June 04, 2021

Temples of the Holy Spirit

1 Corinthians 3:16-17; 6:19-20

Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God?

—  1 Corinthians 6:19

What does it mean that the Spirit of God is called the Holy Spirit? For one thing, he stands in contrast with evil spirits that draw us away from God, tempt us to sin, and influence us to be rebellious against God. But he is also called the Holy Spirit because he makes us holy.

The Bible talks not only about people who have no natural idea about the things of the Spirit, but also about people who follow after the sinful ­nature, the “desires of the flesh.” These are people who live completely opposite to the way God calls us to live. They act with sexual immorality, impurity, idolatry, hatred, divisiveness, jealousy, rage, selfish ambition, and so on (Galatians 5:19-20).

But the Holy Spirit fills us so that our physical bodies become temples of the Holy Spirit. We become holy, set apart, for the special use of God himself. This truth has many implications. Temples are for worship, so praise for God should always arise from our lives. As God’s temples, we are not our own but are called to be living sacrifices, holy and acceptable to God (Romans 12:1).

The church is the body of Christ, so it too is holy. Every believer in Christ is a part of that body and is a temple too. When we realize that the Holy Spirit has made us holy temples, we honor God with our bodies, and we honor all Christians as the body of Christ.

Holy Spirit, purify my thoughts; take charge of my body and my life so that I am holy in body, soul, and spirit. Amen.

About the author — Dean Deppe

Dean Deppe has been a pastor in inner-city, suburban, and rural ­churches. Currently he teaches New Testament theology at Calvin Theological Seminary. His courses include one on the parables of Jesus. He and his wife have four grown children.

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