I started by saying that, in the Old Testament, God’s name and His presence were virtually synonymous, which was evidenced in His name Jehovah-shammah, meaning the Lord is present or there.
Jehovah-shammah, dwelling on the throne of heaven, lowered Himself to earth to be born in another form, to live personally with His people.
In the New Testament, Jehovah-shammah appeared as Jesus, as scripture says, “‘They shall call His name Immanuel,’ translated as, ‘God with us,’” (Matt. 1:23b NKJV) and “the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” (John 1:14 NKJV)
After Jesus’ death and resurrection, He returned to the Father’s side, which resulted in Him having two homes…heaven and a believer’s heart.
If you are a believer, God resides within you now as Immanuel, for “your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God.” (1 Cor. 6:19a NLT)
Jesus said, “And be sure of this – that I am with you always, even to the end of the world.” (Matt. 28:20 TLB) If we could rephrase that, we could think of it this way, “And be sure of this, I am with you wherever you go.”
When a bride takes the name of her husband, she becomes one with him. Filled with love for him, she carries his name and presence within her, and, in essence, he is always with her. In the same way, we now carry the Bridegroom’s name and presence within us, for He says each of us is “a chosen vessel of Mine to bear My name.” (Acts 9:15 NKJV)
Consequently, as His vessels, we cannot mistreat His home, physically, mentally, or spiritually, by allowing anything we think, feel, say, or do to contaminate His living room.
Since He lives within us, where do we take Jesus? Where do our footsteps take us throughout any given 24 hours? To work, to school, to do chores, to run errands, to appointments, to see friends, to church?
So, where else do we go or do? To bed with someone other than our spouses, to see wrong movies, to watch internet porn, to cheat a business partner, to ruin the reputation of a competitor or a friend?
The world’s way cannot be our way, for the standards of the world are in opposition to the holiness of God. God has not lowered the bar of His standards nor relaxed His tolerance for sin because of the world’s beliefs.
Remember, where you are on Saturday night represents who and what you say you are on Sunday morning!
So, what does God expect of us? The answer lies in the requirements God gave Israel through Moses, “So now Israel, what do you think God expects from you? Just this: Live in His presence in holy reverence, follow the road He sets out for you, love Him, serve God, your God, with everything you have in you, obey the commandments and regulations of God that I’m commanding you today – live a good life.” (Deut. 10:2 Msg)
God fills us with His holiness but the upkeep of that holiness depends solely on us. It is absolutely necessary, as Paul persuades, “Dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.” (2 Cor. 7:1 NKJV)
The fear of the Lord, for a child of God, is a healthy fear that dreads displeasing the heavenly Parent. It is not a negative thing. The fear of the Lord means to have a deep respect and reverence for Him that compels us to be obedient to His will and His Word and to live a life that results in honor, worship, humility, and total submission to Him.
How well do we do that?
“Whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” (1 Cor. 10:31b NIV)