“Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you?” (1 Cor. 6:19, ESV)
This weekend, I heard the Holy Spirit speak to my heart the words from 1 Corinthians 3:17 that I have boldfaced above. The sense emanating from His heart was not aggression nor a threat, but rather a fiery, zealous love for His house. That is, fiery, zealous love for my body, and for your body. We are His temple.
When you lean in to listen, can you sense it too? From His heart flows a fierce protectiveness for the place He has chosen to dwell. “If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy him.”
He picked your physical frame as the habitation where He earnestly desired to take up residence. He moved in the day you gave yourself to Him. He says, on the authority of the shed blood of Jesus, that He has made your body holy. Every cell that makes up your organism; every bone; every tissue, every line; every curve; every part of your form – all of it is holy. Holy. God’s temple is holy.
Your body – to His eyes, to His heart – is an achingly, overwhelmingly exquisite expression of His creativity. He sees the majestic work of His hands when He gazes on you. Everything He makes is inexpressibly good. His gaze does not settle on the scars, nor on the effects of aging. His eyes penetrate past all of that and He sees His original creation design of you – the everlasting one. It takes His breath away.
Yes, our bodies are mortal. Yes, if the Lord tarries, they will return to the dust. However, when He resurrects them again, they will still be recognizably us. Just as the disciples knew Jesus in His resurrected body, so we will be identifiable in ours. Of course, our resurrected bodies will be indescribably glorious, with no trace of weakness, deformity, or flaw. But they will still be the beautiful original shape He dreamed up an eternity ago.
He loves your body. He loves it so much that He is filled with anticipation of enjoying its splendor forever. When He made you, He did not throw you together casually. For all of eternity past, He dreamed of how He would knit you together in your mother’s womb. He knew that He was crafting one of His most important masterpieces: one that He would rejoice in for all of eternity to come. Your body is eternal.
And it is already glorious. It was made in His very own image. You bear His likeness in every fiber of your being. As such, He is furiously passionate about the place He has chosen as His home. He recoils when anyone speaks against it.
He asks you… invites you… beckons you… urges you… to love it too.
Have you thought of your flesh and bones as holy? When you read that your body is an eternal masterpiece, what is your heart’s response?