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Feb 1999 - Editorial

When Abraham believed in the Lord (Gen. 15:6), he received the assurance that God purposed to give him the land where he then was, to inherit it, and this was confirmed when God made mention of a fourth generation who would return there. The mountain in the land of Moriah, where not only the faith of Abraham but also the obedience of Isaac were tested, witnessed their unswerving belief in the eventual fulfilment of God's promise.

Just as Abraham and Isaac were sojourners in that land, so also was Jacob, believing that their heirs would one day take possession. Thus Joseph gave commandment concerning his bones, taking an oath of the children of Israel, and saying, 'God will surely visit you' (Gen. 50:25). Moses took account of this in Exodus 19, for Joseph had known that the destiny of these sojourners was not in Egypt. Their confidence was in the Living God. The carrying of the bones of Joseph signified faith in the fulfilment of God's promise. Likewise those who daily take up the Cross of Christ bear about in their body the dying of Jesus. Their testimony becomes a savour of life unto life, and proclaims that their sights are set on Immanuel's land.

Jacob had a dream of God's dwelling, and while that dwelling was revealed as in the land of his sojourning, yet it had its connexion with heaven. The wilderness experience of Israel would give place to the land of promise, and the further revelation of a dwelling place for God amongst His people in a sanctuary to be recognized as the place of the Name. The Lord Jesus Himself spoke of 'the true worshippers' who would 'worship the Father in spirit and truth' (John 4:23). This promise is made perfect in those of this dispensation, who in obedience of faith, enter into a spiritual inheritance and a sanctuary not made with hands.

The blessing of trust in the Lord and of service in His house, is the theme of the Meditation on Psalm 84, written by our dear departed brother Reg Jones, some weeks before his home-call. Truly he was seeking the things that are above where Christ is. It makes the writings which we do have from his pen all the more precious, and the example of his life is God-honouring.

This month the theme of Lovers of God's House is continued in the article headed 'A Patriarch's Glimpse' by David Webster, deriving lessons regarding revelation, witness, and worship from the experience of Jacob.

In the series of articles New Testament Churches of God George Prasher deals with the subject of The Jerusalem Prototype, exemplifying the divine pattern which would unfold as other souls were and are being reached, baptized and gathered in churches of God in testimony together.

FOCUS considers carefully the Promise Keepers' movement in North America from the point of view of disciples seeking to put into effect the 'whole counsel of God'.