I pray that your week is going well. May the Lord continue to sustain you by His grace.

This past Sunday, we continued in our “Worship and Prayer” series, as we looked at how the presence of God empowers our corporate worship.

After the sin of worshiping a Golden Calf, God tells Israel in Exodus 33 that they can receive the Promised Land that is flowing with milk and honey, except for one thing: His own presence. They will receive the gifts but not the Giver. They will receive the benefits but not the Benefactor.

Is this how we approach Christianity? Is this how we see our faith? We desire what God can give us including all the riches of heaven, but we don’t desire God Himself. We use God rather than walk with Him.

After hearing this news, Israel is devastated. They mourn over their sin and God’s judgment. However, the Lord relents. He says that His presence and His favor will be with them.

What happened that the Lord would relent of His judgment? It’s Moses’ intercession. He as Israel’s mediator intercedes on their behalf by pleading on the basis of God’s glory and covenant.

We are no greater than the Israelites. We make idols of everything and anything. In the hymn Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing, Robert Robinson accurately writes, “Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it; Prone to leave the God I love.”

We deserve the same judgment as Israel. God’s holy presence should not dwell in the midst of us.

However, we know that we have the presence of God. He is with us. He will never leave us nor forsake us. Nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus.

How? It’s because of the intercession of another. It’s based upon our mediator, the Greater Moses, Jesus Christ. He is seated at the right hand of God, interceding on our behalf.

He does not just intercede for us on the basis of God’s glory and covenant. He intercedes for us on the fulfillment of God’s glory and covenant: His death and resurrection.

We can have the full presence of God, because Jesus received the full absence of God on the cross. We can be absolutely forgiven by God, because Jesus was absolutely forsaken on the cross.

Just like Israel and Moses, this leads us to corporate worship. It leads us to corporately seek His glory.

New Life, may we live in the fullness of the presence of God. May this presence, that is more deeply experienced and more visibly seen together, drive us to worship Him.

Continue to pray! Pray for our KM’s short term mission team right now in Cambodia! Pray for one another! Pray for our worship together this Lord’s Day. See you then.

In Christ,
Pastor Tim

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