CHRIST, THE HOUSE OF GOD
CHRIST, THE HOUSE OF GODCopyright Š 2011 Trumpet Ministries, Inc. All Rights Reserved
("Christ, the House of God"is taken from Christ In You, copyright Š 2011 Trumpet Ministries, Inc., found in the Kindle Library)
Christ Himself is the eternal House of God. God the Father finds His rest only in Christ, never in any human being apart from Christ.
No man has seen God at any time. Christ, who dwells eternally in God, has come to reveal the Father to us.
There were several occasions before the coming of Christ when God appeared to men. Some of those occasions are described in the Old Testament. In every instance it was Christ or the Angel of the Lord who appeared. No human being ever has seen God the Father (John 1:18).
Christ is the Divine Word of God, the Expression of all that God Is. When we see Christ we see the Father.
God is a Spirit, not a human being. God requires the shedding of innocent blood in order to appease His sense of violated justice. We understand by this that God is different from us.
Christ was born of a woman. Therefore we can establish a relationship with Him and make progress in coming to know Him. It is the good pleasure of Christ to reveal God to us.
God desires that the Incarnation, the Divine Expression be magnified so that every person on the earth may have access to Himself. Therefore God is multiplying Christ; for God will dwell only in Christ. Christ is the House of God.
God is magnifying and multiplying Christ by creating the Body of Christ. As Christ is being formed in the members of His Body, Christ is being magnified and multiplied and God in Him.
It is not Christ-likeness being formed in us that is so crucial to the purpose of God, it is that Christ is being formed in us. Christ is the true Vine. We are not additional vines, we are branches growing out from the one true Vine.
As Christ is being formed in the members of His Body He comes through the Spirit and dwells in those transformed members. As Christ comes and dwells in the members, God dwells in Christ in the members. He who has the Son has the Father also.
God in Christ in the members of the Body of Christ constitutes the Kingdom of God that John the Baptist announced, that Christ announced, that Paul taught, and that will be revealed to the world at the appearing of the Lord Jesus Christ from Heaven with the saints and holy angels.
Christ in us is the mystery of the Gospel of the Kingdom of God. Christ is the House of God, the eternal Temple of God.
When Christ is in us the House of God is in us. When we are in Christ and abiding in Him, we are in the Temple of God and abiding in it.
When we are abiding in Christ, and Christ in us, God's plan for our life has been brought to completion and perfection. We have become a living stone in the eternal Temple of God.
It was necessary that Christ return to the Father so we may become places of abode in God's house.
In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. (John 14:2)
"In my Father's house."
The Father's House is Christ and the Body of Christ. Several times in the fourteenth through the seventeenth chapters of the Gospel of John, Christ spoke of returning to the Father.
Christ did not speak of returning to Heaven as to a place, He spoke of returning to His Father as to a Person. Heaven is not the goal of the Christian pilgrimage, the Father Himself is our Goal. It makes a practical difference in our life whether we choose Heaven or choose God as our goal.
Christ declared that He was going to the Father:
. . . he should depart out of this world unto the Father, having loved his own which were in the world, he loved them unto the end. (John 13:1)
. . . I go unto the Father: . . . . (John 14:28)
I came forth from the Father, and am come into the world: again, I leave the world, and go to the Father. (John 16:28)
Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. (John 14:6)
"No man cometh unto the Father"!
The context of the "many mansions" is not Heaven, it is our abiding in Christ and He in us. We abide in Christ who abides in the Father who abides in Christ who abides in us. This is the Kingdom of God.
Christ is preparing a place for us in God.
Lord, thou hast been our dwelling place in all generations. (Psalms 90:1)
Chapter 14 of John has to do with our becoming an abiding place in the Father's house. Theme of this part of the Scripture is, "Abide in me, and I in you." The verb abide (John 15:4) is related to the Greek noun translated mansions, in John 14:2. Both words come from the same root.
Heaven is God's throne. Nebuchadnezzar was instructed that "the heavens do rule" (Daniel 4:26).
