“In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit” (Eph. 2:22).- Ephesians 2:22
As we begin our study of Ephesians 2:22 today, we must again point out how our salvation is the work of the triune Godhead, each person of the Trinity playing a specific role in order to achieve the one goal of our redemption. Christ Jesus is the cornerstone of the household of God, the one upon whom we must rest if we are to be incorporated into the new temple (v. 20). According to the goals established in the covenant of redemption, that agreement among the persons of the Trinity to save a people for Themselves, the Father is accessible through the Son of God alone (v. 18), and today’s passage alludes to His work in bringing believers together into a household fit for His dwelling (v. 22). Verse 22 also tells us that the third person of the Trinity — God the Holy Spirit — is the One through whom our Creator dwells in this house.
In these roles we see distinction: the Son of God is the cornerstone; the Holy Spirit indwells believers; and the Father fits the stones together for His house according to His eternal plan. Yet at the same time, we see a unity. In relying on the Son of God as the cornerstone of our faith, we also rest ultimately on the Father and the Spirit, for the Son is in the Father and the Spirit is the Spirit of God the Son (John 14:11; 2 Cor. 3:17). Because the Spirit indwells us, we have access to both the Father and the Son, for both Father and Son sent the Spirit to live within us and to establish our fellowship with the triune Godhead (John 15:26). The Father builds us into His house by uniting us to the Son in the power of the Holy Spirit (Rom. 6:5; 1 Cor. 12:3). Our salvation is indeed great and glorious, accomplished according to the eternal plan of God, each person of the Godhead working specifically in order to manifest the one God’s eternal glory to creation.
As an outflow of the redemption accomplished at Calvary, our Creator, in the process of sanctification (our growth in holiness), knits us together with other believers that we might become a sanctuary in which He can rightly and eternally dwell (Eph. 2:22). This is all by grace, for in ourselves we are not deserving of this great honor. Yet because of His abundant mercy and love, we indeed are growing into His holy temple as we respond to the Spirit’s work to make us holy.
God is building us into His holy temple, but that does not mean we lack a role in the construction process. Unlike regeneration, sanctification is a cooperative work between the Holy Spirit and us (Phil. 2:12–13). Because of His work, we strive unto holiness in this life, and our efforts to mortify sin evidence that we are indwelt by the Spirit and truly belong to Jesus. We prove our election as we seek to live as holy people in this world.
Passages for Further Study
1 Corinthians 3:16–17
1 Peter 2:1–8