Sermon notes for May 2.

GOD’S DWELLING AMONG MORTALS,  
Rev. 21: 1-6, May 2, 2010
 
"See, the home of God is among mortals.
 
OT – Tabernacle / Temple
 
TABERNACLE   The tabernacle was the tent used by the Israelites for meeting with God; the place where God chose to show his presence. The tabernacle was made by God’s command and according to his plans, as described in detail in Exod 26. We read in Exod 40:34 “the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle.”
 
TEMPLE    The temple is the place where the Jewish people worshiped and sacrificed in Jerusalem. The first T was built by King Solomon as a house for God. (2nd --King Herod). (In the NT, the human body becomes the temple)
 
The OT temples were built by Solomon and later rebuilt by King Herod
 
The tabernacle and temple were built by men at God’s command
 
 
NT – Jesus Christ / Holy Spirit (temple)
 
The NT temple of the HS were built by God—God’s creation—no mortal participation
 
Jesus Clears the Temple (John 2)
 
JESUS                 12After this he went down to Capernaum with his mother and brothers and his disciples. There they stayed for a few days.
 
13When it was almost time for the Jewish Passover, Jesus went up to Jerusalem. 14In the temple courts he found men selling cattle, sheep and doves, and others sitting at tables exchanging money. 15So he made a whip out of cords, and drove all from the temple area, both sheep and cattle; he scattered the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. 16To those who sold doves he said, "Get these out of here! How dare you turn my Father's house into a market!"
 17His disciples remembered that it is written: "Zeal for your house will consume me."[b]
 18Then the Jews demanded of him, "What miraculous sign can you show us to prove your authority to do all this?"
 19Jesus answered them, "Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days."
 20The Jews replied, "It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and you are going to raise it in three days?" 21But the temple he had spoken of was his body. 22After he was raised from the dead, his disciples recalled what he had said. Then they believed the Scripture and the words that Jesus had spoken.
 
23Now while he was in Jerusalem at the Passover Feast, many people saw the miraculous signs he was doing and believed in his name.[c] 24But Jesus would not entrust himself to them, for he knew all men. 25He did not need man's testimony about man, for he knew what was in a man.
 
 
BELIEVERS          1 Corinth 6:19Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own;
 
2 Corinth6: 16 16What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols? For we are the temple of the living God. As God has said: "I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people."[c]
 
TEXT:        "See, the home of God is among mortals.
 
*                                     Within this new created order, God places the “new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God” (v. 2). Rather than being a product of even the new created order, the origins of the “new Jerusalem” are in the spiritual realm ( here, referring to God’s abode and not celestial space) and ultimately from the divine self of God. By describing the city “as a bride adorned for her husband,” John crafts an image that evokes not only the beauty of the New Jerusalem but also the loving and intimate relationship those who dwell within it will share with God.

William Loader,
MurdochUniversity, Uniting Church in Australia.
*                   "This passage is a tapestry of Old Testament images of hope." ("First Thoughts on Epistle Passages in the Lectionary," Easter 5)
 
With Jerusalem as the bride and those faithful believers who remain after the last judgment as the bridegroom, this new creation becomes nothing less than the household of God. The divine "tabernacle" had always symbolized God's dwelling place with God's people (Exodus 25:8-9; 29:45; 1 Kings 6:12-13). According to John's fulfilled vision in this new creation, God at last tabernacles, or dwells, with God's people -- as Jewish Scripture had long promised (Leviticus 26:1-12). This indwelling is the fulfillment of both Ezekiel's (37:24-28; 43:7-10) and Zechariah's (2:11) prophetic visions.

 
It is about that intimate relationship that the “voice from the throne” (some manuscripts and so some modern translations read “from heaven”) speaks. As a review of the cross references in most any study Bible make clear, almost every phrase and word spoken echo key passages from the scriptural tradition. What God had long ago promised through the words of the prophets, John insists, will ultimately be brought to reality. Those things that have separated the human and the divine will be gone as God “will dwell” in a “home … among mortals” (21:3, cf. Ezekiel 37:26; the Greek uses a noun and cognate verb to emphasize the point, literally, “the tabernacle of God is among mortals, and he will tabernacle with them”).

Colossians 1: 19
19For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him,
 
The Supremacy of Christ (Col. 1)
 15He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. 17He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. 19For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, 20and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.
 21Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of[f] your evil behavior. 22But now he has reconciled you by Christ's physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation— 23if you continue in your faith, established and firm, not moved from the hope held out in the gospel. This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant.
 

Rev. Rosemary Stelz, First Presbyterian Chruch, Bastrop, Louisiana

 
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