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Showing the Places mention^! 
by S^ Luke,and the Main Roads 














3. B. R. B. 
Jarvis Stre 


First published in 1922 

931 SO 

MAY 2 3 1974 


riTHE primary object of these Commentaries is to be exe- 
getical, to interpret the meaning of each book of the 
Bible in the light of modern knowledge to English readers. 
The Editors will not deal, except subordinately, with questions 
of textual criticism or philology ; but taking the English text 
in the Revised Version as their basis, they will aim at com 
bining a hearty acceptance of critical principles with loyalty to 
the Catholic Faith. 

The series will be less elementary than the Cambridge Bible 
for Schools, less critical than the International Critical Com 
mentary, less didactic than the Expositor s Bible ; and it is 
hoped that it may be of use both to theological students and to 
the clergy, as well as to the growing number of educated laymen 
and laywomen who wish to read the Bible intelligently and 

Each commentary will therefore have 

(i) An Introduction stating the bearing of modern criticism 
and research upon the historical character of the book, and 
drawing out the contribution which the book, as a whole, makes 
to the body of religious truth. 

(ii) A careful paraphrase of the text with notes on the 
more difficult passages and, if need be, excursuses on any 
points of special importance either for doctrine, or ecclesiastical 
organization, or spiritual life. 

But the books of the Bible are so varied in character that 
considerable latitude is needed, as to the proportion which the 
various parts should hold to each other. The General Editor 

ri NOTE 

will therefore only endeavour to secure a general uniformity in 
scope and character : but the exact method adopted in each 
case and the final responsibility for the statements made will 
rest with the individual contributors. 

By permission of the Delegates of the Oxford University 
Press and of the Syndics of the Cambridge University Press 
the Text used in this Series of Commentaries is the Revised 
Version of the Holy Scriptures. 



present volume is designed, in conformity with the 
scope of the whole series, to provide a simple, practical, 
and, in some sense, devotional commentary on The most 
Beautiful Book in the World ; a commentary which shall keep 
the average reader in touch with the main results of modern 
scholarship, and introduce him here and there to conjectures 
and suggestive interpretations still sub iudice. 

This will explain the frequent references made to the 
Oxford Studies in the Synoptic Problem, and the occasional 
references to books like Hawkins s Horae Synopticae and 
Stanton s The Gospels as Historical Documents. The author 
felt it incumbent on him, at the risk of occasional tediousness, 
to keep the Synoptic Problem always in view, and to give his 
readers constant opportunities for consulting what he con 
ceives to be the best opinion on the subject easy of access. 

To the writers of the above-mentioned works, and to others 
mentioned from time to time in the succeeding pages, the 
author acknowledges a real debt of gratitude. But there are 
two names of which he cannot but make special mention : 
Dr Lock, general editor of this series, to whose kindly but 
sure criticism and to whose suggestions the volume owes 
much, and the Rev. Paul Levertoff, the learned subwarden 
of St. Deiniol s Library, from whose generously administered 
stores of Rabbinical lore he has gathered the information 
specially marked (P.L.) in the Notes, and much besides. Still 
more he owes, as does all the world, to the Beloved Physician 
and Evangelist himself, of whom he would fain have proved 
himself a more worthy disciple. 


The writer is quite conscious that his own individual 
tastes, especially his love of Italian Art, have affected the 
Commentary in a way that may seem out of due proportion, 
but he feels that each new Commentator should enable the 
reader to approach a familiar subject from a fresh point of 
view : and the tradition which regarded St. Luke as a portrait 
painter has supplied a pretext for this. 

Perhaps more justification may be needed for the use of 
Papini s Storia di Cristo which only appeared in 1921. On 
its behalf may be pleaded the extraordinary graphic power of 
this latest recruit from the ranks of Christ s enemies to those 
of His ardent disciples, whose setting of the Gospel narrative, 
based on no mean understanding of the relevant literature, 
though deliberately non-critical, is by no means uncritical. 
The references to Dante may also be excused in this sex 
centenary anniversary of his death, when a considerable and 
growing number of English students is more than ever con 
vinced that He being dead, yet speaketh. 

Holy Cross Day, 1921. 

L. R. 




I. The Author : Saint Luke xi 

II. Date and Circumstances of Writing of the Gospel . . xvii 

III. Sources of the Gospel : Its relation to the other Gospels . xxi 

IV. Language and Style ........ xxvi 

The Gospels in Art ........ xxxii 

V. Characteristic Features of the Third Gospel .... xxxiv 

VI. The Text xli 

VII. St Luke s Outline of the Ministry ..... xliii 

RUNNING ANALYSIS .... ... xlvi 

11-4 THE AUTHOR S PREFACE ....... 1 


(a) I 5-25 The Promise of the Forerunner .... 6 

(6)126-38 The Annunciation ... .11 

(c) I 39-56 The Visitation. The Magnificat . . .17 

(d) I 57-79 Birth and Circumcision of John. The Benedictus 21 

(e) II 1-20 The Birth of Christ 26 

(/)II21 The Circumcision of Christ .... 33 

(g) II 22-39 Presentation in the Temple ; Simeon s Song and 

Prediction and testimony of Anna . . 34 
(h) II 40-52 The Boyhood of Jesus 40 


(a) III 1-23 The Mission of John and Baptism of Jesus . . 43 
(6) III 24-38 The Earthly Genealogy of Jesus ... 50 
(c) IV 1-13 The Temptation 51 


(1) IV 14-44 First Period : Nazareth and Capernaum . . 59 

(2) V 1 VI 49 Second Period : from the Call of the first Disciples 

to the appointment of the Twelve and the Great Sermon . 66 

(3) VII 1 VIII 56 Third Period : from the Great Sermon to the 

Mission of the Twelve ....... 89 

(4) IX 1-50 Fourth Period and Climax of the Galilean Ministry: 

from the Mission of the Twelve to the end of the Northern 
Ministry 118 





(1) IX 51 XI 42 First Period of the Journeyings : from the 

conclusion of the Galilean Ministry to the Visit to Bethany 142 

(2) XI 1 XIII 35 Second Period of the Journeyings : from 

the Visit to Bethany to the Lament over Jerusalem . .160 

(3) XIV 1 XVII 10 Third Period of the Journeyings : from 

the Lament over Jerusalem to the Pilgrimage of the Last 
Passover ......... 198 

(4) XVII 11 XIX 27 Fourth Period of the Journeyinge : The 

Last Peraean Mission and Journey up to the Passover of 

the Passion 226 


( 1 ) XIX 28 XXI 38 From the Triumphal Entry to the Betrayal 249 

(2) XXII 1-53 From the Betrayal to the Arrest . . .272 

(3) XXII 54 XXIII 32 The Trials : The Way of the Cross . 288 

(4) XXIII 33-56 The Death and Burial . . . .298 


(1) XXIV 1-12 The Resurrection and First Appearances . 309 

(2) XXIV 13-43 The Walk to Emmaus : The Appearance in the 

Upper Room 313 

(3) XXIV 44-53 Summary from Easter to the Ascension . 319 

INDEX . 323 


I. The Author : Saint Luke 

Saint Luke is unique among New Testament writers, first in that his 
work the third Gospel and Acts taken together bulks 
His unique largest : more than all St Paul s Epistles together ; more 
to N.T. than a quarter (nearly two-sevenths) of the entire New Testa 

ment ; secondly, because he is the only Gentile contributor 
to the Bible. 

What St Luke was as a man is reflected in his writings. Wide and deep 

sympathy, love of souls, interest in simple things, in manhood 

His character an( J womanhood, in childhood and domesticity, in the joy of 

his writings life, in prayer, worship, praise, and thanksgiving ; historical 

sense, keen observation, loyalty to fact ; gift of narrative, 

dramatic, and artistic sense, and a certain genial humour ; deep enthusiasm 

for the Saviour, the Divine-Human Christ, and for the first missionary heroes 

of the Ascended Lord all these are there, and much more. No wonder his 

Gospel is described by Renan as the most beautiful book ever written. 

In spite of the scantiness of contemporary references we may say we know 
him better than we know any other New Testament writer except St Paul, 
whose inner revelations of his own heart in the Epistles are so beautifully 
supplemented by St Luke s narrative of his deeds and some of his words. 
Ac xx 18-38, for instance, tells us much about St Paul s lovableness and not 
a little about St Luke s. 

What then does the New Testament tell us about St Luke, and what does 

he say about himself ? The traditional title of the Gospel, Kara 

Author of A.OVKUV according to Luke holds the field. 1 We may 

and Act s safely assume that the third Gospel and Acts (certainly by the 

same hand) are his ; and also, with the overwhelming majority 

of modern critics, that the I of Lk i 3 and Ac i 1 is included in the We 

of St Paul s companion of the Second and Third Missionary Journeys, who 

gives us his first-hand experiences in Ac xvi 10-17, xx 6 xxi 18, xxvii 1 

xxviii 16. 

St Paul mentions Luke three times by name, in letters of which one 

(2 Tim) certainly belongs to the Apostle s second imprison- 

Luke ment at Rome the imprisonment which led up to his martyr- 

name 10n * dom (? A. D. 64). The other two are earlier. They have been 

1 See below, pp. xii, xiii, and Plummer. St Luke I.C.C.. Introduction, I, 
esp. p. xiv. 


precariously assigned to the imprisonment at Caesarea (? A.D. 58-59), but more 
Evidence of usually to the first captivity at Rome : the episode with whicl 
Paulme the Acts ends (? A.D. 59-60). We may perhaps securely assign 

them to this later period. 

(a) Epistles of First Raman Captivity: Philem 24; Col iv 10-14. 
Besides implying that Luke was with Paul at Rome during this imprisonment, 
these references also give us further information. From the Epistle to Phile 
mon we learn that he was (together with Mark, Aristarchus, 
An evangelist ^ Demas) a f e n ow . WO rker (wvcprfs), i. e. a co-operator 
with St Paul in missionary, evangelistic work. 

From the Epistle to the Colossians we learn still more. Col iv 10-14 gives 
two groups of names : (1) three converts from Judaism the only ones - 
viz. Aristarchus, Mark, and Jesus called Justus : (2) three by inference 


This important evidence is corroborated by the internal testimony of his 
own writings, to the effect that St Luke is not a Hellenist Jew 
A Gentile ^ & genuine G ent U e , 

Further, Luke is styled here (iv 14) 6 larpos 6 ayairijToy, the beloved 

physician : a statement again, as most critics think, fully 

corroborated by the evidence of his phraseology (see further, 
pp. xxx, xxxi). This title is taken up by ecclesiastical writers, beginning with 
the Muratorian fragment (A. D. 170-200), where he is described as Medicua. 
Beloved speaks to us of his character ; physician of his profession and 
attainments. This latter suggests that which we all find in his writings 
a keen student of human nature, with a sympathy for human weakness and 
infirmity, and a marked interest in childhood, motherhood, joy, and pain. 
Further, it puts him among the scientists of his day : with faculties of 

observation and judgement specially trained, a capacity for 
Pauifne 16 C weighing evidence, an instinctive feeling for accuracy and order. 
Epistles Doctors were highly thought of by the Empire in those days. 

Beloved > Julius Caesar had given the citizenship to all those resident in 

Rome (Suet. Jul. 64). 

(6) Epistle of the Second Roman Captivity : 2 Tim iv 11. This reference 
enforces and illustrates the beloved of Col iv 14, and adds a touch of deep 
human interest reflecting honour upon St Luke. Only Luke is with me. Of 

St Paul s former companions Mark is apparently at Ephesus, the 
theTndf t0 destination of the letter, on apostolic business (iv 10) ; Demas has 

forsaken his leader. The Beloved is also the loyal to the 
end ; and may indeed have been the amanuensis of the Epistle. 

