There are prayers we pray and songs we sing that do not make scriptural or spiritual sense. Have you prayed or heard someone pray like this before “Lord, as I go out today, let you presence go with me…”? Songs like “There is something that makes me come into your presence my helper…” and the type of prayer aforementioned are inconsistent with the status of a believer in Christ.
We ought to clearly describe what the presence of the Lord is. To do this, we must understand that the presence of the Lord is not a feeling nor a physical place. Under the Old Covenant, physical places like Temples, Tabernacles, altars built etc were symbolic of God’s presence. The people under this covenant were men of the physical senses. They needed to say something, feel something, see something or smell something before they knew God was with them. In fact Moses said at some point in the journey of the Israelites through the wilderness “…if thy presence GO not with me, carry us not up hence” (Ex. 33:15). The Psalmist said “…come BEFORE his presence with singing” (Ps. 100:2). The story was also told about Jonah how he FLED or departed from the presence of Lord (Jonah 1:3). The presence of the Lord was a place they sought after, went to and ran away from.
Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen. Matt. 28:20
The story changes in the New Covenant of fulfilled promises. The presence of the Lord is our arriving point at salvation. When we heard the gospel of Christ and believed same, we came into God’s presence. We were born into God’s presence by God’s presence (Jn. 3:3, 5-8). God’s Spirit in us is God’s presence in and with us! What these men of old longed to feel or see is now a reality within us. What they had as a shadow, we are and have the substance! (Heb. 10:1). What they went into tabernacles and temples to experience is what the believers in Christ now are! David and Ezekiel prophesied about God’s presence when they said “Cast me not away from THY PRESENCE, and take not the HOLY SPIRIT from me” (Ps. 51:11). This plea or request is granted in Christ. His Presence which is His Spirit in us will not be taken away from us neither will we be cast out of Him ( Jn. 10:28-29).“A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them” (Ezek. 36:26-27). This prophecy is also fulfilled in Christ! God has put within us a new heart and a new Spirit!
You are never alone, God’s Spirit dwells in you (Jn. 14:16-20). You are the temple of God, you carry Him everywhere you go (1 Cor. 3:16; 6:19). When we come together as believers to pray or to learn God’s Word, we don’t come into His presence or welcome His presence, we rather practice His presence by affirming with words or songs the reality of His presence in us. God’s presence is not in a physical building any longer, His presence is in us! Whether we feel like it or not, we are a habitation of God through His Spirit (Eph. 2:21-22). He said He will never leave you nor forsake you (Heb. 13:5).
Say these words out loud “ I was born into His presence with His presence. Now, I’m a carrier of His presence everywhere I go. God’s Spirit dwells in me. I’m never alone.”