Throwing over Tables: A Temper Tantrum?

Greg Laurie

We all have things that irritate us, and we display our anger in different ways. Yet research has proven that it is not good to be angry. One study found that bad-tempered people are three times more likely to have heart attacks. And a 2006 Harvard study revealed that 10 million men in the U.S. are so angry, they are sick. In fact, their disease has a name: Intermittent Explosive Disorder (IED).

Having said all that, not all anger is bad. The Bible records a time when Jesus Christ, God incarnate, was angry. Very angry. After making His triumphal entry into Jerusalem with crowds cheering and palm branches waving, Jesus "went into the temple and began to drive out those who bought and sold in it, saying to them, ‘It is written, "My house is a house of prayer," but you have made it a "den of thieves" ' " (Luke 19:45-46).

Was Jesus having a temper tantrum? Hardly. It was righteous indignation. He went into the temple. He took stock of the situation. And He overturned tables. Why such a display of anger? Because the people engaged in temple commerce were keeping others from God. They had a little racket going in which they found fault with the sacrificial animals the people brought in and then sold them an "approved" animal at an inflated price. And this made Jesus angry.

God is angry when people stand in the way of sinners coming to know Him. God doesn't like it when we get in the way, and it happens all too often in the church. But the church is not supposed to be a museum for saints; it is supposed to be a hospital for sinners—a place for people to know God.

Taken from "When Jesus Got Angry" by Harvest Ministries (used by permission).

Originally published September 01, 2010.

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