Monday, January 13, 2014

The Mercy Seat of Grace

Then put in the ark the testimony, which
I give you. Make an atonement cover of
pure gold…
                  Exodus 25:16-17 NIV 

     God’s directions to Moses regarding the building of the Tent of Meeting, the Tabernacle, included a chest made of acacia wood and overlaid inside and out with pure gold. It would be so holy the instructions for building included permanent rings into which the priests could slip gold-covered acacia wood poles which would allow them to carry the Ark of the Covenant without touching the Ark.

     The instructions included the most important part of the design—the atonement cover. The Ark was to be placed behind the tabernacle curtains where only the high priest could enter and once a year meet with God as the priest sprinkled the blood sacrifice that would atone for the sins of the Israelites.

     God’s grace delivered His law for the protection of His people. God’s grace also provided a plan for redemption in the face of disobedience.

     Each time the Israelites moved from place to place, the Tabernacle of God was disassembled. Only the priests could carry the Ark of the Covenant, and touching the Ark itself meant instant death. In this way, the Israelites were assured that God was with them as they wandered through the desert.

     Today’s Jews no longer have the Ark of the Covenant, and as archaeologists go in search of the “lost” Ark, documentaries are made hoping to be on site if the discovery of the ages is made.

     But God no longer tabernacles with man through an intermediary—a high priest. We no longer sprinkle the blood of goats and rams in order to seek forgiveness for sin. We no longer have to wait for the presence of God over the mercy seat of the Ark of the Covenant. Jesus came!

     Born of a virgin, Christ—the Anointed One, with sandaled feet on dusty roads, walked and talked with men. After He was crucified and laid in a borrowed tomb, He was resurrected the living, breathing, holy mercy seat of grace. No longer do we need a human intermediary in order to meet with God. Upon acceptance of Christ as Savior and Lord, we become the Tabernacle as the Holy Spirit of God enters into our hearts. (1 Corinthians 3:16)

     I don’t know about you, but I am grateful for immediate access to God’s mercy seat of grace. As Anne Graham Lotz simply but profoundly states, “Just Give Me Jesus!”

© Joyce Powell

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