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This is the question I would like you to ask yourself today. Am I a carrier of the presence of God? God wants us to be carriers of His presence to the world. Everywhere we go, we can carry the presence of God.
Now theologically I know this to be true. Once I ask Jesus Christ to come into my heart, I have the presence of God in me. I know that the Spirit of God is resident in me. God is in me through the Holy Spirit. So, in a sense theologically, I know that if you have asked Christ to come in to your life and heart, I know that Christ is in you. You have in you the presence of God.
However, when I am talking about being a carrier of the presence of God, I am not just talking about Christ in you. I am talking about the manifest glory of God. Now it is true that God is everywhere. Right? Can you name a place that God is not? God is everywhere.
Experiencing the manifest presence of God is different. There are times that we experience His presence that obviously is different than just knowing God is everywhere. This is what I am talking about.
I am going to illustrate this through the word. We would expect Jesus to carry the full presence of God because Jesus is God. We know that for a good portion of His life that He seemed to be hidden. In other words, the full manifestation was not seen. The glory of God was not totally revealed. There was a cloaking that took place until Jesus entered in to His public ministry.
Once Jesus entered in to His public ministry, people everywhere experienced the full measure of the glory of God. In John 4, Jesus encountered a woman at the well, and He engaged in a conversation with her. As they talked, the woman realized who Jesus was. She got so excited that she ran back to town and told the people to come and meet the man who told her everything she did. Can this be the Messiah? So the people came streaming to the village to see Him.
What happened to her? She encountered the presence of God. All of a sudden in this conversation, she realized who He was, thus encountering the glory of God and presence of God. Everywhere Jesus went, He brought this presence with Him.
In Mark 1:34, Jesus healed many sick people who had various diseases. He ordered many demons to come out of the people, but because they knew who He was, He refused to allow the demons to speak. Now, how did they know? Did He have a sign on Him? The demons knew what the glory of God was like. Jesus told them to be quiet because it wasn't quite time for the full manifestation of Who Jesus was to be revealed.
In Mark 5, Jesus had crossed the lake to the region of the Gerasenes. This demonized man saw Jesus. Verses 6 and 7 say that, "when he saw Jesus from a distance, he ran and fell on his knees in front of Him. He gave a terrible scream shouting, 'What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? Swear to God that you won't torture me!'"
How did this demon know that this was Jesus? How did he know that this was the Messiah? Did Jesus send someone in front of Him to say He was coming? No. The spirits of darkness sense the presence of God. Jesus did not have a label or name tag. He just arrived on shore and began to walk, and this demonized person saw Jesus. The demons had the man bow down before Jesus, crying, asking Jesus to not torture them. They experienced the presence of God in their midst and therefore acted accordingly.
When Jesus comes into the room, demons get nervous because of the presence of God. You carry the presence of Jesus with you. He is there. But how much of His presence are you carrying? How much of His presence radiates from you.
In Acts 16:16,17, Paul and Silas were going to the place of prayer. It reads, "We were met by a slave girl who had a spirit of divination. She earned a great deal of money for her owners by fortune-telling. This girl followed Paul and the rest of us, shouting, 'These men are servants of the Most High God, who are telling you the way to be saved.'" You have to wonder - how did she know they were bond-servants? How did those demons know that? Were Paul and Silas out there passing out invitations to an evangelistic tent meeting?
No. They were going to the place of prayer. This demonized person saw them and came running up to them. They were experiencing the manifest presence of God. It was not like Paul looked like an evangelist. There was not anything about his demeanor that even looked spiritual. In fact when Paul was addressing his critics in 1 Corinthians 10:10 he said, "For some say, 'His letters are weighty and forceful, but in person he is unimpressive and his speaking amounts to nothing.'"
In others words, he was not much to look at or to listen to. He probably wasn't the kind of person you would like at and say, "the great anointing of God is on him." He probably was one of the least types of persons you would think would carry that kind of anointing. This gives us a little hope, doesn't it?
Yet, Paul was going through town and this demon saw him and began to proclaim this over him. This was because of the manifest presence of God around Paul the apostle.
Peter was a person that walked in great anointing and power. In Acts 5:15,16, it says that as a result of the apostles work "people brought the sick into the streets and laid them on beds and mats so that at least Peter's shadow might fall on some of them as he passed by. Crowds came in from the villages around Jerusalem, bringing their sick and those possessed by evil spirits, and all of them were healed."
There was such an anointing upon Peter that the people knew he was going to be walking along the side of the road. They wanted to get close enough. So what they did is line the cots along the road, hoping that as Peter walked by, and his shadow was cast upon these people - that they would be healed.
What were they really attracted to? Was it Peter? No. It was the presence of God. You see Peter, as he walked, carried the presence of God. That is what they were attracted to. That is what they were drawn to. They were drawn to the presence of God.