HOUSMAIL HM#027 - BECOMING A ROOM IN GOD'S HOUSE             16 June 1999 __________________________________________________________________________

"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." (John 14:1-3 KJV)

Modern versions translate "mansions" as "rooms" (RSV, NIV) or "dwelling places" (NASB, GNB). __________________________________________________________________________

These verses have been one of the traditional strongholds for the doctrine of "The Immortality Of The Soul". They are often read at funerals, to offer comfort to the bereaved, who are falsely promised, on inadequate grounds, that their departed loved one is now occupying his luxurious "Mansion in Heaven".

Amongst those who believe in "Conditional Immortality", the "mansions" are usually relocated to the Earth, and the timing for the saints to occupy them is said to be AFTER the Resurrection.

However, both of these interpretations fail to capture the real meaning of this wonderful Gospel promise from Jesus, that IN THIS PRESENT LIFE, we can become "rooms" in God's house, in which GOD will make his abode!

We are the rooms. God is the occupant!

Jesus has ALREADY gone to the Cross to prepare a place for US to become rooms in God's house, in which God can live.

And He has ALREADY come back again from the grave, to take us to himself, so that we can be in the same "place", where He already was ..... BEFORE HE DIED!

Jesus enlarges on this in John 14:23: "If a man loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him."

And Paul says the same thing in 1 Cor 6:19: "Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, which you have from God? You are not your own; you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body."

Paul also speaks of this in Col 2:9-10, as a PRESENT reality for the Saints: "For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily, and you have come to fullness of life in him, who is the head of all rule and authority."

Brethren, this is no future "Pie in the sky". Nor is it merely a future "pie on earth"! It is a thrilling promise for the here and now!

Think of it! When God gives the Holy Spirit to us, it means that He has placed part of Himself in us. He lives within us IN person! We have become His children! (Rom 8:15-16)

And THAT Paul says, is THE GUARANTEE of our FUTURE INHERITANCE. (Eph 1:14)

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In passing, we note here that the true Children of God will NOT confuse this guarantee with "Gifts Of The Spirit". The REAL mark of God's presence in His Children is the "FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT". Without that there is no evidence of the presence of the Spirit of God, and there can be NO guarantee at all!

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The same John who recorded in his Gospel, that wonderful promise for the here and now, also wrote of its extension into the future:

"See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, WE ARE GOD'S CHILDREN NOW; it does not yet appear what we shall be, but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. And every one who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure." (1 John 3:1-3)

God grant that we may so learn to love Jesus that we WILL keep His commandments ..... and that we may also experience, both now in this present life .... and for ever ..... the blessing which flows when the Father and the Son, together, come to make their abode with us ..... through the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit.