The lit lamp (Lk 11:33-11:33)

“No one,

After lighting

A lamp,

Puts it

In a cellar.

Nor do they

Put it

Under a basket.

But they put it

On a lampstand.

Thus,

Those who enter

May see the light.”

 

Οὐδεὶς λύχνον ἅψας εἰς κρύπτην τίθησιν οὐδὲ ὑπὸ τὸν μόδιον, ἀλλ’ ἐπὶ τὴν λυχνίαν, ἵνα οἱ εἰσπορευόμενοι τὸ φέγγος βλέπωσιν.

 

Luke indicated that Jesus said that no one (Οὐδεὶς), after lighting a lamp (λύχνον ἅψας), puts it in a cellar (εἰς κρύπτην τίθησιν).  Nor do they put it under a basket (οὐδὲ ὑπὸ τὸν μόδιον).  Rather, they put it on a lampstand (ἀλλ’ ἐπὶ τὴν λυχνίαν).  Thus, those who enter may see the light (ἵνα οἱ εἰσπορευόμενοι τὸ φέγγος βλέπωσιν).  A similar saying of Jesus can be found in Matthew, chapter 5:15, and Mark, chapter 4:21, and earlier in Luke, chapter 8:16.  There Luke indicated that Jesus said that no one (Οὐδεὶς), after lighting a lamp (δὲ λύχνον ἅψας), would hide it under a jar or a vessel (καλύπτει αὐτὸν σκεύει).  No one puts a lamp under a bed (ἢ ὑποκάτω κλίνης τίθησιν).  But they put it on a lampstand (ἀλλ’ ἐπὶ λυχνίας τίθησιν).  Thus, those who enter the house (ἵνα οἱ εἰσπορευόμενοι) may see the light (βλέπωσιν τὸ φῶς).  Mark indicated that Jesus said to his disciples that a lamp should not be brought into a house to be put under a bushel basket or under a bed.  Rather it is better to put it on a lampstand.  Thus, the light from the lit candle lamp would shine on everyone and everything in the house.  Matthew was more expansive compared to Luke.  He indicated that Jesus said that after lighting a lamp, no one puts it under a bushel, but rather on a lampstand.  Thus, the light from the lit candle lamp would shine on everyone in the house.  Matthew, instead of leaving it generic, applied this to his disciples.  Their light should shine before other men.  Thus, others would see their good works, since it was not about faith alone.  The ultimate result would be that others would glorify their heavenly father.  Where do you put your lit lamp of your life?

 

The light of the world (Mt 5:14-5:14)

“You are

The light

Of the world!

A city built

On a hill

Cannot be hid.”

 

Ὑμεῖς ἐστε τὸ φῶς τοῦ κόσμου. οὐ δύναται πόλις κρυβῆναι ἐπάνω ὄρους κειμένη·

 

This saying of Jesus can be found in John, chapter 8:12. The main difference is that here Matthew has Jesus say that his disciples are the light of the world (Ὑμεῖς ἐστε τὸ φῶς τοῦ κόσμου), “you are” (Ὑμεῖς ἐστε). However, in John, Jesus said that he was the light of the world (Ἐγώ εἰμι τὸ φῶς τοῦ κόσμου), “I am” (Ἐγώ εἰμι). That is quite a difference. Are the disciples the light of the world or is only Jesus who is the light of the world? Or are they both lights to the world. I assume that they both can be. The disciples of Jesus were both the salt of the earth and the light of the world, so that they were very important people. Matthew then added a unique phrase about a city set on or built on a hill that could not hide itself (οὐ δύναται πόλις κρυβῆναι ἐπάνω ὄρους κειμένη), as if to say that the disciples were like a city on a hill that could not be hidden. These are powerful words about the disciples of Jesus.

The punishment for the idol worshippers (Am 9:2-9:4)

“Though they dig

Into Sheol,

From there,

Shall my hand take them.

Though they climb up

To heaven,

From there,

I will bring them down.

Though they hide themselves

On the top of Carmel,

From there,

I will search out.

I will take them.

