The Indwelling of the King
‘Is not her King in her?’— Jer. viii. 19.
WAITING for a royal coming,—What expectation, what preparation, what tension ! A glimpse for many, a full view for some, a word for a favoured few, and the pageant is over like a dream. The Sovereign may come, but does not stay.
Our King comes not thus : He comes not to pass, but to ‘ dwell in the midst of thee; ‘ not only in His Church collectively, but in each believer individually. We pray, ‘Abide with us,’ and He answers in the sublime plural of Godhead, ‘ We will come unto him, and make our abode with him.’ Even this grand abiding with us does not extend to the full marvels of His condescension and His nearness, for the next time He speaks of it He changes the with’ to ‘in,’ and thenceforth only speaks of ‘ I in you,’ ‘I in him,’ ‘ I in them.’
1 Zech. ii. 10. 2 2 Cor. vi. i6. 3 Luke xxiv, 29,
4 John xiv. 23. 6 John xv. 4, 5; ib. xvii. 23,
^Johniii. 9. 7 Luke i, 34.
Now do not let us say, ‘ How can this be ?’ but, like Mary, ‘How shall this be ?’ The means, though not the mode, of the mystery is revealed for our grasp of adoring wonder : That Christ may dwell in your heart by faith.’ It is almost too wonderful to dare to speak of. Christ Himself, my King, coming to me, into me ! abiding, dwelling in my very heart! Really staying there all day, all night, wherever I am, whatever I am doing; here in my poor unworthy heart at this very moment ! And this only because the grace that flowed from His own love has broken the bars of doubt, and because He has given the faith that wanted Him and welcomed Him. Let us pause a little to take it in !
The more we have known of the plague of our own heart, the more inconceivably wonderful this indwelling of Christ will appear,—much more wonderful than that He chose a manger as His royal resting-place, for that had never been defiled by sin, and had never harboured His enemy. It is no use trying to comprehend this incomprehensible grace of our King,—we have only to believe His promise, saying, ‘Amen ; the Lord God of my Lord the King says so too.’
There should be three practical results of this belief:—i. Holiness. We must see to it that we resolutely ‘ put away ‘ all that ought not to be in His royal abode, ” Having, therefore, these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.” Confidence, What does the citadel fear when an invincible general is within it ? The Lord thy God in the midst of thee is mighty ; He will save.’ He is ‘ the wall of fire round about,’ and ‘the glory in the midst of her;’ and ‘ he that toucheth you toucheth the apple of His eye.” . Joy. Yes ! ‘ Be glad and rejoice with all the heart ‘sing and rejoice, O daughter of Zion ; for, lo, I come, and I will dwell in the midst of thee, saith the Lord.’
1 Eph. iii. 17. 2 I Kings viii. 38. 3 Luke ii. 7.
4 I Kings i. 36. 6 Eph. iv. 31. 6 i Cor. iii, 16, 17.
7 2 Cor. vii, z.