And he went into the temple, and began to cast out them that sold therein, and them that bought;…
In contemplating this action we are at first sight startled by its peremptoriness. "Is this," we say to ourselves — "is this He who is called the Lamb of God? He of whom prophecy said that He should neither strive nor cry; He who said of Himself, "Come to Me; I am meek and lowly of heart"? Is there not some incongruity between that meek and gentle character and those vehement acts and words. No, my brethren, there is no incongruity. As the anger which is divorced from meekness is but unsanctified passion, so the false meekness which can never kindle at the sight of wrong into indignation, is closely allied, depend upon it, to moral collapse. One of the worst things that the inspired Psalmist can find it in his heart to say of a man is, "Neither doth he abhor anything that is evil." Bishop Butler has shown that anger, being a part of our natural constitution is intended by our Maker to be excited, to be exercised upon certain legitimate objects; and the reason why anger is as a matter of fact generally sinful is, because it is generally wielded, not by our sense of absolute right and truth, but by our self-love, and, therefore, on wrong and needless occasions. Our Lord's swift indignation was just as much a part of His perfect sanctity as was His silent meekness in the hour of His passion. We may dare to say it, that He could not, being Himself, have been silent m that temple court, for that which met His eye was an offence first against the eighth commandment of the Decalogue. The money brokers were habitually fraudulent. But then this does not explain His treatment of the sellers of the doves, which shows that He saw in the whole transaction an offence against the first and second commandments. All irreverence is really, when we get to the bottom of it, unbelief. The first great truth that we know is the solitary supremacy of the Eternal God; the second, which is its consequence, the exacting character of His love. God is said, in the second commandment, to be a "jealous God."
Parallel VersesKJV: And he went into the temple, and began to cast out them that sold therein, and them that bought;