For Saturday January 21, 2023
[Jesus] said to those who sold doves, “Take these things away! Do not make
My Father’s house a house of merchandise!”
“Cheap grace is the mortal enemy of our church.” Those are the opening words of The Cost of Discipleship, written by German pastor-theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Many know him as the author of this and other books, but not all know that he was executed by hanging in 1945 for the part he played in resisting Adolf Hitler’s Nazi government in Germany. As a Christian, he spoke out for what he knew to be true, though it cost him his life.
We could call Dietrich Bonhoeffer a modern Christian activist—and we could call Jesus of Nazareth the first one in history. When Jesus saw that the Temple in Jerusalem had been turned into a marketplace where unscrupulous vendors were profiting from the guilty consciences of worshipers, His righteous anger took over. Driving them out, He cleansed His Father’s house and incurred the wrath of those who valued their own interests above God’s (John 2:13–22).
The day may come when you are faced with something you know is not right. The temptation is just to pass by, to look the other way. But if you don’t speak up for God, who will? Be thankful that Jesus was willing to speak up for righteousness even though it cost Him His life.
It costs to follow Jesus Christ, but it costs even more not to.