As we continue looking at events in the life of Christ that set a wonderful example for us of Scriptural love. In this devotional, we will see Christ’s hatred of sin on display…
The Characteristic of Scriptural Love: Does Not Plan Or Desire EvilChrist, the perfectly holy One, hated the commission of sin. We can clearly see this in the account of Christ cleansing the temple of those who were using the worship of His Father for personal monetary gain…
14) And found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting: 15) And when he had made a scourge of small cords, he drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changers' money, and overthrew the tables; 16) And said unto them that sold doves, Take these things hence; make not my Father's house an house of merchandise. 17) And his disciples remembered that it was written, The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up. (John 2:14-17)
What was the sin that was taking place in this account? “found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting:”
In other words, there were men who were making an unjust profit from the sale of animals to be used as sacrifices to Jehovah and from exchanging foreign money to that which was acceptable as an offering to Jehovah. Both of these “services” were being offered to those who had to travel long distances and in most cases came from outside of Israel.
Please note… Christ was not angered at making the animals and proper currency available to those who arrived to worship. His anger was pointed towards taking advantage of the faithful worshippers of Jehovah by making an unjust gain from these transactions.
In other words, they had turned a place for true worship into a “house of merchandise” How did Christ display His anger? It was through the exercise of physical force as He drove the exchangers out of the temple area… “And when he had made a scourge of small cords, he drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changers' money, and overthrew the tables” This event had been prophesied in the Old Testament scriptures in Psalms 69:7-11.
This Scripture is not only the historical account of the sufferings of King David, but it is also a prophetic Scripture revealing to us truths concerning the ministry of Christ during His first coming…
“Because for thy sake I have borne reproach; shame hath covered my face.I am become a stranger unto my brethren, and an alien unto my mother's children.For the zeal of thine house hath eaten me up; and the reproaches of them that reproached thee are fallen upon me. When I wept, [and chastened] my soul with fasting, that was to my reproach.I made sackcloth also my garment; and I became a proverb to them.” (Psalms 69:7-11)
Our Lesson To Be Learned:What a tremendous display of Godly anger! Folks, don’t ever think (not even for a moment) that all anger is wrong. We are to consistently hold a Godly anger against the acts of sin that are taking place all around us. Then, we are to allow this anger to motivate us to stay away from these sins and take a stand against them. This is the principle Paul presented to us in Ephesians 4:26… “Be ye angry, and sin not:…”
How is this type of anger a display of love?
1. It shows our love, and respect, towards our Lord as we recognize His attitude towards sin and the harm that sin does to His glory and the cause of Christ.
2. It shows our love for others, as we recognize the harmful effects of sin in the lives of those we love.
This anger should also motivate us to earnestly desire and fervently pray that “Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as [it is] in heaven.” (Matthew 6:10) What a day that will be, when we are dwelling in New Jerusalem with our Lord on the New Earth and know that sin, and its effects, will be permanently done away.
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