Driven by love


Matthew 21 (The passion translation)

Jesus in the Temple

12  Upon entering Jerusalem Jesus went directly into the temple area and drove

away all the merchants who were buying and selling their goods. He overturned

the tables of the money changers and the stands of those selling doves. 13  And he

said to them, “My dwelling place will be known as a house of prayer, but you have

made it into a hangout for thieves!”

Yes, what a fantastic passage of scripture as we celebrate the Christmas season.

Truthfully, all passages of scripture are Christmas passages. Though we tend to

forget about concept of “Emmanuel God with us” once December and the

holidays have passed. The reason God came to earth in the form of a man named

Jesus of Nazareth (who was fully God and fully man), was simply because he

desired to be intimate with his creation. It’s the same reason Jesus caused such a

ruckus in the temple in Matthew 21. He entered the temple and saw that it was

not functioning as a house for God and man to commune, and very simply drove

out anything that was counter productive to that point. He was not filled with

uncontrollable rage, he did not lose his temper to the point of violence. No that’s

not Gods character. He was making a point. That the temple, which was

established as place for God’s people to assemble around the father’s presence,

had been overrun and infiltrated by merchants with an opposing agenda. The

point is that God wants to come into every place of our lives that is not saturated

by him, flip it upside down and drive out whatever has gotten in the way, so that

we are restored to what we were created for. Love is always Gods agenda. Prayer

is a response to love and his presence. Jesus was quoting Isaiah 56, and also

declaring the cry of the Father’s heart. “I want to be intimate with my people!” I

believe that this is what is happening this Christmas season. God desires his

people and is using the trials of this last year to reprioritize in our homes and

churches what actually matters. His presence! When we gather, we are not simply

gathering to fill a time slot in our week with religious activities. We gather to pray

and engage with our creator. This is a glorious revelation. Don’t sacrifice it by

making prayer another box on your spiritual check list. Its how we as believers

interact with our Heavenly Father, he gave up everything to be with us, and is

fighting for us right now. Its our job to let him in, so he can rearrange, flip and

drive out whatever is necessary, so he becomes Emmanuel in our lives. Join me in

this season of intimate prayer.


Love and Merry Christmas,

Pastor John

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