What Were the Moneychangers at the Temple Changing Money for?

Discussion about the New Testament, apocrypha, gnostics, church fathers, Christian origins, historical Jesus or otherwise, etc.
User avatar
Secret Alias
Posts: 13347
Joined: Sun Apr 19, 2015 8:47 am

What Were the Moneychangers at the Temple Changing Money for?

Post by Secret Alias » Tue Sep 08, 2020 7:46 am

If we want to get on the train having a booth to get change makes sense. What were the money changers changing money for at the temple? The redemption tax? Half shekel?
“Finally, from so little sleeping and so much reading, his brain dried up and he went completely out of his mind.”
― Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, Don Quixote

User avatar
Ben C. Smith
Posts: 8615
Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2015 2:18 pm
Location: USA
Contact:

Re: What Were the Moneychangers at the Temple Changing Money for?

Post by Ben C. Smith » Tue Sep 08, 2020 8:03 am

Secret Alias wrote:
Tue Sep 08, 2020 7:46 am
If we want to get on the train having a booth to get change makes sense. What were the money changers changing money for at the temple? The redemption tax? Half shekel?
The explanation I have seen is that coins with images on them (mainly Greek and Roman) were proscribed by the Law; therefore, moneychangers traded them for coins without images, which could be used to buy the sacrificial animals. I have never looked into this myself, however; this is just the explanation I have seen floating around.
ΤΙ ΕΣΤΙΝ ΑΛΗΘΕΙΑ

User avatar
Secret Alias
Posts: 13347
Joined: Sun Apr 19, 2015 8:47 am

Re: What Were the Moneychangers at the Temple Changing Money for?

Post by Secret Alias » Tue Sep 08, 2020 8:04 am

Interesting. What is the evidence for that proposition?
“Finally, from so little sleeping and so much reading, his brain dried up and he went completely out of his mind.”
― Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, Don Quixote

User avatar
Secret Alias
Posts: 13347
Joined: Sun Apr 19, 2015 8:47 am

Re: What Were the Moneychangers at the Temple Changing Money for?

Post by Secret Alias » Tue Sep 08, 2020 8:05 am

What would the changed money have been used for?
“Finally, from so little sleeping and so much reading, his brain dried up and he went completely out of his mind.”
― Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, Don Quixote

User avatar
Ben C. Smith
Posts: 8615
Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2015 2:18 pm
Location: USA
Contact:

Re: What Were the Moneychangers at the Temple Changing Money for?

Post by Ben C. Smith » Tue Sep 08, 2020 8:10 am

Secret Alias wrote:
Tue Sep 08, 2020 8:04 am
Interesting. What is the evidence for that proposition?
Not sure. Come to think of it, I believe I have seen something about the coins needing to be pure silver or gold or something like that, as well.
ΤΙ ΕΣΤΙΝ ΑΛΗΘΕΙΑ

User avatar
Ben C. Smith
Posts: 8615
Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2015 2:18 pm
Location: USA
Contact:

Re: What Were the Moneychangers at the Temple Changing Money for?

Post by Ben C. Smith » Tue Sep 08, 2020 8:20 am

Ben C. Smith wrote:
Tue Sep 08, 2020 8:10 am
Secret Alias wrote:
Tue Sep 08, 2020 8:04 am
Interesting. What is the evidence for that proposition?
Not sure. Come to think of it, I believe I have seen something about the coins needing to be pure silver or gold or something like that, as well.
Okay, this page: https://biblearchaeology.org/research/d ... -jerusalem, actually says that the Temple authorities tolerated an image of Melqart on the permissible coinage in order to get the proportion of silver right. It cites David Hendin as its authority for this statement, but I do not have access to his Guide at the moment.
ΤΙ ΕΣΤΙΝ ΑΛΗΘΕΙΑ

perseusomega9
Posts: 819
Joined: Tue Feb 04, 2014 7:19 am
Contact:

Re: What Were the Moneychangers at the Temple Changing Money for?

