Do you ever look forward to “Spring cleaning?” I do! Really, at any time of year, isn’t it nice to take a fresh look at what you have in the house and get rid of things you don’t need? We accumulate things without realizing it, don’t we? Some things are tossed or donated because they do not fit the house anymore. Some clothes are given away because they aren’t worn anymore. Some furniture no longer serves the purpose as I brought new things in.
I realize now that we are always in a process, at least in my house, of revaluating what needs to be in the house. It often drives my husband crazy that I clean and organize so much! He cannot find things He needs. Oops, sorry sweetie!
In Matthew 21, Jesus did some evaluating and cleaning of His house, the temple. It was supposed to be a house of prayer, Jesus said, but instead of offering prayers to God, people were offering items, to make money for themselves.
It is written,” he said to them, “‘My house will be called a house of prayer,’ but you are making it ‘a den of robbers.’ Matthew 21:13 NIV
Those two scenarios seem quite opposite of each other, don’t they? A house of prayers or a den of robbers… One serves God and one serves self. Jesus thought so. That’s why He cleaned His house by ridding it of things that He did not want there. That meant the moneychangers had to go. He overturned the tables and drove them out. Then, once the temple was clean of all that clutter and selfishness, the blind and lame came to Him and He healed them.
Now that seems fitting for His house, I think, but the chief priest and teachers of the law were, the Bible says, INDIGNANT!
But when the chief priests and the teachers of the law saw the wonderful things he did and the children shouting in the temple courts, “Hosanna to the Son of David,” they were indignant. Matthew 21:15 NIV
Their anger confused me until I thought about it and researched a bit in the Bible. From what I can tell, the chief priests laid down the law and were the authority on what went on in the temple. And here was Jesus doing ‘wonderful’ things that were not approved by them.
I can see how they would be questioning Jesus’ authority to clean a temple without their approval or permission, but He was HEALING people. Surely they cared that people got healed and were amazed that He was doing it, right? Not exactly. They were mad that He was usurping their authority. It was all about them.
Does Jesus really need permission to do God’s work in His own house? I do not think so! Jesus did what needed to be done. He wanted a fresh cleaning of all the extra, un-necessary clutter that was keeping His house from being the house that it was meant to be. So should we all do in our hearts, the temple of the Holy Spirit.
Let’s do a little cleaning of our own, throwing out the clutter, selfishness and things we do not need in His house, our heart. If we have trouble parting with some of it, no worries. Just ask Jesus to turn the tables over and run out the bad, as He sees fit. Then, let’s get to God’s business at hand. When our hearts are clean, we have plenty of room for God to do God’s work:)
May you have a blessed day in the Lord. Remember He loves you so much!