Romans 8:3-4 3 For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do.By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, 4 in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.
Jesus approaches the temple to worship and sees it has turned into a place of commerce. The people have somehow turned the whole system of sacrifice into a means for making money. They capitalize on the consumerist heart, the desire to somehow make things easier. They want sacrifice at a small cost, just so long as it doesn’t mean a sacrifice that demands their lives.
Ever want something so bad that you can’t wait to buy it? Maybe taking kids to a store and they so want something before they leave the store–something they absolutely don’t need–that they throw a little fit? Or perhaps make a purchase on a whim only to feel a sense of “buyer’s remorse” later? We are consumers and we want stuff. The caveat? We want it now and for nothing.
Hence, there is credit. And then debt. And then we are overwhelmed by it all. Our flesh gets temporarily satisfied but our desire for true fulfillment goes empty. The staggering interest that is incurred is beyond what we can make any kind of payment on. We cannot meet the requirement; we cannot fulfill that for which we yearn. The cost is simply too much.
There is a weakening of the flesh here. It is distinct, in that people yearn to fulfill the law but without righteousness. We are often caught in the same manner, looking for righteousness with having sacrificed anything for the sake of the Kingdom. Rather than turning to prayer and repentance, we can get caught up in turning presence with God into presents for God. Mark 11:15-17 tells us just how Jesus felt about the house of His Father. He desires to do the same kind of cleansing in our lives.