PRESENT TRUTHS AND PRINCIPLES
CONCERNING THE HOUSE OF GOD
BY: TROY NICHOLS
THE HOUSE OF THE LORD
THE DOOR TO THE HOUSE OF THE LORD
Ps 122:1 I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the LORD.
- There are a great number of people today that are fed up with going to church and going through the same routine week after week.
- They are fed up with going to church and leaving just like they came if not worse.
- They are tired of the hypocrisy in the brethren as well as in the leadership. Job 15:34 says that the congregation of hypocrites shall be desolate!
- Some have quit church and vowed to never step foot in one again.
- Some I am convinced have not given up. They are out looking for a church wherein they can experience the Lord, learn of the Lord, grow up into the Lord and finally, be used of the Lord to help others! With that said, let us look at Psalms 122:1 and learn about the House of the Lord.
Ps 122:1 I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the LORD.
- Note the psalmist was GLAD. Going to the House of the Lord was a subject that brought him great joy and anticipation.
- One English rendering of GLAD is to be very willing. You didn’t have to plead with this man to go into the House of the Lord. He was not only willing; he was VERY WILLING!
- I think it important to point out that he was GLAD when they invited him into the House of the Lord. I see a principle here in that one might be feeling down but could be lifted in spirit with an invitation to go into the House of the Lord.
- What kind of response do you get from those that you invite to your church? Are they glad and can’t wait to get there? How about, I have other plans, I don’t have anything to wear, I am tired, I wish you had called earlier; I don’t get anything out of service. These type answers reveal problems in different areas and need to be addressed when the time permits with this individual.
- What is your personal response when it comes time to go to your church? Does anticipation and gladness arise, is it a big chore, would you rather be doing something else, do you dread it, would you rather go to another church? Your answer to this question will be very beneficial for the Pastor. Simply being, if you are glad and coming with great anticipation, this would show the Pastor that the Lord is appearing in the services. However, if you dread coming and would rather be in another church, this would alert the Pastor that something may be wrong. In this case, the Pastor would be wise to get right on top of this situation before members start leaving the church.
Ps 122:1 I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go INTO the house of the LORD
- Have you ever invited someone TO church?
- One English rendering of to is towards a given state. The principle being, one can come TO church and fall short of coming INTO the church. I can say it another way; one can come TO the house of the LORD and fall short of coming INTO the house of the LORD.
- You will note that the Psalmist was glad when he was invited to go INTO the house of the Lord. Some English renderings of into are; to the activity or liveliness of, to be included, interested in, involved with.
- With the above insight, I can give you the following principles that will make one glad to come INTO the house of the Lord. 1) There is activity and life coming forth as the Spirit of the Lord moves continually. 2) You know when you enter that you will be included in what takes place for you are part of the body of Christ. 3) You know when you enter; the Lord as well as others will express interest or concern for you. 4) You know when you enter, the Lord as well as others will get involved in your life to make sure you become all that God has purposed you to be. I don’t know about you, but that sounds like a place many are looking for in this hour.
- Where is this house of the LORD? 1 Cor 3:16 will answer that, “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?” With this insight, the psalmist would say, I was glad when you invited me INTO your life or being, for in doing so; I experienced the LORD IN YOU! This starts on an individual level and comes into the local assembly.
- This is a weighty saying, but if people aren’t glad when they come into your life or into your church, it just may be they are not seeing the Lord.
- I have seen and heard folks show great excitement when I talk about coming to their area. And in the light of this teaching, I understand that it is not so much about me coming as it is who is coming IN ME. And when I come, I minister the DOOR who is Jesus and they can’t wait to enter INTO the house of the Lord and get some bread and water!
- The truth in a nutshell is, if you plan on going INTO the house of the Lord, you are going to have to become a spiritual introvert. There are two sides to an introvert. 1) A natural introvert is one whose thoughts and feelings are turned inward on themselves. 2) A spiritual introvert on the other hand is one who directs their thoughts and feelings to the Lord that dwells WITHIN them.
- I can take this insight and bring it into the local assembly. 1) A natural introvert will come to church with their mind fixed solely upon themselves. As you look at them, you see the house of the Lord, but not the Lord. You try to enter INTO their house (life) and they shut you out. 2) A spiritual introvert however not only comes to church, but when they get there, they enter INTO the house of the Lord. Simply put, they know those in whom the Lord is appearing and they fix their eyes upon the Lord WITHIN that one and thereby enter INTO the house of the Lord.
