Repairing garments (Lk 5:36-5:36)

“Jesus told them

A parable.

‘No one tears

A piece

From a new garment

And sews it on

An old garment.

Otherwise,

The new piece

Will be torn.

The new piece

Will not match

The old garment.’”

 

Ἔλεγεν δὲ καὶ παραβολὴν πρὸς αὐτοὺς ὅτι Οὐδεὶς ἐπίβλημα ἀπὸ ἱματίου καινοῦ σχίσας ἐπιβάλλει ἐπὶ ἱμάτιον παλαιόν· εἰ δὲ μήγε, καὶ τὸ καινὸν σχίσει καὶ τῷ παλαιῷ οὐ συμφωνήσει τὸ ἐπίβλημα τὸ ἀπὸ τοῦ καινοῦ.

 

Luke indicated that Jesus told them a parable (Ἔλεγεν δὲ καὶ παραβολὴν πρὸς αὐτοὺς).  This will be first of many parables or stories.  Jesus said that no one tears a piece from a new garment (ὅτι Οὐδεὶς ἐπίβλημα ἀπὸ ἱματίου καινοῦ σχίσας) and sews it on an old garment (ἐπιβάλλει ἐπὶ ἱμάτιον παλαιόν).  Otherwise (εἰ δὲ μήγε), the new piece will be torn (καὶ τὸ καινὸν σχίσει) and the new piece will not match the old garment (καὶ τῷ παλαιῷ οὐ συμφωνήσει τὸ ἐπίβλημα τὸ ἀπὸ τοῦ καινοῦ).  Mark, chapter 2:21, and Matthew, chapter 9:16, are similar to Luke, so that Mark might be the source of this mending of the cloth saying.  Luke called his saying a parable, while Mark and Matthew did not use that terminology.  They remarked that Jesus said that no one would sew a new piece of unshrunk cloth on an old cloak or coat.  This new patch would pull away or tear away.  Then there would be a worse tear there than before.  In other words, do not mend coats with new pieces of cloth.  The new with the old will not work and match correctly.  Let the old garment wear out, because there is nothing that you can do to it.  Is this an indication that the new Jesus ways will not blend with the old Jewish ways?

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Return to Yahweh (Hos 6:1-6:3)

“Come!

Let us return to Yahweh!

He has torn us.

He will heal us.

He has struck us down.

He will bind us up.

After two days,

He will revive us.

On the third day,

He will raise us up,

That we may live

Before him.

Let us know!

Let us press on

To know Yahweh!

His appearing is

As sure

As the dawn.

He will come to us

Like the showers,

Like the spring rains

That water the earth.”

Hosea asked his listeners to return to Yahweh. Although, Yahweh had torn them down, now he would heal them. He had struck them down. Now he would bind them up. After 2 days, he would revive them. On the 3rd day, he would raise them up, a theme of the early Christian writers. Thus, they might live in the sight of Yahweh. They would want to know Yahweh, since his appearance was as sure as the daily dawn of the sun. He would come to them, like a soft shower or spring rain that waters the earth and makes it grow. So, the same thing would happen to these Israelites.

The king’s decree (Dan 3:29-3:29)

Therefore,

I make a decree.

‘Any people,

Any nation,

Any language

That utters

Blasphemy

Against the God

Of Shadrach,

Of Meshach,

Of Abednego,

Shall be torn

Limb from limb.

Their houses will be

Laid in ruins.

There is no other god

Who is able

To deliver

In this way.’”

Now in a complete reversal, King Nebuchadnezzar issued a decree to all the people, all the countries, and all the language groups. Anyone who blasphemed the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego would be torn limb from limb. They would also lose their houses. Anyone speaking badly about the God of Israel would be punished. This king was able to accept a new better God in his polytheistic vision of the world, as his golden statute became less important.

The king explained the consequences of their interpretation (Dan 2:5-2:6)

The king answered

The Chaldeans.

‘This is a public decree.

If you do not tell me

Both the dream

With its interpretation,

You shall be torn

Limb from limb.

Your houses

Shall be laid in ruins.

But if you do tell me

The dream,

With its interpretation,

You shall receive

From me

Gifts,

Rewards,

Great honor.

Therefore,

Tell me the dream!

Tell me its interpretation.’”

The king responded to the Chaldeans with a public decree. If they were unable to tell him both the dream and its interpretation, they would be torn limb from limb. Their houses would be ruined also. However, if they were able to tell him both the dream and its interpretation, they would receive great gifts, rewards, and great honor. This was their challenge. The easier part might be interpreting the dream, but knowing the dream seemed almost impossible.

Like a funeral (Bar 6:31-6:32)

“In these temples

Of false gods,

The priests sit

With their clothes

Torn.

Their heads

Are shaved.

Their beards

Are shaved.

Their heads

Are uncovered.

They howl.

They shout

Before their gods

As some do

At a funeral banquet.”

The priests of these false idol gods sit in the temples with their clothes torn, as if in mourning. They have their heads and beards shaven with nothing to cover their heads. The Israelite and Judean priests always covered their heads, and they normally did not shave their beards. These priests of the false gods, on the other hand, howled and shouted before the images of their gods. They acted like they were at a funeral meal for their dying gods.

Deceptive words (Ps 52:4-52:5)

“You love all words that devour.

O deceitful tongue!

But God will break you down forever.

He will snatch you.

He will tear you from your tent.

He will uproot you from the land of the living.”

Selah

This boastful man, probably Saul, loved devouring words since he had a deceitful tongue.  However, God would break him down forever.  He would be snatched and torn from his tent.  He was going to be sent to death, leaving the land of the living.  This section also ends with a meditative musical interlude pause, a Selah.

Bildad describes the life of the wicked (Job 18:5-18:21)

“Surely the light of the wicked is put out.

The flame of their fire does not shine.

The light is dark in their tent.

The lamp above them is put out.

Their strong steps are shortened.

Their own schemes throw him down.

They are thrust into a net by their own feet.

They walk into a pitfall.

A trap seizes them by the heel.

A snare lays hold of them.

A rope is hid for them in the ground.

A trap for them is in the path.

Terrors frighten them on every side.

They chase them at their heels.

Their strength is consumed by hunger.

Calamity is ready for their stumbling.

By disease their skin is consumed.

The firstborn of death consumes their limbs.

They are torn from the tent in which they trusted.

They are brought to the king of terrors.

In their tents nothing remains.

Sulfur is scattered upon their habitations.

Their roots dry up beneath.

Their branches wither above.

Their memory perishes from the earth.

They have no name in the street.

They are thrust from light into darkness.

They are driven out of the world.

They have no offspring.

They have no descendants among their people.

There are no survivors where they used to live.

They of the west are appalled at their fate.

Horror seizes those of the east.

Surely such are the dwellings of the ungodly.

Such is the place of those who do not know God.”

Bildad described the life of the wicked. There was no light or flame for the wicked. They could only take short steps. They would get caught in their own scheming nets and traps that were hidden in the ground. They were stumbling with hunger as trouble was all around them. Their skin was diseased. They had the worst disease, the first born of death, leprosy or a plague. The ancient people always believed that the worse illness was one of the skin or the bowels. They were torn from their tents to meet the king of terrors, death itself. Nothing was left of them, like a dead tree, as the memory of them perished from this earth. They had no name, no children, and no descendents. This was the dwelling of the ungodly, who did not know God in their terrible existence.