The sake of Jesus and the gospel (Mk 10:29-10:30)

“Jesus said.

‘Truly!

I say to you!

There is no one

Who has left house,

Or brothers or sisters,

Or mother or father,

Or children,

Or lands,

For my sake

And for the sake

Of the gospel good news,

Who will not receive

A hundredfold now

In this age,

Houses,

Brothers and sisters,

Mothers,

Children,

And field lands,

With persecutions,

In the age to come,

Eternal life.’”

 

ἔφη ὁ Ἰησοῦς Ἀμὴν λέγω ὑμῖν, οὐδείς ἐστιν ὃς ἀφῆκεν οἰκίαν ἢ ἀδελφοὺς ἢ ἀδελφὰς ἢ μητέρα ἢ πατέρα ἢ τέκνα ἢ ἀγροὺς ἕνεκεν ἐμοῦ καὶ ἕνεκεν τοῦ εὐαγγελίου,

ἐὰν μὴ λάβῃ ἑκατονταπλασίονα νῦν ἐν τῷ καιρῷ τούτῳ οἰκίας καὶ ἀδελφοὺς καὶ ἀδελφὰς καὶ μητέρας καὶ τέκνα καὶ ἀγροὺς μετὰ διωγμῶν, καὶ ἐν τῷ αἰῶνι τῷ ἐρχομένῳ ζωὴν αἰώνιον.

 

This demanding saying of Jesus, talking about giving up family and land for eternal life, can be found in Matthew, chapter 19:29, and Luke, chapter 18:29-30, but slightly different.  There is nothing here about the apostles sitting on the 12 thrones judging the 12 tribes, since that was not important to the gentile Christians that Mark was addressing.  Mark said that Jesus then issued a solemn proclamation to his disciples (ἔφη ὁ Ἰησοῦς εἶπεν αὐτοῖς Ἀμὴν λέγω ὑμῖν).  Anyone who has left house (οὐδείς ἐστιν ὃς ἀφῆκεν οἰκίαν), brothers (ἢ ἀδελφοὺς), sisters (ἢ ἀδελφὰς), mother (ἢ μητέρα), father (ἢ πατέρα), children (ἢ τέκνα), or land fields (ἢ ἀγροὺς) for his sake and the sake of the gospel good news (ἕνεκεν ἐμοῦ καὶ ἕνεκεν τοῦ εὐαγγελίου), would receive a hundredfold now in this age (ἐὰν μὴ λάβῃ ἑκατονταπλασίονα νῦν ἐν τῷ καιρῷ τούτῳ), in houses (οἰκίας), brothers (καὶ ἀδελφοὺς), sisters (καὶ ἀδελφὰς), mothers (καὶ μητέρας), children (καὶ τέκνα), and field lands (καὶ ἀγροὺς), with persecutions (μετὰ διωγμῶν), in the age to come, (καὶ ἐν τῷ αἰῶνι τῷ ἐρχομένῳ) and eternal life (ζωὴν αἰώνιον).

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The esteemed wisdom (Wis 7:7-7:14)

“Therefore I prayed.

Understanding was given to me.

I called on God.

The spirit of wisdom came to me.

I preferred her to scepters and thrones.

I accounted wealth as nothing

In comparison with her.

Neither did I liken to her any priceless gem.

Because all gold is

But a little sand in her sight.

Silver will be accounted

As clay before her.

I loved her more than health.

I loved her more than beauty.

I chose to have her rather than light.

Her radiance never ceases.

All good things came to me

Along with her.

In her hands

I had uncounted wealth.

I rejoiced in them all.

Because wisdom leads them.

But I did not know

That she was their mother.

I learned without guile.

I impart without grudging.

I do not hide her wealth.

It is an unfailing treasure for mortals.

Those who get it

Obtain friendship with God.

They are commended for the gifts

That come from instruction.”

One again, assuming the first person singular of King Solomon, this author says that he prayed to God for wisdom. Understanding was given to him. The spirit of wisdom came to him (μοι πνεῦμα σοφίας). Scepters, thrones, and wealth were nothing in comparison to wisdom. Priceless gems, gold (χρυσὸς), and silver were like sand and clay compared to wisdom. He loved wisdom more than health, beauty, or light (φωτὸς) because the radiance of wisdom never ceases. Not only did he get wisdom, he also got any number of other gifts. He had wealth because wisdom was the mother or fount of all his wealth. He did not hide this treasure of wisdom. He gave this to other mortals so that they might be friends of God (οἱ χρησάμενοι πρὸς Θεὸν) with further learning and instruction (παιδείας).

The true sense of God’s justice (Job 36:5-36:12)

“Surely God is mighty.

He does not despise anyone.

He is mighty in strength of understanding.

He does not keep the wicked alive.

He gives the afflicted their right.

He does not withdraw his eyes from the righteous.

With kings upon the throne

He sets them forever.

They are exalted.

If they are bound in fetters,

And caught in the cords of affliction,

Then he declares to them their work.

He declares their transgressions.

They are behaving arrogantly.

He opens their ears to instruction.

He commands that they return from iniquity.

If they listen,

If they serve him,

They complete their days in prosperity.

They complete their years in pleasantness.

But if they do not listen,

They shall perish by the sword.

They die without knowledge.”

Elihu ascribes to God the qualities that he believes a divine power should have. The almighty God does not despise anyone. He is mighty in strength and understanding. He does not keep the wicked alive. He watches the righteous. The kings have their thrones forever. However, if there are transgressions as when they act arrogantly, God would open their ears to instruction. He commands them to open their ears to instructions on how to return from their iniquity. If they listen properly and serve God, they will complete their years in pleasant prosperity. If they do not listen they will perish by the sword without any knowledge. The choice was simple, follow God, and all will be good. Go against God, and you will die.