One of the descriptions, (or pictures) God uses in His Narrative to describe His Church is that of a building. More specifically, it is a temple that is being built.
This of course ties into the enormously important Narrative threads from the Old Covenant with its Tabernacle, and later Temple, in Jerusalem. When Jesus came to the earth and died and rose again, the Old Covenant with its priesthood, sacrifices and temple, was fulfilled … something the book of Hebrews makes clear. Now the Spirit of God is living in His people.... read more
In the first of Paul’s letters to the believers in the southern Greek city of Corinth, he challenges the church in Corinth to live in light of the reality that they are God’s temple (1 Corinthians 3:10-17). A few years later he uses the image of “temple” again when he writes to the believers in Ephesus, famous for its temple to the goddess Artemis (Ephesians 2:20-22).
He says that all believers are God’s house, a holy temple for the Lord and a dwelling place where God lives by His Spirit. Picture a builder carefully choosing, shaping and then placing individual blocks into a building, Paul says that we are each being added into God’s temple like that.
When we think about God’s people by using biblical motifs like temple, we must be careful not to think of God as just some kind of Architect, not really involved in the building project. During our upcoming webinar and workshop we will look at other pictures to help us understand His relationship with His Church, including Bride, Body and Head.