Tuesday, July 30, 2013

In My Father's House (part 9 of 9)

The words that immediately followed from Mary, that “Your father and I have been looking for you anxiously” (Luke 2:48c), receive their post-crucifixion-and-Resurrection echo from the lips of those that are known as the “Emmaus road disciples.”  While unknowingly walking with Jesus, after a three day lapse in time that had been previously and similarly and anxiously experienced by Jesus’ parents, they said “we had hoped that He was the One Who was going to redeem Israel” (24:21a).   

In the Temple courts, Jesus had said to His mother, “Why were you looking for Me?  Didn’t you know that I must be in My Father’s house?” (2:49)  To these two disciples on the road to Emmaus, Jesus said in response to their anxious declaration, “You foolish people---how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken!  Wasn’t it necessary for the Christ to suffer these things and enter into His glory?” (24:26)  What was His glory?  Truly, it was His Father’s house.  It was that which had been the long-intended purpose of the Father (the kingdom of God), that had now been inaugurated in the world through following the Resurrection. 

The Temple was the place of the “shekinah,” which was believed to be the glorious presence of the Creator God, and the singular place within His creation where He had previously said that He would dwell among His people.  This had been a promise.  Now, in Jesus’ resurrected glory, and with the concordant establishment of the kingdom of heaven on earth, the whole world was to be filled with His glory.  The world was once again the Temple, as had been the case at creation.  Those who believed in Jesus as Lord of all came to be thought of as little Temples---the place where heaven and earth intersect and overlap, reflecting the glory of the Creator God into the world. 

With His Resurrection, heaven (the realm of the Creator God’s existence) was unleashed upon earth, and the world would indeed be filled with that glory through those that swore their allegiance to Jesus and His kingdom and the ways of establishing that kingdom that He had demonstrated.  It came to be understood that Jesus, with His Resurrection, did in fact fulfill the hopes of the redemption of Israel, the covenant people of the Creator God, and a new order of creation that had always been connected with the Resurrection of the righteous dead was launched. 

Because of His Resurrection, the Father’s house (the Temple Courts), would now have to be thought of as the kingdom of the Creator God that is a renewed creation that has begun to experience the Resurrection power of the Gospel of Jesus (He is Lord).  Yes, it cannot be said enough that the whole of creation, with Jesus as its King, is now the house and Temple of the covenant God of Israel; and from that time, until the time of the final consummation of that kingdom, Jesus is most certainly in His Father’s house, and about His Father’s business, working His God’s purposes through those who are of a trusting allegiance upon Him and His Lordship.  With such an understanding of the nature of the Father’s house and the Father’s business, as the Temple courts---the place of God’s glory---extends to the entire world, believers join with the disciples, as they were witnesses of His Resurrection and His departure, and are “continually in the Temple courts blessing God” (24:53), “clothed with power from on high” (24:49b).         

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