Is Your house Clean?

Our study in the Gospel of John has already proven to be challenging and enriching. Remember John’s purpose in writing this book:

He declares, “these have been written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name” (John 20:31).

The primary purposes, therefore, are two-fold: evangelistic and apologetic.1

John wants us to believe in Jesus. He has chosen seven signs (out of countless others Jesus performed, John 20:30) to support His thesis that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God. These past two weeks we witnessed the start of Jesus’s signs in John chapter 2. John began with a miracle of 

conversion (changing water into wine in John 2:1-12). Next, John shows Jesus with a work of cleansing (the cleansing of the temple in John 2:12-17). This is always how Jesus works in His people: conversion, then cleansing. You and I cannot possibly be clean enough to come to Jesus! We desperately need the intervention of God’s Holy Spirit to change us first.

And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest. But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.” (Ephesians 2:1–7)


What can dead people do? NOTHING!! We need Jesus to bring us to life. We need to be born again from on high (John 3:3). We need to be converted first. Conversion is that act of God whereby God enables sinners to experience His calling and drawing away from sin and toward Himself. Although conversion can be seen as a human act or decision, Scripture stresses that the work of God lies behind this human decision, guiding and motivating it.2 (See Acts 15:3; 26:18).

 It is only after this rebirth, or Conversion, does the cleansing come into play.

As Hebrews 12:6 reminds us,

“For those whom the Lord loves He disciplines, and He scourges every son whom He receives.” He adds (12:11), “All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness.” And so we should not regard His discipline lightly or faint when we are reproved by Him, but rather be subject to the Father of spirits and live(12:5, 9).

You see, just as Jesus was moved to a righteous anger (John 2:12-17) because of the offense of the Jews in the temple, He also is angered over the offense of our sin. The Jews in the first century had set up shop in the Temple courts. Specifically, they were in the Courtyard of the Gentiles. This grieved, even angered our Lord because in doing so, the Jews had become a stumbling block to the Gentiles. The selling & buying of animals inside the court of the Gentiles had made it nearly impossible for the Gentiles to worship the Lord in the Temple for Passover, as they were instructed to do so in the Law.

The Jews were therefore sending a not-so-subtle message to the Gentiles that they were not welcome in God’s House nor among God’s people. This angered Jesus because His plan included the Jews and the Gentiles. Provision had been made for the Gentiles in the out courts, but the Jews were hindering their worship of the Lord.

Thank God that His plan includes us as well. Thank God that, “

… now in Christ Jesus you who formerly were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For He Himself is our peace, who made both groups into one and broke down the barrier of the dividing wall, by abolishing in His flesh the enmity, which is the Law of commandments contained in ordinances, so that in Himself He might make the two into one new man, thus establishing peace, and might reconcile them both in one body to God through the cross, by it having put to death the enmity.” (Ephesians 2:13–16)

Today, we do not have to go to the temple, or even a temple to worship God. We ARE the temple!
In 1 Corinthians 3:16-17, Paul writes, “Do you not know that you are a temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? If any man destroys the temple of God, God will destroy him, for the temple of God is holy, and that is what you are.” The context indicates that Paul is speaking of Christians, of the church.

Considering His choosing of us to be His temple, it is good that we examine ourselves to make sure that our temple is clean… that we’re in the faith (2 Cor. 13:5). Here are a few questions to consider as we examine our “temples”:

  • Have I lost my first love for Christ (Rev. 2:4)?
  • Do I spend time with Him often in His Word (Psalm 119) and in prayer (1 Thess. 5:17)?
  • Am I actively seeking to grow in grace & in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ (2 Pet. 3:18; Phil 3:8-10)?
  • Do I seek to please Him with my thoughts, words, and deeds?
  • How are my relationships with others, especially with those whom I live (Matt. 22:39)?
  • Am I fervent in my love for others (1 Pet. 4:8)?
  • Do I deny myself and seek to build up others in love (Mark 8:34; 1 Cor. 8:1)?
  • Do I love gathering with His church (Heb. 10:25)?
  • Do I spend my time seeking first His kingdom and His righteousness (Matt. 6:33)?
  • Am I a conscientious steward of the resources that He has entrusted to me (Luke 16:10-13)?
  • Do I view myself as the Lord’s servant, seeking opportunities to be used by Him (Luke 17:10)?
  • Are there any hidden or open sins that I need to confess and forsake (1 John 1:9)?

Clean house, my friends! Do not procrastinate! Do it now! You are, after all, a new creature in Christ Jesus.

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.
” (2 Corinthians 5:17)

For His Glory,

Pastor Kevin