Weekly Teachings by Erik Momsen
Fear of His Presence
by Erik Momsen
Our Lord Jesus promised us that in this life we would have trouble. Much of that trouble is of our own making, but some are given great burdens by the world and the evil one. The Bible itself is a book of great trouble. The forced eviction of Adam and Eve from Eden and the murder of their one son by the other. All this happens by the fourth chapter of the Bible.
Job, the man of trouble, says;
"Man born of woman is of few days and full of trouble." (Job 14:1)
The origin of this trouble was the disobedience and sin of the man and woman as they listened to the evil one instead of their God, Creator and friend.
"Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden. But the LORD God called to the man, "Where are you?" He answered, "I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid." (Genesis 3:8-10)
Taken the sinless situation Adam and Eve lived in prior to chapter 3, I find it very believable that God made Himself physically present to them. Now the relationship that the man and woman had with God was destroyed. The late afternoon talks now turned to fear. They were now afraid of the presence of God. The life giving presence of God would now be replaced by fear, anger, trouble and all kinds of sin. They were out of relationship with God, each other and the world, as symbolized by their exclusion from the garden. Pandora’s box had been opened. Amazingly Genesis 3:15 already gives the promise of the final victory, "He will crush your (Satan’s) head".
THE ANSWER TO THE TROUBLE IS THE PRESENCE
There seem to be two types of trouble. Those of my own making and those that are not my fault. The answer is however the same.
"The LORD is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble." (Psalm 9:9)
This is one of so many passages that name God as the answer to trouble. Have you noticed that in your own heart there is a reluctance and even fear to go before Him? Many believers are especially afraid of His manifest presence.
Many years ago I heard a good old Pentecostal preacher use the passage;
"And it shall come to pass in that day, that his burden shall be taken away from off thy shoulder, and this yoke from off thy neck, and the yoke shall be destroyed because, of the anointing." (Isaiah 10:27)
The phrase "it is the anointing that breaks the yoke" has even haunted me. A holy haunting. The situation in this passage was the suffering brought upon Israel by the Assyrians. It was an outside trouble, admittedly brought about by their sin. Yet the answer to this very real political situation was the Anointing of God. It was the presence of His Spirit that set them free.
Another passage that has intrigued me is Ephesians 5:18
"Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit." (Ephesians 5:18)
Paul uses wine as an example of sin or addiction that leads to further sin and trouble. Moral decay in one area leads to failure in other areas.
We will fall under the influence of wine, drugs money, sex, fear OR under the influence of the Holy Spirit.
The antidote to the additive power of sin is the infilling of the Spirit. The Greek indicates that the filling of the Spirit is a continuous event empowering us for worship, service, testimony and freedom.
The Presence of God in our lives - the infilling of His Spirit - is the counter to the effect of The Fall in our lives. Jan Bernard Struik, a Vineyard pastor in Utrecht, tells of the effect of entering the presence of God in his book "Flying I Saw A Swan".
Jan, as an active Christian, would find a week a years to spend thinking, praying and seeking God’s direction. When he became a full time pastor he decided to make the first week of his working year a week just listening to God. The first time away from everything with only a few books and a bible - no food - he experienced the struggles of inner trouble and then the quieting of his heart in God’s presence. On the last night of his retreat he was surprised by his young son who had cycled to meet his father and bring him a fast breaker. A great afternoon was shared but that evening brought a violent asthma attack to the boy. Many miles from medical help both battled with the disease and fear. The boy started crying uncontrollably, took his fathers hand and placed it on his chest and asked him to pray. Instantly the boy started laughing through his tears. The asthma had lifted even before his father said a word. The next day at home Jan heard the boy crying in his room. He found the boy crying. "What’s happened? Are you sad" Jan asked. "No Papa, it is the Holy Spirit!" He was filled with the Spirit from the previous day.
Time in His presence breaks the effects of sin and disease. It is time.
Date Added: 2013-06-12