The “kids” used to tease me when I introduced them to the idea of “Jesus-in-the-Temple Angry” thinking the idea existed only to justify whatever soapbox I happened to be building. I simply wanted to make the point that some things perhaps upset God and we should be frustrated as well. I stand by my opinion.

However, my view of Jesus-in-the-Temple Angry expanded a bit this morning. I read about how Jesus threw out everyone who had “set up shop” in the Temple, buying and selling. Loan sharks and dove merchants eliminated. But I’ve always missed a key part of this story: 
Now there was room for the blind and crippled to get in. They came to Jesus and he healed them (v. 15). 
I love a good rant about consumerism. But, it turns out, the evils behind commerce became evils not because of inherent evilness but because of the exclusion of goodness. Until the merchants were driven from the Temple, the blind and lame couldn’t get in.

Other than the token bake sale, we don’t find many mercantiles in the church. However, I think a deeper truth still applies: What fringe could we trim to make room for the blind and lame around us? How are we set up to serve ourselves rather than those who need the healing touch of Jesus?

Who are left sitting outside the gate because we’ve got what we want set up inside?

Maybe we don’t need to cleanse the building of moneylenders; but a fair question to ask is what is in the way of being true to our mission and message? 

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