The only other possible New Testament reference to St Luke is that of 

Ac xiii 1, where Lucius ofCyrene stands shoulder to shoulder 
Doubtful with Herod s foster-brother (cf. Lk viii 3 note) among the group 
Ac xiii of prominent churchmen at Antioch in Syria, who send forth 

Paul and Barnabas on their mission. If it were possible to iden 
tify Lucas with Lucius, this would harmonize with the early and general 


tradition that connects Luke with Antioch l ; it would also go some way 
to explain the special interest shown, in the third Gospel and 
the Acts, in Herod s court and household (cf. viii 3, ix 7, xiii 31, 
xxiii 7-12 ; Ac iv 27, xii, xiii 1). 

Till quite recently the identification of the two names was considered 

childish and hopelessly unscientific. But Sir W. M. Ramsay 

Luchfs and nas re P ene d the question. It may remain true in general that 

Lucas (AouKaf) is properly the abbreviation of the cognomen or 

third name of a Roman in full, Lucanus 2 while Lucius is a very common 

praenomen or first name ; but Ramsay has found evidence that in early 

inscriptions in Asia Minor : (a) Lucas was used as a praenomen, presumably 

equivalent to Lucius we have the name XovKas nXXioy npiratv and (6) that 

the two forms were apparently applied actually to the same person ; for 

a pair of inscriptions gives the names of two brothers variously as \OVKIOS, 


This certainly makes the identification of our Luke with Lucius of Cyrene 
conceivable ; nor is there wanting another piece of evidence to 
Western favour the identity. For the We , which in our authorized 

Ac xi 37 text of Acts occurs first at xvi 10, is found in Codex Bezae (con 
jectured by Blass to represent Luke s own first edition of his 
book) * at xi 27, where this text adds, and there was much gladness, and 
when we were collected together, one of them named Agabus spake. . . . 

Nor should we omit, in this connexion, the fact mentioned by a recent 
commentator 5 that there was a good medical school at Cyrene. 

Are there any other possible references to St Luke in the 
reference s lble ^ ew Testament ? Such have been conjectured in two of 
St Paul s Epistles. 

(a) 2 Cor viii 18 the brother whose praise is in the Gospel. Origen 

identified this brother with St Luke, and certainly Luke 
might answer to the description, as a faithful fellow-labourer 

of the Apostle in evangelistic work, though any reference to his authorship 

of the third Gospel is out of the question. 

(b) Later on in the Epistle (2 Cor xii 18) mention is again made of 
the brother, sent in company with Titus. Souter suggests that St Paul 
is referring to Titus s own brother certainly a valid and natural transla 
tion of the Greek so that if these identifications are accepted, we gain 
a new fact about St Luke ; namely, that the recipient of one of St Paul s 

1 First, in the Latin Praefatio Lucae, attributed by Harnack to the third century 
at latest. There he is styled a Syrian of Antioch. 

* Lucanus would make the Evangelist a namesake possibly a fellow clansman 
of the well-known poet M. Annaeus Lucanus (d. A. D. 65), an elder contemporary, 
and might connect him also with the contemporary philosopher Seneca, who 
belonged to the same Annaean gens. 

3 Recent Discovery, pp. 374-377. 

4 On Codex Bezae, see further, VI, p. xiii. 

* See A. S. Peake s Commentary on the Bible, p. 724. 


Pastoral Epistles was brother to the author of the Acts and the third 
Gospel. 1 

Having exhausted all possible references to St Luke in St Paul s writings, 
we now turn to note what he has to say about himself. 

Hi a autobiographical references may be divided into three groups : 

Auto- ( a ) the dedication of the third Gospel, (6) the dedication of the 

biographical , , , , TTT , . , , . , 

references Acts, and (c) the We passages in the Acts. 

He speaks of himself as me ((8oe Hanoi) in Lk i 3, as I (fVoir/cm/iiji ) 
in Ac i 1, and includes himself in the we (ffrrrpaiitv) of Ac xvi 10, &c. 
(a) Lk i 1-4 the best bit of Greek in the New Testament (see p. xxvii) 

expounds the author s purpose and plan as a writer : the purpose, 
Dedication to put into the possession of Theophilus (not exclusively, of 
Gospel course, though the form of a Dedication necessarily suggests 

this Theophilus addressed as Excellency ((cpdnore), and 
therefore probably a Roman official of some dignity) accurate information 
as to the fundamentals of Christianity. Theophilus is perhaps a catechumen 
(i 4), and possibly resident in Antioch. The method, to compile an ordered 
narrative by consultation of eyewitnesses and documents and the careful 
sifting of evidence. 

(6) Ac i 1. Here St Luke announces to Theophilus (no longer addressed 

with the title) his purpose to continue beyond the Ascension the 
o > /Acts tl0n narrative of the Lord s work and influence (what Jesus went 

on to do and to teach ). Here there is the same orderly 
arrangement as we can discern in the third Gospel. The work of Christ s 
Gift and Representative, the Holy Ghost, is shown to us in ever-widening 
circles, of which the outline is given in our Lord s words (Ac i 8) Jerusalem 
. . . Judaea and Samaria . . . uttermost part of the earth. To the minute 
accuracy of the setting of this narrative where it can be tested, Sir W. M. 
Ramsay s researches bear eloquent testimony. 

(c) Ac [xi 27a], xvi 10-17, xx 6 xxi 18, xxvii 1 xxviii 16. (So-called 

Travel-Document .) The first person plural the We 
The We shows St Luke as companion of St Paul in his missionary wan- 
Acts derings, even as the references in Philem, Col, and 2 Tim show 

him as sharer of the Apostle s imprisonments. 

Its earlier occurrence in the Bezan text (D) would indicate a much earlier 
acquaintance with St Paul probably previous to A. D. 40 but in his later 
edition 3 Luke seems to have expunged this and confined the references to the 
time of more active companionship with the Apostle. 

St Paul has a vision of a Man of Macedonia at Troas, urging him to 

come over and help us and immediately, in the next verse 
MaceXa f ( Ac xvi 10 ) the the y of the narrative becomes We , and 

Luke is one of the party. Ramsay 3 (and Souter following 

1 It would be tempting to see St Luke in th yv-fjaif uwfrye true yoke 
fellow of Phil iv 3 for not a few reasons, were it not that Luke was almost certainly 
at Rome with the Apostle when the Letter was written. 

2 If we are to accept Blass s theory. 3 St Paul the Traveller, p. 203. 


him *) identifies Luke with the Man of Macedonia of Ac xvi 9. Antioch, 
Luke s traditional native city, like so many of the Greek cities of the East, 
was a Macedonian foundation, colonized by aristocratic families of Macedonia. 
May not St Luke have been an Antiochene of Philippian descent, and so at 
home in Philippi ? Certainly there is in Ac xvi 12 an apparently 
disproportionate emphasis on Philippi. It is described (a) as 
irpatrij TTJS fiepidos rroXis first of the district true, doubt 
less, in some sense, since Luke is our authority ; yet Amphipolis was actual 
capital of the district, and Thessalonica of the province. O) He names it 
also as a Roman Colony. This is certainly the case : but it was true also 
of Antioch in Pisidia. of Lystra, of Troas, of Corinth all of which he names 
without mentioning their colonial status. Philippi, as the scene of the 
momentous defeat of Brutus and Cassius in 42 B. c., was surely well enough 
known to St Luke s Gentile readers. But (unless the reference to its status be 
merely inserted to lead up to xvi 37, 38) obviously he has a special interest 
and pride in it, as St Paul in Tarsus, when he calls himself in Ac xxi 39 
* a citizen of no mean city. 

Is it necessary, however, that Philippi should therefore be St Luke a 
native city ? We may argue, perhaps, against Rackham s suggestion (Acts, 
pp. xxx, xxxi) that Luke s native place was Pisidian Antioch, by adducing 
the fact that he does not even trouble to accord that city its status as a colony ; 
but for his special interest in Philippi we may find other sufficient reasons. 

Not only do the We passages indicate periods in which the author 

Luke s accompanied St Paul on his missions ; but one, at least, of the 

mission at . . . 

Philippi gaps where the first person is dropped is full of significance. 

Ere the Apostle leaves Philippi on his Second Missionary Journey, the 
narrative (xvi 18) relapses into the third person, and the We is not resumed 
until St Paul returns to the same city, some six years later, on his Third 
Journey. The natural and generally accepted inference is that for those 
years, or the greater part of them, Luke remained at Philippi, engaged in 
a happy work of building up the Church ; which would endear the Mace 
donian city to him for the rest of his life, and draw him not only to emphasize 
its importance in every possible way, but also to take pains to indicate in his 
narrative, when it came to be written, that he was with St Paul at the first 
founding of that Church (cf. the emphatic Paul and us of Ac xvi 17). 

In Ac xx 6 xxi 18 he joins his old chief again, and is his companion in 

the fateful journey back to Jerusalem (during which they were 

companion- fellow guests of Philip the Evangelist Ac xxi 8-10) ; was 

It^aui 111 near k* m doubtless (Ac xxiv 23), though not continuously with 

him (the We is dropped from ch xxi till xxvii), during the long 

months of his imprisonment at Caesarea : his close companion again in the 

voyage to Rome (Ac xxvii 2), in the sojourn at Malta (xxviii 1-10), where he 

perhaps took part in the treatment of the sick (cf. the plural in Ac xxviii 10), 

and in the two imprisonments in the Eternal City. 

Art. Luke, Hastings D.C.O, 



This companionship necessarily colours his outlook and his work. 1 
Whether or not St Paul first converted him to the faith, we do 
Praefatio no t know. He nowhere styles him his Son ; and the early 
Latin Praefatio Lucae, says Luke, by nation a Syrian of 
Antioch, a disciple of the Apostles and afterwards a follower of St Paul, served 
his master blamelessly tiU his confession. For having neither wife nor 
children, he died in Bithynia at the age of 74, filled with the Holy Ghost, 
Filled with the Holy Ghost a favourite expression of his own (Lk i 15, 
41, 67, iv 1 ; Ac ii 4, iv 8, &c.). But his inspiration, under God, was not 
a little due to St Paul s companionship. To his own Hellenic sympathy and 
tolerance and width of outlook, love of beauty, and love of things human, 
he adds a Pauline enthusiasm for the cause of Christ spiritual imperialism, 
and love of sinful souls. 

Does the Praefatio quoted above give us a credible account of our 
Evangelist s last days ? Internal evidence is in its favour. As 
Dr Vernon Bartlet points out (s.v. Luke in Encyd. Brit.), an 
invented story would certainly have made him martyred ; so the 
simple statement that he died at the age of 74 in itself goes some way to 
accredit the whole tradition. The fact that he is further described as a 
disciple of the Apostles (plur.) has led a recent writer to conjecture 
(G. H. Whitaker, Expositor, Dec. 1919) that St Luke was the convert and 
disciple of Barnabas, whom he so enthusiastically describes in Ac xi 23, 24 
(cf. iv 36, ix 27 sqq.) ; that he journeyed with him to Cyprus after the 
Apostolic quarrel (xv 39), and from Cyprus on a pioneer visit to Bithynia 
(which Paul s party were therefore inwardly warned to avoid), and thence 
joined the Apostle at Troas (Ac xvi 10). 

