Fellowship with God
Whatever else we may say about salvation and the eternal state of believers, it centers around fellowship with God.
Today’s reading: Ezekiel 47-48; 1 John 1
And the name of the city from that time on shall be, The Lord Is There.” Ezekiel 48:35b
3 that which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. 1 John 1:3
Ezekiel concludes the long description of the temple, the city, and the land with redistributed territories for the twelve tribes with the simple words, “And the name of the city from that time on shall be, The Lord Is There.” What more can anyone desire than that the Lord should be there? Knowing that God is with us gives confidence in the face of huge danger and the threat of death itself (Deuteronomy 31:6-8; Joshua 1:4-6; Psalm 23). Several Old Testament figures learned the devastating impact of being abandoned by God (Exodus 33:3, 15; 1 Samuel 4:21-22; Judges 16:20). Not that they could actually ever be totally away from His presence, but they could be, and sometimes were, under His wrath and judgment and without His blessing and favor (Psalm 139:7-12).
The Apostle John also refers to the blessing of fellowship with God through Jesus Christ. God came to dwell among us, he says, and we saw Him. We touched Him. He came to give us eternal life and fellowship with the Father and the Son.[See also John 1:14-17;17:3].
To know Him in truth and to be forgiven and accepted, that is what eternal life is about. The city which Ezekiel described points to that heavenly city, the New Jerusalem where God dwells and where His people live with Him. As John would write later:
“ And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God.” (Revelation 21:3).
So whatever else we may say about the eternal state of believers, it will be unclouded, undiminished fellowship with God. Be faithful as you wait for His coming.