holding you back from really being close to the God who wants to be an intimate (and very much healing) father to you? Let’s consider a few things together.
1. How often do you pray? Do you simply put your head on the pillow at night without raising your head, or hands, … or at least your heart (!) before Him in an attitude of humble submission? Do you realize that the eternal destiny of many people is at stake? Are you really doing your all to “win others for Christ,” as the Bible says we should? This should be a real priority in your life, and, if it isn’t, you cannot expect God to really look down upon you with the favor of a loving, healing, father! Rather than healing you, He may want to spur you on to better and greater things! I have seen that one way that He can, and sometimes does, choose to do this, is through painful affliction! (Please read Job 33:13-30 and I think you will know what I mean.)
2. What things might be in your possession that you know God is displeased with? Get rid of them! (Throwing them out I think is usually the best way. If you think you should dispose of it some other way, you might want to do that, as well! E.g. in the book of Acts, they burned their sorcery books in one big pile.)
These are just a couple of the things you might consider with regards to keeping “holy” before God. You know, He really wants to come close to you! However, He cannot, and will not, do it, if you are not willing to deal with the sins that are in your life.