- How can one tell if the Lord is appearing in their lives, families, jobs, churches, ministries, etc? I can give you one answer from Zech 8:20-23 where it reads, “Thus saith the LORD of hosts; It shall yet come to pass, that there shall come people, and the inhabitants of many cities: And the inhabitants of one city shall go to another, saying, Let us go speedily to pray before the LORD, and to seek the LORD of hosts: I will go also. Yea, many people and strong nations shall come to seek the LORD of hosts in Jerusalem, and to pray before the LORD. Thus saith the LORD of hosts; In those days it shall come to pass, that ten men shall take hold out of all languages of the nations, even shall take hold of the skirt of him that is a Jew, saying, We will go with you: for we have heard that God is with you.”
- I realize there will be some that will say that the people here are going to Jerusalem to seek the Lord. And some will say that the people are taking hold of the skirt of him that is a Jew.
- Paul clarifies Jerusalem for us in Gal 4:22-26 where it reads, “For it is written, that Abraham had two sons, the one by a bondmaid, the other by a freewoman. But he who was of the bondwoman was born after the flesh; but he of the freewoman was by promise. Which things are an allegory: for these are the two covenants; the one from the mount Sinai, which gendereth to bondage, which is Agar. For this Agar is mount Sinai in Arabia, and answereth to Jerusalem, which now is, and is in bondage with her children. But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all.”
- I trust you see the two different Jerusalem’s. One is natural and the other is spiritual. Somebody said, how could a city be a mother? Jesus can shed some light on this in Matt 12:47-50 where it reads, “Then one said unto him, Behold, thy mother and thy brethren stand without, desiring to speak with thee. But he answered and said unto him that told him, Who is my mother? And who are my brethren? And he stretched forth his hand toward his disciples, and said, Behold my mother and my brethren! For whosoever shall do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same is my brother, and sister, and mother.”
- If that isn’t enough, Jesus said in Matt 5:14, “Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.”
- Lets put this all together now. The church is the New Jerusalem and the mother that brings forth the light who is Jesus (Jn 8:12). Paul sheds light on this in Gal 1:15-16 where it reads, “But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb, and called me by his grace, To reveal his Son (LIGHT) IN ME, that I might preach him among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood.”
- How about this? Paul said in Gal 4:19, “My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed IN YOU.” Another translation reads, “Oh, my children, how you are hurting me! I am once again suffering for you the pains of a mother waiting for her child to be born– longing for the time when you will finally be filled with Christ.”
- I trust you see now that the many people and strong nations are going to come to YOU (that have been born again) seeking the Lord that dwells IN YOU and to pray before the Lord IN YOU.
- Somebody said, “what about the bible saying they were going to take hold of the skirt of the Jew?’ Well, as it was with Jerusalem being a natural and spiritual city, so it is with being a Jew. There is a natural Jew and a spiritual Jew. We can see this truth in Rom 2:28-29 where it reads, “For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.”
- I trust you see now that the JEW IS YOU, those that have been born again. Note that it said ten men out of all the languages of the nations, would take hold of the skirt of him that is a Jew, saying, We will go with you; for we have heard that God is with you. No doubt there are some historical applications here, but at the same time, there are spiritual applications here for the day in which we live. In our day, people are going to take hold of you because they will have heard that GOD IS IN YOU! 2 Cor 6:16 says, “And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? For ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.”
THE DOOR TO THE HOUSE OF THE LORD
John 10:9 I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.
- Jesus is the DOOR to the house of the Lord.
John 6:40-45 And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day. The Jews then murmured at him, because he said, I am the bread which came down from heaven. And they said, Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? how is it then that he saith, I came down from heaven? Jesus therefore answered and said unto them, Murmur not among yourselves. No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day. It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me.
- I want to point out that Jesus said, “I am the DOOR” in John 10:9. With that said, note here in Jn 6:40 that those that see the Son and believe on Him, may have everlasting life.
- The word ON in this verse literally means INTO. In fact, I looked at five other translations and they all read believe IN HIM. One English rendering of IN is to go from the outside to a point WITHIN.
- With the above insight, we can understand that it is possible to see the DOOR (Son) and yet not enter INTO the house of the Lord through it.
