LONGING FOR THE PRESENCE OF GOD
Solomon was one of the greatest figures in Israel’s history.
He was richly blessed of the Lord, yet it is said of him in
1 Kings 11:4:
For it came to pass, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned away his heart after other gods, and his heart was not perfect with the Lord his God, as was the heart of David his Father.
He had 700 wives and 300 concubines.
Now, from the time of Solomon’s turning away from God, until he finally came back.
He was never satisfied, though he sought satisfaction in many ways, it never came.
Thus, was it true for Israel.
She had experienced the blessings of God, and knew his mighty power, and rejoiced at His presence, but now she had turned away from Him, and her heart longed once more for the presence of God.
Thus, we have these verses.
Note with me 3 reasons why Israel longed for the presence of God and why we TODAY NEED the presence of God.
I. BECAUSE OF THE GREAT NEED FELT (v. 1)
Oh, that you would rend the heavens and come down, that the mountains would tremble before you! NIV
Heaven had seemingly closed up on them, God's blessings had been withheld, and they longed for a "rending" of the opening of the Heavens.
A. Compare this to the current events of our day.
1. Churches losing their power
2 Tim. 3:5
Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof, from such turn away.
Is the church really changing anything in the world today?
Or is the world changing the church?
2. Christians losing their zeal to serve God.
They profess that they know God; but in works they deny Him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.
How can they help lose it, most churches never feed their people, always preaching salvation messages, never how to fight life's battles with the enemy.
Most christians would rather read STAR, ENQUIRER or some other book rather than THE BOOK God's WORD.
3. Millions losing their souls
Every 24 hours, 146,000 people die
Every 1 hour, 6,000 die
Every 1 minute, 100 die
Every 10 seconds, 17 people die
More than 1 person a second steps off into eternity.
Whether they are prepared to meet God or not.
353,00 people born every 24 hours.
Less than 1%of world is Christian.
236 born every hour.
4 people a minute.
Evangelism is needed, but not by the addition method practiced prevalently today.
We need to evangelize by the multiplication method.
The book of Acts talks of 3000 being saved at one time.
It talks of those the Lord added to the church DAILY such as should be saved.
4. Lack of genuine love among Christians
When we see a need we feel like we need to know the life history of the person before we try to help them.
We are not responsible for what people do with the help we give them, but we are responsilble for helping as the Lord directs.
B. They desired also a new manifestation of His presence.
Manifestation is a public revelation.
There is a great need for the presence of God in our land.
If there has ever been a greater need than in Isaiah's time, it is in our day.
We Need a New Manifestation of:
1. His Power
To change lives:
a. Gadarean demoniac
b. Woman taken in adultery
2. His Promises
Conditional - we meet His conditions and He will Bless
3. His protection
No one can harm us until God is through with us if we trust in His might and power.
4. His provision
"Once I was young, and now I am old but I have never seen the righteous forsaken or his seed begging bread".
But my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.
II. WE LONG FOR THE PRESENCE OF GOD BECAUSE OF THE GREAT WORK TO BE DONE
As when the melting fire burneth, the fire causeth the waters to boil, (vs. 2).
A. MELTING WORK - That the mountains may flow down at thy presence.
1. Mountains of discouragement
Realize God expects us to be faithful to carry out his commands, not for the results.
Discouragement is one of the spirits that hinder the Fire of God from falling.
2. Mountains of sin
Habits can't get rid of.
Ingratitude neglect of God's word neglect of prayer
mechanical, lazy prayers without feeling lack of love for friends and relatives
lack of concern for the lost neglect of family duties
neglect to watch over your brothers and sisters in Christ worldly mindedness
envy slander gossip
lying cheating hypocrisy
robbing God not denying self, etc.
3. Mountains of selfishness that dishonors God and hinders Him from working.
Can't love or be concerned for others when all we think about is ourselves.
4. Mountains of indifference that block the channel of blessings
5. Mountains of Pride
The thing that keeps many out of the kingdom of God more than anything else.
Too proud to admit they are wrong, always have to be right.
6. Mountains of idleness
Laziness, let others do it attitude.
7. Mountains of separation
From others - grudges be let go, get things right with bro & sis in Lord.
B. BURNING WORK
As when the melting fire burneth.
When the Fire of God falls it will burn the brushwood of:
1. Our vain thoughts -
2. Our fleshly energy - Can’t do it My Way
3. Our Self- confidence - Can’t make it alone
4. Our unwillingness
5. Our foolish walks - Sunday children
C. WARMING WORK
The fire causeth the waters to boil.
Lukewarmness cannot exist where this fire is:
When our hearts are made to boil like a pot, because of the power of His presence.
1. Our testimonies will be hot
2. Our prayers will be hot
3. Our affections will be hot
4. Our souls will be hot.
Demons will be cast out, people will be convicted of sin and saved, people will grow in Christ, the sick will be healed and deliverance will come.
Out of burning hearts will come burning desires, clothed in burning words.
III. WE LONG FOR THE PRESENCE OF GOD BECAUSE OF THE GREAT RESULTS SOUGHT
We may long for the manifestation of the power of God for our own personal deliverance, but the mightier argument is:
A. That thy name may be known to Thine adversaries
1. His name is a saving name
Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.
2. His name is a burden lifting name
Come unto me, all ye that labort and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
3. His name is a life-giving name
B. That the nations may tremble at Thy presence
Oh, how we need this same God to come back to us, and one more time pour out His blessings upon us.
They that know His Name will put their trust in Him.
When God the Spirit comes in power, it is to glorify the Name of the Eternal Son.
Be filled with the Spirit, then for you the heavens will be opened, thy mountains shall flow down, their brushwood burned up, and the waters of thy affections and hearts desire made to boil.
So shall His Name be known.
What will it be?
Are we serious about longing for the presence of God or are we fooling ourselves.
If we truly want God to bless us and fill us with His Spirit, then we need to start spending some time with Him in prayer and Bible study.
Seeking His face for daily guidance and direction.
2 Chronicles 7:14
If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land. NIV
Be honest with yourself and God this morning, and look at yourself, not someone else.
Ask God to help you see you as He does.
Do you like what you see?
We are the clay and He is the Master Potter and He wants to mold you into a vessel of righteousness.
What is every church member were just like me, what kind of church would this be?
The invitation for you Christian friend is for you to come and ask God for personal revival in your own heart and life.
The invitation for you lost friend is for you to come to Jesus for salvation and eternal life.
Ask Him to come into your heart and make you His child.