During Holy Week Devotions, Pastor Jerry and I will be reflecting on each day through the eyes of one of Jesus’ original disciples. I hope this journey helps you reflect on the days leading up to the Cross.
In Christ’s Love, Pastor Tim
Jesus entered the temple and began to drive out those who were selling and those who were buying in the temple, and he overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who sold doves; and he would not allow anyone to carry anything through the temple. (Mark 11:15-16)
What a difference a day makes! Just yesterday we were with him as he entered the city of Jerusalem on a donkey. As we entered, all people were throwing their coats and palm branches on the road ahead of him and shouting, “Hosanna! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord! Blessed is the coming kingdom of our ancestor David! Hosanna in the highest heaven!” It was louder than the strongest storm at sea! After we entered the city, he went and looked at the temple and turned around and went back to Bethany.
That night Jesus seemed especially irritated, as if he saw something that he just couldn’t get out of his mind and it just kept bothering him. Everyone was afraid to ask him what was wrong. We didn’t know what to do. We started the day with such a great celebration, but by that night many of us were wondering what was next. What is the Messiah’s plan? When do we get the crowd to rise up against Rome? My sleep, that night, was uneasy at best.
In the morning, Jesus still seemed to be disturbed. As a matter fact, I heard him curse a fig tree for not having fruit for him, as we walked to the temple. When we got to the temple, Jesus did an amazing thing. Jesus drove out all the money changers and turned over the tables and he released all the doves. Then he called on us to stop anybody from carrying anything through the temple. Many in the crowd joined us. Together we shut the temple down! While we were doing that, Jesus taught to any who would listen, saying, “Is it not written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer for all the nations’? But you have made it a den of robbers.” The chief priests and scribes that I saw looked so mad I thought they were going to burst open.
As the day came to an end, we returned to the safety of Bethany. While we were leaving, I could see murder in the eyes of the leaders of the temple. Jesus has laid the first blow. But, how will the priests, Pharisees, and scribes respond? How would Herod and Rome respond?
I spent another night worrying to myself. “Do we have enough power to overtake the temple and to cast out Rome?” I know that Jesus is the Messiah! All that I have seen and heard has proven this to me. But, I am still afraid. Over the years, others have claimed to be the Messiah. But, every one of them and their followers were destroyed in battle, or worse yet, crucified! As I stared into the sleepless night Tuesday’s sun began to rise…