Christ entered the Temple in Jerusalem and started chucking things around, right. So, here everybody is just peacefully offering sacrifices and such-not like they’ve done all their lives. Then… Bang! Jesus comes and starts knocking over tables, driving animals, (both livestock and human metaphorical), with a whip He made Himself! That’d take you by surprise.
It’s not the same thing, but assume a man came into your house of worship on Sunday and started bodily throwing people out. Would that be enough to wake anyone up do you think?
Can I Quote the Bible Here? Is that okay…?
“And when He had made a scourge of small cords, He drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changers’ money, and overthrew the tables;”–John 2:15
What’s the first thing Jesus does when He arrives at the temple: worship, offer sacrifice? No. The first thing He does, (that John records), is make a scourge of small cords and drives the livestock and moneychangers out. He overturns the tables and calls the temple a “den of thieves”.
I believe all of the Bible can in some way be applied to our lives. So, know that when we’re talking about a Bible passage, it is only partly about studying the story, and more about how it applies to life.
The Bible says that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. Just like Jesus came into the temple in Jerusalem, He wants to come into your life and throw out everything that doesn’t belong. And He doesn’t do it gentle, because He is a jealous God and there is no room for anything else other than Him and Him alone in your life.
Why did Jesus throw out the money changers and animal sellers? Wasn’t it easier for the people to just purchase sacrifices at the temple and then sacrifice them there? For one thing, worship and the seeking of forgiveness of sins was never to be convenient or easy. But more importantly, I believe Jesus throws out the money changers and sacrifices as a way of saying, they are no longer necessary. He is the lamb slain from before the foundations of the world. And when all the other sacrifices were gone, there He stood, the only perfect sacrifice for every man’s sin.
Your life and mine
Jesus wants to come into your life, your temple of the Holy Ghost and throw out everything that doesn’t belong, or perhaps is no longer needed. He has come to fulfill the law, and so the law must be replaced by Him in your life. He is the propitiation for your sin and mine, so in our place, God sees the law fulfilled in Him. Where we failed, He fulfilled. Where once God saw sin, He now sees the sacrifice of Christ.
Jesus came to replace everything else in our life. When He moves in, everything else must move out. Every other sacrifice and work of righteousness in us by which we tried to obtain redemption will be cast out by Jesus, the only perfect price for our salvation.
If you don’t want Christ to forcefully rid your life of everything that He desires gone, you should start letting go of them yourself. Maybe you already know of some things in your heart, in your demeanor, in your spirit, that Christ would have gone: throw them out. Begin to set things right by removing the idols, the works of the flesh and anything that keeps you from having all of Jesus and Him having all of you.
Full surrender. That’s what I need. It’s what we all need. If there is sin in your life, get rid of it for sure. But if there is righteousness in your life, yet by works and not faith, get rid of it. Christ will cast down every idol if you let Him in. But what if the idols are so many there is no entrance for Him into our lives….?
As always, thanks for reading.
—the anonymous novelist