And found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting:
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Alcuin of York
Zeal, taken in a good sense, is acertain fervor of the Spirit, by which the mind, all human fears forgotten, is stirred up to thedefense of the truth.
To take the passage mystically, God enters His Church spiritually every day, and marks each one’s behavior there. Let us be careful then, when we are in God’s Church, that we indulge not in stories, or jokes, or hatreds, or lusts, leston a sudden He come and scourge us, and drive us out of His Church.
Such sacrifices were prescribed to the people, in condescension to their carnal minds; to prevent them from turning aside to idols. They sacrificed sheep, and oxen, and doves.
He who was to be scourged by them, was first of all the scourger; and when He had made a scourge of small cords, He drove them all out of the temple.
It is evident that this was done on two several occasions; the first mentioned by John, the last by the other three.
So that temple was still a figure only, and our Lord cast out of it all who came to it as a market. And what did they sell? Things that were necessary for the sacrifice of that time. What if He had found men drunken? If the house of God ought not to be a house of merchandise, ought it to be a house of drunkenness? .
He then is eaten up with zeal for God’s house, who desires to correct all that he sees wrong there; and, if he cannot correct, endures and mourns. In your house you busy yourself to prevent matters going wrong; in the house of God, where s...
Our Lord on coming to Jerusalem, immediately entered the temple to pray; giving usan example that, wheresoever we go, our first visit should be to the house of God to pray. And He found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep, and doves, and the changers of money sitting.
Those however, who came from a distance, being unable to bring with them the animals required for sacrifice, brought the money instead. For their convenience the Scribes and Pharisees ordered animals to be sold in the temple, in order that, when the people had bought and offered them afterwards, they might sell them again, and thus make great profits. And changers of money sitting; changers of money sat at the table to supply change to buyers and sellers. But our Lord disapproving of any worldly business in His house, especially one of so questionable a kind, drove out all engaged in it.
The Evangelist sets before us both natures of Christ: the human in that His mother accompanied Him to Capernaum; the divine, in...
The Jews are again hereby too convicted of despising the laws given them, and making of no account the Mosaic writings, looking only to their own love of gain. For whereas the law commanded that they who were about to enter into the Divine temple should purify themselves in many ways; those who had the power of forbidding it hindered not the bankers or money-changers, and others besides, whose employment was gain, usury and increase, in their lusts (for the whole aim of merchants is comprised in these things): they hindered them not from defiling the holy court, from entering into it as it were with unwashen feet, yea rather they themselves altogether used to enjoin it, that God might say truly of them, Many pastors have destroyed My vineyard, they have: trodden My portion under foot, they have made My pleasant portion a desolate wilderness, they have made it desolate. For of a truth the Lord's vineyard was destroyed, being taught to trample on the Divine worship itself, and through th...
Lo, He speaks of God as His Father, and they are not angry, for they think He means it in a common sense. But afterwards when He spoke more openly, and showed that He meant equality, they were enraged. In Matthew’s account too, on driving them out, He says, You have made it (My Father’s house) a den of thieves. This was just: before His Passion, and therefore He uses severer language. But the former being at the beginning of His miracles, His answer is milder and more indulgent.
But why did Christ use such violence? He was about to heal on the Sabbath day, and to do many things which appeared to them transgressions of the Law. That He might not appear therefore to be acting contrary to God, He did this at His own peril; and thus gave them to understand, that He who exposed Himself to such peril to defend the decency of the house, did not despise the Lord of that house. For the same reason, to show His agreement with God, He said not, the Holy house, but, My Father’s house. It follows, ...
Nor did He cast out only those who bought and sold, but their goods also: The sheep, and the oxen and poured out the changers’ money, and overthrew the tables, i.e. of the money changers, which were coffers ofpence.