God is my sanctuary Am I open to be His
1 Corinthians 3:16-23
Don’t you know that you are the temple of God and the Spirit dwells in you?
As He died on the cross for our sins, Jesus tore the veil in the temple in two, top to bottom, totally exposing the Holy of Holies for our access (Matt. 27:50-51). Now, Jesus didn’t jump off the cross, run into the temple and rip the veil. As He was dying on the cross every droplet of blood was cleansing all who receive Him from our unrighteousness, our iniquities, our sin, giving us that access.
Almost everything in the “Law” is purged by blood and there is no forgiveness for sin without the shedding of blood (Heb. 9:22). Consider Adam and Eve. They violated God’s trust by eating the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil (Gen. 3:1-24) so God cast them out of the Garden of Eden. However, Father made coats of skins to clothe them (Gen. 3:21). Think about it. For God to need to clothe them, Adam and Eve were naked in the Garden (Gen. 3:11). God had to make clothes to cover them, to hide their nakedness. So what did their nakedness represent? Initially, their innocence in God for they didn’t realize they didn’t have any clothes on. Because of their sin, they realized that they were exposed before the Lord! So God shed the blood of some animals to obtain the skins to “cover” His children. Their nakedness (GR 6172) represented their sin and the skins represented God’s covering of that sin, but the blood (of animals) had to be shed for that to happen. Ring any bells? Jesus shed His blood on the cross, once and for all, to cover our sins. No longer was the blood of animal required, but a greater covering was provided!
The Holy of Holies is where God met with only the high priest, once a year, so the priest could pray for forgiveness for the people’s sin. The veil maintained a separation between God and the rest of Israel (the world) so they had a ‘closed’ relationship with Father. They could not commune directly with Him but had to go through the priest. But Jesus tore that veil so we all could regain an ‘open’ relationship with Father through Jesus! Before the ‘fall’, Adam and Eve had an ‘open relationship’ with Father. That means each of us, personally, now at any time, are capable of communing with the Creator of all things. Amen?
We are a royal priesthood (1 Peter 2:9). Before, only the chief priest could enter the Holy of holies (Heb. 9:6-8). And even then, only after a cleansing (Lev. 16:1-34). Jesus became the first of many brothers (Rom. 8:29-31) and we are His brothers. Jesus is called the King of kings and Lord of lords (1 Tim.5:13-15). And we are royalty through Christ Jesus who is also our high priest (Heb. 4:14-16) and He has given us access to the Holy of Holies.
If any man defiles the temple of God, God shall destroy him for God’s temple is holy and you are God’s temple.
Ooooh! As God’s temple (the Holy Ghost living in our heart), through Jesus, we ae holy. We need to take our relationship seriously and abide in God’s will. Jesus says “If you love Me, keep My commandments (John 14:15). Remember, the five foolish virgins were refused entry into the bridegroom’s house because they did not take their relationship seriously and were not prepared when he came (Matt. 25:1-13).
Don’t let any man deceive himself. If any of you seem to be wise in this world let him become a fool, that he may become wise.
For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. It’s written that He takes the wise in their own craftiness.
Again, the Lord knows that the thoughts of the wise are vain.
Look at the world. Man keeps making discoveries which he foolishly proclaims disproves God’s existence. When, in fact, he explains just how wonderful God’s work actually is. Man, in his own mind, thinks that he’s getting pretty smart, but all his knowledge draws him farther away from the Lord. The beginning of wisdom is what? Knowing and respecting the Creator of all things (Prov. 9:10). If God does not exist, there is no responsibility to Father. So all that man has done is to ‘justify’ his own rebellion to God. These discoveries soothe man’s ego – “Look how smart I am! I’ve got it all figured out!” I’m only responsible to myself or at best, the community around me. This was the problem Lucifer (Satan) had as he thought he ‘was all that’ and thought he could replace God (Isa. 14:12-19, Rev. 12:7-17)).
So don’t let any man glory in the things of man. All things are yours.
