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Sunday, July 11, 2010

7/10/10- Mark 13:1-3 The destruction of the temple

1 As Jesus was leaving the temple, one of his disciples said to him, "Look, Teacher! What massive stones! What magnificent buildings!" 2 "Do you see all these great buildings?" replied Jesus. "Not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down."

(Picture of my daughter next to an excavated stone above; picture of stones thrown down near southern wall)
[Most consider Mark written about 59-62 AD and the destruction of the temple was in 70 AD- less than 40 years after Jesus' death].

Jeremiah 7 says that the people were trusting that they had "the temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord!" But their hearts were not right.  Jesus said a similar thing- that the people were consumed with looking right on the outside, but their hearts weren't right on the inside.  Our religion in America is quickly turning into a shell of its former self.  We have "In God we trust" and pledge "one nation under God" but our hearts are not set on trying to please God.  In the name of tolerance we are running after other gods that would destroy us.  In the name of helping others many are winking at adultery and homosexuality and worst in order to "get along" instead of "repent"- making up excuses.  Perhaps the oldest in the book- "They were born that way."  The Jews consider Jesus a prophet in part because he predicted the destruction of the third temple- one of the wonders of the world at the time.   But the words of Jesus to get our hearts right need to penetrate to our ears and hearts. 

Prayer: Help me, Lord to trust in you, listen to you, and get my heart right- so that you will dwell in me as you dwelt in the temple.

John Calvin abridged: Many are amazed that Jesus would talk about his kingdom without the splendor and wealth of the temple. Many in my day believe the wealth and splendor of the papacy should not be spoken against either.  All of this tells us about the fading and transitory aspect of the world.  This ought to correct the vanity of our senses, which too eagerly follow pomp, luxury, and pleasure.

(Josephus said the temple stones were 15 x 12 x 8 cubits and the sun would glisten off of them-almost blinding those who saw it).

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