JESUS IS THE HOUSE OF GOD

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JESUS IS THE HOUSE OF GODCopyright Š 2012 Robert B. Thompson. All Rights Reserved

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright Š 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Bible Publishers.

I suppose every devout Christian realizes that the Lord Jesus is the House of God the Father. Yet, we do not act as though we do. But this fact certainly is being made plain to us in these days.

It truly is a simple concept—much simpler than the idea of a Trinity, that leaves one at times viewing Jesus as the Father. Of course, if this were true, some of the passages of the Scriptures would make no sense. But when we view the Lord Jesus as the House of the Father, dwelling place of the Father, all the passages of the Scripture make perfect sense.

In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. (John 14:2)

Let me use another translation, and we will examine the difference.

In My Father's house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. (John 14:2—NIV)

And another:

In the house of my Father are many mansions; and if not, I would have told you; I go on to prepare a place for you. (John 14:2—Young's Literal Translation)

Now compare these three expressions:

"I am going there."

"I go to prepare."

"I go on to prepare."

We will ignore the term "mansion" for now. It is an old English term for dwelling place, or room, and in today's interpretation of John 14:2 is quite misleading.

The word "there" warps the meaning. If you connect it with the idea that the word "mansions" is referring to ornate homes, we have the traditional interpretation of John 14:2: Christ told us He was going to Heaven to build a mansion for us.

I think the translators of the New International Version bowed to convention an inserted a term "there" that is not found in the Greek Text. If it indeed is present or inferred in the Greek text, then the New American Standard (above) or Young would have included it.

Another way in which we can check the meaning of a verse is by examining the context. The fourteenth chapter of the Gospel of John has nothing whatever to do with homes in Heaven, or even with Heaven. Jesus spoke of how the Father is dwelling in Him; and how, if we keep Christ's commandments, the Father and Jesus will be dwelling in us.

Don't you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you are not just my own. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work. (John 14:10)

Jesus replied, "If anyone loves me, he will obey my teaching. My Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him." (John 14:23)

The Greek term for "home," in the verse above, is the same Greek term translated "mansions," in John 14:2 of the King James and other versions.

So much for "mansions."

Now, as to the Father's " house." To the best of my knowledge, nowhere in the Bible does it state that Heaven is God's house. But in several places in the New Testament it does refer to the Lord Jesus as God's house.

For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, (Colossians 2:9)

Also, we Christians are being made a part of God's house.

Built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit. (Ephesians 2:20-22)

And as far as where Jesus was going, the first place Christ went was to the cross. Then Christ brought His blood into the Most Holy Place in Heaven and presented it before the Father as an atonement for the sins of the world.

When Christ came as high priest of the good things that are already here, he went through the greater and more perfect tabernacle that is not man-made, that is to say, not a part of this creation. He did not enter by means of the blood of goats and calves; but he entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, having obtained eternal redemption. (Hebrews 9:11,12)

He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world. (I John 1:2)

At this point, let's take another look at John 14:2 to see if we can understand what the Lord Jesus was saying to His disciples:

In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. (John 14:2)

The Father's House is first, the Lord Jesus Christ, and then those who are part of the Body of Christ.

There are many rooms in Christ in which we are called to abide.

I am going to the cross to make an atonement with My blood. Then I am going to bring My blood that was shed, into the Most Holy Place in Heaven and sprinkle My blood that was shed on the cross in the Presence of My Father in Heaven.

The wrath of My Father will be appeased. Also, when in the future you, understand what I have done, and receive the atonement by faith, My blood will be sprinkled on your so My Father may accept you. Also, you will be created an integral part of me as you eat My flesh and drink My blood. In this manner I will prepare a place for you in Me, so you, along with Me will be part of the eternal Tabernacle of God.

Now we should examine the following verses in the fourteenth chapter of John to see if they agree with our new understanding of John 14:2.

And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. (John 14:3)

Because of verses that follow in this chapter, I do not believe that Jesus is referring here to His worldwide coming in which every eye shall see Him, but a coming to His disciples to make them part of Himself.

To be with Jesus where He is, is not just to be in that part of the spirit world referred to as Heaven, but to be in the center of the Person and will of the Father. There is no real benefit to being in the spirit world as such. Everyone who dies passes into the spirit world, but is not necessarily where Jesus is.

