On the day the tabernacle was set up, the cloud covered the tabernacle, the tent of the testimony, and it appeared like fire above the tabernacle from evening until morning.
~ Numbers 9:15 (CSB)
The great distinction of a true believer is the indwelling Holy Spirit. How careful should we be, lest to offend the Divine Guest!
The word Shekinah does not appear in the bible but the concept clearly does. The Jewish rabbis coined this extra-biblical expression, a form of a Hebrew word that literally means “he caused to dwell,” signifying that it was a divine visitation of the presence or dwelling of the Lord God on this earth. The Shekinah Glory Cloud was a visible manifestation of God’s presence with the Israelites. At night the cloud would light up and during the day it turned dark: it was visible night and day. Not only was it a visible manifestation of God’s presence, it was manifestation of His power. It gave light to the Israelites as they prepared to cross the Red Sea, at the same time, it blinded the Egyptian army so they could not see. This cloud not only lead them through the sea, he lead them through the wilderness. When the cloud stopped: the Israelites stopped and camped. When the cloud lifted and moved, they broke camp and followed. If the cloud moved at night, the Israelites traveled by night. Keep in mind, there were over 2,000,000 of them and the length of their caravan was probably 20-30 miles long. We are talking about a powerful Cloud. Wouldn’t you like to have seen this cloud? I would: a fire cloud that could give light from here to Huntsville, wow, that is some Cloud. If you think like myself you are probably wondering: “Why doesn’t the LORD give us such a grand and glorious manifestation of His power, glory and presence?
I think there is an explanation. First of all, the Israelites were very immature in their faith. They were filled with doubt and skepticism: they desperately needed the Cloud. Besides this, we have things that they didn’t have. We have the word of God in print. Really, would you trade their glory Cloud for the word? I know the Cloud was awesome but we have Jesus who came to us, not in a cloud, but in the form of a man. Would you trade their Skekinah Glory Cloud for Christmas and the incarnation? John said, And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.” Folks, as much as I would love to see that Glorious Cloud, I would not trade places with any Israelite including Moses. We are so blessed to be living this side of the cross. I don’t know about you, but I have no desire to live in a world without Jesus. Before Jesus ascended back to heaven, He said, “I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever. He is the Spirit of truth. The world is unable to receive him because it doesn’t see Him or know Him. But you do know Him, because He remains with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I am coming to you.” John 14:16-17 (CSB) We have the Holy Spirit to lead and guide us. He is not visible to the eye but He is very real and He abides with us and in us. Why do you have the desire to please the LORD? Why do you tithe when there are so many things you could buy for yourself with the tithe money? Why do you love people who don’t love you? Why do you keep faithfully serving when little or no appreciation is shown? There is only one explanation: it is not you but Christ in you via the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is not a visible manifestation or a warm and fuzzy feeling: He is a reality. If HE is in YOU…YOU will love JESUS and want to please HIM. If you are filled with pride and rebellion like Cain; He is not in you.