By J.W. Arnold
I’d like to direct your attention to a couple of scriptures; Exodus 25: 8 & 22, “And let them make me a sanctuary; that I may dwell among them. And there I will meet with thee and commune with thee…” and the whole thing ends in Revelations 21 where you will see exactly who, or what, becomes the eternal house of God; very interesting lesson.
1 Kings 8:27, Solomon builds the Lord a house and says; yeah, I have built thee a house. Will God indeed dwell in a house seeing that the heavens and the heaven of the heavens cannot contain Him…? Okay? I’m looking at my notes and Jesus mentioned three times in His ministry, “My Fathers house,” and in all those three times he never referred to Heaven. He always referred to the earthly temple; either Herod’s temple that was there erected at that time, or His own body. When He said, “Destroy this temple and I’ll raise it up again in three days…,” you remember me talking in John 14, He said, “In my fathers house are many mansions and I go to prepare a place for you, and if I go and prepare a place for you I’ll doubtless come again and receive you unto myself that where I am there you may be also.” Contrary to what has been taught for many, many years, the many mansions are not cubicles, or big ranch plateaus out somewhere in outer space in New Jerusalem. It literally means abodes, rooms, and dwelling places.
We ask the questions, “Who is God making the dwelling place for?” “For you, or for Himself? The scriptures prove the answer — for Himself. So when He said, “I go to prepare a place for you”, you have to understand that many times in the scriptures there is a dual meaning with a dual fulfillment. You can have an actual physical fulfillment and a total spiritual fulfillment. You can have a present-day fulfillment and a future fulfillment And when the Lord says that I go to prepare a place for you, it’s two-fold: Calvary was to prepare the initial place, so that you and I could become a dwelling place for God; the New Jerusalem was the final place. There are two stages.
I’m not preaching false doctrine. I’m telling the truth. So lets go to Geneses 8: Verse 4, “And the Ark rested in the seventh month, on the seventeenth day of the month, upon the mountains of Ar-a-rat. The waters decreased continuously until the tenth month: in the tenth month and on the first day of the month, were the tops of the mountains seen. And it came to pass at the end of forty days, that Noah opened the window of the ark which he had made: and he sent forth the raven, which went forth to and fro, until the waters were dried up from off the earth.”
Now I want you to notice that scripture. The raven went to and fro upon the Earth. He never came back to the ark, because he’s a dirty bird, and he’s willing to live on dead stuff. There was a lot of dead stuff floating in the seas. He never returned to the ark. It said he went to and fro until the waters dried up. Now watch; “Also he sent forth a dove from him, to see if the waters were abated from off the face of the ground…” he was way up on top of a mountain and couldn’t see, because there was cloud cover; “The dove found no rest for the sole of her foot, and she returned unto him into the ark, for the waters were on the face of the whole earth: then he put forth his hand, and took her, and pulled her in unto him into the ark. He stayed yet another seven days; and again he sent forth the dove out of the ark. And the dove came in to him in the evening; and lo, in her mouth was an olive leaf plucked off; so Noah knew that the waters were abated from off of the earth.” Why? It was resurrection. It was new life. Something had happened. Now watch. “He stayed yet another seven days; and sent forth the dove which returned not again unto him anymore.”
Now, while the first lesson of our study was that God is desiring a house for Himself and that He is building Himself…I have the funniest kind of feeling. Do you believe me? If I caused you some strange theological vibes, have you grasped the concept that God wants to deliver your carcass? Christianity is God possession. Demonology is demon possession. Humanism is human possession. God, ever since the beginning of time, has wanted a fellowship and being with His people. That’s what the whole story of Genesis 2 and 3 are about; that God would come in the cool of the evening and visit with His creation. He never wanted there to be a great distance or chasm between Him and His creation.
Just like you, what is the joy and the fun of God blessing you in the marriage union, to give you offspring and children, and then they never live with you and never talk with you, or communicate with you? It’s just like you’re an animal…and…just produce; and throw them out Could I have a witness from a mother in the house? Apparently there aren’t any grunting fathers. You enjoy your offspring. That’s what makes holidays wonderful. That’s what makes special occasions grand. When your children… maybe they’ve gone out on their own now and have children —you enjoy your grandchildren and your kin-folk. The ecstasy wasn’t just in having the child, or raising the child; it’s enjoying the child, then having them come visit again.
Now watch; God has desired for a long time to have a house. He told Moses; …now I want you to have them make Me a sanctuary that I may dwell among them. They may have access to Me and I can have access to them. I can communicate with them… And He even gave them this little box and all these dimensions and these beating wings of the Cherubim’s over the mercy seat …for there will I meet with you and there will I commune with you.
