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Day 27: He walked up to my desk, extremely upset…

September 21, 2018

1Luke 19: Tuesday of the final week of Jesus’ Earthly life.  He came to the Temple on Monday in the midst of great fanfare by the people, but Christ ignored the crowd enough to personally witness the corruption in the courtyard of this magnificent place of worship.   Corrupt money-changers, sneaky priests, business dealings within a stone’s throw of the Holy of Holies…

The next morning, Jesus came back, and He meant to deal with this.  Oh, and did He ever:

“He entered the temple and began to cast out those who were selling, saying to them, ‘It is written, “And My house shall be a house of prayer,” but you have made it a robber’s den.’ ” 

However, He then changed gears and did something we often overlook in this passage:

“He then began teaching daily in the temple, with … all the people hanging upon His words.”

Wait.  What?

Hanging on His words?”

Yes.  That’s not a trick choice of words to be artsy with the language.  In the Koine Greek it says exactly this:

ek-kre’-mä-mäi   Definition:  “To listen so closely so as to hang upon the lips of a speaker.”

Jesus was not telling enjoyable stories about His childhood or a funny thing that happened on the way to the synagogue when He was a teenager.  He was getting to the heart of the matter.  He was showing in His words that He was God’s true King and Son, the long-awaited Messiah.  

He did not arrive and try to whip up the crowd to fight the Roman army’s Fort Antonia, nor did He go after the house of Pilate.  He didn’t even mention the Romans at all. 

He openly condemned the religion of the day.  He totally dismantled the idea of following a pedantic liturgical walk; rather He pointed fervently to the true worship of the Lord God.

Stunning words.  Shocking words.

True words.

Just as He had said in John 4, as He spoke to the Samaritan woman: “God seeks true worshipers who worship Him in Spirit and in truth.”

The people were thrown.

And …

… they loved it.  They hung on every word.

Popular opinion?  Of course not.  It would foment the leaders of the day into violence.

Necessary words?  Of course.  The people needed to see the Light.

In class this week, we had talked about sin and the danger of Hell.  It was not a pleasant lesson, but we became very Scripture-intensive.

As class ended, the sophomore young man sitting in the back came up and cracked his knuckles on my desk.  He was not smiling.

“I’ve been needing to hear this,” he said.  “I have been wondering about this for some time and I …. well, I really needed to hear this.”  He promptly turned on his heel and headed out into the hallway.

It’s not the stories. It’s not the emotions.  It’s the true, powerful Scripture of the Truth.

May we get a spiritual grip and hang on every word of this sacred Book.

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