Give more to those who have a lot (Lk 8:18-8:18)

“Pay attention!

To how you listen!

Those who have more,

More will be given!

From those who have not,

Even what they seem to have

Will be taken away.”

 

βλέπετε οὖν πῶς ἀκούετε· ὃς ἂν γὰρ ἔχῃ, δοθήσεται αὐτῷ, καὶ ὃς ἂν μὴ ἔχῃ, καὶ ὃ δοκεῖ ἔχειν ἀρθήσεται ἀπ’ αὐτοῦ.

 

Luke indicated that Jesus said that they should pay attention on how they listen or hear things (βλέπετε οὖν πῶς ἀκούετε).  Those who have things (ὃς ἂν γὰρ ἔχῃ), more will be given (δοθήσεται αὐτῷ).  From those who do not have things (καὶ ὃς ἂν μὴ ἔχῃ), even what they appear or seem to have (καὶ ὃ δοκεῖ ἔχειν) will be taken away from them (ἀρθήσεται ἀπ’ αὐτοῦ).  All 3 synoptic gospels, Matthew, chapter 13:12, Mark, chapter 4:25, and here, have this quirky saying, almost word for word.  Mark said that to those who had knowledge, more would be given to them.  However, those who had nothing, even what little they had would be taken away.  Matthew indicated that those who had more knowledge, even more abundant knowledge would be given to them.  However, those who had nothing, even what little they had would be taken away.  There would be no center ambiguous positions, it was all or nothing.  What more do you want?

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How do you give gifts? (Mk 4:24-4:24)

“Jesus said to them.

‘Pay attention

To what you hear!

The measure you give

Will be the measure

You get.

Still more

Will be given you.”

 

Καὶ ἔλεγεν αὐτοῖς Βλέπετε τί ἀκούετε. ἐν ᾧ μέτρῳ μετρεῖτε μετρηθήσεται ὑμῖν, καὶ προστεθήσεται ὑμῖν.

 

Mark indicated that Jesus said to his disciples (Καὶ ἔλεγεν αὐτοῖς) that they should pay attention, perceive, and discern whatever they hear (Βλέπετε τί ἀκούετε).  Whatever they used as a measuring rod (ἐν ᾧ μέτρῳ μετρεῖτε), it would be the same measuring stick used on them (μετρηθήσεται ὑμῖν).  This last phrase is exactly the same as in Luke, chapter 6:38, which was also like Matthew, chapter 7:2, who was talking about judging others, so that they would not be judged.  Whatever judgment they made they would be judged the same way.  Finally, Jesus said that more would be added to them (καὶ προστεθήσεται ὑμῖν).

Useless work (Hag 1:9-1:9)

“‘You have looked

For much,

But it came to little.

When you brought it home,

I blew it away.

Why?’

Says Yahweh of hosts.

‘Because my house

Lies in ruins,

While all of you

Hurry off

To your own houses’”

They had looked for many things, but they could only find a few little things.  When they finally brought them home, Yahweh blew them away.  Even though Yahweh’s house was in ruins, they hurried off to build their own homes.  Yahweh wanted them to pay more attention to the house of Yahweh.

Prepare to meet God (Am 4:12-4:12)

“Therefore thus,

I will do to you!

O Israel!

I will do this

To you!

Prepare to meet

Your God!

O Israel!”

Amos has Yahweh issue one last solemn warning. Yahweh has tried many things to get the attention of these northern Israelites. However, he finally told them that they would meet the judgment of God himself. They had to prepare for their own death.

The ironsmith makes an idol (Isa 44:12-44:12)

“The ironsmith fashions it.

He works it over the coals.

He shapes it with hammers.

He forges it with his strong arm.

He becomes hungry.

His strength fails.

He drinks no water.

He is faint.”

Second Isaiah calls out the ironsmith for special attention. He has to work hard to produce this idol. He uses coal, hammers, and a strong arm. However, this blacksmith gets hungry and thirsty, so that his strength fails and he faints.

The servant in prison (Isa 42:22-42:25)

“But this is a people robbed.

This is a people plundered.

All of them are trapped in holes.

They are hidden in prisons.

They have become a prey,

With no one to rescue them.

They have become a spoil,

With none to say.

‘Restore!’

Who among you will give heed to this?

Who will attend for the time to come?

Who will listen for the time to come?

Who gave up Jacob to the spoiler?

Who gave up Israel to the robbers?

Was it not Yahweh?

They have sinned against him.

They would not walk in his ways.

They would not obey his law.

So he poured upon him

The heat of his anger.

He poured upon him

The fury of war.

It set him on fire all around.

But he did not understand.

It burned him.

But he did not take it to heart.”

In this section of Second Isaiah, it talks about the people and the individual servant together. The Israelite servants were robbed and plundered, and then put into prison holes. No one would rescue them as they were prey and a spoil to others. No one wanted to restore them to their former ways. No one paid attention. Yahweh made Jacob or Israel fall to these robbers and spoilers. This happened because they had sinned against Yahweh. They would not walk in his ways or follow his laws. Thus Yahweh poured out his heat and anger on his servant with the fury of a war. He set his servant on fire, but he still does not understand what was happening. He got burned, but he did not take it to heart.

Stay away from these consultants (Sir 37:10-37:11)

“Do not consult anyone

Who regards you with suspicion!

Hide your intentions

From those who are jealous of you!

Do not consult with

A woman about her rival!

Do not consult with

A coward about war!

Do not consult with

A merchant about business!

Do not consult with

A buyer about selling!

Do not consult with

A miser about generosity!

Do not consult with

A merciless person about kindness!

Do not consult with

An idler about any work!

Do not consult with

A seasonal laborer about completing his work!

Do not consult with

A lazy servant about a big task!

Pay no attention

To any advice they give!”

Now Sirach is specific about whom you should avoid as counselors. Avoid anyone who is suspicious or jealous of you. Don’t consult with a woman about her rivals, a coward about war, a merchant or a buyer about business selling, a miser about generosity, a merciless person about kindness, an idler, seasonal laborers, or lazy servants about completing big work tasks. Pay no attention to any of these people and their advice.