Notice; Moses didn’t come up with the idea: “…I got to come up with a place where God can talk to you.” No. God came up with the idea: “…Now you make me this little cubicle and I’ll commune with you from there….” Now, that one verse that I didn’t read to you from Exodus 25 was 25:9, …and make sure you build it according to the pattern that I showed you…now I want to be among you, but I’m going to be among you right.
Our Bodies—Filled With The Spirit—Are God’s Temple
Now here’s the other side of my first lesson: From the beginning of time man has always desired and hungered to build a house for whoever and whatever he worshipped. Every religion builds its shrine, its temple, its building, its edifice, to magnify his god to make it become a magnetic place that draws them together in communion, so that they can bless their god and sacrifice unto their god and meet their god. Yes, yes, yes. The purpose of this facility is so that a lot of little temples can come together and form one big temple. This building is not the temple of God. We are the temple of God. ‘That’s the truth.
Folks, you don’t have to be embarrassed when some nincompoops that have brains made out of oatmeal try to fuss and cuss with you and try to tell you that holiness is Old Testament bondage. Just pray for them, because they’re brain-dead, and maybe God will fix their brain before they die and go to Hell. Holiness is not a bondage issue. Holiness is a God issue. God wants us to be Holy like Himself and the only way you and I can ever learn God, is to learn God. And you can’t just learn God from the letter. You got to learn God from interaction with God, because the Sprit gives life and the letter kills.
I don’t know of anybody that is in the house that has ever married one of those mail-order brides, but that’s not for me. I ain’t sending off for some mail-order bride. You know…a description…and how much money do you have…and I’ll meet you in Oregon. I’m glad I fell in love with Patti, that’s the way I like it.
God has desired to have a house, but man has desired to build Him a temple. Watch this; in Genesis 28, when Jacob is running away after he stole the birthright and he falls asleep on that rock and the heavens are open and the ladder’s up and down and the angels are moving up and down and God Almighty is at the top; and then God begins to talk to him and says, “I’m going to bless you and I’m going to be with you.” Isn’t it funny how what we label as absolutely horrendous sins that will disqualify you out of your life it doesn’t seem to affect God. This guy’s a charlatan and a cheat, couldn’t tell the truth sitting on a Bible looking at Jesus, and God turns around and didn’t even bring up his past and Jacob has this dream and he says; Verse 13. “Behold the Lord stood above it and said I’m the Lord God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac: the land whereon thou liest, to thee will I give it and to thy seed…” …oh, you liar and cheater, heel grabber, sub- planter deceiver…? No, He didn’t bring up his past, because God’s always talking about a better future and a better tomorrow.
I’m not saying we have a license to live ungodly, because there’re consequences for everything that we do. The law of sowing and reaping lives on. Now watch; “…And thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth, and thou shalt spread abroad to the west and to the east and to the north and to the south….” Now this guy’s running away for his life and God meets him in a dream and gives him a promise of future. He’s afraid his brother’s going to kill him, and God shows up and says that; …he couldn’t kill you if he wanted to, because I’m with you. Now that doesn’t mean God was a partner in his lying and cheating and deceiving, but God had assigned to him a destiny, and nothing was going to stop him.
Have you ever thought that God has assigned to the church a destiny? “…And the gates of Hell cannot prevail against it” Now you may choose to walk away from the church, but God ain’t walking away from the church. He’s got a covenant with the church. Bear with me; “…And in thee and in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed.” He said in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed. What do you mean, thy seed? If you read in Galatians and in Romans, Paul writes and says, “…thy seed which is Christ.” Not of seeds— many, but of seeds — singular. “…And thy seed, which is Christ” So He’s giving the promise futuristic from Abraham, to Isaac, to Jacob, to the twelve tribes of Israel down through time, until it finally comes out of that little Jewish girl and BOOM, here’s the seed.
“And in thy seed shall all of the families of the Earth be blessed.” He’s saying this to a guy who just got finished cheating and lying; and the Bible says all liars go to Hell! Why? Because you may not be a liar if you said a lie. Well, we’ll let that theological dog lay down a while.
“…And behold, I am with thee.”
“What? …I’m running away from my brother, because I’m a cheat and a liar and I stole his birthright.”
It was like God was saying, “Hey stupid, I don’t need your lying to get my job done. I already had it in my calendar that I was going to bless you. Before Jacob and Esau were born, I didn’t like Esau. I’m with thee and will keep thee in all places, whether thou goest and will bring thee again into this land for I will not leave thee until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of.”