The truth is, we are to be with Jesus where He is, right this very moment. He is in the Father. Our goal is to be in the Father where Jesus is. To dwell in the center of God's Person and will is the rest of God. The rest of God is our land of promise, and we, as led by the Spirit of God, have to fight our way into God's rest. We have to labor to enter the rest of God.

You know the way to the place where I am going. (John 14:4)

I may be wrong, but I think the Lord gets a secret joy out of teasing us in this manner. The disciples had no idea where Christ was going or the way to that place. Maybe He wasn't just teasing them. Maybe He was preparing their minds so they would hear the answer when He gave it.

The problem here is that they had no way of understanding the truth: that Jesus is the House of God; that they are going to be rooms in that House; that Jesus was on His way to the cross to make an atonement for the sins of mankind.

Thomas said to him, "Lord, we don't know where you are going, so how can we know the way?" (John 14:5)

His disciples did not understand what Jesus was talking about any more than we do today.

Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." (John 14:6)

If someone asked us the way to a certain store, and we said, "I am the way," they would think we were crazy.

But Jesus Himself is the Way. He does not tell us the way, He is the way. This is difficult for us to understand until we get past Pentecost and begin to appreciate the spiritual fulfillment of the feast of Tabernacles.

In the spiritual fulfillment of Tabernacles, Jesus is our Salvation; Jesus is our Strength, our Righteousness, our Joy, our Song. This relationship is hard to understand until we experience it.

Jesus Himself is our Truth. He does not just tell us truth, He Himself is the Truth; and as we abide in Him, we understand Truth. Truth is not the scientific knowledge about things; truth tells us the meaning of things.

Jesus Himself is our Life. It is not that He give us Life, He is our Life. We think, speak, and act as He is thinking, speaking, and acting.

As we set aside our own life, as did the Apostle Paul, that we might live by the Life of Jesus, we come to know the Father. Jesus' purpose is to bring people to the Father; to reconcile people to the Father.

It is not that Jesus tells us about the Father, He brings us into that relationship with the Father that He has. So we know the Father because we are part of the Father's House.

It is difficult to put into words, as I stated previously. But it is an experience, just like basic salvation or the baptism with the Holy Spirit.

I refer to the "Tabernacles" experience as our being on the same side of the net with God. Prior to this time we play volleyball with God. We perform a religious duty, and God responds. We give generously, and God gives generously to us. We are kind to people and God is kind to us.

But in the experience of Tabernacles, of the rest of God, we are on the same side of the net, so to speak. We learn to live by the Life of Jesus. Thus there is no need for God to respond. We are doing what God is doing, so there is no need for Him to respond. Why should God respond to His own actions?

We do not learn to live in the rest of God in a moment. It is year after year, patiently asking Jesus about everything we think, say, and do. We immerse ourselves in the Presence of Christ. We speak to Him all the day long. We give thanks continually. This is what it means to live "in that Day," that is, in the day when the Lord alone is exalted.

With joy we bring forth the water of eternal Life from the Throne of God that has been created in us. We are one with each other and with God through Christ. In this manner we become the dwelling place of Christ and God, the manifestation of God in the creation.

Okay so far? Are we making sense?

If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him. (John 14:7)

The verse above is one on which the idea that Jesus and the Father are the same Person is based. It certainly could be interpreted to mean that, if one were to discard the remainder of the New Testament.

The following verse shows that this is not a valid interpretation:

Jesus said, "Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet returned to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, 'I am returning to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.'" (John 20:17)

In my opinion, this verse proves that Jesus and the Father are not the same Person. If the Father is our Father as well as the Father of Christ; and if God is our God as well as the God of Christ; how, then, are the Father and Jesus the same person? How are God and Jesus the same Person?

But there is more to this issue than just deciding whether God and Jesus are the same Person. If they are, then we may be considered the brothers of God; for the Bible states God has destined us to be the brothers of Christ. This just doesn't seem right!

Perhaps the most important issue of the present move of God is the bringing of us into a closer relationship with the Lord Jesus, so that we are living by His Life. If Jesus is another name for the Father, then everything becomes confused.

If we are not one of the sons of God, with the Lord Jesus as our King and elder brother, how then, as it says in the Book of Hebrews, do we join with Jesus in praise to His Father?

Saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee. (Hebrews 2:12)

If it is true that the doctrine of the Trinity claims that God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit are the same Person, or three manifestations of the same Person, then the doctrine of the Trinity is misleading, mischievous in its applications, and decidedly contrary to the New Testament.

