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'."
Recently, the Lord has been dealing with me about "the church". And the area of most concern was PRIDE. The Lord has shown me or opened my eyes to the fact that the church, His church has become infested with the SPIRIT OF PRIDE. This is not a new thing but an old issue that has been destroying God's house(church, synagogue or temple) for generations.
Back in the days of Jeremiah, the prophet was instructed by God to address the issues of PRIDE in the Lord's house. In Jeremiah, chapter 7, verse 11, God says ' Has this house, which is called by name, become a den of thieves in your eyes?'. Now at that time, God had given them instructions as to what His house was suppose to be about, but the people had made it become something different. God says in verse 26, "Yet they did not obey Me or incline their ear, but stiffened their neck".
***stiff-necked: characterized by arrogance(haughty, stubborn); a proud or stubborn person
And because they did not obey His voice, but did what they wanted to do(v.24), God says that they "went backward and not forward".
Now this 'den of thieves' that the prophet Jeremiah spoke of was the same 'den of thieves' that Jesus spoke of when He went into the temple of God and cleaned it out of "those who brought and sold in the temple". The temple of God had again become a place of greed and self-interest.
The Lord has placed a desire in my heart and a call on my life to "drive out and turn over tables" in His house. Today's issue is pride. The spirit of pride is so interwoven in our church culture that it has become normal, and therefore overlooked. This "look at me" and "look at what I got" mentality or "what about me" or "what can I get" attitude is flowing heavily throughout the body of Christ(the church), yet we wonder why the church is not progressing. If the church is suppose to be a "house of prayer", than that means that it has to be a house filled with people who are "clothed with HUMILITY" [ 1 Peter 5:5] and not PRIDEFUL ones.
The temple that Jesus cleansed was full of PRIDEFUL men, doing what they wanted to do in the temple. Today the church is full of PRIDEFUL men, doing what they want to do; buying and selling the ideas of man and not seeking God as to what He wants to take place in His house.
It's time for the church to wake up. God has told me that if this spirit; the spirit of pride, is not dealt with by us, He will deal with it Himself. He said to me that, "I will bring them down right before your very eyes. You see the spirit of pride, you hear it in their talking, you see it in their walking and if it's not dealt with, there will be a great fall. I will bring them down".
This is the church that He blesses. This is the church that sees the manifestations of His Holy Spirit.
Then the blind and the lame came to Him in the temple, and He healed them.
Then, is the key word. First He cleaned out the temple, then He healed. The church has to be right for healing to take place. The atmosphere has to be right. The spirit dwelling in that place has to be right.
The Bible says that "God resists the PROUD, but gives grace to the HUMBLE" [1 Peter 5:5]. It's time for grace to be proud out on His house, which is called by His name.