I do not know you (Lk 13:27-13:27)

“But he will say.

‘I tell you!

I do not know

Where you come from.

Go away

From me!

All you evildoers!’”

 

καὶ ἐρεῖ λέγων ὑμῖν Οὐκ οἶδα πόθεν ἐστέ· ἀπόστητε ἀπ’ ἐμοῦ πάντες ἐργάται ἀδικίας.

 

Luke continued with the response of Jesus with a solemn pronouncement (καὶ ἐρεῖ λέγων ὑμῖν) that he did not know where they came from (Οὐκ οἶδα πόθεν ἐστέ).  They were to go away from him (ἀπόστητε ἀπ’ ἐμοῦ), since they were all evildoers, workers of evil (πάντες ἐργάται ἀδικίας).  This verse is somewhat similar to Matthew, chapter 7:23, from the Sermon on the Mount, perhaps a Q source.  Jesus was going to declare to them that he never knew them, because they were evildoers.  Just as David had told the evildoers to depart in Psalm 6:13, Jesus wanted these evildoers to leave him alone.  Who were these evil doers?  They seem like friendly disciples of Jesus.  What evil had they done to make them unworthy on the final judgment day?  The answer was not clear.  Would you consider yourself an evil doer?

The reluctant returning children to an overcrowded land (Isa 49:19-49:21)

“Surely your waste land

Will now be too crowded

For your inhabitants.

Your desolate places

Will surely now be too crowded

For your inhabitants.

Your devastated land

Will surely now be too crowded

For your inhabitants.

Those who swallowed you up

Will be far away.

The children born

In the time of your bereavement

Will yet say in your hearing?

‘The place is too crowded for me.

Make room for me to settle.’

Then you will say in your heart.

‘Who has borne me these?

I was bereaved.

I was barren.

I was exiled.

I was put away.

So who has reared these?

I was left all alone.

Where then have these come from?’”

Second Isaiah raises the question about overcrowding if all the exiles returned. There would be a special problem for those born in exile that had never lived in Israel. Why would they want to return there? The land was wasted, desolate, and devastated, why would anyone want to live in overcrowded conditions there? Their captives were gone. However, what would entice those who had spent their entire life elsewhere to move to a place that they had never known. There was nothing there to attract them. In fact, the mothers were upset at their children. They had spent their life bereaved, barren, alone, and exiled in a far away land. Who had reared these kids? Where did they come from? Why didn’t they want to go back to Israel? Was the influence of this new country too much for their own children?

Humans and animals (Eccl 3:18-3:21)

“I said in my heart

With regard to humans

That God is testing them

To show

That they are but animals.

‘The fate of humans,

The fate of animals

Is the same.

As one dies,

So does the other.

They all have the same breath.

Humans have no advantage

Over the animals.

All is vanity.

All go to one place.

All are from dust.

All turn to dust again.

Who knows

Whether the human spirit

Goes upward?

Who knows

Whether the spirit of animals

Goes downward to the earth?’”

Qoheleth makes a comparison of humans to animals. He does not see much difference. They both share the same fate. They both die. The humans try in vain to show that they more than animals. However, they have no advantage, since all is vanity. They both come from and go to dust. Do they go to the same place? Do humans really go up and animals go down? Qoheleth sees a spirit in both humans and animals. So we are left with this dilemma of the afterlife of humans and animals.

An ode to miners (Job 28:1-28:12)

“Surely there is a mine for silver.

There is a place for gold to be refined.

Iron is taken out of the earth.

Copper is smelted from ore.

Miners put an end to darkness.

They search out to the farthest bound.

They search for the ore in gloom and deep darkness.

They open shafts in a valley away from human habitation.

They are forgotten by travelers.

They sway suspended.

They are remote from people.

As for the earth,

Out of it comes bread.

But underneath it is turned up as by fire.

Its stones are the place of sapphires.

Its dust contains gold.”

Here is a hymn to wisdom. There is no indication of any kind of dialogue or assignment to any person. This is then an insertion of the biblical author or the thought of Job as interpreted by the biblical author. You can explain away many things by showing where they come from. This is like a miner’s prayer. The author points out that you can mine for gold and silver. You can take the iron and copper ore and smelt it. These miners open up shafts in the valley. They dig holes where humans do not live. They are forgotten by travelers, as they go beneath the earth to find sapphires and gold dust. It really is an ode to miners and the work they do. Obviously mining was important over 2500 years ago, although we have sometimes forgotten that.