I have been a Christian for over thirty years and in these years there is one thing that I have discovered to be peculiar and intriguing. This most peculiar thing that I have discovered is that not every believer, not every minister and not every church are carriers or full of God's presence. All of those mentioned should be but unfortunately that is not the case. On the other hand I have met believers, ministers and I have been to churches that were full of God's presence. When you encountered them you had an encounter with God and you knew it. There are many believers and ministers that I met that are larger than life characters and full of knowledge but very few have I met that carried that tangible presence of God. Please understand it is not because God is withholding his presence and I am not talking about the indwelling of the Spirit which every true born again believer has. I am talking about the tangible presence. God wants us to be carriers and hosts of his presence. This is the very purpose of the creation of Adam and for the rest of his generations.
God created man and planted him in Eden.
And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.
Adam did not have to go look for a place for himself once he was created. No, once created, God placed him in Eden. This word Eden is a loaded word that we will decipher in a later article but for now let me give you two basic definitions of Eden. They are delight or delightful place and Presence. Therefore when man was created he lived in a delightful place called the Presence of God. As the fish's natural habitat is water and birds fly in the air, man's natural habitat is God's presence. Just as a fish out of water dies and a bird locked in a cage suffocates and frustrates his potential, a man without the presence of God will be frustrated and death will set in. This is why you as a believer must live and bask in the presence of God.
First you need to understand that there are two kinds of the presence of God:
- The Universal or the General Presence
- The Tangible or Manifested Presence
The universal presence of God is the general presence of God linked to his Omnipresence, divinity and deity. Since God is God he has to be omnipresent, meaning he is present at all times and in all places. If God was not omnipresent then he would not be God, but he would be just like us - limited to one place in one time. Omnipresence means that as God is with me in America, he is with you wherever you are reading this article. You may be in France or in Beijing but he is there. If there was ever a man who understood the dual presence of God, it was King David. He reveals this dual presence in his writings in Psalms. First let's see David reveal the universal presence,
Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence? If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there. If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me.
The universal presence of God means he is in heaven, on earth and under the earth. He is everywhere! Now let's see David reveal the manifested tangible presence,
Hide thy face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities. Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me.
It is the universal presence that enables us to understand that we can have the tangible presence. The reality of the universal presence is the springboard for the tangible presence.
David had a dread of losing that tangible presence specifically after he had sinned with Bathsheba. This is a very important clue for you to secure God's presence - walk away from sin and stop tolerating sin in your life. Sin has a chain reaction. After David sinned with Bathsheba, he summoned her husband Uriah, a faithful warrior, to come home. David then proceeded to get Uriah drunk to send him home to sleep with his wife in order to cover up his sin, but Uriah being a man of principle would not go home as long as Israel was in battle. Then David devised a more wicked plan to have Uriah killed.
He gave Uriah a letter to take to Joab and the latter did not know he was carrying his own death sentence. The letter instructed Joab to put Uriah at the front of the hottest part of the battle and then pull back and leave him there to die! Can you see the chain links of sin? It started with lust - then proceeded to adultery- to deception- to drunkenness- to betrayal and finally to death. David knew his sins were grievous before God and this is why he repented. He did not want to lose that tangible presence in his life. He had lived and basked in it from his youth. It was that Presence that enabled him to kill the lion and the bear. It was that sweet presence of God that enabled him to slay Goliath of Gath. It was that tangible presence that manifested when he played the harp resulting in demon spirits leaving Saul. It was that very presence that took him from a nobody to becoming King over Israel. David understood that the presence of God was the securing of destiny.
Allow me to give you one simple definition of the tangible presence of God
The tangible presence of God is the manifestation of God in a place, on a location or on a person that brings about supernatural change and a heavenly atmosphere.
The universal presence does not provoke change or brings miracle. It is the tangible presence that provokes change and brings miracles. This is why you need to go for the tangible manifested presence. The universal, general presence is there for you to invoke that tangible presence. We will go in more details in future articles!