Monday, April 2, 2012

The Passion Week - Monday

Let us continue with the events that occurred on Monday.  Mark relates these to us in Chapter 11 Verses 12-19.

Mark 11:12-14 - On the following day, when they came from Bethany, he was hungry. And seeing in the distance a fig tree in leaf, he went to see if he could find anything on it. When he came to it, he found nothing but leaves, for it was not the season for figs. And he said to it, “May no one ever eat fruit from you again.” And his disciples heard it.

Robertson, in his NT Word Pictures, states of verse 13 that “The early figs in Palestine do not get ripe before May or June, the later crop in August. It was not the season of figs, Mark notes. But this precocious tree in a sheltered spot had put out leaves as a sign of fruit. It had promise without performance.”

Mark 11:15-17 - And they came to Jerusalem. And he entered the temple and began to drive out those who sold and those who bought in the temple, and he overturned the tables of the money-changers and the seats of those who sold pigeons. And he would not allow anyone to carry anything through the temple. And he was teaching them and saying to them, “Is it not written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer for all the nations’? But you have made it a den of robbers.”

Of verse 15, the Geneva Bible Footnotes state that “Christ shows that he is indeed the true King and high Priest, and therefore the one who takes revenge upon those who do not show proper reverence for the holy function of the temple.”  Also, Christ had previously cleansed the Temple in John 2.  His words “den of thieves” in this passage were not as kind as those in His first cleansing.  In John 2:16, Christ said “Don't you dare turn my Father's house into a market!”  Verse 16 is interesting in that it appears that people were using the Temple as a thoroughfare – just carrying their “water-pots” or “vessels” through it.  Christ even stopped this.  He then quotes Isaiah 56:7 as the proclamation that the Temple (God’s house) will be open to all nations for prayer, but then declares that the path of Jeremiah 7:11 was taken and that now it has become a “den of thieves!”

Mark 11:18-19 - And the chief priests and the scribes heard it and were seeking a way to destroy him, for they feared him, because all the crowd was astonished at his teaching. And when evening came they went out of the city.

Again, Christ has now angered the religious people.  This time, it was both Sadducees and Pharisees.  However, His teachings had gotten the masses on His side (they are still hoping He is the conquering Messiah). Although those who were praising him on Sunday would be asking for his crucifixion on Friday.

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