Will the Son of Man find faith on earth? (Lk 18:8-18:8)

“I tell you!

He will quickly

Grant justice

To them.

Nevertheless,

When the Son of Man

Comes,

Will he find faith

On earth?”

 

λέγω ὑμῖν ὅτι ποιήσει τὴν ἐκδίκησιν αὐτῶν ἐν τάχει. πλὴν ὁ Υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ἐλθὼν ἆρα εὑρήσει τὴν πίστιν ἐπὶ τῆς γῆς;

 

Luke is the only synoptic writer with this parable about the widow and the bad judge.  Luke indicated that Jesus concluded this story with a solemn pronouncement (λέγω ὑμῖν) that God will quickly grant justice to them (ὅτι ποιήσει τὴν ἐκδίκησιν αὐτῶν ἐν τάχει).  When the Son of Man comes (πλὴν ὁ Υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ἐλθὼν), will he find faith (ἆρα εὑρήσει τὴν πίστιν) on earth (ἐπὶ τῆς γῆς)?  What will the Son of Man find on the judgment day?  His justice will be quick.  The solution, be ready at all times.  Are you ready for the Son of Man to return?

 

Advertisements

Write your debt in half (Lk 16:6-16:6)

“The man answered.

‘A hundred jugs

Of olive oil.’

This manager

Said to him.

Take your bill!

Sit down quickly!

Make it fifty!’”

 

ὁ δὲ εἶπεν Ἑκατὸν βάτους ἐλαίου. ὁ δὲ εἶπεν αὐτῷ Δέξαι σου τὰ γράμματα καὶ καθίσας ταχέως γράψον πεντήκοντα

 

This parable story about the dishonest household manager or steward can only be found in Luke, not in any of the other gospel stories.  Luke indicated that Jesus said that this debtor answered (ὁ δὲ εἶπεν) that he owed a 100 jugs or baths of olive oil (Ἑκατὸν βάτους ἐλαίου).  Once again, Luke used a word that does not appear any other place in the biblical literature, βάτους, that means a bath, an Israelite liquid measure, between eight and nine gallons.  Thus, this unjust house manager said to this debtor (ὁ δὲ εἶπεν αὐτῷ) to take his bill (Δέξαι σου τὰ γράμματα).  Then sitting down, quickly change it to 50 (καὶ καθίσας ταχέως γράψον πεντήκοντα).  This would have been a 50% reduction from about 800 gallons of olive oil to 400 gallons.  That was a nice gesture.  Would his master and lord like that?  Have you ever tried to reduce your debt?

Dress him up! (Lk 15:22-15:22)

“But the father

Said to his slaves.

‘Quickly!

Bring out

The best robe!

Put it on him!

Put a ring

On his finger!

Put sandals

On his feet!’”

 

εἶπεν δὲ ὁ πατὴρ πρὸς τοὺς δούλους αὐτοῦ Ταχὺ ἐξενέγκατε στολὴν τὴν πρώτην καὶ ἐνδύσατε αὐτόν, καὶ δότε δακτύλιον εἰς τὴν χεῖρα αὐτοῦ καὶ ὑποδήματα εἰς τοὺς πόδας,

 

This long parable story about the prodigal son can only be found in Luke, not in any of the other gospel stories.  Luke indicated that Jesus said that the father said to his slaves (εἶπεν δὲ ὁ πατὴρ πρὸς τοὺς δούλους αὐτοῦ) that they were to quickly bring out the best robe (Ταχὺ ἐξενέγκατε στολὴν τὴν πρώτην).  They were to dress him with it (καὶ ἐνδύσατε αὐτόν).  Then they were to put a ring on his hand or finger (καὶ δότε δακτύλιον εἰς τὴν χεῖρα αὐτοῦ) and sandals on his feet (καὶ ὑποδήματα εἰς τοὺς πόδας).  Apparently, there were some slaves (δούλους) on this farm, besides the hired hands.  The prodigal’s son father wanted him dressed up with a new robe, ring, and sandals.  He no longer would be the poor prodigal lost sinner.  Do you like to dress up?

The younger son squanders his property (Lk 15:13-15:13)

“A few days later,

The younger son

Gathered all he had.

He traveled

To a distant country.

There he squandered

His property

In dissolute living.”

 

καὶ μετ’ οὐ πολλὰς ἡμέρας συναγαγὼν πάντα ὁ νεώτερος υἱὸς ἀπεδήμησεν εἰς χώραν μακράν, καὶ ἐκεῖ διεσκόρπισεν τὴν οὐσίαν αὐτοῦ ζῶν ἀσώτως.

