Monday, April 11, 2011
I love spending time at Caribou Coffee. Nowadays, I've found myself frequenting Starbucks Coffee on a more regular basis due to the fact that the nearest Caribou is a mere 4 hour drive east. But when I was a student at AFLBS, and even when I lived in Fargo, it wasn't uncommon for me to spend three to four (or more!) hours at Caribou working on homework. On such occasions, when I would return to my dorm room or apartment, I would notice that the wonderful smell of coffee came with me. The intensity of the coffee smell was so strong in Caribou that it permeated my backpack, my Bible and other textbooks, and even my clothes!
The other day when I was reading through the book of Ezekiel, I was struck my the reality of a permeation of an entirely different nature. The Lord is instructing Ezekiel in regards to the temple and the ordinances for the Levites. He says, "'When they go out into the outer court, into the outer court to the people, they shall put off their garments in which they have been ministering and lay them in the holy chamber; then they shall put on other garments so that they will not transmit holiness to the people with their garments.'" (Ezekiel 44:19)
Woah! Does that floor anybody else? The priests were to take off the garments that they wore in the presence of the LORD in the holy chambers and put on another set of clothes so that they wouldn't transmit holiness to the people. That is absolutely astounding to me. That God's holiness is so incredible, so powerful, so potent, so real that it could be transmitted.
Remember Moses? When he came down from Mt. Sinai, after being in the presence of the LORD, his face shone. (Exodus 34:29-35)
And what do we do with the LORD's holiness? What do we do in His presence? We bring our coffee mugs into the sanctuary to sip during the service because we woke up late. We let our minds wander to all the homework we have to do after church or the Super Bowl party we're going to attend later that night. We clean the dirt out from under our fingernails. Oh man.
I may have linked this song once before on a blog. Even if I did, listen to it again. I think it's a convicting song about the holiness of the LORD and our treatment of Him as a holy God: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D8fSjtPLuBQ&feature=related
Lord, forgive us for not regarding You as holy because that is what You are . . .that is who You are. Give us a fear of You, an understanding of You are as a holy God. Bring us to our knees before you!