I have just finished another great week in Portugal. Another teaching project has been recorded and I am in the process of editing the material to be used in various Portuguese speaking countries in the world. Thank you to Lidia Ferreira for all of her hard work translating. I worked you hard and you eagerly served in the long hours of recording. I was blessed to speak to the CCVA leaders as well as several churches over the weekend. It was a good time and God is surely in my time with my Portuguese family. They are hungry, willing, and teachable and I am honored to serve these wonderful people.
What is the foundation for being leaders, ministers, fathers, mothers, or anyone in a place of Christ-life responsibility in life? At the end of King David’s life, he gathered the captains of various divisions. Some were captains of thousands, some hundreds, and some fifties. He called for those who responsible for various measures in his kingdom to come before him.
1 Chronicles 28:1-2 Now David assembled at Jerusalem all the leaders of Israel: the officers of the tribes and the captains of the divisions who served the king, the captains over thousands and captains over hundreds, and the stewards over all the substance and possessions of the king and of his sons, with the officials, the valiant men, and all the mighty men of valor. Then King David rose to his feet and said, “Hear me, my brethren and my people: I had it in my heart to build a house of rest for the ark of the covenant of the Lord, and for the footstool of our God, and had made preparations to build it.”
David wanted to build a house for God, but God told him that his son would build it. David had been a man who had shed much blood. He had taken much life. The house that David saw could only be built by a man of life, a man who could only give life. I don’t believe that Solomon built that house. I don’t believe that the Temple of Solomon met the criteria of what was in David’s heart. I believe that the greater David built it, and the greater David was Jesus. The house that David had in mind was a place where God rests and then all of His enemies would be made His footstool. His enemies would be subdued by God’s presence in the earth.
Stephen, at his stoning, told his Jewish countrymen that the body of Christ was the testimony of the greater David. It was the testimony of the One who had come to build the house where God rests in the earth.
Acts 7:44 “Our fathers had the tabernacle of witness in the wilderness, as He appointed, instructing Moses to make it according to the pattern that he had seen, 45 which our fathers, having received it in turn, also brought with Joshua into the land possessed by the Gentiles, whom God drove out before the face of our fathers until the days of David, 46 who found favor before God and asked to find a dwelling for the God of Jacob. 47 But Solomon built Him a house. 48 “However, the Most High does not dwell in temples made with hands, as the prophet says: 49 ‘Heaven is My throne, and earth is My footstool. What house will you build for Me? says the Lord, or what is the place of My rest? 50 Has My hand not made all these things?’”
The prophet Isaiah declared that God’s house could not be built by human hands, but the God had a place much greater as His place of rest. His desire was to rest upon the earth in the hearts of men.
Isaiah 61:1 Thus says the Lord: “Heaven is My throne, and earth is My footstool. Where is the house that you will build Me? And where is the place of My rest?
The house that God lives in is not built with human hands. Any ministry effort or any physical effort we make in life will not be sufficient enough to be a place that God lives. It is only in us that His presence can abide, and then the things we do become expressions from the place where He rests. When God rests in our lives, He gives us life, breath, and all things.
Acts 17:24-25 God, who made the world and everything in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands. Nor is He worshiped with men’s hands, as though He needed anything, since He gives to all life, breath, and all things.
I believe that is the house God desires and we should desire to be a place where God rests at all times. When God rests in and among men His enemies are made a footstool. God does not rest there in order to tell us how to subdue the enemies. It is God’s manifest presence that subdues the enemies. I think this is true for us as individuals. Are we a place where God rests? As a human being – as a man, a woman, a leader, as person in life; am I a place where God rests?
Ted J. Hanson
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