ILLUS – Weird Body Facts
We are beginning a new teaching series today entitled…
His Temple/ My Body
The temple was a very special place in the Old Testament. God gave precise instructions about how it was to be constructed and furnished. It was the primary place where God revealed himself and talked to the priests. It also was the place where the priests and the people made various types of offerings to God. Basically, the temple was the place where God’s Spirit dwelt and interacted with the Israelites.
When Jesus came to earth, the bible says that he was filled with the Holy Spirit, and Jesus referred to his body as a temple.
Jesus answered them, “Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days.” 20 They replied, “It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and you are going to raise it in three days?” 21 But the temple he had spoken of was his body. 22 After he was raised from the dead, his disciples recalled what he had said. Then they believed the scripture and the words that Jesus had spoken.
In regard to the church, the bible says that we are the temple of the Holy Spirit. Peter speaks about the church being the temple of the Holy Spirit in 1 Peter 2:5, when he says,
…you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
What Peter is saying is that corporately, every believer together makes up a spiritual house that exists of a holy priesthood who offer spiritual sacrifices. Paul shares this same thought to the Ephesian church in Ephesians 2:19-22, where he says,
Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. 21 In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. 22 And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.
When speaking to the Corinthian church, the Apostle Paul takes this thought a step further. He says that not only are we, corporately, a spiritual temple for God, but individually, each one who belongs to Jesus is a temple of the Holy Spirit.
In 1 Corinthians 6:19-20, Paul says,
Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore, honor God with your body.
What does it mean that we are a temple of the Holy Spirit?
When you and I surrendered our lives to Jesus, the bible teaches us that the Holy Spirit came to live inside of us. Since the Holy Spirit resides in us, we become his temple. Just like the Spirit of God dwelt in the Temple building that Solomon built, so now the Spirit of God lives in you and me.
If God meant simply to convey the idea that the Spirit lives within the believer, He could well have used words such as “home,” “house,” or “residence.” But by choosing the word “temple” to describe the Spirit’s dwelling, God conveys the idea that our bodies are the shrine, or the sacred place, in which the Spirit not only lives, but is worshiped, revered, and honored. When the Bible says you are a temple of the Holy Spirit, it is not just saying that God’s Spirit lives in you, but on top of that, its God is saying that you are a holy place.
When somebody asked Jesus what the greatest commandment was in Mark 12:30-31, Jesus said,
Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.
Did you know that man is three-fold being?
What does that mean, Pastor Lou? Well, that means that every person has a spirit, soul and a body. God created us this way.
In Genesis 2:7 says, “Then the Lord God formed a man from the dust of the ground (that’s his body) and breathed into his nostrils the spirit of life, and the man became a living soul.” So, the combining of the body and the spirit that God breathed into man, formed man’s soul. God designed us this way and he cares about each part of you.
1 Thess 5:23 says,
May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Graphic - Man is Three-Fold
Body- Flesh, Blood, and Bones
Soul- Intellect, Will, and Emotions, the soul is what makes you you! It is your gifts, talents, likes, and dislikes. It is your passions. Your soul is you!
Spirit- Conscience, Intuition, and your place of communion with God. It is in our spirits that God speaks to us when we are in his presence.
Here is the thing: any one of these parts can become sick. Just like your body gets sick when you don’t take care of yourself, so also, your mind can get sick, when you dwell on unhealthy thoughts. If you don’t know the Lord, your spirit man is dead. When we give our lives to God, our spirit comes alive within us, but it can get sick too, if we don’t stay connected to God.
Each of these affects the others for instance, someone who has sickness in their soul, might begin abusing their body. Have you ever gotten sick in your body, and felt depressed in your soul? These three parts of man all impact each other.
They are so intertwined that we can’t separate them – especially the soul and spirit. In fact, Hebrews 4:12 states that only the Word of God is powerful enough to separate the soul and spirit. Ecclesiastes 12:7 says that when we die the body will return to the dust from where it came, and the spirit will return to God who gave it. So, what happens to your soul? That is the part of you that will exist forever with God or away from God.
What are some of the implications of this truth?
Many people believe, “It’s my body, and I can treat it any way I like.” But it is not your body! It was given to you by God, and you are called to be a steward or manger over it. Our bodies are given to us to bring glory to God.
The implication of this truth is that we are to honor God with our bodies since they “are not our own”. We have been bought with a price. And that price was not gold or silver or other perishable things by which we were purchased; it was with the precious, blood of Jesus.
Therefore, if we are God’s temple, we should do our best, as stewards of God’s resources, to take care of these temples. That means you need to take good care of yourself — spiritually, physically, and mentally.
I am accountable to God for the way I control my body under His authority.
1 Corinthians 9:27, Paul said,
I discipline my body and bring it into subjection.
Stewarding your body requires discipline. Interestingly, we are disciples. Disciples should know how to have self-discipline.
ILLUS – Vacation 220 lbs – now 207.
In Romans 12:1, Paul said,
I beseech you…that you present your bodies a living sacrifice.
What I must decide is whether or not I will agree with my Lord and Master that my body will indeed be his temple.
There is a purpose behind everything God does, and the creation of the human body is no different. A major pursuit for a believer is to grow in the righteous character of God. By surrendering ourselves as a living sacrifice to God, we are achieving that purpose.
Therefore, how we behave, think and speak, and what we let into the temple through our eyes and ears becomes critically important as well, for every thought, word and deed is in the Spirit’s view because he lives in us!
Have you given your body to God? Most of us, when we think of surrendering our lives to God, focus on giving him our soul, so that we can live forever with him. But God wants your bodies too. He wants to connect with you in your spirit to give you peace and joy in your soul, so that you can live your live in the flesh so that even your body brings glory to God.
Theme Graphic - It might be your body, but it is God’s temple!!