Now God promised him a future when he was afraid of dying in his present Now watch; I have to skip down, because I have a long way to go. …And Jacob wakes up and makes a vow and says, “Now if God will be with me.’ Now isn’t that insulting? When God is sitting there saying; Now didn’t I just tell you I was going to be with you? What do you mean, IF I will…? Now you might as well smile and look at each other. Come on, smile and say, “You know I do the same thing some times.” “I get a word from God, or someone prophesies, or I get a feeling, or a vision, or a scripture, and then I say, ‘Well, now if’….” Aren’t you glad that sometimes God disregards our ifs?
God just finished talking to him, He said; I’ll be with you and I’ll bless you and all the families of the earth will be blessed of your seed and I’m going to let you possess this land and I’m going to be with you until you get that…. And he wakes up and says, “Now if the Lord will be with me….” You know you got trouble if you have God and you can’t trust Him. “…If God will be with me and keep me in this way that I go and give me bread to eat and raiment to put on…” Now he’s getting bold. God said He’d keep him in all the ways that he goes and bless him and now he gets specific and says, “Now I’d like to have raiment and food…so I come again to my fathers’ house in peace, then the Lord shall be my god…” and here it is; “and this stone which I have set up for a pillar shall be God’s house.” There’s always been a desire in mankind to build God a house, a shrine, a temple.
Now watch carefully; 2 Samuel 7:1, “And it came to pass when the king sat in his house and the Lord had given him rest round about from all of his enemies; That the king said unto Nathan the prophet, See now, I dwell in a house of cedar, but the ark of God dwelleth within curtains.” Now Verses 5&6, “Go and tell my servant David, Thus saith the Lord, shalt thou build me an house for me to dwell in? Whereas I have not dwelt in any house since the time that I brought up the children of Israel out of Egypt, even to this day, but have walked in a tent and in a tabernacle.” 12 & 13, “And when thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, and I will establish his kingdom….” Watch; “…He shall build an house for my name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever.”
So it ain’t that God don’t want a house, and it’s not that people don’t want to build Him one. What we need to understand is that God’s got timing for things. David says. “I’m going to build you a house,” and God says, “No, you can’t build me a house, I’m going to let Solomon build me a house.” I’ve got no problem with a house, but you got to understand something; God’s desire to build a house of living, lively stones, could never be realized until the problem of human sin and guilt was dealt with.
In Ephesians 2: 20-22, “And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief cornerstone. In whom all the building ” you’re the building, “…Fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.” That’s what God wants for a house: Human beings that are builded together for a habitation of God through the Spirit. That’s why, if you meet any of your friends, or relatives that tell you they don’t believe in the Holy Ghost, or the Spirit of God dwelling in you, they just don’t understand their Bible, because it’s God’s desire to have a house of human flesh that His Spirit can live in that creates for Him a temple.
So the incarnation was required, because redemption would need bleeding. God doesn’t have blood, because he’s Spirit, so he makes himself a body — overshadows Mary; she conceives and produces a body. Hebrews 10 says, “A body that thou hast prepared me”, so that the body could bleed and the blood could redeem.
So the incarnation was required, which would then give birth to the cross. This was accomplished in Romans 8:32, 2 Corinthians 5:19-21, and 1 Peter 3: 18, “Whereby the just died for the unjust and the godly died for the ungodly…” watch; “…that he might bring us to God.” So the ministry of Jesus was one of reconciliation and restoration and redemption and regeneration. You got to hear me! What is the purpose of it all? It’s not to go, “Whoopee”, or say, “Ohhh…get to go live somewhere tax-free.” No! The purpose of it all is so that God can have Himself a temple. a house. And in His house, the Bible says, “They that dwell in thy house shall continuously be praising thee.” Now, have I made sense yet? “To wit God was in Christ reconciling the world unto himself that imputing unto their trespasses taking them out of the way nailed to the cross. For God made Him to be sin who knew no sin that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.” Now it’s going to get a little hairy here, so stay with me for just a moment.
Noah & Ark—A Type Of New Testament Salvation
Now we’re going to Genesis. The flood was God’s judgment upon sir Okay? The flood was God’s judgment on sin. The Bible says that God saw the imagination and the wickedness of man’s heart was evil continually, and He repented Him that He ever made man, He was grieved in His heart, He was sorry, because He couldn’t communicate with them, because they didn want anything to do with Him. So He found Noah, and Noah was a man of righteousness and he feared God.
Now isn’t that amazing? What an indictment to our generation. You say “Well, I can’t serve God, because of the society I’m living in.” Well you’re going to have to face Noah someday. Noah found grace in the eyes of God and God gave him a plan of how to build this boat—He saved the human. race. Now God’s flood was actually the first step of God’s quest for dwelling place. I’ll prove it All the earth died, vegetation, all plant life, all animal life, and human life; everything was buried underneath a watery grave. Okay. Got it? The only things that were spared were those that were in the ark. That’s a picture. The ark is a picture of Jesus Christ. The only things that are going to be spared are those who are inside the ark.
