Monday Of Passion Week – Mark 11:12-19 – The Cursing Of The Fig Tree, The Cleansing Of The Temple, And The Beginning Of Passover

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For Your Name Is Holy

Lesson Video

Jesus Chases The Money Changers Out of The Temple

The passion week/holy week continues with the activities of Monday. Taking place on this day are The Cursing Of The Fig Tree, The Cleansing Of The Temple, and The Beginning Of Passover.

Lesson Series: Passover

Monday Of Passion Week

Considerations. 1. It is Monday, and was the first meal of the day. Jesus and the disciples were hungry. They noticed that no figs were on the tree. (The fig tree had long been a symbol of Israel’s peace and security, Micah 4:4, Zechariah 3:10) Normally, the fruit and leaves appear at the same time. The curse on the tree is an illustration of the rejection of Israel, by Jesus. Israel was a nation that was unfruitful despite its every advantage to be fruitful. The curse meant that Israel would not again be the primary instrument of accomplishing God’s purpose.

Verses Of Consideration

Leviticus 23:4-6 (Passover And Feast Of Unleavened Bread)

4 ‘These are the appointed times of the Lord, holy convocations which you shall proclaim at the times appointed for them. 5 In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month at twilight is the Lord’s Passover. 6 Then on the fifteenth day of the same month there is the Feast of Unleavened Bread to the Lord; for seven days you shall eat unleavened bread.

Exodus 12:1-14 (Passover 1 Day) (Sunset, April 10 – Sunset April 11, 2017)

Exodus 12:15-20 (Feast Of Unleavened Bread – 7 Days) (Sunset, April 11 – Sunset, April 18, 2017)

Numbers 28:16 (Passover); Numbers 28:17 (Feast Of Unleavened Bread)

Deuteronomy 16:1-8 (Passover And Feast Of Unleavened Bread)

Text

Mark 11:12-19

The Cursing Of The Fig Tree

12 Now the next day, when they had come out from Bethany, He was hungry. 13 And seeing from afar a fig tree having leaves, He went to see if perhaps He would find something on it. When He came to it, He found nothing but leaves, for it was not the season for figs. 14 In response Jesus said to it, “Let no one eat fruit from you ever again.” And His disciples heard it.

Jesus Cleanses the Temple

15 So they came to Jerusalem. Then Jesus went into the temple and began to drive out those who bought and sold in the temple, and overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who sold doves. 16 And He would not allow anyone to carry wares through the temple. 17 Then He taught, saying to them, “Is it not written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer for all nations’? But you have made it a ‘den of thieves.’ ”
18 And the scribes and chief priests heard it and sought how they might destroy Him; for they feared Him, because all the people were astonished at His teaching. 19 When evening had come, He went out of the city.

Considerations. 2. The money changers provided a necessary service. The temple tax and offerings were required to be paid in the local currency. However, the process had become so very corrupt that Jesus spoke of the setting as being a den of robbers. Not only had the court become a market, it was being used as a shortcut by merchants of all kinds. Mark sees in the gestures of Jesus a defense of Gentile rights and maybe an indication of the future mission that would be given to the Gentiles. (My house will be called a house of prayer for all nations). We might ask ourselves about our own places of worship. Do we have the appearance that our “temple” is anything less than a place of worship? Do we allow less than holy activities to take place, such as weddings that have no resemblances to the name of Jesus Christ, whether it is inside of the sanctuary, in the fellowship hall, or even in the outside yard? Do we allow drunken receptions to take place, almost immediately after the married couple has dedicated their marriage to God. Do we allow vulgar placards to be placed on vehicles that will be driven by the bride and groom? I’m sure that this list can be lengthened “to no end.”

Considerations 3. This is the second incident of Jesus clearing the temple. See John 2:12-25 for the first occurrence.

Passover

This Monday evening, beginning at sunset, is the beginning of Passover. It will last for twenty-four hours. The Feast Of Unleavened Bread will immediately follow Passover and will last for seven days. Often times, the complete duration is called “Passover.” The following verses explain this Holy season of the Jews. The purpose of Passover and The Feast Of Unleavened Bread was to celebrate God’s deliverance of Israel from Slavery in Egypt. The fulfillment of these feasts in Christ can be found in 1 Corinthians 5:7 (Passover: The Death Of Christ); and in 1 Corinthians 5:8 (Unleavened Bread: Sinlessness of Christ). The total law was fulfilled in Christ, Matthew 5:17.

