Monday, April 6, 2009

an house of merchandise...

Much has been written of the purging of the moneychangers, and for good reason. It has such profound implications theologically, politically and socially. Rev. Tilden reminds us in today's Leaflet that the the first temple that needs scourging by us is us.

PURGING THE TEMPLE (Scripture Readings)

"AND Jesus went into the temple, and began to cast out them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves ;
And would not suffer that any man should carry any vessel through the temple.
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 changer's money, and overthrew the tables;
And said unto them that sold doves, Take these things hence; make not my Father's house an house of merchandise.
And he taught, saying unto them, Is it not written, My house shall be called of all nations the house of prayer? but ye have made it a den of thieves.
And the blind and the lame came to him in the temple; and he healed them.
And when the chief priests and scribes saw the wonderful things that he did, and the children crying in the temple, and saying, Hosanna to the son of David; they were sore displeased,
And said unto him, Hearest thou what these say? And Jesus saith unto them, Yea; have ye never read, Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast perfected praise ?
And he left them, and went out of the city into Bethany ; and he lodged there.
Malt. xxi. Mark xi. John ii.

Passion Week of Human Life (Tilden's Meditation)

"WE are in the city now, but it is not the Jerusalem of our hope, nor from above. The Palm branches lie withered by the way-side. We see a work of purification before us, not in the city, but in our souls. It is not the old temple built by Solomon, but the new temple of our hearts, built by God and for the Holy Ghost, that needs purifying now. Sheep and oxen are in the House of Prayer; moneychangers are turning it into a place of traffic. The animal is usurping the spiritual. We need to hear the prophetic voices of the children still crying, " Hosanna," in the Temple. The scourge we need, to drive the appetites and passions out of our sacred places, is not made of hemp, but heroism; a heroism that is valiant in the conscious aid of an Invisible Arm. The moral sentiments must be quickened, conscience voiced, faith stimulated, hope brightened, selfishness driven out by self- denial, and the Father's House purified for the Father's service. " Know ye that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?"

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