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Matthew 21 vs 12-22 - Matt Korniotes

Matthew 21:12-22

Matthew Chapter 21 Verses 12 – 13

  • I love this because not only did He overturn their tables but Matthew tells us that He also went after their seats. And you gotta get this scene because it is intense. Jesus walks into the temple and doesn’t immediately turn over the tables. The first thing He does is drive out all those who bought and sold in the temple. In a way, he clears out all of the work of man! (Side Note - What do we need more? Perfection in politics or purity in the house of God?)
  • Buying and selling is a reference to people selling elements of sacrifice and people buying so that they had something to sacrifice. Folks would come from all over…many making long trips during the time of the Passover and so they wouldn’t have brought with them a lamb, or doves or whatever but rather they would buy them from these temple merchants. Or, if they did bring their own, they would be inspected by the temple authorities and (of course) found to be unacceptable so they’d have to trade theirs in (and nobody gets what their cow is worth on a trade in! HA) or buy their high-priest pre-approved sacrifice.


  • The sellers would all be relatives of the high priest so their product would be pre-approved by the high priest and boy that would bring a price. And what’s more, they’d have to change their money…just like at a foreign exchange booth at the airport. Money from outside the temple wouldn’t work to buy these sacrifices so they would have to change their money into temple currency (at a fee of course)…and Jesus walks in, sees all of this, how it has overtaken the temple when the temple was to be about man finding God, not man and money…and He goes berserk…the word for “drove out” in the Greek denotes “with violence!” Correct interpretation…He went off!
  • Overturned their tables…the elements of distraction and then He goes after their seats and I just love that! Why? Because this is what He does, man! He not only does and will destroy the evil elements or acts but He also goes after the very position of evil! I HAVE to trust that…because I usually want to do that…my boiling blood wants to attack when unrighteous arises or someone does something and my flesh is just like, “What I ever do to you!” But man this is Jesus…this is what He does! If I can control myself and get out of His way…He’ll take care of it better than I ever couldeven if a little berserk is in order!!
  • This removal of distraction, subtraction of evil elements and even going after the very seat of that which makes it (whatever it is) cheap…(just like this marketplace in the Temple) this is His work in my heart, in my life, in my family, in my job, in my church…and so I just love this because I get all riled up and heart-hurt calmed in the same scene!

Matthew Chapter 21 Verse 14

  • And so check this out…I love this…when Jesus drives out those that have made the temple something it should not be…who are left? The blind and the lame, (and the children which we will see in a minute), and man there’s a message here…what are you here for today? Are you here to gain profit in some earthly way? Are you here to benefit yourself upon the expense of the people? Or are you simply blind and lame? I’ll tell you this…those are two descriptors that we don’t like too much when applied to ourselves…I am so arrogant and in love with myself that I think I’m brilliant! HA! That I see…and that I’m competent and able to handle it…whatever it is…
  • But the truth is, man, I’m blind…I don’t see as I ought to see and I’m here today so that God can open my eyes…I don’t suppose I already have attained…I already know…and so my heart is open, ready, pliable in the hands of God. Here’s the thing, and maybe you’re like me…I can’t accept for my eyes to stay shut! And the truth is that I’m not competent…who knows what is coming tomorrow or even this afternoon? How often my flesh lulls me into a sleep to forget but man by the spirit I snap into reality and sometimes it takes failure…I am completely dependent upon God! Drive out those that have made this thing about them…and all you’ll have left are folks that identify as blind and lame…searching for the Lord and seeking His healing!


  • Here’s the failure of the church…the failure of the temple put on display…the failure of fathers and mothers…sons and daughters…bosses and employees…while profit is happening left and right…money is being made and wealth is being gained…people go unhealed! Folks profiting themselves rather than profiting others. This enrages the Lord in this scene because you can’t get further form His heart…money flows but suffering remains…Is that what church has become? What you can get rather than what you can give to others? That is a sure recipe for having suffering remain…
  • But you simply come to Jesus…bring them to Jesus…give them Jesus…and healing happens…

Matthew Chapter 21 Verse 15

  • Look, just because folks don’t like what you’re doing, what you’re saying, how you’re serving…let me ask you…are people being healed by the Lord? Do the blind see? Do the lame walk? Are the children once again singing in their hearts to the Lord? Just because folks don’t like what you’re doing…and frankly sometimes, don’t like you…become indignant towards you…that does not mean that you ministry is not wonderful! What does God say on the matter?? THAT is the key and the voice of truth!

Matthew Chapter 21 Verses 16 – 19

  • (All of their studying…all of their serving…all of their robes and their prayers and their clubs and their events and their brilliance…and God proclaims perfect praise out of the children…amazes me…humbles me…)


  • This is a mysterious scene for sure because this is the first time we have ever seen Jesus use His power to bring this type of judgment…and there’s heavy symbology here that some theologians take to meaning Israel and such but it could just be that He’s hungrytired and weary of this fruitlessness that the world has become…It could be that these leaves remind Him of how He found Adam…covered up after sin and before confession…when His heart was broken in the Garden…at any rate, Jesus comes looking for fruit, finds none…and judgment follows…heavy symbology there for sure…

Matthew Chapter 20 – 22

  • Now this is an interesting statement by Jesus and some have taken this to the extreme (people like Vanilla Ice, HA!) and we have the “Positive Confession” movement…that if you just have faith, proclaim it and have no doubt then you can do anything, have anything…butI haven’t ever heard of anyone throwing a mountain into the sea…have you? That would be destructive anyway! Tidal waves and tsunami’s and junk…folks would get hurt! So what is Jesus saying…?
  • Well, here’s my take…and you’re welcome to yours. I tend to lean towards the simple and safe. Is it simple?…easy to find in scriptures without stretching the interpretation if you know what I mean…and is it safe?…does it align completely with the rest of the Word of God? So here’s my take…This statement made by Jesus is entirely true. HA!
  • You and I can do anything, with God…all things are possible when we trust Him and activate faith just like Noah did, just like Enoch did, just like Elisha did…when we walk with the Lord…but…faith does not work, does not exist in any way shape or form…outside of the will and word and heart of God…


  • You gotta know…God loves you…and God loves to bless! His desire is to give YOU the desires of your heart…Psalm 37:4…but if the desire of your heart is to get ripped off then He’s got some cleaning to do…tables and seats to overturn to get back to that child that you truly are underneath it all…so that you can sing again…simple, pure and free…then your heart will be flooded with joy and clarity and stillness and surity…and as the Psalmist writes, delight will enter…and whatever you ask, you’ll have because what you want will align with what He wants…and He wants you free. It’s just what He does, man…in the situation, in the place, in the circumstance…in your heart…