Page 3 - October 2017 - Truth & Tidings
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t was, perhaps, His first visit to the  business, but for business characterized as
            city since embarking on His public  theft. What had happened and what lesson
        Iministry. It was Passover and He, in  can we learn from it? What fatal error was
        obedience to the Word of God, was in Je-  made by the nation between visit one and
        rusalem. The Lord Jesus made His way to  visit two?
        the Temple and, observing the mercantile   At His first visit, the Lord Jesus was es-
        nature of the activities in the outer court,   tablishing the authority of the Word of God
        moved in what seemed a very uncharacter-  in the House of God. The Lord Jesus saw
        istic manner as He drove out animals and   conditions which were not in keeping with
        overturned the tables of the money chang-  the Word of God and the character of God.
        ers. His words, which echoed through the   He knew that if the Word of God was not
        court that day, were both an admonition   bowed to, then it would end in conditions
        and a warning: “Make not My Father’s   spoken of by Isaiah and Jeremiah (Isa 56:7;
        house an house of merchandise” (John   Jer 7:11). The failure to allow God’s Word
        2:16, KJV). Divine light had been shed on   to control activities in the house facilitated
        the darkness of human activity. Corrective   the transition from, “make not,” to “ye
        action was needed.                   have made it.”
          The other gospel writers record a similar
        yet different scene three years later. Once   The lessons for us are apparent and tell-
        again the Lord has come to Jerusalem at   ing. The Word of God must have its central
        Passover season. Ultimately, He has come   place in the House of God. It must not only
        to finish the great purpose of His advent –   be revered as the Word of God, but must
        to die upon a cross. Again, He makes His   be allowed to control all the activities in
        way to the Temple and there is a repeat   the House of God. Paul, after teaching
        performance of the events which trans-  the “house of God” character of the lo-
        pired three years earlier. (Had he waited   cal church in 1 Timothy 3:15, proceeded
        three years for the fruit of repentance? Luke   to enjoin Timothy to “give attendance
        13:8) Animals are forced from the court and   to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine”
        the money changers are sent scrambling to   (1Tim 4:13, KJV). The reading here is the
        pick up their coins. It appears at first to be   public reading of the Scriptures. In Colos-
        a carbon-copy of what John reported from   sians 3:16 the assembly is urged to “let the
        earlier in the life of the Lord Jesus.   word of Christ dwell in you richly.” This
          On closer examination, however, there   is collective, although it obviously must be
        is one significant and telling difference.   individual first.
        On this occasion His words are different.   We must never compromise or minimize
        “Ye have made it a den of thieves” (Matt  the value of Scripture nor mute the voice of
        21:13, KJV). His earlier warning was not to  Scripture. That would be the inescapable
        make it a place of normal business transac-  recipe for moving from “make not,” to “ye
        tions. But now, not only was it a place for  have made.”

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