In the temple of the Lord there was a curtain. Hebrews 9 explains that this curtain divided the Holy of Holies, the place where the presence of the Lord dwelt, from the rest of the temple and people. It divided God from man. Only the high priest could enter into the Holy of Holies, into the presence of God. Even then, only at certain times and with careful preparations, could he dare enter into such a holy dwelling. Everyone else was outcast from the presence of the Lord because of the blemish of their sin. But then Jesus died and the curtain tore. In a moment, the barrier between God and man was ripped in two for the willing to cross through.
It is interesting that the curtain tore, yet was not disintegrated or destroyed completely. Jesus’ death and resurrection didn’t automatically create a perfect relationship between God and man, but instead, created a passageway through the curtain, for man to reach God and God to reach man. It created a way. The barrier hung, but now they could walk through despite their sin and shortcomings, because Jesus’ blood marked them as holy in the presence of the Lord. But still, they must choose to walk through the tear, into His presence. At the point of our salvation, we had the ultimate choice to walk through this tear into communion and relationship with God. But it doesn’t end there. Yes, our salvation is sealed and no work in the flesh can add or subtract from this saving, yet despite this goodness of relationship that generation after generation before us longed to have, we neglect to cultivate it. We neglect to spend time in the presence of the Lord available to us each and every moment.
Let us not forget the wonder of this gift! Let us not become complacent or grow numb to how marvelous and sanctifying it is to spend time in God’s word, time talking to the Lord, times of encouragement with other believers that point us back to the goodness and relationship we have with our Savior! Let us not neglect to seek continual fullness and intimacy in the presence of our God.
Read Luke 23 and answer the questions to help you reflect on the passage.