Matthew 12:6-8.. 6 But I say to you that something greater than the temple is here. 7 But if you had known what this means, ‘I desire compassion, and not a sacrifice,’ you would not have condemned the innocent. 8 For the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath.”
The Pharisees saw the disciples of Jesus picking grain to eat and said they were breaking the law by working on the Sabbath. Vv.1-2 Jesus answered by giving an example of David eating the consecrated bread. He said in the verses above in effect “I am greater than the temple” because the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath.
The temple is a place; Jesus a person. The temple has a special authority and a hierarchy; all who wish to, had equal access to Jesus. The temple was drowned in ceremony in an effort to attain intimacy with the God; a relationship with Jesus is an intimacy that is above and beyond ceremony. In a temple, you go to the place; Jesus comes to you. The temple is made of stone and mortar; the new temple where Jesus has promised to live and commune with each of us, is within the body of each believer. You can lie to a building; you cannot lie to a person with impunity.
In the midst of John’s description of the “New Jerusalem” he is startled and declares: “I did not see a temple in the city because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple” (Revelation 21:22 NIV). Perfect or complete worship requires no temple. Just as the sacrifices of the temple system pointed to the reality of Jesus on the cross, the temple foreshadowed ultimate communion with God, who is distinct from us and invites us into that intimate communion with him. There is no need for priests, no need for a temple, no power structure. Jesus is our High Priest!
Notes: Modified from “Why Jesus” by Ravi Zacharias p. 238, to order click here.
Henry Luke 3/19/2018
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