The Blessed Person and Work of God the Holy Spirit
Prepared for March 4, 2011
3. The Significance of God’s Temple
The temple is where God dwelt and manifested His awesome presence in a most unique way.
a. The Tabernacle
“Then a cloud covered the tent of the congregation, and the ____________ of the LORD ___________ the tabernacle. And Moses was not able to enter into the tent of the congregation, because the cloud abode thereon, and the _____________ of the LORD _____________ the tabernacle” (Exodus 40:34-35).
God manifested His presence in the tabernacle. God was in the midst of His people, and they all knew it. They could see the cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night (the Shekinah glory). The ” Shekinah glory” refers to the visible manifestation of God’s presence. God was in His sanctuary. God was in His holy place.
b. Solomon’s Temple
“And it came to pass, when the priests were come out of the holy place, that the _____________ ( Shekinah glory) filled the house of the LORD, so that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud: for the _____________ of the LORD had _______________ the house of the LORD” (1 Kings 8:10-11).
The tabernacle was a moveable temple; it could go from one place to the next place. Solomon’s temple was a permanent temple in Jerusalem which would never be moved. It was one of the most spectacular buildings ever erected. God again manifested His presence from the most holy place in the temple.
“I have surely built thee an house to ____________ in, a settled place for thee to abide in for ever” (1 Kings 8:13). God dwelt in Solomon’s temple, but many years later the glory of God departed from the temple because of Israel’s disobedience and idolatry. Ezekiel chapter 10 tells the sad account of God’s glory departing from the temple (see especially verses 4 and 18; see also Ezekiel 11:22-23).
c. The Rebuilt Temple
Solomon’s magnificent temple was destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon, in 586 B.C. Later a remnant of Jews returned to the land and rebuilt the temple under the Jewish governor Zerubbabel and the Jewish high priest Joshua (the prophets Haggai and Zechariah also had their ministry at this time). The account of the rebuilding of this temple is found in Ezra, chapters one to six.
This second temple was not nearly as magnificent as Solomon’s temple, and some of the old men, who still remembered Solomon’s temple, W__________ as they saw the foundation of Zerubbabel’s temple; they knew it would be an inferior building in many ways (Ezra 3:12).
Unlike the tabernacle and Solomon’s temple, we are never told that the rebuilt temple was filled with God’s glory. The glory did not come to this temple until Jesus Christ came to the temple in the first century.
Malachi the prophet predicted that the Lord would suddenly come to His _________________ ( Malachi 3:1). The Lord Jesus was full of glory (John 1:14), but most of the time when Jesus walked this earth His glory was veiled.
Three of His disciples were privileged to see a full display of His glory on the mount of transfiguration (Matthew 17:1-9).
The Lord Jesus was rejected as Israel’s King and crucified outside of the gates of Jerusalem on Calvary’s cross. Four decades later, in 70 A.D., the rebuilt temple (which had been enlarged and greatly beautified by Herod the Great–John 2:20), was destroyed by the Roman army.
Since that time, there has been no Jewish temple on earth. But as we shall see, God does have a temple on earth today, which is indwelt by His Spirit.
d. The Tribulation Temple
At some future time the Jews will again build a temple in their land and will once again offer animal sacrifices which have not been offered since the first century. In Daniel 9:27 we learn about a seven year period which will begin with a treaty that the Antichrist will make with Israel for seven years.
In the middle of this seven year period, the Antichrist will break this treaty and will put an end to the sacrifices and offerings (Daniel 9:27).
At this time the Antichrist (“the man of sin,” “the man of lawlessness,” the first “beast” of Revelation 13) will desecrate the temple by exalting himself and claiming to be God and forcing people to worship him (see Matthew 24:15; 2 Thessalonians 2:3-12, Revelation chapter 13). There is no indication in Scripture that God’s glory will ever fill this tribulation temple.
e. The Millennium Temple
During the thousand year kingdom of Christ, there will be a magnificent temple described in great detail in Ezekiel chapters 40-48.
In Ezekiel 43:5 we learn that “the G_________________ of the LORD _______________ the house (the temple).” God manifested His presence in this temple in a very special way. God would dwell in the midst of His people (Ezekiel 43:7)!
f. Will There be a Temple in the Eternal State?
Concerning the eternal city, the new Jerusalem, we read, “And I saw ____ ________________ in it; for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the _________________ of it” (Revelation 21:22).
God’s glory will be there in its fullest manifestation (Rev. 21:23), so that there will be no need of a temple. Compare Revelation 21:3 (God dwelling with His people).
g. God’s Temple on Earth Today
In Matthew 16:18 the Lord Jesus predicted that He would build a special building: “…and upon this rock I will _____________ my ___________________, and the gates of hell (Hades) shall not prevail against it.”
When Jesus spoke these words, the building of this church was yet future. He said, “I will build (future tense).” He did not say, “I am building.” This building project would begin on the day of Pentecost.
