Sam Roiko | The Voice of Zion March 2021 --
Jesus went into the temple of God, and cast out all them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves, and said unto them, It is written, My house shall be called the house of prayer; but ye have made it a den of thieves. And the blind and the lame came to him in the temple; and he healed them. And when the chief priests and scribes saw the wonderful things that he did, and the children crying in the temple, and saying, Hosanna to the Son of David; they were sore displeased, and said unto him, Hearest thou what these say? And Jesus saith unto them, Yea; have ye never read, Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast perfected praise? And he left them, and went out of the city into Bethany; and he lodged there. – Matt. 21:12–17
The theme for Palm Sunday brings us back to the first Advent Sunday, where we remembered how “Your king comes in humility.” This shows how the happenings of Christmas and Easter are intertwined, and that both are integral to God’s salvation plan being fulfilled in His Son, Jesus Christ.
After His entry into Jerusalem on a colt, our Savior went into the temple of God and cast out those who sold and bought and exchanged money. The Passover festival drew people from around the known world to Jerusalem, who came with the currency of their own locality or had Roman money. However, only the Jewish currency was allowed for offering in the temple, and the travelers needed to exchange their money to the Jewish coins. This gave an opportunity for greed, and the travelers often had to exchange their money at overpriced rates.
Jesus Knew Their Hearts
Jesus, who was true God and true man, knew the hearts of all people and saw how the lust for greed overshadowed the real purpose of the festive Passover worship service. In his righteous zeal, He overthrew the tables. “For the zeal of thine house hath eaten me up; and the reproaches of them that reproached thee are fallen upon me” (Ps. 69:9). He noted, as the prophet Isaiah had written, that the house of God was to be “a house of prayer for all people” (Isa. 56:7) but they had turned it into a den of thieves. He spoke openly of that which was wrong, rebuked sin as sin, and as a result He suffered the reproach, or contempt, of those whose consciences were pricked. The preaching of God’s kingdom either heals or offends.
After Jesus rebuked the money changers, He ministered to the lowly people. The blind and the lame came to Him in the temple, and He healed them. Children were there crying and singing Hosanna to the Son of David. The joy of the children and those who found a place of healing with Jesus was evident.
In Their Wisdom, They Knew Not God
The chief priests and scribes saw the wonderful things that happened and were sore displeased. The joy of God’s children was absent in them. Jesus had said, “They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick” (Matt. 9:12). The scribes and chief priests did not find themselves in need of healing, nor was there joy that others were healed.
Instead of rejoicing in happiness at the sight of Jesus’ ministry to the lowly, the scribes and chief priests were offended. They asked Jesus, don’t you hear what they are saying? They couldn’t bear to hear the cries of rejoicing children and those who were healed. Jesus reminded them what the psalmist says: “Out of the mouths of babes and sucklings thou has perfected praise.” Much earlier Jesus had rejoiced, “I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes. Even so, Father: for so it seemed good in thy sight” (Matt. 11:25–26).
Only through Faith Do We Comprehend
The way of faith is a lowly way, which our King of glory walked. The human mind cannot understand or comprehend this way of faith as the Proverb states, “There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death” (Prov. 14:12).
Also, Paul wrote to the Corinthians how the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness, but unto us which are saved, it is the power of God. God has made foolish the wisdom and understanding of the world: After that, in the wisdom of God, the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe (1 Cor. 1:18–21).
This pathway is one of humility, but it leads to glory. It is such a pathway that those who travel there, even though they be blind, or stumbling, or deaf, or weak, there they can experience the opening of their eyes and ears and find healing and strength to continue to travel. The wayfaring ones, the ones who travel there, even though they would be fools, they will not be lost (Isa. 35). Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6). When we can continue to travel this lowly pathway prepared by our Lord and Savior, we too will once obtain our goal, eternal life in the bliss and glory of heaven.