And Jesus entered into the temple and drove out all who sold and bought in the temple, and He overturned the tables of the money-changers and the seats of those who sold pigeons. He said to them, "It is written, 'My house shall be called a house of prayer,' but you have made it a den of robbers." Matthew 21:12-13
A week or so ago a story came out of Tacoma, Washington.
It seems some folks from Grace Missionary Baptist Church were preparing a meal for a men's breakfast. The job was made difficult by the fact the sinks weren't running (and the toilets weren't flushing.)
On the other hand, they could hear water running somewhere. An investigation into the crawl space under the church revealed the problem: thieves had stolen all the copper pipes.
That story reminds me of the time I was serving a vacancy congregation and arrived there late. The congregation was singing the first hymn when I walked in the door. Still everything went well until it was time to consecrate the elements for Communion. I lifted the cover of the trays holding the individual cups and found out someone had come in Saturday night and drank the wine from 80 little glasses.
As Jesus said, there are those who would turn God's house into a den of robbers.
Understand I'm not talking about those who would steal copper plumbing or unconsecrated communion wine. I'm speaking about pastors and preachers who steal from Christ's people.
They have been entrusted with God's Word, but they mince, chop, and dice that Word into something unrecognizable. They have been told to take care of the sheep entrusted to them, but they prefer to fleece those sheep.
Yes, the Church has its share of robbers.
This is why, if you have a faithful pastor(s) and teacher(s) [Notice I'm not saying perfect pastor(s) and teacher(s)] trying to serve the Savior and you, I wish you would thank him or her.
Really. Call him up. Send her an e-mail. Say it to his face. Let them know you appreciate the fact they support the Savior rather than steal from Him.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, today I give thanks for those people whom You have called into the Church. For the faithful ones, I praise You; for those who are stealing from the sheep and lambs of the Church, I ask they be given a change of heart and mind. All this I ask in the Name of Jesus, the Good Shepherd. Amen.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries