Prayer is a wondrous thing! You get to talk directly with God, walk right into His presence! In the sermon yesterday morning the pastor went through a lot of things about prayer that I don’t typically think about, and I wanted to share.
So let’s go back to the beginning. Yes, the beginning with the first man and woman. They got to be directly in God’s presence, taking walks with God! (Genesis 3:8a) But when they sinned that had to be taken away. Their sin meant they had to be driven away from God’s holy presence (Genesis 3:8-24). But God didn’t abandon us humans because He still loved us. Though it was not anywhere near the same experience as before, He still allowed us to access Him. People still prayed and God still answered.
Further on into the Bible in the history of Israel, God told them to build the Tabernacle for Him. Within that Tabernacle was the Holy of Holies, the place where God’s presence was. No one was ever allowed in except for the High Priest, and only under very strict circumstances. It was separated by a veil that God Himself gave instruction to make. The veil was made to be a barrier (Exodus 26:31-34). Eventually this Tabernacle, a tent, was replaced by the Temple, a building. But the veil remained.
But further on into human history, God changed that. When Jesus died on the cross to pay for our sins so they could be forgiven, the veil in the Temple that separated off the Holy of Holies was ripped in two, right down the middle, from top to bottom (Matthew 27:50-51; Luke 23:45). When Jesus completed what God had for Him to do, that meant we could have fuller, better access to God’s presence! (Hebrews 10, especially verses 19-20) God ripped that veil wide open to say, “Come on in!”