By Andrew Knight
When we bought our first house a few years ago, we went from renting to owning. Technically the bank owns a big chunk of it, but just go with me here. We went from caring a little about taking care of our apartment to caring A LOT about taking care of our house. When something belongs to us, especially our home, we want it treated well. We want it taken care of. That's not only true of us. That's true of God as well.
Paul tells the Believers in Corinth four times that they are temples of God:
"Do you not know that you are a temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you" (1 Corinthians 3:16)?
"If any man destroys the temple of God, God will destroy him, for the temple of God is holy, and that is what you are" (1 Corinthians 3:17).
"Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own" (1 Corinthians 6:19)?
"Or what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; just as God said, 'I will dwell in them and walk among them and I will be their God, and they shall be my people...' " (2 Corinthians 6:16).
If we have placed our faith in Christ, then we are temples of God. God dwells within us. We are his home. We are where He lives.
God doesn't just move in to become a tenant. He's not satisfied with just being a quiet resident. He's the property owner. He's the landlord. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 says, "Or do you know that...you are not your own? You have been bought at a price: therefore glorify God in your body." What was the price paid? Jesus' suffering and death became the currency that bought you and me. Jesus took upon Himself our sin and our shame. When we trusted Christ as our Savior, we signed over the ownership rights to our bodies . . . and our lives.
God's great gamble is making His dwelling place among people with free will. Because He lives within us, we are literally His hands and His feet. We represent Him to others. He has given us the freedom to trash or glorify His reputation. The world often interprets God's character based on what they see in us.
Yet, we don't need to get too hyped up over this. We're not bearing the total responsibility of God's reputation based solely on our own resources. God is within us and offers to guide our decision-making process. By faith, we trust Him to communicate His life and His will through our voice, our hands, and our feet.
And one more thing that's really cool about being the temple of God: It changes the way we view others and ourselves and causes our appraised value to skyrocket. That's something to be happy about!
Where does God live? If you're a Believer, He lives in you. So how is the housekeeping coming along?