As I write this piece (8:40am, Sunday morning) I am sitting in my office and the Custodian is busy cleaning the Sanctuary. At least that is what some say as she goes about her work. The little patch of Earth on which I live has a name – I call it Sanctuary (It is listed with the State that way as a Tree Farm). So many people, over the years of my ministry, have referred to the building where we gather on Sunday as the Sanctuary.
Well, those may be our Sanctuary, but they are not God’s. 2 Corinthians 6 is one place where we can actually grasp the Biblical concept of God’s Sanctuary. The reality that many Believers have never effectively understood over the course of time is completely clear in this beautiful passage from the Apostle Paul (under the direction of God’s Spirit). If you have not read it recently (or ever) I suggest you do so immediately.
Verse 16 is so abundantly clear – “we are the Sanctuary of the living God. . . .” The reality is we like it the other way. We like all those other “places” being the Sanctuary so we can pretend that when we are not “in the building,” or “facing the music” of life, our responsibility is relaxed, or weak, or sometimes non-existent. We sometimes have a struggle with abandoning the understanding that “darkness and light have no fellowship.” (see Vs 14)
Is it possible that we are “limited by our own affections?” (Vs.14) Are we living in such a manner that we provide opportunities for others around us to stumble (Vs. 3)? Is there a shortage of “purity, knowledge, patience and kindness.” (Vs. 6) The Chapter has a plethora of ideas that we might just consider vitally import if we accept the premise.
Believer, YOU are the Sanctuary! Enough said.