In conclusion we may shortly summarize the external evidence for the 
foregoing assumption of Lucan authorship an assumption 
evidence which is found, as Dr Chase observes (Credibility of the Acts : 
author C ship Hulsean Lectures 1900-1901, p. 10), in the second century, as 
soon as the Church began to possess a strictly theological litera 
ture, and was never disputed in early centuries, and practically finds no 
denial among serious scholars to-day. 

True, there is no Luke named in the two Books save in the title of the 
Gospel ; but all MSS from the earliest have this title, which 
f assumes that the me of Lk i 3 (and consequently the I of 
Ac i 1) refers to a person of that name. From Papias of Hiera- 
polis, who has famous utterances about the first and second Gospels, we have 
no mention of the third, or of St Luke. But this Silence of Papias means 
nothing more than that Eusebius, who preserves for us all of Papias that we 
have, does not happen to quote anything from him on this subject. 

The earliest direct and definite evidence is that of Irenaeus (Haer. Ill 
i 2), who, writing about A. D. 180, united in himself the tradition 
of Southern Gaul, of Rome and of Asia Minor, and ... as the 
1 For marks of Pauline influence see p. xxii, note 2. 


pupil of St Polycarp, was the spiritual grandson of St John. l Irenaeus is 

followed by Clement of Alexandria and Tertullian and the full line of Christian 

. writers ; but he is preceded by Justin Martyr (c. A. D. 150), who, 

without giving names, cites from Memoirs of the Apostles and 
those that followed them (Dial. Ill, cf. Apol. i 35) details peculiar to our 

Gospel such as the Annunciation, the Trial before Herod, and 

the Last Word from the Cross. Justin s pupil Tatian uses the 
third Gospel about A. D. 160 in Mesopotamia, weaving its substance, side by 
side with that of the first, second, and fourth, into his Diatessaron, or Har 
mony of the four Gospels. 

But our earliest witness of importance is some twenty years earlier still 
M . (c. A. D. 140). Marcion the heretic, who for doctrinal reasons 

rejected the other three Gospels, but adopted and adapted the 
third as most in harmony with his ultra-Pauline teaching on Grace and the 
free gift of Redemption. It is, perhaps, not without significance that Marcion 
hailed from Sinope in Bithynia, the province which the Praefatio connects 
with Luke s last years. 

Once the Lucan authorship has been admitted, and the identification 

made with the Luke of St Paul s Epistles, numberless points of 
Internal corroboration emerge : notably the medical language 2 and 

corroborates the many traces of affinity with St Paul. On the other hand, 

the Luke of the Pauline Epistles is not, as such, a person of 
sufficient fame or prominence for it to be likely that something like one-fifth 
of the New Testament should be ascribed to him without strong reasons. 

Finally, the admission of the common authorship of the third Gospel and 
the Acts, to which every argument of internal evidence dedication, language, 
style and vocabulary, outlook and tendency clearly points, intensifies the 
conviction that both of them come from the hand of Luke, Paul s physician, 
fellow traveller, and fellow worker ; and the occasional inconsistencies between 
the narrative of Acts and the Pauline Epistles, which make the story of the 
Apostle s life so difficult to trace out in detail, themselves tell in the same 
direction. At any rate, they would not have been deliberately introduced 
by a later pseudepigraphic writer of c. A. D. 100. 

II. Date and Circumstances of Writing of the Gospel 

We may take for granted that our third Gospel and the Acts come from 
one hand, and that we may without hesitation attribute them to their 
traditional author, the companion of St Paul. For the final establishment 
of this position we owe a debt of gratitude to Prof. Harnack and Sir W. M. 

Adolf Harnack, in his Lukas der Arzt (Leipzig, 1906), records his own 

1 Chase, loe. cit. 3 See p. xxix. 

L. b 


conversion, based on linguistic and literary grounds, to the view that the third 
Gospel and the Acts are a historical work written in two books, 
an( * written, as tradition says, by Luke the Physician, Paul s 

on that of fellow traveller and fellow evangelist. Ramsay in Luke the 
Physician and other works accepts Harnack s results (which in 
some parts he had anticipated) and goes farther. He brings archaeological 
evidence to bear, and demonstrates, to his own satisfaction, that Luke s 
history is true. If we inquire into the date of the composition of the Gospel, 
we must take into account, as a preliminary, the probable date of the Acts. 
In one sense the two may be said to form (with a slight overlapping, Lk xxiv 
13 sqq., Ac i 1-14) two volumes of a single work, designed to tell Theophilus, 
and with him, doubtless, other educated Gentiles : (a) the Gospel what Jesus 
began to do and to teach before His Ascension and (6) the Acts what 
He went on to do and to teach by and through His Pentecostal presence. 

Now there are signs that an interval of some years may have passed 

between the completion of the Gospel and that of the Acts. 
interval ai () ^^ overlapping. The end of the Gospel seems to 

suggest that nothing further is needed to complete the story. 
The way in which Ac i 1-14 covers again the old ground, with 
a difference, implies that in the meanwhile the author had learned more of 
the perspective of the Forty Days. 

(&) The vocabulary and style (see further, III), as patiently and ex 
haustively analysed by Sir J. C. Hawkins (Horae Synopticae, 1st ed., Oxford, 
Clarendon Press 1898), though offering no evidence for difference of authorship 
between the books, do evince such variations as might well be accounted for 
by lapse of time, and new experience and environment. 

To these some would add the difference between the two dedications. 

(c) Theophilus, in Acts, is no longer addressed as xpartcrre. Either the 
person addressed has completed his term of office, or St Luke has become 
more intimate with him, or Theophilus has in the interval been baptized and 
become a brother instead of His Excellency or both growing intimacy 
and Christian status may lurk behind this discarding of formality. 

Whatever weight is to be attached to this last consideration may be 
largely discounted if we accept the suggestion of Prof. Cadbury (Expositor, 
June 1921) that Theophilus is a well-disposed pagan official, and that the 
third Gospel is a Christian Apology, addressed to the ruling race in general 
(cf. note on i 3). 

We know of four pauses periods of comparative repose or stability ip 
St Luke s life after he emerges into our view as companion of St Paul, in Acts 

(1) at Philippi (? A. D. 60-55), (2) at Caesarea (A. D. 66-58), (3) at Rome 
Argument ! ? A- D 59 ~ 61) &nd (4) a ? ain at Rome ( ? A - D - 62-64). There 
dXe^Sdin ^ n traCe ^ Luke s ^ri^ng 8 f the martyrdom of his hero, 
of Actl" B St Paul > "niess the retention of the pathetic presentiment of 
Ac xxi 13 is such. (It has been argued that whereas St Paul 
did as a matter of fact visit Ephesus between his first and second Roman 


imprisonment, he would have expunged this reference had not his hero 
been dead when he published.) That martyrdom is usually assigned to 
A. D. 64-65. If it is inconceivable that he should have failed to mention 
an event of such significance to him personally and to posterity, we must 
posit the close of his literary activity (unless works of his are lost) before 

On the other hand, there are two sets of indications which would argue 
a later date : the evidence of ch xxi, and the supposed use of 

Arguments Josephus. 

for later date : 

Josephus Josephus, the historian of the siege and fall of Jerusalem 

in A. D. 70, wrote in the years 75-93. It has been claimed 
(chiefly owing to the mention of Theudas in Gamaliel s speech, Ac v 36 
identified by critics, but clearly not by Luke, with a later Theudas named 
in Jos. Ant. XX v i ; and the statement about Herod Philip in the 
Gospel, iii 2 see note there) that St Luke used Josephus s writings, and 
used them very carelessly. On both of these points especially the supposed 
identification of Theudas, one is tempted to quote a celebrated note of 
Harnack s. 1 The carelessness involved itself rules out the careful and 
accurate author of the third Gospel and the Acts. 2 

As to the argument from Lk xxi 20, that is more serious. Many 

moderate critics have seen there, and in xix 43 (see notes 
Jerusalem ^ ^ oc -) indications that the Gospel assumed its final form after 

the destruction of Jerusalem. Some critics, comparing the 
language St Luke puts into our Lord s mouth with that of the other 
Synoptists, roundly declare that it is a vaticinium post eventum that he 
must have written with a knowledge of the events after they occurred 
(on this compare Blass s counter-argument, referred to on p. xlii): others 
think that, in his interpretation of the phrases into language intelligible 
to Gentile readers, he was unconsciously influenced by the form events 
had already taken. This may be true, and yet leaves us with a date 
earlier than 70. Encircling armies and trenches, and razing of a rebellious 
city, would be a natural forecast for an intelligent man who could gauge the 
possibilities of Jewish insurgence some years earlier. There is, in fact, nothing 
peculiarly distinctive in the reference to encircling armies (xxi 20) ; and 

1 In an article on St. Felix and Regula in Spain I read (pp. 6 f.) as follows : 
If any one had anywhere read that in the 3rd decade of this [19th] century a 
pupil of the public school of Aarau, the eon of one Trumpi, a pastor in Schwanden 
[Canton Glarus], was drowned near Aarau when bathing in the Aar, and had 
afterwards read somewhere else that in 1837 one Balthazar Leuzinger, son of 
M. Leuzinger, the pastor in Schwanden, was drowned when bathing in the Aar close 
to Aarau, if the reader were at all of a critical turn of mind he would assuredly 
have drawn the conclusion that one and the same occurrence was evidently re 
ferred to in each case. . . . And yet it actually happened that two young natives 
of Glarus, both of them sons of a pastor in Schwanden, were drowned in the 
neighbourhood of Aarau [thus a long way from Schwanden]. Harnack, Acts, 
Eng. tr. 1909, p. 247 note. 

2 See Plummer, pp. xxxi-xxxii, also Bebb, St Luke s Gospel, in Hastings D.B. 
iii 168. 




a glance at the Septuagint shows that the earlier passage (xix 43, 44) reflects 
the siege phraseology of the Old Testament, and is remarkably paralleled by 
Ezek iv 2, with an added reminiscence of Ps cxxxvi 9 or Hos xiv 1 in the 
reference to the children. [See further, note on xix 43, 44.] Says an 
American writer (Shailer Matthew, Messianic Hope in New Testament, 
Chicago Univ. Press 1905) : That Jesus expected the fall of Jerusalem is 
beyond question. . . . This passage may have been sharpened up by Luke, 
but such a hypothesis is really gratuitous. Any picture of the doom of a city 
might easily run into the conventional picture of a siege (p. 230). Zahn 
(Introd. to N.T., Eng. tr., T. & T. Clark 1909, vol. iii) regards the date of 
the Gospel as entirely independent of the fall of the Holy City, but places 
it on other grounds somewhere between A. D. 67 and 90 after the other two 
Synoptics, and before the fourth Gospel. It may be well to remind ourselves 
(cf. Plummer, p. xxx) that these later dates even the extreme limit of 
A. D. 100-110 proposed by P. W. Schmiedel (Encyc. Bibl. 1792) are not 
inconsistent with Lucan authorship. 

But a late date for the Gospel means a still later date for the Acts (say, 
The close A - D - 75-85) ; and if we accept this late date, how are we 
of Acts to acc ount for the abrupt close of that book ? 

Is it dramatic ? the spiritual imperialist brought to the centre of world- 
empire and left there ? But would not his martyrdom have made a still 
more dramatic ending ? * 

Or did St Luke contemplate or even write a (now lost) third volume ? 

The most obvious (though not an absolutely necessary) inference from the 
abruptness of the ending is that the author finished writing at the end of 
St Paul s first Roman imprisonment. This date about A. D. 64 for Acts 
is accepted by one of the latest critics, Prof. C. C. Torry (see A. S. Peake s 
Commentary on the Bible, 1920, p. 742), who thinks that Ac i 1 xv 35 is 
Luke s translation of an Aramaic document which fell into his hands, and 
was supplemented (Ac xv 36 xxviii 30) by what was largely within his own 
recollection : that this book therefore was not, like the third Gospel, a work 
of great labour and research, but a comparatively simple task which might 
occupy a relatively short time. 

