“I tell you that one greater than the temple is here.” (Matt. 12:6)

WE CAN BE SKEPTICAL when a product is labeled “new and improved.” It may mean only that the packaging has changed and the amount of the contents decreased. God’s redemptive plan in Jesus is not merely the repackaging or dumbing down of an old product. The law of Moses and the sacrificial system were intended to lead people toward the fulfillment of God’s salvation plan in Jesus. Something greater than the law, sacrifices, and temple was present in Jesus, but many preferred to hold on to the old while being suspicious of the new.

A seismic shift was taking place in God’s redemptive plan. Jesus was greater than the temple or the religious acts that took place in it. The offering of himself as the sacrifice to remove the sins of humankind was greater than any sacrifice offered on the temple altar. Some preferred to stick with lifeless symbols and empty rituals that were intended to point them to Jesus, and they missed Him.

We are not much different. We can spend our time at religious places and occupy ourselves with religious practices that do not cause us to have greater knowledge of or love for Jesus. Someone greater than our places, preferences, and practices wants to invade our lives with the new and improved way to God. Don’t settle for something less.

Surrender the familiar and accept the new thing God wants to do.

Ken Heer was a pastor, community director, and author (A Good Start [WPH] and Ancient Fire [WPH]). He passed away prior to this publication.

© 2018 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission.