I work at my desktop with the children at my feet. A makeshift area rug made of white butcher paper lines the floor where the baby, crayon in hand, imitates her big sister. Sister focuses on the finishing touches of the house she designed. The catchy children’s song, Wheels of the Bus, blasts from the Toddler Station on Pandora Radio.
Six year old Sookie unveils her masterpiece and I ooh and awe at the sketch. “It’s a daisy house!” I exclaim. “I love the colors. I wonder what the inside looks like.” Without hesitating, Sookie describes each room.
“There are five rooms and they are all different colors. One is Mint Chip, another Strawberry. There is a Vanilla room, and a Cookies & Cream room and the last room is Rocky Road. You have to wear a sweater inside because it is very cold.”
“A house made of ice cream,” I reply. “It sounds heavenly!”
I dug into my Bible readings that morning preparing for the Women’s Bible Study Group and gave God an imaginary “high five.” To my surprise, starting in the 40th chapter of Ezekiel, lay the Master’s blueprint of the foundation of the way the temple is to be built!
Build it this way.
Line by line, He lays out the specs. I envision the awesome outer court, the east, north, and south gates leading to the inner court. I contemplate the rooms used for the animal sacrifices, the rooms for the priests and amaze myself of Ezekiel’s vision of the temple with its detailed carvings of the cherubim and palm trees.
That morning our Bible teacher did not only focus on the beauty of the temple. She picked up on something that still leaves me awestruck when I think of it.
The key requirement for the temple of God is holiness!
“This is the law of the house;
Upon the top of the mountain,
The whole limit thereof round about
Shall be most holy.
Behold, this is the law of the house.
I remember my last visit to Israel and the rainy day in Jerusalem. I will never forget the gazebo on the Temple Mount shielding a handful of us students from the raindrops while we sang “We are Standing on Holy Ground!”
Aside from the Old Testament Temple design, the New Testament believer knows that our body is a temple of God where the Holy Spirit dwells!
Do you not know that you are a temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? If any man destroys the temple of God, God will destroy him, for the temple of God is holy, and that is what you are.
1 Cor. 3: 16-17
It gives me chills to think that you and I, as temples, house the Spirit of God and that we’ve been beautifully crafted by Him. Check out Psalm 139; we’ve been formed in detail by the living God!
And He calls us to be holy….as He is holy! I repeat, we are living temples and the main requirement of the temple is holiness.
I am sober thinking of my temple foundation. I ask myself if it’s firm and strong or is it just built on fluff like ice cream. The great thing about grace is that every new day is another chance to get back on the holiness scale and, hopefully, climb a little higher.