Easter Devotional Series
Day 2: Monday in the Temple
“Passion for your house has consumed me, and the insults of those who insult you have fallen on me.” Psalm 69:9 (NLT)
“Jesus entered the Temple and began to drive out all the people buying and selling animals for sacrifice. He knocked over the tables of the money changers and the chairs of those selling doves. He said to them, ‘The Scriptures declare, ‘My Temple will be called a house of prayer,’ but you have turned it into a den of thieves!’ ” Matthew 21:12-13 (NLT)
Clutter tends to sneak up on you. You don’t plan on stockpiling boxes of unwanted items. It happens gradually. Before you know it, your drawers, closets, and home are filled with stuff you don’t need; and that clutter starts to take time and energy away from the things that matter most.
The same principle is true of your heart.
In Matthew 21:12-13, we read about how Jesus overturned tables and kicked people out of the Lord’s Temple. At first glance, this doesn’t sound like Jesus. Why would a man who was so compassionate and tender-hearted toward children, the sick, and the disenfranchised go to such extreme measures?
In the temple, money changers would exchange currency for people coming from other countries so they could buy the necessary supplies to make their offerings to the Lord and celebrate Passover as instructed in the Old Testament. But what ended up happening is the money changers were cheating people in the exchange rates and making a profit at the expense of others, many of whom were struggling to make ends meet.
This practice was detestable to Jesus. It not only dishonored God, but it dishonored His people. Several of God’s people prophesied Jesus would do what He did in Matthew 21 hundreds of years before He was even born. (Psalm 69:9, Isaiah 56:7, Jeremiah 7:11)
Jesus cleared the money changers out of the temple to make space for people to encounter God and experience His blessing in their lives.
What do you need to clear out of your life, so you have more space for God in your life?
Is there a sin in your life that needs to be confessed? Is there someone you need to seek forgiveness from or extend forgiveness to? Is there a relationship that’s pulling you away from the Lord that you need to end? Do you need to cut some things out of your schedule or cross some things off your to-do list, so you have more time to be in the presence of Jesus and engage in the practices that draw you closer to Him?
God doesn’t reside in a temple anymore. He resides in the hearts of those who have given their lives to Him. In 1 Corinthians 6:19, the Apostle Paul wrote, “Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself.”
Don’t let the money changers of our world—whether it’s busyness, sin, a bad habit, an addictive behavior, possessions, desires, or a relationship—set up shop in your heart. Let Jesus turn the tables over in your heart so He can bring God’s best to your life.
Soak and Reflect
“Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.” - 1 Peter 5:7 (NLT)
Heavenly Father, thank you for always caring about what’s going on in my life. Lord, I’m feeling weighed down by _______________. Help me to cast this care at your feet. Take the worry and anxiety I feel over this. Fill me with your peace and love today. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.