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The Living Waters Podcast

Ep. 148 – Jesus Wielding a Whip and Tossing Tables

Jesus, filled with zeal for His Father’s house, caused a scene in the temple of Jerusalem that isn’t easily forgotten. Today the guys discuss the clearing of the temple and how we should respond.

Show Notes

In today’s episode, the guys discuss the story of Jesus wielding a whip and topping over tables at the temple in Jerusalem. This account showcases the reality of who Christ was, in contrast to who He has been shaped to be in this modern age. Today, Jesus is widely regarded as timid, weak-kneed, and a nearly feminine figure. This story, however, shows the strong man He truly was. It’s also worth noting that Jesus speaks harsh words several times in the New Testament, but they are most often towards religious leaders. Only a handful of times did He speak those words to people outside of the church.

After reading the account of the story in John 2:13-16, the guys discuss whether this occurrence sealed His fate, since He called God’s temple His Father’s house. The story that precedes this is the cursing of the fig tree, which tends to come off as totally confusing for a first-time reader of the Bible. However, it is significant because God often referred to His own people as fig trees. Many scholars believe that Jesus’ first action as king is to pass judgment on the religious leaders. We can see a parallel between the incident Jesus was dealing with at the time and what we see happening today with the taking over of what was meant to holy and using it for wicked, greedy means.

In this story, the same Voice which called the world into existence is bringing judgment in order to cleanse the temple. After the joyful Passover had taken place, Jesus entered the temple and saw the craziness of His father’s house. He immediately grew angry with righteous indignation and began to turn over tables in the courtyard. We see this very same thing today in our own churches. While we likely won’t set up tables to exchange currency or tote a cage of high-priced pigeons, our churches do have elaborate decorations, elegant attire and world-class music which take away from God’s message. If Jesus were to step into our churches this Sunday, He would be looking for the misfits, marginalized, and outcasts. We would dare to say that Jesus would “overturn the tables” there, too. Every single person alive today needs a clearing of their own temple, to allow the Holy Spirit to enter our lives, turn over our tables, and thoroughly cleanse us.

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