Episode 192: A hideout for thieves!

May 24, 2024Dave Lambert
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Most of us like to think about Jesus as a mild mannered Guy who was always kind and took time with everyone to be sure they understood Him. Not every time, though. One incident is repeated in all four of the Gospels so it stands out. It's that time when Jesus went into the Temple and drove out the money changers. Today, let's take a few moments to consider that unusual event:

Jesus went into the Temple and drove out all those who were buying and selling there. He overturned the tables of the moneychangers and the stools of those who sold pigeons, and said to them, “It is written in the Scriptures that God said, ‘My Temple will be called a house of prayer.’ But you are making it a hideout for thieves!” (Matt. 21:12-13)

When you read that passage, does it startle you? It seems very different from the way we normally view Jesus, doesn't it? As I mentioned earlier, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John all included it in their accounts. As I was reading this passage a few weeks ago, it occurred to me that Jesus’ actions probably surprised the moneychangers even more than it surprises us! They probably thought of themselves as part of the ministry team! At that time, if you lived within a certain distance of the Temple in Jerusalem, you were required to travel to the Temple once a year and make a sacrificial offering. The moneychangers were providing this service—at a cost of course—so they probably thought they were leading members of the Altar Guild and the people buying the sacrifices probably thought of the moneychangers in that way, too, just doing their job. Then suddenly Jesus shows up! He starts turning tables and stools over and calling the moneychangers thieves! Doves were flying everywhere! It was pandemonium!

Wow! Jesus isn't always the way we think about Him. He's not primarily interested in the way you and I do church services. You and I must always stay alert to see what He really wants from us. Jesus isn't religious at all...and that is very Good News!

© 2024 Dave Lambert