Free from infirmity (Lk 13:12-13:12)

“When Jesus saw her,

He called her over.

He said to her.

‘Woman!

You are set free

From your ailment.’”

 

ἰδὼν δὲ αὐτὴν ὁ Ἰησοῦς προσεφώνησεν καὶ εἶπεν αὐτῇ Γύναι, ἀπολέλυσαι τῆς ἀσθενείας σου,

 

Luke uniquely said that Jesus saw her (ἰδὼν δὲ αὐτὴν).  He then called her over near to him (ὁ Ἰησοῦς προσεφώνησεν).  He then said to her (καὶ εἶπεν αὐτῇ), calling her woman (Γύναι), that she would be set free from her ailment or sickness (ἀπολέλυσαι τῆς ἀσθενείας σου).  Obviously, Jesus would have noticed this bent over lady, which is often common among older men and women because of osteoporosis or weakening of the backbone.  He called her over to cure her of her infirmity.  He was going to see her free from the evil spirit that had caused this problem.  Have you ever seen a person recover from being bent over?

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They will be miracle workers (Mk 16:18-16:18)

“They will pick up

Snakes

In their hands.

If they drink

Any deadly thing,

It will not hurt them.

They will lay

Their hands

On the sick.

They will recover.”

 

ὄφεις ἀροῦσιν κἂν θανάσιμόν τι πίωσιν οὐ μὴ αὐτοὺς βλάψῃ, ἐπὶ ἀρρώστους χεῖρας ἐπιθήσουσιν καὶ καλῶς ἕξουσιν.

 

This is another unique section of this longer ending to Mark.  Jesus was reminding his followers of what would happen to them.  They would have special powers.  They would be able to pick up snakes in their hands (ὄφεις ἀροῦσιν).  They would be able to drink any deadly drink (κἂν θανάσιμόν τι πίωσιν), without it hurting them (οὐ μὴ αὐτοὺς βλάψῃ).  They would be able to lay their hands-on sick people (ἐπὶ ἀρρώστους χεῖρας ἐπιθήσουσιν) and they would recover or become well again (καὶ καλῶς ἕξουσιν).  They would be like miracle workers or super heroes with special powers.

Textual criticism

Textual criticism is the study of the variants in the original Hebrew or Greek texts.  This textual criticism attempts to establish the original wording of the biblical texts.  There is an attempt to establish the possible formation and transmission of the texts themselves.  All the original manuscripts of the Bible have been lost.  Thus, the goal of textual criticism is to recover the best critical text possible, given the circumstances of today.  Most modern translations are based on various Hebrew and Greek critical texts.  These ancient texts were copied by hand with some possible human errors.  Many kinds of copying errors have been categorized and classified.  Textual criticism is known as lower criticism, because it is the foundation for all of the other kinds of critical study.

The goat attacked the ram (Dan 8:6-8:7)

“The goat came toward

The ram

With the two horns,

That I had seen

Standing

Beside the river.

It ran at him

With a savage force.

I saw it

Approaching

The ram.

The goat was enraged

Against it.

The goat struck

The ram,

Breaking

Its two horns.

The ram

Did not have power

To withstand it.

The goat threw

The ram down

To the ground.

The goat trampled

Upon the ram.

There was no one

Who could rescue

The ram

From its power.”

Next Daniel witnessed the attack of the goat against the ram. The goat was angry, so that it struck the ram, breaking its 2 horns. Here is an indication that Alexander the Great, the goat, had attacked the Persians and Medes, the 2-horned ram. The ram could not recover, as the goat threw the ram to the ground and trampled over it. There was no one there to rescue the ram from the power of this goat.

Future restoration (Jer 33:6-33:9)

“I going to bring

Recovery

With healing.

I will heal them.

I will reveal to them

Abundance of prosperity

With security.

I will restore

The fortunes of Judah,

The fortunes of Israel.

I will rebuild them

As they were at first.

I will cleanse them

From all the guilt

Of their sin

Against me.

I will forgive

All the guilt

Of their sin

With their rebellion

Against me.

This city shall be to me

A name of joy,

A praise,

As well as a glory

Before all the nations

Of the earth.

They shall hear

Of all the good

That I do for them.

They shall fear.

They shall tremble

Because of all the good,

As well as all the prosperity

I provide for it.”

Yahweh was going to heal Israel and Judah. He was going to help the city of Jerusalem to recover. They would have an abundance of prosperity and security in Jerusalem. Both the fortunes of the towns in Judah and among the northern Israelites would be rebuilt for them like it used to be. Yahweh was going to cleanse them from the guilt of all their sins against him. He was going to forgive their rebellion against him. Jerusalem would become a name of joy, praise, and glory for the whole world to see. Everyone would know about Jerusalem and the good that Yahweh had done for them. In fact, they would tremble and fear at all the good prosperity that he had provided for them. There were great days ahead.

The deadly sickness of King Hezekiah (Isa 38:1-38:1)

“In those days,

King Hezekiah became sick.

He was at the point of death.

The prophet Isaiah,

Son of Amoz,

Came to him.

Thus says Yahweh.

‘Set your house in order.

You shall die.

You shall not recover.’”

Once again, this is almost word for word from 2 Kings, chapter 20. There is some kind of vague time indication with “in those days.” This section may have preceded the invasion of King Sennacherib. King Hezekiah became so sick that he was dying. The prophet Isaiah came to him and told him that Yahweh had said that he should get his house in order because he was not going to recover, but rather die.

The return of the remnant (Isa 11:11-11:11)

“On that day,

Yahweh will extend his hand

Yet a second time.

He wanted to recover

The remnant that is left

Of his people,

From Assyria,

From Egypt,

From Pathros,

From Ethiopia,

From Elam,

From Shinar,

From Hamath,

And from the coastlands of the sea.”

In this ideal time, all the scattered Israelites would return from their Exile. Yahweh was going to extend his hand for a second time. The first time was the Exodus from Egypt. This time it is a call to recover the remnant from all over the place. Some of these places are easy to figure out. Assyria (present day Iraq), Egypt, and Ethiopia are easy to understand. Pathros was in upper Egypt. Elam is where current day Iran is. Shinar was in Babylon. Hamath was in Syria. The coastlands may have been the Aegean islands around present day Greece. Obviously, this was during the Exile or after it. It is interesting to note how many different places the Israelites were in Diaspora, so early in their history.