Provisionally accepting this date for Acts, we must find an earlier one 

Conclusion for the Go3 P e1 - 2 If Acts was brought out during the second 

imprisonment at Rome, the Gospel (at any rate in its earliest 

form 3 ) may well have been planned, meditated, and prepared for during the 

1 On the other hand, E. J. Goodspeed in an article on the Date of Acts 
in Expositor, May 1919, points out a parallel in Xenophon s Memorabilia. Xenophon 
never mentions there the death of Socrates, but explicitly refers to his condemnation 
to death. So the author of Acts does not record, but (in Ac xx) forebodes 
the death of his hero. If these forebodings had turned out to be groundless 
Luke, he suggests, would not have recorded them. 

. mentioning that Dr. Chase (The Gospels in the light of 

Historical Criticism, March 1914) has thrown out a suggestion of an earlier date 
for Acts than for the third Gospel. But this will not appeal to many. 
3 Cf. Canon Streeter s latest suggestion, p. xxiii, note 1. 


missionary years at Philippi (? 50-56), worked up, with important additional 
matter, at Caesarea (56-58), and, if not completed then and there, brooded 
over during the voyage and three months sojourn in Malta, and completed 
soon after arrival in the Eternal City. 

As a matter of fact the third Gospel, like the Acts, seems to show special 
traces of the Caesarean sojourn. But this brings us to the subject of Sources. 

III. Sources of the Gospel : Its relation to the other Gospels 

The third Gospel, like the Acts, shows marked traces of the sojourn of its 

author at Caesarea while St Paul was imprisoned there (A. D. 56- 

Palestine ^8 ?). At Caesarea, which as early as the tenth chapter finds 

o . prominent mention in the Acts, resided (Ac xxi 8) Philip, the 

Evangelizer of Samaria 1 (Ac viii ; cf. Lk ix 52, x 33 sqq., 

xvii 11 sqq.), and his prophetess daughters : interested doubtless in the 

women s side of the Gospel story (cf. Lk i ii, vii 11-17, vii 26-fin., viii 2, 

x 38-42, xviii 1-8, xxiii 27, xxiv 10, and below, p. xli) and able to give Luke 

access to some of the principal female characters in the great drama possibly 

even to the Blessed Virgin herself. 

How much of the special richness of St Luke s Gospel : the story of the 
Infancy (i ii), the Great Insertion recording a Galilean and Peraean 
Ministry of which the other Synoptists give scarcely a hint (ix 51 xviii 14) 
and the additional touches which the third Evangelist adds to the narrative 
of the Passion and Resurrection may be due directly or indirectly to Philip s 
household, it is impossible to say. Speaking of Acts viii and other matters 
Harnack says (Acts, Eng. tr. 1909, p. 245) : The whole of the phenomena 
seems to be best explained on the supposition that St Luke received from 
St Philip (or from him and his daughters) partly oral information, and partly 
also written tradition, which helped out the oral accounts. 

In any case his residence in Palestine seems to have given him access to 

documents in Hebrew and Aramaic (cf. the phenomena of 

Lk i ii and of Ac i xv) ; to some one Manaen (Ac xiii 1) or 

Joanna (Lk viii 3) or both familiar with Herod s Court (Lkiii 1, 19, viii 3, ix 7, 
xiii 31, xxiii 6-11, cf. Ac xii); possibly to the Lord s Mother (ii 19, 51), to 
either Mary or Martha of Bethany (x 38-42), and to that Cleopas from whose 
lips, it is reasonable to suppose, came the distinctive and vivid story of 
xxiv 13 sqq. These might be among the eyewitnesses of Lk i 2. 

Important as are the documentary sources of our Gospels (and to these 

we shall refer later on), we must give due weight also to the 
Source: Oral ., . . 

evidence of oral transmission, and by oral transmission we 

mean not only information gained from individuals, but changes in the 

1 Cf. Chase, Credibility of the Acts (Macmillan 1902). There were only two 
persons from whom the account of what took place on the road to Gaza could 
ultimately have been derived, Philip and the Eunuch. With the former the 
writer of the Acts stayed many days . . . (p. 20). 



narrative of well-known topics resulting from mission work, from oral cate- 
chesis, and the like. Sir John Hawkins sees distinct traces of this oral trans 
mission both in the different uses made of the same words and phrases in 
Matthew, Mark, and Luke, and in the transpositions of what are obviously 
the same words and sentences. In his second edition of Horae Synopticae 
(p. 217) he further expresses a strong opinion that St Luke and one of his 
fellow evangelists had provided themselves with written documents as their 
main sources, but that they often omitted to refer closely to them, partly 
because of the physical difficulties involved in studying roll-manuscripts 
(cf. Sanday, Studies in Synoptic Problem, 16 sqq.) and partly because of the 
oral knowledge of the life and sayings of Jesus Christ which they had previously 
acquired as learners and used as teachers, and upon which it would therefore 
be natural for them to fall back frequently. 

This oral knowledge we can picture St Luke augmenting during his sojourn 
at Philippi, by news from every boat that hailed from Palestine, welding it 
into shape in his own mission-work, and supplementing and completing it 
by the personal investigations of his stay at Caesarea. 

But there are clearly larger and more far-reaching documents lying behind 
the Gospel than those with which St Philip s household might 

Larger have supplied him. Among those of which he seems to have 

documentary \ r . . 

sources : made principal use are two : one familiar to us all, surviving 

Mark independently to this day ; the other a conjecture of critics 

which has so much to be said for it that it is spoken of almost 
as a certainty. These two are St Mark and Q. Mark (if he is really the 
author of the Gospel), the friend both of Peter (1 Pet v 13 l ) and of Paul 2 
(Ac xii 25, 2 Tim iii 11), must have been also the friend of Luke they are 
mentioned together in Philem 24. 

In this way Luke would have oral access to a living Mark a fact which 

might account for some of the phenomena studied by Sir John 

oral Hawkins ; and perhaps also for some Petrine touches (e. g. 

Mark enCet Lkv 4-11) which the second Gospel does not record. But that 
he and the author of the first Gospel actually had before them 

a Written Mark the Gospel we know, or an earlier edition of it 3 there 
can be no manner of doubt. They both repeat, almost word for 

Larger word, nearly the whole of its narrative. Most critics now accept 


sources : Q the second main source of Matthew and Luke, and call it Q 

(from Quelle = source). This source appears to have been a col 
lection of sayings, and is sometimes identified with the Xc5-yta or Oracles of the 
famous passage of Papias (ap. Eus. H.E. iii 39), in which he asserts that 
Matthew composed the oracles in the Hebrew language and each one inter- 

1 So Papias (ap. Eus. H.E. iii 39), calls him the interpreter of Peter. 

2 On Luke and Paul see IV, p. xxix ; the only direct debt to St Paul traceable 
in the third Gospel (except xxii 19, 20, see note there) is the special appearance 
to St Peter, Lk xxiv 34, 1 Cor xv 5. 

3 Possibly, e. g., omitting Mk vi 45 viii 26 and the last twelve verses (which 
seem partly dependent on Lk xxiv). 


preted them as he could. This original Hebrew Matthew, translated 
already into Greek, or some document of a like character, lies doubtless at 
the back of the many sayings of our Lord not recorded in Mark which are 
reproduced almost or exactly word for word in Matthew and Luke, but often 
in different contexts. Thus Q, though technically conjectural, has come to 
have in the minds of scholars a very positive existence. The contributors 
to the Oxford Studies in the Synoptic Problem, e. g., give us different fancy 
portraits of it, in most of which you can detect the features of the same 
sitter. Thus to Sir John Hawkins (pp. 108 sqq.) it is a document consisting 
mainly of records of discourses, extant largely, though not exclusively, in the 
double tradition of Matthew and Luke ; to Dr Allen (p. 242) it is a collec 
tion of Christ s discourses and sayings compiled to represent certain aspects of 
His teaching, and . . . marked by a very characteristic phraseology, while 
Canon Streeter (op. cit., p. 212) describes it as a selection, compiled for 
a practical purpose, of those words or deeds of the Master whicu would give 
guidance in the actual problems faced by Christian Missionaries. l A recent 
American writer (Prof. A. T. Robertson of Louisville, in Contemp. Rev., 
Aug. 1919) claiming for Q the position of the oldest document, draws out 
forcibly its testimony to the Divinity of Jesus, exhibiting the same essential 
picture of Jesus as the Christ that we find in the Gospels and St Paul s 
Epistles. The facts in Q are open and simple and beyond dispute. Jesus 
is ... Son of God, Son of Man. One may explain it as one will, but the fact 
remains. It is manifest that the impression made by Jesus during His 
ministry was all that the Gospels represent it to be. The heart of it all is in Q. 
But Q does not exhaust the non-Marcan sources of the first and third 
Gospels. In one great section these two Gospels at first sight seem to agree 
in supplementing St Mark each of them prefixes to the narrative of the 
Ministry an account of our Lord s Nativity and Infancy 

(^ at * " ^ * "^ ^ ut aS SOOn aS W6 ^^ * nt ^ two 
accounts, we find that they are independent to the point of 

seeming inconsistency ; though further consideration shows how they can 
be adjusted (see notes on ii 39). 

The whole relation of the first and third Gospels is one of extraordinary 

interest. The different grouping of the same items of which 

third Gospels tv pi ca l instances would be the Temptation (Mat iv 1 sqq., 

Lk iv 1 sqq.), the Beatitudes (Mat v 3 sqq., cf. Lk vi 20-23), 

and much of the matter which Matthew collects in his Sermon on the Mount 

(Mat v vii), but which in Luke is not only scattered, but often deliberately 

associated with separate contexts in the narrative. 

The Jewish tendency of the first Gospel is, to some extent, reflected in 

1 In Hibbert Journal. Oct. 1921 (vol. xx, pp. 103-12) issued while the present 
pages were in the press Canon Streeter develops his views further, holding that 
Q overlapped Mark more than has been hitherto realized, and arguing for an earlier 
edition of the third Gospel ( Proto-Luke ) consisting entirely of Q plus Lucan matter, 
issued at Caesarea c. A. D. 60, and re-edited some twenty years later by the Evan 
gelist, who then for the first time made some use of Mark. 



the Hebraistic tone of Lk i ii and Ac i xii, and in St Luke s obvious know 
ledge of the Septuagint. 1 In strong contrast to this is the general attitude 
of the unique Gentile contributor to the New Testament, which makes him 
omit, as uninteresting to the general reader, matters exclusively Judaic such 
as figure largely in Mat v 17 vii 42 and in Mk vii (though, historically, the 
historian of the Acts shows himself interested in a later form of the problem 
of unclean meats, Ac xv 29). 

Prof. Burkitt summarizes thus the differences between the use of Marcan 
material in the first Gospel and the third : The Gospel according to Matthew 
is & fresh edition of Mark, revised, rearranged, and enriched with new material ; 
the Gospel according tc Luke is a new historical ivork made by combining 
parts of St Mark with parts of other documents (Sources far the Life of Jesus, 
p. 97). Another writer (McLachlan, Luke, Evang. and Hist., pp. 10, 11) sums 
up the relation thus : Where Luke retains what he found in Mark, he 
improves him verbally without losing the picturesque vividness (as Matthew 
sometimes does) : but it is his additions to Mark that constitute his chief 
claim to love and reverence. 

