It’s Day 83!!
Yesterday we talked about JESUS AND THE LAW
Today we are talking about JESUS AND THE TEMPLE
We have to understand the IMPORTANCE OF THE TEMPLE
The Temple isn’t JUST a place of worship
To say JUST A PLACE OF WORSHIP is a massive understatement
It would be like The Temple is not only St Peter’s Basilica
The symbol of the image of where Catholics worship
It is also like the White House
In the sense that governance would happen at the Temple
It is also like Wall Street
In the sense that commerce would happen and be regulated in the Temple
It was ALL CONNECTED
Your whole life as a Jewish person would be connected in some way, shape, or form, to the Temple
The Temple was the PRIMARY PLACE OF WORSHIP OF GOD
It was the ONLY PLACE where you could offer up a sacrifice to God in Jewish life
You could pray ANYWHERE
You could read Scripture and study Scripture in the Synagogue
WHICH IS INCREDIBLE!!
It was THE TEMPLE where the priests were
As such, that’s where the sacrifices were
As such, that is where worship was
Jesus comes along and makes some comparisons between HIMSELF AND THE TEMPLE
Jesus is the FULFILLMENT OF THE LAW
Jesus is also the FULFILLMENT OF THE TEMPLE
The Temple of His body would be struck down and raised up again in three days
Remember, the Temple is not only the place of God’s presence
The Temple is the place of WORSHIP
THAT IS ABSOLUTELY CRITICAL FOR US TO UNDERSTAND!!
To open our hearts and minds, we just pray to our Father!!
There we have it!!
JESUS AND THE TEMPLE
Paragraph 583 highlights the fact that the Temple is CRITICALLY IMPORTANT in Jesus’ life
Paragraph 583 says, “Like the prophets before him Jesus expressed the deepest respect for the Temple in Jerusalem.”
THAT HAS TO BE SO CLEAR FOR US!!
Remember when we read the prophets in BIBLE IN A YEAR?? (www.thebibleinayearstudyguide.com 😃)
Roughly a year or two ago!!
How often did the prophets lament over the destruction of the Temple?
Remember how often the prophets would point to worship in the Temple?
THIS IS SO CRITICALLY IMPORTANT!!
Paragraph 584 says, “Jesus went up to the Temple as the privileged place of encounter with God.”
What was the Temple for Jesus?
Paragraph 584 continues, “For [Jesus], the Temple was the dwelling of his Father, a house of prayer, and he was angered that its outer court had become a place of commerce. He drove merchants out of it because of jealous love for his Father: ‘You shall not make my Father’s house a house of trade’...‘Zeal for your house will consume me.’”
We all know about how Jesus drove out the money changers from the Temple
ZEAL FOR YOUR HOUSE WILL CONSUME ME
Why is that?
Because Jesus recognized that this is the DWELLING OF HIS FATHER
The presence of God would abide in the Temple
Not only is the presence of God important here
It is also the place where PRAYER AND WORSHIP would happen
THIS IS SO REMARKABLY IMPORTANT!!
If we think about this in two ways
The Temple was known as the place of worship
It was known as “the White House” for the People of Israel for governance
It was also “Wall Street”, a place of commerce and economics
Above all, it was a place where God would abide and a place where God was worshiped
THIS IS ABSOLUTELY CRITICAL!!
If God were to leave the Temple then the people WOULD CEASE TO EXIST
Their reason for being WOULD CEASE TO EXIST
We have talked about this SO MANY TIMES in 83 days
Why did God do any of this?
Why did God make this world in the first place?
Why did God make human beings?
Why did God reveal Himself at all to us?
SO THAT WE CAN SHARE IN HIS OWN DIVINE LIFE!!
SO THAT WE CAN HAVE A RELATIONSHIP WITH HIM!!
So here’s the place of HIS DWELLING
Here’s the place of HIS PRESENCE
Here’s the place in which when we worship Him in the place of His presence we are drawn FURTHER AND FURTHER INTO A RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD
A RELATIONSHIP OF OBEDIENCE
A RELATIONSHIP OF LOVE
A RELATIONSHIP OF TRUST
This is why Jesus is highlighting the reality of the importance of The Temple
Paragraph 585 says, “On the threshold of his passion Jesus announced the coming destruction of this splendid building…he announced a sign of the last days, which were to begin with his own Passover.”
