Take care of His temple…

Ezekiel 44:1-9

Then He brought me back to the outer gate of the sanctuary which faces toward the east, but it was shut. 2 And the LORD said to me, “This gate shall be shut; it shall not be opened, and no man shall enter by it, because the LORD God of Israel has entered by it; therefore it shall be shut. 3 As for the prince, because he is the prince, he may sit in it to eat bread before the LORD; he shall enter by way of the vestibule of the gateway, and go out the same way.”

4 Also He brought me by way of the north gate to the front of the temple; so I looked, and behold, the glory of the LORD filled the house of the LORD; and I fell on my face. 5 And the LORD said to me, “Son of man, mark well, see with your eyes and hear with your ears, all that I say to you concerning all the ordinances of the house of the LORD and all its laws. Mark well who may enter the house and all who go out from the sanctuary.

6 “Now say to the rebellious, to the house of Israel, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD: “O house of Israel, let Us have no more of all your abominations. 7 When you brought in foreigners, uncircumcised in heart and uncircumcised in flesh, to be in My sanctuary to defile it—My house—and when you offered My food, the fat and the blood, then they broke My covenant because of all your abominations. 8 And you have not kept charge of My holy things, but you have set others to keep charge of My sanctuary for you.” 9 Thus says the Lord GOD: “No foreigner, uncircumcised in heart or uncircumcised in flesh, shall enter My sanctuary, including any foreigner who is among the children of Israel.

Pasted from <http://www.blueletterbible.org/tools/printerFriendly.cfm?b=Eze&c=44&t=nkjvp>

The entrance is closed to all once the glory of God has entered.  We are his temple.  When we receive his presence at the cross, our minds- the east gate- are closed to all else.  We become focused upon the Lord, His thoughts and His ways; we are new the old has gone.

“…This gate shall be shut; it shall not be opened, and no man shall enter by it, because the LORD God of Israel has entered by it; therefore it shall be shut. …”

Need it be said to be careful what we expose our minds to?  Our God is a jealous God – we are to keep to Him only.  We are not to allow ‘foreigners’ – anything that can be anti- or other than- God based- anything that does not hold to Him only- entrance to our temple.

“… “No foreigner, uncircumcised in heart or uncircumcised in flesh, shall enter My sanctuary, including any foreigner who is among the children of Israel….”

We are consecrated; set apart for Him only.

Take away:  What do we spend our time on?  To whom do we allow entrance to our inner self and mind?  When we allow outside influences, – those influences other than  the Lord’s we are inviting ‘foreigners’  into His temple, our body,  mind and spirit.  He calls this desecrating His sanctuary.

“….you brought in foreigners, uncircumcised in heart and uncircumcised in flesh, to be in My sanctuary to defile it…”

We can be alert, aware of what we expose our minds and inner selves to.  Monitor the influences we expose ourselves to; He says pay close attention to…

“… mark well, see with your eyes and hear with your ears, all that I say to you concerning all the ordinances of the house of the LORD and all its laws. Mark well who may enter the house and all who go out from the sanctuary….”

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Cleaned for what?…

  Matthew 12:42-46

“When a defiling evil spirit is expelled from someone, it drifts along through the desert looking for an oasis, some unsuspecting soul it can bedevil. When it doesn’t find anyone, 44 it says, ‘I’ll go back to my old haunt.’ On return it finds the person spotlessly clean, but vacant. 45 It then runs out and rounds up seven other spirits more evil than itself and they all move in, whooping it up. That person ends up far worse off than if he’d never gotten cleaned up in the first place. “That’s what this generation is like: You may think you have cleaned out the junk from your lives and gotten ready for God, but you weren’t hospitable to my kingdom message, and now all the devils are moving back in.”

Jesus applies this analogy to a wicked generation.  What started this comment was a request for a miraculous sign.  The religious leaders did not accept Jesus or what was being done daily by and through him.  They were accusatory on his source of authority. How does cleaning up your act apply to a generation?  We have lots of self-help programs and people get their ‘act together’ using them.  But if the space left from the cleaning out is not filled with the kingdom message and what that requires of them it will be filled with something else.  Nature abhors a vacuum. 

We spend a lot of life filling our minds and hearts from the print and media around us, in the home, at school and later at work as well as in entertainment and recreation. Much of these influences are not of God but present the world view of life and living.  We can empty ourselves when we receive Christ and the message of the kingdom, we can now be aware that our mind/heart needs to be filled with Christ.  The renewing of the mind begins at the Cross, then do we not have a responsibility to continue to fill our minds and hearts with scripture and daily conversation with God?  How else can we gain the knowledge and understanding of God that Proverbs talks about?  Should it not come from the Word of God with understanding given by the Holy Spirit as spoken of there?  Should we not spend as much time with Biblical influences as we spent with world view influences?  How else can we find out who God is, who he says we are, what  he can do, what we can do?