The Inspiration, Wisdom, and Power to Build Something Permanent
God decreed all things that come to pass…from eternity. All things manifest in space and time by God’s providence. God is at work fulfilling His will to be done. In this, human history is the record of God’s unfolding drama; and by God’s prophetic Word, we know the climax to the story is pending — at a time known only to God.
As men build towers, kingdoms, and a name for themselves (Gen 11), another King, with His kingdom has been established. His reign rivals them all. Jesus Christ, the King of glory and King of kings (Ps 24; 1 Tim 6:15), is building His church (Mt 16:18). Called out from all the kingdoms of the world, the citizens of the kingdom of God are manifest in every generation by the powerful stirring of the Holy Spirit.
Christ’s church is the people of God, who are living stones in God’s temple building project (1 Cor 12:13; Eph 2:20–22). Each Spirit-indwelt stone has its unique place in the edifice being built in the midst of hostile peoples in the world. The reprobate haters of God and of Christ serve to create the tension that heightens the drama of God’s story (Rom 1:30; Jn 7:7). When God’s chosen people are weak in the world arrayed against us then He is strong to deliver, protect, inspire, empower, and defend His beloved builders/worshipers.
Following the Babylonian exile, it was God’s will to deliver the people (3 waves of return from exile between 536 and 520 B.C.), stirred by His Spirit into revival. God put it into His freed people to return to Jerusalem to re-build God’s house — the place of worship of Yahweh (520–516 B.C.). Solomon’s temple had been destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar (586 B.C.), who served God as the wicked destroyer, employed by Yahweh to judge His holy nation for their ungodliness and unrighteousness (Rom 1:18; Heb 12:4–11).
As judgment turned to deliverance the pilgrim’s objective was to return to obedience in service to and worship of Yahweh. Their inspiration was God’s Spirit working the will of God, eternally decreed from God’s good pleasure to be glorified in everything.
All things are from God (source) and they are worked by God (Ps 57:2; 138:8; Is 26:12; Phil 2:13). The end is for God’s intrinsic glory to be paired with His creatures ascribing all glory to Him…for great things He has done!
As the architect and builder of all things (Heb 3:4; 11:10), God’s blueprint is the perfect design to display His glorious attributes. Even the wicked and the day of evil will prove God to be glorious (Prv 16:4). On the dark backdrop of evil, the diamond of God’s eternal kingdom, His righteous reign, His just judgment, His temple building prowess, and His precision naming and numbering of His people shines like the sun.
God’s holy nation of royal priests, filled with Spirit of truth, delight in the place and presence of God to perform their acceptable sacrifices of prayer, preaching, and praise. Here is the design of God for His slaves to rejoice in their Maker, Redeemer, and Life-giver.
Wise worship is by God’s prescription. God presents meticulous instruction for His building project. In Christ, the Spirit, Christians fulfill the Old Testament types. Just as the Spirit revived the Israelites in Egypt and Babylon, so the Spirit of Christ makes alive those He empowers to perform the works prepared beforehand for each one to walk in (Is 26:12; Eph 2:10). God gifts each of His adopted children to execute His purposes in Christ Jesus (Rom 8:15, 23; Eph 3:11).
An altar is being built by the Spirit in the soul of God’s redeemed, regenerated slaves. Upon the foundation of the prophets and apostles (human writers of the Scriptures), with Christ as the cornerstone, a super-structure of faithful living stones is being pieced together. Without the inspiration, wisdom, and power of God — that is, apart from Christ no one can do anything of eternal, permanent value (Jn 15:5).
All aspects of the Old Testament tabernacle and respective temples must be present for proper and acceptable worship. Idols must be thrown down and destroyed so that one loves God with his or her whole heart, soul, mind, and strength. Christian worship must be compelled by the view to God’s love for the body of Christ, the Israel of God (Gal 6:16).
Jealous for the name of King Jesus and zealous for His church/temple/city must have right motive. It must be built in the power of His Spirit. In this way, despite the machinations of evil detractors, God’s builders labor in love and as unto the Lord. Evil men and deceitful women hinder the Lord’s laborers, causing division and depression to be overcome by faith in Him who began this good work and who promises to complete it with perfection (Phil 1:6; 1 Jn 5:4).
Despite delays in temple building (2 Pet 3:9), the Lord knows those who are His (2 Tim 2:19), and He causes all things to work together for them (Rom 8:28). All we need for a life of godliness is provided for us by God. These things come with His Word of promise that nothing will prevent those of faith from experiencing Christ’s victory by faith (2 Cor 2:14; 1 Jn 5:4).
When the wise builders are inspired and serve God in the power of Spirit, nothing will separate them from the love, purpose, and plan of God, who is able to make all grace abound toward us. Whereas Kings and nations serve God in His providence, our King extends abounding grace to His servant builders.
With the Spirit of worship in the altar of our hearts, and with the firm foundation of the Word of God, the temple of the Lord is being built and readied for its place in the city of God, New Jerusalem, and heavenly Zion. Gold, silver, and precious stones are the building materials of that place of eternal permanence, while the wood, hay, and stubble of this world will be burned up with the fervent heat of God’s testing/judgment (2 Pet 3:10–12).
My dear reader, examine yourself and determine whether you are a builder or a destroyer of the altar, the temple, and the city of God. May God be with you, in mercy and grace, to build His place for you to worship, and may you do so from this day forth and forever.
Spokane Valley, Washington
April 6, 2022