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A Christian, God's Temple.

A Christian, God's Temple.

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Published by glennpease
BY JOHN OWEN, D.D.


" For ye are the temple of the living God ; as God hath said, I will dwell in them,
and walk in them; and I wll be their God, and they shall be my people.
Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord,
and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, and will be a
Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord
Almighty."— 2 Cor. vi. 16-18.
BY JOHN OWEN, D.D.


" For ye are the temple of the living God ; as God hath said, I will dwell in them,
and walk in them; and I wll be their God, and they shall be my people.
Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord,
and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, and will be a
Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord
Almighty."— 2 Cor. vi. 16-18.

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Published by: glennpease on Jul 02, 2013
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A CHRISTIA, GOD's TEMPLE.
BY JOH OWE, D.D.
" For ye are the temple of the living God ; as God hath said, I will dwell in them,and walk in them; and I wll be their God, and they shall be my people.Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord,and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, and will be aFather unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the LordAlmighty."— 2 Cor. vi. 16-18.There are three things in these words: — First. The privilege of believers, especially as they are the churchof God : They " are the temple of the livmg God, as God hath said."Secondly. The duty which, by virtue of that privilege, is incumbenton all believers: "Wherefore," saith he, "come out from amongthem, and be ye separate, and touch not the unclean thing."Thirdly. A promise made unto the due performance of the dutyby virtue of that privilege : " And I vnW receive you, and will be a• This sermon was preached March 27, T)74.286 A CHRISTIA, GOD's TEMPLK Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith theLord Almighty."You may well thmk I shall not speak at large to these things. Iintend only so far to touch upon them, as just to lead me to whatI think is the present sin of this nation, and what are the causes of the judgments upon it.In verse 16, believers are said to be dedicated, consecrated, andmade holy to God, as his peculiar lot and portion. And then theuse of it is to show the twofold sin for which judgment cometh uponthis nation. The first is, That the nation deals not with them asGod's consecrated lot and portion; that is the sin of the nation.The second is, That they behave not themselves as God's consecratedlot and portion ; that is the sin of the people of God.I shall spend some time in confirming my foundation. You haveit, with the ground of it, Rev. v. 9, where the church speaks to Christ,
 
" Thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation ; and hast madeus imto our God kings and priests." Before the purchase of themby Christ, they lay in the common lot of mankind ; they were in thepeople, and tongues, and kindreds, and nations of the earth. Christmakes a purchase of them. He did not die to redeem all, but toredeem some out of all the kindreds, and nations, and tongues underheaven. Upon Christ's making a purchase of them, they are nomore their o"\vn. " Ye are bought with a price," saith the apostle ;"ye are not your own." Whose, then, are they? They are Christ's,Rom. xiv. 9, " For this cause he both died and rose again, and re-vived, that he might be Lord both of the dead and hving;" that is,of the whole church, alive and dead, that they might be his. Hetook them all into his disposal. And what did he do with them?When they were absolutely his own, and in his power to dispose of them as he saw good, he dedicates them to God. " He makes uskings and priests unto God," saith he. Christ might have disposedof his purchase another way; but this course he took, — he dedicatesthem unto God. Kings and priests were so, as I shall show you after-ward. The apostle Peter tells us the same of all believers, 1 Pet.il 9, " But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holynation, a peculiar" or purchased " people." The same is expressedagain. Tit. ii. 14, and in sundry other places, which I shall not insistupon. But there is one expression of it which must be taken noticeof ; and that is, where they are called the " first-fmits unto God,"James i. 18, " Of his own -will begat he us mtli the word of tnith,that we should be a kind of first-fruits of his creatures." And Rev.xiv. the expression occurs again,^ " These are they which were not' In the original edition the words are, " he expresses it again." As theseA CHRISTIA, GODS TEMPLE. 287defiled with women, .... being the first-fruits unto God." When Godgave and sanctified all things unto his church of old, he reserved thefirst-fruits unto himself. These were all to be dedicated to him, every-one in his way whereof he was capable ; — clean beasts by sacrifice ;men by redemption; corn and wine by a meat-offering: but God re-tained all the first-fi'uits to himself. He laid it upon the land as arent-charge, that he might keep up his title to the whole. So hetells them, Lev. xxv. 23, " The land is mine," saith he, " and ye arebut strangers and sojourners with me." All the concernments of theChurch of God are God's. He entertains us in his house, at his table,and sustains us with his ordinances. God took the first-fruits as anacknowledgment that they held all from him; and when he wouldtake them no more, he destroyed the land.
 
ow God takes behevers, that they may be a kind of first-fruitsunto himself of the creatures. He satisfies himself with believersthroughout the world, to be first-fruits of the whole creation. Andif God should cease from taking these first-fruits, he would destroythe world. To what end should he maintain this fabric at such anexpense of power, patience, forbearance, goodness, wisdom, if therecame no revenue to him? ow, he never took any revenue but thefirst-firuits. And if any one (as I shall afterward show) do put forthhis hands to this portion of God, he will be sure sorely to revengeit. For the most part this is the state of things among worldly men, — the more they have, the readier they are to lay their hands upon theportion of others. But I am sure the more men have throughout theworlll, the readier they are to lay their hands upon the portionof God. But saith he, Jer. ii. 3, " Israel was holiness unto theLord, and the first-fruits of his increase : all that devour him shalloffend; evil shall come upon them, saith the Lord;" — they shallcontract guilt, and they shall have punishment fall upon them." All that devour them shall offend." If that were all, they wouldnot much care for it ; — but, " Evil shall come upon them, saith theLord."Let us a little inquire how behevers come to be dedicated, consercrated, and made holy unto God, — to be his temple, tabernacle, first-fruits, his lot and portion, as they are called.Why, this notion is taken from the Old Testament, and it is spokenof in allusion to what was in use then, when both persons and thingswere dedicated to God.By what way, then, were things dedicated and consecrated to God,made his portion, and became holy?words are very ambiguous, and seemingly ascribe the language quoted from theRevelation of John to the apostle James, mentioned in the preceding sentence,we have ventured, in tliis instance, on a slight alteration of the text. — Ed.288 A CHRISTIA, GOD's TEMPLE.There were four ways whereby this was done : — I. By special calland legal constitution. II. By imction. III. By inhabitation. And,IV. By vow, and actual separation thereupon.There is no other way whereby any thing was ever dedicated toGod under the Old Testament. And we shall find [that] all these

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