Part 2 of 2
“Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s House are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto my self; that where I am, there ye may be also.” John 14:1-3.
Jesus tried to make it clear to His disciples that He was on His way to suffering and the death of the cross, the tomb, and then arise, ascend unto heaven as part of His preparation for all those who believe on Him. He faithfully carried out the plan to have His people with Him. Praise the Lord!
In the mean time let us keep the feast, commemorating His death in preparation for His return, “with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.” I Cor. 5:7-8.
We read in Exodus 12:1-15, that the Israelite was to eat of that Passover lamb in haste being prepared for quick travel, with their “loins girded.” They were going to need supernatural strength on their way. The Lord has provided that we be strengthened with might by His Spirit in the inner man, and tells us to have our lions girt about with truth. Eph. 3:16; 6:14. We also may have the loins of our mind girt about with a living hope of Jesus return.
“Shoes on our feet” – we do well to have our feet shod with the “preparation of the Gospel of peace.” Our dear Lord has provided that we finish our course on the right road with the right attitude. For He will have guided our feet in the way of peace everlasting.
“Our staff in our hand” – we may also be able to say, “thy rod and thy staff they comfort me,” when we have used this walking stick, guide book and ruler and kept it handy. We will be glad that we held fast and held forth the Word of life.
A wonderful preparation took place in the fourth time it is recorded that the nation kept the Passover. In II Chron. 3:1 we read of the house of the Lord that Solomon began to build, for which David had prepared, but in king Hezekiah’s reign the temple had to be restored, and cleaned. We read that Hezekiah called the priests and Levites to sanctify themselves and the house of the Lord, and to carry the filthiness out of the holy place. He said that they had forsaken the Lord, and the habitation of the Lord.
The Lord mightily used Hezekiah to stir those priests and Levites to prepare themselves and the temple for the service and worship of the Lord. They cleansed the altar, the table of shewbread, prepared and sanctified the vessels. The king called the congregation together to consecrate themselves, and come near and bring sacrifices and thank offerings. The response was so great and sudden that the priests that had prepared themselves were over whelmed for this renewal and the Levites had to help them prepare the offerings.
We read in II Chron. 29:36 that Hezekiah rejoiced, “that God had prepared the people.” But then we read in II Chron. 30:17-21, that, “there were many in the congregation that were not sanctified: therefore the Levites had the charge of killing the passovers for every one that was not clean, to sanctity them unto the Lord. For a multitude of the people…had not cleansed themselves, yet they did eat the Passover otherwise than it was written. But Hezekiah prayed for them, saying, The good Lord pardon every one that prepareth his heart to seek God, the Lord God of his fathers, though he be not cleansed according to the purification of the sanctuary. And the Lord harkened to Hezekiah, and healed the people. And the children of Israel that were present at Jerusalem kept the feast of unleavened bread seven days with great gladness: and the Levites and the priests praised the Lord day by day, singing with loud instruments unto the Lord.” PRAISE THE LORD!!!
We often marvel to find such manifestations of our Father’s grace, His loving-kindness even under the dispensation of the Law. As we are receptive today to the Word, and responsive to the working of the Holy Spirit in our hearts, the will of God is being performed in our lives, that is purification, and preparation for a glorious presentation. Read II Cor. 11:1-2; Eph. 5:25-27; Col. 1:27-29; Jude 24; Rev. 19:6-8; 21:1-2; AND REJOICE.
When we read of the vessels being prepared and sanctified II Chron. 29:19, I am reminded of the preparation spoken of by our Apostle Paul in II Cor. 6 & 7. In II Cor. 6:1-3 Paul beseeches us to appropriate God’s grace for our day of salvation, and not be a hindrance to its ministry. In verses 14-17, he speaks of an important separation, in relation to the yoke, fellowship, communion, concord, and agreement for the express enjoyment of our God’s Fatherhood, V. 18. He then opens Chapter 7 with these important words: “Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, Let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.”
Paul teaches of some essential preparation for spiritual service when He wrote: “But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour, and some to dishonour. If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and meet for the master’s use, and prepared unto every good work.” II Tim. 2:20-21.
The needed purging takes place as we are receptive by faith to the washing of the water of the Word, and responsive to the Holy Spirit as He brings the truth close and searching to our hearts. “Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour? What if God, willing to shew his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction: And that he might make known the riches of his glory on vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory…”. Rom. 9:21-22.
Oh, thank God that He has dealt with us in mercy, being so long suffering with us. We are blessed that He would go to such length to make us vessels unto His eternal honour and glory. Purged, purified, and prepared unto glory, we will be adorned to grace the throne of glory. I say again, the value of the vessel may be determined by what it contains or for which it is used. We have the Christ life treasure in earthen vessels that the excellency of the power may be of God and not of us. Alleluia! It is Christ in us the hope of glory.