- Jesus said that those that see and believe into Him may have everlasting life. We see what this everlasting life is in John 14:6, “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father (Spirit), but by (through) me.”
- Once you see and believe into Jesus, you now MAY HAVE everlasting life. The words may have here are rendered in the Greek of holding something such as ability, condition or relation. The principle being, once you see and believe, you now hold in your hands the ability to enter through relationship into a certain condition or state of being. This condition being everlasting life, a realm wherein there is no death.
- Note the Jews murmured against Jesus in John 6:41 because He said, “I am the bread which came down from heaven.” They knew Him as the Son of Joseph. I could say it like this, on his mother’s side; he was Jesus the Son of Man. But, on His father’s side: He was Jesus the Son of God, the DOOR to HEAVEN.
- As we as born again believers walk in the footsteps of Jesus, we must understand that there will be those that will only know us as son of man.
- Note the words of Jesus in John 6:44, “No man can come to me, except the Father (Spirit) which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.”
- Note these Jews had come to Jesus in the natural as is evident in the scriptures. However, they had not come to where He really was. And, Jesus was letting them know that they could not come where He really was unless the Father drew them there.
- We can see where Jesus was in John 3:13 where it reads, “And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.”
- Note that Jesus was telling them as Son of man that He was in heaven right then. Let me break it down. The word is in Greek simply means, “I exist.” The word in simply denotes a fixed position in place, time or state of being.
- Somebody said, “How can Jesus be in heaven while on earth?” Well, lets look at the scriptures and answer that question. Jesus said these words in Matt 10:32, “Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven.” I will now ask you a question. Where did Jesus say His Father was? I trust you answered, “IN HEAVEN.”
- Now, listen to Jesus in John 14:10 where he says, “Believest thou not that I am in the Father (Spirit), and the Father (Spirit) in me? The words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father (Spirit) that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works.” I will now ask you another question. Where did Jesus say His Father was? I trust you answered, “IN HIM.”
- I realize we are getting deep here, but I am convinced that what I am sharing is really foundational truths. Now, if you look up heaven, you will see that it is simply the abode or HOME of God. God is spirit and therefore heaven is a spiritual place. 1 Pet 2:5 says, “Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house.” In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through (in) the Spirit (Eph 2:22).
- I want to stretch you a little now. Picture with me for a moment. A pregnant woman has a baby in the hospital (away from the fathers house). The doctor comes in after a couple of days and tells the Father, you can take it home. Does the father say you are going to have to wait for a while before you can come where I am? Or, is the Father anxious to get it home where he dwells right then? Well, that is the love of the natural father, which is no way near the love of our heavenly Father. So, do you honestly believe that our heavenly Father will birth us in the spirit as His children and not immediately take us to where He dwells where He can raise us? Selah.
- Somebody said, wow, that makes sense, but I still can’t grasp the reality of it. Well, for the sake of these, we will now give you the scriptures that will show you that it is possible to walk in the same place that Jesus walked while here in His earthly ministry.
- John 3:3 says, “Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” The word again here is a bad translation for it literally means to be born FROM ABOVE! Thayer’s Lexicon renders this word as “from a higher place; used of things which come from heaven or God.”
- Wow, can you hear it? We being born from above have been sent into this world just as Jesus was. And while here, we are to manifest the Kingdom of Heaven. We can see this truth in Luke 11:2 where it reads, “And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth.”
- I want to start out here by giving you a visual aid and then we will look deeper into this verse in Luke 11. Picture with me for a moment that company is coming over to your house, you run through the house and grab up everything lying around and throw it into a room and shut the door. Your company comes over and brags on how clean your house is. You are thinking, if they only could see what I see behind that door. Well, the truth is, you can go through that door and bring that mess from where it is to where they are and they can see it!
- If you can hear it, this is what Jesus is praying. Simply put, pray that the Kingdom of Heaven in which you have seen and experienced will come upon the earth.
- With that said, lets look deeper into Luke 11:2 where it reads, “And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth.”
- Jesus lets us see that the will of the Father is that the Kingdom of Heaven comes to earth. Many are trying to get to the Kingdom of Heaven while the Father wills to bring it to earth.
- Where is this Kingdom? We will find that answer in Luke 17:21 where it reads, “Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.” The word come in Luke 11:2 is used only in the present (right now) and imperfect (shows continuous action) tenses.
