Monday. The Tree and the Temple.

I read Mark 11:12-19 and Matthew 21:12-14

Monday of  Passion Week begins with a tree.

Today, He returns to the Temple in Jerusalem to take care of unfinished business. Fig trees grow in abundance in this area, and, on the way, He approaches one particularly leafy specimen. This must mean early fruit. But no. Not one fig. Let no fruit grow on you ever again.

Really?

But with Jesus, nothing is ever insignificant.  Tomorrow will reveal the why.

He continues determinedly to the city, through the masses of people.  Three years earlier, He had “cleansed the Temple.” It does not stay cleansed. It remains a one-stop-shopping mall for travelers needing to buy animals for sacrifice.  The noise and smells and traffic of buyers and merchants fill the court.  This time Jesus wields only His righteous anger, overturning tables, and the seats of cheating currency traders.

He is strong and irate, shouting as He drives them away: “My house shall be called a house of prayer. You’ve made it a hangout for thieves!”

And finally, there in the devastation, there is room for the real work of that once-holy place. The blind and the crippled approach Him without fear. Come, He motions. I will heal you. And Jesus performs acts of mercy in place of the sacrilege.

I have never thought of this scene in quite this way before. My mind sifts through what I’ve read. Righteous indignation. Reverence. Compassion. And that crown jewel of Christian discipline – prayer. Jesus draws attention to them all on this day, as both Judge and Savior. The things so obviously important to Christ – are they important to me?

Hate, I once read, is not the opposite of love. Apathy is.

Jesus returns to Bethany as Monday draws to a close.

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One response to this post.

  1. Posted by jeanettebreaux on April 10, 2012 at 2:31 pm

    “The blind and the crippled approach Him without fear. Come, He motions.” I love this. We, the broken, are safe with Him. Why do we hesitate? Thanks for the insight on this passage, Debra.

    Reply

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