The importance of our third Gospel for the Synoptic problem can hardly 
be over-estimated. But for St Luke, says Dr A. Wright (Diet. 

Third Gospel C. G., Luke, Gospel of), the Synoptic Problem would never 

and Synoptic . 

problem have existed, for the relations between St Mark and St Matthew 

are comparatively simple. 
Equally interesting, though less clearly definite, is the relation between 

the third Gospel and the fourth. Everything points to the 
fourth*" 1 * 1 fourtn Gospel being later than the Synoptics, and being de- 
Gospels liberately intended to supplement and, in places, correct the 

impression left by them. It is out of the question that St Luke 
should have had the text of St John before him inconceivable, especially, 
if we accept an early date for the third Gospel. Yet there are marked affinities 
between the two. Schmiedel (Encyc. Bibl, art. Gospels ), who characterizes 
the fourth Gospel as the earliest commentary on the Synoptists (p. 1766), 

Does John 8ayS * hat St J hn her6 and ther6 8tepS in tO correct St Luke 
correct Luke? where the latter alters the Synoptic tradition, or attempts to 

describe post-resurrection phenomena. Thus Jn xviii 13 may 
be a correction of Lk iii 2, and xviii 12 of Lk xxii 52 ; while in three places 
John substitutes an act for Luke s word : Lk xxii 27, Jn xiii 1-5 ; Lk xxii 32 
Jn xvii 15 ; Lk xxiii 44, Jn xix 30. 

In subject-matter one of the most striking points of contact is in the 
Points of mention of Mary and Martha (Lk x 38-42). The sisters, who 

live for us as few even of New Testament characters do find 
Mary and no mention outside these two Gospels. St Luke s mention is 

clearly independent of St John s. He does not state the name 
the village where they live. He makes no mention of their brother 

to have 



Lazarus, who is the pivot of the Johannine episode. But in a few telling 
words he draws their figures and distinguishes their characters so that we 
recognize them again when the fourth Gospel introduces them. 

Again, St Luke and St John alone among the Evangelists 
record our Lord s dealings with Samaritans. 

Here again the episodes are independent. St John s (ch iv) follows an 
early Judaean Ministry, for which at first sight the Synoptics appear to have 
no room. St Luke s (ix 50 sqq.) comes after the long Galilean Ministry. 
Here, perhaps, may be adduced the Miraculous Draught of Fishes which 
St Luke (according to one theory) reckoned rightly as a Galilean incident, 
and one closely connected with St Peter ; but, having no place for Galilee 
in his post-resurrection episodes (see note on xxiv 6), marshalled among his 
matter for the early days of the Ministry (ch v). 

Further, St Luke may be observed, on a close inspection (see notes on 
ix 50 sqq. ; x 38-42 ; xiii 31 sqq.) to allow place for more 
Ministry* parallels with the Johannine picture of the Ministry of our Lord 
(see further, below, VII). 

Slight traces appear (iv 44 note) of the possibility of an early Judaean 
Ministry ; and in the Great Insertion room may be found for those two 
visits to Jerusalem, which St John places between the Feeding of the Five 
Thousand and the Holy Week (see note on ix 50 sqq., p. 141). 

Finally, there is one disputed piece of narrative which might almost be 

said to bear unconscious testimony to the affinities between St Luke and 

St John. Many readers must have noticed the awkwardness 

Aduiterae pe with which Jn vii 53 viii 11, the Pericope Adulterae section on 

The Woman taken in Adultery is fitted into its context. 

Various expedients have, in consequence, been adopted by scribes and editors 

ancient and modern. 

The passage is omitted by nearly all the best- known MSS (including the 
Uncials Aleph, A, B, C, L). It has been placed by some editors at the end 
of the Gospel as a genuine fragment of which the right position is uncertain. 

One group of MSS (the so-called Ferrar Group ) places it in the third Gospel, 
following upon Lk xxi 38 (see note there). This transposition is accepted 
by F. Blass (cf. below, VI, p. xliii), and is brilliantly defended by McLachlan 
(St Luke, the Man and His Work, ch xiii, esp. pp. 281, 282). He examines 
and dissects the passage very minutely, and concludes : the entire narrative is 
indisputably Lucan in Vocabulary and in Spirit, the extraordinary verbal 
resemblances between St Luke s Gospel and the Pericope Adulterae cannot 
escape the slightest examination. The evidence of vocabulary is certainly 
very strong : the incident itself is typical of what St Luke loves to record. 
If we suspend our judgement as to the actual transposition we may still see 
one more evidence of the affinity between the third and fourth Gospels in the 
fact that generations should have accepted as part and parcel of the fourth 
Gospel a passage so intrinsically Lucan. 

And the fact that this affinity is difficult to account for directly there 



is no evidence of a personal meeting between the two Evangelists may itself 
be accepted as bearing significantly upon the truthfulness of the record of 
each, and linking, as has been said, the Synoptic picture of Christ with the 
Pauline and Johannine conception. 

In the account of the Passion itself St Luke alone of the Synoptista 
preserves words of Christ (xxii 27) which harmonize significantly 
a?d e ?i with St John s incident of the Feet-Washing ( Jn xiii 4-17), and 

Resurrection he alone> with the f ourt j 1 Evangelist, clearly indicates that the 
Crucifixion took place on a Friday. These two alone draw attention to 
the fact that Joseph s was a new tomb (Lk xxiii 55, Jn xix 41), and alone 
record the appearance to the Eleven on the first Easter night (Lk xxiv 33 sqq., 
Jn xx 19 sqq.). 

A recent writer has observed yet another link between them (Frederic 
Palmer, Amer. Jvurn. Theol. xxiii, July 1919). The Day of Pente- 
and the 8t cost > of which St Luke is the unique historian, and to which his 
spiritual Gospel (see below, V, p. xxxvii) may be said to lead up as to 
a climax, forms a link between the Synoptic and Johannine 
conceptions of Jesus. While in contrast with the Christ of Luke, who seems 
to place the resurrection and the moral assessment of mankind far away at 
the world s end, the Christ of John repudiates this view, and declares that 
he is himself the resurrection and the life, and that belief in him carries life 
with it immediately (p. 312), yet it is Luke who in his picture of the Descent 
of the Holy Spirit records the moment and the means by which the disciples 
became conscious of a real (though not corporeal) presence of the Master ever 
abiding with them. This conviction came to the disciples on the Day of 
Pentecost, and it changed the sphere in which the Master was present with 
them from an external to an internal one. It formed thus the transition 
from the Synoptic Conception of Jesus to that which was the basis of the 
Pauline and Johannine Conceptions (ib,, p. 304). 

IV. Language, and Style 

In dealing with language and style we must remember the object of the 

Gospels as such the main purpose of propaganda in the 
Form of A , ,., 

Gospels Mediterranean world. A modern American writer has so well 

their^pur^ose summarized this (C. W. Votaw, Amer. Journ. Theol. xix, Jan. 
1915) that it may be well to quote his words ; remembering 
always that the third Gospel is addressed primarily to a man of culture, and 
so is to some extent less popular in style than the others, though like 
them its speech is based on that lingua franca of Hellenistic Greek, on 
the character of which the papyrus discoveries are yearly throwing more 
light ; while its permanent attraction and appeal is probably greater than 
that of the other three. 

In comparison, says Votaw, with the elaborate literary productions 
of the Greeks and Romans, the Gospels were brief, special and popular 


writings. In extent a Gospel was about the length of a chapter in the large 
histories, or of an Essay in the ethical writings, or of a play in the Tragedies. 
In character it was a religious tract intended to promote the Christian move 
ment. In style it represented the popular spoken language of the common 
people, for the author was not a trained philosopher or a professional litterateur. 
The Evangelists produced their books for the simple practical purpose of 
preaching the Gospel to the Mediterranean world. They were writings of the 
people, by the people, for the people. They took on the characteristics which 
belonged to the Christian missionaries in their work. Their length and content 
and style were such as to make them efficient propagandist media among the 
masses of the Empire, who were in the main uneducated, poor, and obscure 
(op. cit., pp. 45, 46). 

St Luke s ultimate object is doubtless well expressed here. We conceive 
Luke a ^ m as c W ec ^ing material for his Gospel while engaged in keen 

versatile evangelistic work in the slums of Philippi : but the dedication 
of his book, the perfect Greek of his preface, and the fact that 
in culture he belongs to the same class as the philosopher and professional 
litterateur, mark him off in sharp contrast to his fellow evangelists. St Luke 
is, in point of fact, a stylist of great versatility, and one whose manner 
notably varies with his subject. He employs more classical words, and 
is more precise and accurate in his constructions than any other Evangelist 
(McLachlan, E. and H., p. 12). And while he can write the purest Greek, 
as in his preface, he can also develop at will a phraseology at least as 
. Hebraistic as that of the Septuagint, with which he shows 

and himself very well acquainted. It is noticeable that in the early 

chapters alike of the Gospel and of the Acts where, presumably, 
he is most dependent on Palestinian sources the Hebraistic style is strongest. 
It forms a striking contrast not only to the style of the short prefaces, but 
also to that of the later narratives of the two books. Yet withal it is worth 
remark that we pass without conscious effort from the one style to the 
other, from the Hebraic to the Hellenistic (V. H. Stanton, s.v. in Encyc. Brit.). 
In Ac xiii xxviii he is drawing mainly on his own experience. In the main 
body of the Gospel he again and again modifies and improves the phraseology 
found in St Mark often (as, e. g., in vi 6, viii 27, 55) for no apparent 
reason than that of taste in style. These phenomena, Sir William Eamsay 
notes (Luke, the Physician, p. 57), occur most frequently in the middle part 
of the Gospel. 

The Hebraistic quality of ch i ii presents peculiar features (see notes 
ad loc.), and there is some reason to infer that St Luke made use of written 
Hebrew sources, emanating from the circle of Simeon and Anna, Zacharias 
and Elisabeth, and the Blessed Virgin Mary, to whom he seems indeed to refer 
as to one from whom he had gathered material (see note on ii 19). 

In general, we may adopt Sir Wm. Ramsay s phrase (Lk. Phy., p. 50), The 
style of Luke s history is governed according to the gradual evolution of the 
Christian Church out of its Jewish Cradle. 


The same turn of mind which led our Evangelist instinctively to colour 
the different sections of the narrative suitably to their back- 
fnd arttstic ground, shows itself also in a sort of dramatic power, and an 
faculties artistic faculty of vivid graphic description the capacity to 
sketch a life-like picture in few words, and to bring out his figures into 
Rembrandtesque relief. Herein lies a mystical yet very real justification 
of the rather early tradition that St Luke was a painter who painted the 
Lord s Mother. 

The foundation of this tradition lies in a meagre extract from a Byzantine 
writer of the sixth century, Theodorus Lector (c. A. D. 518), preserved by 
Nicephorus Callistus (Migne, Patrologia Graeca, Tom. 86, Pars I, p. 166). 
There he speaks of the portrait (Vdfa) of the Mother of God which Luke 
the Apostle (sic) painted as sent with other relics by the Empress Eudocia, 
when on a pilgrimage to Palestine, to Pulcheria at Constantinople. 

Not a few pictures of the Blessed Virgin in early Byzantine style like 
the Madonna of the Borghese Chapel in Rome, sent by Luke from Jerusalem 
to Theophilus, and the Madonna di S. Luca of Bologna, brought, it is said, 
from Sta Sophia in 433 are still popularly attributed to the Beloved 
Physician ; while S. Marco at Venice claims (or claimed) to possess the 
actual picture mentioned by Theodorus Lector, pillaged from Constanti 
nople by the Doge Dandolo in 1204 (see further, Bolton, Madonna of St Luke, 
Putnam 1895). 

