God’s precious promises – Day 8

Jesus’ promise to us

Significant dramatic encounters between God and man often took place on mountains and hills.

Moses received the Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai.

It was on a high mountain that Jesus was transfigured and Peter, James and John saw him glorified. There they heard God say: “This is my Son, whom I love, with him I am well pleased. Listen to him” (Matthew 17:5).

It was on the Mount of Olives when Jesus told his disciples they would all desert him that night. There under the olive trees in Gethsemane, he agonized in prayer, was betrayed and arrested.

It was on the small hill of Golgotha, “The Place of the Skull”, that our Lord, alone and deserted by those closest to him, gave his life for you and for me. He did so willingly and lovingly having lightened the darkest day in the history of the world for us, with a promise — the promise of the Holy Spirit which is our verse for today.

It did come with a precondition: “If you love me, keep my commands. And I will ask my Father …” It underlines the instruction God gave to Peter, James and John on the Mount of Transfiguration: “Listen to him.”

Churches and shrines had been erected on the mountains and hills where man has had close encounters with God. Such places are venerated as holy, but it is not the places that are holy but we, the people of God.

Jesus promises to those who follow him that the Holy Spirit will live with us and within us forever — that’s what makes us holy.

We are God’s temple holy and sacred in his sight. No matter what may befall us, God will be with us for all eternity.