John 2: 13-22
As Jesus entered the temple, he discovered how deceiving appearance could be. While the place appeared to fulfill its function, Jesus knew that its purpose had been forgotten.
Moving through the temple with a whip, he created holy chaos. Jesus left no tables unturned and no one untouched.
How about us? Today’s text pushes us to imagine Jesus entering our own sanctuaries and storming our Sunday service by shouting that “Everyone should get out! Stop making my Father’s house a marketplace!”
The text offers us an opportunity to ask whether we are the temple functionaries and whether we, as the faith community, not only fulfill its function but also complete its purpose.
I invite us to question ourselves about “what things” really may be destroying the temple and our community in these days.
A virtual worship? Is it really the one destroying the temple? It might be true somewhat, in terms of facing and expecting lots of challenges for a small-sized-congregation like us.
However, I believe that we may have worse problems that we need to recognize these days—anger, hate, violence, inharmony, and divisions. Those are the ones that keep preventing us from being one in Christ as a part of the body of Jesus Christ. Those are the ones that may destroy God’s temple.
I’d like to pose these questions for each of us as we keep journeying forward in this Lenten season. What things make us feel angry? What is our anger trying to teach us? And where is God in all this?
Can we be angry while we do not sin? Can we be angry for whatever it is inside of us that tempts us to run away from the cross? And, can we be angry with ourselves when we have no problem becoming more and more unlike Jesus?
When we see our body as the temple of God, how many of us may have money changers and merchants inside of us.
As we keep cleansing our mind and heart during this Lenten season, it is time to invite Jesus to create holy chaos inside of us—turning over seemingly unturned things—our own convictions, illusions, and driving “self” out to restore God’s purpose for us as the temple of God by fighting a good fight to become Jesus-like.