“When his time
Of liturgical service
To his home.”
καὶ ἐγένετο ὡς ἐπλήσθησαν αἱ ἡμέραι τῆς λειτουργίας αὐτοῦ, ἀπῆλθεν εἰς τὸν οἶκον αὐτοῦ.
Luke remarked that Zechariah had fulfilled his time or days (καὶ ἐγένετο ὡς ἐπλήσθησαν αἱ ἡμέραι) of priestly Levite liturgical service (τῆς λειτουργίας αὐτοῦ) at the Jerusalem Temple. As his two-week duty was over, he went home (ἀπῆλθεν εἰς τὸν οἶκον αὐτοῦ). There was nothing strange about this. Obviously, Zechariah did not live at the Temple, since his home was elsewhere.
To set down
An orderly account
Of the events
That have been fulfilled
Ἐπειδήπερ πολλοὶ ἐπεχείρησαν ἀνατάξασθαι διήγησιν περὶ τῶν πεπληροφορημένων ἐν ἡμῖν πραγμάτων,
Luke clearly set out his goals in writing this gospel, much like the other historical Hellenistic works of his time. Although the prologue was one long Greek sentence, it has been divided up into verses. Matthew, chapter 1:1, called his work a book (Βίβλος), but the 1st chapter was about the genealogy of Jesus, or more precisely Joseph. Mark was the only one to call his work a gospel (τοῦ εὐαγγελίου), or more precisely, the beginning of a gospel (Ἀρχὴ τοῦ εὐαγγελίου). Luke admitted that many people had already tried to write a successful orderly account or a narrative (Ἐπειδήπερ πολλοὶ ἐπεχείρησαν ἀνατάξασθαι διήγησιν) about the events and things that had happened or been accomplished or fulfilled among them (περὶ τῶν πεπληροφορημένων ἐν ἡμῖν πραγμάτων), the early Christians. Luke clearly stated that he was not the first one to write about Jesus and the early Christians. He was going to rely on others for his orderly account or narrative about the accomplishments of Jesus.
“A potter kneads the soft earth.
He laboriously molds each vessel for our service.
He fashions out of the same clay
Both the vessels that serve clean uses
As well as those for contrary uses.
He makes all alike.
But which shall be the use of each of them?
The worker in clay decides.
With misspent toil,
These workers form a futile god
From the same clay.
These mortals were made of earth a short time before.
After a little while,
They go to the earth
From which all mortals are taken.
When the time comes,
They return the souls that were borrowed.”
The potter makes items from clay. Thus he performs a service to society by making things that for everyday usage. Some items are for good use and others are not. He must decide whether to spend his time on good uses or making futile gods of clay (κακόμοχθος θεὸν). He must have forgotten that he too was made of clay a short time ago. He, too, will return to the earth (γῆς) when his soul (τῆς ψυχῆς) separates from his mortal body. This concept of body and soul shows the influence of Greek philosophy since the body merely borrowed the soul.