Examples of the Visible manifestation of God’s Omnipresence

 

Psalms 139: 7 Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence?

 

Luke 5: 17 And it came to pass on a certain day, as he was teaching, that there were Pharisees and doctors of the law sitting by, which were come out of every town of Galilee, and Judaea, and Jerusalem:  and the power of the Lord was [present] to heal them.

 

I spoke in the afternoon [at Stanley, Va.] from John 17: 3. The Lord gave me much of His Holy Spirit. The house was full. I called those forward who wished to seek the Lord more earnestly and for those who wished to give themselves to the Lord a whole sacrifice. For a time not one made a move, but after a while many came forward and bore testimonies of confession. We had a precious season of prayer and all felt broken down, weeping and confessing their sins. O that each may understand!–Diary, Nov. 9, 1890.  {1SM 145.3}

 

Sanctuary Shekinah

 

Exodus 25: 8 And let them make me a sanctuary; that I may dwell among them.

 

Yet

1 Kings 8: 27 But will God indeed dwell on the earth? behold, the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain thee; how much less this house that I have builded?

 

Acts 7: 48 Howbeit the most High dwelleth not in temples made with hands; as saith the prophet, 49 Heaven [is] my throne, and earth [is] my footstool:  what house will ye build me? saith the Lord:  or what [is] the place of my rest?

 

So let us see how God dwells in the physical structures for the Bible cannot contradict itself

 

Exodus 25: 22 And there I will meet with thee, and I will commune with thee from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubims which [are] upon the ark of the testimony, of all [things] which I will give thee in commandment unto the children of Israel.

 

Exodus 29: 38 Now this [is that] which thou shalt offer upon the altar; two lambs of the first year day by day continually. 39 The one lamb thou shalt offer in the morning; and the other lamb thou shalt offer at even:  40 And with the one lamb a tenth deal of flour mingled with the fourth part of an hin of beaten oil; and the fourth part of an hin of wine [for] a drink offering. 41 And the other lamb thou shalt offer at even, and shalt do thereto according to the meat offering of the morning, and according to the drink offering thereof, for a sweet savour, an offering made by fire unto the LORD. 42 [This shall be] a continual burnt offering throughout your generations [at] the door of the tabernacle of the congregation before the LORD:  where I will meet you, to speak there unto thee.  43 And there I will meet with the children of Israel, and [the tabernacle] shall be sanctified by my glory.

 

2Corinthians 3: 17 Now the Lord is that Spirit:  and where the Spirit of the Lord [is], there [is] liberty. 18 But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, [even] as by the Spirit of the Lord.

 

When the high priest entered within the most holy, once a year, and ministered before the ark in the awful presence of God, he inquired, and God often answered him with an audible voice. When the Lord did not answer by a voice, he let the sacred beams of light and glory rest upon the cherubim upon the right of the ark, in approbation, or favor. If their requests were refused, a cloud rested upon the cherubim at the left.  {1SP 399.1}

 

Above the mercy seat was the Shekinah, the manifestation of the divine Presence; and from between the cherubim, God made known His will. Divine messages were sometimes communicated to the high priest by a voice from the cloud. Sometimes a light fell upon the angel at the right, to signify approval or acceptance, or a shadow or cloud rested upon the one at the left to reveal disapproval or rejection.  {PP 349.1}

 

But the second temple had not equaled the first in magnificence; nor was it hallowed by those visible tokens of the divine presence which pertained to the first temple. There was no manifestation of supernatural power to mark its dedication. No cloud of glory was seen to fill the newly erected sanctuary. No fire from Heaven descended to consume the sacrifice upon its altar. The shekinah no longer abode between the cherubim in the most holy place; the ark, the mercy-seat, and the tables of the testimony were not to be found therein. No voice sounded from Heaven to make known to the inquiring priest the will of Jehovah.  {GC88 24.1}

 

Nearly three thousand years ago by divine appointment the temple was built in Jerusalem. The nation of God’s choice had been greatly favored; they dwelt in costly houses while they still worshiped God in the curtained tabernacle. Here the Shekinah, the visible emblem of God’s presence, dwelt between the cherubim, and out of the perfection of beauty God shined. . . . {CTr 154.2}

 

Shekinah Glory Revealed to Isaiah.Christ Himself was the Lord of the temple. When He should leave it, its glory would depart–that glory once visible in the holy of holies over the mercy seat, where the high priest entered only once a year, on the great day of atonement, with the blood of the slain victim (typical of the blood of the Son of God shed for the sins of the world), and sprinkled it upon the altar. This was the Shekinah, the visible pavilion of Jehovah. It was this glory that was revealed to Isaiah, when he says, “In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple” [Isaiah 6:1-8 quoted] (MS 71, 1897).

