Cleansing The Temple

Cleanse The Temple by Kirk Hunt

Then Jesus went into the temple of God and drove out all those who bought and sold in the temple, and overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who sold doves. And He said to them, “It is written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer,’ but you have made it a ‘den of thieves.’”

Matthew 21:12-13 NKJV

Please read also:
Luke 19:45-48
Matthew 21:12-15
Mark 11:15-18
John 2:13-16

Jesus drove out the money changers. And the animal sellers. He cleansed the Temple with violent (intense, turbulent, furious and likely destructive) action.

Scripture does not report that anyone was killed or wounded, so some argue that Jesus was not “truly” violent. Men in mid-transaction left money and merchandise and fled. I doubt that a polite request was the reason they left so suddenly.

Many Bible scholars and historians assert that Jesus’ disruption of the commerce happening on the Temple grounds is the trigger event for His crucifixion. The High Priest and the elite leadership decided that Jesus had to die, because of the money. Real action that accomplishes something will make enemies.

Jesus reacted to injustice (theft) against faithful Jewish pilgrims plus violation of the sanctity of the Temple. People should have been praying in reverent quiet. Instead, the Temple was a common swap meet.

Circumstances will not change until you take action. The action you take will upset someone. Are you pleasing them or pleasing God?

Think: Righting an injustice, like cleansing the Temple, may take forceful action.

Pray: “Lord, give me the courage to uphold Your righteousness and justice.”

Copyright © June 2020, Kirk Hunt

This devotional is brought to you courtesy of CadreMen Press. You can purchase a copy of Blessed and Blessing: Devotionals For Gospel Champions from your favorite bookseller or directly from CadreMen Press.

Love One Another

Love One Another By Kirk Hunt

Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.

1 John 4:11 NKJV

 

“Love one another.”  Too often, even God’s people make it more complicated than it needs to be.  Care for each other.  Make sure folk have enough.  Inconvenience yourself (if a little) for someone struggling just to survive.

 

John did not invent this commandment on his own.  Jesus Himself ordered us (see John 13:34) to love one another.  After telling us to care for, minister to and support others, Jesus did not fold His hands.  Instead He went to the Garden of Gethsemane and started His walk to the Cross.

 

Out of care for our future, Jesus endured His trial by Pilate.  Because of His concern for men, then and now, Jesus allowed His public scourging.  Out of love for generations yet to be born, Jesus died on the Cross.  Perhaps you could pay just a little bit more for those who have little or nothing?

 

Will some of the folks you care for only take advantage?  Probably.  Will some of the people you love reply with hate or disdain?  Again, probably.  Does Jesus’ command to His faithful disciples stand?  Absolutely.

 

Love gives.  It also creates opportunities.  Men and women, boys and girls, are drawn to authentic love.  That positive attraction gives us the opportunity to share the Gospel. 

 

It will cost you something to show love to others.  Someone, somewhere, will find a way to exploit, mishandle or ill-use what you give.  However they respond, His command to you remains clear.  Are you obedient to His Word?

 

Think:        Real love requires action and pays costs. 

 

Pray:           “Lord, show me how to love others as You do.”

 

Copyright © March 2017, Kirk Hunt

 

This devotional is brought to you courtesy of CadreMen Press.  You can purchase a copy of Blessed and Blessing: Devotionals For Gospel Champions from your favorite bookseller or directly from CadreMen Press.

More To Finish The Job

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More To Finish The Job By Kirk Hunt

Then it came to pass the seventh time, that he said, “There is a cloud, as small as a man’s hand, rising out of the sea!” So he said, “Go up, say to Ahab, ‘Prepare your chariot, and go down before the rain stops you.’”

1 Kings 18:44 NKJV
(Please also read 1 Kings 18:41–46.)

 

Elijah’s victory on Mount Carmel was incomplete.  God caused the drought because of Israel’s disobedience.  The nation repented and returned to God.  Since God is faithful to His promises, the drought had to end to finish the job of restoration.

 

Quietly and alone, Elijah prayed for rain.  Elijah’s assistant ran back and forth, looking for an answer to the prophet’s prayer.  Finally, a single, small cloud became visible.

 

The big, flashy event is (probably) important.  Still, more is usually needed to finish the job.  Follow-up, and follow-through, are often the hidden key(s) to success for the Kingdom.

 

Elijah knew that God’s answer by fire did not finish the job of restoration of Israel.  God’s people were humbled by years of drought, famine and the decimation of the Ba’al cult.  Israel’s repentance needed to be answered with restoration of the rains and fertile fields.

