2015 TGC Message Three


The Church as the Temple of God—The Goal of God’s Eternal Economy

Message Three

The Intrinsic Significance of the Materials of the Temple (2)

Opening Word of the Prophesying Meeting

Reading the verses in each day.

Reading the main points in the outlines.

Pray-reading the verses:

But if anyone builds upon the foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, grass, stubble, the work of each will become manifest; for the day will declare it, because it is revealed by fire, and the fire itself will prove each one’s work, of what sort it is—1 Cor. 3:12-13.

Coming to Him, a living stone, rejected by men but with God chosen and precious, You yourselves also, as living stones, are being built up as a spiritual house …—1 Pet. 2:4-5.

Word of Appetizer

We need to take heed that we build the church as the temple of God with the proper materials. What are these materials?

The major parts of the temple were made of wood overlaid with gold, signifying man being overlaid—united, mingled, and incorporated—with God. The altar, the molten sea, and the lavers were made of bronze. The pillars of the temple were built of bronze, signifying God’s judgment. The stones of the temple signify Christ’s humanity in transformation.

Spiritual Burden

The Bible tells us that it took seven and a half years and the labor of myriads of men to complete the building up of the temple; this indicates that our experience of Christ being renewed, deepened, stabilized, strengthened, intensified, and enlarged in order for us to enter into the reality of the Body of Christ is a gradual “day by day,” “little by little,” and “brighter and brighter” experience in the Body until the day dawns and the morning star rises in our hearts.

Concluding Word of the Prophesying Meeting

The Revelation of the Truth

We need to take heed that we build the church as the temple of God with the proper materials. The major parts of the temple were made of wood overlaid with gold, signifying man being overlaid—united, mingled, and incorporated—with God.

The altar, the molten sea, and the lavers of the temple were made of bronze.

The pillars of the temple were built of bronze, signifying God’s judgment.

The stones of the temple signify Christ’s humanity in transformation, the transformed Christ.

The Experience of Life

The pillars of the temple were built of bronze, signifying God’s judgment. Those who are useful to God are constantly under God’s judgment (bronze), realizing that they are men in the flesh, worthy of nothing but death and burial. The pillar is a sign, a testimony, of God’s building through transformation in practicing the Body life.

Practice and Application

Lilies signify a life of faith in God, a life of living by what God is to us, not by what we are. The bronze means “not I,” and the lily means “but Christ”.

The church should be built without any “noise” of the self. The only sound in the church that we should hear is the music, “the joyful noise,” of calling on the Lord, rejoicing, praising, praying, thanking, and singing.

Using Key Verses to Have a Bird’s-Eye View over the Whole Outline

Key Verses (1)

And for the gold, by weight of the gold for all the vessels of each kind of service; for all the vessels of silver, by weight for all the vessels for each kind of service—1 Chron. 28:14.

But if anyone builds upon the foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, grass, stubble,…and the fire itself will prove each one’s work, of what sort it is—1 Cor. 3:12-13.

The Size and Weight;
Taking Heed That We Build the Church as the Temple of God with the Proper Materials

I.With the exception of the Ark, the size and number of the furnishings and the utensils were greatly enlarged in the temple from that of the tabernacle; this indicates that although Christ Himself cannot be enlarged, our experience of Christ in all His riches should be greatly increased and enlarged.

II. The size and weight signify that in the church the different aspects of the experience of Christ and the different gifts and functions of the members must be properly proportioned and balanced.

III. We need to take heed that we build the church as the temple of God with the proper materials; at the judgment seat of Christ, each one’s work will be proved according to “what sort it is”.

Key Verses (2)

And the interior of the innermost sanctuary was twenty cubits long and twenty cubits wide and twenty cubits high; and he overlaid it with pure gold, and he overlaid cedar altar—1 Kings 6:20.

And you shall make the altar of acacia wood; …and you shall overlay it with bronze—Exo. 27:1-2

And he formed the two bronze pillars….And he made two capitals of molten bronze to set upon the tops of the pillars….There were nets of checker work with wreaths of chain work for the capitals….And there were two rows of pomegranates around the one network, to cover the capitals….And the capitals that were at the top of the pillars in the portico were of lily work, four cubits in diameter—1 Kings 7:15-19.

