Bad things ahead (Lk 19:44-19:44)

“They will crush you

To the ground,

You

And your children

Within you.

They will not leave

Within you

One stone

Upon another.

You did not recognize

The time of your visitation

From God.”                                                                

 

καὶ ἐδαφιοῦσίν σε καὶ τὰ τέκνα σου ἐν σοί, καὶ οὐκ ἀφήσουσιν λίθον ἐπὶ λίθον ἐν σοί, ἀνθ’ ὧν οὐκ ἔγνως τὸν καιρὸν τῆς ἐπισκοπῆς σου.

 

Luke indicated that Jesus said that the enemies would crush Jerusalem to the ground (καὶ ἐδαφιοῦσίν σε).  Luke was the only one among all the Greek biblical writers to use this word ἐδαφιοῦσίν, that means to raze, dash to the ground, or level with the ground.  Jesus used the second personal singular, when he said that the city along with their children or inhabitants (καὶ τὰ τέκνα σου ἐν σοί) would be destroyed.  Their enemies would not leave one stone upon another in that city (καὶ οὐκ ἀφήσουσιν λίθον ἐπὶ λίθον ἐν σοί), because the people of Jerusalem had not recognized the time of the visitation from God (ἀνθ’ ὧν οὐκ ἔγνως τὸν καιρὸν τῆς ἐπισκοπῆς σου), Jesus himself.  In predicting the future fall of Jerusalem in 70 CE, Jesus projected many of the same warnings that the Israelite and Judean prophets had proclaimed before the fall of Jerusalem in 587 BCE.  The people of Jerusalem had failed to recognize what was happening around them.  Are you aware of your situation in the city that you live?

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The king responds favorably also (Jon 3:6-3:6)

“When the news reached

The king of Nineveh,

He arose

From his throne.

He removed

His robe.

He covered himself

With sackcloth.

He sat in ashes.”

When the king of Nineveh heard about the proclamations of Jonah, he rose from his throne and took off his royal robes.  He then covered himself with sackcloth and sat in ashes.  The use of the common sack cloth used for carrying vegetables instead of better clothes was a sign of mourning and repentance.  Like a good king, he was going along with his subjects who took the warnings of Jonah very seriously.

Yahweh will rescue Jerusalem (Isa 29:5-29:8)

“But the multitude of your foes

Shall be like small dust.

The multitude of tyrants

Shall be like passing chaff.

In an instant,

Suddenly,

You will be visited by Yahweh of hosts.

He will come with thunder.

He will come with an earthquake.

He will come with a great noise.

He will come with a whirlwind.

He will come with a tempest.

He will come with the flame of a devouring fire.

The multitude of all the nations that fight against Ariel,

All that fight against her,

All that had a stronghold,

All that distress her

Shall be like a dream.

They shall be like a vision of the night.

Just as when a hungry man dreams of eating,

Yet wakes up still hungry.

Or when a thirsty man dreams he is drinking,

Yet wakes up faint,

Still thirsty.

So shall the multitude of all the nations be.

All those that fight against Mount Zion

Shall be like that.”

Despite the earlier warnings, Yahweh will rescue Jerusalem, as her many enemies will become like dust. The tyrants against her will be like passing chaff. Suddenly, there will a visit from Yahweh with thunder, earthquakes, strong storms, and devouring flames. All her enemies who distressed Jerusalem will be like a bad dream. All those nations fighting against Jerusalem will be faint and weak. They will be like those who dream of food and drink, yet wake up still hungry and thirsty.

The house of death (Prov 7:24-7:27)

“Now!

My children!

Listen to me!

Be attentive to the words of my mouth!

Do not let your hearts turn aside to her ways.

Do not stray into her paths.

Many are those she has laid low.

Numerous are her victims.

Her house is the way to Sheol.

You will be going down to the chambers of death.”

This chapter ends with the death of the simpleton. Once again, there is the parental warning to pay attention to his words. They should not turn away from his warnings. They were not to listen to the smooth and seductive words of the prostitute. The adulteress had laid low many. They were to stay the path and not stray into her paths. Her house was the way to hell, Sheol, the dark underworld of death. Going into that house would lead to death. It is not clear how she actually killed them. This is a very strong warning against adultery and prostitution with the punishment as death.

Promises and warnings (Deut 11:8-11:17)

“Keep then this entire commandment that I am commanding you today, so that you may have strength and go in and take possession of the land that you are crossing over to occupy. Thus you may live long in the land that Yahweh swore to your ancestors to give them and to their descendants, a land flowing with milk and honey.”

Once again, keep and obey all the commandments, and you will live long in your newly occupied ‘land flowing with milk and honey.’

“The land that you are about to enter to occupy is not like the land of Egypt, from which you have come. There you sowed your seed and irrigated by foot like a vegetable garden. But the land that you are crossing over to occupy is a land of hills and valleys, watered by the rain from the sky, a land that Yahweh your God looks after. The eyes of Yahweh your God are always on it, from the beginning of the year to the end of the year.”

This new land does not need to be watered or irrigated, but enjoys the natural rain because Yahweh cares so much for it and you all year long. This new land is not like the manual hard working vegetable gardens of Egypt. Land is a key element of the Israelite experience.

“If you will only heed his every commandment that I am commanding you today, loving Yahweh your God, and serving him with all your heart and with all your soul, then he will give the rain for your land in its season, the early rain and the later rain. You will gather in your grain, your wine, and your oil. He will give grass in your fields for your livestock. You will eat your fill. Take care. Or you will be seduced into turning away, serving other gods and worshiping them. Then the anger of Yahweh will be kindled against you. He will shut up the heavens, so that there will be no rain. The land will yield no fruit. Then you will perish quickly off the good land that Yahweh is giving you.”

If you obey and follow Yahweh’s commandments with your whole heart and soul, you will get appropriate rain. Rain becomes very important. Without it you might perish. To make sure that there is enough appropriate rain, follow Yahweh’s commandments. Somehow this gives the impression that God controls the rain and the weather, which is an important idea among most religions. Do not be seduced by other gods or else, you will perish in this good land.