Do you not know that you yourselves are God’s temple
The debate to reopen churches has become the latest front in the coronavirus culture wars. In many Christian denominations, assembling physically for worship is critical to the faith. Many houses of worship initially adapted to the pandemic by holding virtual or drive-through services. But for the faithful, nothing can replicate the act of physically coming together at the end of the week.
Another consequence of suspending in-person services is that in many cases, churches are running low on funds. Part of that is because of the economic effects that the pandemic has had on church members.
Some pastors who are pushing ahead with reopening are placing their faith in God. “The same God that told us not to stop coming together to worship Him during these times of increased illness and persecution is the same One who does not want us to be afraid,” Lowman wrote in a letter to his congregation, “The Bible tells us to lay hands on the sick and they shall recover and will continue to do that without the fear of the spread of any virus,” he said at the time.
As we prepare to reopen the economy, this is a debate that has rocked our country and rafts of measures have been formulated on how churches will be operating. Going through them, I asked myself, will the minority churches manage with the measures? I doubt. This is going to see “natural death” of some churches. Is it a trap? Let me not be pessimistic.
I wish to look at this debate in a very different way, a perspective that I am sure will draw a lot of criticism. I will start by reading John 4:21-23, the Bible says, “21 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, believe me, the hour cometh, when ye shall neither in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father. 22 Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews. 23 But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.”
John 4:5-26, describes one of the most famous moments in Jesus’ earthly ministry. Here, He converses with a Samaritan woman. This particular woman is not only an “unclean” Samaritan, but an outcast among her own people. She attempts to avoid Jesus’ teachings, giving flippant and sarcastic answers. Despite that, and despite knowing all about her sin, Jesus encourages her with the love of God. This breaks through her hard heart; as a result, many others are brought to meet Christ. The disciples are also taught a valuable lesson about the purpose of their mission.
Instead of Jesus taking the bait, Jesus simply deflects the question. The issue is simply not important as part of the conversation they are having. Instead of chasing a false trail, Jesus continues to explain the gospel. The woman’s question revolves around the proper location for worship. Jews only worshipped in the temple. Samaritans only worshipped on Mount Gerizim. Jesus explains that, once His mission is complete, that worship will not be confined to any one place on earth. This would have been just been as controversial to the Jews, who placed great importance in the physical temple.
The hour that was coming was that pivotal point in history, when time and eternity met and heaven’s hosts must have silenced their praises in atonishment. The time was fast approaching when there would be a new and perfect sacrifice, a new living Temple made without hands a new birth; a new creation, a new dispensation when those that worship God would worship Him in spirit and in truth. Jesus knew that when He was lifted up all earthly temples, buildings and mountain tops would become inconsequential for men would worship the Father in spirit and in truth.
A moment was arriving when the old covenant would be set a side and a new covenant would be cut, by means of the precious blood of the perfect Lamb of God Who takes away the sin of the world.
This leads into an important truth about proper Christian worship: it requires spirit and truth. Paul says in 1 Corinthians 3:15-16, If it is burned up, he will suffer loss. He himself will be saved, but only as if through the flames. Do you not know that you yourselves are God’s temple, and that God’s Spirit dwells in you? If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy him; for God’s temple is holy, and you are that temple.…
I don’t know what you think but what I think is we are the Generation that has fulfilled this scripture. Let’s Pray: Heavenly Father a beautiful sight of the must be endless wisdom, boundless love and awesome purity. One day we will stand before you and Lord I have absolutely no doubt will be silent with everything about you will transcend anything we could say. Thank you anyone who will take time to read this article. If anyone is running in the opposite direction stop them with your loving hands and turn them around. Lord I ask you for your understanding and wisdom in this time we are living, no one has ever lived in such a time, but Lord we need you, thank you for your son Jesus Christ and for saving us, in Jesus name I pray, Amen. God Bless.
Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.”