Jesus is a fierce, intentional man to be sure. But his passions are neither reckless nor momentary.

Could a small, unintimidating figure accomplish such a sustained riot? To pull off driving “all of them out of the temple” would require more than a few seconds and repeated blows. This is a sustained assault. If a frail man with a meek voice tried this, he’d be log-jammed by the sheer number and inertia of the traffic. Jesus is a locomotive, a juggernaut. For all practical purposes here, he is the bull in the china shop.

But is this the Jesus of our worship songs? The religious fog sneaks in to obscure Jesus with lines comparing him to, “a rose trampled on the ground.” Helpless, lovely Jesus. Vegetarian, pacifist, tranquil. Oh, wait—that was Gandhi. Not Jesus.

Can you picture Gandhi or Buddha storming into the polling place of a local election, shouting, overturning tables, sending the participants fleeing? Now throw a small carnival into the mix, which they also need to rout. Impossible. Whoever did this would have to be really committed to clear the building. Fierce and intentional.

This is a breathtaking quality—especially when compared to our present age where doubt masquerades as humility, passivity cloaks as rest, and emasculated indecision poses as laid-back enlightenment.

Oh, Jesus could be soft, and he certainly was humble, but his fierce intentionality is riveting to watch.

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