Talk:Cleansing of the Temple

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This article is critically reviewed in this article by an expert.-- Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus | talk  18:45, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

To my eyes it appears to be not so much a review of this article as a critique of Wikipedia by someone with an axe to grind. The author's name (Janet M. Giddings) generates a total of four ghits, which do not all appear to relate to the same person. Indeed, it could be that article linked to here is Ms Giddings's only net presence. Of course, you don't have to be on the net to be an expert, but these days serious academics tend to be more visible. BTLizard 13:44, 9 July 2007 (UTC)

The discussion of money-changing is contradictory - the intro suggests (and I believe this to be true) that all money needed to be changed, while further down it suggests (uncited) that this was a service for travelers. Henry Troup (talk) 13:21, 24 April 2009 (UTC)

Incident's importance omitted[edit]

Most often when this passage is cited, it is done so in service to any of 4 divergent points: 1. Jesus was not a pacifist, advocating and using force in cases of flagrant abuse and/or violations of property rights; 2. Jesus considered profiteering offensive to the point of justifying violence to stop it, specifically challenging Jewish custom; and 3. Jesus (anachronistically)recognized the right of the individual to make a "citizen's arrest" in situations of ongoing or flagrant abuse, using violence to the extent necessary to intervene in the illegal behavior. Yet there is no mention in the article of scholarly discussion or popular interpretation of these "pro-violence" passages. Overall, this is allegedly the only place in the Bible in which Jesus appears to exercise (and therefore, implicitly approve) violence, which most Christian societies (and many groups and/or individuals) claim as a right or responsibility under some circumstances. 4. This story also states the importance to keep the house of God pure. When Jesus overturned the Dove tables this is a symbol to all of mankind that the house of God shouldn't be used as a house of business. Even if the items being sold are used for the worship of God PlayCuz (talk) 16:32, 17 October 2009 (UTC)

I'm no pacifist, but I'm not sure how this advocates violence. If anything, it displays the futility of violence as this certainly as not the end of the practices that Jesus was protesting. It ended when Temple sacrifices ended. And these words of mine, like yours, are original research. Unless, of course, you can provide some sources. (... from 7 years ago ;) ) 2601:645:4100:BED2:617F:E19C:358A:6D90 (talk) 05:55, 18 August 2016 (UTC)

Undue weight?[edit]

IMO, there is too much attention (undue weight) given to the doves in this article. The article is about Jesus and the moneychangers, not Jesus and the doves. Comments? --SkagitRiverQueen (talk) 16:48, 20 November 2009 (UTC)

I have removed the second restating of how Jesus did nothing to the doves. It's really not relevant to a secular encyclopedia, and seemed redundant to state it more than once. As I stated above, the article is about Jesus and the moneychangers, not Jesus and the doves. IMO, the placement of this (and the placement of the speculation about *why* Jesus did nothing to the doves that has since been removed) is POV pushing and, of course, that is not allowed. Again, Wikipedia is an encyclopedia not a Bible commentary. --SkagitRiverQueen (talk) 17:03, 20 November 2009 (UTC)

Thanks for removing the obvious redundancy which was my unintentional error. IMO, the paragraph has ended up well. Afaprof01 (talk) 23:32, 20 November 2009 (UTC)


I'm an Atheist and don't know much about Christianity. Did Jesus have some kind of authority? Because I am having issues understanding how one man could destroy other peoples livelihood without them resisting. Was it some super rage that gave him god strength? Did people respect him and fly? Where they so stunned they fled? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:42, 11 April 2012 (UTC)

Despite not looking for it, Jesus had considerable political clout because of the mob, to put it in Roman terms. Messianic figures were common in Palestine during this time. For his specific time, it would seem that Jesus carried the largest following, certainly the Gospels describe it as enough to put fear into the hearts of the Jewish establishment. The evening before the crucifixion, the Temple authorities were afraid to arrest Jesus in broad day light and perhaps instigate a riot against them, and so they resorted to arresting him at night away from the crowds. The same principle applies to the leeway Jesus had when performing a that radical act in the Temple courtyard a few days before. He was at the very height of his popularity. The rebels were seeking to ride his sizable coattails to a violent overthrow of the Jewish establishment and the Roman occupation. This sort of rebellious display was right up the rebels alley. The last thing the establishment wanted (Jewish or Roman) was an all out, concerted rebellion. I suppose they felt the easiest route was to just let Jesus do his protest in the Temple and hope it dies down... or die with him. 2601:645:4100:BED2:617F:E19C:358A:6D90 (talk) 06:07, 18 August 2016 (UTC)