I can understand the desire of the scholars to maintain the Divinity of Christ, and to insure that we regard the Lord Jesus as very God, which indeed He is. But to maintain this truth at the expense of the written Word of God is not defensible, and must be altered as we enter the current reformation of Christian thinking.

The Lord Jesus Christ is the Son of God, the Word of God from the beginning. He is very God of very God and very Man of very Man. But He still worships God as His Father, which is clear from the New Testament; and this He would not do if He Himself is the Father.

It may be that it will add to this confusion when we discover that we are called to be in Christ one with the Father just as He is. We are to become rooms in the House of God, which is the Lord Jesus Himself. Jesus is the Chief Cornerstone of a house in which we are a room. Because of this, we may be considered the house of God and the manifestation of God just as Jesus is the House of God and the Manifestation of God.

We are not there as yet in the fullness God has in mind. But such is our calling, and it will be unfolding for a while yet. It is our Canaan, our land of promise, the rest of God into which we now are fighting our way. We will get there, if we do not quit and if we are faithful in subduing every enemy that comes against us. In that Day we along with the Holy Spirit will give the water of eternal life to those who are thirsty.

We are learning to live by the Life of Jesus just as He lives by the Life of the Father.

Philip said, "Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us." (John 14:8)

It is clear that Jesus had given His disciples the impression that Jesus and the Father are two different Persons.

Jesus answered: "Don't you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, 'Show us the Father'?" (John 14:9)

There are two explanations for the above saying. The first is traditional: that Jesus and the Father are the same Person. But there are many passages of the New Testament that prevent this understanding.

For example, who was Jesus praying to in Gethsemane? Were two different wills exercised there? If so, then two different Persons were involved.

One cannot escape this conclusion without theologic acrobatics.

The second explanation is not as commonly held. It is that the Father dwells in Jesus and Jesus lives by the Life of the Father, just as the Apostle Paul lives by the Life of Christ.

This second explanation fits the New Testament perfectly, and it is just as logical. The words and actions of Jesus proceed from the Father. Therefore, anyone who has seen Christ has seen the Father.

Don't you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you are not just my own. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work. (John 14:10)

Here we have the clear explanation of the mystery, and the abolishing of the doctrine of the Trinity.

The Lord Jesus did not say, "Isn't it obvious to you that I am the Father? Think of the might works I have done. Could a mere man have performed these; could a human being have multiplied the loaves and the fish? How long will it be before you perceive that I am the Father? I am God and there is none else. Bow down and worship me!"

No, Jesus did not say that. Rather He pointed out that that it is the Father who is living in Him who performs the works and speaks the words.

This is exactly the same idea that Paul expressed when he said that he was crucified with Christ and now Christ is living in him.

Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the miracles themselves. (John 14:11)

Jesus said that the miracles He was performing were proof of the Father living in Him; not that the miracles were proof that He Himself is the Father.

I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. (John 14:12)

I have not seen these greater works as yet, but I believe for them. It may be true that when the people who, along with the Lord Jesus, compose the "two witnesses" of the eleventh chapter of the Book of Revelation, the power of the "seven thunders" will be issued to them because of their willingness to set aside their own life that Christ may live and bear witness in them.

Because it was God speaking in Jesus, there assuredly will come a time when the believers will be performing greater miracles than Jesus did, such as drying up large bodies of water or restoring paraplegics until they are perfectly whole.

"Because I am going to the Father."

Again, if Jesus is the Father, how could He then go to the Father? More theologic gymnastics are needed here if the doctrine of the Trinity is to be supported.

And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it. (John 14:13,14)

One of the old hymns states: "What needless pain we bear; all because we do not carry everything to God in prayer." This is so true! I myself have found that as we enter the rest of God we continually are talking to Jesus, asking Him about everything we do. The moment we have a problem, we ask Jesus for help. Then, when He gives it, we always remember to give thanks.

This gives us some idea of the tremendous authority the Father has given to His Son. God is well pleased with Jesus!

If you love me, you will obey what I command. (John 14:15)

One wonders if some of the Bible Teachers of our day have ever read the Scriptures? I hear it said that Jesus has "done it all." Anything we do about our salvation is works, filthy rags. If there is any concept more destructive to Christian growth, I have yet to know about it.

We show our love for the Lord Jesus by obeying His commands, and also those of His Apostles, because He spoke through them.

