Access to God
Have you ever heard the song He Walks with Me? If you’re from the south, you’ve probably heard a Merle Haggard southern drawl version; you might have even sung this in church. The lyrics say, “ I come to the garden alone while the dew is still on the roses and the voice I hear falling on my ear, the son of God discloses and he walks with me and he talks with me and he tells me I am his own and the joy we share as we tarry there, none other has ever known.”
The sweetness about this song is that we can quickly take for granted the current access we have to God and the promise of the access of eternity.
In the beginning, God walked with Adam and Eve. Genesis 3:8 explains that they were living in this heavenly garden and they were together. That was until God kicks them out as punishment for disobeying. The Old Testament goes on to tell us stories of the Tabernacle and eventually Solomon’s temple.
The Tabernacle (learn more in the She Leads Daily Tabernacle Study) is instructed by God for how to create a dwelling place for Him. Only certain priests had access to this dwelling place. It wasn’t a permanent place since the people of Israel were in exile. The Tabernacle was a traveling dwelling place.
Then comes the temple which is a permanent location for God’s dwelling place and is still only accessible for certain people.
But God had a plan. If you follow the set up of the temple, you see that the veil separates the holy place which would keep all people, except the high priest, from being in the place of God’s dwelling. The veil is not just a curtain that would be easy to tear.
“It was now about the sixth hour, and there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour, while the sun’s light failed. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. Then Jesus, calling out with a loud voice, said, 'Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!’ And having said this he breathed his last.” (Luke 23:44-46, English Standard Version)
The veil being torn from top to bottom gives us free access to the presence of God. Jesus’ death is a gift of salvation and of experiencing His presence.
The beginning of new life is God breathed. In Genesis, He spoke everything into existence and breathed life into everything. The Greek word for Spirit is πνεῦμα, pneuma and it means wind or breath. The Spirit then comes upon the disciples at Pentecost in Acts 1-2, which eventually gives us the ability to access God’s presence freely.
The full circle of the story is that when God fully restores His creation, we as believers will all be walking in eternity with God. Access to Him will be unimaginably sweet. Creation will be restored to the sweetest walks in the presence of God. Let us not take for granted that Jesus’ death not only opens the gates of Heaven, but also tore the curtain to give us free access to the Spirit of God.