Journal Jn 2 (all references are from the ESV; changes in punctuation are mine)
Scripture: “The Passover of the Jews was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.
In the temple he found those who were selling oxen and sheep and pigeons, and the money changers sitting there.
And making a whip of cords, he drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and the oxen. And he poured out the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. And he told those who sold the pigeons, “Take these things away; do not make my Father’s house a house of trade.”
His disciples remembered that it was written, “Zeal for your house will consume me…” Jn2:13-17
Observation: Perhaps the predominant vision folks have of Jesus is being gentle and loving…it is forgotten that Jesus has a zealous and jealous side of him…
Analysis: I can candidly say, this is one of the most entertaining and sobering sections of the New Testament. This story, in various forms, is found in all the Gospels—it made an impact on the Apostles.
“Jesus is off to the side of the road, kind of brooding. He is doing something with his hands and a pile of leather strapping.
A little apprehensive, one of the Disciples approaches Jesus and asks, “What’cha doing there, Master?” Jesus keeps is head down, still fiddling with the pile of strapping—every once in moment glaring toward the temple square.
The Disciple asks again…and Jesus answers in a low, intense, but powerful murmur, “Making a whip….””
What does it mean to folks like me? There are a number of folks that may interpret this story as a license to be mean and violent. Couldn’t be further from the Truth when other Scriptures are folded in, like, “(pursue)…gentleness, self-control: against such things there is no law…” Fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5:23), and; “But as for you, O man of God, flee these things. Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness…” (1 Tim 6:11)
Therefore, when I think about the whole Bible, and the example set by Jesus, and what the Bible says describing the Man of God that God wants to form me in (Ro 8:29), then what can I draw out of the above reference?:
That fervency and zealousness is the stuff to cultivate.
Thinking about it, the picture of Jesus, storming the Temple, driving out the moneychangers, is showing the same emotion that He has for the Church and especially the local church. Not the building, but the people.
Prayer: Father, instill in me the love for the people in the local church, to be a part of their lives, to look always to point the way to You, to serve and be hospitable without grumbling and complaining, teaching and exhibiting Your character in me—with gentleness, compassion, and fervency in You.
Bring revival, O God.