No one who reads St Luke s descriptions, for instance, of the birth and 
infancy and childhood of the Saviour can fail to see in him 
Christian Art a word-painter of exquisite touch and extraordinary skill. The 
pictures of Zacharias in the Temple, of the Annunciation, the 
Visitation, the Nativity, the Angels and Shepherds, the Presentation, the 
Finding in the Temple in these the Evangelist is a very fountain of 
Christian Art. And the like are to be found scattered all through the 
Gospel : from the picture of the Feast in Simon s House, the Parables of 
the Good Samaritan and the Prodigal Son, right on to the vivid sketches 
of the post-resurrection appearances of the Lord. Nor is it only in isolated 
pictures that his genius shows itself. We note the subtlety and skill with 
which he interweaves contrasted colours : the birth stories of John and 
Jesus, the character studies of Mary and Martha, the attitudes of the Pharisee 
and the Publican, the penitent and the impenitent Robber at the Crucifixion 
(cf. V. H. Stanton, s.v. in Encyc. Brit,). 

It has seemed appropriate from time to time, in notes upon the text, to 
make reference to some of the masterpieces of Art which St Luke s narrative 
has inspired. With the exception of St Matthew s Magi (Mat ii 1-12) 
surely the most Lucan story in existence outside our Gospel St Luke s 
word-pictures may be said to form the bulk of the evangelistic subject- 
matter of subsequent Christian Art. 1 

1 See Additional Note appended to this chapter : The Gospels in Art. 


As to the language and vocabulary of St Luke much has been written, 

and elaborate tabulations have been made, notably by Sir John 

and Hawkins (Horae Synopticae and Studies in the Synoptic Problem. 

Vocabu ary j, Qr & more summar y study, see Plummer, St Luke, Introd., 

pp. lii sqq.). Investigation shows a strong individuality in Luke, when 

compared with his fellow evangelists; great freedom of expression, an 

extraordinarily rich vocabulary. There also emerge, as we might expect, 

a striking number of expressions common (and peculiar) to 

St Luke and St Paul (see Plummer, pp. xliv, liv, and Moffatt, 

Introd. to Lit. ofN.T., p. 281). Dr Moffatt (cf. Hawkins, Hor. Syn., p. 197) 

quotes a number of typical instances where strong verbal or substantial 

parallels occur between the third Gospel and the Pauline Epistles. 1 Reference 

has been made to these parallels in the notes on the text. 

Paulinism in the sense of propaganda, as Moffatt rightly observes 

(I.L.N.T., p. 281), has no place in St Luke. The graciousness 
Graciousness v 

and umversahsm of the Gospel come straight from Jesus 

Christ ; but St Luke is an apt medium for this fitted alike by his own 
character and by his companionship with the Apostle of the Gentiles. The 
notes of joy and tenderness, and the burning love of sinful souls, are con 
spicuous in the two travelling companions. Some would see in a Pauline 
Collection emanating from the Apostle s entourage one of the definite 
Sources of the Evangelist, as does Dr A. Wright ( Luke Gospel of, in D.C.G., 
p. 88), who attributes to this source nineteen discourses in the Gospel, including 
the Parables of the Prodigal Son, the Good Samaritan, the Pharisee and 
Publican, and Dives and Lazarus. 

Tenderness and graciousness are near to humour, though not always 

associated with it in human temperament. A recent writer 

on the third Evangelist (McLachlan, St Luke, the Man and His 

Work, ch v), has entitled one of his chapters The Humorist, and devotes 
sixteen pages to this aspect, instancing in particular the Parables of the 
Unwilling Guests (xiv 16 sqq.) and the Friend at Midnight (xi 5 sqq.) see 
notes ad loc. If either of these Parables were already (as is suggested in 
Oxford Studies, pp. 134, 195) in Q, the source common to St Matthew and 
St Luke, it may argue the greater sense of humour in the third Evangelist that 
he did not feel called to omit them. McLachlan might have added references 
to St Luke s record of our Lord s irony, gentle (x 41) or severe (xiii 32, 33). 2 

The impression left by these pages is perhaps not altogether convincing, 
yet strong enough to establish, in a manner, the writer s contention. It is 

1 iv 32 =1 Cor 11 iv x 16 = 1 Thess iv 8 

vi3G = 2 Cor 13 xi 7 = Galvil? 

viii 12=1 Thess 16 xii 47 == 1 Cor iv 2 

x 8 = 1 Cor x 27 xx 38 = Rom xiv 8 

x 21 = 1 Cor i 21 xxi 24 = Rom xi 25 

2 The humour will, of course, be ultimately that of the Master : but the 

selection of it for permanent record and the phraseology of that record, the 
Evangelist s. (See notes ad loc. ) 


no outrage, assuredly, upon the seriousness and sublimity of St Luke. 
Humour, he says, is no surface quality of the mind ; it springs from deep 
sources, and pervades the whole being (p. 144). As another writer observes 
(Dr Reid, art. Humour in Encycl. of Religion and Ethics, vi 872-873), it is 
invariably associated with alertness and breadth of mind, a keen sense of 
proportion, and faculties of quick observation and comparison. It involves 
a certain detachment from and superiority to the disturbing experience of 
life. It appreciates life s whimsicalities and contradictions, recognizes the 
existence of what is unexpected or absurd, and extracts joy out of what 
might be a cause of sadness. . . . Humour is kindly, and in its genuine 
forms includes the quality of sympathy. All the qualities named above are 
on the very surface of St Luke s writing, and we shall not feel that we are 
guilty of impious rashness if we look for touches of humour in the picture of 
the man tucked up in bed with his children while the importunate friend 
comes rapping at the door, or in the crescendo of futile excuses put into the 
mouths of churls who have already tacitly accepted an invitation. This 
humour is a part of his story- telling power. He has a genius, says McLachlan 
(Luke, E. and H., p. 12), for producing effects by contrast and antithesis. 
Pathos and sadness blend with joy and gladness in his Gospel, giving the 
narrative an exquisite taste of bitter-sweetness. In many ways St Luke is 
the one New Testament writer most in harmony with the modern mind. 
St Luke has been called a Scientist ; and the truth that underlies this 

rather bold phrase gives, no doubt, an added touch to his 
Scientist modernness. He had, it is claimed (Ramsay, Luke the Physician, 

passim), the physician s mental training and faculty of diagnosis 
and deduction. This brings us to the question of the so-called Medical 
Language of St Luke. More than 600 years ago Dante emphasized the fact 
that the author of the Acts was of the fraternity of Hippocrates 

. . . alcun de famigliari 
Di quel sommo Ippocrate. 

(Purg. xxix 136-137.) 

But the theme of St Luke s Medical Language, though broached in 1751 by 
Medical Wetstein (Nov. Test. Graec. Tom. I, p. 643), and touched by 

Language a writer in the Gentleman s Magazine, June 1841, and doubtless 
by others, was first elaborated by the Rev. W. Kirk Hobart, LL.D. 
(Medical Language of St Luke, Longmans, London 1882). His starting- 
point was, of course, Col iv 14, Luke the Beloved Physician. It has been 
remarked (J. Vernon Bartlet, s.v. in Encyc. Brit.) that, with a very slight 
emendation, the earliest historical reference to the Evangelist outside the 
New Testament will bear its testimony to this identification. The Mura- 
torian Canon, in its Latin form, attributing both Gospel and Acts to Luke, 
goes on to say that Paul took him for companion quasi iuris studiosus" 1 as 
a Student of Law. In the original Greek we should only have to change one 
letter, and read NOZOY for NOMOY, and the Student of Law becomes a 


student of disease. Hobart observes at the outset the curious coincidence that 
all the extant Greek medical writings of antiquity (those of Galen, Dioscorides, 
Aretaeus, 1 and in a sense, Hippocrates) emanate, like the third Gospel, from 
Asia Minor and the Levant (op. cit., p. xxxi). He works steadily through the 
Gospels and the Acts, noting every word and phrase which is paralleled in the 
medical works of classical antiquity. As a result he claims (p. xxx) to have 
established : (a) that in describing pathological cases St Luke employs 
language that scarcely any one but a medical man would have used, and 
which exhibit a knowledge of the technical medical language which we meet 
in the extant Greek medical writers : and (6) that his general narrative, 
where there is no specific medical reference, exhibits words and phrases which 
were common in the phraseology of the Greek medical schools, and which 
a physician, from his medical training and habits, would be likely to employ. 
Harnack (Lukas der Arzt, Leipzig 1906) 2 and Zahn in Germany, and 
Sir W. M. Ramsay 3 in England, have warmly championed the general sound 
ness of Hobart s claims ; and, while discounting detailed items in his volu 
minous collection of words and phrases, have admitted the cumulative force 
of the evidence which he amassed. The subject is still warmly discussed 
to-day. An American critic, in a learned article on The Style and Method 
of St Luke (Cadbury, in Harvard Studies, vi, Harvard Univ. Press [and 
Oxford Press] 1920), subjects the alleged data to a most severe analysis. He 
brings forward nineteen examples of Medical Language in Matthew and 
Mark, absent from Luke, and endeavours to turn the tables by a hasty but 
brilliant examination, in Hobart s manner, of the language of Lucian (also 
an Asiatic Greek), from which he produces seventy-six words and phrases. 
He concludes (op. cit., p. 51), Luke the " Beloved Physician " and companion 
of St Paul may have written the two books which tradition assigns to him, 
though their Greek be no more medical than that of Lucian, the " travelling 
rhetorician and show-lecturer." But the so-called Medical Language of these 
books cannot be used as a proof that Luke was their author, or even as an 
argument confirming the tradition of his authorship. We are willing to 
admit, with Plummer (p. xiii), that this feature does not amount to a proof 
that he was a physician, and still less to a proof that it was St Luke. But 
we should claim that it has a confirmatory value, when such other evidence 
as exists is so strong in favour of the Lucan authorship. When all deductions 
have been made, writes Dr F. H. Chase (Credibility of Acts, Macmillan 1902), 
there remains a body of evidence that the author of the Acts naturally and 
inevitably slipped into the use of medical phraseology, which seems to me 
irresistible (pp. 13, 14).* 

1 Of these, Aretaeus and Dioscorides are more or less contemporaries of 
St Luke. 

2 Eng. tr., Williams & Norgate 1907. 

3 Luke the Physician. See esp. pp. 56, 57, where he summarizes six classes of 
evidence from the data all going to prove that the author was a physician. 

4 See also Moffatt, Intr. Lit. N. T., pp. 269, 298 sqq. 



The Gospels in Art 

Most of the inspiration and of the material for Christian Art throughout 
the centuries has been provided by the Synoptic Gospels, and among them 
conspicuously by the third. 

The fourth Gospel indeed has scenes of particular interest for the artu 
the Marriage Feast at Cana (ii 1), the Woman of Samaria (iv 7), the Miracle 
of Bethesda (v 2), the Raising of Lazarus (xi 43), the Washing of the Disciples 
Feet (xiii 5), the Ecce Homo, the Mater Dolorosa (xix 5, 25), and the 
< Noli Me Tangere (xx 17) but the fourth Gospel tells nothing of the Lord s 
Nativity and Babyhood ; and even its account of the Passion graphic, 
intimate, original as it is is matched if not surpassed as regards pictorial 
details by the Synoptic Evangelists. 

