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Note: bold type indicates updates made in 2013
The third week of Lent begins on Sunday, March 11th (Sunday, March 3 in 2013) The gospel reading of John 2: 12.25–and last week’s reading from Chapter 2 of Jesus of Nazareth by Joseph Ratzinger– both focus on Jesus Cleansing the Temple.
When Jesus arrives at the Temple, he passes through merchants and money changers. Jesus, riles against them, forcing them out of the Temple. The sacred Passover holiday is arriving, with people coming long distances to worship. While the merchants and money changers are licensed to operate, Jesus indignation is borne out of their disrespect for Divine law.
“Take all of this out of here and stop using my Father’s house as a market,” says Jesus. “What signs can you show us that you should act this way?” ask the Jews. Jesus replies. “Destroy this temple and in three days I will raise it up.” The Jews find this inconceivable, since it took them 46 years to build the Temple. (It is here that the political drama that leads to the Crucifixion begins in the temporal world: In the heavenly kingdom, it is the beginning of the sacrifice Jesus will make to save mankind from its errors. Reminder, in last week’s blog we presented passages that indicate that God is intellect, knowing all things that ever were and ever will be.)
Jesus often spoke in what seemed to be riddles but which are actually analogies. John tells us that while the conversation started out about the Temple, Jesus was foretelling a sign in which his physical body was the temple to be destroyed and he would rise up in three days. When he rose from the dead three days after the crucifixion, his disciples remembered and understood what he had said.
Click Here for Audio Imagery – The Cleansing in the Temple 1-3
Note: The three exercises in this group follow one another on the tape with just a brief interval between and should be done together. Read the Imagery Exercises first so you understand the process for changing an image.
Close your eyes and breathe out three times – See, feel, sense and know how it is to see Jesus rile against those who mix the things of God with the things of commerce. Breathe out one time and open your eyes.
Close your eyes and breathe out three times – See, feel sense and know how you may sometimes mix the things of God with the things of commerce. Remember your image, breathe out one time and open your eyes.
If your image is of you mixing the things of God with the things of commerce, close your eyes and breathe out three times – Recall the image and begin to change it by seeining your left hand sweeping it off your imagery screen to the upper left until it’s no longer visible. Breathe out one time and replace it with an image in which you honor the things of God, without the interference of commerce. Note your responses to these images. Breathe out one time and open your eyes.
A reminder: The Meditative Reading for next week is Chapter 3, The Washing of the Feet in Jesus of Nazareth: Holy Week, From the Entrance Into Jerusalem To The Resurrection by Joseph Ratzinger, Pope Benedict XVI.
May the reminders of Lent fill us with appreciation for the coming of Easter,