Description of the Temple
Illustration of Solomon’s Temple (from ESV Study Bible)
The Temples of God
The house of God in Israel for 400 years was only a tent. Most of the time it stood at Shiloh after entering canaan, and later it was in Gibeon (2 Chro 1:3). See Exodus chapter 25-40 for its description.
The plan was revealed by God to David (1 Chro 28:12, 19), and built by Solomon (2 Chro 2-4). Its glory was short-lived. It was plundered within five years after Solomon’s death and was destroyed by Babylonians 340 years later, in 586 B.C.
Also known as the Second Temple. Built after the return from captivity, it stood for 500 years. Its construction is recorded in Ezra and Nehemiah.
This was the temple to which Christ came. It was an expansion of Zerubbabel’s Temple. It has taken Herod the Great 46 years (John 2:20) to build it. It was a truly magnificent building of marble and gold, surrounded by courts and porticos. It was destroyed by the Romans in A.D. 70. Jesus was furious when he saw the Jews had turned the temple into a market (John 2:16).
Jesus called His body a temple (John 2:19-21). In Him God lived among men. Jesus said that earthly temples were not necessary to the worship of God (John 4:20-24)
The church is a temple of God. God’s dwelling-place in the word. [Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in your midst? If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy that person; for God’s temple is sacred, and you together are that temple. ] (1 Cor 3:16-17)
Each individual Christian is a temple of God. [Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own;] (1 Corinthians 6:19)
Ezekiel saw a temple in his vision (Ez 40-43). It was not an actual temple, but a vision of a future, ideal, restored temple.
The Temple in Heaven:
The tabernacle was a pattern of something in heaven. [But when Christ came as high priest of the good things that are now already here, he went through the greater and more perfect tabernacle that is not made with human hands, that is to say, is not a part of this creation.] (Heb 9:12).
[For Christ did not enter a sanctuary made with human hands that was only a copy of the true one; he entered heaven itself, now to appear for us in God’s presence.] (Heb 9:24).
John saw a temple in Revelation 11: [Then God’s temple in heaven was opened, and within his temple was seen the ark of his covenant. And there came flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder, an earthquake and a severe hailstorm.].
Later, God and the Lamb had become the temple: [I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple.] (Rev 21:22)