Who can be saved? (Lk 18:26-18:26)

“Those who heard it

Said.

‘Then who can be saved?’”

 

εἶπαν δὲ οἱ ἀκούσαντες Καὶ τίς δύναται σωθῆναι;

 

Luke indicated that those who heard this saying of Jesus about the wealthy people then said (εἶπαν δὲ οἱ ἀκούσαντες) who could be saved (Καὶ τίς δύναται σωθῆναι)?  This same reaction of the disciples can be found in Mark, chapter 10:26, and Matthew, chapter 19:25, almost word for word among them.  Mark said that the disciples of Jesus were very shocked, astonished, and amazed (οἱ δὲ περισσῶς ἐξεπλήσσοντο).  They said to themselves (λέγοντες πρὸς ἑαυτούς), who then could possibly be saved (Καὶ τίς δύναται σωθῆναι)?  In Matthew, when the disciples of Jesus heard this saying (ἀκούσαντες δὲ οἱ μαθηταὶ), they were greatly shocked, astonished, and amazed (ἐξεπλήσσοντο σφόδρα).  They then wondered who then could possibly be saved (Τίς ἄρα δύναται σωθῆναι)?  Could anyone be saved?  Everyone had some kind of wealth, so that this was a very difficult saying for them.  Is this saying about wealth shocking to you?

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Will God delay? (Lk 18:7-18:7)

“Will not God

Grant justice

To his chosen ones

Who cry to him

Day and night?

Will he delay long

In helping them?”

 

ὁ δὲ Θεὸς οὐ μὴ ποιήσῃ τὴν ἐκδίκησιν τῶν ἐκλεκτῶν αὐτοῦ τῶν βοώντων αὐτῷ ἡμέρας καὶ νυκτός, καὶ μακροθυμεῖ ἐπ’ αὐτοῖς;

 

Luke is the only synoptic writer with this parable about the widow and the bad judge.  Luke had Jesus bring this parable to a conclusion with a comment about God.  He wondered whether God (ὁ δὲ Θεὸς) would grant justice (οὐ μὴ ποιήσῃ τὴν ἐκδίκησιν) to his chosen ones (τῶν ἐκλεκτῶν αὐτοῦ) who cried to him (τῶν βοώντων αὐτῷ) day and night (ἡμέρας καὶ νυκτός)?  Would God delay long in helping them (καὶ μακροθυμεῖ ἐπ’ αὐτοῖς)?  The comparison was explicit.  Jesus said that God would grant justice to his chosen ones who petitioned him day and night.  Their persistence prayer would pay off.  God would not delay in helping them and answering their prayers for justice.  Has God answered your persistent prayers?

What happened to other nine? (Lk 17:17-17:17)

“Then Jesus asked.

‘Were not ten

Made clean?

But the other nine,

Where are they?’”

 

ἀποκριθεὶς δὲ ὁ Ἰησοῦς εἶπεν Οὐχ οἱ δέκα ἐκαθαρίσθησαν; οἱ δὲ ἐννέα ποῦ;

 

Only Luke has this story about the curing of the ten lepers.  Luke indicated that Jesus asked this one leper (ἀποκριθεὶς δὲ ὁ Ἰησοῦς εἶπεν), where the other 9 lepers were (οἱ δὲ ἐννέα ποῦ), since 10 were made clean (Οὐχ οἱ δέκα ἐκαθαρίσθησαν).  Luke remarked that Jesus wondered about the other 9 lepers.  How come only one, or 10%, of the 10 cured lepers showed up to give thanks?  Would you be the 10% or the 90%?

The mustard seed (Lk 17:6-17:6)

“The Lord replied.

‘If you had faith

The size of

A mustard seed,

You could say

To this mulberry tree,

‘Be rooted up!

Be planted

In the sea!’’

It would obey you.’”

 

εἶπεν δὲ ὁ Κύριος Εἰ ἔχετε πίστιν ὡς κόκκον σινάπεως, ἐλέγετε ἂν τῇ συκαμίνῳ ταύτῃ Ἐκριζώθητι καὶ φυτεύθητι ἐν τῇ θαλάσσῃ· καὶ ὑπήκουσεν ἂν ὑμῖν.

