The Passover of the Jews was near, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. In the temple he found people selling cattle, sheep, and doves, and the money changers seated at their tables. Making a whip of cords, he drove all of them out of the temple, both the sheep and the cattle. He also poured out the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. He told those who were selling the doves, “Take these things out of here! Stop making my Father’s house a marketplace!” His disciples remembered that it was written, “Zeal for your house will consume me.” John 2: 13-17
Jesus is furious. So angry he tips over tables. So indignant he makes a whip. There is chaos in the holy temple – birds loose, flapping frantically; lambs bleating, hooves clicking on the stone; people shocked, voices rising in a cacophony of languages; no one understanding what is happening, where they should go, if it is safe to stay.
Jesus comes into Jerusalem’s temple, and is livid. “Stop making this house of prayer a marketplace!”
How do you interpret this story? We know Jesus is always turning things upside down but this – this is a major event, so important it’s recorded by all four gospel writers, something that rarely happens.
What is going on at the Temple that infuriates Jesus? Do we even need to care?