Post by perseusomega9 » Tue Sep 08, 2020 9:20 am

Secret Alias wrote:
Tue Sep 08, 2020 8:05 am
What would the changed money have been used for?
to purchase a privy for the high priest
The metric to judge if one is a good exegete: the way he/she deals with Barabbas.

Who disagrees with me on this precise point is by definition an idiot.
-Giuseppe

User avatar
Ben C. Smith
Posts: 8615
Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2015 2:18 pm
Location: USA
Contact:

Re: What Were the Moneychangers at the Temple Changing Money for?

Post by Ben C. Smith » Tue Sep 08, 2020 10:16 am

perseusomega9 wrote:
Tue Sep 08, 2020 9:20 am
Secret Alias wrote:
Tue Sep 08, 2020 8:05 am
What would the changed money have been used for?
to purchase a privy for the high priest
Yeshu the Notsri may agree with you:

Babylonian Talmud, Avodah Zarah 16b-17a: 16b .... Our Rabbis taught, “When R. Eliezer was arrested because of heresy, they brought him up to the tribune to be judged. Said the governor to him, ‘How can a sage man like you occupy himself with those idle things?’ He replied, ‘I acknowledge the Judge as right.’ The governor thought that he referred to him, though he really referred to his Father in Heaven, and he said, ‘Because you have acknowledged me as right, I pardon; you are acquitted.’ When he came home, his disciples called on him to console him, but he would accept no consolation. Said R. Akiba to him, ‘Master, will you permit me to say one thing of what you have taught me?’ He replied, ‘Say it.’ ‘Master,’ said he, ‘perhaps some of the teaching of the heretics had been transmitted to you 17a and you approved of it and because of that you were arrested.’ He exclaimed: ‘Akiba, you have reminded me. I was once walking in the upper market of Sepphoris when I came across one [+ of the disciples of Yeshu the Notsri], Jacob of Kefar Sekaniah [יעקוב איש כפר סכניא] by name, who said to me, “It is written in your Torah, ‘You shall not bring the hire of a harlot into the house of the Lord your God’ (= Deuteronomy 23.19). May such money be applied to the making of a privy for the High Priest?” To which I made no reply. Said he to me, “He [+ ישו הנוצרי, Yeshu the Notsri] taught me, ‘For of the hire of a harlot has she gathered them, and unto the hire of a harlot shall they return.’ They came from a place of filth; let them go to a place of filth.” Those words pleased me very much, and that is why I was arrested for apostacy; for thereby I transgressed the scriptural words, “Remove your way far from her” — which refers to heresy — “and come not nigh to the door of her house” — which refers to the ruling power (= Proverbs 5.8).’” ....

ΤΙ ΕΣΤΙΝ ΑΛΗΘΕΙΑ

perseusomega9
Posts: 819
Joined: Tue Feb 04, 2014 7:19 am
Contact:

Re: What Were the Moneychangers at the Temple Changing Money for?

Post by perseusomega9 » Tue Sep 08, 2020 11:31 am

I know, I'm rereading Eisenmann. I figured someone here would catch the reference, you get bonus points.
The metric to judge if one is a good exegete: the way he/she deals with Barabbas.

Who disagrees with me on this precise point is by definition an idiot.
-Giuseppe

User avatar
Ben C. Smith
Posts: 8615
Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2015 2:18 pm
Location: USA
Contact:

Re: What Were the Moneychangers at the Temple Changing Money for?

Post by Ben C. Smith » Tue Sep 08, 2020 12:02 pm

perseusomega9 wrote:
Tue Sep 08, 2020 11:31 am
I know, I'm rereading Eisenmann. I figured someone here would catch the reference, you get bonus points.
Ah, I see. :D The image did sound awfully specific.

ETA: First rate reference, by the way. I am not used to that degree of subtlety on this board. Usually I feel like someone is trying to beat me to death with Richard Carrier's thigh bone.
ΤΙ ΕΣΤΙΝ ΑΛΗΘΕΙΑ

Post Reply