The seeds on the rock have no roots (Lk 8:13-8:13)

“The seeds

On the rock

Are those who,

When they hear

The word,

Receive it with joy.

But they have no roots.

They believe

Only for a while.

In a time of temptation,

They fall away.”

 

οἱ δὲ ἐπὶ τῆς πέτρας οἳ ὅταν ἀκούσωσιν μετὰ χαρᾶς δέχονται τὸν λόγον, καὶ οὗτοι ῥίζαν οὐκ ἔχουσιν, οἳ πρὸς καιρὸν πιστεύουσιν καὶ ἐν καιρῷ πειρασμοῦ ἀφίστανται.

 

Luke said that that the seeds on the rock (οἱ δὲ ἐπὶ τῆς πέτρας) are like those who, when they heard (οἳ ὅταν ἀκούσωσιν) the word (τὸν λόγον), received it with joy (μετὰ χαρᾶς δέχονται).  However, they did not have any roots (καὶ οὗτοι ῥίζαν οὐκ ἔχουσιν).  They believed, but only for a while (οἳ πρὸς καιρὸν πιστεύουσιν).  In a time of temptation or testing (καὶ ἐν καιρῷ πειρασμοῦ), they would fall away (ἀφίστανται).  This explanation of the seeds sown on the rocky ground can be found in all 3 synoptic gospels, Matthew, chapter 13:20-21, Mark, chapter 4:16-17, and here, almost word for word.  Mark and Matthew said that Jesus explained that the seeds sown on the rocky ground were like the people who heard the word and immediately received it with joy.  Yet these seedlings did not have their own roots, but only temporary roots.  When trouble, tribulation, or persecution arose, because of the word, they immediately stumbled and fell away.  Once again, the seeds were the word.  Listening to the word was not enough, if it did not resonate or take root.  Due to this rocky ground, the early excitement of receiving the word was not good enough to sustain a continual adherence to the word.  There had to be good circumstances or pre-depositions to hearing and understanding for the word or the seed to be effective.  How deep are your believing roots?

The seeds are the word of God (Lk 8:11-8:11)

“Now the parable

Is this.

The seed is

The word of God.”

 

ἔστιν δὲ αὕτη ἡ παραβολή. ὁ σπόρος ἐστὶν ὁ λόγος τοῦ Θεοῦ

 

Luke indicated that Jesus explained the parable (ἔστιν δὲ αὕτη ἡ παραβολή) about the seed.  Quite simply, the seed is the word of God (ὁ σπόρος ἐστὶν ὁ λόγος τοῦ Θεοῦ).  This explanation about the seed in the sower parable, can be found in all 3 synoptic gospels, Mark, chapter 4:14, Matthew, chapter 13:18, and here.  Matthew explained that Jesus had asked them to hear this parable about the sower.  He said that this was all about hearing the word of the kingdom, since the seeds were the word of the kingdom.  Mark said that the seeds were the word, without any further clarification.  Luke and the other synoptics had no explanation about the sower himself, just the seed as the word of God or his kingdom.  How have you planted the seeds of the word of God?

Understanding the parables (Lk 8:10-8:10)

“Jesus said.

‘To you

It has been given

To know the secrets

Of the kingdom

Of God.

But to others,

I speak in parables.

Thus,

Looking,

They may not perceive!

Listening,

They may not understand!’”

 

ὁ δὲ εἶπεν Ὑμῖν δέδοται γνῶναι τὰ μυστήρια τῆς βασιλείας τοῦ Θεοῦ, τοῖς δὲ λοιποῖς ἐν παραβολαῖς, ἵνα βλέποντες μὴ βλέπωσιν καὶ ἀκούοντες μὴ συνιῶσιν.

 

Luke indicated that Jesus said (ὁ δὲ εἶπεν) to his disciples that they would be able to understand the secrets (Ὑμῖν δέδοται γνῶναι τὰ μυστήρια) of the kingdom of God (τῆς βασιλείας τοῦ Θεοῦ).  But to others (τοῖς δὲ λοιποῖς), he would be speaking in parables or riddles (ἐν παραβολαῖς).  Thus, these people might look (ἵνα βλέποντες), but not see (μὴ βλέπωσιν).  They might listen (καὶ ἀκούοντες), but not understand (μὴ συνιῶσιν).  This response of Jesus about the meaning of parables can be found in all 3 synoptic gospels, Mark, chapter 4:11-12, and Matthew, chapter 13:11-15, and here.  Matthew and Mark also said that Jesus told his disciples that they had been given knowledge concerning the secret mysteries about the kingdom of heaven or the kingdom of God.  However, this was not granted to others.  Matthew had Jesus explain that those who had more knowledge, even more abundant knowledge would be given to them.  However, those who had nothing, even what little they had would be taken away.  The reason that Jesus spoke in parables was that some people might see, but not perceive what they saw, while other people might hear but not understand what they have heard.  For people outside their disciple group, everything was still in parables or riddles.  Only those on the inside would understand these parables, while those outside the inner circle of Jesus would not understand these riddles.  This was almost like a gnostic interpretation of knowledge, where only the elite insiders had a true secret knowledge about the mysteries and the kingdom of God and heaven.  Matthew also had a long citation from Isaiah, chapter 6:9-10, about the people unable to understand, while Luke, and Mark had only a short summary statement.  Isaiah told the Israelite people that they were listening without comprehending.  They were looking without understanding.  Their hearts were dull and their eyes and ears were closed.  They were experiencing and listening, but they could not hear or understand.  Do you understand what you see and hear?