E.P. Sanders, in ''Jesus and Judaism, pp. 301ff. made points similar to these: (1) Jesus conducted a very small-scale "prophetic action," or acted-out prophecy. The Temple Guards and Roman Antonia Tower detachment could see down into the Temple, yet they did not arrest Jesus. No disciples were allowed to help (implication is they were surprised). Nothing is said about Jesus being angry. The act was neither revolutionary nor violent (but see #4 below). (2) The action predicted the permanent replacement of the sacrificial cult with a universal ("all nations") Judaism of "prayer" and justice ("bandits"). (3) The change would mark the "Last Days" in which God's will would be perfectly done on earth, led by a Messianic king (Jesus). To Sanders, the chief priests and worshipers had been doing nothing wrong day-after-day. God's plan had just reached a great turning point. (4) The Chief Priests construed Jesus' act as a curse on the Temple and hence decided to arrest him for execution whenever they could without causing an uproar. His death would disprove any divine approval of Jesus' "threatening prediction." Jakob3 (talk) 15:38, 9 August 2012 (UTC)

Should the church be used for political conversations?[edit]

While it is obvious that Jesus said he didn't want God's house used for profiteering, it is unclear on what is acceptable. Is it acceptable to use the church for political gain? If Jesus were alive today, would he like the involvement of the church in politics to the point that politicians often speak at or give "sermons" for political influence? Is this not profiting from the church? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:45, 14 April 2012 (UTC)

Money changers[edit]

The money changers provided a service to the worshipers. The Roman coins had the image of the Caesar, a graven image, which was in contravention of the Torah. Changing the coins for simple coins without the graven image was necessary to maintain the holiness of the Temple. Why was 'Jesus' so incensed by this? He should have been pleased. Clearly the author of the text was not conversant with the Jewish religion and made up this story to denigrate the Jews. Just one of many inaccuracies in the Christian Bible. 'Jesus' is a myth written by liberals with a political agenda which after a few hundred years brought them to power across the globe. That power is now waning and a new mythology, a new power, that of Islam is taking over. Islam rejects the divinity of 'Jesus'. Islam does not rely on miracles and proof-texts for its rational. It is the inarticulate duplicitous ramblings of a war lord out to conquer the entire world! — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:35, 23 November 2012 (UTC)

Or it wasn't made up and the Jewish establishment had sunken so low and drifted from being the blessing they were blessed to be, that no one could object loud enough to stop the corruption. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2601:645:4100:BED2:617F:E19C:358A:6D90 (talk) 06:09, 18 August 2016 (UTC)

Tyrian Money. I'm confused. The article says:

"Gentile money could not be used at the Temple because of the graven images on it." Why then was Tyrian money with an engraving of Baal on it acceptable? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:43, 9 July 2014 (UTC)

That use of the Tyrian shekel for the temple tax is probably precisely what Jesus objected to with the moneychangers and it was a significant argument within Judaism at the time. The Sadduccees controlled all Tyrian shekels (not legal tender by then for anything except temple tax) and distributed them to moneychangers. The exchange rate/cost of those shekels rose over time because of both the monopoly and the debasement of Roman currency. So effectively the cost of that temple tax obligation rose over time - making it more difficult for the poor to pay it. And it is likely that the oral tradition of the aftermath of that incident (the parable of 'Render unto Caesar') involved a shekel - not a denarius - which greatly changes the meaning/importance of that parable. Render unto Baal what is Baal's and unto God what is God's is an existential challenge to the Sanhedrin. This was an issue until the Temple revolt of 70CE - and one of the first acts was the minting of a different coin for the temple tax — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:16, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

This may be true, but it is not what the article currently says. It implies that Tyrian money was used but that money with graven images could not be. That is a contradiction. There presumably was a reason why money was changed to Tyrian money - whether it was a widely accepted reason is another matter. The Tyrian article suggests it was to do with silver content. I've added a request for a citation because at the moment the article does not make sense. Francis Davey (talk) 14:08, 6 December 2017 (UTC)

Eastern Orthodoxy rejects this as Jesus's "only physical force"[edit]

Over on reddit, several Orthodox Christians are confused by the part that says that Eastern Orthodoxy rejects the idea that "this is the only account of Jesus using physical force in any of the Gospels". We've added the citation needed tag to that claim, but we think that this part should be removed unless someone can find a citation for it. And if a citation is found, it should probably be reworded since we are quite sure that this is not a dogmatic teaching of the entire church, but might be a view held by some in the church.

Here is the edit that introduced this claim. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Jhknight (talkcontribs) 14:43, 3 September 2014 (UTC)

Seeing as it's been unsourced for a year, and it looks to be by an anonymous editor who made no other contribution, I just removed it.--T. Anthony (talk) 05:33, 28 October 2014 (UTC)

Very dubious additions, based on far later Jewish sources[edit]

[ some clean-up needed, at the least. Johnbod (talk) 17:17, 27 March 2016 (UTC)