The Lord Is His Name - Part III
“Thou in thy mercy hast led forth the people which thou hast redeemed: thou hast guided them in thy strength unto thy holy habitation.” —Exodus 15:13
The unredeemed never think of themselves as being slaves, much less slaves to Satan, but that’s exactly what they are. As such, only the strength of the Lord can extricate them from this terrible bondage of darkness. Man is only fooling himself if he thinks otherwise.
Most, if not all, believers would agree with what I’ve just stated, but some seem to think that because they are saved, thereby, new creations in Christ Jesus (II Cor. 5:17), they have the strength to sanctify themselves, i.e., to live a godly life. While they claim to trust God, to stand upon the Word, or to trust Christ, most Christians are trying to do this outside of the cross. In other words, they do not understand the part the cross of Christ plays in their sanctification experience, which has to do with their everyday life and living before God, which is of supreme significance.
The truth is, the Christian has no more personal strength after salvation than he did before salvation. While it is certainly true that we have strength, even great strength, it is all in the Holy Spirit and not at all in us. The Holy Spirit, who lives and resides within our hearts and lives (I Cor. 3:16), works and functions in one way, and one way only. That one way is the cross of Christ. Everything the Holy Spirit does is within the parameters of the finished work of Christ, which has given Him the legal right to do what He does (Rom. 8:1-2, 11). In other words, it was the cross that opened up the way simply because the sin debt was totally and completely paid, making it possible for the Holy Spirit to live within our hearts and lives on a permanent basis. This means that we, the believers, must anchor our faith at all times in the great sacrifice of Christ. Listen again to Paul, “But God forbid that I should glory [boast], save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world” (Gal. 6:14).
To be frank, our salvation and our victory depend upon three things:
2.Our faith in Christ and the cross.
3.That which gives the Holy Spirit latitude to work (the cross).
It is clear here that through divine revelation, Moses knew there would be a place in the land of Canaan where God would “put His name” (Deut. 12:5, 11, 14; 14:23-24; 16:6, 11; 26:2). It seems also that he knew where that place would be—Jerusalem.
But, as most, if not all, of the Old Testament prophecies, it has an even greater reference than the temple in Jerusalem. In fact, in its conclusion, it is referring to the Holy Spirit ultimately dwelling within the child of God.
Jesus told His disciples, “And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter [Helper], that he may abide with you forever; Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know Him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you” (John 14:16-17).
Then Paul said, “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?” (I Cor. 3:16).
THE DWELLING PLACE OF GOD
First of all, one might say, “God dwelt in the sacrifices, which began at the very dawn of time” (Gen. 4). In this manner, sins could be forgiven, and the Lord could have communion with the sinner, but only in a limited way. The reason was that the blood of bulls and goats could not take away sins (Heb. 10:4). So this meant that the terrible sin debt remained.
Then, whenever the plans for the tabernacle were given, God dwelt between the mercy seat and the cherubim in the tabernacle. He then dwelt in the temple in the same manner, but His ultimate dwelling place, which was brought about by what Jesus did at the cross, was and is the human heart. Before the cross, He could not make the human heart and life His habitation simply because the blood of bulls and goats was woefully insufficient to take away sins (Heb. 10:4). But when Jesus came and died on the cross, He took away all sin, at least for all who will believe (John 1:29).
By simple faith in Christ, one becomes “His holy habitation.” This is a new standing, which means that we are literally placed in Christ, which is made possible by the cross and our faith in that finished work. In fact, this is the position of all believers in the Lord Jesus Christ. “For Christ hath once suffered for sins [the cross], the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God” (I Pet. 3:18). This is our place as His redeemed.
GOD’S WHOLE MORAL NATURE
With God’s whole moral nature having been satisfied in the death of Christ, He can now rest in us in perfect complacency. Jesus said, “At that day [after Christ had gone to the cross] ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you” (John 14:20).
The old hymn says,
So near, so very near to God,
I cannot nearer be;
For in the person of His Son,
I am as near as He.
This place was all made possible by the cross and our faith in that great sacrifice. It is indeed accorded to us in grace, but nonetheless, in righteousness, so that not only are all the attributes of God’s character concerned in bringing us there, but He Himself is also glorified by it. It is an immense thought, and one which, when held in power, imparts both strength and energy to our souls—that we are even now brought to God.
The whole distance—measured by the death of Christ on the cross when He was made sin for us (a sin offering), which means that He took upon Himself the total and complete sin penalty—has been bridged over, and our position of nearness is marked by the place He now occupies as glorified by the right hand of God (Heb. 1:3).
In fact, even when we are transported to heaven itself, we shall not be nearer, as it regards our position, than we are now because it is “in Christ.”
Because we are “in Christ” and have that standing as the result of the cross, God looks for a state corresponding with our standing.
A. W. Pink said, “State and walk must ever flow from a known relationship. Unless therefore we are taught the truth of our standing before God, we shall ne
This is the great truth, the manner of sanctification for the saint, that I am continually trying to address it from every angle that I know, even in the fear of being overly repetitious. But I do so because I realize how hard Satan fights this truth of truths, and due to the flesh, how difficult it is for the believer to grasp what is being said.
The Lord has given me the revelation of how to live for God, which is not new but actually that which He gave to Paul, and if I said otherwise, I would not be telling the truth. But yet, it is so difficult to get Christians out of the spiritual lethargy in which they sleep. That’s why Paul said, “Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober” (I Thess. 5:6).