As we continue through the Gospel of Luke, we’re approaching the time where Christ submits to the cross. He has now entered and wept over Jerusalem.
Then he entered the temple area and began driving out those who were selling. “It is written,” he said to them, “‘My house will be a house of prayer’; but you have made it ‘a den of robbers.'”
Luke 19:45-46 NIV
I believe this is a very important passage of Scripture. But so many times I’ve heard this used for unimportant issues.
The emphasis of this verse is not about whether the church should host a flea market or Christmas Bazaar. It’s not about book tables or bookstores.
I don’t think these are why the Holy Spirit placed this incident in the Bible. It’s deeper than these surface issues. I’m talking about the spiritual life of the believer.
Think about who we are in Christ. The Holy Spirit has taken up residence in our lives. We have now become His house.
Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.
1 Corinthians 6:19-20 NIV
I am a temple to the Holy Spirit. Think about it like the ancient Greek temples. My temple says Holy Spirit on the front.
What would you expect if you came to that temple? What if you entered it and saw a Star Trek Convention going on inside? You may question the priest about it.
“It’s only for this week.”
What if for the next few weeks, you visited this temple and saw a beauty pageant, a chili cook-off, and a real estate seminar.
You’d ask; is this a temple to the Holy Spirit or is it something else? With that thought in mind, reconsider what happened when Jesus overturned the tables of the money changers in the temple. I like John’s description.
To those who sold doves he said, “Get these out of here! How dare you turn my Father’s house into a market!”
His disciples remembered that it is written: “Zeal for your house will consume me.”
John 2:16-17 NIV
Notice the righteous anger that Christ displayed. What was it that aroused such an attitude? The disciples realized that Jesus was consumed by a zeal for the house of God.
When Christ told His disciples about the Holy Spirit, He said that He was sending “another counselor just like Me.” (John 14:26 – My paraphrase!) The difference is that the Holy Spirit lives in us. He lives permanently in His temple, our body. And, He has the same attitude as Christ.
Do we really get the point? We’re living in the Last Days. The Holy Spirit is starting to cleanse His temple. We need to submit to His program.
Remember – the Holy Spirit will not hurt His temple. But He will start to ruin that which would try and steal our affection. In my experience, I’d rather willingly give up something, than have the Lord remove it from my life.
What do we do?
Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.
Galatians 6:7-8 NIV
If you really want what the Holy Spirit desires, then sow to please the Spirit. He doesn’t say to summon up all your will power and live right. No! Simply submit to His plan and sow the Word and prayer. Spend time with the Spirit.
Question: What do you need to do to sow to please the Spirit?
© 2022 Nick Zaccardi