- The word come in Luke 17:21 means to come from one place (heaven) to another (earth). It means to appear or to find a place of influence. The truth is, the Kingdom of Heaven has been coming for years and is presently still coming. We can an example of the Kingdom of Heaven coming to earth in Luke 11:20 where it reads, “But if I with the finger of God cast out devils, no doubt the kingdom of God is come upon you.” Another translation reads, “But if I am casting out demons because of power from God, it proves that the Kingdom of God has arrived.”
- Getting back to walking in the same place that Jesus walked in His ministry. I will take you through the same pattern. First, lets read Matt 5:48, “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.” I will ask you a question. Where did Jesus say our Father was? I trust you answered, “IN HEAVEN.”
- Now, lets read Eph 4:4-6, “There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.” I will now ask you another question. Where does Paul say that our Father is? I trust you answered, “IN US.”
- If that isn’t enough to convince you. Let us look now at 2 Cor 13:5 where it reads, “Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?” I ask you a question. Where does this verse say that Jesus is? I trust you answered, “IN US.”
- Now, lets read Eph 1:19-23, “And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power, Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places, Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come: And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, Which is his body, the fullness of him that filleth all in all.”
- In many of your bibles you will note the word places in verse 20 is in italics. This alerts you to the fact that the translators added this word. It better reads, It better reads, “which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in HEAVEN!” I am sure you have no problem with Jesus being seated in HEAVEN.
- Now, lets look at Eph 2:4-6, “But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus.”
- I want to point out again that the word places in verse 6 is in italics letting us see that it has been added. It would better read, “And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in HEAVEN in Christ Jesus.”
- I trust you see now that there is no way that you can be in Jesus and not be in HEAVEN right now. I know that sounds foolish and to the natural man, it is, but to those who have eyes to see and ears to hear, it is very present reality.
- Hear the words of Jesus in John 14:19-20, “Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also. At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father (in heaven), and ye in me (in heaven), and I in you (in earth).”
- 1 Cor 6:17 says, “But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.” I could say it like this; he that is joined to the Lord is SPIRIT. God IS omnipresent which simply means present everywhere simultaneously. Simply being, He is as much present in earth as He is in heaven.
- I Jn 3:1 says, “Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.”
- Just as they didn’t know Jesus, they will not and cannot know whom you really are, where you really live and where you’re really from unless the spirit draws them to the Christ in you.
Gen 28:10-11 And Jacob went out from Beersheba, and went toward Haran. And he lighted upon a certain place, and tarried there all night, because the sun was set; and he took of the stones of that place, and put them for his pillows, and lay down in that place to sleep.
- Note that that Jacob went OUT from Beersheba, which is the place where Isaac’s servants FOUND WATER (Gen 26:32) and went TOWARDS Haran, which was a center of the moon God cult. The moon is visible only by reflection of the sunlight. Thus Haran speaks in principle of a place where there is no TRUE LIGHT.
- With this insight, we can say that Jacob went out from a place wherein there was water, which speaks metaphorically of spirit and life towards a place of deception.
- Note now that Jacob is enroute to this place of deception; he lighted upon a certain place. The word lighted here simply means to come upon by accident. An accident is simply an unexpected event, an unforeseen event or lack of intention.
- This certain place that Jacob lighted upon speaks in principle of a place of revelation, a place where God gives you a revelation of His house.
- Note however it was an accident on Jacobs’s part to come to this place. This lets us see three things.
- 1) He didn’t expect to receive a revelation from God in this place.
- 2) He didn’t foresee the Lord given him a revelation in this place.
- 3) He didn’t intend on getting a revelation from God in this place.
- What else does this place speak of? Well, note that the sun was set in this place where he was. The word set here is a verb and is rendered in Hebrew in one sense of moving from one place to another.
- This speaks in another sense of a place you come where it seems as though the SON has moved away from you. You hear the SON is lighting up others lives but you are in darkness.
- It would do you good to know that the SUN never moves. It is the earth that is moving and as the earth rotates or moves away from the SUN, we then enter into DARKNESS. The principle being, the SON will never move away from you, though it be day or night, He will be there to LIGHT your day. We can see this truth in John 8:12 where it reads, “I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.” I Jn 1:6 says, “If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth.” John 12:46 says, “I am come a light into the world, that whosoever believeth on (into) me should not abide (stay or remain in a certain state of being) in darkness.”
