THE BIBLE'S DEFINITION OF CHURCH
PART VII

TEMPLE WORSHIP

Let's consider an important implication from our last definition. We have seen that the church, the body of Christ, is the temple of God today. One of the key features of a temple is worship.

". . . measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein." (Revelation 11:1).

This identity of the temple with worship is why Paul says:

"God . . . dwelleth not in temples made with hands; neither is worshipped with men's hands, as though He needed anything . . ." (Acts 17:24,25).

Now, a question comes to mind. Are you time and place oriented when it comes to worship? Do you need to go somewhere to worship God? Do you need to go somewhere, at a certain time?

Do you attend a Sunday morning "Worship Service"? And if you do, does this mean that you stand upon the ground of church truth delivered to us by Paul, or are you by your actions denying it?

Again, the question is a simple one: Are you time and place oriented in your worship?

Paul worshipped the Lord in the temple! But he believed what he taught about the temple. He believed that he was the Lord's temple! So, guess where Paul worshipped God?

"For we . . . worship God in the ________ . . ." (Philippians 3:3).

In this verse Paul tells us where we worship! Do you know what goes in the blank?

"For we . . . worship God in the spirit . . ." (Philippians 3:3).

In the spirit.

That's where we worship the Lord. This means that everyday, in every place, and in every action we have been called upon to enter into worship. After all, we are the temple of God, God lives in us, and we therefore are to worship God with and in every detail of our lives.

No wonder that Paul would make statements like:

"Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God" (I Corinthians 10:31)

"What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's" (I Corinthians 6:19,20).

"And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by Him" (Colossians 3:17).

And when Paul wrote "For we . . . worship God in the spirit . . ." he quickly followed that truth with a negative:

"For we . . . worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh" (Philippians 3:3).

Did you notice that there were two realms in that verse? "in the spirit" and "in the flesh." Two different ways of worship! And in the same verse, what stands between these two realms? "in Christ Jesus"!

If you go somewhere to worship the Lord, are you not in reality denying the truth of who you are in Christ Jesus? Are you not worshiping the Lord in the flesh, rather than in the spirit? Hasn't someone corrupted your mind "from the simplicity in Christ" (II Corinthians 11:3)?

Are you enjoying true temple worship? Or, just and man-made imitation?

Think on these things.

Clyde Pilkington

Gladstone, VA

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