King's Business - 1913-07



cleansing of the temple, He told them that they had made His Father’s House a “House of merchandise” ; but at His last cleansing of the temple, when they had come back again and defiled the temple again, He told them that they had made His Father’s House a “den of robbers (Matt. 21: 13). If men will not radically and permanently repent they go from bad to worse. It is to be feared that sometimes to-day the House of God is not merely made “a house of mer­ chandise” but “a den of robbers.” There are two words translated “temple” in the Authorized Version. The one so translated in verses 14, 15 denotes the whole .sacred - enclosure with all the courts and porticoes. This word is never used figuratively. The word so translated in verses 19, 20, 21 denotes the sacred building itself,- and is used figuratively of the body of our Ford (v. 21) and of Christians who form His body (1 Cor. 3:16, 17) and the body of the individual be­ liever (1 Cor. 6:19). It was in the Court of the Gentiles that the traffic was carried on, not in the sanctuary proper. There is deep significance in our Lord’s speaking of the temple as “My Father’s House.” He so spoke of it on His first recorded visit to the tem­ ple (Luke 2:49 R. V .).' When He finally left the temple (Matt. 24:1). He spoke of it to the Jews as “your house (Matt. 23:38), as they had made their own what truly belonged to God and had driven God’s Son from God’s house. His purpose in speaking of it as “My Father’s house” in the instance before us, was that He might reveal His relation to God as God’s Son and thus declare His Messiahship. This was an appeal to and test of the faith of the people. On His earlier visit- to the temple When He was twelve years of age, He showed Himself as a Son in His own

house, but in this passage when He begins His public ministry He reveals Himself as the Son of God over His own house (Heb. 3 :6). He here pub­ licly calls God His Father, thus mak­ ing Himself equal with God (cf. ch. 10: 30-33). This in the eyes of the Jews, as they would not accept Him as the Messiah and Son of God, was an unpardonable sin, blasphemy (ch. 5:18, cf. 10:38). V. 17. “And (omit, and) his dis­ ciples remembered that it was written. The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up (better, shall eat me up).” The disciples were greatly im­ pressed by what they saw their Lord do and at once recalled the Messianic prediction of the Old Testament found in Psalm 69:9, and they rightly interpreted our Lord’s actions at the present time as being the fulfilment of that prophecy. They did not see what would ultimately be the fatal end for our Lord of His zeal for pur­ ity in His Father’s house, though this is predicted in the remainder of the Psalm which Christ’s action brought to their mind (see e. g. Ps. 69: 19-21). But Christ Himself foresaw it (John 2:19-22). It was simply the zeal of the Lord which impressed them and occupied their mind. It is very sug­ gestive fact that the Apostle Paul in Romans 15:3 applies to Christ the last half of Psalms 69:9 of which the dis­ ciples here apply the first half. The expression “the zeal of thine house,” of course, means “zeal for thine house” as it is rendered in the Ameri­ can Revision, but the rendering given in the Authorized Version is a literal translation. The Greek word trans­ lated “zeal” comes from a verb mean­ ing to boil with heat and it sets forth the intense fervor, the burning jeal­ ousy, of our Lord for the purity of His Father’s house and worship. Our Lord was consumed with a fire of un-

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