In 1 Peter 2:5 we learn that God’s building would not be made out of brick or concrete, but made from “lively S_______________” or “living stones.”
It would not be a physical house, but a “S_______________________ house” (1 Peter 2:5).
Believers in Christ will be the building blocks of this amazing structure!
This building is also mentioned in Ephesians 2:19-22.
In verse 21 it is called a building, but it is also called a “H____________ T________________ in the Lord.”
God inhabits this temple through the S___________________ (verse 22).
The Holy God is in His Holy Temple.
In 1 Timothy 3:15 the church of the living God is called “the H__________________ of __________.” It is God’s house because He lives in it and dwells in it.
There are two key passages which speak of the Holy Spirit indwelling God’s temple which is the church:
1) 1 Corinthians 3:16—”Know ye not that _____ are the _________________ of God, and that the _________________ of God _____________________ in you.” The words “ye” and “you” are both plural, referring to all the Corinthian believers. God dwelt in His believers, in His church, in all the believers.
2) 1 Corinthians 6:19—”What? Know ye not that your ___________ is the temple of the ____________ ________________ who is ______ you, whom ye have of (from) God, and ye are not your own.” In this passage we learn that the individual body of every believer is God’s temple, and the Holy Spirit dwells within every child of God.
If someone should argue that not all believers are indwelt by the Spirit, he should be reminded that even the Corinthians, who had serious problems with carnality (1 Cor. 3:1-4), were told, in the two key passages cited in the previous paragraph, that the Holy Spirit lived in them.
If a person does not have the Holy Spirit, then he is “none of His” (Romans 8:9). This means if he does not have the Holy Spirit then he does not belong to Christ.
That is, he is not a Christian. Everyone who has received Christ by faith (John 1:12), has the Holy Spirit also. “But this spoke he of the __________________ , whom they that ______________ on him should ________________; for the Holy _______________ was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified” (John 7:39).
The Holy Spirit would be given later, on the Day of Pentecost. John 7:39 teaches that those who believe on Christ will receive the Holy Spirit.
4. What does the Indwelling of the Spirit Mean to Me Personally?
First, just the very thought itself ought to transform me. God is in me! The living God lives in me! God dwells in me. I am God’s home and God’s temple! What an awesome thought! Every day I should remember this fact: “Christ ______________ in me” ( Galatians 2:20).
Second, this fact ought to encourage me to live the Christian life. The Christian life is a supernatural life. It is an impossible life to live. It is an impossible thing to live as a saint, to walk in holiness, to work worthy of my high calling and to be filled with the Spirit.
I need not get discouraged. A supernatural Person lives within me to make the impossible possible! I cannot, but He can! I am unable, but He is able. I have no might or ability, but my eyes are upon Him! I can live the Christian life because of that P________________ that works in me ( Eph. 3:20).
Third, this fact makes it possible for my life to be a blessing to others. Read John 7:38-39 carefully. God’s desire is that my life might overflow to others. Out of my innermost being shall flow rivers of ____________ _____________ (John 7:38)!
The Holy Spirit is in me to make this possible. I can be a refreshing believer to all who know me, overflowing with His life.
Fourth, this fact will help us to enjoy true Christian unity: “Endeavoring (making every effort) to keep the unity of the ______________ in the bond of peace” ( Eph. 4:3).
When I realize that the same Spirit who lives in me also lives in each and every child of God, I begin to appreciate the unity that I have with others who are born again. When I am with a fellow believer, I can enjoy a oneness with that person because we both have the Holy Spirit living in us.
Fifth, this fact ought to produce Holy living. What is the leading characteristic of God’s house (Psalm 93:5)? ______________________ The Holy One lives in me, and I ought to be holy as He is holy (compare 1 Peter 1:16). I must not do anything that will G_____________________ the Holy One that lives in me (Ephesians 4:30).
Sixth, it ought to change my conduct in the church. The word “Bethel” means “house of God.” In Genesis 28, Jacob was awed by the presence of God: “Surely the LORD is in this ________________ and I knew it not. And he was afraid, and said, How dreadful (awesome) is this place! This is none other but the _____________ of ________” (Genesis 28:16 -17). Jacob named the place “Bethel” or “house of God.” In 1 Timothy 3:15 I learn that the church is the house of God; yet how often do I forget that God is in His people? This truth ought to make a huge difference in how I conduct myself.
Seventh, the unsaved ought to know that God is in the midst of His church. Read carefully 1 Corinthians 14:24-25. What impressed this unsaved person the most about the church (verse 25)? ___________________________________________________________ When believers are well fed, then they will be healthy; when they are healthy, the life of Christ will be manifested and God will make Himself known!
Eighth, this fact ought to give us victory over Satan because “greater is he that is _____ _______, than he that is in the world (Satan)” (1 John 4:4).