As I was reading today’s devotion from David Jeremiah’s Hope for Today, an interesting sentence stood out to me: “Jesus’ anger was righteous indignation at how God was being dishonored by the Pharisees, and how the temple was being used.”
While this specific story was regarding Jesus turning over the tables in the temple because of the people making it a marketplace, I can’t help but wonder if there’s an analogous meaning to this as well.
The Bible tells us that all humans were created in God’s image (Genesis 1:27). Additionally, our bodies are the temple where the Holy Spirit dwells if we are born-again Christians (our bodies are not our own because we were bought with a price – I Corinthians 6:19-20), which got me thinking.
If Jesus would get that angry on one ocassion, how much more must God’s anger be kindled when he sees people dishonoring themselves and others? The obvious sins here would be rape, molestation, physical abuse, human and sex trafficking, murder, etc.
But what about the actions we enter into without even realizing that what we are doing is considered dishonoring or using ourselves or others? Are we frivolous in our sexual activity in the name of “my body, my rights?” Do we exasperate and/or provoke our children with our constant yelling and setting too many expectations in the name of “discipline” (Colossians 3:21; Ephesians 6:4 and 4:15-19). Do we manipulate people into doing things our way thus violating their own free will of thought and action?
And what about our places of worship? Are they truly a sacred place to seek God? Are they open and welcoming to all people? Are people allowed to struggle and question and doubt in an environment that is safe and free from judgement and disdain? Is it free from the commercialization of our society, or is it selling its own wares in the name of “ministry?”
What can we begin doing today to upset the dishonorable tables we have slowly, over time, allowed ourselves to setup in our hearts and minds? What can we do to pitch what we thought were “profits” from the wares on those tables and instead allow God to take his rightful place again on the throne of our lives?