Not fit for the kingdom of God (Lk 9:62-9:62)

“Jesus said to him.

‘No one

Who puts his hand

To the plow

And looks back

Is fit

For the kingdom of God.’”

 

εἶπεν δὲ πρὸς αὐτὸν ὁ Ἰησοῦς Οὐδεὶς ἐπιβαλὼν τὴν χεῖρα ἐπ’ ἄροτρον καὶ βλέπων εἰς τὰ ὀπίσω εὔθετός ἐστιν τῇ βασιλείᾳ τοῦ Θεοῦ.

 

Luke uniquely indicated that Jesus responded to this person (εἶπεν δὲ πρὸς αὐτὸν ὁ Ἰησοῦς) by saying that no one who puts his hand to the plow (Οὐδεὶς ἐπιβαλὼν τὴν χεῖρα ἐπ’ ἄροτρον) and then looks back (καὶ βλέπων εἰς τὰ ὀπίσω) was fit (εὔθετός ἐστιν) for the kingdom of God (τῇ βασιλείᾳ τοῦ Θεοῦ).  This was another unique saying of Luke that was not found in Matthew.  Being a disciple was not going to be easy.  You could not even say goodbye to your family.  Once you got started on your plow, there was no looking back.  Everything was centered on the kingdom of God.  Nothing else counted.  Do you often turn away from Jesus?

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A true family member hears and does the word (Lk 8:21-8:21)

“But Jesus said to them.

‘My mother

And my brothers

Are those

Who hear the word

Of God

And do it.’”

 

ὁ δὲ ἀποκριθεὶς εἶπεν πρὸς αὐτούς Μήτηρ μου καὶ ἀδελφοί μου οὗτοί εἰσιν οἱ τὸν λόγον τοῦ Θεοῦ ἀκούοντες καὶ ποιοῦντες.

 

Luke indicated that Jesus replied to them (ὁ δὲ ἀποκριθεὶς εἶπεν πρὸς αὐτούς) that his mother (Μήτηρ μου) and his brothers (καὶ ἀδελφοί μου) were those who heard (οὗτοί εἰσιν οἱ…ἀκούοντες) the word of God (τὸν λόγον τοῦ Θεοῦ) and did it (καὶ ποιοῦντες).  Mark, chapter 3:33-35, and Matthew, chapter 12:48-50, have something similar, but Matthew was closer to Mark.  Luke had this simple concluding statement that sounded like a repudiation of his biological family.  Mark said that Jesus made a distinction between his biological family and his new spiritual family, as he replied to the person who told him about his relatives.  He asked him who his mother was and who were his brothers?  He looked at those who were sitting around him in a circle.  Then he said that they were his mother and his brothers.  Anyone who did the will of God, would be his brother, his sister, and his mother.  Matthew also said that Jesus asked them who his mother was and who his brothers were?  He stretched out his hand pointing to his disciples and said that they were his mother and his brothers.  Anyone who did the will of his Father in heaven would be his brother, his sister, and his mother.  This idea of a new faith family was common among many religious groups, since their fellow believers were now their new family.  No longer was a biological family important, because there was now a new spiritual family of Jesus believers.  How important is your biological family to you?

Jesus cures the leprosy (Lk 5:13-5:13)

“Then Jesus

Stretched out

His hand.

He touched

The leper.

He said.

‘I do choose!

Be made clean!’

Immediately,

The leprosy

Left him.”

 

καὶ ἐκτείνας τὴν χεῖρα ἥψατο αὐτοῦ λέγων Θέλω, καθαρίσθητι· καὶ εὐθέως ἡ λέπρα ἀπῆλθεν ἀπ’ αὐτοῦ.

 

Luke said that Jesus stretched out his hand (καὶ ἐκτείνας τὴν χεῖρα).  He touched the leper (ἥψατο αὐτοῦ).  He said that he had chosen (λέγων Θέλω) to make him clean (καθαρίσθητι).  Immediately (καὶ εὐθέως), the leprosy left or went out of him (ἡ λέπρα ἀπῆλθεν ἀπ’ αὐτοῦ).  This leper healing story can also be found in Mark, chapter 1:42, and Matthew, chapter 8:3.  Mark said that Jesus was moved with pity or compassion, which was not mentioned here in Luke.  However, the healing was the same.  Jesus stretched out his hand and touched the leper, since it was not against Jewish law to touch a leper.  Then Jesus said that he wanted to cleanse the leper.  Immediately, the leprosy went away, exactly the same as here.  This leper became clean.  Thus, there was a prophetic cleansing of a leper, because Jesus had this healing touch.

The harvest is coming (Lk 3:17-3:17)

“His winnowing fork

Is in his hand,

To clear

His threshing floors.

He will gather

The wheat

Into his granary.

But he will burn

The chaff

With an unquenchable fire.”

 

οὗ τὸ πτύον ἐν τῇ χειρὶ αὐτοῦ διακαθᾶραι τὴν ἅλωνα αὐτοῦ καὶ συναγαγεῖν τὸν σῖτον εἰς τὴν ἀποθήκην αὐτοῦ, τὸ δὲ ἄχυρον κατακαύσει πυρὶ ἀσβέστῳ.

