Neighbors are happy (Lk 1:58-1:58)

“Her neighbors

And relatives

Heard

That the Lord

Had extolled Elizabeth.

He had shown

His great mercy

To her.

They rejoiced

With her.”

 

καὶ ἤκουσαν οἱ περίοικοι καὶ οἱ συγγενεῖς αὐτῆς ὅτι ἐμεγάλυνεν Κύριος τὸ ἔλεος αὐτοῦ μετ’ αὐτῆς, καὶ συνέχαιρον αὐτῇ.

 

Luke once again emphasized the normality of this birth.  Everyone was happy about the new baby boy.  Luke said that Elizabeth’s neighbors (οἱ περίοικοι) and relatives (καὶ οἱ συγγενεῖς) had heard (καὶ ἤκουσαν) that the Lord had extolled her (ὅτι ἐμεγάλυνεν Κύριος).  He had shown her great mercy (τὸ ἔλεος αὐτοῦ μετ’ αὐτῆς,) with this childbirth.  Thus, they all rejoiced with her (καὶ συνέχαιρον αὐτῇ).  It was and is quite common to think of childbirth as a gift from God.

 

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They were willing to given Judas some money (Mk 14:11-14:11)

“When the chief priests

Heard it,

They were greatly pleased.

They promised

To give him money.

Thus,

Judas began

To look for

An opportunity

To betray Jesus.”

 

οἱ δὲ ἀκούσαντες ἐχάρησαν καὶ ἐπηγγείλαντο αὐτῷ ἀργύριον δοῦναι. καὶ ἐζήτει πῶς αὐτὸν εὐκαίρως παραδοῖ.

 

This is similar to Matthew, chapter 26:15-16, and Luke, chapter 22:5-6, but only Matthew mentioned the exact amount of money, 30 silver pieces.  Mark said that when the chief priests heard Judas (οἱ δὲ ἀκούσαντες), they were pleased, happy, and rejoiced (ἐχάρησαν).  They promised to give him money (καὶ ἐπηγγείλαντο αὐτῷ ἀργύριον δοῦναι), with no exact amount mentioned here.  Judas then began to look for an opportunity to betray or hand over Jesus in a convenient manner (καὶ ἐζήτει πῶς αὐτὸν εὐκαίρως παραδοῖ).

The indictment of Edom (Ob 1:12-1:14)

“You should not

Have gloated

Over your brother

On the day of his misfortune!

You should not

Have rejoiced

Over the people of Judah

On the day of his misfortune!

You should not

Have boasted

On the day of distress!

You should not

Have entered

The gate of my people

On the day of their calamity!

You should not

Have joined in the gloating

Over Judah’s disaster

On the day of his calamity!

You should not

Have looted his goods

On the day of his calamity!

You should not

Have stood at crossings

To cut off his fugitives!

You should not

Have handed over

His survivors

On the day of distress!”

Yahweh, via Obadiah, listed the various things that Edom did on the day of the invasion of Jerusalem.  First, they gloated over their brother Judah.  Then they rejoiced at the problems of the people of Judah.  These Edomites even boasted and entered the gates of Jerusalem.  They joined with the others, as they looted the goods of the people in Jerusalem.  They kept others from escaping.  They even handed over the survivors to the foreign attackers.  They were really complicit in this attack on Jerusalem.

The desolate desert of Edom (Ezek 35:14-35:15)

Thus says Yahweh God!

‘As the whole earth

Rejoices,

I will make you desolate.

You rejoiced

Over the inheritance

Of the house of Israel,

Because it was desolate.

Thus,

I will deal

With you.

You shall be desolate!

Mount Seir!

All of Edom!

All of it!’

Then they shall know

That I am Yahweh.”

Yahweh God, via Ezekiel, said that the whole earth rejoiced because he was going to make Mount Seir a desolate desert. Just as the Edomites had rejoiced over the desolation of the house of Israel, now everyone would rejoice over the desolation of Mount Seir, the whole country of Edom, with everything in it. Finally, they would know that Yahweh was truly God.

The enemies of Jerusalem (Bar 4:30-4:35)

“Take courage!

O Jerusalem!

The one who named you

Will comfort you.

Wretched will be

Those who mistreated you!

They rejoiced at your fall.

Wretched will be

The cities

That your children

Served as slaves!

Wretched will be

The city

That received your offspring!

She rejoiced

At your fall.

She was glad

For your ruin.

Now she will be grieved

At her own desolation.

I will take away her pride

In her great population.

Her insolence

Will be turned to grief.

Fire will come upon her

from the Everlasting One

For many days.

For a long time,

She will be inhabited

By demons.”

Now there is a turn, as this author speaks directly to Jerusalem instead of Jerusalem herself complaining. Jerusalem was encouraged to be courageous. She would be comforted. However, those who mistreated her and rejoiced at her fall will be miserable. The cities where the children of Jerusalem served as slaves would be miserable also. The city of Babylon, that received the children of Jerusalem, rejoiced and was glad at the downfall and ruin of Jerusalem. Now they will be grieved at their own desolation. The pride of those people and their insolence will be turned to grief. The Everlasting One, not Yahweh, will bring fire upon it for many days. For a long time it will be inhabited by demons.

Numerical blessings (Sir 25:7-25:12)

“I can think of nine

Whom I should call blessed.

My tongue proclaims a tenth.

A blessed man can rejoice

In his children.

A blessed man lives

To see the downfall of his foes.

Happy the man

Who lives With a sensible wife.

Happy is the one

Who does not plow

With an ox and donkey together.

Happy is the one

Who does not sin with his tongue.

Happy is the one

Who has not served an inferior.

Happy is the one

Who finds a friend.

Happy is the one

Who speaks to attentive listeners.

How great is the one

Who finds wisdom!

But none is superior to the one

Who fears the Lord.

Fear of the Lord

Surpasses everything.

To whom can we compare

To the one who has it?

The fear of the Lord

Is the beginning of love

For him.

Faith is the beginning

Of clinging to him.”

Once again, Sirach has a numerical proverb. There are 9 kinds of blessed people and a 10th that is even better. He would consider you a blessed happy person if you rejoiced in your children (1). You would be blessed happy if you see your foes fail (2). You are blessed happy, if you live with a sensible wife (3). You are blessed happy, if you plow your field without mixing up your ox and your donkey (4). You should be blessed happy, if you never sin with your tongue (5). You should be blessed happy, if you never have to serve an inferior (6). You are blessed happy, if you have found a friend (7) and people willing to listen to you (8). However, you the great ones are blessed happy when you find wisdom (9). You are the people who fear the Lord (10), since that surpasses everything. Nothing can compare to you, the ones who have the fear of the Lord that is the beginning of love for the Lord. It is the beginning of faith in the Lord.

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Yahweh has done great things (Ps 126:1-126:3)

A song of ascents

“When Yahweh restored the fortunes of Zion,

We were like those who dream.

Then our mouth was filled with laughter.

Our tongue was filled with shouts of joy.

Then it was said among the nations.

‘Yahweh has done great things for them.’

Yahweh has done great things for us.

We rejoiced.”

Psalm 126 is another of these short pilgrimage songs or psalms of ascent. Once again, it is a short prayer for deliverance at the time of the return from captivity. When the Israelites under Ezra were restored to Jerusalem and Mount Zion, it was like a dream come true. Their mouths and tongues were filled with laughter and joy. Then the various countries said that Yahweh had done great things for them. The Israelites realized that Yahweh had done great things for them so that they rejoiced.