The Israelites who happened to be there when the Ark came lowing its way into town, being pulled on a cart by two cows, rejoice that the Presence of the Lord has returned. The celebration is short lived. They take it upon themselves to offer the cows as a sacrifice. I’m wondering if they had priests there doing that.
Then it would seem that maybe some of them looked into the Ark. All those who hadn’t treated the Ark as holy were killed. Hebrews 4:16 says, “Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” (BSB) Are we free to enter God’s presence or not? Should we be running to Him or away? Will we find life or death there?
We’ve been taught in the modern church to treat God lightly. He’s our daddy, our buddy, our friend. We’re taught He overlooks our sins; He understands our weaknesses.
This is the same God that killed those who just looked at Him the wrong way. This is the same God who required blood for His wrath to be satisfied.
It took the perfect sacrifice of His obedient Son, Jesus, to satisfy His wrath, so that we can come into His presence with confidence to seek mercy and grace.
Yes, we can come running to God. But we get to His presence through the cross of Christ. We get to God’s presence and get access to the secret place by entering in with the life of Christ. How do we get the life of Christ in us?
We lay down our lives and pick up His by faith. We lay our lives down. We lay it all on the altar of sacrifice. He lights the fire. Everything is consumed or purified to be consecrated to His purposes.
He offers our lives back to us to be used for His purposes, consecrated and infused with His life, His Spirit.
We live the rest of our days by faith in the Son of God, not in ourselves.
We can enter His presence with confidence because we’re already dead! There is no fear of death. If anything in us of ourselves remains or is trying to resurrect the flesh, we want to be in His holy fire presence and have it put to death.
It’s the same presence. We need to be put to death so that we can have life.