(The gospel writer Mark is speaking to us.)
“Finally, some action!” That’s what I thought to myself the day after Jesus entered Jerusalem. We had returned to the Temple, and Jesus went to work! In my Gospel, I described it this way: “He began to drive out those who were selling and those who were buying in the temple, and he overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who sold doves; and he would not allow anyone to carry anything through the temple.” (Mark 11:15-16)
Surely now, I thought, Jesus would announce that he was taking charge. Surely, he would call down angels from heaven and show his power! Surely, now we would sit with him at seats of authority! Surely now all those who opposed his way would be driven from the land. I trembled with excitement, thinking that at long last, we were getting our way, that we would control the Temple and of the government, and that finally—finally!—we would be in charge.
Imagine my disappointment, then, when Jesus suddenly left the Temple. He wasn’t interested in claiming power for himself. He was rather protesting what the Temple had become. Tomorrow I’ll tell you what his protest was all about.
Heavenly Father, forgive us for the times we have thought that, because we follow you, we should be in charge. Forgive our lust for power. Forgive our desire to force our ways upon others. Send your Spirit into our midst and teach us to follow the non-violent way of your Son. Amen.