Summary: When we experience the manifest presence of God we are changed deep in our life forever. All though Saul knew about God, he came to fully experience and KNOW God on the road to Damascus.
“There’s Got To Be More!”
Meanwhile, Saul was still breathing out murderous threats against the Lord’s disciples. He went to the high priest and asked him for letters to the synagogues in Damascus, so that if he found any there who belonged to the Way, whether men or women, he might take them as prisoners to Jerusalem.
As he neared Damascus on his journey, suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him. He fell to the ground and heard a voice say to him, "Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?"
"Who are you, Lord?" Saul asked.
"I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting," he replied. "Now get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do."
Difference between the Omnipresence and the Manifest presence of God.
Saul as a believer in God as it was taught in the temple. The Word of God they studied did not teach that the messiah would come as Jesus came. This was new to the church and different making it hard for the church to accept.
The church of Paul’s time was really no different than we are today. When we are introduced to something remarkable and life changing we may not accept it at first. We may even say it is not of the God we know and understand.
Saul knew God and worshiped him. God was with him because God is every where. Through the omnipresence of God he is always with people.
John 1:3-5… Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it.
But when we experience the manifest presence of God we are changed deep in our life forever. All though Saul knew about God, he came to fully experience and KNOW God on the road to Damascus.
Paul wrote in 2 Tim 1:12…I know whom I have believed,
Heb 8:10-12… This is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel after that time, declares the Lord. I will put my laws in their minds and write them on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people. No longer will a man teach his neighbor, or a man his brother, saying, ’Know the Lord,’ because they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest. For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more."
The fullness of God is experienced in a concentrated form expressed by many as the Glory of the Lord.
We call it having a great service or experiencing the power of God.
2 Chron 7:14… if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face
This scripture is giving us instruction to seek more of God than the Omnipresence of God. If God is every where and that is all we need of God than why would those called, His People, need to seek is face.
God’s favor flows where ever his face is directed. When God shows up in a Manifest presence form He is there for a specific purpose and will accomplish a dynamic result.
It is the manifest presence of God we seek here at Open Door Church.
2 Chron 7:14… 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.
Maybe it is our wicked ways that continues to encourage us to be satisfied with the omnipresent of the lord in our life instead of seeking the manifest presence.
God responds to those who are truly hungry for more of Him. When we repent, reach for His face, and pray, He forgives, redeems, and shows Himself in a greater way.
Guided By God
I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you. Do not be like the horse or the mule, which have no understanding but must be controlled by bit and bridle or they will not come to you. Many are the woes of the wicked, but the Lord’s unfailing love surrounds the man who trusts in him. Rejoice in the LORD and be glad, you righteous; sing, all you who are upright in heart!
Ill The child knows the signals of a parent: talking in church. Look back at my mom and she would have this certain look.
Have we yet matured to know when God would be unhappy with our behavior? Do we know God enough to catch his still small voice? Or do we still need to hear the thundering voice of a prophet to correct our ways.