The Scriptures do not refer to Heaven as the house of God. The eternal House, the Temple, of God is our Lord Jesus Christ.
For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. (Colossians 2:9)
Under the old covenant, God dwelled in the Tabernacle of the Congregation and then in Solomon's Temple. Under the new covenant, God finds His resting place only in people.
God will dwell only in Christ. Christ was not formed in any individual until after His resurrection from the dead. Therefore God did not abide in any believer under the old covenant.
God abides in every member of the Body of Christ. This is one of the principal differences between the old covenant and the new covenant. This is the reason he who is least in the Kingdom of God is greater than any of the prophets of Israel (Luke 7:28).
The "mystery" of Christ in you was suggested briefly in the Old Testament:
Thus saith the Lord, The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: where is the house that ye build unto me? and where is the place of my rest? (Isaiah 66:1)
Why does the God of Heaven need a house, a place of rest? Here is a mystery.
The Spirit of God asked the question againthis time through Stephen:
But Solomon built him an house. Howbeit the most High dwelleth not in temples made with hands; as saith the prophet, Heaven is my throne, and earth is my footstool: what house will ye build me? saith the Lord: or what is the place of my rest? (Acts 7:47-49)
As we have stated, God will dwell only in the Lord Jesus Christ. When Christ has been formed in us and is abiding in us through the Spirit, we become a room in the Temple of God.
Notice that Christ is the eternal Temple of God:
Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works. (John 14:10)
We become a part of the Temple.
That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. (John 17:21)
Christ is the "Zion" in whom the Father dwells forever (Psalms 68:15-18).
Christ went to prepare a place for us in Zion:
"In My Father's House are many mansions."
The New Testament writings never once refer to a building as the house of God nor is Heaven ever referred to as the house of God. The concept of God and Christ coming to dwell in the saints is a major topic of the Apostle John and the Apostle Paul.
Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. (John 14:23)
Here is the fulfillment under the new covenant of the old covenant feast of Tabernacles (Leviticus 23:33-43).
The Greek noun translated abode , in John 14:23, is translated mansions, in John 14:2.
I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me. (John 17:23)
And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. (II Corinthians 6:16)
In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit. (Ephesians 2:21,22)
Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name. (Revelation 3:12)
When the Lord Jesus ascended to Heaven He gave gifts of ministry to the saints. The purpose of the gifts is that we may be brought to the "measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ," to the measure of the stature of the fullness of the eternal House of God (Ephesians 4:13).
The Divine purpose in building the Body of Christ is explained in Psalms 68:18.
Thou hast ascended on high, thou hast led captivity captive: thou hast received gifts for men; yea, for the rebellious also, that the Lord God might dwell among them. (Psalms 68:18)
ChristHead and Bodyis the "hill," Zion, in which God will dwell forever.
There are many dwelling places in the Father's house.
"If it were not so, I would have told you."
If Christ were to remain as the only room in the Father's house the dealings of God with the believer would not be nearly as intense and exhaustive as they are. Because we are being made rooms in the Father's eternal Temple, God works, works, works with us continually. The seemingly endless training and testing are portrayed by the various measurements included in the vision of the Temple of God that was given to the Prophet Ezekiel.
When the Body of Christ has been built to the standard of perfection and unity that God requires for His dwelling place, the Head will return and raise His Body from the dead. The Divine standard of maturity and completion is expressed as "the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ."
When the Lord shall build up Zion, he shall appear in his glory. (Psalms 102:16)
"I go to prepare a place for you."
Where did Christ go? He went to the Father.
Before that, He went to Gethsemane and Calvary. The Lord Jesus Christ went to the cross in order to prepare a place for us in the Father. Then He rose from the dead and sprinkled His blood upon and before the Mercy Seat in Heaven. After that He poured out the Holy Spirit of God and gave gifts of ministry to the members of His Body. All of this was done in order to prepare a place for us in the eternal dwelling place of God.