It requires a lifetime of prayer, Bible reading, and the assistance of the Spirit of God if we ever are to be able to obey the commands of Christ and His Apostles! At least it has been that way with me.

So in what book do these people who are teaching "Jesus did it all" learn this destructive concept? I will guarantee they did not learn it from the New Testament nor did they hear it from Jesus. They are in deception.

If we are not learning to perform diligently the commands of Jesus and His Apostles, we do not love Jesus. Our "faith" in Jesus is nothing more than mental assent to theologic facts. We do not know the Lord! That is all there is to it.

I have been saying for years, and today am more persuaded than ever, that we are in terrific need of a reformation of Christian thinking.

When we obey the commands of Jesus and His Apostles we reveal that we indeed do love Him. Then the following verse comes to pass:

And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever—the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. (John 14:16,17)

"And I will ask the Father." What tremendous authority the Lord Jesus has been given that He can ask the Father to give us the Spirit of truth!

I have been young and now am old. I have come to the conclusion that the antichrist world spirit is one huge lie. The actions of the politicians are one huge lie. The media continually present one huge lie. The intellectuals of the world in numerous instances convey one huge lie. The American culture, with its pursuit of sexual activity, money, and power is one huge lie. Our whole environment is a lie!

The world is unable to arrive at truth because of its slavery to Satan.

The Spirit of truth lives in Jesus and was with the disciples because He was with them. On the day of Pentecost, the Spirit of truth entered them to abide forever.

I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. (John 14:18)

We might conclude that Jesus is repeating Himself. He just said that the Spirit of truth would be in them, and is repeating this promise by saying He would come to the disciples.

I do not believe such to be the case. This would be to make the Spirit of truth and Jesus to be the same Person. And that is not true. The Christian Church is the wife of the Lamb, not of the Spirit of truth.

The fifth of the seven Jewish feasts is the Blowing of Trumpets. The Blowing of Trumpets comes after the fourth feast, Pentecost.

Pentecost represents the giving of the Spirit of God, the Spirit of truth, to us.

The Blowing of Trumpets speaks of the coming of the King to His disciples prior to His coming in the clouds of to be seen by every eye.

What, then, is the purpose of the Blowing of Trumpets? It is to wage war against the enemies that are in His Church. The Christian churches are filled with lying, hatred, rage, unforgiveness, immorality, gossip, jealousy, and every other devil.

If we will pause our frantic Christian life and listen, I think we will find that Jesus is telling us He wants to enter us and drive out that which is unclean; which is not of the image of God.

He is appearing to us who are looking for Him, not to the world. He will come to the world later when He has a Firstfruits of Christians who are prepared to rise from the dead and ascend to meet Him in the air.

So Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many people; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him. (Hebrews 9:28)

The verse above obviously is not speaking of the worldwide return of the Lord, but of the bringing of salvation to the believers. Such is taking place today for those who have ears to hear.

Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live.

To live by the Life of the Lord Jesus is the rest of God, spoken of in the fourth chapter of the Book of Hebrews. This is God's goal for each of us. Today God is looking for a Firstfruits company of disciples who are willing to set aside their own life that they might live by the Life of Jesus.

These are the believers who will be prepared to pass from death to life, when Jesus next appears, and to ascend to meet Him in the air. This is the first resurrection from the dead. We have to lay aside all else in order to attain to the first resurrection, as did the Apostle Paul.

I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, to attain to the resurrection from the dead. (Philippians 3:10,11)

We can see how high the standard is that must be met by those who hope to be made alive and ascend to meet the Lord when He appears, in that Paul did not feel that he had as yet attained to the resurrection.

But this is no reason for discouragement. If we desire to be among the Firstfruits to God and the Lamb, then we must pray to this end and obey Christ in all He tells us to do; keeping in mind that Jesus said we may ask what we will and it shall be done.

Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. (John 14:19)

We understand from the above that we will see Christ prior to His worldwide appearing in which every eye shall see him.

I believe this is going on now. I myself am experiencing something like this. Christ and His angels are real to me. I do not see Christ as one would in a picture or a vision. It is kind of an awareness. Because of this awareness I speak to Jesus all the time throughout the day and night. I have many needs that keep arising. I have no idea what I would do if Jesus were not continually answering my prayers.

I do not believe the experience of the awareness of Christ is limited to me. It will be the portion of anyone who cares enough to look for it.

On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you. (John 14:20)

The verse above is the rest of God. It is our goal, our Canaan, our land of promise.