 

The Burning Bush

 

Exodus 3: 2 And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush:  and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush [was] not consumed. 3 And Moses said, I will now turn aside, and see this great sight, why the bush is not burnt. 4 And when the LORD saw that he turned aside to see, God called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said, Moses, Moses. And he said, Here [am] I.

 

Burning Bush a Reality.–It will baffle the keenest intellect to interpret the divine manifestation of the burning bush. It was not a dream; it was not a vision; it was a living reality,–something that Moses saw with his eyes. He heard the voice of God calling to him out of the bush, and he covered his face, realizing that he stood in the immediate presence of God. God was conversing with humanity. Never could Moses describe the impression made upon his mind by the sight he then saw, and by the sound of the voice that spoke to him; but this impression was never effaced. Heaven came very near to him as, with reverent awe, he listened to the words, “I am the God of thy father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” What wondrous condescension for God to leave the heavenly courts, and manifest Himself to Moses, talking with him face to face, “as a man speaketh unto his friend” (YI, Dec. 20, 1900).

 

The burning bush seen by Moses was also a token of the divine presence, and as he drew nigh to behold the wonderful sight, the same voice which here speaks to Joshua, said to Moses, “Draw not nigh hither. Put off thy shoes from off thy feet, for the place whereon thou standest is holy ground.”  {4aSG 61.5}

 

Before Moses went forth, he received his high commission, his ordination to his great work, in a way that filled him with awe, and gave him a deep sense of his own weakness and unworthiness. While engaged in his round of duties he saw a bush, branches, foliage, and trunk, all burning, yet not consumed. He drew near to view the wonderful sight, when a voice addressed him from out of the flame. It was the voice of God. It was He who, as the angel of the covenant, had revealed himself to the fathers in ages past. The frame of Moses quivered, he was thrilled with terror, as the Lord called him by name. With trembling lips he answered, “Here am I.” He was warned not to approach his Creator with undue familiarity:  “Put off thy shoes from off thy feet; for the place whereon thou standest is holy ground.” “And Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon God.”  {ST, February 26, 1880 par. 2}

 

At Baptism

 

Luke 3: 21 Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that Jesus also being baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened, 22 And the Holy Ghost descended in a bodily shape like a dove upon him, and a voice came from heaven, which said, Thou art my beloved Son; in thee I am well pleased.

 

Never before had angels listened to such a prayer as Christ offered at his baptism, and they were solicitous to be the bearers of the message from the Father to his Son. But, no; direct from the Father issues the light of his glory. The heavens were opened, and beams of glory rested upon the Son of God, and assumed the form of a dove, in appearance like burnished gold. The dove-like form was emblematical of the meekness and gentleness of Christ. While the people stood spell-bound with amazement, their eyes fastened upon Christ, from the opening heavens came these words:  “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” The words of confirmation that Christ is the Son of God was given to inspire faith in those who witnessed the scene, and to sustain the Son of God in his arduous work. Notwithstanding the Son of God was clothed with humanity, yet Jehovah, with his own voice, assures him of his sonship with the Eternal. In this manifestation to his Son, God accepts humanity as exalted through the excellence of his beloved Son.  {2SP 60.2}

 

Transfiguration

 

Luke 9: 33 And it came to pass, as they departed from him, Peter said unto Jesus, Master, it is good for us to be here:  and let us make three tabernacles; one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias:  not knowing what he said. 34 While he thus spake, there came a cloud, and overshadowed them:  and they feared as they entered into the cloud. 35 And there came a voice out of the cloud, saying, This is my beloved Son:  hear him.

