Last time, we talked about choosing our friends wisely and not partnering ourselves with unbelievers. But why are these things important? Why did God command us to keep ourselves separate and not allow the world into our personal lives?
Paul gives us the answer in the next few verses:
“What agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; as God said, ‘I will make my dwelling among them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Therefore go out from their midst, and be separate from them, says the Lord, and touch no unclean thing; then I will welcome you, and I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to me, says the Lord Almighty.’”
~II Corinthians 6:16-18
Stop. Go back and reread that passage. Did you catch the amazing truth?! We are the temple of the living God. The God of the universe, Maker of all things, the sovereign One has chosen to make His dwelling place within us! What a concept! If that doesn’t inspire and motivate you to keep yourself separate from the world, then I don’t know what will. So let’s take a closer look at what it means to be God’s temple.
During the Old Testament days, God dwelled among the Israelites in the tabernacle and later on in the temple. That was His home. Now, however, God no longer lives in a temple built by men but within our hearts. We are God’s house and His home. He dwells among us by living inside of us. Therefore, we must be careful what we allow into God’s home. We must make sure to protect and keep holy God’s house.
Imagine this: If God dwelt in a building today we’d probably surround the place with security guards and surveillance cameras to make sure that no unclean thing or unworthy person or object entered into His presence. We’d most likely clean the building multiple times each week to keep it spotless and perfect for the King of kings.
Likewise, we must guard our heart from the outside influences and pollutions of our ungodly world so that we—God’s house—may stay set apart and fit to be the dwelling place of the Maker of the universe. We must clean our heart through the confession and repentance of sin so that we may remain spotless and clean for the One who lives within us.
If we do this and remain faithful as holy and set apart dwellings for God, God gave us a promise. He assured us that, “then I will welcome you, and I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to me, says the Lord Almighty.” This is definitely what we want! We want to be God’s children and be welcomed by the Lord.
So let us remember that we are God’s home, and guard our hearts and live our lives worthy of this high calling, not allowing the world to pollute the dwelling place of our righteous King.
“Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you?”
~II Corinthians 3:16
“Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.”
~II Corinthians 6:19-20
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