Stoking the ire

Remember the ire of the Jews when Jesus spoke of destroying the temple, and they thought he was referring to the physical temple in Jerusalem?

Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you? If someone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy him. For God’s temple is holy, which is what you are.
1 Corinthians 3.16-17 NET

One of the most powerful arguments that Paul makes against division in the Corinthian church (the subject he deals with here) is this: To divide the church, as they were doing, is to destroy God’s temple.

The temple is the place where God dwells. Destroy his house? This should have caused, as it did in the Jews, a profound indignation in the Corinthians. But it should have provoked an even greater reaction in them, for it dealt not with a physical building, but with their own selves, a profound, personal, and relational dwelling.

The verse above expresses the purpose of the gospel, the reason for the Bible, the motive behind the Cross, the objective of the divine project: God in the midst of man, the Lord’s presence with us.

There is no greater gift than his presence, and no worse catastrophe, than its destruction in the church.

Father, may your presence among us be cultivated, by obedience to the Lord Jesus Christ and by the preservation of unity according to your plan.

Hold this thought: The presence of God is the greatest good.

What do you think?