That Time When Jesus Started A Riot

This is the Christ I follow: Jesus as revolutionary and organizer of a movement.

The Reboot

The murder of young Michael Brown has grieved and enraged an entire community. Many of them took to the streets in response. Peaceful prayer vigils and protests were met with armed policemen, tanks, and tear gas. Riots began to break out. The response has only gotten worse.

As Christians, we are often urged to denounce such demonstrations. This is due to Jesus’ admonition to “turn the other cheek.” Jesus is presented as meek and mild, friendly and full of compassion. And while this is not inaccurate, a vital Gospel account brings this notion concerning Jesus into question. Near the end of his life, Jesus enters into the sacred Temple in Jerusalem.[1] He proceeds to chase people out, block anyone else from bringing anything else into the temple, and flipped over the moneychangers’[2] tables. According to the Gospel accounts, Jesus cites scripture to explain his actions. He declares that…

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