 

Luke has John give this menacing saying that can be found almost word for word in Matthew, chapter 3:12.  Thus, this might be a Q source saying, since it is not found in Mark or JohnLuke has God, the Lord, as a farmer at harvest time.  Luke had John say that this famer has his winnowing fork ready in his hand (οὗ τὸ πτύον ἐν τῇ χειρὶ αὐτοῦ).  He was going to clear the threshing floors (διακαθᾶραι τὴν ἅλωνα αὐτοῦ).  He was going to gather his wheat into his barn or granary (καὶ συναγαγεῖν τὸν σῖτον εἰς τὴν ἀποθήκην αὐτοῦ).  He would then burn up the leftover chaff (τὸ δὲ ἄχυρον κατακαύσει) with an everlasting or unquenchable fire (πυρὶ ἀσβέστῳ).  This last phrase was a little different than that of Matthew.  Nevertheless, this was a clear warning against the useless ones, who like chaff, would burn in an unstoppable fire.

Someone cuts off the ear of the high priest’s slave (Mt 26:51-26:51)

“All at once,

One of those

With Jesus

Put his hand

On his sword.

He drew it.

He struck

The slave

Of the high priest.

He cut off

His ear.”

 

καὶ ἰδοὺ εἷς τῶν μετὰ Ἰησοῦ ἐκτείνας τὴν χεῖρα ἀπέσπασεν τὴν μάχαιραν αὐτοῦ, καὶ πατάξας τὸν δοῦλον τοῦ ἀρχιερέως ἀφεῖλεν αὐτοῦ τὸ ὠτίον.

 

This is almost word for word in Mark, chapter 14:47.  In Luke, chapter 22:49-50, there was a little discussion before the cutting off of the ear and then Jesus healed the ear that was hurt.  John, chapter 18:51, explicitly named Peter, not one of those with Jesus, as the one who cut off the ear of the high priest’s slave.  In fact, the slave has the name of Malchus.  Both Mark and Matthew said that one of these unnamed disciples with Jesus (καὶ ἰδοὺ εἷς τῶν μετὰ Ἰησοῦ) stretched out his hand (ἐκτείνας τὴν χεῖρα).  He then drew his sword (ἀπέσπασεν τὴν μάχαιραν αὐτοῦ) and struck a slave of the high priest (καὶ πατάξας τὸν δοῦλον τοῦ ἀρχιερέως).  He cut his ear off (ἀφεῖλεν αὐτοῦ τὸ ὠτίον).  Obviously, this could have started a major battle here.

The new family (Mt 12:48-12:50)

“But Jesus replied

To the one

Who told him this.

‘Who is my mother?

Who are my brothers?’

Pointing to his disciples,

He said.

‘Here is my mother!

Here are my brothers!

Whoever does the will

Of my Father in heaven

Is my brother.

She is my sister!

She is my mother!’”

 

ὁ δὲ ἀποκριθεὶς εἶπεν τῷ λέγοντι αὐτῷ Τίς ἐστιν ἡ μήτηρ μου, καὶ τίνες εἰσὶν οἱ ἀδελφοί μου;

καὶ ἐκτείνας τὴν χεῖρα αὐτοῦ ἐπὶ τοὺς μαθητὰς αὐτοῦ εἶπεν Ἰδοὺ ἡ μήτηρ μου καὶ οἱ ἀδελφοί μου·

ὅστις γὰρ ἂν ποιήσῃ τὸ θέλημα τοῦ Πατρός μου τοῦ ἐν οὐρανοῖς, αὐτός μου ἀδελφὸς καὶ ἀδελφὴ καὶ μήτηρ ἐστίν.

 

Luke, chapter 8:21, and Mark, chapter 3:33-35, have something similar, but Matthew is closer to Mark.  Jesus made a distinction between his biological family and his new spiritual family.  Jesus replied to the person who told him about his relatives (ὁ δὲ ἀποκριθεὶς εἶπεν τῷ λέγοντι αὐτῷ).  He asked him who his mother was and who his brothers were (Τίς ἐστιν ἡ μήτηρ μου, καὶ τίνες εἰσὶν οἱ ἀδελφοί μου).  He stretched out his hand pointing to his disciples (καὶ ἐκτείνας τὴν χεῖρα αὐτοῦ ἐπὶ τοὺς μαθητὰς αὐτοῦ).  He said that they were his mother and his brothers (εἶπεν Ἰδοὺ ἡ μήτηρ μου καὶ οἱ ἀδελφοί μου).  Anyone who did the will of his Father in heaven (ὅστις γὰρ ἂν ποιήσῃ τὸ θέλημα τοῦ Πατρός μου τοῦ ἐν οὐρανοῖς) would be his brother (αὐτός μου ἀδελφὸς), his sister (καὶ ἀδελφὴ), and his mother (καὶ μήτηρ ἐστίν).  No longer was a biological family important, because there was now a new spiritual faith family of Jesus believers.

Curing the leper (Mt 8:3-8:3)

“Jesus stretched out

His hand.

He touched

The leper.

Saying.

‘I will!

Be made clean!’

Immediately,

His leprosy was cleansed.”

 

καὶ ἐκτείνας τὴν χεῖρα ἥψατο αὐτοῦ λέγων Θέλω, καθαρίσθητι. καὶ εὐθέως ἐκαθερίσθη αὐτοῦ ἡ λέπρα

 

This leper healing story can be found in Luke, chapter 5:13, and Mark, chapter 1:41-42, perhaps indicating Mark as the source.  For Matthew, this represents the first miracle of Jesus.  Jesus stretched out his hand (καὶ ἐκτείνας τὴν χεῖρα) and touched the leper (ἥψατο αὐτοῦ), since it was not against Jewish law to touch a leper.  Then he said that he willed (λέγων Θέλω) or wanted to cure the leper.  Jesus then told the leper to be clean (καθαρίσθητι).  Immediately (καὶ εὐθέως), the leper was cleansed (ἐκαθερίσθη αὐτοῦ ἡ λέπρα), as the leprosy went away.  This first miracle of Jesus was a prophetic cleansing of a leper, because Jesus had this healing touch.