 

Luke indicated that Jesus, the Lord, replied (εἶπεν δὲ ὁ Κύριος) that if they had faith (Εἰ ἔχετε πίστιν) the size of a mustard seed (ὡς κόκκον σινάπεως), they could say (ἐλέγετε) to this mulberry or sycamore tree (ἂν τῇ συκαμίνῳ ταύτῃ), be rooted up (Ἐκριζώθητι) and planted in the sea (καὶ φυτεύθητι ἐν τῇ θαλάσσῃ).  Luke is the only biblical writer to use the Greek term συκαμίνῳ that means a black mulberry tree or a sycamore tree that had medicinal value.  Then this tree would obey them (καὶ ὑπήκουσεν ἂν ὑμῖν).  There are expanded faith sayings that can also be found in Mark, chapter 9:28-29, and Matthew, chapter 17:19-21, who are much closer to each other.  Matthew indicated that the disciples came to Jesus privately (Τότε προσελθόντες οἱ μαθηταὶ τῷ Ἰησοῦ).  They wondered why they were not able to cast out the evil spirits from that boy (κατ’ ἰδίαν εἶπον Διὰ τί ἡμεῖς οὐκ ἠδυνήθημεν ἐκβαλεῖν αὐτό).  Jesus reminded them (ὁ δὲ λέγει αὐτοῖς) of their little faith (Διὰ τὴν ὀλιγοπιστίαν ὑμῶν), a term used predominately by Matthew.  Jesus came back with a solemn pronouncement (ἀμὴν γὰρ λέγω ὑμῖν) that if they had faith the size of a mustard seed (ἐὰν ἔχητε πίστιν ὡς κόκκον σινάπεως), like here in Luke, they could move mountains from here to there (ἐρεῖτε τῷ ὄρει τούτῳ Μετάβα ἔνθεν ἐκεῖ, καὶ μεταβήσεται).  Nothing would be impossible for them (καὶ οὐδὲν ἀδυνατήσει ὑμῖν).  If they had faith with prayer and fasting (εἰ μὴ ἐν προσευχῇ καὶ νηστείᾳ), they would be able to cast the evil spirits out (τοῦτο δὲ τὸ γένος οὐκ ἐκπορεύεται).  Matthew continued to emphasize the lack of faith or the little faith of the disciples of Jesus.  Mark said that the disciples wondered why they were not able to cast out the evil spirit from that boy (Ὅτι ἡμεῖς οὐκ ἠδυνήθημεν ἐκβαλεῖν αὐτό).  The disciples were concerned that they must have lacked something that made it impossible for them to get rid of this evil spirit that was in that boy.  Mark added the need for prayer.  There was no emphasis on faith as in Matthew, where Jesus talked about faith and the mustard seed.  Mark emphasized prayer, as he indicated that Jesus said that this kind of evil spirit could only be expelled (Τοῦτο τὸ γένος ἐν οὐδενὶ δύναται ἐξελθεῖν) through prayer (εἰ μὴ ἐν προσευχῇ).  Prayer might imply faith, but it is not explicit here in Luke.  Which is more important to you, faith or prayer?

Heal the daughter of Abraham (Lk 13:16-13:16)

“Ought not this woman,

A daughter of Abraham,

Whom Satan bound

For eighteen years,

Be set free

From this bondage

On the Sabbath day?”

 

ταύτην δὲ θυγατέρα Ἀβραὰμ οὖσαν, ἣν ἔδησεν ὁ Σατανᾶς ἰδοὺ δέκα καὶ ὀκτὼ ἔτη, οὐκ ἔδει λυθῆναι ἀπὸ τοῦ δεσμοῦ τούτου τῇ ἡμέρᾳ τοῦ σαββάτου;

 

Luke uniquely indicated that Jesus said that this daughter of Abraham (ταύτην δὲ θυγατέρα Ἀβραὰμ), whom Satan had bound up (οὖσαν, ἣν ἔδησεν ὁ Σατανᾶς ἰδοὺ) for 18 years (δέκα καὶ ὀκτὼ ἔτη), ought to be set free from this bondage (οὐκ ἔδει λυθῆναι ἀπὸ τοῦ δεσμοῦ τούτου) on the Sabbath day (τῇ ἡμέρᾳ τοῦ σαββάτου).  Jesus wondered why this daughter of Abraham, a Jewish woman, should not be freed from her 18-year long Satan bondage on the Sabbath.  In other words, her infirmity was explicitly due to her Satanic possession.  Do you know anyone who has suffered from the same disease for 18 years?