Now watch; everything was buried, because once you kill something you bury it And all the wickedness was washed away. Now watch; and into a fresh, washed, baptized-by-death situation—God sends a dove…looking for a place to rest You notice that the Holy Ghost didn’t fall until after Calvary, because sin had to be dealt with. And when the price was paid, and the penalty received and endured, and evil was purged by the blood of Jesus—then the Spirit was free to find a dwelling place. Now the only other time you see this dove flitting around is when His cousin John baptizes Him in the Jordan, and John says, “I didn’t know who he was, but the Spirit that sent me bade me and said, whoever you see the Spirit descending upon and abiding, he it is that baptizes with the Holy Ghost.” And John saw the heavens open and the Spirit descending like unto a dove, sitting upon Jesus. And the heavens opened up and said this is my beloved son in whom I am well pleased. Isn’t it interesting that when the dove literally sets on a human being there will be a voice from the Heaven?
I’m all against these people that get the Holy Ghost quietly. Impossible! If the real Holy Ghost falls on you the heavens will testify. That’s why when they got the Holy Ghost on Pentecost they spoke in tongues supernaturally as the Spirit gives utterance. Now, are you ready? Watch this: The dove made three trips. Three trips! The dove, according to Matthew 3:16, is the type of the Spirit of God. Now watch; in Genesis 8:8-9, Noah sent the dove out, but the dove found no rest for the sole of her feet. In other words, she could find no place where she could abide. The dove, a type of the Spirit, won’t stay where there’s trash. It might touch it, but it won’t abide. It is a picture. This first trip that the dove makes, is a picture of the Spirit’s activities all through the Old Testament and the old covenant, because the Spirit of God moves. The Spirit of God descended and touched and activated, but the Spirit of God never abode. It landed, operated, moved, touched, anointed — and withdrew.
Why? Cleansing hadn’t taken place. The sin issue was never settled until the Lamb came.
Noah built Him a tabernacle: Exodus 40.
David built Him a tent, or David’s tabernacle: Psalm 132: 13-16.
Out of Zion the perfection of beauty; Psalm 50; God has shined.
Solomon built Him a temple, 1 Kings. But the Spirit didn’t stay.
And after sin got finished with its stupid work that it does with human beings…if you read the prophet Ezekiel; finally the Spirit of God left the Holy place and came across the courtyard and went out the gate, and the last time Ezekiel saw the Spirit of God, it was moving towards the hills. It had crossed the threshold and left. It wasn’t seen again until they baptized Jesus…as if to say, “I’m back.” “This is my house!” “I dwell in a clean temple.”
John doesn’t want to baptize, because he ain’t got no sin, but he’s going to baptize for righteousness-sake, anyway. “…Tell you what I’ll do, If you’ll repent and you’ll die out for your sins and get water baptized in His name, the same Spirit that I put on the man Jesus I’ll let it land on you and live in you, I’ll let you become my house….”
Now this is interesting: keep looking at Chapter 8 of Genesis. Remember, in Verse 9 the dove found no rest, so Noah took it back in the boat and waits another seven days…sends the dove out again and this is interesting: the dove went out on the first trip and we don’t really know how long she’s staying out there. But on the second trip we know exactly how long she went out. Noah sent her out and in that evening she came back. Now watch; this is significant It’s telling us that the second trip of the dove was brief, but effective. Let me try it again. The first trip of the dove is symbolic of God moving. Solomon’s temple, David’s tabernacle, Moses’ tent-dwelling visiting those places — but never staying. Visiting the cloud up and down, moving, visiting, and visiting…sin always driving Him out of His place…sin always violating His covenant with His people… always leaving, always leaving, always leaving…forcing God out of His throne room.
Now the second time the dove goes out, she goes out in the morning and comes back in the evening. Short trip, but she accomplished something. She has in her mouth the evidence of reconciliation. She has this little olive twig in her mouth indicating judgment is over. New life is starting.
What is the second trip of the dove indicative of? Glad you asked! It is the picture of Jesus, who was God’s house, building, and temple, who accomplished reconciliation through Calvary. I’ll prove it to you. Hebrews 9:24, “For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us.” And Hebrews 12:24, “And Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel.” Jesus’ short, little ministry of three to three and a half years, accomplished total reconciliation between God and man.
