December 13 – Today’s Readings – 2Chronicles 4-6 and Proverbs 13
Read the following four short passages and follow the theme:
2 Chronicles 6:18 “But will God really dwell on earth with men? The heavens, even the highest heavens, cannot contain you. How much less this temple I have built!”
Matthew 1:20-23 “But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, ‘Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.’ All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: ‘The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel’ —which means, ‘God with us.”
Revelation 21:3 “And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ‘Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God.”
Colossians 1:26-27 “the mystery that has been kept hidden for ages and generations, but is now disclosed to the saints. To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.”
The distinguishing mark of Christians is not that we have “a god” – or that we “worship” – or that we recognize a certain “code of ethics”. All religious people and a lot of “good” folks have this. No, we are distinguished because OUR GOD lives IN US! The miracle of Christ’s coming, sacrifice and resurrection is that God might live in us and that human beings would become His Temple.
There is no other way for us – Jesus became a sacrifice for us so that we might become a living sacrifice for Him. Christ in us is what makes us children of God. Christ in us is what makes us “saints” – holy unto the Lord. What separates us from all other peoples on earth is that we have an intimate spiritual union with God Almighty. This affects every aspect of our lives – we were bought with a price – we belong to Him as His dwelling place. The only possible outcome to this awesome truth is that we should glorify God in our bodies. Did you notice the great detail Solomon went to when he built the temple? He never left a single thing there that was “unclean”. Everything was carefully worked on so that this place could be “God’s House”. He placed great emphasis on things being right. You are no doubt seeing where this analogy ends. This life of ours needs to be watched over so that “unclean” things are not allowed in. This is not a difficult task however because the resident manager of the temple, God Himself – The Holy Spirit, is in constant communication with us – telling us how to keep ourselves pure and untainted by the world. Our only job is to listen to Him and do what He says!
1. Tell of a time that the Holy Spirit told you to clean something up in your life because you were His Temple.
2. Give an example of a New Testament character who deliberately kept God’s dwelling place cleaned up.