Though they hide

From my sight

At the bottom of the sea,

From there,

I will command

The sea serpent.

It shall bite them.

Though they go into captivity,

In front of their enemies,

From there,

I will command the sword.

It shall kill them.

I will fix my eyes

Upon them,

For harm,

Not for good.”

The punishment for these northern idol worshippers would be severe.  They might try to hide in Sheol, the afterlife shadowy existence, but Yahweh would find them.  If they tried to get to heaven, he would take them out of there.  If they tried to hide on Mount Carmel, Yahweh would still find them.  If they went to the bottom of the sea, a sea monster would get them.  Even if they went into captivity, their captives would kill them with the sword.  No matter what, Yahweh was going to keep his eyes on them, so that nothing good would happen to them.  Quite the opposite, something harmful would happen to them.

The prostitute spirit In Ephraim (Hos 5:3-5:4)

“I know Ephraim!

Israel is not hidden

From me.

For now,

O Ephraim!

You have played

The prostitute.

Israel is defiled.

Their deeds

Do not permit them

To return

To their God.

The spirit of prostitution

Is within them.

They do not know

Yahweh.”

Yahweh, via Hosea, is particularly hard on the tribe of Ephraim, which was just north of Benjamin, with the capital of the northern Israelite kingdom there. Israel could not hide from Yahweh. Ephraim had played the prostitute role. Thus, Israel had defiled itself. By their deeds, they could not return to God. The spirit of prostitution had overtaken them. They no longer knew Yahweh. They had abandoned him.

The conclusion about Yahweh (Ezek 39:28-39:29)

“‘Then they shall know

That I am Yahweh,

Their God.

I sent them

Into exile

Among the nations.

I then gathered them

Into their own land.

I will leave

None of them

Behind.

I will never again

Hide my face

From them.

I will pour out

My Spirit

On the house of Israel.’

Says Yahweh God.”

Yahweh, via Ezekiel summarized his main idea that the house of Israel would now know that Yahweh was their God. He had sent them into exile and now he would gather them back into their own land, with none left behind. Yahweh said that he would never again hide his face from his people. He was going to pour out his Spirit on the house of Israel.

The priests and the idols (Bar 6:48-6:52)

“When war

Or calamity

Comes upon them,

The priests consult together

As to where

They can

Hide themselves

With their gods.

How then can anyone

Fail to see

That these are not gods?

They cannot save themselves

From war

Or calamity.

They are made of wood,

Overlaid

With gold

Or silver.

It will afterward

Be known

That they are false.

It will be manifest

To all the nations,

To all the kings,

That they are not gods

But the work of human hands.

There is no work

Of God

In them.

Who then can fail

To know

That they are not gods?”

What happens when war or calamity comes to these priests and their idol gods? The priests consult together on where they can hide themselves with their gods. All can see that these are not gods. They cannot save themselves from either war or calamity, since they are made of wood, overlaid with gold or silver. Afterwards, everyone will know that these were false gods. It is will be clear to all the nations and all the kings that they are not gods. As they were the work of human hands, there is no work of God in them. This author asked the question, who would not recognize that these idols are not gods?

The negative response of the Judean refugees (Jer 44:15-44:16)

“Then all the men

Who were aware

That their wives

Had been making offerings

To other gods,

Stood by

With their women.

This was a great assembly.

All the people

Who lived in Pathros

In the land of Egypt,

Answered Jeremiah.

‘As for the word

That you have spoken

To us

In the name of Yahweh,

We are not going

To listen to you.’”

There is an admission at the beginning of this response to Jeremiah that the wives of these men had been offering sacrifices to other gods. There is no attempt to hide this fact. All the people tried to respond, which is a euphemism for a spokesman, at least. They are quite concise and to the point. They are not going to listen to Jeremiah and his oracles about Yahweh. Perhaps even more interesting is the fact that these are the people who live in Parthos, the southern part of Egypt, near Nubia, not the northern area around Memphis and the upper Nile of Tahpanhes, where the first refugees stopped at. This might indicate that there were other Israelites or Judeans in Egypt.