Jesus, who was God’s temple; who the writer says was the fullness of the Godhead bodily, who by his own statement said in John 16:28, “I am come from the Father and I return unto the Father.” Like the dove, He returns with the evidence of restoration and atonement. The Bible says His blood made atonement for us. Now watch; but before returning to Heaven, He made a promise that He would come back in Spirit form. I’ll show it to you; John 14:16, watch this; “And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you forever.” Now that’s very deceptive to people whose brains don’t work, “…I’ll give you another comforter.” I’ve read many commentaries that say, “another comforter — that’s where you get the Trinity.” No, no, no, no. The Greek word is, “another of the same kind.” Not another person; another of the same kind. “…I’ll give you another comforter and he may abide with you forever…” here it is; “…even the spirit of truth whom the world cannot receive because it seeth him not neither knoweth him, but you know him whom dwelleth with you…” and here it is; “…and shall be in you.”
Now wait a minute! “…I will not leave you comfortless. I will come to you.” When did Jesus come to his people? Pentecost!! You say, “Oh, He came in the upper room and came after the resurrection.” No! He’s talking about Spirit! The Spirit of Truth…”I will come to you.” When did the Spirit of Truth come? On the day of Pentecost…”For it is Christ in you the hope of glory.” All Jesus did was change form. Bear with me. “…That he may abide with you forever.” The third trip of the dove…are you ready? Verse 12, “And he stayed yet another seven days and sent forth the dove which returned not again unto him anymore.” Don’t you get the picture? Temporary visitation; covenants; David’s tabernacle; Moses’ tabernacle; and Solomon’s temple: Ezekiel said: “Bye-bye.” Next one? …Dove comes back with reconciliation. Picture — Jesus’ ministry, a ministry of reconciliation. But the third one…the dove finds a permanent dwelling for Himself.
God doesn’t give you the Holy Ghost to take it back. God gives you the Holy Ghost to abide with you forever. Now why did the dove find a place of permanent dwelling? Because the Earth had been judged, the Earth had been purged, and the Earth had been cleansed. So now Jesus finds a permanent dwelling in the body of redeemed people. According to Ephesians 2, which I read to you, human temples now make the habitation of God’s Spirit. So God’s quest for a house has been answered in his own church.
Be Careful How You Treat The House Of God
1 Corinthians 3…you might as well get as much Word in you as you can, because when the devil attacks you, that’s where he’s going to challenge you. Oh yeah! Some of you ain’t got no Word and ain’t got no fight. I’m not being unkind, I’m just saying the more Word you have, then the better defense you have. The Word is the sword of the Spirit. Look at this; in 1 Corinthians 3:9, “For we are laborers together with God: ye are Gods husbandry, ye are Gods building.” You know who he wrote that to? I don’t want to be rude, or rated R, or X, or be sensual, or XXX, or obscene; he wrote it to people who were having sexual orgies with their own family members; who were getting drunk often at the Lord’s supper. The most vile and corrupt sensual church that Paul ever had anything to do with was the Corinthian church, and that church had more gifts operating than any other church. So, gifts don’t prove spirituality. And yet God said; …yep, you’re my building, I’m living in that house, your treating me like it’s a run down tenement, but I’m in the house…. Ooops!
Let’s go again. Verse 16, “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you. If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy. For the temple of God is Holy which temple ye are.” 1 Corinthians 6:19, “What know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you which you have of God and you are not your own? You are bought with a price…” what was the price? Calvary’s blood. “…Therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit which are Gods.” 1 Peter 2:5, “Ye also as lively stones are built up a spiritual house a Holy priesthood to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.” That’s why we need the Holy Ghost, so that when we offer up spiritual sacrifices, they are filtered and made acceptable by the very Spirit of Jesus that’s inside of us… that God can accept it.
Now here’s an interesting question; why does God need a house? In 2 Corinthians 6, and 2 Chronicles 2:5&6, God inhabits all eternity and God fills all time and space. According to Jeremiah 23 and 24 and Isaiah 66:1, Acts 17:24-25, 1 Kings 8:10-14; all of these scriptures verify the fact that God is omnipresent. So, then, why does God need a house? Moses, who saw God as creator and indweller of the entire universe, who ruled all time and space, yet he obeyed God and built him a tabernacle. So the idea wasn’t man’s, it was God’s.
David, who was the magnifier and the sweet Psalmist of Israel, knew God and that He filled all time and space and that He dwelled everywhere equally at the same time, yet, he builds God a house and he says in Psalms 132 that he will not sleep until he finds a place for the God of Jacob.
Solomon, who says the heaven and the heaven of heaven cannot contain thee would you indeed dwell in a house…yet God had told him to build Me a house. Why does God need a house? There’s no conflict in believing that God is universally present, yet He desires, or requires, a special place of dwelling for the out-working of His purpose and plan, which is redemption and revelation.
Consider a landowner that has a large estate; stables and buildings and workshops and cottages, and, yet, all the things that he owns testifies to the existence and ownership of the owner — sort of like creation does. Yet, actually, the owner of the mansion…the owner of the plantation, only dwells and lives in one special place:
“That’s the master’s house over there.” “That’s the owner’s house right there.”
