Volume: 832 October 18, 2021
Theme: The Indwelling Spirit of God
The Indwelling Holy Spirit
“For a day in thy courts is better than a thousand. I had rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness.” Psalm 84:10
At the time of Psalm 84, there were still tabernacles ( perhaps “tabernacles” was plural because, as one tabernacle was in disrepair, it was repaired or replaced. It could have also referred to the places of reflection built during the Feast of the Tabernacles). The temple must have existed, and perhaps it was being constructed as it had become a home (Psalm 84:3) for nesting sparrows.
For the Jews, the Tabernacle or Temple was where they met God. Those places were where He visited His people. It was also where Israel could be physically closer to God. Because of the nearness of their God, it was a special place.
The writer declares it was a friendly place (Psalm 84 — “amiable”). He was overwhelmed (Psalm 84:2) to be where God had been and where His commandments were obeyed. He envied the sparrows that built their nest amongst the structures and lived near God. He even felt those dedicated to service for the Lord and dwelt amongst (Psalm 84:4) the buildings were also fortunate. The Psalm writer realized it was a blessed place (Psalm 84:4-7).
Today, we do not have a physical building where God dwells. The Spirit of God lives in every believer. If we are saved, we are the Temple of the living God, and we should be as excited and encouraged as was the writer of Psalm 84 when he was in the Temple.
“Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? 17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.” I Cor. 3:16-17
“And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. 17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, 18 And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.” II Cor. 6:16-18 Also: Ephesians 2:21-22, Hebrews 3:6, I Peter 2:5.
Think about it for a minute! Selah! The Holy Spirit of God lives inside of you, Christian. He loves you so much that He does not want to live far away from you. He has chosen to live inside of you!
With that closeness of God should come special excitement, as the Psalm writer experienced. However, with the nearness of our God, we should make sure our “Temple” is swept clean of dirty sin that God hates. It is good to be so close to God, but it comes with an awesome responsibility to be far from sin and obedient to what a Holy God expects of us.
“Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.” I Peter 1:16
Keep the Temple Clean
I had waited a long time to spend the weekend with my friend. Finally, the time had arrived. After being dropped off by my mother, with a suitcase and sleeping bag in hand, I was ready for the games to begin!
Up the steps, my buddy guided me to where I was to sleep. As the door creaked open, I was aghast at the sleeping quarters where I was to spend the next couple of nights. Clutter, mess, and filth would also be my bedfellows if I were to spend the night in that bedroom.
Dirty, tattered curtains blocked most of the light filtering through the windows. I wondered if they had ever been washed since they were installed.
Strips of wallpaper curled off the wall, exposing its paste that clusters of roaches were feasting upon. Spider webs laced across most of the corners and crevices. Clothes lay where they fell after they were removed. I was not sure, but I was positive I saw a dirty sock move slightly across the dusty, stained rug under its power. A smell of armpits, sweat, and filth permeated from unwashed clothes and bedding. It was not a place that I would relish spending the night.
As politely as I could manage, I complained, “I really want to spend the weekend with you. We could have such a good time together, but to be honest with you, um, this room is too filthy for me to even sleep in. I would not be comfortable here.”
My host surveyed his room and agreed with a nod that it was a mess.
“If I am to stay here, we’ve got to clean it up,” I suggested.
He was agreeable, and soon we were both working together to clean his room. Curtains, clothing, and bedding were washed more than once. Pests were sprayed and removed. Windows were washed. Walls were wiped. Floors were vacuumed and scrubbed.
After much hard work, the room was spotless. It even smelled clean and fresh. It was now a room where I could comfortably sleep.
When a person gets saved, that person becomes the dwelling place of the Holy Spirit. He becomes a living “temple” where the Spirit of God indwells.
“Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? ”I Corinthians 3:16
“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?” I Corinthians 6:19
As I and others would not be comfortable in such a filthy environment as was my friend’s room, so the Holy Spirit is not comfortable with His dwelling place in many lives. The spiritual uncleanliness that displeases Him and stifles His working in our lives is our sin.
When a person is first saved, the voice of the Holy Spirit whispers to his heart to work on eliminating sin. For each person, the Holy Spirit’s directions to clean up his “temple” are different. It may be lying or a drinking problem that the Holy Spirit urges the child of God first to eliminate for the Spirit to be comfortable enough to work in his life. For others, it may be the sin of adultery, deceitfulness, cheating, or gossiping that He demands to be stricken from the “temple” of the Living Spirit.
“And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.” II Corinthians 6:16
“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.” Romans 12:1
Too many disregard, disobey, or ignore the convicting voice of the Holy Spirit to remove sin from their lives. In doing so, they grieve the Holy Spirit of God. Not doing as He commands is the same as telling him, “No!”. He does not leave, but He becomes silent. That is why so many people that were saved never do much or are used by God. The Holy Spirit insisted they clean up their “temple,” and they refused to do so. A dirty “temple” will never bring honor to God, nor will it be used by God.
“Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God.” Romans 6:13
All that are saved have many sins in their lives that need to be cleaned out. The Holy Spirit is so gracious that He does not demand they all be cleaned up at once. One by one, He will point them out and help us clean up where only He knows the “filth” is hiding.
Is there an area in your life that God’s Spirit is urging you to clean up? You will never be perfect and sin-free, but you can be a cleaner “temple” that can bring honor and glory to God.
“I believe the holier a man becomes, the more he mourns over the unholiness that remains in him.” — Spurgeon
Reasons Why the Believer Should be Holy
Edited from 500 Bible Readings, Marsh
- Because of who God is.
“The LORD is righteous in all his ways, and holy in all his works.” Psalm 145:17
“Speak unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say unto them, Ye shall be holy: for I the LORD your God am holy.” Lev. 19:2
- Because He commands it: Lev. 19:2.
- Because of His relationship with us.
“Sanctify yourselves therefore, and be ye holy: for I am the LORD your God.” Lev. 20:7
- Because of His choice of us.
“And ye shall be holy unto me: for I the LORD am holy, and have severed you from other people, that ye should be mine.” Lev. 20:26
- Because of our relationship with Him.
“They shall be holy unto their God, and not profane the name of their God: for the offerings of the LORD made by fire, and the bread of their God, they do offer: therefore they shall be holy.” Lev. 21:6
“Holiness is not the way to Christ. Christ is the way to holiness.” — Spurgeon