Remember the UFO craze of the fifties. People were obsessed with the idea that there may some form of life in outer space that we have never seen and that life was visiting us. There are still those who claim to see these objects from time to time, some creating nothing more than a hoax, while others go unexplained. I may surprise you to say that I agree with the curious, there is life out there! And I believe that life visits us often and is, in fact, around us all the time. Not in space ships or saucers, but in heavenly form and in spirit.
You see, God is a Spirit, and those who worship Him do so in spirit and truth. Long ago, the Hebrew people were told of God’s intention by the prophet Isaiah. Here, the writer tells us of a marvelous thing. God would have a child by a virgin and that His name would be “Emanuel,” which means “God is with us.”
God revealed long ago that it was His intention to be with us, among us, and so, Jesus came to us, preached the good news, healed the sick, went to Calvary, and now is seated in Heaven, waiting to come again. Before He left us, he gave us this promise. “I am with you always. ..even until the of the earth.” He made good on His promise on the day of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit came to indwell the believers gathered there, and He still indwells every believer who receives Him. Jesus promised the disciple in the book of John, during the last supper discourse that the Father would send us a companion who would come along side us, to give direction, encouragement, and comfort. That companion is the Holy Spirit, the promise of the Father. We are not alone.
In every covenant that God has established and to each generation He has given the great promise of His presence. To Joshua and the Israelites He said this:
“Be strong and be of good courage, fear not , nor be afraid of them, for the Lord your God, He it is that goes with you, He will not fail you, or ever leave you.” (6)
The people of God were about to cross over the river Jordan, and take the land from the inhabitants of Jericho. God’s promise was to be with them always, and that assured to them the victory. We have that same assurance today. God is not partial. His promise to one is for all others as well. The Lord repeats this same promise again to Joshua, after the death of Moses. He wants all to be assured of His promise to be with them. (7) His presence is in the battle and in the time of peace. Jesus said “peace I leave with you, my peace, I give unto you,” and “in the world you will have tribulation . Be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” (8) What was true for the Hebrews of the old covenant is still true for believers in the new covenant. He promises to be with us. And God even goes further than just to promise His presence in good times and bad. The prophet Isaiah quotes the word of Lord this way, “when the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongue fails for thirst, I the Lord will hear then, I the God of Israel will not forsake them.” (9) He even promises to quench our thirst. In fact, all of the promises of God are yes and so to us in Christ. (10) He will simply not forsake His children and this assures us that we are not alone.
1. John 4:24
2.. Isaiah 7:14
3. Matthew 28:20
4. Acts 2:1-4
5. John 15:26, 16:7,13
6. Deuteronomy 31:6, 8
7. Joshua 1:5, 9
8. John 14:27, 16:33
9. Isaiah 41:17
10. II Corinthians 1:20
April 18, 2006