Consider the temptations Satan laid upon Jesus (Matt. 4:8-10). Satan tempted the body of Jesus with food, then His soul (thought and emotions) with how Father operates and finally His heart – whom did Jesus really love and whom does He obey? Jesus is the ‘living’ Word of God (John 1:1-14). God spoke all things into existence for there was nothing until He started creating (Gen. 1:1-31). Count the “God saids”. There are 10! Ten represents divine order. In short, Jesus is that divine order come into this world in the flesh – Emmanuel = God is with us (Matt. 1:20-23). With the third temptation in Matthew four, Satan tried to convince Jesus that he could give Him all the kingdoms of the world! But the world was created through Jesus! They were already His! And because we are adopted into the family of God (Rom. 8:15, 9:26, Gal.3:26) they are also ours!
Whether Paul, Apollos or Peter, of the world, life or death, things present or yet to come, all things are yours.
Speaking to the children of God. No man, nothing of this world, nothing living nor dead, anything around us today nor promises of things to come can give us what we don’t already have through Christ Jesus. Father provides all things that we need and He even provides our desires (Phil. 4:19, Psalm 37:4) as we line up (obedience) with His Word.
You are Christ’s and Christ is God’s.
Through our profession of faith (salvation) we belong to Jesus Christ (Eph. 2:12-18) and Jesus is the Father’s (John 14:11). So through Christ Jesus, we are God’s so all things are already ours John 17:16-23)!
So (hopefully) having a little better handle on our relationship with Father -
So just what is the sanctuary?
According to Webster, a sanctuary (in short) is a place set aside for and by God. A place of communion, of protection, of refuge, (it represents) the Holy of Holies.
Two Hebrew words used are: miqdash (H4720) which is an asylum, a chapel, a hallowed place, a holy place; and qodesh (H6944) which adds holiness and saint to that definition.
One Greek word means sanctuary, hagion (G39) meaning holiest of all places.
All three words contain holy which means ‘holy one’ or ‘saint’ (H6918).
The Greek word hagios (G40) is translated consecrated or holy. Consecrate means to sanctify or set apart. Sanctify (Webster) means to set apart.
Do we get the drift that a sanctuary is where we can be set apart from everything else and be close to Father. That’s why the veil was torn, so we could enter into His presence!
We are the temple of God because we have allowed Jesus into our heart and therein the Holy Ghost resides. The Holy Ghost connects us with Father through the blood of Christ. We have direct access to Father because Jesus tore that veil in two.
Our sanctuary is where and when we can be alone with Father, in a quiet place where there are no distractions. And when we enter our sanctuary, as with the Holy of Holies, Father is there waiting for us. To talk with us. To love us.
We gain strength when we pray with other Christians and/or they pray for or with us (Eccl. 4:11-12), we develop a closeness with them and the Father. We live for Father through Jesus for He is always with us (Heb. 13:5). If the eternal God is with us, who can stand against us (Rom. 8:31)? As we love Jesus, we will also come to love our brothers, for if we don’t, something’s amiss (1 John 4:20-21). Bluntly, we are liars! Love our brothers as we love ourselves ((Matt. 22:37-40). As we love ourselves, people will see that love (1 Tim. 4:12) as the fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 4:22-23) manifests in our lives.
Coming into our sanctuary involves loving for God is love (1 John 4:8).
As I am writing this down, two songs are playing over and over in my head: Sanctuary (Randy Rothwell) and Holy Water (Tasha Cobbs Leonard).
We know that Father, through Jesus, is our sanctuary. A place where we can go, setting all else aside, and commune with Him.
To commune is to communicate which is to talk with, relay ideas, etc. It is a two-way street. When we commune, we talk AND we listen. If you will, we are in the process of building a relationship. Discovering the other person as well as sharing our deep thoughts with Father. That means getting up close and personal! That’s why the veil was torn – so we can get up close and personal with our Creator!
We are the living temple of the living God and on this earth, we should be a place where He can come commune with us – without distraction. It should be a place where we can open up our heart and our soul to Him without fear. God may reprimand us, but He will also comfort and encourage us to press on in this life.
God is love and He encourages us to approach Him in love.
We enter His heart, God IS our sanctuary. Does Father enter our heart? Are we His sanctuary?