S (Scripture): John 2:13 Now the Jewish feast of Passover was near, so Jesus went up to Jerusalem.
14 He found in the temple courts those who were selling oxen and sheep and doves, and the money changers sitting at tables. 15 So he made a whip of cords and drove them all out of the temple courts, with the sheep and the oxen. He scattered the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. 16 To those who sold the doves he said, “Take these things away from here! Do not make my Father’s house a marketplace!” 17 His disciples remembered that it was written, “Zeal for your house will devour me.”
18 So then the Jewish leaders responded, “What sign can you show us, since you are doing these things?” 19 Jesus replied, “Destroy this temple and in three days I will raise it up again.” 20 Then the Jewish leaders said to him, “This temple has been under construction for forty-six years, and are you going to raise it up in three days?” 21 But Jesus was speaking about the temple of his body.
O (Observation): Jesus was demanding that the structure set up for worship be overturned! No animals for sacrifice? How can one worship properly? How can one be in the presence of God without a sacrifice?
Notice that Jesus isn’t so much upset with the money changers in this gospel. He seems more concerned with the whole idea of sacrifices needed in order to be in God’s presence.
Jesus challenges the leaders of the church to accept that Jesus himself IS God’s presence on earth!!! He says to the Jewish leaders: “Destroy this temple and in three days I will raise it up again.” The purpose of the Temple was for God’s presence to be made real on earth. Now, Jesus will fulfill that purpose. God is now accessible through the person of Jesus. And once Jesus is ascended…access to God’s presence spans all time and space.
(Of course, God has always been accessible… just not in our human understanding.)
A (Application): I don’t think access to the Lord is an issue for us, is it? I think most people today believe that we can all access God. I think today’s trouble is that we don’t always see God in the world. So…that drives us to places of worship, where we see God in bread and wine, water and Word.
But the whole point of Jesus is to help people – right where they are – to know and to be God’s presence on earth. In your place of work, at home, and also at church, we have access to God…because God is not limited to a building. This is the fulfillment of Jeremiah’s promise that God’s Law would be on our lips and in our hearts.
So…we do have access to God…right now…right where you are. Seek God’s wisdom this day. Let your actions reflect the access to God that you are blessed with. You are not going through this journey alone.
When do you most fully feel like you have access to God?
P (Prayer): Lord, we thank you for giving us access to your Father. We are so blessed! Amen.