‘I have bought
Five yoke of oxen.
I am going
To try them out.
I pray you,
Accept my regrets!’”
καὶ ἕτερος εἶπεν Ζεύγη βοῶν ἠγόρασα πέντε, καὶ πορεύομαι δοκιμάσαι αὐτά· ἐρωτῶ σε, ἔχε με παρῃτημένον.
Luke uniquely had Jesus talk about another excuse. Jesus said that another person told the inviting slave (καὶ ἕτερος εἶπεν) that he had just purchased or bought 5 pair of oxen (Ζεύγη βοῶν ἠγόρασα πέντε). Luke was the only biblical writer to use the term Ζεύγη, meaning a pair, yoke, or team. This man was going to try them out (καὶ πορεύομαι δοκιμάσαι αὐτά). He too, politely (ἐρωτῶ σε) asked to be excused (ἔχε με παρῃτημένον). Matthew, chapter 22:6-7, instead of these individual excuses, had the king’s servants beat up. Thus, this king destroyed the original invited people. However, there was nothing like that here in Luke. Have you ever beat up people inviting you to a dinner or have you been respectful?
“But they all alike
To make excuses.
The first said to him.
‘I have bought
A piece of land.
I must go out
To see it.
Accept my regrets!”
καὶ ἤρξαντο ἀπὸ μιᾶς πάντες παραιτεῖσθαι. ὁ πρῶτος εἶπεν αὐτῷ Ἀγρὸν ἠγόρασα, καὶ ἔχω ἀνάγκην ἐξελθὼν ἰδεῖν αὐτόν· ἐρωτῶ σε, ἔχε με παρῃτημένον.
Luke indicated that Jesus said that they all began to make excuses, to excuse themselves (καὶ ἤρξαντο ἀπὸ μιᾶς πάντες παραιτεῖσθαι). The first one said to the slave (ὁ πρῶτος εἶπεν αὐτῷ) that he had just bought a piece of land (Ἀγρὸν ἠγόρασα). Thus, he had to go out to see it (καὶ ἔχω ἀνάγκην ἐξελθὼν ἰδεῖν αὐτόν). Therefore, he politely (ἐρωτῶ σε) wanted to be excused from going to the banquet (ἔχε με παρῃτημένον). Matthew, chapter 22:3-5, said that they would not come or did not wish to come (καὶ οὐκ ἤθελον ἐλθεῖν), without giving excuses. Now, this was a problem. They have refused an invitation to the wedding banquet of God, the Father, the king. He had sent his slaves, the prophets or the apostles, to call them, but they still did not want to come to the wedding feast. In fact, Matthew said that the invitees made light of these inviting slaves. They disregarded or disrespected (οἱ δὲ ἀμελήσαντες) the invitation. They simply went on with their daily lives. They went (ἀπῆλθον) either to their own farm field (ὃς μὲν εἰς τὸν ἴδιον ἀγρόν), or to their trading business (ὃς δὲ ἐπὶ τὴν ἐμπορίαν αὐτοῦ). They were too busy to go to a wedding feast. Have you ever been too busy to go to a wedding reception?
“If in bitterness of soul,
Some should curse you,
Their Creator will hear their prayer.
Endear yourself to the congregation.
Bow your head low to the great.
Give a hearing to the poor.
Return their greeting politely.
Rescue the oppressed from the oppressor.
Do not be hesitant in giving a verdict.
Be like a father to orphans.
Be like a husband to their mother.
You will then be like a son of the Most High.
He will love you more than does your mother.”
Now it may happen, that someone who is bitter might curse you. Let the Creator God judge you. Fit into your community. Bow your head to the people in charge. Listen to the poor. Greet them politely. Rescue those who are being abused. Do not be afraid to make a judgment. Be like a father to orphans and a husband to widows. If you do these things, you will be like a son of the Most High God. God, the Creator, will love you more than your mother does. This is a strong demand for a civil society.