“Well, what are these?”
“Oh, they’re all his houses and his cottages and his tractors and his barns and stuff, and he kind of dwells here because it’s all his, but he really lives here.” So much for people who try to find God in nature!!
“Well, he dwells here. Not this building, but here. Here!
Don’t go out of here playing Pentecostal tuck-head and hold you’re head down because some nincompoop doesn’t want to believe what you believe You just need to walk up to people and smile and say, “You’ve had such a privilege extended to you while I was with you today. I am the house of God and uh, you probably feel Holy now, because it’s flowing out of me.”
You can laugh all you want to and write me off as a sick kid, but I’ll tell you I’m not embarrassed, or humiliated, and I’m not stopped, or restricted because of some whoremongers and dirty-mouths and some people who don’t believe fat meat is greasy…I know who I am!! I’m the temple of God, the house of God—and I’m not being arrogant. I’m not being proud, or vindictive, I’m just being factual, pal. I am the temple of God.
When I go to the bagel place, or the gas station, restaurant…I’m the house of God. And the only reason sometimes I don’t feel comfortable in some places is because they ain’t got what I got. And what they got I don’t want. But you get people who look down at you and laugh at you, “…Oh, you’re those churchy people, those Pentecostals, oh yeah, I know you.” Like, you’re the poor, demented stepchild of the universe. Man, you ought to throw that trash off of your shoulder and say, “The devil is a liar!” “I ain’t going to let that trash be on me.” “I’m going to walk through this world and say, ‘Well, I was a whoremonger and a drunk and a cheat and a liar and had a dirty-mouth and mind, but I have been washed in the blood of the lamb. I have been buried in the name of Jesus and received the gift of the Holy Ghost. I have no past and I have a great present and a guaranteed future and I’m not playing for nobody. Now you can bring up my past if you want to, but I’m going to take your accusation to my Father, and my Father said, “If any man be in Christ he is a new creature.” “Old things are passed away, behold all things are become new”. ‘ ”
Don’t look at it as punishment, look at it as privilege. Walk into the hamburger joint, or Wendy’s, or McDonalds, or the washateria, and say, “Hey! I’m fixing to enrich this place right now.” “God’s house has just stepped in.” Now you’re laughing at me, because you think I’m a mental retard, but I’ll tell you what pal; when you and I were whoremongers and liars and drunks and cheaters, we didn’t enrich nothing when we walked into the sleaze-holes that we used to walk in. But now we got the genuine gift of the Creator of the universe inside of us and we can’t do anything but enrich that place by being there. “…When I was like you I was a second rate bimbo but I’m prayin’ for you, because you’re a second rate bimbo right now…because your going to Hell in a hand basket, but I used to be like you…but God saved me and turned me around and I’m not ashamed of what I got”
Isn’t it funny that people that say G-D and S-O-B and a few other words they’re never ashamed of what they say, or embarrassed by what they say. Why are we ashamed to say, “Jesus is Lord, and God has blessed me and I got the Holy Ghost.” Why are we ashamed? That’s a trick of the devil. The devil is trying to put us in a box.
Now, if I didn’t have half of what I have, and had only what some churches of Christianity had, I’d keep my mouth shut, too. Good God in Heaven, man. You got the Holy Ghost! Never had noticed any prophet of God being embarrassed because he was anointed. Never did see Jesus walking around saying, “Sorry If I’m offending you with my religiosity, I’m only God in the flesh.” Guess somehow we walk around and say, “I’m Pentecostal, I go to Army’s place.” We’re so embarrassed we won’t even witness to our own kids! You let some bimbo that couldn’t tell the truth looking at Jesus Christ insult you and shut your mouth and steal your testimony…God forgive us…you say, “Well, you ought not to shove your religion down people’s mouth.” Well, they’re shoving their puke down mine!!
TV, radio, the news and medias are trying to trash my brain every day of the week. How come there ain’t no Cain being raised about that? How about all the billboards with all the naked women and the booze and the honkeytonkin’ and smoking? How come I’m not allowed to say, “Hey, get that off of there, that’s messing with my mind.”? But if I try to put a picture of the church up here, or Acts 2: 38, “Well, you got to tone that religion down now.” Don’t you see what’s going on? Look at someone and say, “I am the house of God.” Keep talking to them, “…and at the present time I am in need of repair.” But, don’t ever judge the contents by the container.
