My Boss Trashed the Temple

[45] And he (Jesus) entered the temple and began to drive out those who sold, [46] saying to them, “It is written, ‘My house shall be a house of prayer,’ but you have made it a den of robbers.” (Luke 19:45)

Somewhere in storage I have a wall plaque created by the elders of a church I served. The plaque simply states: “My Boss Trashed the Temple.”

Maybe this one requires a little explanation.

In a sermon I had vented some frustration at pastors and priests with bumper stickers claiming: “My Boss Was a Jewish Carpenter.” If anyone reading or listening to this devotion has such a bumper sticker or plaque, please hear me out. While this might not apply to you, it undoubtedly applies to others.

“My Boss was a Jewish Carpenter” is a pithy way of saying one works for Jesus. However, this could imply a casual, informal relationship with Jesus. It could be used to minimize Jesus’ sacrificial suffering and death and elevate the “buddy-buddy” personal relationship with Jesus. 

If this is the only way one’s relationship with Jesus is understood, that’s a problem. It risks ignoring the fact that Jesus experienced carpentry firsthand on Golgotha. 

So, in the sermon, I said I wanted a bumper sticker that stated: “My Boss Trashed the Temple.” It reminds us that Jesus is so much more than a personal friend. It is a reminder that Jesus is the Christ, the Savior who would sacrifice all for the sins of the world. Holy Monday is a fitting time to reflect on this reality. 

(This devotion was written for the congregations of the Ohio District – LCMS.)


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