Jesus disclosed that the sacred is accessible apart from institutional mediation. In Jesus' social world, the official institutional mediator of the sacred was the temple in Jerusalem. Not only was the temple the place of God's presence but certain kinds of sins and impurities could be taken care of only through temple sacrifice. But Jesus (like his mentor John the Baptizer) affirmed the accessibility of God without temple mediation. He operated outside of institutional structures.

Marcus J. Borg, The God We Never Knew