Cultivate Revival: Becoming A House of Prayer
When Jesus came into Jerusalem for Passover, he entered the temple courts and drove out those who were selling animals for the sacrifice and exchanging currencies for the specific type of coinage accepted in the temple.
There are basically two ideas as to why the sight of this activity in the Court of the Gentiles infuriated Him.
1) Previously the money changers and merchants would set up on the Mount of Olives so as to leave the Court of the Gentiles open for foreigners to come and worship God. Setting up in the Court of the Gentiles created a great difficulty for the foreigners to worship and pray.
2) It is believed that the money changers and merchants were possibly exploiting the poor.
Either way, Jesus did not like the activities that were taking place in the Temple Courts and drove them out saying, “It is written, MY HOUSE WILL BE A HOUSE OF PRAYER, but you are making it a den of thieves!”
When Jesus made this statement, He was quoting the prophet Isaiah and Jeremiah as they were making an appeal to the Israelites to not oppress the foreigner or outcast and prevent them from meeting with God. This moment reminds us of the importance of making space for all people to meet with God without any distraction or hindrance.
As King Solomon was preparing to build this magnificent temple for the Lord, his father King David counseled him, saying:
SERVE HIM WHOLEHEARTEDLY and WILLINGLY
David's promise to Solomon was that GOD WOULD BE FOUND (make Himself fully available).
[ref. 1 Chronicles 28]
As King Solomon dedicated the temple in prayer, He made three significant statements relating to the purpose of the temple:
Lord God of Israel, there is none like You. – WORSHIP, 2 Chronicles 6:14
That You may hear the cry and prayer of Your servant – PRAYER, 2 Chronicles 6:19
Arise God, come to Your resting place – COMMUNION, 2 Chronicles 6:41
God’s response to Solomon’s prayer of dedication: THE GLORY OF GOD FILLED THE TEMPLE – 2 Chronicles 7:1
As Solomon was praying for the foreigners who would come to the Temple, he prayed that three things would be accomplished:
They would KNOW GOD'S NAME
They would FEAR GOD (BE IN AWE OF HIM)
They would know that the temple is the place that BEARS HIS NAME (a place where people can experience who God is and see His glory).
All these things represent what being a House of Prayer is all about. A place set apart where people from all walks of life can communicate with and encounter God – a place to have access to God and commune with Him.
After the dedication of Solomon’s temple, the Scriptures say that the Lord appeared to Solomon and said:
IF MY PEOPLE WILL:
Seek My Face
Turn from their wicked ways
Forgive their sin
Heal their land
Then GOD promises to:
Make His eyes open to His people
Make His ears attentive to their prayer
Make Himself known through His people
Keep His Heart with His people
2 Chronicles 7:12-16
This is a picture of revival and transformation for all who open their hearts and lives to God. This is a
picture of the House of Prayer. Today, God’s people, gathered together by Him, are His Temple –
His House of Prayer.
“Don’t you yourselves know that you are God’s temple and that the Spirit of God lives in you?” 1 Corinthians 3:16
“For we are the temple of the living God, as God said, I will dwell and walk among them, and I will be their God and they will be my people.”. 2 Corinthians 6:16
“In him the whole building, being put together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. In him you are also being built together for God’s dwelling in the Spirit.” Ephesians 2:21-22
It has been said by many scholars that the Temple was the place where heaven intersects with earth. Today, heaven intersects with earth in the lives of God's people gathered together.
It is our passion to become a House of Prayer for all people to encounter and commune with God by His Holy Spirit. So that all who gather with us will know and experience the reality of God and live in relationship with Him, being transformed by His love, power and grace.