Cover Image: The Temple & the Church's Mission

The Temple & the Church's Mission:
A Biblical Theology of the Dwelling Place of God (NSBT)

G.K. Beale (IVP, 2004)

Blurb Review by Dr. Alistair I. Wilson


In this comprehensive study, Gregory Beale argues that the Old Testament tabernacle and temples were symbolically designed to point to the end-time reality that God's presence, formerly limited to the holy of holies, was to be extended throughout the whole cosmos. Hence, John's vision in Revelation 21 is best understood as picturing the new heavens and the earth as the eschatological temple. This stimulating exposition traces the theme of the tabernacle and temple along the Bible's story-line, also illuminating many texts and closely related themes. It shows how the significance and symbolism of the temple can be better understood in the light of contrasts to and similarities with Ancient Near Eastern assumptions, and offers new insights in the meaning of the temple in both Old and New Testaments. Extremely highly recommended.


1. Introduction
2. Cosmic symbolism of temples in the Old Testament
3. The expanding purpose of temples in the Old Testament
4. The expanding end-time purpose of temples in the Old Testament
5. The 'already and not yet' fulfilment of the end-time temple in Christ and his people: the Gospels
6. The inauguration of a new temple in the book of Acts
7. The inauguration of a new temple in the epistles of Paul
8. The temple in 2 Thessalonians 2
9. The inauguration of a new temple in Hebrews
10. The world-encompassing temple in Revelation
11. The temple in Ezekiel 40-48 and its relationship to the New Testament
12. Theological Conclusions: the physical temple as a foreshadowing of God's and Christ's presence as the the true temple
13. Practical reflections on Eden and the temple for the church in the twenty-first century

©2021 Beginning with Moses. Designed and built by David Turner