Thursday, October 22, 2015

Temple for the Antichrist?

If a third Temple must be built for the 'abomination of desolation to take place, then, we can say Jesus cannot return today! Or until it is built. Jesus told us we shall see the abomination of desolation that Daniel the prophet spoke of. If Paul understood this to be a literal temple, then why didn't he tell us in 2 Thessalonians that the existing temple has to defiled and destroyed first?
The man of sin "exalts himself above that he AS GOD sits IN THE TEMPLE OF GOD" (II Thes. 2:4). It is quite important that we understand just what Paul meant by his use of the term "temple of God". The popular teaching is that Paul was speaking of a future rebuilt JEWISH TEMPLE in Jerusalem. But a careful study of every reference that Paul made to the "temple of God" reveals that he NEVER applied this term to the Jewish Temple! When the Bible speaks of the complete, literal temple, the word "hieron" is used. This word is used 71 times in the New Testament in reference to the temple at Jerusalem. On the other hand, the word that Paul used for temple is "naos" which refers not to the complete, literal temple, but to the Holy Place, the dwelling of God. And the dwelling place of God is now THE CHURCH WHICH IS HIS BODY. There is only ONE verse in the entire New Testament (and therefore in the entire Bible - out of over 450 verses about the temple) that is tied to the antichrist (2 Thessalonians 2:4). And in THAT verse - the Greek word naos is used for "temple".
God's purpose from the foundation of the world has been the building a spiritual house, a holy temple, an eternal abiding place in which He and His creation can meet. It is a temple made up of living stones. Every stone is a redeemed person and every stone is a person upon whom the mighty hand of God has been laid in dealing. More than three thousand years ago Solomon built a magnificent temple of stone and precious materials. He overlaid it with gold and adorned it with silver. So wonderful was it that the Queen of Sheba stood transfixed at the sight. But the temple built by Solomon was only an ephemeral foreshadow of the living temple which Christ would build by the Spirit - a temple not made with hands.
The beautiful temple in Jerusalem was a Type and Shadow of good things to come (Heb. 10:1; Col. 2:16-17). As with the Tabernacle in the Wilderness, so the temple of old was made according to the pattern of the true tabernacle which Moses saw in the mount, and in spite of all teachings to the contrary, there will never be another temple built to take the place of or to serve the same ends as that which passed away with the destruction of Jerusalem. That temple was only the shadow of better things to come: merely the natural type of the spiritual reality which Moses saw in the mount and after which he patterned that shadow. So wherever we see reference to a temple of the present or future, it MUST refer to "the true sanctuary, and the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man" (Heb. 8:2).
Furthermore, there is only one such tabernacle, or temple. The Word nowhere tells of two, or three, or one hundred, one away off somewhere in space where Jesus is ministering, another in Jerusalem built by the Jews, and another spiritual one composed of living stones. There is but ONE temple, ONE great High Priest, and ONE royal priesthood. So when the priests of old served "unto the example and shadow of heavenly things" (Heb. 8:5), those heavenly things were the same that Moses saw in the mount, and the same heavenly things to which we have now come. We "are come unto mount Zion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem" (Heb. 12:22). Let us never forget that!
Listen to the words of Peter as he presses this golden truth home to the understanding hearts of the saints. "If you have tasted that the Lord is gracious, Who came as unto a LIVING STONE, disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of God, and precious, YOU ALSO, as LIVELY STONES, are built up a SPIRITUAL HOUSE, AN HOLY PRIESTHOOD, TO OFFER UP SPIRITUAL SACRIFICES, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ" (I Pet. 2:3-5).
This revelation vividly reveals just what the temple of God really is. Not a temple of dead stones, but of living stones, each stone a spiritually living person. Not covered with glittering gold, but overshadowed by God, Not adorned with silver, but founded on redemption. Not fashioned with glittering, precious stones, but with the eternal jewels of His own nature, glory, and power!
It cannot be temporal or transient as were the temples of Israel which were all destroyed in turn. The temple which is Christ's body is eternal in the heavenlies. It is not earthly nor does it belong to the earthly realm, but to an heavenly. It is not of corruption, but of incorruption. Paul wrote of it thus: "The temple o God is holy, which temple YOU ARE" (I Cor. 3:17). "Know not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you?" (I Cor. 6:19). "For you are the temple of the living God; as God has said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them" (II Cor. 6:16).
Should one claim to see these truths and yet remain as he was before, then he has not seen by the Spirit, but by the natural mind only. Away with all sin and pride! Away with all selfseeking, self-indulgence, and self-promotion! Away with the MAN OF SIN who usurps the place of Christ in His temple! If you are one of the many who believe that the temple of God is the harlot Church where the biblical salvation is a man-made 'sinners prayer", or a future Jewish temple in Jerusalem, I must tell you that neither qualifies as THE TEMPLE OF GOD. That swaggering, drunken, Idolatrous harlot called MYSTERY BABYLON is not the temple of God, rather, it is the great antichrist system that supplants the true temple. In the book of Revelation it is clear that the temple of God is not Mystery Babylon, neither is it the Jew's temple, but an eternal, holy abiding place which our God is building for Himself. And let us not forget that God will never vacate this temple. God will never vacate this heavenly temple to return to a temple made with hands. To do so would be to set aside and deny the Christ of Calvary, and to render that sacrifice of Calvary impotent and of no avail. There will never be another sacrifice for sin offered (Heb. 10:10-14). There will never again be a temple for the offering of such sacrifices!

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