Monday Devotion: Cleansing the Temple

“My house shall be called a house of prayer for all the nations.”
Mark 11:17

Jesus had just rode in on a donkey to shouts of Hosanna the day before, it was such a joyous scene. But now He was correcting the people, telling them the true purpose of the Father’s house.

Mark 11:15-19 NKJV “So they came to Jerusalem. Then Jesus went into the temple and began to drive out those who bought and sold in the temple, and overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who sold doves. 16 And He would not allow anyone to carry wares through the temple. 17 Then He taught, saying to them, “Is it not written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer for all nations’? But you have made it a ‘den of thieves.’ 18 And the scribes and chief priests heard it and sought how they might destroy Him; for they feared Him, because all the people were astonished at His teaching. 19 When evening had come, He went out of the city.”

The time of preparation for the Passover was holy, yet the temple rulers made merchandise of it and dishonored God. Priests were offering unclean sacrifices and people were being cheated out of money. The entire system of worship had been corrupted and Jesus had enough of it.

He taught the people, quoting from the Old Testament, “My house shall be a house of prayer for all nations.” This signified that He would make Jew and Gentile one new man in Himself.

As you reflect on this passage think of your church, your time of worship and receiving the teaching of the Word. Is it trivialized? Does worship look more like a rock concert? Are you taught the Scripture or are you given encouraging talks with little Scriptural basis? The Church is for the body of Christ, yet all too often the shepherds are entertaining the goats instead of caring for the sheep. Would you say your church has reverences for the Lord in how they conduct the service? If Jesus walked into your church, how do you think He would respond?

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