No, Your Body Is Not a Temple of the Holy Spirit

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I recently wrote a post about how one of the most quoted Bible verses, Jeremiah 29:11, is regularly misapplied by Christians. The main point of my article is that we misapply this passage – and many passages of Scripture – because we approach it with an individualistic lens rather than an ancient, collective lens. The former is more in tune with a modern, western perspective; the latter is more in line with the Bible.

One detail that helped me to see this more collective perspective within Scripture is by realizing that, 9 out 10 times, the word you in the Bible is plural, not singular. We just don’t easily catch this in our English translations.

And this is why I would make the case found in the title of this post: “No, Your Body Is Not a Temple of the Holy Spirit.” Continue reading

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In the Beginning There Was A Temple?

I have undertaken a bit of reading around the book of Genesis these days, or mainly the early chapters of Genesis. The current popular discussions on early Genesis has created a whole hubbub of tension and debate amongst evangelical Christians of all types. And there is no doubt these opening chapters are important as an introduction to the biblical revelation of our God. If you want to understand any story, you need to start at the ‘once upon a time’, or ‘in the beginning’. And that’s just what Genesis provides.

In a lot of discussion around Genesis 1, a particular view has been brought forth surrounding the idea that this particular chapter describes the Hebrew God, Yahweh, as building his special temple. Some would advance this notion because of its somewhat parallel approach with other origins accounts of the ancient near eastern world where other peoples similarly described their god or gods building a temple. And, so, as God looked to make himself known to his people within such an ancient context, he accommodated, or utilised a particular method of the day, in communicating his revelation about the primal beginnings of the creation. As God always does, he ‘comes down’ into a particular contextual situation (see Ex 3:8) Continue reading