Our dwelling place

The Verse of the Day for September 6, 2017 comes from John 14:23 in the Amplified Bible:

Jesus answered, “If anyone [really] loves Me, he will keep My word (teaching); and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our dwelling place with him.

This verse begins with the conditional clause “if a man,” followed by the verb “love.” “If an individual loves Jesus Christ, he will adhere to the words that the Lord speaks. If those conditions are met, that individual who meets those conditions will be graced with the very presence of God, the Father and Jesus Christ, His son. John 14:23 establishes the conditions which, if met, will result in a corresponding action on God’s part.

In reflecting upon the Verse of the Day, a parallel verse also comes to mind, as we focus on Revelation 3:20 (Amplified Bible):

Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears and listens to and heeds My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and will eat with him, and he [will eat] with Me.

God has been seeking and continues to seek a dwelling place, a place of intimate fellowship with His creation. Likewise, as believers we are seeking to dwell in the presence of God.

The Psalmist describes this inner yearning to abide in this special place of intimacy:

Psalm 84:1-4:

How lovely is your dwelling place,
O Lord of Heaven’s Armies.
I long, yes, I faint with longing
to enter the courts of the Lord.
With my whole being, body and soul,
I will shout joyfully to the living God.
Even the sparrow finds a home,
and the swallow builds her nest and raises her young
at a place near your altar,
O Lord of Heaven’s Armies, my King and my God!
What joy for those who can live in your house,
always singing your praises.

Psalm 90:1 makes known this truth:

Lord, You have been our dwelling place [our refuge, our sanctuary, our stability] in all generations.

One of the metaphors used to describe born-again believers collectively is that of a building, an edifice, the Temple of the Living God, so described in Ephesians 2:19-22:

19 Now, therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, 20 having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone, 21 in whom the whole building, being fitted together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord, 22 in whom you also are being built together for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.

Our heart’s deepest yearning for intimacy reveals our desire to abide in His presence, as we long to see:

Our Dwelling Transformed

 He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High

shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.

Psalm 91:1


Despite perilous times embroiled in confusion and strife,

We continue to learn that everything has its own price,

As we pursue the ultimate goal, a set apart life:

Joint heirs with Christ, presented as a living sacrifice.

With clean hands and a pure heart, we prepare a dwelling place.

To attract the Lord, we provide a pleasing ambiance:

As our songs of love flow from the depths of our inner space,

Our habitation designed and arrayed for God’s entrance.

To walk by the spirit of life, we are driven to pursue.

We dance to brand new music, softly playing in our mind,

And strive to understand that God alone makes all things new.

As the eyes of the Lord scan this green planet, may they find

A dwelling transformed into a place of simple beauty,

As we offer all that we are and ever hope to be.

Esther Mui offers a tender rendering of Psalm 91 with its reference to God’s dwelling place:

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