Jesus meets the blind beggar (Lk 18:40-18:40)

“Jesus stood still.

He ordered

The man

To be brought

To him.”

 

σταθεὶς δὲ ὁ Ἰησοῦς ἐκέλευσεν αὐτὸν ἀχθῆναι πρὸς αὐτόν.

 

Luke indicated that Jesus stood still (σταθεὶς δὲ).  He ordered them (ἐκέλευσεν αὐτὸν) to bring that blind man to him (ἀχθῆναι πρὸς αὐτόν).  Both Mark, chapter 10:49, and Matthew, chapter 20:32, had something similar.  Mark said that Jesus stopped or stood still (καὶ στὰς ὁ Ἰησοῦς) when he heard all this noise.  In a saying that is unique to Mark, Jesus then said (εἶπεν) to his disciples that they should call Bartimaeus to him (Φωνήσατε αὐτόν).  Then Jesus’ disciples called this blind man (καὶ φωνοῦσιν τὸν τυφλὸν).  They told him to have courage or take heart (λέγοντες αὐτῷ Θάρσει) and get up (ἔγειρε,) because Jesus was calling him (φωνεῖ σε).  Matthew simply stated that Jesus stopped or stood still (καὶ στὰς ὁ Ἰησοῦς) when he heard all this noise.  In all three synoptics, Jesus stopped in his tracks and wanted to see this blind man or men who were calling out to him.  Do you stop when someone calls out to you?

 

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Jesus calls the blind man (Mk 10:49-10:49)

“Jesus stood still.

He said.

‘Call him here!’

They called

The blind man.

They said to him.

‘Take heart!

Get up!

He is calling you.’”

 

καὶ στὰς ὁ Ἰησοῦς εἶπεν Φωνήσατε αὐτόν. καὶ φωνοῦσιν τὸν τυφλὸν λέγοντες αὐτῷ Θάρσει, ἔγειρε, φωνεῖ σε.

 

Both Matthew, chapter 20:32, and Luke, chapter 18:40, have something similar.  Mark said that Jesus stopped or stood still (καὶ στὰς ὁ Ἰησοῦς) when he heard all this noise, since he seemed to stop in his tracks.  In a saying that is unique to Mark, Jesus then said (εἶπεν) to his disciples that they should call Bartimaeus to him (Φωνήσατε αὐτόν).  Then Jesus’ disciples called this blind man (καὶ φωνοῦσιν τὸν τυφλὸν).  They told him to have courage or take heart (λέγοντες αὐτῷ Θάρσει) and get up (ἔγειρε,) because Jesus was calling him (φωνεῖ σε).

Against the Temple worship (Am 5:21-5:24)

“I hate your festivals!

I despise your festivals!

I take no delight

In your solemn assemblies!

Even though you offer me

Your burnt offerings,

Your grain offerings,

I will not accept them.

I will not look upon

The peace offerings

Of your fatted animals.

Take away from me

The noise of your songs.

I will not listen

To the melody

Of your harps.

But let justice

Roll down

Like water.

Let righteousness be

Like an ever-flowing stream.”

Amos has Yahweh reject the Temple cultic worship side of Israelite life in very strong terms. Yahweh hated and despised the religious festivals that were part of Temple worship. Neither did Yahweh take any delight in their solemn assemblies. Yahweh was not going to accept their burnt offerings and grain offerings. He was not going to even look at their peace offerings of fat animals. He wanted them to take away the noise of their chants and songs, since he was not going to listen to their melodic harps. Instead, he wanted justice to roll down from the hills like gushing water. He wanted righteousness to be like a continual flowing stream. Justice not worship was his cry, a theme that Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr, (1929-1968) often mentioned, as he wanted justice to roll down from the hills like running water.

The day of destruction for the Philistines (Jer 47:3-47:4)

“At the noise

Of the stamping

Of the hoofs

Of his stallions,

At the clatter

Of his chariots,

At the rumbling

Of their wheels,

The parents do not

Look back

For children.

Their hands are so feeble.

The day is coming

To destroy

All the Philistines.

They will be cut off

From Tyre and Sidon,

From every helper

That remains.

Yahweh is destroying

The Philistines,

The remnant

Of the coastland

Of Caphtor.”

The Philistines were going to hear the hoofs of the stallions of these invaders. They would hear the noise of the rumbling chariot wheels. Parents would not turn back to save their children, because their own hands would be too weak. The Philistines would be destroyed, since they were cut off from any help from the Phoenician cities of Tyre and Sidon. Yahweh was going to destroy the remnant of the coastal people, who may have come from the island of Caphtor or Crete.

Thanksgiving prayer (Isa 25:1-25:5)

“O Yahweh!

You are my God!

I will exalt you!

I will praise your name!

You have done wonderful things,

Plans formed of old,

Faithful and sure.

You have made the city a heap.

The fortified city has become a ruin.

The palace of aliens

Is a city no more.

It will never be rebuilt.

Therefore strong people

Will glorify you.

Cities of ruthless nations

Will fear you.

You have been a refuge

To the poor,

To the needy in their distress.

You have been a shelter

From the rainstorm.

You have been a shade

From the heat.

The blast of the ruthless was

Like a winter rainstorm.

The noise of aliens was

Like heat in a dry place.

You subdued the heat

With the shade of clouds.                                                        

The song of the ruthless was stilled.”

Isaiah gives thanks and praise to Yahweh because he has done wonderful faithful and sure things from of old as there are echoes of the acrostic Psalm 145. Then there is a turn to an unnamed ruined fortified city, where the palace of the aliens or foreigners was destroyed, never to be rebuilt again. There is no indication where this city was. Some people will glorify Yahweh, while other ruthless people will fear him. Yahweh has been a refuge to the poor and the needy in their time of distress. Yahweh was their shelter against the ruthless winter rainstorm and a shade in the hot sunny days against the noise of the aliens or foreigners. Yahweh was able to subdue the heat with his shady clouds. He was able to still the song of the ruthless. Thus Yahweh was their protector against the rain and the heat of ruthless people.

Cry for help to God (Ps 55:1-55:3)

To the choirmaster leader with stringed instruments, a Maskil of David

“Give ear to my prayer!

O God!

Do not hide yourself from my supplication!

Attend to me!

Answer me!

I am troubled in my complaint.

I am distraught,

By the noise of the enemy,

Because of the clamor of the wicked,

They bring trouble upon me.

In anger,

They cherish enmity against me.”

Psalm 55 is a prayer of David.  He felt that he was being persecuted and betrayed.  Once again this is a choral psalm with stringed instruments attributed to David.  David wanted God to hear his prayer and not hide from him.  He wanted an answer right away.  He was in trouble and distraught because of his enemies, a common theme of these psalms.  The wicked enemies were out to get him.  He was going to call on God to help him.

Sing praises to Yahweh (Ps 47:5-47:6)

“God has gone up with a shout.

Yahweh has gone up

With the sound of a trumpet.

Sing praises to God!

Sing praises!

Sing praises to our King!

Sing praises!”

In case you missed the point, “sing praises to God.” This refrain is repeated 4 times. There must be noise. There were shouts and at least a trumpet. They were to sing praises to God, the King, Yahweh. This psalm may have been used in the transport of the Ark of the Covenant.