Then his disciples remembered this prophecy from the Scriptures: “Passion for God’s house will consume me.” (John 2:17)
Daily Bible Reading: Exodus 37:1 – 39:31
Relate: The word is ‘akal. Passion for God’s house will consume me. It will ‘akal me. The word means to devour. In the Tanakh (the Old Testament) the word appears over 800 ties and with only a couple exceptions it is translated as some variation of eat, feast, devour, or consume. I think if we were to look for a modern day metaphor I would say, “Passion for your house is eating me alive.” As a footnote in the NLT it offers an alternate translation, “Concern for your house will be my undoing.” I think this view, considering the course Jesus’ life will take, has more merit than it would first appear.
When I’ve heard this story preached it is usually along the lines of how much Jesus loves us. After all, Paul calls us the Temple, and God’s love for us drove Him all the way to the cross. All this is true and I don’t want to take anything away from those who view this scripture that way. But also, since Jesus just literally cleared out the Temple and He was most likely using His angry voice while doing so, I think we need to understand how important, up to that time, the literal Temple really was. Last year I did a three part series on the Temple: Presence, Praises, and Promise. They only begin to explain the symbolic importance of the Temple. I can very well understand why Jesus would be deeply concerned if that symbolism was being hidden, blurred, and tarnished. What they were doing was tarnishing a very real picture of who He was.
React: Do I do the same? If people who know I am a Christian see me cutting corners to make a little more money, am I tarnishing a picture of who Christ is to them? If I say God is truth, and then get caught in a lie, am I blurring His image? If I have an opportunity to share my testimony of the grace of God but remain silent, am I crowding out His voice? Does the same zeal, that same passion, that was in Christ dwell in me? Is it eating me up inside? Or am I getting fat on the things of this world instead?
God, let a zeal for You consume Me. Let a concern for the things of You be my undoing. I want to know You more. I want to glorify You in everything I say and do. Let me never be an impediment preventing people from seeking and finding You. Help me to be Your reflection in my world around me. In everything, be glorified.