 

Your victory was a lot of work.  You are rightfully tired and worn.  Do not stop now.  Finish the job God assigned you.

 

Think:                After the big event, finish the job God assigned you.

 

Pray:                   “Lord, help me to complete Your job, Your way.”

 

Copyright © April 2016, Kirk Hunt

This devotional is a ministry of https://devotionals.cadremenpress.com.

Short Prayer, Full Impact

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Short Prayer, Full Impact By Kirk Hunt

 

Then the fire of the Lord fell and consumed the burnt sacrifice, and the wood and the stones and the dust, and it licked up the water that was in the trench.   Now when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces; and they said, “The Lord, He is God! The Lord, He is God!”

1 Kings 18:38-39 NKJV
(Please also read 1 Kings 18:30–40.)

 

The water-soaked altar was disintegrated.  God’s fire consumed all of the animal sacrifice, stone, wood and water in an instant.  The impact of Elijah’s short prayer, asking for God’s power, rocked the entire nation.

 

The prophets of Ba’al had spent hours imploring their pagan superstition.  Elijah spent perhaps sixty seconds asking the living God.  Without fanfare or furor, God answered Elijah’s simple prayer before all the people of Israel.  He re-proved Himself to His chosen people.

 

God responds to the depth, sincerity and earnestness of your faith.  Your faith may not be perfect, or without the taint of doubt.  Still, He responds to a heart that trusts in Him.  God still replies with fire to His sons and daughters who come sincerely to their heavenly Father.

 

You do not need long, complex or eloquent prayers.  You only need to know that God answers in strength and power those who love and trust Him.  It is just that easy.  It is just that simple.

 

Think:                God responds to the depth of your faith, not the length of your prayer.

Pray:                   “Lord, I come to you in faith and trust.”

 

Copyright © April 2016, Kirk Hunt

This devotional is a ministry of https://devotionals.cadremenpress.com.

All Noise, No Substance

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All Noise, No Substance By Kirk Hunt

 

So they cried aloud, and cut themselves, as was their custom, with knives and lances, until the blood gushed out on them.   And when midday was past, they prophesied until the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice. But there was no voice; no one answered, no one paid attention.

 

1 Kings 18:28-29 NKJV

 

For at least 8 hours (morning to noon to evening), the prophets of Ba’al screamed, yelled, leaped, jumped and otherwise made a lot of noise and sweat.  They wasted their time and effort.  Their invocations had no substance, power or effect in the real world.

 

The prophets of Ba’al failed from the start.  They put their faith in dead idols instead of our living God.  They literally bled with no chance of impact or effect.

 

High numbers of decibels or attendees do not automatically indicate anything of value.  A few men and women, who are determined to make a difference, always have the greater impact.  Substance always wins in the end.

 

Unfortunately, building God’s Kingdom, or Godly lives, requires wise and substantial effort.  The Grand Canyon did not appear overnight.  Doctors, lawyers and engineers study for years before they are competent in their professions.

 

God’s Kingdom, and Godly lives, come through faith in Him, then significant work in the real world.  As modern day people of God, make sure that you are acting with substance and significance.  Please, generate more for God than noise and sweat.

 

Think:                Progress with God and His Kingdom requires acts of substance, not just noise.

 

Pray:                   “Lord, help me to serve You with acts of substance and significance.”

 

 

Copyright © April 2016, Kirk Hunt

This devotional is a ministry of https://devotionals.cadremenpress.com.

Go With God

“Go With God” by Kirk Hunt


And she [Rahab] said unto the men, I know that the LORD hath given you the land, and that your terror is fallen upon us, and that all the inhabitants of the land faint because of you.

Joshua 2:9 (KJV)


The fighting men of Jericho saw the two Israelite spies as a threat. Rahab saw them as an opportunity. Since Rahab is an ancestor of King David and Jesus Christ, I’m siding with her interpretation of events.


The important factor is that she saw God orchestrating events for Israel. She took steps to go with God’s people. She did not act on political insight. She did not respond to economic trends. She saw God’s manifest destiny for Israel and aligned herself with Him.


God is orchestrating events around you. He has an agenda for the nations and you. You have a choice: Move with Him or stay where you are.


In faith, Rahab made her choice, then acted on that faith. It is that simple. Look for where God is going, then go with Him.


God calls to you. He wants you to experience all of the good and wonderful things He has in store for you. He is moving and changing everything. Do you see that as a threat, or an opportunity?


Think: God is creating good for me and others. Will I go with Him?


Pray: “Father-God, help me to seek Your direction and purpose, then follow.”



Copyright © January 2011, Kirk Hunt