Summary: A brief look at our bodies, the temple of God's Holy Spirit, and the need to take care of our spiritual, physical, and mental health.
God’s Imperfect Home
“All things are lawful for me, but all things are not helpful. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any. Foods for the stomach and the stomach for foods, but God will destroy both it and them. Now the body is not for sexual immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. And God both raised up the Lord and will also raise us up by His power. Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ and make them members of a harlot? Certainly not! Or do you not know that he who is joined to a harlot is one body with her? For “the two,” He says, “shall become one flesh.” But he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with Him. Flee sexual immorality. Every sin that a man does is outside the body, but he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body. 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? For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s.”
- 1 Corinthians 6:12-20 (NKJV)
This morning we will begin the first in our ‘Keys for Christian Living’ series. Today we will look at the physical nature of the Christian, namely the human body. In reading through the book of Corinthians, which coincidentally is the quintessential book on Christian living, I came to our scripture text today. In it Paul reminds us that our physical body is home to God’s Holy Spirit and that we have been ‘bought at a price’, that being the death of Christ Jesus. Knowing the bodies importance as the vessel of His Spirit, it behooves the Christian to treat it right and nurture it correctly in order to accomplish the plan of God not only in our lives but in relation to our calling as Christians to ‘go forth’.
God, who before the creation of the universe, lived outside of space and time, and who at a given point spoke into existence the world and all that live within it, has throughout the history of human existence spoken to us and lived among us in different ways; first in the Garden of Eden where we learn in Genesis that He walked with Adam and Eve in the cool of the day. Later, after their fall from grace we see God inhabit the tabernacle where He would manifest His glory so that the Israelites would believe on Him. And now as we are in the season of Christ’s birth we are remind of the book of Hebrews that tells us “God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds; who being the brightness of His glory and the express image of His person, and upholding all things by the word of His power, when He had by Himself purged our sins, sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, having become so much better than the angels…” And lastly we are reminded, as we have reiterated over the last few weeks, that it is the Son of God that promised to us a ‘comforter’ after He returned to the Father. John writes the words of Jesus: “But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me…” That comforter which Jesus speaks is the Holy Spirit which He promises to give to us (remember Acts 2:38-40) which in turn would live within us.
It is here we MUST understand that prophecy of God through Ezekiel that says “I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them.” Paul reminds us over and over that we “have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” Why do we need to fully understand that God’s Holy Spirit, the very Spirit of the risen Christ, lives within us? Well, that brings us to our scripture today.
The key questions of the text today guide us in understanding the importance of cultivating our whole being; mind, body, and spirit for Gods purpose. Those questions are: “Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? … 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?” There are three keys to understanding our text today which, once contemplated and examined, will help us to understand our own bodies and its importance to the kingdom of God and I hope will also encourage us to take a little better care of our ‘whole’ person.