 

2Peter 1: 16 For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty. 17 For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. 18 And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount.

 

In the temple Courts with the Greeks

 

John 12: 27 Now is my soul troubled; and what shall I say? Father, save me from this hour:  but for this cause came I unto this hour. 28 Father, glorify thy name. Then came there a voice from heaven, [saying], I have both glorified [it], and will glorify [it] again. 29 The people therefore, that stood by, and heard [it], said that it thundered:  others said, An angel spake to him.

 

Then came divine submission to His Father’s will. “For this cause,” He said, “came I unto this hour. Father, glorify Thy name.” Only through the death of Christ could Satan’s kingdom be overthrown. Only thus could man be redeemed, and God be glorified. Jesus consented to the agony, He accepted the sacrifice. The Majesty of heaven consented to suffer as the Sin Bearer. “Father, glorify Thy name,” He said. As  Christ spoke these words, a response came from the cloud which hovered above His head:  “I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again.” Christ’s whole life, from the manger to the time when these words were spoken, had glorified God; and in the coming trial His divine-human sufferings would indeed glorify His Father’s name.  {DA 624.4}

 

As the voice was heard, a light darted from the cloud, and encircled Christ, as if the arms of Infinite Power were thrown about Him like a wall of fire. The people beheld this scene with terror and amazement. No one dared to speak. With silent lips and bated breath all stood with eyes fixed upon Jesus. The testimony of the Father having been given, the cloud lifted, and scattered in the heavens. For the time the visible communion between the Father and the Son was ended.  {DA 625.1}

 

“The people therefore, that stood by, and heard it, said that it thundered:  others said, An angel spake to Him.” But the inquiring Greeks saw the cloud, heard the voice, comprehended its meaning, and discerned Christ indeed; to them He was revealed as the Sent of God.  {DA 625.2}

 

SEEING GOD FACE TO FACE

 

The objection here is that numerous scriptures declare that “no man hath seen God,” and as many more that he addressed himself to Israel “face to face.” {September 4, 1860 UrSe, ARSH 123.2}

 

We reply to this, 1. That no mention is ever made in the New Testament of seeing God, except in vision, which does not come into this controversy. 2. In many places in the Old Testament, where individuals speak of seeing God, the context shows it to be an “ANGEL.” Thus in Judges xiii, Manoah says to his wife, “We shall surely die, because we have seen God,” and yet this same being in this same chapter is thirteen times called an angel. The Hebrews were accustomed to speak of any of God’s celestial ambassadors as seeing God, and so even the beloved John in the rapture of his mind on the isle of Patmos, fell down to worship at the feet of an angel [Rev.xxii,8]. 3. God did reveal himself to his ancient people in a most wonderful manner. But did they literally behold the face of the great I AM? No. They witnessed the glory of that august Being; he did speak to them “mouth to mouth;” but as Moses expressly declares, “they saw no similitude.” They did see the “Shekinah,” which was alway the symbol of God’s immediate presence, the “cloud of glory,” which was his representative, and to express that familiarity with which God revealed himself to Moses, he says, they talked “face to face.” But Moses really never saw God’s face, any more than we see the sun; we can see the light which radiates from that dazzling orb, and Moses and Israel beheld “the cloud of glory” which enveloped the Lord of hosts.   {September 4, 1860 UrSe, ARSH 123.3}

 

The voice of God had been heard at the baptism of Jesus at the beginning of His ministry, and again at His transfiguration on the mount. Now at the close of His ministry it was heard for the third time, by a larger number of persons, and under peculiar circumstances. Jesus had just spoken the most solemn truth regarding the condition of the Jews. He had made His last appeal, and pronounced their doom. Now God again set His seal to the mission of His Son. He recognized the One whom Israel had rejected. “This voice came not because of Me,” said Jesus, “but for your sakes.” It was the crowning evidence of His Messiahship, the signal from the Father that Jesus had spoken the truth, and was the Son of God.  {DA 625.3}

 

Resurrection

 

Romans 8: 11 But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.

 

Romans 6: 4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death:  that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.

