King's Business - 1913-07



Lord pointed to the very greatest sign of all of His Messianic calling, namely, the resurrection (Rom. 1:4; Acts 2:24-36; 5:30-32). It was tc this same sign of His resurrection that our Lord pointed the Jews on other occasions when they sought a sign (Matt. 12:38-40). The resurrection of Christ from the dead is the great proof of our Lord’s claims. It car­ ries everything else with it. There is no need of any other miracles if thi* miracle be established, and it has been. It is the best proven fact of history. Of course, the Jews did not under­ stand our Lord’s answers at the time, and Jesus was looking beyond those who demanded a sign, to a future day and to His followers who would then appreciate the word spoken now (v. 22).. But anything relating to the temple had an intense interest for the' Jews and the words spoken by our Lord on this occasion, though not un­ derstood, were remembered and in a perverted form were brought forward as evidence against Him at His trial (Matt. 26:61; Mark 14:58 cf. Acts 6:13, 14.) It should be noted that John is the only one who mentions this utterance at the time that it was made, but that it is the synoptic Gos­ pels that mention the perversion of the utterance at the time of the trial. Indeed, the synoptic Gospels do not mention this cleansing of the temple at all but the one that took place toward the close of our Lord’s ministry. The synoptics regarded the latter cleansing as fitting -in better with the plan of their narrative. John writing much later than they recalls this earlier cleansing and gives it its fitting place in His Gospel which was written to prove that Jesus is the Christ the Son of God (ch. 20:31), and therefore with marveious appropriateness be­ gins with His first public act in which He proclaimed Himself to all seeing eyes and hearts as the Christ (Mes­

siah). Blind critics can only see a discrepancy between the Gospels in that in which open-eyed souls see a marvelous appropriateness. .The word translated “temple” here is not the same as that translated “temple” in v. 14 (see notes on vs. 14-16). The Jews understood Him to refer to the temple of Herod, but he referred to His body, which was the real temple of Jehovah, for God tabernacled in Him (ch. 1 :14; Col. 2:9). Solomon’s temple and Herod’s temple were only types in so far as God dwelt in them and Jesus,Himself was the antitype; He alone fully realizing in Himself the meaning of temple. The true temple is the seat of God’s presence among His people and Jesus alone was fully that (ch. 1:14; Col. 2:9). Jesus constantly insisted on the Fath­ er’s dwelling in Him (ch. 10; 38; 14:10, 11, 20; 17:21) which, of Course, involved the truth here so plainly set forth that He was the real temple. There was still deeper mean­ ing in Jesus’ speaking of the destruc­ tion of His body as the destruction of- the temple, and leaving the Jews to suppose that He referred to the destruction of Herod’s temple; for “the rejection and death of Christ, in whom ‘ dwelt the fulness of God brought with it necessarily the de­ struction of the temple,” i. e., Herod’s temple. When they rejected and killed their Messiah they destroyed their temple, though it was forty years before the temple actually lay in ruins (see Matt. 23 :37-24:2)\ The word which the Jews used for “de­ stroy” is,a very suggestive one in this connection. It means “dissolve,” rather than “destroy” and sets forth the destruction which comes through dissolution, and thus is peculiarly ap­ propriate to the destruction of the human body. Here at the very beginning of His ministry, Christ clearly foresees how

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