Monday, July 8, 2013

The Omnipresence Nature of God

One Sunday morning a lecturer in a theological college was sharing a seat on a train with a small boy as he went to church. The boy was holding in his hand his Sunday School lesson leaflet, The lecturer sitting beside him was interested, and asked - in a friendly way - a question of the young boy. He said: 'Can I ask you a question?'. 'Yes sir, you can'. 'Tell me my boy', continued the man - thinking to have some fun with the lad - 'Where is God? If you can tell me where God is, I'll give you an apple!'. The boy looked up at the theological lecturer sharply, and promptly replied: 'I'll give you a whole barrel of apples if you can tell me where God is not'. Isn't that right? The child had more wisdom!

One of the attribute of God is He is Omnipresence. He is everywhere. God is present everywhere; His presence fills the universe.  In fact, all of His presence is everywhere the same. God is not localized to one place where His power is concentrated while elsewhere it is less evident.  Since God fills the universe, He is not separated by time or space from anything. Everything is in His presence.

In Jeremiah 23:23-24 the Lord says. “ “Am I only a God nearby,” declares the LORD, “and not a God far away?  Who can hide in secret places so that I cannot see them?” declares the LORD.    “Do not I fill heaven and earth?” declares the LORD.“  God is with present everywhere. As A.W. Tozer said: 'The notion that there is a God, but that He is comfortably far away, is not embodied in the doctrinal statement of the Christian church'. We do not believe that God is in heaven alone, that God is separated from us, that we are far from God in a geographical sense.

The inspired psalmist David adds “Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast. If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,” even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you. “ (Psalm 139:7–12).  To show the amazing nature of God’s omnipresence, the psalmist introduces a series of hypothetical propositions. He suggests that even if he could do the following things — which he could not — God would still be there before him.

• What if one could go to the farthest corner of the physical universe, or what if man could explore the deepest recesses of the spiritual world? God would be there (v. 8).

•    What if one could travel at the speed of light, to the remotest region of the globe? God would be there as well (vv. 9-10).

•    What if a person could be instantly shrouded in absolute darkness? God would see him as if it were broad daylight (vv. 11-12).
What a comfort it is to know that God is with us always and in every place. Ralph Waldo Emerson said: “Nature is too thin a screen, the glory of the omnipresent God bursts through it everywhere!”  All around us we can see that God is around us in creation - we can see Him.

While God’s omnipresence is a comfort to us on one hand, on the other it should warn us that we cannot hide from God. As the Psalmist said, there is no place in heaven, earth, or hell, where men may hide themselves from God's presence. God is in His creation, God is here in His universe, He is present, He is not detached - 'From a distance God is watching us'? No! God is here!

Be Blessed.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Boldness & Courage

I love Billy Graham's quote on courage that says "Courage is contagious. When a brave man takes a stand, the spines of others are often stiffened".

We can learn something on boldness and courage from the incredible survival story of Sir Ernest Shackleton. Early in the twentieth century, Sir Ernest Shackleton made a voyage to Antarctica. Shortly into their voyage, the ship trapped in ice and remained moored in the frozen sea for ten months before being crushed under tremendous glacial pressure.

Attempting to save his shipmates, Shackleton and his crewmen made what many consider to be the greatest ocean crossing in history. Shackleton and his men marched across drifting ice floes to reach land, and then continued on to the nearest outpost, nearly 1,200 miles away. They hauled whatever supplies they were able to retrieve from their sinking ship into a life boat and drag it by foot. When they reached waters clear enough to navigate, they faced waves as high as ninety feet! They finally reached South Georgia Island, and were told later that the vastness of water they crossed had never been attempted before. Shackleton survived the seas. He rescued his crew and won a spot in history.

Eventually Shackleton and his crew reached their destination, the chosen point for beginning their trek across Antarctica. They were so unkempt that their friends took some time to recognize them.

When asked about the experience, each man said that he had felt the presence of One unseen, who had guided them. Each man had a feeling that he was not alone and that he would survive.

We too can act boldly in our circumstances. We’re never alone, we’ll make it! We just need to take a bold step of faith, and watch what God will do. The author of Hebrews says "Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need." - Hebrews 4:16