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Posts Tagged ‘den of robbers’

John 2:12–16 (ESV)

After this Jesus went down to Capernaum, with his mother and his brothers and his disciples, and they stayed there for a few days.

The Passover of the Jews was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.  In the temple he found those who were selling oxen and sheep and pigeons, and the money-changers sitting there.  Making a whip of cords, he drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and oxen.  He poured out the coins of the money-changers and overturned their tables.  He told those who sold the pigeons, “Take these things away; do not make my Father’s house a house of robbers.”

We usually gloss over passage believing it is not about us

But it is because it is about worship

Worship is main event

Everything that happens in the church

Begins and ends with our worship

The Setting

Passover

One of the three annual pilgrim feasts

that all Jewish men were to celebrate in Jerusalem

All leaven must be removed from the houses of His people.

It was a time rigorous examination

Lest one defile the worship of the people

Leaven refers to covetousness, extortion and idolatry.

Colossians 3:5

Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.

The outer court of the Temple

The Gentile Court

Where the outsiders came to worship

This is where the selling of animals and coin exchange was now placed

The statement of Jesus

Do not make my Father’s house a house of robbers

Is from Jeremiah 7:11

To understand the phrase house of robbers

We need to listen to Jeremiah 7:1-11

Jeremiah 7:1-11

The word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord: 

 

“Stand in the gate of the Lord’s house, and proclaim there this word, and say, Hear the word of the Lord, all you men of Judah who enter these gates to worship the Lord.  

 

Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: Amend your ways and your deeds, and I will let you dwell in this place. Do not trust in these deceptive words: ‘This is the temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord.’ 

 

“For if you truly amend your ways and your deeds, if you truly execute justice one with another, if you do not oppress the sojourner, the fatherless, or the widow, or shed innocent blood in this place, and if you do not go after other gods to your own harm, then I will let you dwell in this place, in the land that I gave of old to your fathers forever.

 

“Behold, you trust in deceptive words to no avail. Will you steal, murder, commit adultery, swear falsely, make offerings to Baal, and go after other gods that you have not known, and then come and stand before me in this house, which is called by my name, and say, ‘We are delivered!’ only to go on doing all these abominations?  Has this house, which is called by my name, become a den of robbers in your eyes? 

House of robbers

Is not about money

It is about the desecration of worship

By the people of God in His house

Since this is God’s House 

We ought to ask ourselves:

What would Jesus overturn in the church today?

How do we desecrate worship?

How might we misuse the sanctuary and desecrate worship?

A. W. Pink wrote:

God is inflexibly righteous as well as infinitely gracious. God is holy as well as merciful. 

We must ask ourselves:

How must God now regard the desecration of the many places, hearts and times which have been consecrated to His name?

A. W. Pink, again:

The desecration of these “houses, times, and hearts of prayer” leave them devoid of spirituality and strangers to the power of God.  The Lord will not tolerate an unholy mixture of worldly things with spiritual.

Calvin wrote:

Nothing is more dangerous than hypocrisy. While we deceive ourselves by empty flatteries, we imagine that God is blind like ourselves. 

MW Smith song

Here I am to Worship

When we come to worship, we need to ask ourselves

What are the spiritual purposes of the worship?

Does my behavior and spirit mirror the purposes of a Holy Godwhen I come into His house?

Calvin wrote:

We ought always, therefore, to keep before our eyes the majesty of God, which dwells in the Church, that it may not be defiled by any pollutions; and the only way in which its holiness can remain unimpaired is, that nothing shall be admitted into it that is at variance with the word of God.

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