The Journey to The Cross, March 20: Preaching In the Temple
Have you ever wondered what Jesus did between the time he rode into Jerusalem on Sunday and the Passover celebration Thursday night? He was quite literally down to his last few days before His death – and within two months of when he would ascend back into Heaven. If we knew for sure our time on earth was limited, we would probably be trying to fulfill some sort of “bucket list”. So what was important to Him during that time?
You. Me. The people.
He spent those days teaching in the Temple. Even though hatred was steadily building.
Even though the religious leaders were actively looking to trap Him anyway they could.
Even though he was down to his final few hours of daily fellowship with his closest friends. He thought of you.
Some of what He did over those few days were a sort of wrap up to His earthly ministry. He cleansed the temple of the cheating merchants and healed those who came to Him there. He protected the children who were praising Him and He countered the wily questions of the religious leaders trying to trap Him.
But for much of his final days of teaching, He taught about the things that are yet to come. The last days. His return. Interspersed with that is very practical teaching about how to do life here and what to expect in heaven. Marriage and giving in marriage in heaven. The difference between faith in Him and faith in my own good works. And how to give sacrificially like the widow who put her last two coins in the offering while Jesus watched.
He thought of you. And me. Even in His very last hours. Always teaching. Always pointing to the Father. Always loving the sinner while hating sin.
I wonder what I would do if I knew my time on earth was coming to a close? I hope I would think of you, just like Jesus did.
Adoration: Praise God for the teachings Jesus gave us while He was here, showing us how to live and how to love. Consider praying back to God David’s words in Psalm 119:11-12 (AMP): “Your word I have treasured and stored in my heart, that I may not sin against You. Blessed and reverently praised are You, O Lord; teach me Your statutes.”
Confession: Ask God to point out any areas in your life where you are resting on your own righteousness instead of His. Confess to Him that your good works are nowhere near enough to save you.
Thanksgiving: Thank Him for the saving grace He has shown you. Consider using Paul’s words in Ephesians 2:8-9 (NLT) as a thanksgiving prayer: Thank You, God that You “saved me by Your grace when I believed. And I can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from You, God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things I have done, so none of us can boast about it. For I am God’s masterpiece. He has created me anew in Christ Jesus, so I can do the good things he planned for me long ago.”
Supplication: Pray for those you have invited to Easter services to understand the grace that God has toward them. Pray that they would know their need for Him and that they would surrender all to Him.