BETHEL (HOUSE OF GOD) By Pastor Siani HarpalGENESIS 35:3
Genesis 35:3 “Then come, let us go up to Bethel, where I will build an altar to God, who answered me in the day of my distress and who has been with me wherever I have gone.”
What is Bethel?
- Place of Blessings Genesis 35:9
- Place of divine appearance Genesis 35:7
- Place where we can talk with God Genesis 35:14
- Place of Promise Genesis 28:19 ; 35:11,12
- Place of God’s Presence Genesis 28:16
- Door to heaven Genesis 28:17
- Place of Protection Genesis 35:7
- Place of Prayers Genesis 35:3
- House of God Genesis 28:17
Jacob said his whole family to come to the Bethel, the house of God. Today we see in the churches, only parents they come. It is very important to come to the house of God as a whole family in order to receive the blessings from God. If you are the child of God you must be very excited to come to the house of God.
Requirements to come to the House of God:
- Put away the foreign gods : Genesis 35:2 “Then Jacob said unto his household, and to all that were with him, Put away the strange gods that are among you, and be clean, and change your garments”. God’s people were to get rid of all their foreign gods. I am not talking about putting image and worshipping. You may be thinking you are a believer, attending church regularly. But what are idolatry? Colossians 3:5 “Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry”. If you have these things in you then you are still worshipping idols. How many people today still hang on to the gods and idols of this earth? Remember, anything can become a god to us. Whatever consumes us—whatever we give ourselves to, whatever dominates us, whatever we look to for help, whatever we put before God Himself—that thing becomes a god or idol in our lives. It may be things such as money, wealth, property, business, power, clothes, vehicles, astrology, fame, family, sex, alcohol, drugs, sex, sports. God’s call is clear: put away all the gods and idols in your lives.
“Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth” (Exodus 20:4).
“Ye shall make you no idols nor graven image, neither rear you up a standing image, neither shall ye set up any image of stone in your land, to bow down unto it: for I am the LORD your God” Leviticus 26:1
“Take heed to yourselves, that your heart be not deceived, and ye turn aside, and serve other gods, and worship them” (Deut. 11:16)
“I am the LORD: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images” (Isaiah 42:8)
- Purify Yourself Genesis 35:2 We are to cleanse and purify ourselves. Why we need? Hebrews 12:14 Make every effort to live in peace with everyone and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord. My friends, my God looks inside. I Corinthians 3:16 “Don't you know that you yourselves are God's temple and that God's Spirit dwells in your midst? “Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God” (2 Cor. 7:1).
“If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and meet for the master’s use, and prepared unto every good work” (2 Tim. 2:21).
“Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded” (James 4:8).
- Change your Garments: Genesis 35:2 We are to change our clothing. This symbolizes putting off the old life of sin and putting on the new life of godliness.“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new” (2 Cor. 5:17). I am not talking about the clothes you are wearing , but the Bible says we need to Put off the garments of Anger, wrath, malice, Blasphemy, filthy communication (Colossians 3:8) and we have to put on Colossians 3:12 “Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience”. Prodigal son before coming to his father he put on new clothes Luke 15:22 “But the father said to his servants, 'Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet”.
- We have to arise from the place where we are sitting Genesis 35:3
The Place where you are sitting will not get you to Bethel. Prodigal son said “ I will go” Luke 15:18 “I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you”. We need to seek HIM with all our hearts and lives. “But if from thence thou shalt seek the LORD thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul” (Deut. 4:29). “And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart” (Jeremiah 29:13). “For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened” (Luke 11:10).