Will the Son of Man find faith on earth? (Lk 18:8-18:8)

“I tell you!

He will quickly

Grant justice

To them.

Nevertheless,

When the Son of Man

Comes,

Will he find faith

On earth?”

 

λέγω ὑμῖν ὅτι ποιήσει τὴν ἐκδίκησιν αὐτῶν ἐν τάχει. πλὴν ὁ Υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ἐλθὼν ἆρα εὑρήσει τὴν πίστιν ἐπὶ τῆς γῆς;

 

Luke is the only synoptic writer with this parable about the widow and the bad judge.  Luke indicated that Jesus concluded this story with a solemn pronouncement (λέγω ὑμῖν) that God will quickly grant justice to them (ὅτι ποιήσει τὴν ἐκδίκησιν αὐτῶν ἐν τάχει).  When the Son of Man comes (πλὴν ὁ Υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ἐλθὼν), will he find faith (ἆρα εὑρήσει τὴν πίστιν) on earth (ἐπὶ τῆς γῆς)?  What will the Son of Man find on the judgment day?  His justice will be quick.  The solution, be ready at all times.  Are you ready for the Son of Man to return?

 

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Wear the bad judge out (Lk 18:5-18:5)

“Yet because this widow

Keeps bothering me,

I will grant her justice.

Thus,

She may not

Wear me out

By her continual harassment.”

 

διά γε τὸ παρέχειν μοι κόπον τὴν χήραν ταύτην ἐκδικήσω αὐτήν, ἵνα μὴ εἰς τέλος ἐρχομένη ὑπωπιάζῃ με.

 

Luke is the only synoptic writer with this parable about the widow and the bad judge.  Luke indicated that Jesus said that because this widow (τὴν χήραν ταύτην) kept bothering or causing trouble (διά γε τὸ παρέχειν μοι κόπον) to this bad judge, he was going to grant her justice (ἐκδικήσω αὐτήν).  Thus, she would not wear him out by her continual exhausting harassment (ἵνα μὴ εἰς τέλος ἐρχομένη ὑπωπιάζῃ με) anymore.  In other words, this bad judge just wanted to get rid of this widow, because she was exhausting him with all her supplications and demands.  Thus, he granted her a verdict of vengeance against her enemy.  Have you ever had a favorable court ruling?

The widow’s petition (Lk 18:3-18:3)

“In that city,

There was a widow

Who kept coming

To him.

Saying.

‘Grant me justice

Against my opponent!’”

 

χήρα δὲ ἦν ἐν τῇ πόλει ἐκείνῃ, καὶ ἤρχετο πρὸς αὐτὸν λέγουσα Ἐκδίκησόν με ἀπὸ τοῦ ἀντιδίκου μου.

 

Luke is the only synoptic writer with this parable about the widow and the bad judge.  Luke indicated that Jesus said there was a widow in that city (χήρα δὲ ἦν ἐν τῇ πόλει ἐκείνῃ).  She kept coming to this bad judge (καὶ ἤρχετο πρὸς αὐτὸν).  She said (λέγουσα) that she wanted justice or restitution (Ἐκδίκησόν με) against her opponent or adversary (ἀπὸ τοῦ ἀντιδίκου μου).  Widows were the powerless and vulnerable in Jewish society, since they had lost the support of their husbands.  People would always be reminded to help the poor and the widows, as they were considered the same class of people, since generally, older women without husbands were poor.  This particular widow had a case against someone, so that she kept coming back to his bad judge to achieve justice or vengeance on her part.  Have you ever sued anyone?

Ask! (Lk 11:9-11:9)

“I tell you!

Ask!

It will be given you.

Search!

You will find it.

Knock!

The door

Will be opened

For you.”

