In this article/sermon you will be introduced the presence of God and discover God is big enough to be everywhere. You will learn what it is and how His presence can impact your personal life. It is also includes application questions.
There is no place in creation where God does not exist, and wherever God exist He does so in His complete divine fullness. Before we get into the applications of God’s presence there are some general truths you need to know about the presence of God.
- First, God’s presence is free from limitations. In 1 Kings 8, Solomon dedicates the magnificent temple he built as a dwelling place for the glory of God so that Israel will know it is God’s house. But Solomon did not want the people to get confused and think that God’s presence was limited to their building. So he prays in verse 27, “Even the highest heavens cannot contain you. How much less this Temple I have built!” (NLT). The point is God’s presence is immense and infinite. Many of us understand the problem of immensity as we gain weight. Our clothes get tight and we start bursting out of them. When man tries to stuff God into the universe, Solomon says to God, “You burst out of it. It cannot contain You.”
- Secondly, all of God’s presence exist everywhere. He is not broken up into parts. Each little piece of the universe has the entire presence of God. We know this because God’s being possesses what theologians call simplicity. That is, He cannot be divided. He exists everywhere at the same time. I think Psalm 139:7 is trying to communicate this truth when the Psalmist said, “I can never escape from your Spirit! I can never get away from your presence! If I go up to heaven, You are there; if I go down to the grave, You are there. If I ride the wings of the morning, if I dwell by the farthest oceans, even there Your hand will guide me, and Your strength will support me” (vs. 7-10, NLT). It’s like air. Wherever you have air, you have every component that makes air. You do not divide air. And you have as much of God with you as I have with me.
- Third, God’s presence means God’s involvement. Sometimes God’s presence is referred to as His “omni-presence.” The word “omni” means “all.” The omnipresence of God means that His complete essence is fully present in all places at all times. According to Psalm 139, no matter where you are God’s hand is there to guide you and His strength is there to support you. God’s presence is everywhere. The Bible says He formed you in your mother’s womb. He knows how many hairs are on your head. He knows your thoughts. Because of God’s omni-presence He can be omni-involved.
- Fourth, God’s presence does not mean we are aware of His presence. Even though God is completely present everywhere it does not mean that He demonstrates or reveals His presence in the same ways everywhere. God may reveal Himself through a mighty wind or a still small voice. Sometimes He will conceal His presence. Sometimes God’s presence is there, but we don’t see Him because of our own sin or lack of understanding.
If you had to give a simple definition of God’s presence you could define it as “the totality of God is everywhere at the same time.”
With all that said, what is the impact and implications of God’s presence in my life?
I have the greatest opportunity to experience true satisfaction
First, because of God’s presence… I have the greatest opportunity to experience true satisfaction. It is amazing how quickly we can become dissatisfied and discontent with what we have. However, God desires for us to learn the secret of contentment and satisfaction. We must learn that contentment does not come in material or physical packages. Real satisfaction comes from the presence of God. The writer of Hebrews said it this way, “Don’t love money; be satisfied with what you have. For God has said, ‘I will never fail you. I will never abandon you’” (Hebrews 13:5, NLT). Through His Word, God is connecting true satisfaction and His presence. They go together.
The follower of Jesus can experience true inner contentment because God has promised His presence in their life. God is saying, “No matter where you are in life, what you have or don’t have, you can still experience contentment in life because of My presence in your life.” You lose contentment when you focus on things. You grow in contentment when you focus on God. Satisfaction in life begins with the Savior, not your salary.
The question you need to ask yourself is, “Where does your satisfaction in life come from?” Am I trying to find contentment and joy in life through positions, people, popularity, power, or possessions? Or am I trying to find contentment in the only place it can be found… in the presence of God? God’s presence gives us the real opportunity to be the most contented and satisfied person we can be.
I have the greatest opportunity to experience real peace
Number two, because God’s presence is everywhere I have the greatest opportunity to experience real peace. God’s presence has the power to remove fear, anxiety and worry from a believer’s life. Listen to Philippians 4:5-6, “The Lord is near. Don’t worry about anything” (HCSB). Why are we told not to worry about anything? Because the presence of God is close.
Even in Psalm 23, David wrote, “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for You are with me…” (NIV 84, v.4). As a follower of Jesus, we don’t have to experience worry, dread, or fear because God’s presence is with us.
