Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Temple Talk

We talked yesterday about God seeming to “show up.” Sometimes we like that. Other times it’s dang frustrating when it seems He doesn’t. Today, we’ll chat about another way to remember that God…is.

I want to show you something interesting about Daniel. If you flip back over to chapter 1:2 it reads, “And the Lord delivered Jehoiakim king of Judah into his hand, along with some of the articles from the temple of God. These he carried off to the temple of his god in Babylonia and put in the treasure house of his god.”

Now, back to 5:2,4 “While Belshazzar was drinking his wine, he gave orders to bring in the gold and silver goblets that Nebby had taken from the temple in Jerusalem, so that the king and his nobles, his wives and his concubines might drink from them…As they drank the wine, they praised the gods of gold and silver, of bronze, iron, wood and stone.”

Why do you think Daniel mentions the temple in the way he does?

We don’t have temples and things that he held in such high esteem, but for the people of Israel the temple was the central point of their faith. The temple was where God dwelt. So, for it to be ransacked, raped, and purged was a death blow to all they held dear. He couldn’t help but mention it.

Not only was the temple a treasure to the people of God, the temple was a treasure to God.

It was the place He would bear His name. It started as the tabernacle with the Israelites and then God commanded David to build a temple. (see 1 Kings 6-9).

I Kings 9:3 says this concerning the temple: “My eyes and my heart will always be there.”

He will always keep watch over it and He will love it as His holy place.

What does that have to do with us? Well, according to I Corinthians 6:19 we are now the temple of God. If you are a follower of Christ, His Spirit lives in you. Just as the Spirit of God dwelt in the actual, temporal, physical temple, so does He in you. This is now central to our faith.

If we continue with this spiritual concept found in Scripture, I believe we have the Biblical right to claim “temple” rights and responsibilities. We also claim the promise found in I Kings 9:3 “My eyes and my heart will always be there.”

What a promise, indeed.

Consider this. If God was violently protective of His temple, how much more will He be for those who now house His Spirit?

And, if the people of Israel were consumed with the care and perfection of the temple, how much more should we be consumed with the care of not only our spirit in Christ, but to the extension of the actual, temporal temple…our physical body.

In a few months I plan on doing an entire series devoted to us being God’s temple. That’s why I was a bit vague and didn’t elaborate too much here on the temple. Until then, let your mind consider these things we have talked about.

God will make His name famous in His temple. Let us do Him the honor and “host” Him well.

1 comment:

Robin Meadows said...

I'm so glad you shared this. Isn't it exciting how the OT is a reflection of the New? Understanding things like this shows how LIVING God's Word really is!!