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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The eighth beatitude on persecution (Mt 5:10-5:10)

“Blessed are

Those who are persecuted

For righteousness’ sake,

Theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”

 

μακάριοι οἱ δεδιωγμένοι ἕνεκεν δικαιοσύνης, ὅτι αὐτῶν ἐστιν ἡ βασιλεία τῶν οὐρανῶν.

 

The happy, blessed, and fortunate ones (μακάριοι) would be those who were being persecuted for the sake of righteousness (οἱ δεδιωγμένοι ἕνεκεν δικαιοσύνης). The followers of Jesus would be persecuted. The reward for these righteous ones would be the kingdom of heaven (ὅτι αὐτῶν ἐστιν ἡ βασιλεία τῶν οὐρανῶν). After each blessed action, there was a reward. Righteousness, like in the Old Testament, was a key characteristic for those who would enter the kingdom of heaven. Acting right, following the law, was at the center or the heart of being a just or righteous person.

The sixth beatitude on pure of heart (Mt 5:8-5:8)

“Blessed are

The pure in heart!

They will see God.”

 

μακάριοι οἱ καθαροὶ τῇ καρδίᾳ, ὅτι αὐτοὶ τὸν Θεὸν ὄψονται.

 

The happy, blessed, and fortunate ones (μακάριοι) would be those who have a pure heart (οἱ καθαροὶ τῇ καρδίᾳ).  Their reward would be that they would see or behold God (ὅτι αὐτοὶ τὸν Θεὸν ὄψονται).  The heart was considered the center of thought and will.  Thus, we often hear people today who say that a person has a good heart.  They are good hearted.  The heart represents the whole person, so if the heart is pure, the whole person was pure.  Only the pure in heart would see God, which was a special reward.  In Psalm 24:3-4, they wanted to know who could ascend the hill to enter the holy place of Yahweh’s Temple.  Only those who had clean hands and a pure heart could enter the holy place, since they could not have a false or deceptive heart.  Then, they would receive the blessing from Yahweh.  They were the ones who would see the face of the God of Jacob.

Judaism as the root of Christianity

A rough comparison of Judaism and Christianity might be like the relationship of the eastern religions of Hinduism and Buddhism.  Judaism would be like Hinduism and Christianity would be like Buddhism.  Both religions, Buddhism and Christianity rely on an already established religious base, Judaism and Hinduism, and emphasis the role of a single person, Buddha and Jesus.  Both Christianity and Judaism have the same base.  The center of the Old Testament covenant was Yahweh and his people, while the heart of the Christian message was around Jesus of Nazareth, the Christ, who was Jewish.

The angel of the Lord and the useless fire (Dan 3:26-3:27)

“But the angel

Of the Lord

Came down

Into the furnace

To be with Azariah,

As well as his companions.

He drove the fiery flame

Out of the furnace.

He made the inside

Of the furnace

Like a moist wind,

That went whistling

Through it.

The fire did not touch

Them at all.

It caused them

No pain,

No distress.”

The angel of the Lord came down into the furnace to be with Azariah and his 2 companions. This angel made the inside of the furnace like a moist wind whistling through the center of the furnace. This drove the flames out of the furnace, so that the fire did not touch any of them. Thus, they were in no pain or distress. Everything was fine with them, since they were not burning.

 

The three gates on the east side (Ezek 48:32-48:32)

“On the east side,

It shall be  

Four thousand five hundred cubits.

The three gates are

The gate of Joseph,

The gate of Benjamin,

The gate of Dan.”

There were 3 gates on the east side, 4,500 cubits from the center. It is interesting to note that Manasseh and Ephraim are no longer mentioned but merely their father, Joseph, as if it was only one tribe. The sons clearly had land given to them. The gate of Joseph would have been the most popular, since Benjamin and Dan were smaller tribes.

The rebellious ones in Jerusalem (Ezek 5:5-5:6)

“Thus says Yahweh God!

‘This is Jerusalem.

I have set her

In the center

Of the nations,

With countries

All around her.

She has rebelled

Against my ordinances.

She has rebelled

Against my statutes.

She has become

More wicked

Than the nations,

Than the countries,

All around her.

She has rejected

My ordinances.

She has not followed

My statutes.”

The God Yahweh spoke to Ezekiel about Jerusalem. Yahweh had put Jerusalem at the center of all the nations and countries that surrounded her. However, she has rebelled against the ordinances and statutes of Yahweh. She now has become more wicked that those nations and countries all around her, because she has rejected the ordinances of Yahweh. She has refused to follow the statutes of Yahweh.