Many songs have been written about money, but why does it seem as if the rich get richer and the poor get poorer?
In the chapter entitled The Moneychangers, I deal with the reasons for which Jesus went into the temple, beat the moneychangers and overturned tables. Twice in the New Testament we see the Lord enacting his wrath.
Although the Lord insulted Scribes and Pharisees, there is no documented evidence in the New Testament that he resorted to violence in dealing with them.
Have you ever considered why this is the case and what got him so angry?
“If thou lend money to any of my people that is poor by thee, thou shalt not be to him as an usurer, neither shalt thou lay upon him usury.”
Exodus 22:25 KJV
“Usury is an old English word that has been replaced with a cute modern English word called interest.
The Hebrew word for usury is “nashak” which means to strike with a sting, or to oppress by use of interest or a loan.
We can see immediately from the Hebrew language that this speaks of a form of monetary weapon.
In Latin, it comes from the word “interess” which is a legal term for usury approved and made lawful by a government. I will, in the course of this chapter, use the word “usury” interchangeably with interest.
The moneychangers and merchants crept into God’s temple, they assumed the responsibility of exchanging Roman coins for the required half shekel of silver the worshippers required to meet the biblical requirements of a temple tax.
These half shekel silver coins were in short supply, making worshippers easy prey for profit. Money changing was like any forex bureau today, which charges a fee for exchanging the currencies of different countries; however, the fees in the era of Jesus had become absurd.
Merchants inflated the prices of sacrificial animals to bloat profits, making it difficult for the low-income person to afford to bring God the sacrifice of a turtle dove.
Wasn’t it their jobs to profit; surely God should understand? How else could the merchants and money changers make a living?
God did understand. He understood the ferocious lust in their hearts as they stole in the name of the Lord. They exacted larger and larger sums to enrich themselves in the midst of a people desperate to please God.
It is terrible to blockade worship through tariffs and gorge on the pain, blood, sweat, and tears of those God loves.