Half will be taken away (Lk 17:34-17:34)

“I tell you!

On that night,

There will be two

In one bed.

One will be taken.

The other left.”

 

λέγω ὑμῖν, ταύτῃ τῇ νυκτὶ ἔσονται δύο ἐπὶ κλίνης μιᾶς, ὁ εἷς παραλημφθήσεται καὶ ὁ ἕτερος ἀφεθήσεται·

 

Luke uniquely indicated that Jesus said with a solemn pronouncement that he told them (λέγω ὑμῖν) on that night (ταύτῃ τῇ νυκτὶ), there would be two in one bed (ἔσονται δύο ἐπὶ κλίνης μιᾶς).  One would be taken (ὁ εἷς παραλημφθήσεται), but the other would be left (καὶ ὁ ἕτερος ἀφεθήσεται).  Only half the people would be taken during the end times, even from the same house.  It is difficult to discover what criteria would be used to determine one from the other.  Will it be completely random?

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The kingdom of God (Lk 17:20-17:20)

“Once,

Jesus

Was asked

By the Pharisees,

When the kingdom of God

Was coming?

He answered.

‘The kingdom of God

Is not coming

With observable signs.’”

 

Ἐπερωτηθεὶς δὲ ὑπὸ τῶν Φαρισαίων πότε ἔρχεται ἡ βασιλεία τοῦ Θεοῦ, ἀπεκρίθη αὐτοῖς καὶ εἶπεν Οὐκ ἔρχεται ἡ βασιλεία τοῦ Θεοῦ μετὰ παρατηρήσεως,

 

Luke uniquely indicated that the Pharisees questioned Jesus (Ἐπερωτηθεὶς δὲ ὑπὸ τῶν Φαρισαίων) about when the kingdom of God was coming (πότε ἔρχεται ἡ βασιλεία τοῦ Θεοῦ).  He answered them by saying (ἀπεκρίθη αὐτοῖς καὶ εἶπεν) that the kingdom of God (ἡ βασιλεία τοῦ Θεοῦ) was not coming with observable signs or careful watching (Οὐκ ἔρχεται…μετὰ παρατηρήσεως).  Once again, Luke used a Greek word παρατηρήσεως, meaning observation or careful watching, that was only found here and nowhere else in the Greek biblical literature.  Thus, no amount of careful watching or looking for signs would help them discover when the kingdom of God was coming.  This discussion between the Pharisees and Jesus about the meaning of the kingdom of God and when it was to come was, of course, of interest to the followers of Jesus also.  When do you think that the kingdom of God is coming?

Redaction criticism

The study of how the manuscript editions of the texts have changed is called redaction criticism.  This is the examination of these literary biblical document to discover how the biblical authors have formed and linked the materials together.  How did they edit these texts to establish their meaning and significance?

Scriptural Study

There are many ways to study the Bible, since it is a great book of literature, one of the most studied books of all time.  There are Bible study groups all over the world, and throughout the USA.  There are many courses on the study of the Bible, from grade school to post graduate classes.  Thus, there are a number of technical ways to study the biblical texts.  The goal of all critical studies is to discover the meaning and significance of these sacred canonical texts.

 

 

The Moses speech (Bar 2:29-2:31)

“‘If you will not obey

My voice,

This very great multitude

Will surely turn

Into a small number

Among the nations,

Where I will scatter them.

I know that they will not

Obey me.

They are a stiff-necked people.

But in the land of their exile

They will come to themselves.

They will know

That I am

The Lord their God.

I will give them

A heart

That obeys.

I will give them

Ears that hear.’”

This is reminiscent of the end of chapter 28 in Deuteronomy. There was no explicit mention of an exile in that chapter. However in chapter 30, there was a call to return from the scattered countries. The Israelites were to obey the voice of Yahweh. Otherwise this great multitude would become a small number of people among many nations, since they were going to be scattered. Moses and Yahweh knew that the Israelites would not obey the Mosaic Law because they were a stiff-necked people. However, they would discover themselves in the land of their exile. This happens a lot. When separated from their basic culture, people tend to re-discover all the great things of their original culture that they had overlooked. The Israelites would come to realize that Yahweh was their true God. Thus Yahweh would give them an obeying heart and hearing ears so that they would be more attentive to him.