March 26, 2000

John 2:13-22 (CEV)

Not long before the Jewish festival of Passover, Jesus went to Jerusalem. There he found people selling cattle, sheep, and doves in the temple. He also saw moneychangers sitting at their tables. So he took some rope and made a whip. Then he chased everyone out of the temple, together with their sheep and cattle. He turned over the tables of the money changes and scattered their coins.

Jesus said to the people who had been selling doves, "Get those doves out of here! Don't make my Father's house a marketplace."

The disciples then remembered that the Scriptures say, "My love for your house burns in me like a fire."

The Jewish leaders asked Jesus, "What miracle will you work to show us why you have done this?"

Destroy this temple," Jesus answered, "and in three days I will build it again!"

The leaders replied, "It took forty-six years to build this temple. What make you think you can rebuild it in three days?"

But Jesus was talking about his body as a temple. And when he was raised from death, his disciples remembered what he had told them. Then they believed the Scriptures and the words of Jesus.


1. This story shows up early in John and late in Matthew, Mark, and Luke. Whether early or late it is a critical scene. It raises the question of trust. In what do you place your trust. In the green stuff we know as money? It was less than fifty years ago that we added those words to our currency - "In God we trust." But it is still pretty easy to get confused between the solidity of what money can buy and the uncertainty of when God is going to come through with what we want. Essentially we end up with the slogan being pretty empty and reality setting in that it is in money we trust.

Where have you been putting your trust these days? What would this story look like if you substituted this picture?

Not long before your Christmas, Jesus came to your house. There he found all your presents which were hidden. So he took some garbage bags and threw out all your presents. -- How would you feel?

2. In terms of resurrection we get some conflicting pictures. Jesus rises from the dead or Jesus was raised from the dead? Can it be both ways? Does it make a difference for you whether Jesus pulls himself up by his own bootstraps or if GOD reaches down to raise Jesus?

3. Isn't it interesting that here at the beginning of John the first miracle of changing water into wine at Mary's request and it is recorded that "his disciples put their faith in him" is immediately followed by the temple leaders asking Jesus for a miracle to justify what he did and it is recorded that "when he was raised from death, his disciples remembered what he had told them. Then they believed the Scriptures and the words of Jesus."

How do you play these back and forth? How do we both have faith and not have that faith until later? It is in such in between times that we live and move and have our being. Keep playing for it is important to your continuing spiritual growth.

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