Monday, November 8, 2010


1. This is the first Passover since Jesus assumed his ministry. The festival lasted seven days. Its crowning glory was the eating of the roasted lamb by a party numerous enough to consume it together with the bitter herbs. Every Jew of 12 years was supposed to attend this festival. The hour has come for Jesus to step forth publicly before his nation. His first great public act would take place in the capital, in the Temple itself.

2. There were four courts in the temple, about the sanctuary proper, that the priests, that of the men towards east, that of the women and around these three, there was an exterior court called the court of the Gentiles, since Gentiles were permitted to enter in. It was here the business was in full swing. There were flocks and cattle and the whole place was filled with stench and filth. There eyes of the money lenders were twinkling with lust and greed for gain. This was the state of God’s house.

3. The Son cleanses his Father’s house with the lash of the scourge. No halfway measures, no gradual and gentle correction will do in a matter as flagrant as this. Tender souls have imagined that Jesus only menaced with the scourge, al least that he struck only the animals. But there is no reason to believe this. Jesus only manifests the right anger.

4. During the entire procedure, Jesus never lost his self-control, if he had, he would have sinned. Even in circumstances like this the Messiah exhibits his perfect control over his actions.

5. If the object of Jesus’ zeal was only these merchants and these bankers, Jesus would sink to the level of our modern reformers who try to mend the leaking ship by repairing the rigging. The temple was the very heart of Jewish people. On the score of the law alone he corrects the open abuse, so that the gospel with its loftier motive may follow.

When God appeared to Moses in the burning bush, he warned him to remove his sandals because the place was holy. Holy people, holy places and holy objects should not be treated without respect. Due to too much of rationalization we are slowly losing the sense of the sacred. Very few of us enter the Churches without sandals, and now we have so many reasons to justify it too. In the name of convenience there are many other practices which have become irrelevant today. Jesus is telling us to retain this sense of sacred and asks us all to have a proper disposition towards objects, places and persons set apart for God.

An Interpretation on St Luke’s Gospel
The Pulpit Commentary

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