Friday, February 4, 2011

The Lord Was With Him, But Who Was He? 1 Chronicles 9:20

God Loves You
You might say someone is talented, smart, or attractive; but nothing beats the statement made about the ancient gatekeeper, Phinehas.

 "In earlier times Phinehas son of Eleazar was in charge of the gatekeepers, and the Lord was with him." 1 Chronicles 9:20. NIV.

What does scripture mean when it says "The Lord was with him?" We know it means some blessing on Phinehas. Was the Lord like a companion to him? Was this ancient gatekeeper somehow more holy than the rest of us?

If a friend says "I am with you," it means he is supporting your cause or activity, or he agrees with your actions or ideas. If it gives courage and comfort to think our friends are with us, what if that friend is the Lord Almighty?

Phinehas was the chief doorkeeper, not a king or a prophet. It was a humble position in the community of the temple staff. He did not get to offer up sacrifices or prayers, he did not officiate any ceremonies or minister to the king, he was just a gatekeeper. In spite of the lowly position of gatekeeper Phinehas son of Eleazar received the commendation that the Lord was with him.

What is a "gatekeeper?" A gatekeeper did a lot of the menial task; such as cleaning up, locking doors, lighting lamps, sweeping floors, that is what today's gatekeepers do, we are ushers, nursery workers, building trustees, church janitors, and parking lot attendants. Even though our service is a meager one in the eyes of men it matters not to the Ruler of the Universe, He may still be with us.

Phineas must have been in tune with God. He must have had an ear to God's heartbeat, and meditated on God's laws and ways. No doubt he considered God his in decisions and made choices that were right by God's standard. He was careful to not do whatever offend God and thereby shut God out.

Phineas stood outside the place of worship and held the door for others, yet he must have been inside in his heart. God does not come uninvited and Phineas maybe had a daily attitude of inviting God in. Perhaps opening the door for others to enter for worship was a model that he himself should have an open heart and invite God in. Perhaps in simple faith, Phineas just asked God to be with him.

Wouldn't it be wonderful to have people say the Lord is with you?  May we all aspire to be like Phinehas.  Let's turn away from that which shut God out and keep open the door for the Lord to be with us.

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(c) Adron