Thursday, March 7, 2024

Orange Moon Thursday, March 7, 2024 "Temples"

The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…

(As many of you know, one branch of our ministry involves conducting services in nursing facilities.  We begin our 22nd year of this blessed privilege this week, which remind me of this, a repeat from 2018). 


"Believers in the Lord Jesus are not merely human beings, but rather human beings inhabited by the indwelling Spirit of God."



      It is a blessed thing to remember God's presence with ourselves.  It is also a privilege and responsibility to affirm His presence in the hearts and lives of our fellow believers in Christ.

    "I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine for you all making request with joy, for your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now; being confident of this very thing, that He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ" (Philippians 1:3-6).

    Many years ago, I looked out on a congregation at a local retirement community where we conduct services.  Most of the folks sat in wheelchairs, and some were clearly not in good physical health.  A thought, however, occurred to me regarding those in the service who trusted the Lord Jesus: "I look upon temples of the living God."  The contemplation overwhelmed me then, as it does now.  Believers in Christ are not merely human beings, but rather human beings inhabited by the indwelling Spirit of God.  Our human imperfections seem to belie such a wonder, and we do not always speak, act, or relate to each other as if Christ dwells in us.  He does, however, and we must remember and affirm "the good work" of such grace in every believer, appearances notwithstanding.

    Such a perspective changes much in our view of each other.  We do not and cannot ignore the fact of our humanity, with both its wonders and its weaknesses.  However, we also seek to remember the presence of Divinity in brothers and sisters.  Frequently in Paul's epistles, he acknowledges and affirms the promise of the Presence, including the Corinthians who were carnal in their walk, but nevertheless alive in Christ: "I thank my God always on your behalf, for the grace of God which is given you by Jesus Christ, that in everything ye are enriched by Him" (I Corinthians 1:4-5).  In fact, when Paul begins to supply the remedy for the Corinthians' carnality, his first ray of correcting light shines upon God's indwelling presence: "Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?" (I Corinthians 3:16). We do well to follow the Apostle's example in our perspective of fellow believers.  Greater love, respect, and mutual edification ensues as we affirm our brothers and sisters as the spiritual dwellingplace of the living God.

    I will never forget the moment of seeing through the human to the presence of the Divine, to temples of the living God. The remembrance influences me to this day and this moment as I rejoice in a life lived with brothers and sisters, including yourselves, who serve as lamps of the Light that dwells in the human sanctuaries we are.  The promise of the Presence includes every believer.  Remembrance and affirmation of Christ in each other goes far in enabling our love for one another, and for the Father who dwells in and among His Christ-birthed "whole family of Heaven and earth" (Ephesians 3:15).

"I will dwell in them and walk in them."

(II Corinthians 6:16)

"Of Him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption, that according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord."

(I Corithians 1:30-31)

Weekly Memory Verse

   Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth He any man.

(James 1:13)


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