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The Passover of the Jews was near, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. In the temple he found people selling cattle, sheep, and doves, and the money changers seated at their tables. Making a whip of cords, he drove all of them out of the temple, both the sheep and the cattle. He also poured out the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. He told those who were selling the doves, “Take these things out of here! Stop making my Father’s house a marketplace!” His disciples remembered that it was written, “Zeal for your house will consume me.” The Jews then said to him, “What sign can you show us for doing this?” Jesus answered them, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” The Jews then said, “This temple has been under construction for forty-six years, and will you raise it up in three days?” But he was speaking of the temple of his body. After he was raised from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this; and they believed the scripture and the word that Jesus had spoken.
The Place to Be
When I was in high school, there was a pizza place where we’d hang out after basketball games. Now I remember that later, it was called Milton’s, but I can’t remember the name back in the early seventies. Still I know it was the place to be on a Friday or Saturday nights, because there’s where we could meet and hang out with friends.
And, in a sense, that’s how the Jews viewed the Temple in Jerusalem. You see, they saw it as the place where they could meet and commune with God, because that’s where he lived. And for that reason, it was the place where people came to make sacrifices, knowing that they could never be closer to the Lord than there before the altar in the Temple. In a profoundly spiritual sense, for the children of Israel, their Temple was really the place to be, at least if you wanted to hang out with God.
But I’ll tell you, that’s not the place anymore, because a building of stone and mortar has been replace by a person, namely Jesus Christ. You see, he’s now the place where we meet God and experience his presence and his love. But not only that, Jesus is the place where God meets us, because through Christ, God understands our pains and joys, our pleasures and frustrations, our hopes and fears. In other words, Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is now truly the place to be.