October 5 – In The Presence Of The King

Read: Jeremiah 4:19-6:15, Colossians 1:18-2:7, Psalm 77:1-20, Proverbs 24:23-25

 Yet now he has reconciled you to himself through the death of Christ in his physical body. As a result, he has brought you into his own presence, and you are holy and blameless as you stand before him without a single fault. Colossians 1:22

Relate: You stand before Him without a single fault. When Isaac Titsingh, the representative of the Dutch East India Company, was brought before the Emperor of China, Europeans got their first experience with kowtowing. The word kowtow literally means to knock your head on the ground. For the entire meeting the Emperor was on a throne above and Isaac was not allowed to raise his gaze higher than the emperor’s feet. When the meeting was over, Isaac had to kneel and bow his head to the ground three times. He would then stand and walk backward 10 steps and do it again. After this second time he would walk backward until he came to the exit of the throne room where he would kowtow one more time then walk backwards out of the room. No one was ever allowed to turn their back to the Emperor.

Throughout time, from China through Persia, Europe, and even in early American societies like the Mayans and the Incas, there have been elaborate rituals that needed to be followed when one entered the presence of the King (or Sultan, Emperor, etc). As a general rule the only ones exempt from these traditions would be the immediate family of the one being honored. Only they can stand before him.

 

React: Maybe it’s just me but I’ve got the process all mixed up. I see the greatness, and the goodness of my God and then I look at my own sinful self, and I realize that I don’t deserve to come into His presence. So I try to get my act together. I try to clean myself up before coming before Him. I forget that it is He who makes me holy, not me. God says in another place that He will display His holiness through those that come before Him. As awesome and as majestic various earthly courts have tried to make themselves, none can even come close to the greatness of the One true God. And He has called me into his presence. And by the shed blood of the Lamb, I can enter. And as I do, I am made holy and blameless. And I can stand before him with confidence. Because I am His child.

 

Respond: God, I don’t know what to say. You are so great. You are so holy. I don’t deserve to come before You, yet You bid me come. Help me to not continue to run and hide from You in my guilt. Help me not to react to Your holiness and my sin as did Adam. I know that there is nothing I could ever do to make myself holy. I know that You already did it. Thank You. 

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