21 in whom the whole building, being fitted together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord,
Paul now discusses the formation of the building, the church.
Christ holds together the foundation of the whole universal church.
the whole building,
God joined the entire building of the universal church in Christ. The building has many parts, but they all come together in Christ.
being fitted [framed] together,
These words are found only here and in Ephesians 4:16. Various parts of the building are skillfully fitted to each other. The church is not haphazardly thrown together. God puts both Jews and Gentiles into this building.
The church is a dynamic organism continually growing by people coming to Christ. Each believer is a stone added to the building. No one knows how many souls have been added to this spiritual building, but it is millions upon millions.
into a holy temple in the Lord,
This new building is a temple, but not just any temple; it is a “holy” temple in the Lord. “Holy” means that God sets this temple apart as unique and special.
The word “temple” carries the idea of the sanctuary part of the temple, not the open courts of the temple. The inanimate Old Testament sanctuary represents a type whereas the Holy Spirit dwelling corporately in the church serves as the antitype.
Everything in the church depends on our union with Christ.
Union with Christ is the sole condition on which the church rests. Everything in the universal church revolves around that.
The conversion of each believer is a new stone in God’s building, the church. The church will not be complete until everyone who will believe does so.