As Passover approaches, Jews who've traveled from many lands swarm the temple courtyard, which resembles a bazaar or an auction barnyard more than a place of worship. Shifty-eyed moneychangers convert foreign coin to the local currency, pocketing heavy fees and cheating at every opportunity. Merchants sell olive oil, vinegar and wine, as well as the customary sacrificial animals. The Jews bicker and haggle, and greed hangs in the air like smog over Los Angeles.
Jesus strides into the temple in slow motion, bathed in a white light and flanked by his 12 disciples, six on each side. He stops before a row of merchants selling pigeons. The crowd goes silent.
[In Aramaic] You have turned my house into a den of thieves! Get out!
No one moves. Jesus pulls a whip from his belt, and lets out a war yelp-
-as he and the disciples charge the pigeon peddlers. Jesus leaps up on a table and strikes one of the Jews hard, knocking him back out of his chair at least 10 feet. A flurry of pigeons flies up toward heaven.
Another Jew jumps up on the tables and runs toward Jesus from behind. He dives at the Christ, who ducks just in time. The Jew sails headfirst into a stone pillar, cracking open his skull and splattering blood and bone fragments everywhere.
Jesus flays every merchant in reach, lacerating faces and exposed arms. The disciples kick ass: John smashes a jug of olives over a temple scribe's head; Philip holds a sheep salesman's arms from behind while Bartholomew pummels him in the stomach; Peter chases an ox trader around one of the beasts of the field, circling the ox one way, then the other. Finally, Peter leaps over the animal, tackling the man to the ground.
Now let us get the moneychangers!
Jesus clutches a long curtain and climbs up the side of the temple. He leaps, swinging across the courtyard like Tarzan and striking a moneychanger sandal-first in the cheek. The moneychangers's head snaps back in slow motion, blood flying from the side of his mouth.
Matthew gets one of the Jews in a headlock.
Repent, sinner, or be damned! Your profession is an abomination to the Lord!
[Gasping] You. know.nothing of my trade.
No? I used to be a tax collector. Now repent!
Matthew snaps the man's neck like a communion wafer.
One by one, Jesus kicks over the moneychangers' tables. Buckets of coins explode in the air and shower, slow motion, to earth. Some moneychangers run for their lives, while others dive to scavenge for change. Judas Iscariot, making sure Jesus and the disciples aren't watching, joins his real brethren on the ground in the grab for silver.
A temple priest swings at Jesus with a sacrificial knife. Jesus catches the priest's wrist, and knocks the knife away. Then Jesus leaps in the air, spins 360 degrees and delivers a devastating round house kick to the priest's head. The priest falls onto his upturned knife. At least a quart of blood pools on the floor.
As most of the remaining uninjured Jews flee the temple, Jesus raises his arms triumphantly and scans the temple courtyard.
The real temple of the Lord is my body! Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up!
In a dark corner, a hooked nose appears from behind the wall. The face emerges partially from the shadows. It is the high priest, Caiaphas, his eyes dark circles of evil.
[Whispering to himself] Oh, I will destroy you Jesus. As sure as you are not the true Messiah, I will destroy you...