The most important thing to a Jew in the Old Testament was the Temple of God
One of the most important things to a Jew in the Old Testament was clearly the Temple of God. That includes the Jews that lived in Jesus day, while they are written about in our New Testament, that time period was still under the Old Testament law. Christians know the that the New Testament didn’t start until the Holy Spirit fell on the followers of Jesus the Messiah on the day of Pentecost which is found in Acts 2.
Why did Jews so honor, respect and profoundly admire the Temple of God?
The Temple of God was the central part of Jewish life for much of Jewish history. Jews revered the Temple of God. They had respect for the Temple of God. They appreciated the temple of God. They admired the Temple of God. Their existence, their way of life, their very being was centered around the Temple of God. Wars were fought over the Temple of God. Jews from around the world would make annual pilgrimages to the Temple of God. Working in the Temple of God was one of the highest honors among Jews. So, what was so important about the Temple of God that Jews venerated the Temple of God, would go to war with nations over it, and would gladly give their lives to defend it? Simple, it was the place that housed the presence of God. Jews believed that the presence of God was in the temple. More specifically, the presence of God was because the Ark of the Covenant was housed there.
So what did you do with your temple today?
In the New Testament God no longer resides in temples made of stone.
The God that made the world and all things in it, who is the Lord of heavens and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands. —Acts 17:24 (GFS)
He resides in believers.
Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. —1 John 4:15 (GFS)
So the question for you is, “What did you do with your temple today.” Maybe better questions are, “Where did you take God today with your temple?” Or, “What did you and God look at today on the internet?” Do you revere, honor, and highly esteem your temple? Do you truly understand that God literally lives inside of you if you are a believer?
What does God say about how we are supposed to treat our temple where He lives?
The Apostle Paul addresses that very question in his writings. In Ephesians we are to:
“Have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather correct them. For it is shameful to even speak of the things which are done by them in secret. —Ephesians 5:11-12
In 2 Corinthians we are told:
Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with unrighteousness? And what communion does light have with darkness. —2 Corinthians 6:14 (GFS)
In 2 Corinthians Paul says:
And what agreement does Christ have with Belial (wicked or worthless)? Or what part does a believer have with an unbeliever. —2 Corinthians 6:15 (GFS)
In 2 Corinthians 6:16 Paul further states:
And what agreement does the temple of God have with idols? For you are the temple of the living God; as God has said, ‘I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.’ —2 Corinthians 6:16 (GFS)
And finally in 2 Corinthians 6:17 Paul says:
Therefore, ‘Come out from among them and be separate,’ says the Lord, ‘And touch no unclean thing, and I will receive you.'” —2 Corinthians 6:17 (GFS)
It appears that we, as temples of God, are supposed to avoid both worldy things and unsaved people, at least as much as possible. But what do I know? That can’t be true for today’s Christians, right? Just look around at Christianity, nobody does that, well, almost nobody does that. Here is a final verse to think about.
“Enter through the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many that go through it. Because narrow is the gate that leads to life, and few there be that find it.” —Matthew 7:13-14 (GFS)