 

Those who are brought in controversy with the enemies of truth have to meet, not only men, but Satan and his agents. Let them remember the Saviour’s words, “Behold, I send you forth as lambs among wolves.” Luke 10: 3. Let them rest in the love of God, and the spirit will be kept calm, even under personal abuse. The Lord will clothe them with a divine panoply. His Holy Spirit will influence the mind and heart, so that their voices shall not catch the notes of the baying of the wolves.  {DA 353.3}

 

For Christ to resurrect the power of the most high, the glory of the Father, his spirit had to overshadow his body.

 

  • [“And, behold, there was a great earthquake: for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven.” Clothed with the panoply of God, this angel left the heavenly courts. The bright beams of God’s glory went before him, and illuminated his pathway. “His countenance was like lightning, and his raiment white as snow:  and for fear of him the keepers did shake, and became as dead men.”  …. This messenger is he who fills the position from which Satan fell. It is he who on the hills of Bethlehem proclaimed Christ’s birth. The earth trembles at his approach, the hosts of darkness flee, and as he rolls away the stone, heaven seems to come down to the earth. The soldiers see him removing the stone as he would a pebble, and hear him cry, Son of God, come forth; Thy Father calls Thee. They see Jesus come forth from the grave, and hear Him proclaim over the rent sepulcher, “I am the resurrection, and the life.” As He comes forth in majesty and glory, the angel host bow low in adoration before the Redeemer, and welcome Him with songs of praise.  {DA 779. 2, 3}.

 

When the divine spirit comes in contact with humanity and overshadows it, life is begotten. The disconnect through divine sundering is restored. The glory which he came from the tomb with was that panoply from the throne of that accompanied the angels. God gave him glory [1Peter 1: 21]

 

Jesus is waiting to breathe upon all His disciples, and give them the inspiration of His sanctifying Spirit, and transfuse the vital influence from Himself to His people. He would have them understand that henceforth they cannot serve two masters. Their lives cannot be divided. Christ is to live in His human agents, and work through their faculties, and act through their capabilities. Their will must be submitted to His will, they must act with His Spirit that it may be no more they that live, but Christ that liveth in them. Jesus is seeking to impress upon them the thought that in giving His Holy Spirit He is giving to them the glory which the Father has given Him, that He and His people may be one in God. Our way and will must be in submission to God’s will, knowing that it is holy, just, and good.–Signs of the Times, Oct. 3, 1892.

 

“I will not leave you comfortless; I will come to you” (John 14: 18). The divine Spirit that the world’s Redeemer promised to send is the presence and power of God. He will not leave His people in the world destitute of His grace, to be buffeted by the enemy of God, and harassed by the oppression of the world; but He will come to them.–ST, Nov. 23, 1891.

 

Jesus responds to the demands of the centurion by commanding him, “Go thy way; thy son liveth.” These brief and simple words thrill through the heart of the father; he feels the holy power of the speaker in every tone. Instead of going to Capernaum, Jesus, by a flash of divine telegraphy, sends the message of healing to the bedside of the suffering son. He dismisses the suppliant, who, with unspeakable gratitude, and perfect faith in the words of the Saviour, turns his steps homeward with a peace and joy he has never felt before.  {3Red 17.3}

 

When trials overshadow the soul, remember the words of Christ, remember that He is an unseen presence in the person of the Holy Spirit, and He will be the peace and comfort given you, manifesting to you that He is with you, the Sun of Righteousness, chasing away your darkness. “If a man love me,” Christ said, “he will keep my words:  and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.”  Be of good cheer; light will come, and your soul will rejoice greatly in the Lord.–Letter 124, 1897. {DG 185.2}

 

Those who rose up with Jesus would send up their faith to Him in the holiest, and pray, “My Father, give us Thy Spirit.” Then Jesus would breathe upon them the Holy Ghost. In that breath was light, power, and much love, joy, and peace.  {EW 55.1}

 

Vivid encounter with the Spirit of the Lord

 