Listen if you have ears! (Lk 8:8-8:8)

“As he said this,

Jesus called out.

‘Let anyone

With ears

To hear,

Listen!’”

 

ταῦτα λέγων ἐφώνει Ὁ ἔχων ὦτα ἀκούειν ἀκουέτω.

 

This warning at the end of the sower parable can be found in all 3 synoptic gospels, in Matthew, chapter 13:8, Mark, chapter 4:9, and here.  Luke ended this parable by having Jesus call out (ταῦτα λέγων ἐφώνει).  Anyone with ears to hear (Ὁ ἔχων ὦτα ἀκούειν), should listen (ἀκουέτω) to this parable, the same in all 3 gospel stories.  Jesus warned them.  He often mentioned the importance of hearing and listening to what he was saying.  Are you a good listener?

Tell him what you have seen (Lk 7:22-7:22)

“Jesus answered them.

‘Go!

Tell John!

What you have seen

And heard.

The blind

Receive their sight.

The lame

Walk.

The lepers

Are cleansed.

The deaf

Hear.

The dead

Are raised up.

The poor

Have good news

Brought to them.’”

 

καὶ ἀποκριθεὶς εἶπεν αὐτοῖς Πορευθέντες ἀπαγγείλατε Ἰωάνει ἃ εἴδετε καὶ ἠκούσατε· τυφλοὶ ἀναβλέπουσιν, χωλοὶ περιπατοῦσιν, λεπροὶ καθαρίζονται, καὶ κωφοὶ ἀκούουσιν, νεκροὶ ἐγείρονται, πτωχοὶ εὐαγγελίζονται·

 

Luke said that Jesus answered the disciples of John (καὶ ἀποκριθεὶς εἶπεν αὐτοῖς).  He told them to go tell John (Πορευθέντες ἀπαγγείλατε Ἰωάνει) what they had seen and heard (ἃ εἴδετε καὶ ἠκούσατε).  The blind ones receive their sight (τυφλοὶ ἀναβλέπουσιν).  The lame walk (χωλοὶ περιπατοῦσιν).  The lepers are cleansed (λεπροὶ καθαρίζονται).  The deaf hear (καὶ κωφοὶ ἀκούουσιν).  The dead are raised up (νεκροὶ ἐγείρονται).  The poor have good news brought to them (πτωχοὶ εὐαγγελίζονται).  This is almost word for word like Matthew, chapter 11:4-5, indicating a possible Q source.  Jesus responded or answered these disciples and their main question.  He told them to report back to John after their journey what they had heard and seen.  Then Jesus listed what he had been doing.  The blind people have recovered their sight.  The lame people were walking around.  The lepers were cleansed.  The deaf were able to hear.  The dead were raised up.  The poor and destitute people were getting good news brought to them.  This is a very strong response, as if to say that he was the Messiah, the Christ, the anointed one, something that Jesus did not do often.  This messianic expectation was based on Isaiah, chapter 35:4-6, when the savior, their God would come with a vengeance to make up for past problems.  He would come to save them.  Isaiah seems to indicate that there would be a reversal of fortune, a change in the ways that things happen.  The blind would see.  The deaf would hear.  The lame would run.  The mute people would speak.  Have you had a change in your life?

Cure the unclean spirits (Lk 6:18-6:18)

“They came

To hear him.

They came

To be healed

Of their diseases.

Those who were troubled

With unclean spirits

Were cured.”

 

οἳ ἦλθον ἀκοῦσαι αὐτοῦ καὶ ἰαθῆναι ἀπὸ τῶν νόσων αὐτῶν, καὶ οἱ ἐνοχλούμενοι ἀπὸ πνευμάτων ἀκαθάρτων ἐθεραπεύοντο·

 

Luke was the only one who explained why they came to hear Jesus (οἳ ἦλθον ἀκοῦσαι αὐτοῦ).  They came to be healed of their diseases (καὶ ἰαθῆναι ἀπὸ τῶν νόσων αὐτῶν).  Those who were troubled with unclean spirits were cured (καὶ οἱ ἐνοχλούμενοι ἀπὸ πνευμάτων ἀκαθάρτων ἐθεραπεύοντο).  Jesus was a true faith healer.

People listen to Jesus (Lk 5:15-5:15)

“But now,

More than ever,

The word

About Jesus

Spread abroad.

