I’ve recently watched the movie, “Seven Years in Tibet.” It is the true story of Heinrich Harrer, an Austrian climber who spends much of the war in Tibet in the holy city of Lhasa. There he meets the 14th Dalai Lama who is still a young boy at the time. At one stage the mother of the Dalai Lama explains to him the protocol of being in the presence of such a holy and revered personage. His attitude has to be one of bowed head and folded hands. He can speak if spoken to but not initiate conversation. If he is seated, his head must always to be lower than that of the Dalai Lama. He cannot touch him under any circumstances.
There is usually some kind of protocol for visiting monarchs or heads of state.
Imagine the protocol required to visit the King of Kings and Lord of Lords! The Old Testament gives us a hint of this. Only the High Priest was ever allowed to go into the Holy of Holies and then only once a year and only after making a blood sacrifice for his own as well as the people’s sins.
“… when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit. At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. (Matthew 27:50-51a NIV).
The separation between God and man has been done away with from God’s side through the blood sacrifice of Jesus.
“Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” (Hebrews 4:16NIV)
Not only can we come confidently into God’s presence, we can approach Him as our Father. We can know His love and love Him in return.
The protocol has changed, but only for God’s children. In Revelation we see how a great multitude, that no one can count, and all the the angels, fall on their faces before God’s throne and worship him. (Revelation 7:9-12). The heavenly protocol still exists.
Father God, because I know You love me and I can call you Father, I sometimes forget how powerful and majestic You are. May I never take my relationship with You lightly or fail to give You the glory due to Your name. Amen.