Notes

The following study notes come from the MacArthur Study Bible, and are provided by Biblgateway.com

Mark

11:12 the next day. Matt 21:18 says this was “in the morning,” probably before 6:00 am. Bethany. See note on v. 1
11:13 fig tree having leaves. Fig trees were common as a source of food. Three years were required from planting until fruit bearing. After that, a tree could be harvested twice a year, usually yielding much fruit. The figs normally grew with the leaves. This tree had leaves but, strangely, no fruit. That this tree was along the side of the road (cf. Matt. 21:19), implies it was public property. It was also apparently in good soil because its foliage was ahead of season and ahead of the surrounding fig trees. The abundance of leaves held out promise that the tree might also be ahead of schedule with its fruit. not the season for figs. The next normal fig season was in June, more than a month away. This phrase, unique to Mark, emphasizes the unusual nature of this fig tree.
11:14 “Let no one eat fruit from you ever again.” Jesus’ direct address to the tree personified it and condemned it for not providing what its appearance promised. This incident was not the acting out of the parable of the fig tree (Luke 13:6–9), which was a warning against spiritual fruitlessness. Here, Jesus cursed the tree for its misleading appearance that suggested great productivity without providing it. It should have been full of fruit, but was barren. The fig tree was frequently an OT type of the Jewish nation (Hos. 9:10; Nah. 3:12; Zech. 3:10), and in this instance Jesus used the tree by the road as a divine object lesson concerning Israel’s spiritual hypocrisy and fruitlessness (see note on Matt. 21:19; cf. Is. 5:1–7).
11:15–19 See note on Matt. 21:12. Although Jesus had cleansed the temple 3 years earlier (John 2:14–16), it had become more corrupt and profane than ever and thus He was compelled to again offer clear testimony to God’s holiness and to His judgment against spiritual desecration and false religion. Even as God sent His prophets repeatedly throughout the OT to warn His people of their sin and idolatry, Christ never stopped declaring God’s will to a rebellious people, no matter how often they rejected it. With this temple cleansing, Jesus showed vividly that He was on a divine mission as the Son of God.
11:15 temple. See note on v. 11. The large Court of the Gentiles was the setting for the events that followed. bought and sold. Animals were needed by the Jews for their sacrificial temple offerings, and it was more convenient for the worshipers to buy them there rather than bring the animals from a distance and risk that they would not pass the High-Priest’s inspection. The sellers either belonged to the High-Priestly hierarchy or paid a large fee to temple authorities for the privilege of selling. Whichever was the case, the High-Priest’s family benefited monetarily. money changers. They were in the court to exchange Greek and Roman coins for Jewish or Tyrian coins which pilgrims (every Jewish male 20 and older) had to use for the annual half-shekel payment for temple religious services (see note on Matt. 21:12). A fee as high as 10 or 12 percent was assessed for this exchange service. those who sold doves. These birds were so often used for sacrifice that Mark makes separate mention of their sellers. Doves were the normal offering of the poor (Lev. 5:7) and were also required for other purposes (Lev. 12:6; 14:22; 15:14, 29).
11:16 not allow anyone to carry wares. Jesus did not want people to continue the practice of using the court as a shortcut through which to carry utensils and containers with merchandise to other parts of Jerusalem because such a practice revealed great irreverence for the temple—and ultimately for God Himself.
11:17 Jesus defended Himself by appealing to Scripture (see note on Matt. 21:13) after His actions had caused a crowd to gather. a house of prayer for all nations. The true purpose for God’s temple. Only Mark includes “for all nations” from Isaiah’s text (56:7), probably because he was mainly addressing Gentiles. The Court of the Gentiles was the only part of the temple they were permitted to use for prayer and worship of God, and the Jews had frustrated that worship by turning it into a place of greedy business. a ‘den of thieves.’ Using Jeremiah’s phrase (Jer. 7:11), Jesus described the religious leaders as robbers who found refuge in the temple, comparable to how highwaymen took refuge in caves with other robbers. The temple had become a place where God’s people, instead of being able to worship undisturbed, were extorted and their extortioners were protected.
11:18 scribes and chief priests. Here Mark uses this combination for the first time. These men were among those who comprised the principal leadership in the Sanhedrin (see notes on Matt. 2:4; 26:59). sought how they might destroy Him. See note on 3:6. The leaders had continuing discussions on how to kill Jesus. astonished at His teaching. See note on 1:22.
11:19 went out of the city. Jesus’ practice during the first 3 days of Passion Week was not to leave Jerusalem until sunset, when the crowds dispersed and the city gates were about to be closed.

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The scripture text was taken from Biblegateway.com

The translation of the text is from The New King James Version.

Unless otherwise noted, scripture notes were taken from The MacArthur Study Bible notes that are contained in Biblegateway.com

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