11 Apr A House of Prayer
Read Matthew 21:12-17
Thought for the Day: My life is meant to be God’s house of prayer!
After entering the city of Jerusalem to great fanfare, Jesus turned His attention to the Temple. The common people relied on their priests and rabbis for their religious instruction. So, it is almost certain that Jesus’ Temple visit was eagerly anticipated by many. They hoped that He would provide a message of encouragement from Scripture. That day, Jesus did refer to a passage from the prophet Isaiah: “I will bring them to my holy mountain of Jerusalem and will fill them with joy in my house of prayer. I will accept their burnt offerings and sacrifices, because My Temple will be called a house of prayer for all nations.”
Once inside the temple, Jesus was upset by the people’s willingness to turn a holy place (God’s Temple) into little more than a common flea market. Before He could enjoy time in God’s house of prayer, Jesus had work to do. As Holy Week began, Jesus turned over the money changers’ tables and sent the con artists on their way.
Jesus who has compassion for the lost and weeps for His friends was not willing to let the Temple be corrupted by greed. Jesus makes it very clear: We are called by God to live contrary to the ways of the world. This includes taking a stand against greed as well as the practices that hurt innocent and vulnerable people. Today, we don’t have a physical Temple to visit, but we do know that each of our bodies is God’s Holy Temple.
As we start Holy Week, are we allowing our lives to be God’s house of prayer? Or, do we need Jesus to purify us from greed or anything causing turmoil in our lives?
Pastors Stan and David