The Fall not only separated us from God, but God from us. The Creator and the created lived in harmony in Eden for a time. Then our first parents chose to walk away from God. They rejected the light and in doing so found themselves in the land of darkness.
The Old Testament is a walk through God’s efforts to reconnect with us, but He was always outside of us. So God used nature and physical realities to speak to His people of spiritual matters yet to come. He wrote His law on tablets of stone. His Ark was made of wood and gold. His people’s spiritual battles played out in flesh and blood.
First, God spoke to one man Abraham, then through Moses, then through His law. The Tabernacle went from outside the camp to the middle of the camp. Finally, God’s house, the Temple, was built in the center of Jerusalem. God was among His people yet still separated by physical barriers because of our sin. Eventually, the people ended up defiling the Temple with false gods, and God’s spirit left the Temple and the Ark of the Covenant was lost. Our ancestors had fallen again.
Isaiah spoke of the coming of Immanuel which means God with us. Jesus was God in the flesh. No longer speaking through plagues and laws written on stone. Jesus was the Word of God in the flesh and He spoke directly to us. Mary’s body was the Ark of the Covenant made in flesh. God was with us, walking among us. Teaching us directly. Healing us. Delivering us from the Evil One. But still there was this separation. Jesus could only sit beside two people at a time.
There was a greater level of intimacy that God desired. At the Last Supper Jesus spoke of the coming of Holy Spirit. How we could be one with Him and He with us. The coming of the Holy Spirit was God within us! God’s word is written on our hearts! St. Paul says that our bodies are the Temple of the Holy Spirit. We fight not against flesh and blood but against spiritual hosts of wickedness! Now there is no more waiting in the hot son for hours for the hope of catching a glimpse of Jesus. He dwells within us. Yet there is still a separation.
Everything in the Bible progresses toward the Wedding Feast of the Lamb, where there will be no more separation. The “God within us” stage will yield to “Unity with God”. This week we sing “O Come, O Come, Immanuel” but in our hearts and spirits is the Revelations cry, “Maranatha! Come Lord Jesus Come.”
#trcot #tcot #Immanuel #Maranatha
Related scripture: Isaiah 7:14, 1 Cor. 6:19, Eph. 6:12