Written by Elijah Fabule
God made man in a way that he craves for something superior to him to worship. Every man has this zeal to worship something whether an idol or infinitesimal being. We have seen from the book Genesis that the knowledge of God was passed down from one generation to another except for few who had direct contact with God; Abraham and Moses.
Fast forward to the time God chose the Israelites as a nation to prove Himself to humanity and through whom the Savior of humanity would come to the earth to save humanity from their sin and restore the man and God spiritual bond. God revealed himself to Moses as the man he would use to bring the Israelites out of Egypt. It should be noted that Moses was a man who shunned oppression, slavery and injustice, so it was not difficult for God to choose him as the best man to champion this course of freedom.
Having being led out of Egypt, the Israelis were given several laws through Moses, their leader, to keep their bond with God who shielded them out of Egypt. The laws given were over 613 according to the book of Leviticus and it was impossible for them to keep all the laws. God in his infinite mercy, allowed for different offerings to be given for their unfaithfulness in keeping all the laws.
On getting out of Egypt towards Canaan land God promised their forefather, Abraham, God made sure to give Moses details, from the least to the greatest on how to build a tabernacle where God’s presence would rest permanently. The tabernacle was a sacred place where God chose to meet His people, the Israelites, during the 40 years they wandered in the desert under Moses’ leadership. It was the place where the leaders and people came together to worship and offer sacrifices. The essence of the tabernacle was for God to be closer to his people, the Israelites.
God’s presence rested on the tabernacle and all the people gathered at the tabernacle to meet God and worship Him there. The tabernacle was a means to an end and not an end in itself. The actual plan of God was to relate with individual mankind personally. Hence he said; ” For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; ’’ I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people: And they shall not teach every man his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for all shall know me, from the least to the greatest.’’
The future God talked about making a new covenant with His people was established when Jesus died for mankind and offered himself as a propitiation for sins at the heavenly tabernacle. Prior this time, Jesus had a conversation with a particular woman of Samaria in John 4: 19 the woman saith unto him, Sir, I perceive that thou art a prophet. 20 Our fathers worshipped in this mountain; and ye say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship. 21 Jesus saith unto her, Woman believe me, the hour cometh, when ye shall neither in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father. 22 Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews. 23 But the hour cometh and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. 24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.
Jesus made a crucial statement in the above passage of the scripture in accordance with God’s will as regards dwelling in the spirit of mankind for easier fellowship. Jesus remained the door through which this plan would be achieved. That is, in his death and sacrifice. Those who must worship God must do it through the spirit and truth. The truth and Spirit here symbolizes Jesus Christ. In the original Greek translation of John 4:24, the Greek word for “and” is translated “that is”. When replaced with “that is”, we see that the word “spirit” is used to qualify the word “truth”. Hence, we have a better explanation for the verse; “God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and (that is) in truth.” Jesus Christ is the truth as stated by him in John 14:6 that “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”
The death of Jesus has opened the way for all to fellowship with God in the spirit and truth. Every Individual who believes in Jesus Christ’s sacrifice for sin has, in him, the spirit of God; hence, there is no need to be assembled at a particular place before he can fellowship with God as the case was during the period of the tabernacle in the old testament. By default, such man has met all the requirements as in the tabernacle of Moses for God to dwell in him permanently. He is a carrier of God’s presence and in this he should rejoice that his God is with him at all times irrespective of location for fellowship and intimacy. We are in the era of the new covenant established by the blood of Jesus Christ shed at the heavenly tabernacle once and for all for humanity. Howbeit, it’s a good thing when believers assembly at a place for fellowship. As the proverbs that says; ‘’Iron sharpens Iron”, each individual carries God’s presence in him and the synergy can also fast track their spiritual growth.