Acts 7:48-49 says:
48 “However, the Most High does not dwell in temples made with hands, as the prophet says:
49 ‘Heaven is My throne,
And earth is My footstool.
What house will you build for Me? says the Lord,
Or what is the place of My rest? (ref: Isaiah 66:1)(NKJV)
And in Acts 17:24 we find:
24 “God, who made the world and everything in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands. (NKJV)
Who, then, are we glorifying when we build huge, elaborate (expensive) churches? Are we not saying to the world, “Look at this magnificent building: are not WE special?”
The Earthly Temple
There is, however, an earthly temple, but we all too often ignore it and allow it to fall into disrepair.
1 Corinthians 6:19-20 says:
19 Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? 20 For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s. (NKJV)
There is a great push right now to promote the idea that each person’s body is their own and they can do whatever they want with it or to it. But is it?
For non-believers, that’s a moot point. If they deny the authority of the lease-holder, the terms of the lease agreement are irrelevant. The Bible does not apply to them and believers have no right to judge them by our standards. Jesus will do that in due time.
For believers, God’s Word is our rule-book. Our owner’s manual. It says the body we inhabit is not owned by us. It has been purchased by Jesus at great cost. It is on loan to us for our use, while we go about doing His work. We are expected to maintain it and not defile it with unsuitable uses.
Just as a congregation might build a fancy church building, we are to build a temple to God with our bodies.
How is your temple looking today? Is it being put to proper use, or is it being used as a warehouse? God isn’t impressed by the paint we may rub on it or the sparklies we hang off it. God is pleased when we maintain His temple and put it to proper and efficient use.