Listen:  104 Question 6

To understand what is happening in this portion, let’s read John 2:13-17, “And the Jews’ passover was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem, And found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting: 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; And said unto them that sold doves, Take these things hence; make not my Father’s house an house of merchandise. And his disciples remembered that it was written, The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up.”  At the time of the Passover, the Lord and His disciples went to Jerusalem.  Upon approaching the temple, the Lord was outraged that this holy place had become a marketplace.  There were those there who were selling animals to be used for sacrifice; there were those there who exchanged money for those Jews who came from foreign lands, so they could pay their temple taxes.  It was understood that these money changers made a good profit from these exchanges, as did the sellers of animals.

The Lord, in His great passion to preserve the dignity of His Father’s house, drove out the merchants and overturned the tables of the money changers.  Seeing the Lord act in this manner reminded the Disciples of what Psalms 69:9 said, “For the zeal of thine house hath eaten me up; and the reproaches of them that reproached thee are fallen upon me.”  Psalm 69 is a Messianic psalm, which means it is prophetic of the coming Messiah.  At this point, the disciples realized that this portion was in reference to the Lord Jesus.  Another verse from this chapter, which is immediately recognizable as referring to the Lord Jesus is Psalms 69:21 which says, “They gave me also gall for my meat; and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.”  This verse was fulfilled when the Lord was on the cross, suffering for our sins.  We read in John 19:29-30, “Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar: and they filled a spunge with vinegar, and put it upon hyssop, and put it to his mouth. When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.”

It is important to notice that Christ disrupted the temple merchants twice during His ministry years; once at the beginning, as we have here, and another time towards the end of His earthly ministry.  Let’s read Matthew 21:12-13, “And Jesus went into the temple of God, and cast out all them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves, And said unto them, It is written, My house shall be called the house of prayer; but ye have made it a den of thieves.”  Notice carefully how that in John 2:16, the Lord referred to the temple as “my Father’s house”, while in Matthew 21:13, He referred to the temple as “My house.”  Here He clearly claims to be God, as indeed He is.  (104.6)