The Body is a Temple of the Holy Spirit

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 (NIV) 
19 Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; 20 you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.

God the Father created our bodies; God the Son redeemed them and made them part of His body; and God the Spirit indwells our bodies and makes them the very temple of God. How can we defile God’s temple by using our bodies for immorality?

In Corinth was the temple to Aphrodite in which fornication was regarded as consecration instead of desecration. Prostitutes were there as priestesses of Aphrodite, to help men worship the goddess by fornication. Glorifying God with the body ran against the Greek thinking of many of Paul’s readers. “Bought” refers to redemption from slavery; here it is possible that Paul makes a wordplay on the price of freeing a slave prostitute. Our body is a temple as in 1 Corinthians 3:16 (NIV) which says:Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you?”

As Christians our bodies are not our own. They are the Lord’s, members of Christ, and temples of the Holy Spirit, who has been given by God to indwell us. So Paul calls for sexual purity not only because of the way sexual sin affects the body, but because the body it affects is not even the believer’s own. John MacArthur wrote, “To commit sexual sin in a church auditorium, disgusting as that would be, would be no worse than committing the sin anywhere else.” Offense is made within God’s temple wherever and whenever sexual immorality is committed by believers. Every act of fornication, every act of adultery by Christians, is committed in God’s temple: their own bodies. “For we are the temple of the living God” 2 Corinthians 6:16 (NIV) So God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit are all involved in what we do with our bodies. If we break God’s laws, then we must pay the penalty (Romans 1:24–27).

We no longer belong to ourselves because we have been bought with a price. For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.” 1 Peter 1:18-19 (NIV)

We must remember that the grace of God can change the sinner’s life. “And such were some of you” (1 Corinthians. 6:11). It is wonderful how faith in Christ makes a sinner into a “new creation” (2 Corinthians. 5:17, 21). And it is important that we live like those who are a part of God’s new creation. We are not our own. We belong to the Father who made us, the Son who redeemed us, and the Spirit who indwells us. 

As a Christian do you honor your body as a temple of the Holy Spirit? During your time of prayer and fasting have you realized that you need to treat your body as a temple?

Pray now that you will see your body as the temple of the Holy Spirit. Christians’ bodies are God’s temple, and a temple is for worship. Our bodies, therefore, have one supreme purpose: to glorify God. This is a call to live so as to bring honor to the person of God, who alone is worthy of our obedience and adoration.

2) Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives’ tales; rather, train yourself to be godly. 8 For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.” Timothy 4:7-8 (NIV)

Pray for our pastors and leaders in faithfulness as a steward:

Of their time

Of  their talents

Of their treasure

Of the truth

Of their relationships

Further Reading:

MacArthur, John: 1 Corinthians

Wiersbe, Warren W.: The Bible Exposition Commentary.

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