Do you not know that you are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? 1 Corinthians 3:16 NABRE
Paul challenges the thinking of the people about the temple. The temple in Jerusalem was seen as God’s dwelling place, it was being rebuilt by Herod and would reach its full magnificence in a few years. People would travel to the temple for festivals and feast, going to be with God to celebrate something special. Paul is claiming that the Christian community is the temple, they themselves are the place where the Holy Spirit dwells. Later in the letter Paul will refer to the individual as the temple, “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own?” (1 Corinthians 6:19) But here Paul is referring to the community. When we think of church we should think of the people not a building or location. By applying the meaning of “temple” to the Church, Paul indicates that the Christian assembly is a holy dwelling place where God resides and makes Himself accessible to His people, receive their worship and sacrifices, hears their prayers, and speaks through His ministers. We are members of the household of God, built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Jesus Christ as the capstone. Through Christ the whole thing is held together and grows into a sacred temple of the Lord. We are the spiritual house, a holy priesthood to offer spiritual sacrifice acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
God has no home except in us. When we gather we are the church, we come together to make up the body of Christ, who is the head of the church. But as individuals we are holding within us the Holy Spirit, dwelling and challenging us to be God for others. Others see God through us.
Do you reverence yourself as the temple of God? Are you a presence for others?As individuals we are holding within us the Holy Spirit, dwelling and challenging us to be God for others. Others see God through us. Click To Tweet
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