Your Body: God’s Gift

MEMORY SELECTION: “Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God?” —I Corinthians 6:19

SELECTED SCRIPTURE: I Corinthians 6:15-20

MUCH confusion has arisen in the minds of honest-hearted people in connection with the expression “Holy Ghost” as it appears in our Authorized English Bibles. The idea of “ghosts” was widely believed in during the Dark Ages. It is the generally accepted (but erroneous) tradition among many Christians that the “Godhead” is composed of three persons—Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. This is called the doctrine of the trinity.

The whole matter takes on greater significance and understanding, as well as clarifying the actual meaning of the words “Holy Ghost,” when the passage is read from one of the many Revised translations of the Bible. The memory text, when it is studied in the Emphatic Diaglott, reads as follows: “What! do you not know that your body is a temple of that holy Spirit in you, which you have from God? Besides, you are not your own.” The expression “Holy Spirit” is the proper thought. It is the gift from God to his people, to enable them to understand spiritual things pertaining to their spiritual calling during the present Gospel Age.

The thought of our bodies as a temple suggests the individual Christian’s own faith structure, which the apostle tells us is composed of gold, silver, and precious stones. This is in reference to the character-building that is necessary for us to grow up into Christ. That development seeks to exclude the wood, hay, and stubble of error and sin that have been passed along from generation to generation as a result of our first parents’ transgression.

The same thought may be applied to the various gatherings of God’s people; i.e., that each congregation is considered to be a temporary temple or abiding place of God in the world, as represented by the indwelling Holy Spirit. In a larger sense the combined number of brethren living at any particular time during the present age is representative of God’s temple. And in a still larger sense the total church called out of the world during the whole Gospel Age is the temple of the living God.

Each member of the body of Christ is, symbolically speaking, a living stone that is presently being prepared—through chiseling, polishing, and fitting—for a place in the glorious temple of God. When the entire church, all 144,000 members, will have been selected and glorified, then all will be brought together in the glorious millennial kingdom of Christ. That will be the center of blessing and instruction for all the families of the earth.

From the selected scriptural reading Paul says (vss. 15-17): “Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ, and make them the members of an harlot? God forbid. What? Know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? for two, saith He, shall be one flesh. But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.” The apostle was cautioning against uncleanness and points out the seriousness of the matter. When alerted to the desired spirit of oneness in the Lord, the child of God should always strive to draw closer to God in spirit and in truth.

The admonition is to cleanse ourselves from all unrighteousness and filthiness of the flesh. Our bodies are our temples, and we have this treasure of the kingdom in our earthen vessels. To the degree that we grow in likeness to the perfect standard which has been set before us, to that same degree we bring honor and glory to our loving Heavenly Father. Let us turn our attention again to the apostle’s words: “Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body. What? Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost [Holy Spirit] 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.”—vss. 18-20

We have been bought with Jesus’ own life and blood. We have also been granted the provisions of justification through the merit of his shed sacrifice, which was presented to the Heavenly Father on behalf of his body members during the present age of sacrifice.—Heb. 9:24

Dawn Bible Students Association
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