He [Jesus] said to them, “It is written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer,’ but you make it a den of robbers.” Matthew 21:13
When Jesus visits Jerusalem He finds that those with stewardship over the holy temple have replaced worship with worldliness and wealth-generation. The outer courts – the only space where Gentiles could come experience God and pray – had become a place of commerce instead of communion with God.
Jesus came to cleanse. And on His way to the cross to cleanse us with His blood, He stops at the temple to cleanse God’s temporary dwelling place. He turns over the tables of the merchants and money changers. He calls them out, “My house shall be called a house of prayer, but you make it a den of robbers.”
The holy place of God has taken on the look, feel, and attitude of the culture and environment, leaving little room for worship and communion with God. Jesus had no choice but to clean house.
What about the Church at large today? Have we crowded out the paths for non-believers to come and worship? Have we filled the space with individual motives, legalism, hatred, favoritism, leaving no room for others to come and worship?
And on a more personal level, now we as believers are the temple of God. How is our temple looking? Have we squeezed out space for worship and communion with God and replaced it with worldly things? Do we need to clean house to make room for God?
God, please show me where tables need to be overturned in my life. Show me places and things that are crowding out space that should be filled with You alone. Let this temple within me be a place of pure and holy worship to You.
Questions: How is your “temple” looking? Are you making room for worship, or is it filled with things of the world, leaving little room for God? Where might you need to do some “housecleaning” internally?