July 29 - God's Temple in Heaven Opened

Sunday, July 29, 2012

July 29 - God's Temple in Heaven Opened
Revelation 11:15-19 (the ark of the covenant – Jeremiah 3:16)

Jeremiah 3:16 says, “In those days, when your numbers have increased greatly in the land’ declared the Lord,’ It will never enter their minds or be remembered; it will not be missed, nor will another one be made.’”

By the time those words were written, the Ark was gone. No one really knew where it had gone.  There are some hints in other extra Biblical literature: "...took all the holy vessels of the Lord, both great and small, and the ark of God, and the king's treasures, and carried them away into Babylon." (1 Esdras 1:54)

However, there continues to be debate as to whether it was hidden away so the Babylonians couldn’t take it or whether it actually was taken by Nebuchadnezzar and never returned.

Revelation 11:15-19 tells a different story.  The seventh angel sounded his trumpet, loud voices began to cry out in praise, the elders fell on their faces and worshiped God.  Then, in verse 19 we read: “Then God’s temple in heaven was opened, and within his temple was seen the ark of his covenant. And there came flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder, an earthquake and a great hailstorm.”

This marks the beginning of an incredible vision in Revelation 12 which tells the story of the Messiah’s arrival on earth from the long view of heaven and then the battle between the angels and the dragon.  That’s a story for another time.

The ark of the covenant is the container that holds the covenant words between God and man.  When humanity … when Israel could no longer hold up their side of the covenant and God had to send his Messiah, those words were preserved – not on earth, but in heaven where the covenant still remains in place.  God will never forget his promises even when we do.  That covenant gave us Jesus.  He is so much more important to the salvation of humanity than anything else.  It is he who fulfills the Old Covenant and who offers the promise of the New Covenant.