The presence of God makes all the difference in a believer’s life. It makes the difference between being content and discontent. It makes the difference between experiencing peace or worry. It makes all the difference.
The question I need to ask you today is, “Do you have more faith in God’s presence than you do your problems?” Do you believe that your problems will prevail or do you believe God’s presence will prevail? If your focus is on the problem and the valley in life then you will worry and be anxious and fearful. If your focus is on God’s presence and His power and protection then you are a candidate for a worry free life.
Because God is everywhere, you have the opportunity to experience a life free from worry and fear.
I have the greatest motivation to pursue godliness
Number three, because God’s presence is everywhere I have the greatest motivation to pursue godliness. In Job 31:1-4 we discover one reason why Job was such a man of integrity and godliness. Job says,
I made a covenant with my eyes not to look with lust at a young woman. For what has God above chosen for us? What is our inheritance from the Almighty on high? Isn’t it calamity for the wicked and misfortune for those who do evil? Doesn’t he see everything I do and every step I take? (vs. 1-4, NLT)
The reason Job made a covenant with his eyes to not look at a woman lustfully was because God sees everything and is everywhere. The motivation for Job’s pursuit of integrity, honesty, godliness and holiness was his keen awareness of the presence of God no matter where he was or what he was doing.
The question I need to ask is, “Does your awareness of God’s presence affect your private life?” Does knowing that God sees behind every closed door affect your life? Knowing that God is everywhere is one motivational factor for a pure life. When the knowledge of God’s presence being everywhere goes from your head to your heart it effects what you do everywhere you are.
Because God is everywhere I am motivated to live a holy life.
I have the greatest privilege to experience God anywhere at any time
Number four, because God is everywhere I have the greatest privilege to experience God anywhere at any time. We can talk to God while driving to work, while washing dishes, mowing the yard, cleaning the house or taking a shower. God is always ready and available to listen to His children.
An example of this is Philippians 4:5 which states, “The Lord is near. Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses every thought, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus” (vs. 5-7, HCSB). Notice the nearness of God is closely related to talking to God. He is near. He is present. Experience Him throughout the day. Talk to Him. Listen to Him.
The question I need to ask is, “Do you make use of God’s availableness?” Do you seize the opportunities to experience God on a regular basis throughout the day? God wants us to experience Him every day of our lives. One of the ways you do this is to consistently talk to Him throughout your day. Because God is everywhere I have the greatest privilege to experience God anywhere at any time.
I have the greatest opportunity to be used by God
Number five, because God is everywhere I have the greatest opportunity to be used by God anywhere at any time. God can use me to bless and minister to others anywhere at any time throughout my life.
In Matthew 28 Jesus said, “Go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age” (vs. 19-20, NLT).
Jesus is saying, “I will be with you as you go and minister and bless others. I will be with you as you teach my Word and encourage others. My presence will be with you as you go about doing My work.” When you are talking to that person at work about the Lord, Jesus says, “My presence is with you while you are doing that.” When you are talking to your kids about God, Jesus is with you helping you. When you are preparing that lesson to teach in Sunday School or small group, Jesus is with you. When you are blessing others in His name, His presence is with you.
God wants to work in you and through you. The question we need to ask is, “Are you allowing God to use you and work through you?” How are you involved in making disciples? I believe as we use our gifts and are involved in making disciples in some way, that is when we experience the presence of God most often and most deeply. Because God is everywhere, I have the greatest opportunity to be used by God.
To help you this week focus on the presence of God we have provided a “Focus Card” in the bulletin. I want you to use it this week to remind you of God’s presence.
On one side it has Psalm 139:7-10.
- Psalm 139:7-10
“I can never escape from Your Spirit! I can never get away from Your presence! If I go up to heaven, You are there; If I go down to the grave, You are there. If I ride the wings of the morning, if I dwell by the farthest oceans, even there Your hand will guide me, and Your strength will support me.” (NLT)
On the other side it has the implications of God’s presence we looked at today.
Because of God’s presence…
- I have the greatest opportunity to experience true satisfaction (Heb. 13:5).
- I have the greatest opportunity to experience real peace (Philip. 4:5-6; Ps. 23:4).
- I have the greatest motivation to pursue godliness
- (Job 31:1-4).
- I have the greatest privilege to experience God anywhere at any time (Philip. 4:5-6).
- I have the greatest opportunity to be used by God anywhere at any time (Matt. 28:19).