Scripture Reading Reflection


Scripture Reading Reflection
Jesus’ actions in Sunday’s Gospel (John 2:13-25) caused absolute chaos. Jesus not only cleansed the temple, Jesus shut the whole operation down.
Jesus, using whipcords, drove out cattle, sheep, and overturned money changers’ tables: “Jesus told those who were selling the doves, ‘Take these things out of here! Stop making my Father’s house a market-place!’”
The tabernacle of God’s presence was the temple. Without the cattle, sheep, doves and a money exchange system, worship became impossible.
Temple leaders were upset at Jesus’ actions. Jesus declared that in the future the temple of worship will be Jesus’ crucified risen body.
Sunday’s Gospel makes all believing communities very nervous. What if Jesus stormed through the doors of the community’s nicely designed, decorated and well-appointed worship space with whipcords in hand and made worship impossible. The community would know for sure that its worship is grounded in Jesus’ crucified risen body by simply moving its worship space elsewhere.
Christian worship really only needs a book of Scriptures, a table, dry bread and cheap wine, plus leaders and people willing to believe and live that Jesus’ crucified risen body now abides in them. If more is needed for worship, beware of the whipcords.
(Father Andrew Kelly is a retired priest of the Diocese of Davenport.)

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