Make friends (Lk 16:9-16:9)

“I tell you!

Make friends

For yourselves

By means

Of dishonest wealth!

Thus,

When it is gone,

They may welcome you

Into the eternal homes.”

 

Καὶ ἐγὼ ὑμῖν λέγω, ἑαυτοῖς ποιήσατε φίλους ἐκ τοῦ μαμωνᾶ τῆς ἀδικίας, ἵνα ὅταν ἐκλίπῃ δέξωνται ὑμᾶς εἰς τὰς αἰωνίους σκηνάς.

 

This parable story about the dishonest household manager or steward can only be found in Luke, not in any of the other gospel stories.  Luke indicated that Jesus said with a solemn pronouncement (Καὶ ἐγὼ ὑμῖν λέγω) that they should make friends for themselves (ἑαυτοῖς ποιήσατε φίλους) by means of dishonest wealth (ἐκ τοῦ μαμωνᾶ τῆς ἀδικίας).  Actually, this Greek word μαμωνᾶ is a transliteration of the Aramaic word mammon that means money or wealth.  Then, when it was gone or failed (ἵνα ὅταν ἐκλίπῃ), they would be welcomed or received (δέξωνται ὑμᾶς) into their eternal homes (εἰς τὰς αἰωνίους σκηνάς).  What did this mean?  They had nothing with their dishonest wealth and money, if it did not get them into eternal life.  Would you choose wealth or eternal heaven?

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She was more concerned than you (Lk 7:44-7:44)

“Then turning toward

The woman,

Jesus said to Simon.

‘Do you see

This woman?

I entered your house.

You gave me

No water

For my feet.

But she has bathed

My feet

With her tears.

She has dried them

With her hair.’”

 

καὶ στραφεὶς πρὸς τὴν γυναῖκα τῷ Σίμωνι ἔφη Βλέπεις ταύτην τὴν γυναῖκα; εἰσῆλθόν σου εἰς τὴν οἰκίαν, ὕδωρ μοι ἐπὶ πόδας οὐκ ἔδωκας· αὕτη δὲ τοῖς δάκρυσιν ἔβρεξέν μου τοὺς πόδας καὶ ταῖς θριξὶν αὐτῆς ἐξέμαξεν.

 

Luke said that Jesus turned toward the woman (καὶ στραφεὶς πρὸς τὴν γυναῖκα), but he spoke to Simon (τῷ Σίμωνι ἔφη) in the second person singular.  Did he see this woman (Βλέπεις ταύτην τὴν γυναῖκα)?  Jesus had entered his house (εἰσῆλθόν σου εἰς τὴν οἰκίαν), but he had not given him any water for his feet (ὕδωρ μοι ἐπὶ πόδας οὐκ ἔδωκας).  However, she bathed and wiped his feet with her tears (αὕτη δὲ τοῖς δάκρυσιν ἔβρεξέν μου τοὺς πόδας).  She then dried his feet with her hair (καὶ ταῖς θριξὶν αὐτῆς ἐξέμαξεν).  Jesus compared what she had done to him and what Simon, the Pharisee, the host of this dinner party, had failed to do.  In both Mark, chapter 14:6, and Matthew, chapter 26:10, Jesus said that the women had done a good thing, but without any reprimand of the host, Simon the leper, like here.  Have you ever complained to the host or hostess at a dinner party?

The devil leaves (Lk 4:13-4:13)

“When the devil

Had finished

Every test,

He departed

From him

Until another

Opportune time.”

 

Καὶ συντελέσας πάντα πειρασμὸν ὁ διάβολος ἀπέστη ἀπ’ αὐτοῦ ἄχρι καιροῦ.

 

This ending is not quite the same as in Matthew, chapter 4:11, where angels came to wait on Jesus.  Here there are no angels, but the show was over for now.  Luke said that the devil had finished every test (Καὶ συντελέσας πάντα πειρασμὸν).  Thus, he departed from Jesus (ὁ διάβολος ἀπέστη ἀπ’ αὐτοῦ) until a later opportunity or another time (ἄχρι καιροῦ).  The devil had failed to convince Jesus in any of these temptations.  He was gone for now, but would return again.  Jesus had passed his first test.  Score one for the good guys.

Peter began to swear (Mk 14:71-14:71)

“But Peter began

To curse.

He swore an oath.

‘I do not know

This man

You are talking about.’”