It is upon these two extremes of the Gospel story the Childhood and the 
Passion of our Lord that Christian Art has fastened from the first : and in 
these St Luke is supreme. 1 

No subject, of course, is more popular among painters than that of the 
Adoration of the Magi, with its extraordinary scope for gorgeous and imagina 
tive treatment, and here the source of inspiration is St Matthew. But when 
we remember that St Luke is our sole authority for the Annunciation, the 
Visitation, the Angels at the Nativity, the Manger- Cradle, the Circumcision, 
the Presentation, and the Boy-Christ among the Doctors, as also for the 
birth and childhood of the Forerunner, and the interweaving of the story of 
his infant life with that of the Saviour, we begin to realize something of the 
overwhelming debt of inspiration which pictorial Art owes to the third 
Evangelist. The countless representations of the Holy family and of the 
Madonna and Child, while they deal with subjects touched upon by two 
Evangelists, clearly draw their inspiration from St Luke, and afford a mystic 
justification to the tradition which attributed to his brush a portrait of the 
Mother of the Lord. 

The early Italian painters who, in spite of a crudeness of technique and 
a naive neglect of local colour in the scientific or historical sense, entered 
with remarkable sympathy into the spirit of the Gospel story, devoted them 
selves almost exclusively to the beginning and the end, the Childhood and the 
Passion. The scenes offered by the Ministry were, in general, only treated 

1 It is a pleasure to call attention to the educative work of Mr. Philip Lee 
Warner, who in recent years has produced in a form suited to children, in the 
splendid style of the Medici Society, two beautiful little collections of examples 
from the Old Masters, entitled respectively A Book of the Childhood of Christ 
(1915) and A Book of the Passion of our Lord (1916). In the former 9 out of 13 
are Lucan subjects, and 7 exclusively Lucan : in the latter 11 are Lucan subjects, 
though all, except the Agony, are common to the Synoptists. In the notes, pictures 
reproduced in these volumes are referred to as P. L. W. 

Reference has also been given in the notes to Christian Art, bv Mrs Henry 
Jenner, Methuen 1906, and to The Gospels in Art, Hodder & Stoughton 1904. But 
nothing has superseded the works of Mrs Jameson, to which the reader is constantly 
referred : especially History of Our Lord, 2 vols., Longmans (2nd ed. 1890) and 
Sacred and Legendary Art, 2 vols., Boston, Houghton & Muffin (n.d.). 


by those who, like Giotto (at Padua) and Fra Angelico (at Florence), set 
themselves to portray in fresco the entire Gospel narrative. The poten 
tialities of artistic inspiration in the narrative of St Luke are strong throughout 
the whole work, and especially in the parts peculiar to himself. Here and 
there they were seized upon by Renaissance painters ; Paolo Veronese and 
Titian, for instance, discovered in the Feast of ch vii congenial opportunities 
for display of vast spaces, of grouping and of rich colour. But the touching 
scene of the Widow s Son at Nain, the parabolic trilogy of ch xv, and the 
sequence of Parables in ch xvi xviii have been left, for the most part, to 
seventeenth- century and modern Art to attempt. We have to wait for 
Rembrandt for a study of the Good Samaritan and the Prodigal Son. An 
exception is the Good Shepherd (see note on xv 9), a subject which, though 
neglected by Mediaeval and Renaissance painters, held a very high place in 
the earliest Christian Art. 

With Palm Sunday and the Passion we get a wealth of representations, 
ancient, mediaeval, renaissance, and modern : and the independence of the 
Lucan Passion-Narrative (to which attention is called in the note on p. 247) 
here bears its fruit. The popular Stations of the Cross, which form an 
invariable feature of the furnishing of Continental Churches, owe at least one 
member of the series the Address to the Daughters of Jerusalem to our 
Evangelist, while the majority (in so far as they have Scriptural foundation) 
are shared by him with his fellow Synoptists. 

And St Luke also has a preponderant share in the inspiration of those 
Fifteen Mysteries of the Faith which form the Rosary, and are so graphically 
if crudely represented by the terra-cotta groups in Pilgrimage Chapels 
characteristic of the Italian Lake District. The Joyful Mysteries are almost 
entirely Lucan, and the Sorrowful and Glorious (again, so far as they 
are Scriptural), if not individual to him, in many cases derive some special 
and distinctive feature from his narrative. Here we may note that when 
St Luke shares a subject with other Evangelists, some exclusively Lucan 
trait has fixed itself in the memory of the painter, proclaiming the actual 
source of his inspiration. Typical instances are the Baptism, in which is 
almost invariably introduced the visible form of the Dove, and the Agony 
in the Garden, where the strengthening angel appears to the kneeling Lord 
(see notes on iii 22 and xxii 43). 

Modern religious Art, since Tissot, has taken a new turn, and aims at 
being at once devotional and realistic. In devotional intensity it can never 
hope to out-do the great Masters of the past. But its carefully thought-out 
scientific realism can make vivid the actual scenes of the wondrous Incarnate 
Life to a generation impatient of anachronisms. We may venture, however, 
to predict that whatever different phases religious art may assume in the 
future, St Luke will always hold his own. For he is essentially an artist 
among artists, and his word-pictures lend themselves uniquely to translation 
into line and colour. 



V. Characteristic Features of the Third Gospel 
Some of the characteristic features have already been noted above, I, 
where we were treating of the author, his sources, and his style, and others 
will emerge when we come to consider his outline of our Lord s Ministry, and 

the form and structure of his Gospel. But there are two aspects 

Two aspects : of this Book which we may perhaps term the Scientific and the 

S)l C pfiitia C l Spiritual, under which its outstanding characteristics may be 

conveniently grouped. The Scientific aspect we would 
designate that in which his previous training as a physician and his undoubted 
gifts as an historian have play ; by the Spiritual, that which gives scope for 
his artistic and imaginative gifts, his vivid sense of the supernatural and of 
the natural those gifts which fit him to be the chronicler of Pentecost, while 
they make his Gospel, in its many-sided interests and sympathies, the most 
human of the four the work of a man who might truthfully have said : 
Homo sum, humani nihil a me alienum puto. 

(1) Scientific. We cannot claim for the Beloved Physician of Col iv 14 

that his theory or practice was scientific according to modern 
d) Scientific standards or in the modern sense. But post- Baconian science 
The Physician is not a creation out of nothing. Remarkable and revolutionary 

as have been its results, it was built upon foundations laid by less 
favoured generations. A civilization that could produce an Aristotle and 
a Hippocrates was not without a very real tradition of patient investigation, 
collection and co-ordination of facts, keen and practised habit of observation, 
capability of weighing evidence, and that power of intuition which is, after 
all, one of the scientist s most valuable assets in all ages. We may claim for 
the physician of the first century A. D. that though his range was very limited 
(especially on the surgical side) compared with our own ; though the traditions 
of his art were doubtless full of superstitious and mistaken elements, yet the 
basal qualities of what we call the scientific mind were there. He had the 
experience, the habit of thought which we call scientific. With modern 
knowledge, modern methods, and modern appliances he might have been 
as brilliant as the most illustrious of our scientists. 

Again, we cannot claim for him the position of a scientific historian 
of to-day. Historical method has developed enormously during our own 
lifetime ; historical data are more generally accessible, and a new standard 
of historical writing has emerged. But without declaring him a first- 
century Mommsen it is not absurd to claim for the Physician-Historian of 
antiquity qualities that would fit him, if he had all the advantages of our 
time, to vie with and to outstrip many of the best historians of our age. 

Such qualities his Preface claims for him. Prominent among them and 

typical of them is that of patient historical investigation. We 
Investigation sna ^ expect to find this, and the other characteristic notes of 

the Book, most prominently expressed in the new items which 
he introduces into the Gospel, the Preface and the Gospel of the Infancy 


(i ii), the Great Insertion (ix 51 sqq.), and the special features of the 

The claim of St Luke s Preface implies a careful study and orderly mar 
shalling of facts, and suggests that he had access to numerous 
Dedication & Gospels not now extant. So he raises in us an expectation, 

which at once finds a partial fulfilment in the synchronisms of 
ii 1, 2 and iii 1, 2 (see notes ad loc.). The writer, who, in his later volume, has 
reproduced the phrase this thing hath not been done in a corner (Ac xxvi 26) 
attempts, at any rate, to fit his narrative into its right place in the scheme 
of the world s history. He is no mere story-teller or local annalist. Sir 
William Ramsay s studies on the Acts have gone far to vindicate its author s 
historical honesty and accuracy where it can be tested by archaeological 
evidence ; such archaeological evidence bears like witness for the Gospel 
where it can be had (see reff . above), and affords a presumption to the same 
effect where means of testing are not forthcoming. 

Yet an examination of the points in which the third Gospel varies from 

the other Synoptists affects different minds in different ways. 
Is the claim Some, like a recent American writer (C. W. Votaw, in Amer. 
justified? Journ. ofTheol. xix 45 sqq., June 1915), hold that St Luke does 

not fulfil the promise of his Preface ; that he borrows his frame 
work from Mark, and from the historical point of view does not improve it, and 
that while the non-Marcan material he uses in common with Matthew may in 
some cases and features be more historical as given by Luke, his own special 
contribution massed in the second third of the Gospel does not particularly 
indicate superior historical investigation or arrangement (pp. 47, 48). The 

Great Insertion (Lk ix 51 xviii 14) at first sight certainly 
of Lkix 5*1 a leaves an impression of chronological vagueness and loose logical 
xviii 14 sequence such as would almost justify those who are inclined to 

Arbitrary regard it as a dumping-ground for a mass of undated and 

uncontexted material. Even Dr Stanton (The Gospels as His 
torical Documents, vol. ii, p. 230) thinks that St Luke is here borrowing largely 
from Q, and that the allusions to journeyings (ix 51, &c.) are a justifiable 
device by which he transforms material consisting largely of sayings and 
discourses into a narrative of travel, and so fits it for inclusion into a work 
of history. 

In a somewhat similar way another writer (Blair, Apostolic Gospel, p. 157, 

quoted by Moffatt, I.L.N.T., p. 276) compares the traditional 
Trans- ^ evangelist-painter to a skilful gardener, and his two digres- 
Incidents eions (vi 12 viii 3 and ix 51 xviii 14) to beds of transplanted 

flowers the flowers being logia or discourses taken out of Q. 
They are arranged with skill, he says, and fragrant in their beauty, but 
their original context is undiscoverable. 

Such reflections as these, though they may discount the detailed accuracy 
of the Evangelist where accuracy was perhaps unattainable concede to 
him at least the instincts of a true historian face to face with the task of 



marshalling chronologically a mass of material quite intractable from that 

point of view. And though his flair for arrangement may be un- 
Use of < Q In doubted, we should not claim for it infallibility. We should be 
amTLuke loth, indeed, to count his Great Sermon in the Lesser Insertion 

(vi 17-49, see note ad Joe.) as a thin and attenuated shadow of 
St Matthew s Sermon on the Mount regarding the latter rather as the 
product of generous grouping or the scattered parallels to St Matthew v vii 
in the Great Insertion as arbitrary excisions from a continuous discourse ; 
we might yet expect that here and there St Matthew would have hit upon 
the truer and more logical context for one or other of the Q discourses which 
both Evangelists have embodied. 

