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He said to them, “The Scriptures declare, ‘My Temple will be called a house of prayer for all nations,’ but you have turned it into a den of thieves.” Mark 11:17 NLT

Closely following the Hosanna of Palm Sunday, Jesus enters the Temple and doesn't like what he sees. The Temple's outer court was a combination flea market and money exchange.

These things weren't necessarily bad in themselves. It wasn't practical for people traveling a distance to Jerusalem to bring animal sacrifices and to give alms; folks would need to exchange their local coin for Roman currency. The problem was the profit that was being made.

The Temple's purpose was to serve as a place to worship–"a house of prayer." It was to be open to all, not limited to those who could afford to pay. Nor was it intended to be a place of commerce, with people rich from what was intended for God.

Before his death and resurrection, Jesus promised that the Father would send the Holy Spirit. The same presence of God that entered into the Holy of Holies in the Temple would enter into each of us. As a result, we need to treat our souls with the same reverence Christ expected in the physical structure of stone.

As temples, we must protect what happens inside its metaphorical walls by rejecting what we know is wrong. Sin always comes with a high cost, trying to separate us from the Holy of Holies. Like Christ, we need to flip over the tables and send sin packing when we notice this happening.

Gracious Father, thank you for sending your Son, who sacrificed his life for our salvation, and the Spirit which brings your holiness into our lives. May we treat our temples with reverence and be vigilant, guarding our temples against sin. In Jesus Christ, we pray. Amen.


Pastor Tim

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