Luke indicated that Jesus said to this blind beggar (καὶ ὁ Ἰησοῦς εἶπεν αὐτῷ) that he should receive his sight (Ἀνάβλεψον), because his faith (ἡ πίστις σου) had saved him (ἡ πίστις σου). Both Matthew, chapter 20:34, and Mark, chapter 10:52, are similar. Matthew said that Jesus was moved with compassion and pity on both blind men (σπλαγχνισθεὶς δὲ), so that he touched their eyes (ὁ Ἰησοῦς ἥψατο τῶν ὀμμάτων αὐτῶν). Immediately (καὶ εὐθέως), they regained their sight (ἀνέβλεψαν) and followed him (καὶ ἠκολούθησαν αὐτῷ). Mark, like Luke, did not mention compassion or pity. Neither did Jesus touch his eyes. Instead, Mark indicated that Jesus told Bartimaeus to go (καὶ ὁ Ἰησοῦς εἶπεν αὐτῷ Ὕπαγε), because his faith had healed him (ἡ πίστις σου σέσωκέν σε). Does faith play an important role in your life?
Luke had a unique question from Peter. Peter asked Jesus (Εἶπεν δὲ ὁ Πέτρος), calling him Lord (Κύριε). Was he about to tell this parable (τὴν παραβολὴν ταύτην λέγεις) for them (πρὸς ἡμᾶς) or for everyone (ἢ καὶ πρὸς πάντας)? There seemed to be some confusion among the apostles about the role of these parables. Were they for everyone or just for his disciples? Do you like the parables of Jesus?
Luke said that Jesus became aware of their inner heart thoughts (ὁ δὲ Ἰησοῦς εἰδὼς τὸν διαλογισμὸν τῆς καρδίας αὐτῶν). He took a little child (ἐπιλαβόμενος παιδίον). He put this child by his side (ἔστησεν αὐτὸ παρ’ ἑαυτῷ). This talk about Jesus and the little child can also be found in Matthew, chapter 18:2, as well as Mark, chapters 9:36, with some changes. Mark said that Jesus took a little child. He then placed this little child in the middle or among his disciples. He held the child in his arms and then he spoke to his apostles. Matthew indicated that Jesus put an emphasis on becoming like little children to enter the kingdom of heaven. Jesus called or summoned a little child. He placed this little child in the middle of his disciples. Then he made a solemn proclamation that they had to change or convert to become like little children. Otherwise, they would never enter the kingdom of heaven Whoever became humble like this little child in their midst, would be the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. The greatest in heaven would be the simple humble little children or those who acted like children, without power and depending on other people. What do you think the role of children should be?
The role of the Holy Spirit after the baptism of Jesus was very important. Matthew, chapter 3:16, Mark, chapter 1:10, and John, chapter 1:32, are almost the same as here. Luke said that the Holy Spirit (τὸ Πνεῦμα τὸ Ἅγιον) descended (καὶ καταβῆναι) upon Jesus (ἐπ’ αὐτόν) in a bodily form (σωματικῷ εἴδει), like a dove (ὡς περιστερὰν). John did not mention a dove, but he said that John the Baptist saw the Holy Spirit descend and remain on Jesus. In Matthew and Mark, Jesus saw the Holy Spirit as a dove descend on him. This all took place after the baptism itself. Just as the dove after the great flood in Genesis, chapter 8:8-12, heralded a new age, so too Jesus would preach the good news in this new age. With his prophetic vocation, Jesus had the power to begin his public ministry of healing and exorcising. The later concept of the anointing of Jesus with the Spirit referred to this action of the dove, after his baptism in the Jordan River. There was a clear distinction between the baptism of Jesus himself, and the specific dove bestowal of the Spirit that followed. Despite the fact that there was no indication of any real anointing in any of these baptismal accounts of Jesus, the coming of the Spirit, in the form of a dove, was considered a symbolic anointing of Jesus within the Judaic prophetic line. This incident functioned as the basis for an understanding of Jesus’ metaphorical anointing to become “the anointed one,” “Christ.” This symbolic metaphorical anointing action gathered many of the Hebrew bible strands of a messianic king, a sacerdotal high priest, a servant, and a prophet into this one event. Within this process, the messianic time began with a pre-figuration of what was going to take place at the later Pentecost event, when the fullness of the Spirit came to all the followers of Jesus.
This is similar to Matthew, chapter 3:11, Mark, chapter 1:8, and John, chapter 1:33. Luke indicated that John said that this mightier one to come was going to baptize them with the Holy Spirit (αὐτὸς ὑμᾶς βαπτίσει ἐν Πνεύματι Ἁγίῳ) and fire (καὶ πυρί). Matthew and Luke, mentioned fire with the Holy Spirit, but Mark did not. The role of the Holy Spirit seemed important because he was going to use purifying fire in the baptismal washing. There was a clear difference between the baptism of John with water for repentance and that of the later Christians with or in the Holy Spirit. Perhaps there was some doubt among the early followers of Jesus about the role of baptism.
