July 8

Text: Matthew 21:14-17

And the blind and the lame came to Him in the temple, and He healed them.  But when the chief priests and the scribes saw the wonderful things that He had done, and the children who were crying out in the temple and saying, "Hosanna to the Son of David," they became indignant, and said to Him, "Do You hear what these are saying?" And Jesus *said to them, "Yes; have you never read, 'OUT OF THE MOUTH OF INFANTS AND NURSING BABES THOU HAST PREPARED PRAISE FOR THYSELF'?"  And He left them and went out of the city to Bethany, and lodged there. (NASB)

“Stop invading my turf!”  Most every adult has at least one turf.  It is an area or a performance that is “mine.”  It may be a job, a task, or something “I” am in charge of performing.  Whatever it is, only “I” have the right to do it; nobody has permission to “do it” without asking “me” first.  If changes occur, “I” must be consulted before the changes occur.  In religious functions, turfs usually involve rites or procedures.  There is a “right way” and many “wrong ways” to do most anything.

Jesus invaded several turfs.  He did several things that simply should not be done.  He ran off buyers and sellers.  He overturned the tables of those who changed foreign currency into local currency.  He totally disrupted those who sold doves.  What a chaotic mess! 

All those people had permission to do what they did.  Jesus was the one without permission!

Adding to the confusion, Jesus healed the blind and lame.   Naturally, they, their families, and their friends were elated!  Worsening a chaotic situation, the youngest present shouted, “Hosanna to the son of David.”  Those in charge of the operations in the area found the whole happening personally insulting and highly inappropriate.  Jesus was a disruptive problem!

In desperation, those in charge asked Jesus, “Do you not hear what they are saying?”  (We probably would say, “How dare you let them say that!”)  Jesus said he heard.  He asked if they had not read about infants’ mouth and nursing babies praising God for His incredible deeds?  The least credible in their society saw God at work.

Suggestion for reflection: When do you see God at work?  (Read Psalm 8.)

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