 

Κἀγὼ ὑμῖν λέγω, αἰτεῖτε, καὶ δοθήσεται ὑμῖν· ζητεῖτε, καὶ εὑρήσετε· κρούετε, καὶ ἀνοιγήσεται ὑμῖν·

 

Luke indicated that Jesus told them with a solemn proclamation (Κἀγὼ ὑμῖν λέγω) that they should only ask (αἰτεῖτε), and then it would be given to them (καὶ δοθήσεται ὑμῖν).  They were to search (ζητεῖτε), and they would find it (καὶ εὑρήσετε).  Just knock (κρούετε), and the door would be opened for them (καὶ ἀνοιγήσεται ὑμῖν).  Matthew, chapter 7:7, has a similar saying of Jesus, almost word for word, indicating a common Q source.  Jesus told them to ask (Αἰτεῖτε), and they would get it (καὶ δοθήσεται ὑμῖν).  Seek (ζητεῖτε), and they would find it (καὶ εὑρήσετε).  Knock (κρούετε), and it would be opened (καὶ ἀνοιγήσεται ὑμῖν).  Everything seemed so easy.  All they had to do was request things from the Father and he would grant it.  Do you make simple requests to God the Father?

Serve without fear (Lk 1:74-1:75)

“Grant that we,

Being rescued

From the hands

Of our enemies,

Might serve God

Without fear

In holiness

And righteousness

Before him

All our days.”

 

ἀφόβως ἐκ χειρὸς ἐχθρῶν ῥυσθέντας λατρεύειν αὐτῷ

ἐν ὁσιότητι καὶ δικαιοσύνῃ ἐνώπιον αὐτοῦ πάσαις ταῖς ἡμέραις ἡμῶν.

 

Next Zechariah, via Luke, turned to the present day.  He wanted to be rescued or saved (ῥυσθέντας) from the hands of his enemies (ἐκ χειρὸς ἐχθρῶν).  Thus, he might serve God (λατρεύειν αὐτῷ) without fear (ἀφόβως) in holiness (ἐν ὁσιότητι) and righteousness (καὶ δικαιοσύνῃ) before God (ἐνώπιον αὐτοῦ) all the days of his life (πάσαις ταῖς ἡμέραις ἡμῶν).  Zachariah wanted to continue to worship the Lord, God, correctly during his whole life.

The good news about a son (Lk 1:13-1:13)

“Your prayer

Has been heard.

Your wife,

Elizabeth,

Will bear you

A son.

You will name him

John.”

 

διότι εἰσηκούσθη ἡ δέησίς σου, καὶ ἡ γυνή σου Ἐλεισάβετ γεννήσει υἱόν σοι, καὶ καλέσεις τὸ ὄνομα αὐτοῦ Ἰωάνην·

 

Luke then has this good news for Zechariah.  The heart of this message was that he was going to have a son.  This angel said that his prayer, supplication, or entreaty had been heard (διότι εἰσηκούσθη ἡ δέησίς σου).  His wife Elizabeth would bear him son (αὶ ἡ γυνή σου Ἐλεισάβετ γεννήσει υἱόν σοι).  He was to name or call him John (καὶ καλέσεις τὸ ὄνομα αὐτοῦ Ἰωάνην).  This was a nice simple message, nothing complicated.  God was going to grant this barren old couple a son who should be called John.

They want to sit on the right and left of Jesus (Mk 10:37-10:37)

“They said

To Jesus.

‘Grant us

To sit,

One at your right hand

And one at your left hand,

In your glory.’”

 

οἱ δὲ εἶπαν αὐτῷ Δὸς ἡμῖν ἵνα εἷς σου ἐκ δεξιῶν καὶ εἷς ἐξ ἀριστερῶν καθίσωμεν ἐν τῇ δόξῃ σου.

 

There is something similar to this in Matthew, chapter 20:21, but here the brothers, rather than their mother spoke with Jesus.  Mark said that the 2 brothers responded to Jesus (οἱ δὲ εἶπαν αὐτῷ).  They wanted him to let them sit at his right hand (Δὸς ἡμῖν ἵνα εἷς σου ἐκ δεξιῶν) and at his left hand (καὶ εἷς ἐξ ἀριστερῶν καθίσωμεν) when Jesus came in all his glory (ἐν τῇ δόξῃ σου).  After all, they had been with Peter at the transfiguration and were among the four original disciples.  Thus, they were already very special.  Perhaps, they thought of this as an earthly kingdom.  Ironically enough at the crucifixion of Jesus, it would be two thieves on the right and left side of Jesus.