Sunday, June 6, 2010

Christ Driving the Moneychangers from the Temple

Image: Christ Driving the Moneychangers from the Temple (1626), oil painting on oak panel by Dutch painter Rembrandt van Rijn (1606-1669), dimensions 43.1 cm x 32 cm, currently located at Pushkin Museum, Moscow.

The incident of ‘Cleansing of the Temple’ occurs in all four Gospels in the New Testament. It occurs near the end of the Synoptic Gospels (Mark 11:15-19, 11:27-33; Matthew 21:12-17, 21:23-27; Luke 19:45-48, 20:1-8; and John 2:13-16). Jesus visited the Temple in Jerusalem, Herod's Temple, where the courtyard was filled with livestock and the tables of the moneychangers, who changed the Greek and Roman money for Jewish and Tyrian money, which were the only coinage used in Temple ceremonies. Creating a whip from some cords, ‘he drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and the oxen, and poured out the changers' money and overturned the tables. But he said to those who sold doves, ‘Get these out of here! Do not make My Father's house a house of merchandise!’ (John 2:13-16).

“And Jesus went into the temple of God, and cast out all them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves, And said unto them, It is written, My house shall be called the house of prayer; but ye have made it a den of thieves” - Matthew 21:12-13

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