St. Joseph Missionary Baptist Church
Wed Night Bible Study
Dr. E.C. Gregory, PhD – Bible Facilitator 12-14-16 Dr. H.T. Rhim, Pastor
JESUS CLEARS THE TEMPLE
John 2:13-22 (NLT)
13 It was nearly time for the Jewish Passover celebration, so Jesus went to Jerusalem.
14 In the Temple area he saw merchants selling cattle, sheep, and doves for sacrifices; he also saw dealers at tables exchanging foreign money.
15 Jesus made a whip from some ropes and chased them all out of the Temple. He drove out the sheep and cattle, scattered the money changers’ coins over the floor, and turned over their tables.
16 Then, going over to the people who sold doves, he told them, “Get these things out of here. Stop turning my Father’s house into a marketplace!”
17 Then his disciples remembered this prophecy from the Scriptures: “Passion for God’s house will consume me.”
18 But the Jewish leaders demanded, “What are you doing? If God gave you authority to do this, show us a miraculous sign to prove it.”
19 “All right,” Jesus replied. “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.”
20 “What!” they exclaimed. “It has taken forty-six years to build this Temple, and you can rebuild it in three days?”
21 But when Jesus said “this temple,” he meant his own body.
22 After he was raised from the dead, his disciples remembered he had said this, and they believed both the Scriptures and what Jesus had said.
5. Jesus’ First Ministry In Jerusalem (2:13-3:21)
John recorded a cleansing of the temple at the beginning of Jesus’ ministry whereas the other three Gospels recorded a temple cleansing toward the end of His public ministry (Matt. 21:12-13; Mark 11:15-16; Luke 19:45-46). Probably there were two cleansings, for there are differences in the narrations. John was undoubtedly aware of the other Gospels, and he supplemented them. The first cleansing caught the people by surprise. The second cleansing, about three years later, was one of the immediate causes of His death (cf. Mark 11:15-18).
The temple courts refer to a large courtyard, the Court of the Gentiles, surrounding the temple enclosure. The buying and selling of animals in the area was provided as a convenience for the pilgrims coming into Jerusalem. But abuses developed, and the pilgrim traffic became a major source of income for the city. With money to be made, worship easily became corrupted. The money changers were another convenience for the pilgrims. Temple dues had to be paid in the acceptable Tyrian coinage, and a high percentage was charged for changing coins.
2:15. Malachi predicted that One would come suddenly to the temple to purify the religion of the nation (Mal. 3:1-3). In moral indignation Jesus started a small stampede of the sheep and cattle, and overturned the tables.
2:18-19. The Jews—either the Jewish authorities or the merchants—demanded some proof for His right to challenge the existing order (“Jews demand miraculous signs,” 1 Cor. 1:22). But instead of giving in to their demand, Jesus gave a veiled saying. As with His parables in the Synoptics, one purpose of an enigmatic saying was to puzzle the hearers who opposed Him. He desired that His hearers ponder the saying in order to perceive its significance. Destroy this temple is in the form of a command, but the sense is ironic or conditional. At Jesus’ trial He was accused of saying He could destroy the temple and raise it again in three days (Matt. 26:60-61).
2:20-21. Herod’s temple took 46 years to build. Jesus said He would rebuild the temple in three days. Jesus meant His body which, after his death, would be resurrected in three days.
The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures by Dallas Seminary Faculty.