Cleaning the Temple: Mark 11: 12-19
The trouble with righteous anger is that it is so much easier to be angry than righteous. But it is possible to be both. This is session 5 of the Jesus’ Final Week series.
How would you define righteous anger? When have you seen it put to good use?
When has anger gotten the better of you lately? Ask God to help you discern the real cause of the anger.
Jesus well illustrates righteous anger in this passage. He also suggests that even righteous anger must be joined with prayer and forgiveness. This passage provides an example of how our emotions and attitudes can work toward God’s purposes instead of against them. Read Mark 11:12-19.
- How would you have felt if you had been a witness to the events of this passage?
- How do the events in this passage compare or contrast with the events of the previous study?
- What was Jesus trying to communicate when he cursed the fig tree (v. 14)?
- Put yourself in Jesus’ place. Why is he so angry about what is taking place in the temple (vv. 15-17)?
- In what ways would Jesus’ anger in this situation qualify as righteous anger?
- Compare and contrast the response of the chief priests and the teachers with that of the crowd (v. 18).
- What do you think is the reason for their different responses?
- What activities of Christians in the world today might arouse God’s anger?
- Now make it personal. What activities or attitudes in your church or fellowship get in the way of God’s purposes?
- What can you do to help eliminate them?
- When you react to a situation with anger, how can you know whether that anger is from God or not?
Confess any sins of anger that you may have become aware of. Ask
God to use you as a tool for his justice.
Now or Later
- Read Mark 11:20-25. Why do you suppose Mark has sandwiched this account of Jesus’ clearing of the temple within that
of the cursing of the fig tree?
- What kind of fruit was Jesus looking for in Israel?
- Many people believe they will escape the judgment of God simply because they are religious. How can this passage serve as a warning to them and to us?
- Are there people you are holding ungodly anger against? Begin to pray about this, and plan appropriate action steps as a Lenten discipline.