• Read: Mark 11:12-33
There are two great tests in this passage. First, Jesus tested the religion in the temple to see whether it was authentic worship of God. And then the leaders of that religion tested Jesus, to see if he was genuinely acting with God’s authority.
The test for the temple was like the test for the fig tree. Was it really producing the results for which God established it? A fig tree should produce fruit - otherwise, it is worthless. And God wanted the temple to be a place of prayer. But Jesus found that it had become a mere device that wealthy people used to extract money from the poor. It was not benefiting the nations - it was a burden to them.
Afterwards, those priests who ran the temple challenged Jesus: ‘What right have you to do such things?’ Jesus’ action had the same purpose as John’s baptism: to give people an opportunity to repent and turn to God. So Jesus asked the priests to explain who gave John the authority to give that message.
The priests were unwilling to say that God sent John. They were not ready to admit that either John’s ministry or Jesus’ ministry was authentic.
Read at Bible Gateway: Mark 11:12-33 KJV / NIV / ESV / Good News
Read at Blue Letter Bible: Mark 11:12-33 KJV / NIV / ESV
Next part: Debate - Day 26 - Mark 12:1-27
From the series: Understanding Mark's Gospel
© 2019 K Simons