This Temple would be DESTROYED
There would not remain ONE STONE UPON ANOTHER STONE
THIS IS REMARKABLE FOR SO MANY REASONS!!
But here is just ONE SIMPLE REASON
The Temple was the place of WORSHIP
The Temple was the PRIVILEGED PLACE OF ENCOUNTER
Now, obviously GOD IS EVERYWHERE
Obviously we can encounter God ANYWHERE
AT THE SAME TIME…
A PRIVILEGED PLACE OF ENCOUNTER
A PRIVILEGED PLACE OF WORSHIP
The ONLY PLACE to offer sacrifice
Jesus says in the Gospel of John, “The hour is coming when neither on this mountain (when He was talking to the woman from Samaria) nor in Jerusalem (at the Temple) will you worship the Father.”
There is a NEW AND ETERNAL KIND OF WORSHIP that Jesus is going to institute
Jesus’ prophecy about the destruction of the Temple DID COME TO PASS in 70 AD
The Romans responded to a Jewish rebellion
They encircled the city
They besieged it
They DESTROYED the Temple
They killed EVERY JEW IN JERUSALEM
Christians escaped because Jesus prophesied this, “When you see these things happening, run to the hills. Get out of the city.”
This is not a HAPPY remarkable
In the midst of this grief and devastation the worship in Jerusalem HAS CEASED TO EXIST
We’ve been talking the last couple of days how Jesus FULFILLS THE LAW
Jesus FULFILLS THE TEMPLE
Jesus FULFILLS TEMPLE WORSHIP
Because the night before He died, Jesus gave us the New and Eternal Covenant
The night before He died, Jesus gave us the worship HE DESIRED
When He said, “Take this, all of you, and eat of it. This IS my Body.”
“Take this, all of you, and drink from it. This IS the chalice of my Blood. The Blood of the New and Eternal Covenant. Do this in remembrance of me.”
Remarkably, Jesus presaged the fact that ALL WORSHIP and ALL SACRIFICE would cease to exist with the cessation of the Temple.
The worship He asked for in the Mass would go THROUGHOUT THE ENTIRE WORLD
Eucharist means “THANKSGIVING”
In the ancient Jewish Temple they had many reasons for worship
You would offer a sacrifice for REPENTANCE
You would offer a sacrifice for SALVATION
You would offer a sacrifice for an offering of GRATITUDE
You would offer your TODAH sacrifice
You would offer your sacrifice for SO MANY THINGS
At one point the rabbis said, “In the age of the Messiah all sacrifices would cease except for one.”
That sacrifice would be the TODAH sacrifice, which would endure FOR ALL ETERNITY
TODAH in Hebrew means “sacrifice of thanks”
A THANKS OFFERING!!
Eucharist means “THANKSGIVING”
Those rabbis were PROPHETIC
They announced that ALL sacrifices at the Temple would cease
EXCEPT FOR ONE!!
THAT IS THE SACRIFICE WE HAVE BEEN GIVEN BY JESUS AT THE LAST SUPPER!!
THAT SACRIFICE OF THANKSGIVING!!
THAT WE OFFER EVERY SINGLE DAY AROUND THE WORLD
WE GET TO BE PART OF THIS!!
Because Jesus is the FULFILLMENT OF THE TEMPLE
Not only the Temple where God’s Presence would abide
Jesus is also the FULFILLMENT OF THE SACRIFICE that would happen in the Temple
WHICH IS INCREDIBLE!!
WE HAVE BEEN INVITED INTO THIS!!
YOU HAVE BEEN INVITED INTO THIS!!
SO HAVE I!!
So we continue to pray, “God help me. Help us all to recognize that you are truly present in the Eucharist. That you are the one who abides with us. Emmanuel. God with us. You have Tabernacled among us. You have made your home among us. And right now, even now, not only do we have your Holy Spirit. We do have your Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity in EVERY CATHOLIC CHURCH. And we offer that sacrifice up at EVERY CATHOLIC MASS. SO WE GIVE YOU THANKS AND PRAISE!!”
Fr. Mike is so grateful FOR YOU!!
Fr. Mike gives God thanks and praise FOR YOU!!
Fr. Mike is praying FOR YOU!!
Please pray for Fr. Mike and for each other!!
I cannot WAIT to see you tomorrow!!