My house shall be a house of prayer ...
And he entered the temple and began to drive out those who sold, saying to them, “It is written, ‘My house shall be a house of prayer,’ but you have made it a den of robbers.” And he was teaching daily in the temple. The chief priests and the scribes and the principal men of the people were seeking to destroy him, but they did not find anything they could do, for all the people were hanging on his words.
I think that those who combine commerce and religious activities need to exercise caution so as not to incur the reaction that these, who sold things in the outer courts of the temple, received from the Lord. I am not saying that churches need to shut down their coffee shops or their book stores but I am saying that there is a danger in the rationalizations that are sometimes required to bring money into religious organizations like churches.
The message was so radical. It is no wonder that "all the people were hanging on his words". The imagination of these must have been so captivated as Jesus spoke of the temple being "a house of prayer". The Israelis had long gotten used to the religious treadmill that the religious elders had them on. Then along came Jesus, driving out the money changers and animal retailers, changing the temple into a place where people could pray and meet God.
Help our churches dear Lord to be prayerful places. May many find you this week because people prayed together.