Folks I’m telling you; I don’t even understand it, but if I could grasp some better way than I do of who’s inside of my ignorant carcass — and in a moment He could just flow through my body and transfigure me and energize my mind and mouth…I’d have more brains than Einstein ever thought of having. I’d have more power that any prophet, if I could somehow release the energy that’s inside of me, so I could have a boldness and a faith and a courage and a level of expectancy. My God, what could happen if we would just release what’s inside of us?
The tenants know all about the owner of the land. They know he dwells in a special house, so God now, in His kindness, has decided to dwell in us. I think that’s mind-boggling. I cannot even believe that you’re just sitting there. As if you’re saying with your blank stare, “Why don’t you tell us something exciting like Super Bowl Sunday, or something?” “Or that you made twenty-five hundred dollars on the stock market…something that’s really lasting.” You got God in you!! God has turned around and said; …I want to live in you. I want your mind and body and spirit. I want it to be my abode. I want to dwell in you and never leave you. Don’t kick me out….
God’s House—Bought At Calvary, Occupied At Pentecost
Now I’m going to talk to you for a minute. John 14:1-3, “Let not your heart be troubled; ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.” Please hear me. That is a double statement. It is filled in two stages: At Pentecost Jesus gave us what is now the interim fulfillment of that I will come again and receive you unto myself. We are now enjoying the interim fulfillment of that statement. It has always been futuristic and put off until when the Lord comes back for his church…no, no, no, no. It’s a double stage: I will come again and receive you unto myself. The second stage is “where I am there you may be also.”
The first stage was at Pentecost, when Jesus came in Spirit form to indwell us. For Jesus said in Matthew 18:20, “Where two or three are gathered together, there I am among you in the midst.”
2 Corinthians 3:17 says, “Where the spirit of the Lord is there is liberty and now the Lord is that spirit” And on Pentecost they received “Christ in you the hope of glory.”
In Romans 8: 8-11 Paul writes “…and Christ in you.” Now that’s before the rapture. In Galatians 2:20 Paul says, ” Now the life I live I live by the faith of the son of God who loved me and yet its not I that’s living but Christ who dwelleth in me.” He lives in me!
So do you get what I’m saying? Remember, the cross prepared the place; “I go to prepare a place for you.” The cross purchased the place, but Pentecost allowed the place to become possessed. It’s like — you buy a house. Now, you pay the price for the house. Because you bought the dumb house, don’t mean you’re in it. You might have bought the house in Key West. And you bought it today. Don’t tell everybody you’re living in your house in Key West. You’re living in Gainesville. But there will come a time when you get ready to move, and you move into the house that you bought. The Bible says that God purchased the church with his own blood, but he moved into the house at Pentecost. At Pentecost one hundred and twenty living stones became God’s habitation of the Spirit.
Ephesians 2:22…Living temples of the living God. Notice that when the spirit came, which is the Spirit of Truth; notice where it did not visit at Pentecost—It did not visit Herod’s temple. Why? False. Hundred and twenty in the upper room. True. And the Spirit built Himself a new temple. Now the second stage of what Jesus said in John 14 is also repeated in Acts 1:11 when it says, “Now this same Jesus that you’ve seen go away shall come in like manner also.” So the final stage — that I’m coming to get you and be with you so you can be where I am — will literally take place at the physical return of Jesus and the catching away of the church. But you’ll never take part of that one, if you don’t taste this one, because this is a preparation time. We’re being prepared now for what’s fixing to happen. It’s like what they do to the space shuttle; they don’t just flip a coin and say, “10:30 tomorrow—Florida.” It doesn’t happen like that. There’s a lot of preparation involved. There’s weather conditions, fueling, all kinds of things that have to be figured into it.
Well, God didn’t just say; …Well, I just want a church, I want a church, give me a church…. He didn’t do that! He purchased it, He’s building it, He’s preparing it, He’s purging it, He’s changing it, He’s conforming it and making it like Himself; so when blast off comes — we’re ready! Don’t you get what the Holy Ghost is? The Holy Ghost is to you what fuel is to the space shuttle. I mean, I watched that last space shuttle and it was impressive. It lit up the whole sky. It was amazing. We were two or three miles away and it shook the buildings we were sitting next to. It just rocked them and just lit up the sky. So when I leave, it’s going to be—whoosh!
The world’s not even going to know we’re gone. We’ll just kind of…whoosh…. Say you didn’t want us anyway? Don’t worry about it, we don’t want you either. “…For suddenly there shall come from heaven the sound of a trumpet! And the Lord and the voice of the archangel and the Lord will descend with a shout!”
