Our verse of the day comes from Matthew 21:12-17.
“And Jesus entered the temple and drove out all who sold and bought in the temple, and he overturned the tables of the money – changers, and seats of those who sold pigeons. He said to them, “It is written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer,’ but you make it a den of robbers.”
And the blind and the lame came to him in the temple, and he healed them. But when the chief priests and the scribes saw the wonderful things that he did and the children crying out in the temple, “Hosanna to the Son of David!” they were indignant, and they said to him, “Do you hear what these are saying?”
And Jesus said to them, “Yes; have you never read, “Out of the mouth of infants and nursing babies you have prepared praise?” And leaving them, he went out of the city to Bethany and lodged there.”
Let’s break this down a bit.
Pilgrims traveling to Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover needed animals that met the ritual required for sacrifice. It was easier to purchase the animal in town than to carry or lead the animal on a long journey.
Buying and selling were allowed; however, doing it in the temple was the issue. The vendors had set up money tables and animal pens in the temple area. It is thought that the buying and selling took place in the outer courts where the Gentiles would have gathered.
Some commentaries say sellers sold the animals at unfair prices. It reminds me of hurricane season. If we get a major hurricane that causes power outages and gas shortages, we tend to see price gouging. Some sellers know the supply is short and the demand is high, so they adjust their prices unfairly to take advantage of the situation.
One could say the same thing about the sellers in the temple court. They knew the ritual, and they knew not everyone could bring their own animal. The sellers adjusted their prices accordingly, some for dishonest gain and in God’s house too!
After clearing the buyers and sellers, Jesus welcomed those that needed healing, and he healed them.
Of course, you have the killjoys, the chief priests, and the teachers of the law standing nearby watching everything. They couldn’t be happy for those healed but instead criticized Jesus. The text says they were indignant. They were angry.
Why were they angry?
Jesus responds with Scripture from the book of Psalm (8:2), which says, “Through the praise of children and infants you have established a stronghold against your enemies, to silence the foe and the avenger.”
What did he mean?
God’s glory is displayed across the face of the heavens, and he appoints the praise of little children to silence the dark powers lined up against him.
The praises of little children upset these guys, and they would look for ways to silence Jesus.
Sadly, these guys didn’t see the blessings Jesus brought to all who crossed his path. They couldn’t be happy for the guy who had been blind since birth, or the disabled, sick, and anyone else Jesus healed. They couldn’t bring themselves to rejoice with the children.
Is it because it had to be all about them? Were they jealous of losing the admiration of the people? Do they see Jesus as a threat to their existence and livelihood? I would say yes to all those and more.
Furthermore, Jesus wasn’t what they expected the Messiah to look like or do what he did.
He was a problem, and they needed a solution.
Join me tomorrow as we look at what happened on Tuesday of that week.
Verse Of The Day – Palm Sunday – Hosanna!
Six Foot Ceiling: The Work Part 7