We Are His Temple
You’ve probably read the passage of scripture that says our bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit. But have you really thought about the implications of it? The Message Bible has an interesting take on this.
You realize, don’t you, that you are the temple of God, and God himself is present in you? No one will get by with vandalizing God’s temple, you can be sure of that. God’s temple is sacred—and you, remember, are the temple. 1 Corinthians 3:16-17 (MSG)
Strong words!!! But what does it mean to vandalize God’s temple??? The word “vandalize” means to deliberately damage or destroy someone else’s property. Is that that we do when we all manner of “food,” not bothering to learn whether it is good for us or not, or when we allow ourselves to become overweight neglecting to discipline ourselves or to keep ourselves fit? The argument could be made that we do not do these things deliberately, but doesn’t the Bible also say that to know to do right and not do it is a sin (James 4:17)?
The word in the KJV version of the Bible is “defile.” If you look at the Greek word, “Phtheiro,” it means to corrupt or to destroy. It further goes in to say:
in the opinion of the Jews, the temple was corrupted or “destroyed” when anyone defiled or in the slightest degree damaged anything in it, or if its guardians neglected their duties.
When you look at it this way–the slightest degree damaged? If the guardians neglected their duties? What does that say about us??? God thought highly of the bodies that He designed for us. Speaking through the psalmist He said that we are “fearfully and wonderfully made.”
With Privilege Comes Responsibilty
We must understand that we have been given the awesome privilege of being God’s temple, and with privilege comes responsibility. Think about this… If you were given a brand new Mercedes on a lease for a year and you:
Never washed the car
Drove it recklessly and damaged it
Neglected scheduled maintenance
Or maybe you never drove it at all!
Do you think you would be held accountable for the damage when you returned the car to the dealer? Our bodies are so much more valuable than a car!!! Let’s consider carefully the way we care for God’s property. And let’s make every effort to honor His temple as His temple–a priceless vessel in which He dwells.