Wood Overlaid with Gold, Signifying Man Being Overlaid—United, Mingled, and Incorporated—with God; Bronze Signifies God’s Judgment

IV. The major parts of the temple were made of wood overlaid with gold, signifying man being overlaid—united, mingled, and incorporated—with God.

V. The altar, the molten sea, and the lavers of the temple were made of bronze.

VI. The pillars of the temple were built of bronze, signifying God’s judgment:

The pillar is a sign, a testimony, of God’s building through transformation in practicing the Body life.

•Through the crossing out of the network and the restriction of the chain work, we can live a pure, simple life (lilies) of trusting in God to express the riches (pomegranates) of the divine life of Christ for God’s building in life.

Key Verses (3)

And the house, when it was being built, was built of finished stone, cut at the quarry, so that neither hammer nor ax nor any iron tool was heard in the house when it was being built—1 Kings 6:7.

Coming to Him, a living stone, rejected by men but with God chosen and precious, you yourselves also, as living stones, are being built up as a spiritual house…—1 Pet. 2:4-5.

The Stones of the Temple—Christ’s Humanity in Transformation, the Transformed Christ

• Having become a man in the flesh, a man in the old creation, He needed to be transformed in His human part.

• Such a transformed Christ is now the living stone, the foundation stone, the cornerstone, and the topstone of God’s building.

The stones in the temple also signify the believers in Christ, who have been transformed by Christ as the stone.

The stones used for the building up of the church must be living inwardly and cut (dealt with) outwardly; every piece of stone used for the building of the temple was, in principle, already cut and dealt with in the mountains; the church should be built without any “noise” of the self.

 

Prophesying Topics—Twelve Topics per Week

D1
T1 With the exception of the Ark, the size and number of the utensils were greatly enlarged in the temple from that of the tabernacle (2 Chron. 4:1-8)

(Please explain that Christ Himself cannot be enlarged, but our experience of Christ should be greatly increased and enlarged.)

T2 The sizes and the weight of the vessels (1 Chron. 28:15)

(Please explain what the significances of the size and weight of the vessels in the temple are.)

D2
T1 We need to build the church as the temple of God with the proper materials (1 Cor. 3:10, 12-13)

(Please explain that at the judgment seat of Christ, each one’s work will be proved according to “what sort it is”.)

T2 Oil poured upon the stone and wood overlaid with gold (Gen. 28:18; Exo. 26:32)

(Please explain that both phrases speak of God coming to man to be mingled and joined with man as one.)

D3
T1 The altar of bronze and the laver (1 Pet. 3:18; Titus 3:5)

(Please explain the different spiritual significances of the bronze of the altar and the bronze of the laver.)

T2 The two pillars of the temple were made of bronze (Gal. 2:20)

(Please explain that if we would be a pillar, we must realize that we are those under God’s judgment.)

D4
T1 The pillar symbolizes that the transformed man is one with the Triune God (Gen. 28:12, footnote 1)

(Please explain that in the account of Jacob’s dream, the stone, the pillar, the house of God, and the oil are outstanding items.)

T2 The reason for both division and fruitlessness among believers is that there is no bronze (Rom. 7:18)

(Please explain that those who are useful to God are constantly under God’s judgment (bronze).)

D5
T1 On the capitals of the pillars in the temple there were “nets of checker work with wreaths of chain work” (1 Kings 7:16, footnote 1)

(Please explain that these signify the complicated and intermixed situation in which those who are pillars in God’s building live and bear responsibility)

T2 On the top of the capitals were lilies and pomegranates (1 Kings 7:18-20) (Refer to Outline VI. E. 1-3)

(Please explain the spiritual significances of lilies and pomegranates.)

D6
T1 In addition to wood, stone was used for the building of the temple (1 Pet. 2:4-5)

(Please explain that the stones of the temple signify Christ’s humanity in transformation, and also signify the believers in Christ.)

T2 The building of the church should be without noise (1 Kings 6:7)

(Please explain that in all the church service, we should hear only praising, thanksgiving, and singing.)

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