Lord’s Day 41: Temples of the Holy Spirit

Catechism and Psalter

Lord’s Day 41, the subject of today’s post in URC Psalmody’s Heidelberg Catechism series, reveals God’s will for the Christian’s life as it relates to the seventh commandment.

108 Q.  What is God’s will for us in the seventh commandment?

A.  God condemns all unchastity.
We should therefore thoroughly detest it
and, married or single,
live decent and chaste lives.

109 Q.  Does God, in this commandment, forbid only such scandalous sins as adultery?

A.  We are temples of the Holy Spirit, body and soul,
and God wants both to be kept clean and holy.
That is why he forbids everything which incites unchastity,
whether it be actions, looks, talk, thoughts, or desires.

Suggested Songs

98, “Fools in Their Heart Have Said” (Psalm 53)

“God condemns all unchastity.”  The apostle James wrote that “whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become accountable for all of it” (James 2:10 ESV).  Indeed, in a broader sense Scripture teaches that we are the bride of Christ (cf. Eph. 5).  Thus, by disobeying him in any way and following the allures of the world, we are spiritually “unchaste.”  The psalmist recognized that this condition of spiritual adultery is the natural tendency of all mankind.  In the blue Psalter Hymnal’s terms:

God looked from heaven above
On all the human race,
To see if any understood,
If any sought His face.

They all are gone aside,
Corruption doth abound;
There is not one that doeth good,
Not even one is found.

Yea, God will put to shame
And make them flee away,
For He will cast them off in wrath
And fill them with dismay.

15, “O Why So Far Removed, O Lord” (Psalm 10)

“We should therefore thoroughly detest it.”  The negative example for the believer to heed and avoid is that of the hardened sinner.  Psalm 10 describes the actions and attitude of the wicked man, who has set himself so firmly against God that his laws are “too high for him to see.”  In a culture where unchastity and promiscuity are becoming less and less scandalous, the Christian’s first step must be to align himself with the eternal truth of God’s law.

O why so far removed, O Lord,
And why so distant be;
Why hidest Thou Thy face from us
In our anxiety?

The wicked in his arrogance
Refuses God to fear,
Nor is it in his thoughts at all
The sovereign God to hear.

His ways are grievous and Thy laws
Too high for him to see;
He therefore his defiance bids,
And taunts his enemy.

82, “A Goodly Theme Is Mine” (Psalm 45)

(Recorded on YouTube)

“We are temples of the Holy Spirit, body and soul, and God wants both to be kept clean and holy.”  The Christian, realizing that both his body and soul are set apart for God’s service, ought joyfully to resist any adulterous defilements of the world, clinging instead to his faithful Savior and Lord.  The battle against sin may not be easy, but our victory in Christ is sure.  Psalm 45 emphasizes the intimacy between Jesus and the people he has bought with his own blood—a story of redemption that is indeed “a goodly theme,” a joyful song.

A goodly theme is mine,
And eagerly I sing;
For bounteous words flow from my lips
As I salute the King.
Supremely fair He is,
In beauty peerless He;
For Him the favor of the Lord
Doth grace eternally.

O royal bride, give heed,
This King is now thy lord;
Forsake thy former loyalties,
Full fealty accord.
Thy beauty and thy grace
Will then delight the King;
And they to thee, since thou art His,
Their precious gifts will bring.

Enthroned in royal state
All glorious thou shalt dwell,
With garments fair, inwrought with gold,
His bride He loveth well.
And they who honor thee
Shall in thy train attend,
And to the palace of the King
Shall joyfully ascend.

Then in thy father’s place,
The sons of royal birth
Thou wilt endow with regal gifts
As princes of the earth.
Thy name shall be proclaimed
Through all succeeding days,
And all the peoples everywhere
Shall give Thee endless praise.


1 Response to “Lord’s Day 41: Temples of the Holy Spirit”

  1. 1 Lord’s Day 42: He Forbids All Greed | URC Psalmody Trackback on January 7, 2014 at 12:13 pm

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