Dwell in Me and I will dwell in you (John 15:4)
March 23 - 25 (Nissan 11 – 17)
An old French recipe calls for fish in a heavy sauce, steamed and served in a paper bag. The beginning instructions state the obvious, “first catch the fish.” Now that's putting first things first.
This week in biblical history is all about firsts. It's the first week of a new year on the Bible’s calendar, the first week that God’s desert home, the Tent of Meeting, was erected, and the first time God’s presence entered His earthly home. (Exodus 12:2, 40:2 -17)
The Tent of Meeting, also known as the Tabernacle, was built one year to the month after the Israelites left Egypt. It was constructed in Shiloh where it stayed for roughly four centuries until the Temple was built in Jerusalem. (Joshua 18:1)
The Tent of Meeting came with precise building specifications given to Moses: forty-five feet long, fifteen feet wide, and fifteen feet high with a fifteen-foot square room called the Most Holy Place, which held the Ark of the Covenant. (Exodus 35 and 40) God’s presence, entering the Tent of Meeting, was something the world had never seen. No one would ever forget.
The words “Tent of Meeting” [ophel moed (מוֹעֵד אֹהֶל) in Hebrew] contain the word “moed” which means meeting or appointed time. These words also convey the concept of destination and purpose which we’ll explore throughout this year together.
Perhaps the most astounding aspect of the Tent of Meeting was the dual reason for its existence: both a dwelling place for God and a meeting place for the object of His affection, His people. In His presence, where relationship comes first and supernatural synergy follows, they found clarity of purpose and direction.
Roughly four centuries later, King Solomon threw a big celebration to commemorate the Tabernacle’s move to God’s permanent home in Jerusalem. With all the leaders and elders in attendance, Solomon welcomed the Ark of the Covenant where God’s presence was known to dwell.
With this in mind, we can see that God’s intention has always been to provide a meeting place. He’s focused on relationships. What’s more, the death and resurrection of Jesus made things even more intimate. Now the King’s tangible and continual dwelling place is in each of us. A notable author once wrote, “the dwelling place of God is with man, and He will dwell with them.”
These realities have a direct and lasting impact on us as His children. Dwelling with Him means we're safe, provided for, and confident to find our identity in Him. That's bound to produce a great big smile!
This is the perfect recipe for life designed from on high and available today. The King is our dwelling place, and he is ours.
Thank you, Father, for putting relationships first. I am grateful for who You are and what You’ve done. Thank You for not being far away, but so close so I can hear your invitation to meet with you. I want to know you and find my home in you. I choose to seek You before my own agenda. I give you my life afresh today and welcome you to overwhelm me with Your goodness and amaze me with Your favor. Take all You want; I freely give You all that I have. I declare sudden breakthroughs are coming in my life as You dwell in me, and I dwell in You. Amen.
- “Dwell in Me, and I will dwell in you.” (John 15:4)
- “The dwelling place of God is with man and He will dwell with them.” (Revelation 21:3)
- “If you say, ‘The LORD is my refuge,’ and you make the Most High your dwelling, no harm will overtake you, no disaster will come near your tent.” (Psalm 91:9)
- “How lovely is your dwelling place, LORD Almighty!” (Psalms 84:1-7)
- The Tabernacle was first set up on the first day of the first month in the second year after the nationwide exodus of the Israelites from Egypt. (Exodus 40:2, 17)
- Solomon assembled the leaders of Israel to celebrate the dedication of the First Temple during the fall festival month of Tishri. (1 Kings 8)