Many crowds

Would gather

To hear him.

He cured many

Of their diseases.”

 

διήρχετο δὲ μᾶλλον ὁ λόγος περὶ αὐτοῦ, καὶ συνήρχοντο ὄχλοι πολλοὶ ἀκούειν καὶ θεραπεύεσθαι ἀπὸ τῶν ἀσθενειῶν αὐτῶν

 

This is more or less a unique saying of Luke, who said that now, more than ever, the word or report about Jesus spread abroad (διήρχετο δὲ μᾶλλον ὁ λόγος περὶ αὐτοῦ,).  Many large crowds would gather to hear him (καὶ συνήρχοντο ὄχλοι πολλοὶ ἀκούειν).  Then he cured many people of their diseases (αὶ θεραπεύεσθαι ἀπὸ τῶν ἀσθενειῶν αὐτῶν).  There is nothing like this in MatthewMark, chapter 1:45, on the other hand, said that after this cleansed leper went away, he began to proclaim what had happened to him.  Then the news about his cleansing spread around, so that Jesus was no longer able to openly enter into a city or town.  He had to stay out in the solitary deserted countryside.  Nevertheless, the people came to him from all around the area or from various quarters.  The cleansed leper did not keep quiet, so that this led to more consternation for Jesus.  Luke was not that explicit, but hinted at it.

Gennesaret (Lk 5:1-5:1)

“Once while Jesus

Was standing beside

The lake of Gennesaret,

The crowd

Was pressing in

On him

To hear

The word of God.”

 

Ἐγένετο δὲ ἐν τῷ τὸν ὄχλον ἐπικεῖσθαι αὐτῷ καὶ ἀκούειν τὸν λόγον τοῦ Θεοῦ, καὶ αὐτὸς ἦν ἑστὼς παρὰ τὴν λίμνην Γεννησαρέτ,

 

This verse of Luke is unique but not inconsistent with the other gospel stories.  Luke said that Jesus was standing beside the lake of Gennesaret (καὶ αὐτὸς ἦν ἑστὼς παρὰ τὴν λίμνην Γεννησαρέτ).  Gennesaret was another name for the Sea of Galilee or Lake Tiberias.  Then the crowd was pressing in on him (Ἐγένετο δὲ ἐν τῷ τὸν ὄχλον ἐπικεῖσθαι αὐτῷ) to hear the word of God (καὶ ἀκούειν τὸν λόγον τοῦ Θεοῦ).  Jesus was standing there as a crowd gathered around him.  They wanted to hear the word of God, as if Jesus were somehow qualified to present this word of God.

Peter will deny him three times (Mk 14:30-14:30)

“Jesus said

To Peter.

‘Truly!

I say to you!

This day!

This very night!

Before the cock

Crows twice,

You will deny me

Three times!’”

 

καὶ λέγει αὐτῷ ὁ Ἰησοῦς Ἀμὴν λέγω σοι ὅτι σὺ σήμερον ταύτῃ τῇ νυκτὶ πρὶν ἢ δὶς ἀλέκτορα φωνῆσαι τρίς με ἀπαρνήσῃ.

 

This is almost word for word in Matthew, chapter 26:30, but the cock crowed twice here rather than once as in Matthew.  In Luke, chapter 22:34, and John, chapter 13:38, there is one cock crow, but also three denials.  Jesus then turned on Peter.  Mark indicated that Jesus said to Peter (καὶ λέγει αὐτῷ ὁ Ἰησοῦς) with a solemn pronouncement (Ἀμὴν λέγω σοι) that now this very night (ὅτι σὺ σήμερον ταύτῃ τῇ νυκτὶ) before the cock or rooster would crow twice (πρὶν ἢ δὶς ἀλέκτορα φωνῆσαι), Peter would deny or disown him three times (τρὶς με ἀπαρνήσῃ).  Peter was probably astonished to hear this.

Rumors of war (Mk 13:7-13:7)

“When you hear

Of wars

And rumors of wars,

Do not be alarmed!

This must take place!

But the end

Is still to come.”

 

ὅταν δὲ ἀκούσητε πολέμους καὶ ἀκοὰς πολέμων, μὴ θροεῖσθε· δεῖ γενέσθαι, ἀλλ’ οὔπω τὸ τέλος.

 

There is something similar in Matthew, chapter 24:6, and in Luke, chapter 21:9, almost word for word.  Mark indicated that Jesus told them that they would hear about wars or battles (ὅταν δὲ ἀκούσητε πολέμους) and rumors of wars (καὶ ἀκοὰς πολέμων).  They should not be alarmed (μὴ θροεῖσθε).  This was going to happen (δεῖ γενέσθαι).  However, this was not the end, since it was not near (ἀλλ’ οὔπω τὸ τέλος).  The idea of strife, rumors of violence, and wars was a great prophetic theme with Isaiah, chapter 19:1-4, and Jeremiah, chapter 51:46.