 

This long parable story about the 2 sons can only be found in Luke, not in any of the other gospel stories.  Luke indicated that Jesus said that a few days later or not too many days later (καὶ μετ’ οὐ πολλὰς ἡμέρας), this younger son gathered all that he had (συναγαγὼν πάντα ὁ νεώτερος υἱὸς), without any indication of how much stuff he actually had.  He then traveled or went away to a distant country (ἀπεδήμησεν εἰς χώραν μακράν), since he did not stay close to home.  There he squandered his property in dissolute living (καὶ ἐκεῖ διεσκόρπισεν τὴν οὐσίαν αὐτοῦ ζῶν ἀσώτως).  Luke was the only biblical writer to use this term ἀσώτως that means prodigal or extravagantly wasteful, because of loose living in a debauched, profligate lifestyle.  Thus, this story came to be known as the prodigal son.  In other words, this young son took off for a Las Vegas kind of city in a faraway place.  There he spent his new-found inheritance very quickly in a number of stupid ways.  It is not clear how he was able to convert his inheritance property into cash, but presumably he did.  Have you ever thought about running away and spending a lot of money foolishly?

Settle your case (Lk 12:58-12:58)

“Thus,

When you go

Before a magistrate,

With your accuser,

On the way there,

Make an effort

To settle the case.

Otherwise,

You may be dragged

Before the judge.

The judge

Might hand you over

To the officer.

The officer might

Throw you in prison.”

 

ὡς γὰρ ὑπάγεις μετὰ τοῦ ἀντιδίκου σου ἐπ’ ἄρχοντα, ἐν τῇ ὁδῷ δὸς ἐργασίαν ἀπηλλάχθαι ἀπ’ αὐτοῦ, μή ποτε κατασύρῃ σε πρὸς τὸν κριτήν, καὶ ὁ κριτής σε παραδώσει τῷ πράκτορι, καὶ ὁ πράκτωρ σε βαλεῖ εἰς φυλακήν.

 

Luke indicated that Jesus said that if they were to go (ὡς γὰρ ὑπάγεις) before a magistrate (π’ ἄρχοντα), with their accuser or advisory (μετὰ τοῦ ἀντιδίκου σου), they should make an effort to settle the case (δὸς ἐργασίαν ἀπηλλάχθαι ἀπ’ αὐτοῦ) on the way there (ἐν τῇ ὁδῷ).  Otherwise, they may be dragged before the judge (μή ποτε κατασύρῃ σε πρὸς τὸν κριτήν).  Then the judge might hand them over to the officer (καὶ ὁ κριτής σε παραδώσει τῷ πράκτορι), who might throw them in prison (καὶ ὁ πράκτωρ σε βαλεῖ εἰς φυλακήν).  Matthew, chapter 5:25, had some similar common-sense advice that seems to come from the common Q source.  Jesus said that if they had a court case, try to settle it quickly before they got to court with the person that they owed money to.  They should be agreeable to their accuser (ἴσθι εὐνοῶν τῷ ἀντιδίκῳ σου).  They should try to solve this case with their accuser on the way to court (ἕως ὅτου εἶ μετ’ αὐτοῦ ἐν τῇ ὁδῷ).  Otherwise, this accuser would turn them over to a judge (μή ποτέ σε παραδῷ ὁ ἀντίδικος τῷ κριτῇ), who would in turn send them to a guard (καὶ ὁ κριτὴς τῷ ὑπηρέτῃ), who would throw them into jail or a prison (καὶ εἰς φυλακὴν βληθήσῃ).  Try to settle your cases out of court, because you could lose in court.  Have you ever had a court case that was difficult?

Fire on earth (Lk 12:49-12:49)

“I came

To bring fire

To the earth.

How I wish

That it was

Already kindled!”

 

Πῦρ ἦλθον βαλεῖν ἐπὶ τὴν γῆν, καὶ τί θέλω εἰ ἤδη ἀνήφθη.

 

Luke uniquely indicated that Jesus said that he came to bring or cast fire or judgment (Πῦρ ἦλθον βαλεῖν) to the earth (ἐπὶ τὴν γῆν).  Jesus wished (καὶ τί θέλω) that this fire had already started or kindled (εἰ ἤδη ἀνήφθη).  It appeared that Jesus wanted the judgment day to come sooner.  He wanted the judgment of fire to come quickly.  Fire was also a symbol of the Holy Spirit, purification, or presence of his love.  Jesus wanted things to get going.  Are you anxious about things to start?

The seeds on the rock (Lk 8:6-8:6)

“Some seeds fell

On a rock.

As they grew up,

They withered away,

Because of no moisture.”

 

καὶ ἕτερον κατέπεσεν ἐπὶ τὴν πέτραν, καὶ φυὲν ἐξηράνθη διὰ τὸ μὴ ἔχειν ἰκμάδα.

 

This sower parable about the seeds on rocky ground can be found in all 3 synoptic gospels, Matthew, chapter 13:5, Mark, chapter 4:5, and Luke here, with Matthew closer to Mark, almost word for word.  Luke indicated that Jesus said that some seeds fell on a rock (καὶ ἕτερον κατέπεσεν ἐπὶ τὴν πέτραν).  As these seeds grew and sprung up (καὶ φυὲν), they withered away (ἐξηράνθη), because they had no moisture (διὰ τὸ μὴ ἔχειν ἰκμάδα).  Matthew and Mark had a more elaborate description about these unsuccessful seeds.  They said that this second group of seeds fell on rocky ground that did not have much soil.  Thus, the seeds sprang up quickly, even though they did not have much soil depth.  However, they were scorched when the sun rose and withered them up, because they did not have good solid roots.  Do you have good roots?