Jesus had his enemies, but he would not be denied his funeral march (only they didn’t know it). The crowds that would later turn against him, now lauded him as the Son of David, the one who came in the name of the Lord. But he just didn’t look like they thought he would.
The first thing he did when he came to the city was to enter the temple and tear the place up. We kind of picture Jesus as the nice, toothless lion that is soft and gentle. But Jesus was zealous about the honor of his Father. In the area dedicated to prayer, it had become commercialized. In anger he drove out the moneychangers and the dove-sellers. “My house will be called a house of prayer, but you are making it a den of thieves!”
I couldn’t help but think of how it has become today. With all due respect, it does bother me to get hit up with offers to buy Girl Scout Cookies, popcorn samples, etc… at church, even if it is the kids. And when the latest networking business starts up, it bothers me that I hear from others that I would never hear from otherwise.
And if truth be told, I also wish there were a lot more corporate prayer in church. Not just the obligatory prayers before and after every sermon. But then again, how do I rate the prayer in my own life? I have room for improvement.
Sometimes I think the “den of robbers” was not just about dishonest business in the place of worship, but that the Father was being robbed of a pure-hearted devotion met out in prayer. It’s hard to do with the cacophony of business surrounding you. Prayer is to be holy–set apart. Now I’m preaching to myself. That’s a little disturbing.
Memorized: Matthew 21:13 (Mar 12)
Triumphal Re-Entry–After several days of just crawling forward, I was able to get through this section. It’s amazing how much harder it is after my brain has had a lull in memorization the quantities. Truly your brain is the muscle that improves with practice, and it too can atrophy quickly.