Today's Reading: Amos 9:11-15
On that day I will raise up The tabernacle of David, which has fallen down, And repair its damages; I will raise up its ruins, And rebuild it as in the days of old; (Amos 9:11)
In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. The temple was a mess. It was, for most people, just a religious building. Where was faith? Several times in its history, the temple had to be repaired; God's people had to embark on big projects to rebuild and repair the temple, because they let it fall apart. That's what happens when we are in charge of God's house—it falls apart. That's what happens to our flesh, where God should dwell—itfalls apart and drifts away in sin.
So, God builds a new temple. This isn't one that is made out of stones. It is the one made out of flesh. The Son comes and dwells in this Temple the moment He is conceived in Mary's womb. Then, for our sins, He let sinful men destroy His body, beating it bloody and nailing it to the Cross. But on the third day it was rebuilt. Jesus rose from the dead and His body is now forever united to His divine nature. When we see Jesus, we will see this temple—not a big building made of big stones, but the God-Man Jesus Christ, who sits in glory at the Father's right hand!
And God is building more temples (us) into whom He puts His Holy Spirit, giving us Christ through water, word and body and blood. By His means of grace, we are the temple of the Holy Spirit in whom Christ dwells. God lives in you by His Word. Sure, our temples seem to get a bit run down by our sins. But every remembrance of our baptism, every absolution from our pastor, every meal of Christ's body and blood is when the Lord Himself renovates His temple, makes it new, cleans it up and gives it the spit and polish that makes His house look good!
The temple that God raised up is His own Son in the flesh, who now makes His dwelling in you and among those in whom He will dwell eternally in the life to come. In the Name of Jesus. Amen.
In His temple now behold Him, See the long-expected Lord; Ancient prophets had foretold Him, God has now fulfilled His Word. Now to praise Him, His redeemed Shall break forth with one accord! (LSB 519:1)
Reflections for the Epiphany and Pre-Lent Seasons are written by the Rev. Mark Buetow, pastor of Bethel Lutheran Church in Du Quoin, IL and the Higher Things Internet Services Executive and Reflections Editor. Comments may be sent to the author at the following address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Questions or comments regarding the Reflections may be sent to the Rev. Mark Buetow, Reflections Editor, email@example.com.