One of the most profound realities that is revealed with the unfolding revelation of the Bible is the fact that the Tabernacle and the Temples, that are introduced later on, into the revelation of God revealing of Himself, via the Holy Scriptures, is NOT the ultimate objective of where God wishes to dwell, with regard to His union with humanity. God wishes to dwell within the hearts of humanity that turn to Him. His Spirit joined with our spirit, which was, as you recall, where the original break occurred.
Ezekiel 36:26-27 NASB
“Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will be careful to observe My ordinances.”
But as I have already indicated previously, there is also a profound problem that not only needs to be rectified, but from the perspective of humanity, understood.
That which comes from flesh is flesh and that which comes from the Spirit is spirit.
John 3:1-7 NASB
“Now there was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews; this man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, “Rabbi, we know that You have come from God as a teacher; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him.” Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Nicodemus *said to Him, “How can a man be born when he is old? He cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born, can he?” Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not be amazed that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’”
This reality, of needing to be born again, via God’s Spirit being joined again with our spirit, has one huge hinderance, and that of course is the fact that God is Holy and we of the flesh are not. So what God does, right at the beginning of His revelation of Himself to humanity, via the Holy Scriptures, is lay out the ground work, so to speak, of how we get from point “A” to point “B”.
The thing is, one can read through these Scriptures and not see what is literally laid out before us.
As I pointed out at the beginning of this series, this is only a “bird’s eye view” and as such, I am only going to lightly touching on some of the highlights or “bigger steps” that God not only explains but also illustrates via material physical objects.
Of course, we are introduced to many individual people within the Holy Scriptures, such as Cain and Abel, Enoch and Noah, and each and every one of them reveals a particular aspect of trusting in and believing in God. But we, in this series, are going to touch on some of the “bigger steps” and those bigger steps initially involve individuals such as Abraham, Isaac, Joseph, Moses and David.
Think of this picture that is going to be developed before your eyes as something like a paint by numbers picture. The outline is there but what we will be doing is colouring in different sections (individual people) until, over time, a completed coloured picture appears.
And the first part of this coloured picture we are going to focus on is Abram.
All of the individual people that God reveals to us in the Holy Scriptures are important, otherwise God in His wisdom, would not have put them into His revealing revelation. But Abram is definitely one of the “bigger” stepping stones that we need to look at.
In Genesis 12:1 the Lord speaks to Abram and in Genesis 12:7 the Lord appears to Abram. Please take the time to read these quoted Scriptures as we go along because it is important for context. This is the recording of a relationship beginning between God and an individual. In Genesis 15:1 Abram has a vision and in Genesis 15:6 the Holy Scriptures state that Abram trusted in God and that it was counted as righteousness. One needs to remember that this is before the Law. And that this relationship was initiated by God towards Abram and that the basis for Abram being accepted by God as righteous, is that Abram believed and trusted in God.
Does any Scripture verse from the New Testament come to mind?
Hebrews 11:6 NASB
“And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.“
I would also strongly recommend that as we go through this Back To Square One series, read through the Book of Hebrews because it fills in a lot of the smaller paint strokes that this “bird’s eye overview” unfortunately does not touch on. Think of Hebrews as a “4K” definition picture rather than the standard High Definition (HD) picture we are currently looking at.
In Genesis 17:1 the Lord again appears to Abram (please take the time to note what is said in each of these Scripture quotes) and in Genesis 17:5 Abram’s name is changed by God to Abraham. In Genesis 17:14 circumcision is instituted as a sign of Abraham’s agreement with the covenant from God and in Genesis 17:22 God spoke with Abraham and went up from him. In Genesis 18:1 the Lord again appears to Abraham and in Genesis 18:22 Abraham stands before the Lord. In Genesis 22:1-8 Abraham starts to go to sacrifice Isaac, but is stopped (Genesis 22:9-14) and in Genesis 22:15-19 the Angel of the Lord appears to Abraham and blesses him.
Put yourself in the place of Abraham.
Pay particular attention to what Abraham visually sees and what he hears. Note what the physical representation of circumcision is a picture of (Deuteronomy 10:16) and who initiates all that unfolds within this narrative. We know that elsewhere in the Holy Scriptures it says that man is not able to see God (the Father) face to face and live (Exodus 33:20) so this had to be Jesus appearing to Abraham prior to His incarnation as God and the Angel of the Lord (John 8:48-59).
And note in particular that God takes the trust and obedience that Abraham exhibits and counts this as righteousness. Also note that Abram has human weakness and short comings such as fear with regard to Sarah his wife (Genesis 20:2-11).
This trust and obedience is the fundamental first step in entering into a relationship with God and it is God that initiates everything thereafter.
Genesis 22:8 NASB also is particularly noteworthy:
“Abraham said, “God will provide for Himself the lamb for the burnt offering, my son.” So the two of them walked on together.”
John 1:29 NASB
“The next day he saw Jesus coming to him and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!”
But wait, there is much more to be revealed!
Worthy is the Lamb! Blessings!