Summary: We are created to live in and enjoy God's presence daily....Why is the presence so God so important?
Sermon by Pr. Paddick Van Zyl Aug 17 2014
Title: I can’t live without Your Presence
Are there certain rules and regulations when meeting someone of importance , like say the Queen of England or can one just bang on the door, walk right up to her and start chatting? Rachel Kelly sheds more light on this for us:
‘Meeting Queen Elizabeth -- even for a world leader -- can be nerve-racking. There is a long list of protocols that guides one's behavior in the presence of Her Majesty
There is the "no-touch" rule, for example. The queen's visitors have to wait until she extends her hand to take it, and they are not supposed to grip it tightly or pump it, said Rachel Kelly, a public relations executive at Visit Britain, the U.K.'s official tourism office. No hugs, no kiss on the cheek, no touching the shoulder, which is why the queen's gesture comes as a surprise’.#
Max Luxado writes about how it was like in the days of Esther and King Xerxes: ‘In the court of King Xerxes, entering the king’s presence without permission carried a penalty of death for the offender. This law was not lightly taken by the people of Persia. But, in order to save her people, Queen Esther collected her courage and approached the throne. The king accepted her without rebuke, granted her request, and a nation survived. Aren’t you glad God is more accessible than Xerxes? What if we could go to God in prayer only when he called us? What if we needed an official guard to announce our presence?’##
Let’s learn more about God’s presence today….
Psalm 51: 10-12;17 NIV
10Create in me a pure heart, O God,
and renew a steadfast spirit within me.
11 Do not cast me from your presence
or take your Holy Spirit from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation
and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.
17My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit;
a broken and contrite heart
you, God, will not despise.
17 My sacrifice [the sacrifice acceptable] to God is a broken spirit; a broken and a contrite heart [broken down with sorrow for sin and humbly and thoroughly penitent], such, O God, You will not despise.
The very first encounter that man has with the presence of God can be found in Genesis with Adam and Eve. They had fellowship with God in His presence. However, when sin came on the scene, the presence was no longer there:
Genesis 3:8 NKJV
8 And they heard the sound of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden.
Yet God is omnipresent, but His manifest presence is not:
Jeremiah 23:24 ESV
24 Can a man hide himself in secret places so that I cannot see him? declares the LORD. Do I not fill heaven and earth? declares the LORD.
The absence of God’s presence is the same as the absence of His Spirit *. Saul is a prime example of loosing or having God’s Spirit depart from a person, as a result of an un-repented heart:
1 Samuel 16:14 ESV
14 Now the Spirit of the LORD departed from Saul, and a harmful spirit from the LORD tormented him.
Moses understood the importance of being in God’s presence. We find in Exodus that Moses refuses to tape a step in leading God’s people, without God’s presence going with him:
14 And he said, “My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.”15 And he said to him, “If your presence will not go with me, do not bring us up from here.
King David, in Psalm 51, almost begs of God to not take His Spirit from him or to let him depart from His presence, after the multiple sins he committed. David knew the importance of being in God’s presence. It is only in God’s presence that we find:
*Joy, love, peace Psalm 16:11
*Healing and deliverance
*Forgiveness, comfort and grace
In His presence :
*the impossible becomes the possible
*He wipes away every tear
John Gill says this of v 11 of Psalm 51 on God’s presence:
‘Nothing is more desirable to a child of God than the presence of God; and nothing gives him more sensible pain than his absence; and even to be deprived of or denied the means of enjoying his presence the word and ordinances, makes them very uneasy: to be utterly, and for ever deprived of it, is the case of the damned in hell, and is the punishment of loss they sustain; and, on the other hand, the happiness of the saints in heaven is to enjoy it without interruption. The people of God are never cast away from his favour, or out of his heart's love; but they may for a while be without his gracious presence, or not see his face, nor have the light of his countenance, nor sensible communion with him, which is here deprecated.’ **