- I want you to note that Jacob tarried in this place. The word tarried in this verse means to stop, to stay permanently, to be obstinate which means to be stubborn, hardheaded, not flexible, unyielding. This word is also translated to abide continually and to murmur.
- I think it interesting to point out that one Hebrew rendering of murmur is to stop. The principle being, the moment you begin to murmur is the moment you stop in regards to following after the Lord.
- Now with all this insight, we can see a beautiful picture of the intervention of the Lord in the life of one who is headed for deception due to their stubbornness, murmuring and failure to yield to the Lord. And you must understand, this person doesn’t expect the Lord to intervene in their life. This person doesn’t foresee the Lord moving in their life. And, finally, this person doesn’t intend on the Lord moving in their life. You should praise the Lord right now for His grace and mercy.
- Note that because there was darkness in Jacobs’s life, he took a stone from that place and made him a pillow. I realize that it says that he took stones to make pillows but if you will look at verse 18, you will note that he took THE STONE he had made for his pillow and set it up for a pillar and poured oil on the top of it.
- This should make you shout! The stone speaks of Jesus who is the LIGHT (Jn 8:12)! The principle being, I don’t care how dark it gets in your life or what your circumstance may be, you can be assured if you would only look, that there is a STONE close by.
- We can see this truth in 1 Cor 10:1-4 where it reads, “Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea; And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea; And did all eat the same spiritual meat; And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.”
- I think it interesting to point out that the Rock followed them. The principle being; even when you get in front of God and attempt to do things your way, you can be assured that the Rock will still be within reach.
- Note that Jacob used the STONE for a pillow. A pillow is used for a place to REST your head. One English rendering of rest is peace. The mind is in the head. Isa 26:3 says, “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed (lean upon) on thee: because he trusteth in thee.” Jacob laid his head (mind of chaos and confusion) upon the Head (mind of Christ) and as a result entered into rest.
- Note it says he lay down IN that place to sleep. The word IN here is rendered in Hebrew in one sense of a condition of mind. With this insight we could look from another angle and say that he went to bed with his problems on his mind. Simply being, these have come to a place where the SON doesn’t seem to be moving in their life and they enter into a state of depression and end up in bed trying to sleep their problems away, tossing and turning all night long. Little do they know, they just happened to light on the place where things were going to change for the better in their lives.
Gen 28:12 And he dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven: and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it.
- The Lord has a way of bringing one to the end of themselves. You must note that though Jacob lighted upon this place, the Lord already had this place reserved for him. You should shout praise the Lord right now. Simply being, that dark and lonely place you lighted upon just may the very place you the Lord makes himself real in your life.
- Note that Jacob dreamed. The Lord speaks to His people through dreams as can be seen in Job 33:14-17 where it reads, “For God speaketh once, yea twice, yet man perceiveth it not. In a dream, in a vision of the night, when deep sleep falleth upon men, in slumberings upon the bed; Then he openeth the ears of men, and sealeth their instruction, That he may withdraw man from his purpose, and hide pride from man.”
- Now that Jacob has laid his head on the HEAD, he is a prime candidate to receive a revelation from the HEAD. Note that he sees a ladder setting upon the earth and the top of it reached to heaven.
- The word ladder here in Hebrew simply means a staircase. This is interesting when you look at DNA. DNA is a nucleic acid that carries the genetic information in the cell and is capable of self-replication and synthesis of RNA. DNA consists of two long chains of nucleotides twisted into a double helix and joined by hydrogen bonds between the complementary bases adenine and thymine or cytosine and guanine. The sequence of nucleotides determines individual hereditary characteristics.
- When you look at a picture of DNA, it looks just like a staircase. Titus 3:4-5 says, “But after that the kindness and love of God our Savior toward man appeared, Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost.”
- Regeneration is made up two parts; “pal’-in” which means anew and “genesis” which speaks of ones origin or a book of ones lineage. I think it interesting that scientist recently declared the DNA as the BOOK OF LIFE! Well, Paul said in 2 Corinthians 3:2 that we are epistles and known and read of all men. An epistle is a letter that is part of a book. Many epistles would make up ONE BOOK.
- Jesus is the Word (Jn 1:1, 14). Jesus is Life (Jn 14:6). If you can hear it, Jesus is the BOOK of LIFE. Rev 20:12 says, “And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.”