Luke further set the historical background, as he indicated that there were two Jewish high priests (ἐπὶ ἀρχιερέως) Annas (Ἄννα) and Caiaphas (καὶ Καϊάφα). The role of the Jewish high priest in Jerusalem was determined by the Roman authorities. Annas had been the high priest from 6-15 CE, before he was deposed. His sons took over, but eventually Caiaphas, his son in law, became the high priest from 18-36 CE, the correct timeframe for the activities of John and Jesus. Annas had some prestige, connection, or power over Caiaphas as the former high priest and father in law.
Luke then introduced the concept of Elijah to this new child. The role of Elijah can be found also in Mark, chapter 9:11, as well as in Matthew, chapter 17:11, where the disciples of Jesus asked him why the Scribes said that Elijah the prophet had to come first. The prophet Malachi, chapter 4:5, had also foretold the coming of Elijah. Malachi had said that Yahweh was going to send the prophet Elijah before the great and terrible day of Yahweh would come. Jesus did not disagree with this comment. He responded by reiterating that Elijah was indeed coming to restore all things. There was no doubt about the role of Elijah, a 9th century BCE northern Israel prophet, as in the Elijah cycle in 1 Kings, chapter 17-19. He dominated late Jewish thought. In Matthew, Jesus had a clear link of Elijah to John the Baptist, since he was the new Elijah. Here Luke said that this child would precede or go first before the Lord (καὶ αὐτὸς προελεύσεται ἐνώπιον αὐτοῦ). He would have the spirit and the power of Elijah (ἐν πνεύματι καὶ δυνάμει Ἡλεία). Then he would turn the hearts of parents to their children (ἐπιστρέψαι καρδίας πατέρων ἐπὶ τέκνα), as well as turn the disobedient ones into wise righteous ones (καὶ ἀπειθεῖς ἐν φρονήσει δικαίων). He would prepare people to be disposed to get ready for the Lord (ἑτοιμάσαι Κυρίῳ λαὸν κατεσκευασμένον), by teaching about repentance and restoring families. This child was going to be the forerunner for the Messiah, since all the prophets and the law had predicted this right up until the time of this child John.
Now comes the jolt, as the role of this John would be made clear. This angel, via Luke, pointed out that this child will not be just another Jewish kid, but someone special, befitting his special birth. Luke had the angel continue that John would be great in the sight of the Lord (ἔσται γὰρ μέγας ἐνώπιον Κυρίου). However, he must never drink wine, or any strong intoxicating drink (καὶ οἶνον καὶ σίκερα οὐ μὴ πίῃ), like a Nazirite, a person dedicated to God, as in Numbers, chapter 6:1-4. Either a man or woman could take these Nazirite vows that made them closer to Yahweh. In Hebrew the term “nazir” meant a vow, so that it was possible for a non-Levite to be a favorite of Yahweh also. Vow taking in most religious groups sets those people apart, just as the religious vows of the medieval Catholic Church became popular, producing vowed monks and nuns. A striking English comment would be that these are “Nazi rites.” This Nazirite vow separates them from normal life, especially from wine and anything to do with grapes. The Nazirite stayed away from grapes of any kind. Thus, John was to be filled with the Holy Spirit (καὶ Πνεύματος Ἁγίου πλησθήσεται) even before his birth, from his mother’s womb (ἔτι ἐκ κοιλίας μητρὸς αὐτοῦ). John would be holy before he was born. The Holy Spirit would play a major role in the works of Luke here and in Acts. This special role of John is similar to Samuel in 1 Samuel, chapter 1:11, and Samson in Judges, chapter 13:4-7, in the Hebrew Bible. Both were dedicated to be Nazirites before their birth. John was to be a special dude.
This verse is only in a few Orthodox manuscripts. This points to the role of the 2 bandits to fulfill the prophecy of Isaiah, chapter 53:12, about the suffering servant. Mark said that scripture was fulfilled (Καὶ ἐπληρώθη ἡ γραφὴ) that said (ἡ λέγουσα) that the suffering servant Messiah would be counted among the lawless (Καὶ μετὰ ἀνόμων ἐλογίσθη).
This is almost word for word in Matthew, chapter 26:14, and somewhat similar in Luke, chapter 22:3-4, and in John, chapter 13:2, where Satan played a role. Here in Mark, there is just the simple statement that Judas Iscariot (Καὶ Ἰούδας Ἰσκαριὼθ), one of the beloved 12 leaders or apostles (ὁ εἷς τῶν δώδεκα) went to the chief priests (ἀπῆλθεν πρὸς τοὺς ἀρχιερεῖς). He wanted to betray or turn over Jesus to these high priests (ἵνα αὐτὸν παραδοῖ αὐτοῖς). Apparently, according to John, chapter 12:6, Judas had been in charge of their common money, but he was stealing from this fund. Thus, there may have been financial reasons or greed pushing Judas to betray Jesus. John seems to be much more vehemently opposed to Judas.