You know, the doctrine of the Trinity was formulated by sincere men, devout men. They were attempting to put into words the mystery of the God.

But the only way we can understand the relationship between the Father and the Son is by turning away from our own life and living by the Life of the Lord Jesus.

All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him. (Matthew 11:27)

The program of redemption is progressive. It begins with the blood atonement. Continues with repentance and water baptism. Moves ahead to the born again experience, in which Christ, who Himself is the Kingdom of God, is born in us.

The next step is the baptism with the Holy Spirit, providing us with the ability to cease from sin, and also to assist in the forming of Christ in the members of the Body of Christ with the gifts and ministries the Spirit gives us.

This is the level of God's working to the present hour.

Now the plan of redemption is continuing. Christ is coming to us as Joshua. He is pointing out to us the worldliness, lusts, and self-will in our personality. We are camped at Gilgal, in the plains of Jericho, to speak in a figure.

Our land of promise is before us. Now we have to take our land, inch by inch, as we follow the Spirit of God into battle against everything in our personality that is hindering us from perfect rest in the center of God's Person and will.

The Holy Spirit is helping us confess our sins and turn away from them. All of this so far is to provide a background for the final, climactic work—the rest of God.

We have learned to set aside our own life that we might live by the Life of the Lord Jesus, which absolutely is necessary if we are to attain to that state in which God finds His home and His rest in us.

Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him. (John 14:21)

We show our love for Christ by obeying His commands, not merely by saying we love Him or we believe in Him.

Everything depends on our obeying the commands of Christ and His Apostles. It is the commands of Christ and His Apostles, when we obey them, that lead us into our goal, which is the rest of God.

Today's teaching of lawless grace is destructive of God's plan for us. The doctrines of "faith alone" and "Jesus did it all," which are so pervasive in America today, are able to frustrate the final work of redemption.

Since many who are last are destined to be first in the Kingdom, this may be the reason why these pernicious doctrines are emphasized in our day. I wonder how long it will be before some prominent pastor or evangelist discovers that the teaching of lawless-grace is absolutely contrary to the New Testament?

There is no doubt in my mind that the teaching of lawless-grace is the reason for the moral corruption of our day. With the demons of sexual lust so prevalent, how do we expect people to resist these fiery temptations when in their mind is the concept that "Jesus did it all," and all they need do is believe that Jesus did it all.

People are falling into sexual sin on the right hand and the left, and Divine judgment is about to fall on America as a result of this and other sins.

When we obey Christ's commands the Father loves us (illustrating that they are two different people). Also the Lord Jesus loves us and will show Himself to us. This revelation of Christ is taking place in our day, as I have said previously.

Then Judas (not Judas Iscariot) said, "But, Lord, why do you intend to show yourself to us and not to the world?" (John 14:22)

Jesus' reply does not appear to answer Judas' question: "What is Your reason for doing this?" Sometimes the Lord's thoughts are so high above ours that we cannot grasp them readily.

Jesus replied, "If anyone loves me, he will obey my teaching. My Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him." (John 14:23)

The verse above describes the rest of God.

The purpose of Christ's teaching is to lead us into the rest of God. When we do not obey His teaching, we never enter God's rest. It is as simple as that.

Every aspect of the Divine redemption has as its purpose the preparation of us as a resting place for God. God planned this during the six days of creation and rested on the seventh day. Now His Word is bringing it to pass, and we in our generation are closer to the fulfillment than ever before.

The Father and Christ plan on coming to us and making Their home with us. This is such an awesome concept it staggers the mind.

This is the new Jerusalem. The new Jerusalem is the Tabernacle of God, destined to dwell among people on the new earth, the new world of righteousness.

Wherever we go throughout the creation, the name of God will be on us. We will be the priests of the Lord. Just as in the case of Aaron, we will have no possessions among the inhabitants of the new earth. The Lord Himself is our inheritance.

Yet, we are co-heirs with the Lord Jesus Christ, to whom the Father has given the nations and the farthest reaches of the earth.

To be filled with all the Fullness of God. This is our goal. Each one of us must tell God many times that this is our goal so He can keep us going on the path that leads to His Fullness.

Let us now, with a heart filled with courage and determination, press forward in Christ. With the help of the Lord we will become the eternal House of God, just as our Lord Jesus is.

Never, never, never quit. The trials will be over some day, and you have all eternity to think about how you behaved when you were tested in the fires of the valley of the shadow of death, which our world is.