The kingdoms of the world (Lk 4:5-4:5)

“Then the devil

Led Jesus up.

He showed him,

In an instant,

All the kingdoms

Of the world.”

 

Καὶ ἀναγαγὼν αὐτὸν ἔδειξεν αὐτῷ πάσας τὰς βασιλείας τῆς οἰκουμένης ἐν στιγμῇ χρόνου.

 

This is the 3rd and final temptation in Matthew, chapter 4:8-10, but here in Luke it is the 2nd temptation.  The wording is almost the same, indicating a shared common source, perhaps Q.  Luke said that the devil led Jesus up (Καὶ ἀναγαγὼν αὐτὸν), presumably a high mountain, as in some Orthodox manuscripts and in Matthew.  He then showed him (ἔδειξεν αὐτῷ) in an instant or moment in time (ἐν στιγμῇ χρόνου), all the kingdoms of the world (πάσας τὰς βασιλείας τῆς οἰκουμένης).  Exactly how he did this is difficult to discern.  This time, the devil took Jesus to an exceeding high mountain, where he showed Jesus all the great kingdoms of the world.  Luke was more restrained in his description of the various kingdoms, since he did not mention their splendor and glory, the way that Matthew had.

The third temptation (Mt 4:8-4:9)

“Again,

The devil took Jesus

To a very high mountain.

He showed him

All the kingdoms

Of the world

With all their splendor.

He said to him.

‘All these,

I will give you,

If you will fall down,

And worship me.’”

 

Πάλιν παραλαμβάνει αὐτὸν ὁ διάβολος εἰς ὄρος ὑψηλὸν λίαν, καὶ δείκνυσιν αὐτῷ πάσας τὰς βασιλείας τοῦ κόσμου καὶ τὴν δόξαν αὐτῶν,

καὶ εἶπεν αὐτῷ Ταῦτά σοι πάντα δώσω, ἐὰν πεσὼν προσκυνήσῃς μοι.

 

This 3rd and final temptation was the 2nd temptation in Luke, chapter 4:5-8. The wording is the same, indicating a shared common source, perhaps Q. This time, the devil took Jesus to an exceeding high mountain (Πάλιν παραλαμβάνει αὐτὸν ὁ διάβολος εἰς ὄρος ὑψηλὸν λίαν). He then showed him all the great kingdoms of the world with all their splendor and glory (καὶ δείκνυσιν αὐτῷ πάσας τὰς βασιλείας τοῦ κόσμου καὶ τὴν δόξαν αὐτῶν). Then he asked Jesus to worship him. If Jesus fell down and worshipped him (ἐὰν πεσὼν προσκυνήσῃς μοι), the devil would then give all these kingdoms with their glory to him (καὶ εἶπεν αὐτῷ Ταῦτά σοι πάντα δώσω). Somehow this devil thought that he was in control of all the nations in the world. Perhaps the early followers of Jesus thought that the world outside Jerusalem was under the power of the devil. For many Christians, this seemed like a stupid temptation since God, the Father and his Son, already controlled the world.