On the Object and Use of the Sanctuary
Luke 21:5-6
And as some spoke of the temple, how it was adorned with goodly stones and gifts, he said,…

I. THE CIRCUMSTANCES UNDER WHICH CHRIST UTTERED THESE WORDS. Every attentive reader of Holy Scripture must have remarked this fact, in the history of the Bible, viz., that whenever and wheresoever God revealed His choice of a spot among the sons of men, to "place His Name there" — where He might be especially present with them, to receive their worship, and to bestow on them His blessing — that spot was always directed and made to be as great a contrast, and as much superior as possible to all other places in which men ordinarily abode. But all this, as the same attentive reading of Holy Scripture must also convince us, was immediately directed to its own great and specific objects. It was designed by God to lead their thoughts upward to Himself. The temple had been a great probationary blessing to the Jews; it had been ordained of old by God, for the advancement of their essential and everlasting good; and it was now foredoomed to such ruin and desolation, that "there should not be left in it one stone upon another, which should not be thrown down," only because of the way in which they had abused their privileges, trampled on their mercies, and forgotten the covenant while they walked in the very presence of their God.


1. These words of our Lord give no sort of encouragement to the notion which has often prevailed, and has been much repeated in our days, of its being utterly immaterial what kind of fabric we dedicate to the Most High; that all must be alike to Him, and the meanest sufficiently acceptable in His sight; inasmuch as "He dwelleth not in temples made with hands," and can be as well honoured within walls of clay, as beneath the stateliest roof that ever was raised by man. When men live, according to their respective degrees, in a state which God has prospered — dwelling, if not, like David, in "houses of cedar," at least in those of competence and comfort — it is not for them to suffer the "Ark of God to remain within curtains"; and though to the wanderer in the desert, or the colonist in his new settlement, the best tent or cot he could procure might be meet for the service of his God, yet it is not so for a society of Englishmen, dwelling in the very bosom of their highly favoured country and Church. How far are we using our Redeemer's sanctuary upon earth, in such a manner as that, when this fails, we may be received into "a building of God; a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens" We must not forget the possibility there is that we might be walking in the judicial blindness of Israel, whilst we are possessed of all the light, and all the means of grace, with which the Christian Church is entrusted.

(J. Puckle.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: And as some spake of the temple, how it was adorned with goodly stones and gifts, he said,

WEB: As some were talking about the temple and how it was decorated with beautiful stones and gifts, he said,

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