Jesus was upset (Lk 9:41-9:41)

“Jesus answered.

‘O faithless generation!

O perverse generation!

How much longer

Must I be with you?

How much longer

Must I bear with you?

Bring your son here!’”

 

ἀποκριθεὶς δὲ ὁ Ἰησοῦς εἶπεν Ὦ γενεὰ ἄπιστος καὶ διεστραμμένη, ἕως πότε ἔσομαι πρὸς ὑμᾶς καὶ ἀνέξομαι ὑμῶν; προσάγαγε ὧδε τὸν υἱόν σου.

 

Jesus appeared to be exasperated with them.  Luke indicated that Jesus answered by saying (ἀποκριθεὶς δὲ ὁ Ἰησοῦς εἶπεν) that they were a faithless (Ὦ γενεὰ ἄπιστος) and perverted generation (καὶ διεστραμμένη).  He wanted to know how many more days he would have to be with them (ἕως πότε ἔσομαι πρὸς ὑμᾶς)?  How much longer would he have to put up with them (καὶ ἀνέξομαι ὑμῶν)?  Finally, he said to the man to bring his son (προσάγαγε ὧδε τὸν υἱόν σου).  The response of Jesus to the father of the incurable epileptic son can be found in all 3 synoptic gospels, Matthew, chapter 17:17, Mark, chapter 9:19, and here in Luke, almost word for word.  Mark said that Jesus responded to them, as he called them out as a faithless generation.  Almost in desperation, he wondered how much longer he was going to be with them and how much longer would he have to bear with them.  He told them to bring the boy to him.  Matthew said that Jesus reprimanded his disciples, as Jesus called them out as a faithless, corrupt, and perverse generation.  He also wondered how much longer he was going to be with them and how much longer he had to put up with them.  He told them to bring the boy to him.  Have you ever been exasperated with certain people?

They were amazed at Jesus (Lk 8:25-8:25)

“Jesus said to them.

‘Where is your faith?’

They were afraid.

Yet they were amazed.

They said

To one another.

‘Who then is this?

He commands

Even the winds

And the water!

They obey him!’”

 

εἶπεν δὲ αὐτοῖς Ποῦ ἡ πίστις ὑμῶν; φοβηθέντες δὲ ἐθαύμασαν, λέγοντες πρὸς ἀλλήλους Τίς ἄρα οὗτός ἐστιν, ὅτι καὶ τοῖς ἀνέμοις ἐπιτάσσει καὶ τῷ ὕδατι, καὶ ὑπακούουσιν αὐτῷ;

 

Luke indicated that Jesus asked his disciples (εἶπεν δὲ αὐτοῖς) where was their faith (Ποῦ ἡ πίστις ὑμῶν)?  They were afraid (φοβηθέντες), but amazed (δὲ ἐθαύμασαν) at the same time.  They said to one another (λέγοντες πρὸς ἀλλήλους).  Who is this (Τίς ἄρα οὗτός ἐστιν) that commands (ἐπιτάσσει) even the winds (ὅτι καὶ τοῖς ἀνέμοις) and the water (καὶ τῷ ὕδατι)?  Both the winds and the water obey him (καὶ ὑπακούουσιν αὐτῷ).  This rebuke of Jesus can also be found in Matthew, chapter 8:26-27, and Mark, chapter 4:40-41, in a somewhat similar manner.  Mark said that Jesus then turned to his followers and asked them why they were afraid?  Was it because they still had no faith?  Jesus called out his disciples for their lack of faith or trust, while showing his great power.  Perhaps, this was a slap at some of the early Christian followers of Jesus, who lacked a strong belief in him.  These male disciples of Jesus were filled with great fear or awe.  They said to one another who is this man?  Both the winds and the seas obey or listen to him.  Matthew said that these disciples of Jesus marveled or were amazed at what they had just seen take place.  They wondered out loud what kind of man that Jesus was?  Both the winds and the seas obey him.  Jesus was the Lord of nature and weather.  Do you believe that Jesus can control the winds and the water?