The detailed design and construction of the tabernacle and the temple in the Old Testament were all about displaying the amazing glory of God. Consider the words of David in 1 Chronicles 22:5:
The house that is to be built for the LORD must be exceedingly magnificent, of fame and glory throughout all the lands.
When the temple was finished, we’re told that the glory of the LORD filled the LORD’s house visibly. (2 Chr 7:2)
The temple, as the focus of God’s glory, was significant to the Israelites. God knew this. In preparing for the coming of Jesus Christ, God spoke through Haggai, saying that the glory of this present house will be greater than the glory of the former house (2:9). And that it is through this house (Christ) that peace will come.
Christ used this symbolism in speaking of His death and resurrection when He told the Pharisees that they could destroy the temple, and in three days He would raise it up again (John 2:19). The temple, of course, was His body, the exact representation of God (Heb 1:3).
Thousands of years later God’s glory is still meant to be seen in and through the place He dwells. Since the resurrection and ascension of Jesus, and the coming of the Holy Spirit, that dwelling place is every believer. Our bodies are now the temples where God, through the Holy Spirit, lives and breathes and exerts his will.
We are His workmanship. He has created us in Christ Jesus for good works. (Eph. 2:10) We are a spiritual house being built up as a holy priesthood (1 Peter 2:5). He has clothed us with righteousness and salvation (Isa 61:10).
If God was concerned how a building built by human hands reflected His glory, how much more is He concerned with how we, His personal dwelling place, reflect His glory?
This Christmas let’s “prepare him room.” What needs to be restored, or removed in your life so that the glory of God, through the Holy Spirit, can be resident, unhindered in the earthly tabernacle of your heart?
I confess my fear of disappointment holds me back from embracing his presence fully, and especially from connecting my heart with other believers in unity.
We love the church because we love Jesus who fills the church with himself, the glory of God. Is God’s glory visible in your life, attitude, worship, and your relationships with fellow believers?
This Christmas season, in this chaotic world, people are looking for peace on earth, goodwill to men. It begins with the glory of God alive in us.