We then returned to Vermont. Again my voice failed me. We had an appointment at Johnson, and found quite a number of brethren and sisters collected. Some were in a perplexed and tried condition. Certain fanatics had imposed upon them, and cast a fear over them which held them in bondage. The conscientious were so fearful of offending God, and had so little confidence in themselves, that they dared not rise and assert their liberty. The night after we arrived I fainted a number of times through weakness. But in answer to prayer I was revived, and strength was given me of the Lord to go through the meeting. We knew that the next day we should have to battle with the powers of darkness, and that Satan would muster his forces. In the morning the individuals who had so long deceived and oppressed God’s children came into the meeting, Libbey and Bailey, and two females, with white linen dresses to represent the righteousness of the saints, and their long, black hair hung loose about their shoulders. I had a message for them, and while I was speaking L. kept his black eyes fastened upon me, but I had no fear of his influence. Strength was given me from heaven to rise above their satanic power. The children of God who had been held in bondage began to breathe free, and rejoice in the Lord.  {2SG 131.1}

 

As our meeting progressed, these fanatics sought to rise and speak, but they could not find opportunity. But as prayer was being offered at the close of the meeting, B. came to the door and commenced speaking. The door was closed upon him. He opened the door, and again commenced to speak. The power of God fell upon my husband, and the color left his face. He arose from his knees, and as he laid his hand upon B., exclaimed, “The Lord does not want your testimony here. The Lord does not want you here to distract and crush his people!” The power of God filled the room, and B. commenced to walk backward out of the house. The power of God in the house was painful to that fanatical party. B. looked terrified. He staggered and came near falling to the floor. The place was awful on account of the presence of the Lord. All that company of darkness left the place, and the sweet Spirit of the Lord rested upon his dear, tried children. The cause of God in Vt. had been cursed by fanatical spirits, but at this meeting they received a check which they never recovered from.  {2SG 131.2}

 

Friday, March 20, I arose early, about half past three o’clock in the morning. While writing upon the fifteenth chapter of John suddenly a wonderful peace came upon me. The whole room seemed to be filled with the atmosphere of heaven. A holy, sacred presence seemed to be in my room. I laid down my pen and was in a waiting attitude to see what the Spirit would say unto me. I saw no person. I heard no audible voice, but a heavenly watcher seemed close beside me; I felt that I was in the presence of Jesus.  {3SM 35.5}

 

The sweet peace and light which seemed to be in my room it is impossible for me to explain or describe. A sacred, holy atmosphere surrounded me, and there were presented to my mind and understanding matters of intense interest and importance. A line of action was laid out before me as if the unseen presence was speaking with me. The matter I had been writing upon seemed to be lost to my mind and another matter distinctly opened before me. A great awe seemed to be upon me as matters were imprinted upon my mind.–Manuscript 12c, 1896.  {3SM 35.6}

 

I arose early Thursday morning, about two o’clock, and was writing busily upon the True Vine, when I felt a presence in my room, as I have many times before, and I lost all recollection of what I was about. I seemed to be in the presence of Jesus. He was communicating to me that in which I was to be instructed. Everything was so plain that I could not misunderstand.  {3SM 36.1}

 

I was to help one whom I thought I should never be called upon to be troubled with again. I could not understand what it meant, but at once decided not to try to reason about this, but follow the directions. Not an audible word was spoken to my ear, but to my mind. I said, “Lord, I will do as Thou has commanded.”–Letter 36, 1896.  {3SM 36.2}

 

When the love of Christ is enshrined in the heart, like sweet fragrance it cannot be hidden. The holy influence it reflects through the character will be manifest to all. Christ will be formed within, “the hope of glory.” His light and his love will be there; his presence will be felt. There have been times when the blessing of God has been bestowed in answer to prayer, so that when others have come into the room, no sooner did they step over the threshold than they exclaimed. “The Lord is here!” Not a word had been uttered; but the blessed influence of God’s holy presence was sensibly felt. The joy that comes from Jesus Christ was there; and in this sense the Lord had been in the room just as verily as he walked through the streets of Jerusalem, or appeared to the disciples when they were in the upper chamber, and said, “Peace be unto you.”  {RH, January 4, 1887 par. 7}

 

When the darkness of unbelief is so dense and far-reaching, the revealing of God’s glory, the Shekinah of His presence will scatter the darkness. We must work in Jesus. His grace must be sought for, cherished, and exemplified in our lives. 3LtMs, Lt 40, 1879, par. 5

 

God bless

 

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