Sermon Illustrations

You Can't Put God in a Box

Have you heard that before? In a sense, it is certainly true. The eternal Creator God is outside all our finite minds can comprehend. He is not bound by the natural laws that He put into place for His creation. Though WE cannot confine Him or "put God in a box," HE can! In fact, around 3500 years ago, He chose to confine Himself, in that time and place and for His purposes, to the top of a box. God commanded His people, the Israelites, to build Him a very special box, the Ark of the Covenant.

He said, "There, above the cover between the two cherubim that are over the ark of the Testimony, I will meet with you and give you all my commands..." (Exodus 25: 22)

While not limiting His omnipresence and for His specific purposes, God would still confine His Presence to a specific place, over the cover of the Ark of the Covenant inside the Tent of Meeting. That is where He met Moses and where He said that He would teach His people everything they needed to know.

In the same manner, He confined Himself in order to guide them through the wilderness. "Then the cloud covered the Tent of Meeting, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle... In all the travels of the Israelites, whenever the cloud lifted from above the tabernacle, they would set out; but if the cloud did not lift, they did not set out -- until the day it lifted." (Exod. 40: 34, 36-37)

In order that His people would have an infallible guide and would not have to lean on their own understanding, He confined Himself in a physical place that they could see and follow, a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night.

About 1500 years later, God once again confined Himself. "In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God... the Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us." (John 1: 1, 14)... "For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form..." (Colossians 2: 9)

Jesus Christ, "... made Himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness." (Philippians 2: 7)

The One through whom all things were created willingly confined His glory for thirty-three years to a human body; as a young child, a body that had to be cared for and fed by His mother and as He grew, a body that got weary and sore, and was tempted in every way, just as we are, the Scripture says, yet was without sin. (Hebrews 4: 15) Once again God gave us a perfect and infallible guide for our understanding.

Hebrews 1: 1 - 3 says that "In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days He has spoken to us by His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, and through whom He made the universe. The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of His being, sustaining all things by His powerful Word."

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