- Note that it says the book of life was opened and the dead were judged out of those things written in the books. Jesus makes it clearer in John 12:48 where he says, “He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day.” Jesus THE WORD is the BOOK of LIFE!
- Getting back to Jacob, this ladder he was seeing was Jesus who is the BOOK of LIFE and the DOOR to HEAVEN. Jesus interprets this passage in John 1:51 where he said to Nathanael, “And he saith unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Hereafter ye shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man.”
- Jacob had one awesome dream, he not only saw Jesus, but he also saw the Body of Christ. Jesus is the head in Heaven and we are the body standing on earth.
- Note that Jacob saw angels of God ascending and descending on this ladder. The word on is a prefixed preposition and is used of place (never motion). The truth being, I saw a place wherein it is possible to ascend to heaven and descend back to earth.
- The word angel here in Hebrew is rendered a messenger. Matt 11:10 says, “For this is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.” The word messenger here is also translated angel throughout the New Testament, thus John the Baptist was an angel sent from God as well as a member of the Body of Christ. If you can hear it, there is a place in Jesus where you can ascend to heaven and descend back to earth with a word from Heaven!
- I could say it another way in the light of John 10:9 where it reads, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.” How about, if any man enter in, he shall be saved and shall go up and down?
Gen 28:13-17 And, behold, the LORD stood above it, and said, I am the LORD God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac: the land whereon thou liest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed; And thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth, and thou shalt spread abroad to the west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south: and in thee and in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed. And, behold, I am with thee, and will keep thee in all places whither thou goest, and will bring thee again into this land; for I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of. And Jacob awaked out of his sleep, and he said, Surely the LORD is in this place; and I knew it not. And he was afraid, and said, How dreadful is this place! this is none other but the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.
- Note that when Jacob awaked out of his sleep, he said, surely the Lord is in this place and I knew it not. Have you ever had a dream and woke up discouraged because it was only a dream? Well, here is something to think about in the light of Jacob’s ordeal. Simply being, sometimes we fail to miss the thing we desire even though it is nigh unto us. In this case, it was the Lord. So, the Lord gives Jacob a dream to let him see that this that you have seen is not only a dream but a present reality to those that would dare to believe. John 6:40 bears this principle out where it reads, “And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.”
- Note that he said, the Lord is in THIS PLACE and I knew it not. What is this place? The place you lighted upon. The place where you couldn’t see the SON. The place where you were in darkness. The place where you were stubborn and hardheaded. Even so today, the SON is still in His place waiting to BRIGHTEN your days.
- Jacob said, this is none other than the house of God. Eph 2:19-22 says, “Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God; And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.”
- I trust you see and understand that Jacob saw you and I who are the House of God!
- Not only did he see the House of God: he saw the gate of heaven. The word gate here in Hebrew simply means DOOR. Jacob therefore not only saw the House of God, he saw the DOOR to the House, which is Jesus. And if you can hear it, we as the Body of Christ are not only the House of God, but we are also doors to heaven.
Gen 28:18-19 And Jacob rose up early in the morning, and took the stone that he had put for his pillows, and set it up for a pillar, and poured oil upon the top of it. And he called the name of that place Bethel: but the name of that city was called Luz at the first.
- Now that Jacob has received this powerful revelation, look what he does. He took the stone that he had learned to rest on and sets it UP for a pillar. One rendering of pillar is an idol. An idol is simply an object of worship. The principle being, he set Jesus up as Lord in his life and would now worship Him as HIS GOD!
- Next we see him pouring oil upon the top of the stone or upon the head. Oil speaks metaphorically of the spirit but also of life. The principle being, I am going to pour out all I am upon the Head of my life and from hence forth, I will rest IN HIM!
- In conclusion, Jacob names this place Bethel. Bethel simply means House of God. It would no longer be known as Luz. Luz simply speaks in principle of the place you happened to light on. The place where you couldn’t see the SON. The place where you were in darkness. The place where you were stubborn and hardheaded.
- As you sit in this place hearing this message, please consider that this just might be the place that the Lord had you to light upon in order that He might shine in your life.
I trust you have been blessed by this 3-part teaching. We have each one of these messages available to order on cassette for any size love offering. Your financial support enables us to send our tapes around the world.
PRESENT TRUTHS and PRINCIPLES CONCERNING HOUSE OF GOD, THE HOUSE OF THE LORD [Tony Nichols] 1