You ever wonder what the shout is for? I think I know what it is — to wake up the dead! Because the dead in Christ got to get up first! They’re six feet below. They got to get a running start, man. The Bible said the dead in Christ shall…am I in the Bible or am I preaching a cartoon here? The dead in Christ shall rise first! “…Hey, boys, time to get up!! One foot-two foot-three foot-four foot-five, and then, we who are alive… HEY!!!..” shall be caught up — watch: together!!! They’re not going up ahead of us, they’re just coming up to find us on the surface and we’re going to snatch arms and hands and we’re going to go up, and we’re going to say, “Hey, wasn’t it worth living for God?” “Now the parties going to start” “We were just in preparation, but now fulfillment is taking place!”
According to 1 Corinthians 15:50-52 it says, “In a moment, a twinkling of an eye.” You see? …Now you laughed at me, because you thought I was an idiot when I say, when I leave it’ll just be — whoosh! I was trying not to tell you how much noise I’ll make. I was trying to tell you how fast my eyelashes will flap, because the Bible says it will happen in a twinkling of an eye. By the time you go “Hal-le-lu-jah”, it’ll be over. I tell you; God can move you faster than the speed of light. God can move bodies at the speed of thought. God can think a thought and an angel can be dispatched from another world and go through the entire cosmos and show up at your carcass before you ask the next thing in prayer. All God’s got to do is think something.
Now watch: Our present bodies bear the image of the first Adam. That’s what makes us incapable of receiving our Holy Ghost inheritance in full measure now, because our bodies are messed up. …Soul’s redeemed, spirit’s reborn, but body’s untouched by redemption. The reason why Jesus was the fullness of the Godhead bodily and had the Holy Ghost without measure, was because He didn’t have a sinful body. I didn’t say He wasn’t capable of sin, I just said He wasn’t born with sin.
Watch: Ephesians 1:14 says that when you receive the Holy Ghost you receive the earnest of your inheritance. Romans 8:23 says that the Holy Ghost is the first fruits of the spirit. Hebrews 6:5 says that those of you that have received the Holy Ghost have tasted of the power of the world to come. So it’s like God said, “There, that’s all I’m going to give you, that’s all you can take. Hey, I paid for the carpets don’t worry about it.” Hear me. That’s what He said, “…That’s all you can take.” You say, “Well I want more Holy Ghost.” He says, “Well, let’s have more of your flesh die. If I can get your ignorant carcass sanctified and if I can get your flesh dead, I’ll put more in you.”
I’m trying to help you. Don’t get frustrated because you can’t do all the nifty stuff Jesus did. You ain’t got the same measure of the Spirit that Jesus had. He had the Spirit without measure. You got a teacup. He had a fifty-five gallon drum. He had no sinful flesh to deal with. We’ve got a cursed sinful flesh to deal with.
Now watch, “…When that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away. As we have born the image of the earthy, so shall we also bear the image of the heavenly. It doth not yet appear what we shall be.
But we know that when we shall see him we shall be like him for we shall see him as he is.”
We Are The Temple
Apparently, then, your victory will flow from your vision. At His second coming, the preparation that has been going on in our lives through the initial infusion of the Holy Ghost, will be finalized and the saints that have been God’s house, temple, and building for the last two thousand years will have reached their final destiny as God’s eternal abodes. That’s why there’s no temple in New Jerusalem. You are!
2 Corinthians 5:1, “For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.” God’s got a wardrobe waiting on us. You lay this one down and God says, “All right, now, I’ve got you one that won’t ever get rusty, or ever get old, or hurt, or get sick.”
Revelation 21:1-3, “And I saw a new heaven and a new earth for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away, and there was no more sea. And I John saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle” …the what? The tabernacle? What’s this thing about houses and buildings and shrines and temples and tabernacles? God’s hung up on this stuff. The tabernacle of God is with man. And He will dwell with them. They’re going to be His eternal dwelling place. They will have finalized the long journey of becoming what he wanted them to be.
“…the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.” Watch; Revelation 21:22, “And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it.” Now wait a minute, let’s just get what he said: The Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple. But you are full of the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb. Do we have two temples, or do we have one? Lets try it again. The Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple thereof. But the Lord God and the Lamb, being the same synonymous person, fill the believer, so you are the temple. You should see the looks of you. Is that in the Bible…? The last time I read it was.
Moses, David, and Solomon built God a house. They were all types that were filled by Jesus Christ. But the Bible says that Jesus was counted more worthy of more glory and honor than any of those houses. David built Him a house on Mount Zion, that he knew that Jesus Christ would be greater than that house. Solomon erected a magnificent temple, but behold, a greater One than Solomon is here! God is building a house! “…I’ve been given the privilege to be a part of the construction.”
The above article, “God is Preparing a Place – For Who?” is written by J.W. Arnold. The article was excerpted from the third chapter of Arnold’s book God is Building Himself a House.
The material is most likely copyrighted and should not be reprinted under any other name or author. However, this material may be freely used for personal study or research purposes.