 

ὁ δὲ ἤρξατο ἀναθεματίζειν καὶ ὀμνύναι ὅτι Οὐκ οἶδα τὸν ἄνθρωπον τοῦτον ὃν λέγετε

 

This is almost word for word in Matthew, chapter 26:74.  There is something similar in Luke, chapter 22: 60, and John, chapter 18:27.  However, Luke did not have the curse or the oath, while John said that Peter simply denied Jesus.  Mark said that Peter began to curse (ὁ δὲ ἤρξατο ἀναθεματίζειν).  He swore an oath that he did not know this man (καὶ ὀμνύειν ὅτι Οὐκ οἶδα τὸν ἄνθρωπον) that they were talking about (τοῦτον ὃν λέγετε).  Thus, we have the 3rd public denial of Jesus by Peter that can be found in all 4 gospels.  This great apostolic leader had failed his first major test just as Jesus had predicted, despite his bombastic earlier outbursts that it would never happen.  Are you sometimes too bombastic?

 

Jesus found them asleep again (Mk 14:40-14:40)

“Once more,

Jesus came.

He found them

Sleeping.

Their eyes

Were very heavy.

They did not know

What to say to him.”

 

καὶ πάλιν ἐλθὼν εὗρεν αὐτοὺς καθεύδοντας, ἦσαν γὰρ αὐτῶν οἱ ὀφθαλμοὶ καταβαρυνόμενοι, καὶ οὐκ ᾔδεισαν τί ἀποκριθῶσιν αὐτῷ.

 

This is almost word for word in Matthew, chapter 26:43, but there is an addition about the apostles being embarrassed and not able to say anything here.  In Luke, chapter 22, and John, chapter 22, there is nothing more about these 2nd and 3rd visits of Jesus.  Mark recounted that Jesus again came (καὶ πάλιν ἐλθὼν) and this time he again found his 3 disciples sleeping (εὗρεν αὐτοὺς καθεύδοντας), because their eyes were heavy or overburdened (ἦσαν γὰρ αὐτῶν οἱ ὀφθαλμοὶ καταβαρυνόμενοι).  This was the 2nd time that he found his 3 trusted apostles sleeping.  There were no excuses, except that they were tired.  They did not know what to answer to Jesus (καὶ οὐκ ᾔδεισαν τί ἀποκριθῶσιν αὐτῷ).  They had failed to stay awake and be vigilant, pure and simple.

They were amazed (Mk 12:17-12:17)

“They were utterly amazed

At Jesus.”

 

καὶ ἐξεθαύμαζον ἐπ’ αὐτῷ.

 

There is something similar in Matthew, chapter 22:22, and in Luke, chapter 20:26, where the Pharisees and Herodians were amazed, but there was no mention of them leaving as in Matthew, or being silent as in LukeMark said that when these disciples of the Pharisees and Herodians heard this response, they were amazed or marveled at Jesus (καὶ ἐξεθαύμαζον ἐπ’ αὐτῷ).  They had failed to trip up Jesus, as was their plan.

The third denial (Mt 26:73-26:74)

“After a little while,

Bystanders came up.

They said to Peter.

‘Certainly,

You are also

One of them.

Your accent

Betrays you.’

Then he began

To curse.

He swore an oath.

‘I do not know this man.’”

 

μετὰ μικρὸν δὲ προσελθόντες οἱ ἑστῶτες εἶπον τῷ Πέτρῳ Ἀληθῶς καὶ σὺ ἐξ αὐτῶν εἶ, καὶ γὰρ ἡ λαλιά σου δῆλόν σε ποιεῖ.

τότε ἤρξατο καταθεματίζειν καὶ ὀμνύειν ὅτι Οὐκ οἶδα τὸν ἄνθρωπον.

 

This is almost word for word in Mark, chapter 14:70-71.  There is something similar in Luke, chapter 22:59-60, and John, chapter 18:26-27.  However, Luke did not have the curse or the oath, while John said that the man recognized Peter because he was a relative of the one whose ear Peter had cut off.  Matthew and Mark said that after a little while (μετὰ μικρὸν), some of the bystanders said to Peter (οἱ ἑστῶτες εἶπον τῷ Πέτρῳ) that he certainly was one of the followers of Jesus (Ἀληθῶς καὶ σὺ ἐξ αὐτῶν εἶ), because of his northern Galilee accent in his speech that betrayed him (καὶ γὰρ ἡ λαλιά σου δῆλόν σε ποιεῖ).  Then Peter began to curse (τότε ἤρξατο καταθεματίζειν).  He swore an oath that he did not know this man (καὶ ὀμνύειν ὅτι Οὐκ οἶδα τὸν ἄνθρωπον).  Thus, we have the 3rd public denial of Jesus by Peter that can be found in all 4 gospels.  This apostolic leader had failed his first major test just as Jesus had predicted, despite his bombastic earlier outbursts that it would never happen.