13The Passover of the Jews was near, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.14In the temple he found people selling cattle, sheep, and doves, and the money changers seated at their tables. 15Making a whip of cords, he drove all of them out of the temple, both the sheep and the cattle. He also poured out the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. 16He told those who were selling the doves, “Take these things out of here! Stop making my Father’s house a marketplace!” 17His disciples remembered that it was written, “Zeal for your house will consume me.”
Jesus, evidently annoyed by the corruption of his Father’s temple, acts immediately. The passage tells us that he takes a whip of small cords and throws the merchants out, throws the tables, and warns them that it is not acceptable to corrupt what is sacred.
This warning should resonate strongly in our hearts today. We put aside holiness, scarcely spend time in prayer, and have become Sunday Christians. We have brought to the temple of the Holy Spirit all kinds of things that rob us of holiness. It is both worrisome and alarming that churches are being divided by political platforms, that the poor have ceased to be our focus of ministry, and that instead, we have chosen that which brings glory to ourselves.
The body of Christ has been permeated by a modern mindset that says it’s okay to justify the bad by calling it good. It is time for us to stop, evaluate our priorities, and turn to see the cross of Christ, the cruel cross that made us free and gave us eternal life, just out of love. The good news is that Jesus is always waiting to reestablish communion between us and the Father, and also to forgive and restore our unfaithful hearts. It is time for us to bend the knee before God, confessing our sins and instead committing to holiness in our churches and in our hearts.
Prayer: Dear Lord, hear our cry. Clean our hearts that are so very full of corruption. Forgive our forgetfulness of your presence, when only you can restore our souls. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
Martha Amaro is a Christian educator serving in partnership with the National Presbyterian Church in Mexico, along with her husband, Jaime, since 2001. They train leaders nationwide to facilitate the Children and Worship Program and develop children’s clubs to spread the good news of Jesus.