Jerusalem at Passover, over crowded, under resourced and really cold. The dew is heavy in the mornings, not much of this wood is good for burning. Staying outside the city makes sense, but it is not very convenient. Though after yesterday it more than makes sense, it is essential. When he lifted the tables and shouted at the sellers it looked like he was a madman – I have seen him angry before, when a demon invades a life, or when the Pharisees speak of rules and once when we pushed the children away. But not anger like this. He looked like crazy Ezekiel – shouting and chasing and and whipping and crying, the Temple moved from normal noise to silence through the gateway of his anger. There was shock and then there was anger at him. I do not understand what he did, why he did it, or what he did it for. It is just making the tension worse – he’s walked away from trouble before: this time it feel different. Hopefully we’ll get through this week unscathed.
I could not sleep last night. This is so exciting. He walks from a procession of people proclaiming him king and storms into the Temple to purify it from the filth of traders and marketers. Is this the beginning of the end of Roman rule? He IS the Messiah, he has had us keep it quiet, he has spoken in riddles and mysteries but now, he is about to act. I know it, there is a different look in his eyes, a different tone in his voice. I will be ready; we have waited for these days. My sword will stand with others and we will once again have a free Israel as in Great David’s days – from the sea to the Jordan, from Egypt to Assryria we will be free. He will become the great Shepherd King and under the shadow of his rule we will know peace and prosperity: he has spoken of death but there is a long time and much to be acheived before then. It is no wonder, with so much happening, that I could not sleep last night.
The master seems so tired, so preoccupied – his gaze seems to be somewhere else, just around the corner. The others are caught up in the moment of parades and protests but there is a tone in his voice, a look in his eye, that concerns me. It has always been there, when he asked us to follow him it was always TO somewhere: it is where he is leading that is the mystery and the concern. He looks so tired, so preoccupied – and I don’t know where this will lead, but I do not think it will lead where I want to go.
He is a lunatic, this Nazarene; he came shouting and cursing, he turned over the tables of the holy sellers, his words and actions made no sense but they brought shock and confusion. He is a wicked man I think, he has no respect for the Temple or for God. He is a lunatic – after all he is from Galilee.
When Jesus entered the temple courts, he began to drive out those who were selling. “It is written,” he said to them, “‘My house will be a house of prayer’; but you have made it ‘a den of robbers.’