Read 1 Corinthians 6:18-20
Q: So how do we relate the situation in Ezekiel with our own experience?
A: Just as the Shekinah glory dwelt in the temple, so the Holy Spirit dwells in us.
Q: What is the affect of being a temple containing God’s holiness when we allow sin and idolatry to co-exist within as well?
A: Judgment, discontent, etc., etc. We’re not to tolerate sin in our lives but to “flee immorality”, which is the most common element in all idolatry and false worship.
Q: Does this mean that if a believer continually commits iniquity and wickedness –even idolatry–that the Holy Spirit might depart?
A: In believers who indulge in sin, the Spirit is “quenched” and “grieved” to the degree that for all intent and purposes He has “departed”. Therefore the believer has no protection from God and therefore we see verses like 1 Corinthians 5:5: “I have decided to deliver such a one to Satan for the destruction of his flesh, so that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.” The principle is the same as in what happened to the nation Israel and the final judgment to come.
Q: Does God give us warnings today through prophets as He did back then to the Jews?
A: Yes. Through His Word, pastors, Christian leaders, members of the body and, in the case of children, through their parents. It’s the spirit of prophecy at work in the church, warning against unrighteousness and encouraging righteousness.
Q: In regard to the nation of Israel, where did God’s cleansing begin?
A: It started with the sanctuary. So it will begin with the church in the End Times.
Point: Jesus and all the Apostles spend more time warning about deception and apostasy in the church as a sign and problem in the End Times far more than any other thing. In their teachings as well, the principle is that judgment begins with the church before moving on to the rest of the world.
Application: What parts of your life, or choices you’ve made, have been coming to mind throughout this study? What are the idols and false gods you need to throw out of your own temple? What do you need to do to make your own sanctuary devoted to the One True God and Him only? If you were completely honest, how closely do you identify to those that were marked by God as having as much concern for the behavior of those claiming to be Christians but not actually living like one? Are you a Christian in name only, thinking God does not see how you live the rest of the week?