I am reading an article concerning Jewish (rabbinic) thought on the possibility of incarnation. The author suggests that a rabbinic form of prayer, kawwanah, implies that if God is capable of being ‘imaged’ in prayer in His shekhinah glory, then He is capable of incarnation. But in the midst of all of this he spends a good bit of time discussing the direction of prayer, and how the Holy of Holies is to be prayed towards because it houses the glory-cloud of God, enthroned between the cherubim. He says,
Prayers are to be directed to…the cosmic navel, the Holy of Holies in the Temple of Jerusalem.
But when you consider what Christ tells us about prayer it blows all of this rabbinic nuancing out of the water. The true believers will worship the Father in Spirit and truth–not towards Jerusalem, not towards Samaria–but in Spirit. Similarly, we are taught that the Church in Christ is the ‘naos’–the inner-chamber of the temple–to the Holy Spirit. We do not pray to a location because we are the location of God’s glorious presence through the Spirit (1 Cor. 3:16-17; 6:19; 2 Cor. 6:16; Eph. 2:21). In this sense, those joined to Jesus by faith are the ‘cosmic navel’, the belly-button of the universe. Since Jesus has sent us the Spirit, and intercedes with the Father in the heavenly ‘temple’, we have access to God that those outside of Christ cannot begin to fathom.