If you’ve accepted Jesus as your Savior, you are now the temple of the Holy Spirit. God no longer resides in buildings as He did in the Old Testament, but He’s chosen to live within believers and has called us His temple. With our acceptance of becoming the temple of God, we must come to realize the seriousness of what it means to be a temple and to actually ‘house’ the Holy Spirit within us.
- “16 Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? 17 If anyone defiles the temple of God, God will destroy him. For the temple of God is holy, which temple you are.” 1 Corinthians 3: 16-17
- “4 For it is impossible, in the case of those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, and have shared in the Holy Spirit, 5 and have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the age to come, 6 and then have fallen away, to restore them again to repentance, since they are crucifying once again the Son of God to their own harm and holding him up to contempt.” Hebrews 6:4-6
Because God is holy, He cannot be in the presence of sin. Yes, we all do sin and Jesus’ blood covers that through our repentance and faith in Him; however, if we are in continued sin and rebellion against God’s Spirit, then we need to realize that there may come a time when God cannot put up with it anymore. What this exactly means is unclear, but He uses strong words in 1 Corinthians of destroying the temple if it is defiled and in Hebrews 6, He issues another warning about falling away from the truth.
Let’s look to the Old Testament prophet Ezekiel to see how God felt when His people defiled the temple, and remember that God’s character never changes.
“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.” Hebrews 13:8
- “5 Then He said to me [Ezekiel], “Son of man, lift your eyes now toward the north.” So I lifted my eyes toward the north, and there, north of the altar gate, was this image of jealousy in the entrance. 6 Furthermore He said to me, “Son of man, do you see what they are doing, the great abominations that the house of Israel commits here, to make Me go far away from My sanctuary? Now turn again, you will see greater abominations.” 7 So He brought me to the door of the court; and when I looked, there was a hole in the wall. 8 Then He said to me, “Son of man, dig into the wall”; and when I dug into the wall, there was a door. 9 And He said to me, “Go in, and see the wicked abominations which they are doing there.” 10 So I went in and saw, and there—every sort of creeping thing, abominable beasts, and all the idols of the house of Israel, portrayed all around on the walls. 11 And there stood before them seventy men of the elders of the house of Israel, and in their midst stood Jaazaniah the son of Shaphan. Each man had a censer in his hand, and a thick cloud of incense went up. 12 Then He said to me, “Son of man, have you seen what the elders of the house of Israel do in the dark, every man in the room of his idols? For they say, ‘The Lord does not see us, the Lord has forsaken the land.’” 13 And He said to me, “Turn again, and you will see greater abominations that they are doing.” 14 So He brought me to the door of the north gate of the Lord’s house; and to my dismay, women were sitting there weeping for Tammuz. 15 Then He said to me, “Have you seen this, O son of man? Turn again, you will see greater abominations than these.” 16 So He brought me into the inner court of the Lord’s house; and there, at the door of the temple of the Lord, between the porch and the altar, were about twenty-five men with their backs toward the temple of the Lord and their faces toward the east, and they were worshiping the sun toward the east. 17 And He said to me, “Have you seen this, O son of man? Is it a trivial thing to the house of Judah to commit the abominations which they commit here? For they have filled the land with violence; then they have returned to provoke Me to anger. Indeed they put the branch to their nose. 18 Therefore I also will act in fury. My eye will not spare nor will I have pity; and though they cry in My ears with a loud voice, I will not hear them.”” Ezekiel 8:5-18
- “4 And the Lord said to him, “Pass through the city, through Jerusalem, and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh and groan over all the abominations that are committed in it.” 5 And to the others he said in my hearing, “Pass through the city after him, and strike [those without the mark]. Your eye shall not spare, and you shall show no pity. ” Ezekiel 9:4-5
While we have verses in the New Testament that states that the Holy Spirit will never the leave the temple of the believer, we need to be on guard that we don’t defile our temple with things that are abominations to God, because we are defiling more than just our bodies and our minds, we are defiling the very presence of God.
- “19 Do not quench the Spirit. ” 1 Thessalonians 5:19
- “30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.” Ephesians 4:30
- “And whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come.” Matthew 12:32
- “but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, but is guilty of an eternal sin”” Mark 3:29
- “51 “You stiff-necked people, uncircumcised in heart and ears, you always resist the Holy Spirit. As your fathers did, so do you. ” Acts 7:51
Instead of bringing defilement to ourselves and to God, let us instead uphold the teachings of Paul in Ephesians:
17 Now this I say and testify in the Lord, that you must no longer walk as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their minds. 18 They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart. 19 They have become callous and have given themselves up to sensuality, greedy to practice every kind of impurity. 20 But that is not the way you learned Christ!— 21 assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus, 22 to put off your old self,[f] which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, 23 and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, 24 and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness. 25 Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another. 26 Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, 27 and give no opportunity to the devil. 28 Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need. 29 Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. 32 Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.” Ephesians 4:17-32
Thank you, God, for your gift of the Holy Spirit within us who guides us in the ways of righteousness. Help us to guard ourselves and stay pure so that we do not quench or grieve your Spirit, by the power of the name of Jesus. Amen
“By the Holy Spirit who dwells within us, guard the good deposit entrusted to you.” 2 Timothy 1:14