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Summary: Sermon/outline of Jesus' cleansing of the temple in Matthew chapter 21 and His triumphal entry.

CLEANSING THE HOUSE OF GOD

Text: Matt. 21:12 - 17

Intro: In our scripture reading this morning we pick up at the entry of Jesus into Jerusalem where He is riding on a donkey’s colt. The crowds have cut down the branches of trees and put them down in front of Him. This was done, the scripture says, in fulfillment of Zech.9:9 which says: 9Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.

Jesus’ triumphal entry into the holy city marks the beginning of the events of the trial, crucifixion and resurrection of our LORD JESUS. Please turn with me to Matt. 21 and we will begin reading in verse 8.

I. Jesus’ zeal for the House of God is without bounds.

Ps. 69:9 9For the zeal of thine house hath eaten me up; and the reproaches of them that reproached thee are fallen upon me.

A. Threw out all that bought and sold in God’s House.

B. Notice that He gave them no quarter.

1. He didn’t say you have an hour to get out…or thirty minutes or even a second for that matter.

2. He threw them out without regard for anything they thought or said.

C. Jesus said my House shall be called a House of Prayer.

1. There is no better place for us to go for help, wisdom, encouragement and provision than to God through prayer.

a. When we rely on what our government can do for us, then we will get the provision and covering of our government.

b. When we rely on organizations and special interest groups to take care of our community, then we will get what they have to offer.

c. When we rely on ourselves, we get what we can do.

2. But when we rely on God, we get what God can do. That folks is why JESUS said, “My house shall be called a house of prayer.”

a. I believe God…we as a church must recommit ourselves to making this house, His House and to making it a “house of prayer.”

b. God will bless that.

D. Some wanted to know “who is this man?

1. Some that didn’t know Him at all said “this is Jesus the prophet from Nazareth.”

a. They were partly right, Jesus did prophesy.

b. And he did live in Nazareth for a while

c. But His residence was heaven.

2. They had made God’s House “a den of thieves.”

a. Today God’s House is defiled by a den of thieves. Exactly like God said through the prophet Malachi

a1. Too often folks come to be seen rather than to meet with God.

a2. Too often we rob God of the worship He deserves. Mal. 2:1

a3. Too often we rob God of tithes and offerings. Mal. 3:8

3. The priests, scribes and some of the people were more concerned with themselves than with knowing God.

a. They wanted the glory that belonged to God.

b. They wouldn’t take the time to know God, a costly mistake.

c. Their lives were too busy and after all they wanted to have their own happiness.

Illus.: I heard a joke this week I’d like to share with you. A young man in a dimly lit restaurant leaned over to the lady at the table next to him and said, “Hey, would you like to hear a very funny blonde joke?”

The lady replied, “I’m 6’3” blonde and I’m a personal trainer at the local gym. The lady sitting on my left is 6’4” blonde and a world champion in tae kwon do. The lady on my right just happens to be 6’2”, blonde and an Olympic weight lifter. Are you sure that you want to tell that joke.”

“No, the man replied, I don’t want to have to explain it 3 times.”

4. Too many of the folks in the pews of God’s House today say they know Jesus but they don’t love God enough to follow His commandments.

a. They don’t love their neighbor as much as they do their dog, much less themselves.

b. Brothers and Sisters those folks can expect God to clean house.

II. The blind and the lame came to JESUS

A. God’s Word says here that HE healed them.

1. They came to God’s House, humbly seeking out God.

2. They didn’t come acting better than anyone else.

3. They didn’t come to show others how good they were…they came seeking Jesus.

a. Oh if today we would just come seeking JESUS.

B. When the leaders of the temple, the chief priests and the teachers of the law saw:

1. The wonderful things that he did.

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