It was not possible for any human being to become part of the House of God while Jesus was alive on the earth. In order to become part of the House of God we must become part of Christ. How can one person become part of another?
Christ Himself is the Way to the Father.
In order for any individual to become a part of Christ, a part of the eternal Temple of God, his sins must be forgiven. All relationships with Satan must be severed. The effects of sin must be healed. His personality must be transformed by being made one with the Personality of Christ.
In addition to this, Christ Himself had to be broken so the saint may be grafted on the Personality of Christ. The door into Christ was opened when the soldier pierced His side with the spear.
Christ was cut open, the believer is cut open, and wound is placed against wound. The "tape" of the Holy Spirit is wrapped around the two until healing occurs and the disciple becomes one with His Lord. The wounding and grafting occurs at a critical point in our Christian growth.
"I go to prepare a place for you."
To Gethsemane, to an unjust trial, to the cross, to Hell; and then up from the grave Christ arose to sprinkle His blood upon and before the Mercy Seat in Heaven.
The blood upon the Mercy Seat satisfies the Divine justice. The blood before the Mercy Seat prepares the way for us into the Presence of God Himself.
Christ sprinkles us with His blood and gives us of His body to eat and His blood to drink. The eternal Temple of God is constructed from the body and blood of Christ.
The ascended Christ gave ministries and gifts to His Body so the Body may be formed in His image and made one in Christ in God. The Body of Christ is the eternal Temple of God. The Temple requires extensive, elaborate preparation and refinement.
Christ has sealed each of us with a firstfruits portion of the Holy Spirit of God, looking toward the Day of Redemption when our whole spirit, soul, and body are filled with the Spirit of God.
Christ Himself has been born and is being formed in us.
Christ Himself is at the right hand of God, making intercession as High Priest on the behalf of each Christian.
Then Christ Himself comes to us in fulfillment of the feast of Tabernacles (Leviticus 23:34). He stands at the door of our heart, and knocks (Revelation 3:20). If we hear His voice and open the door, Christ comes in to us. We dine together on His broken body and shed blood. This is the celebration of the new covenant. It is a love feast.
We can understand, from the preceding paragraphs, that it was not possible for any human being to become a room in God's eternal Temple before Christ went to the cross and rose again from the dead. He went to prepare a place for us in Himself who is God's House.
When Christ comes into us and we dine with Him on His body and blood, the eternal House of God has come into us and is sharing His Divine Substance and Nature with us. Now we have become one of the abiding places in the Abiding Place of God.
Sometimes we question the many variedand often perplexing and painfuldealings of God with us. We begin to think God has forgotten about us.
God is faithful. He never forgets!
The most important question God asks and He keeps on asking itis, "Do you love me?"
If the Kingdom of God were to remain external to our personality, then (as we have stated previously) the demands on us would be but a small fraction of what they are.
Because the Kingdom of God is God in Christ in the saint, our transformation must be total! absolute! final! The issue is that of the marriage of the Lamb. Christ prepares a place for us in Himself, and for Himself in us. It is a two-way abiding, a two-way dining.
And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. (Revelation 21:3)
The new Jerusalem is the Wife of the Lamb, the many-roomed house of the Father, the Tabernacle of God.
And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it. (Revelation 21:22)
Today there is a temple of God in Heaven (Isaiah 6:1). But there is no temple of God in the new Jerusalem, except for God and the Lamb.
There no longer is a separating veil, a gap between the Lord and the sons of God. Our marriage to the Lamb has removed the gap between God and us.
The aspects of redemption we shall be presenting in the remainder of this book have as their purpose the removing of the veil between God and us. God desires to close the gap. We are not always willing to receive Christ to this extent.
The Lord God of Heaven cannot wipe away the tears of mankind until His Church, His Bride, is willing to become the living tabernacle that He envisions. It is through the perfected Bride that God will heal the nations of the saved.
The most important issue of Christianity is our abiding in Christ and His abiding in us.
If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you. (John 15:7)