Jesus' Cleansing of the Temple: Review of Matthews' Book

3192 Words Feb 1st, 2018 13 Pages
While one could argue that Jesus is frequently (and justifiably) angry with the disciples from time to time, this is the only moment that Jesus' anger moves him to physical force. Although the event is recorded in all four of the Gospels, this study will focus specifically on its rendering in Matthew, because when considered in the context of Matthew's larger narrative, one can see how Jesus' decision to cleanse the temple does not represent an aberration in either his character or theological message, but rather the natural culmination of Jesus' life and works prior to that point, and demonstrates a kind of revolutionary, anti-authoritarian element of Jesus' message of salvation that is all too often overlooked by Christians and critics alike.
Before getting into the details of Jesus' cleansing of the temple as outlined in the book of Matthew, it will first be necessary to provide some context to the narrative. The cleansing of the temple can be found in Matthew 21:12-17, but the rest of the chapter includes important contextual information that allows one to better appreciate this passage both in its immediate historical context and its larger theological one. The cleansing of…