A parable for the crowd (Lk 8:4-8:4)

“A great crowd

Gathered.

People

From town

After town

Came to him.

He spoke

In a parable.”

 

Συνιόντος δὲ ὄχλου πολλοῦ καὶ τῶν κατὰ πόλιν ἐπιπορευομένων πρὸς αὐτὸν εἶπεν διὰ παραβολῆς

 

Luke continued to emphasize the popularity of Jesus.  He said that a great crowd gathered around Jesus (Συνιόντος δὲ ὄχλου πολλοῦ).  People from many towns came to him (καὶ τῶν κατὰ πόλιν ἐπιπορευομένων πρὸς αὐτὸν) so that he spoke to them in a parable (εἶπεν διὰ παραβολῆς).  A similar statement can be found in Matthew, chapter 13:1, and Mark, chapter 4:1.  Mark indicated that Jesus began to teach beside the Sea of Galilee.  As a great crowd assembled around him, Jesus got into a boat.  He then sat there in the boat, while the whole crowd was on the beach shore land.  Matthew said that Jesus sat beside the Sea of Galilee, in the usual gesture of teaching.  But he also had Jesus get into a boat because of the crowds.  Luke did not indicate where Jesus was, except that there was a large crowd from many different towns.  He never mentioned the Sea of Galilee or any boat, since he was more concerned about this parable.  Do you like parables?

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Jesus goes to Gerasenes (Mk 5:1-5:1)

“They came

To the other side

Of the sea,

To the country

Of the Gerasenes.”

 

Καὶ ἦλθον εἰς τὸ πέραν τῆς θαλάσσης εἰς τὴν χώραν τῶν Γερασηνῶν.

 

All three synoptic gospels, Matthew, chapter 8:28, and Luke, chapter 8:26-27, as well as Mark here, have Jesus cross to the other side of the Sea of Galilee (Καὶ ἦλθον εἰς τὸ πέραν τῆς θαλάσσης) to go the country or region of the Gerasenes (εἰς τὴν χώραν τῶν Γερασηνῶν).  Matthew called it Gadarenes, while Luke called it Garasenes, like Mark.  There were 2 different towns on the east bank of the Jordan in the Decapolis territory, a group of 10 cities.  One was called Gadara, about 6 miles away from the southeast side of the Sea of Galilee, near where the Sea of Galilee ran into the Jordan River.  Today, it is in the country of Jordan.  The other Decapolis town was called Gerasa, a town about 40 miles from the Sea of Galilee, which would be more inconsistent with this story.  Nevertheless, this was Gentile territory with a few Jewish people there.