However, there are not wanting in the Great Insertion more definite 

indications of the compiler s skill and trustworthiness. In the 
Positive in- fi rs t place the teaching of this period is, in general, suited to the 
tmstworthi- latter end of the Ministry, where St Luke places it. It may be 
i?f 51 xviii 14 (as Dr Stanton, loc. cit., suggests) that in the document or 

documents from which he drew St Luke found the more general 
teaching of wider application first, and second, warnings of sufferings and 
prophecies of the end. If he found this arrangement he has been wise enough 
and honest enough not to upset it. Secondly the vagueness itself which 

pervades these chapters has a witness to bear. It may be argued 
Reserve 8 ^ rom *^ e verv reserve f St Luke in handling his material both 

in the matter of chronology and in that of perspective that his 
historical honesty displays itself where he seems most open to criticism. The 
elusiveness of his time-references in this section will be due to an unwillingness 
to dogmatize where he does not know, to define where he has not complete 
material for definition. To the remarkably unconscious way in which his 
Gospel seems to form a link between the Synoptics and the fourth, and so, in 
a sense, receives corroboration from the latter, we have already referred (see 
p. xxiv sq.). 

If it is true that St Luke has been found remarkably accurate where we 

can test him, are we not justified (with Ramsay and his school) 

In whcit sense 

Luke a in assuming his accuracy where no full test is possible ? Though 

ifistorisui he was not a first - centur y Mommsen (and even Mommsen 
himself was neither infallible nor free from disturbing prejudice !) 
if he had been, he would have been a monstrosity yet we may 
claim for him the scientific spirit in so far as it was existent in his 
century, and recognize in him a keen eye for historical relations, an industrious 
amassing and arranging of material which will carry him behind and beyond 
the traditional limits of the Marcan Gospel (cf. i 3), both in the beginning 
(i and ii) and the end (xxiv 12-52) and in the large section (ix 51 xviii 14) 
in which he expands, as it were, Mk x 1. 

One other aspect of St Luke s work may be touched upon here before we 
turn to the spiritual and artistic aspect of his work. The ideal historian 
should be, among other things, a competent translator, and St Luke certainly 


at times translates. We have noted elsewhere ( IV, Language and Style, 
p. xxvii above) the way in which his style varies from that of 
^ Uke uu Xenophon to that of the Septuagint. This almost certainly 

implies not only a keen eye to colour and background, but a modi 
cum of definite translation. How much of his matter is directly rendered 
from Aramaic or Hebraic documents it may be difficult to decide ; but 
the Hebraistic tone of chs i and ii, of passages like ix 43 sqq. and xiv 1-6 
(see note), and of much of the earlier half of Acts, suggests a very strong 
probability of such translation, and in some cases, like those of the Songs 
of the Holy Nativity (chs i and ii, see notes), the phenomena are such as 
almost to demonstrate a faithful and very able rendering from a Hebrew 
original. On this subject Prof. C. C. Torry remarks ( Facts and Fancies in 
Theories concerning Acts, in American Journ. ofTheol., vol. xxiii, pp. 62-64, 
Jan. 1919) : Luke, like all the best translators of his day, is cautious and 
reliable barring the inevitable slips, which are likely to be of the greatest 
value to us. His procedure in the Gospel and the Acts does not necessarily 
afford an index of the relative importance to him of the documents he was 
rendering ; he and his fellows would have pursued the same method if the 
texts in hand had been of minor interest. ... It seems to me . . . that he 
conceived his duty to be that of a collector of authentic Palestinian records, 
by translating which he could give Theophilus and his like a trustworthy 
account the best native Palestinian account of the Christian beginnings. 

(2) The Spiritual Aspect. When we consider St Luke s selection of 
material, and the way he has handled it, we notice at once 
Spiritual a marked blending of the natural and the supernatural : a 
Aspect blending which we may find also in St John, yet not pre- 

St Luke and sented in quite the same way. While St Luke s Eschatology in 
common with that of the other Synoptists, in contrast to that 

* tne fourth Gospel, is of a remote and catastrophic kind, the 
other world won( j er s he records are not (as by St John) specified as signs . 
The other world seems in his Gospel unobtrusively to interpene 
trate this, in a way at once less and more impressive than that of the fourth 

The key to this lies, surely, in the fact that the author of the third Gospel 

is also the historian of Pentecost. The activity of the Holy 

?entecast f Ghost recorded in this Gospel from the very first, 1 while it 

recalls the special movements of the Spirit of the Lord in the 

Old Testament (e. g. Num xi 25, Judg xi 29, xiii 25), leads up naturally, at once 

to the presence predicted in Jn xiv xvi and to the phenomena of Ac ii sqq. 

The prominence of the Holy Spirit in the third Gospel (Lk 17 times, 

Mat 9 times, Mk 6 times) welds the Gospel and the Acts together, and makes 

it reasonable to suggest that the climax of this book is found not so much in 

the Lord s Ascension (Lk xxiv 50-53) as in the Descent of the Holy Ghost 

(Ac ii). 

1 See i 15 and note there. 




The Holy Spirit Himself dominates the entire story, and notably those 
portions which are peculiar to St Luke. It is foretold of the 
St Historian Forerunner before his birth that he shall be filled with the Holy 
f e tfaeHoty an Ghost (i 15). The Holy Ghost is to come upon Mary that 
she may play her great part in the world s redemption (i 35). 
Elisabeth (i 41), Zacharias (i 67) are filled with the Holy Ghost, and Simeon 
(ii 25, 27) is in the Spirit, and so they are enabled to utter their inspired 
Songs of the Holy Nativity. All three Synoptists mention the Holy Spirit 
at our Lord s Baptism, as also John s prediction of a Baptism with the Holy 
Ghost, and the Spirit s leading or driving of Jesus into the wilderness. 
St Luke, however, lays emphasis on the vividness of the Baptismal appearance 
(iii 22), and on His continuous presence with the Tempted in the wilderness 
(see note on iv 1). He also tells us that it is in the power of the Spirit that 
He commences His Galilean mission (iv 14), and The Spirit of the Lord is 
upon me is the text of His first sermon at Nazareth (iv 18). In St Luke s 
special contribution, ix 51 xviii 14, there are two significant references ; 
where, in x 21, we are told that Jesus rejoiced in the Holy Spirit, and in 
xi 13 it is The Holy Spirit that is offered in answer to prayer, while 
St Matthew has simply good things (Mat- vii 11). 

Thereafter no direct mention of the Holy Spirit occurs in this Gospel, 
though He is clearly indicated in the phrases Promise of the Father and 
Power from on high in xxiv 49. 

But the influence of the idea is by no means confined to direct mention. 
The brooding of the Holy Ghost over this Gospel is seen in 
teristics de- tnree special features at least which distinguish it from its 
pendent on companions : (a) a prominence of the Spirit-world of Angels ; 
(b) an atmosphere charged with those qualities summarized by 
St Paul as the Fruit of the Spirit. and (c) a special emphasis on Prayer. 
(a) Angelic missions have prominence especially in St Luke s early chapters, 
and he is the only Evangelist who mentions an Angel s name 
World 6 Angel " (i 19, 26). In the presence of these heavenly visitants the Spirit- 
world intrudes itself into the ordinary and domestic life of 
Zacharias at Jerusalem, of Mary at Nazareth, and of the Shepherds at Bethle 
hem ; a naive blending of the natural and supernatural which is characteristic 
of our Evangelist, and has made his angels very favourite subjects of Christian 
Art. The naivete of a Giotto, e. g., can catch by a natural sympathy the 
serene beauty and dignity of such an angelic intrusion free from all hint 
of melodramatic excitement. 1 

Outside the Gospel of the Nativity St Luke (who, curiously, omits mention 
of angelic ministrations after the Temptation) pictures to us the Angel in 
Gethsemane 2 and the two men at the Empty Tomb, xxiv 4, as in Ac i 10 
at the Ascension. 

1 See Ruskin, Giotto and His Works in Padua, Nos. xiv, xv (London, George 
Allen 1905). [Library Edn. (George Allen 1906), vol. xxiv, p. 67.] 
3 If the reading is correct in xxii 43 (see note them). 


(&) Not only does the Spirit-world intrude naturally and unobtrusively 
into the natural, but the whole atmosphere of the latter is 
^FrS C of the char g ed ^th the virtues of Gal v 22, 23, the Fruit of the Spirit. 
Spirit Each of these virtues finds special exemplification in St Luke s 

exclusive matter. Love (vii 47), Joy (i 14 and passim), Peace 
(ii 14, 29), Longsuffering (xv 20), Beneficence (x 33 sqq.), Goodness, Faith 
fulness, Meekness, Self-control, in the pious group of Chasidim introduced to 
us in the first two chapters. One of these virtues, Joy, is so specially character 
istic of St Luke that it calls for fuller treatment. 

The third Gospel begins (i 14) and ends (xxiv 52) on the note of joy, to 
which St Luke s Hellenic spirit lacking the stern puritanism of the Jew 
gave him, no doubt, a natural disposition. But though indeed he seems to 
delight in natural enjoyment and the festive side of life he alone records 
three instances of Pharisaic hospitality (chs vii, xi, and xiv), and our Lord s 
special teaching on hospitality to the poor (xiv 12 sqq.) yet the joy that 
suffuses his narrative is more particularly that special quality, itself the gift 
of the Holy Ghost, which must have been developed in him by companionship 
with the converted Pharisee. St Paul s utterances on the subject might well 
form a motto for this Gospel : the Rejoice in the Lord of Phil iii 1, iv 4 ; 
the Filled with the Spirit . . . singing and making melody with your heart 
of Eph v 18-20 ; the Rejoice alway ; pray without ceasing; in everything 
give thanks of 1 Thess v 16-18. 

The joy foretold at the birth of the Forerunner (i 14), and exemplified 

later in Zacharias s burst into song (i 68 sqq.), is followed by the 

rejoicing in God the Saviour of the Blessed Virgin (i 47). In 

the next chapter the Angel announces great joy to all people in the ears 

of the Shepherds (ii 10) and an angelic choir bursts forthwith into the Gloria 

in Excdsis : nor is the melody finished till the Presentation in the Temple 

has evoked the Nunc Dimittis (ii 29). 

Gladness marks the beginning of the Ministry in Galilee (iv 15) and at 
Nazareth (iv 16 sqq.), though soon to be swallowed up in jealousy and op 
position. In the midst of controversy, at the healing of the paralytic, en 
thusiastic wonder seizes the crowd (v 26), even as in the later days when 
hostility was become stronger and more bitter, a burst of joy hails the healing 
of the bowed woman (xiii 17). 

In the Great Sermon, where our Lord is imparting to His disciples the 
secret of joy that can meet trials serenely (cf. Mat v 12), St Luke has a specially 
strong expression leap for joy (vi 23). In the Story of the Mission of the 
Seventy (ch x) three notes of joy are struck the joy of the Missioners on 
their return (x 17), and our Lord s indication of a surer joy than that of obvious 
success (x 20), and the statement that in that same hour he rejoiced in 
the Holy Spirit (x 21) not found in the parallel passage of St Matthew 
(xi 25). 

The chapter of sublime teaching in which a trilogy of evangelical parables 
is grouped together has as its theme and its refrain the joy of heaven over the 


penitent (xv 7, 10, 32) ; the only element in it the Parable of the Lost Sheep 
which St Matthew preserves (xviii 12-14) he gives in a different context. 

As the end draws near, St Luke records, most characteristically, the joyful 
welcome (xix 6) of Zacchaeus to his self-invited Guest ; and after the un 
relieved gloom of the days when the Bridegroom was taken away (v 35) 
he sets before us on Easter Day the burning hearts (xxiv 32) of the two 
disciples, the incredulous joy of the Eleven (xxiv 41) ; and finally the 
mighty joy with which the worshippers returned to Jerusalem after the 
Ascension (xxiv 52). 

St Paul, who, in Gal v and elsewhere, shows us Joy as an inevitable fruit 
of the Spirit, is no less emphatic as to the intimate function of 
the Spirit in the life of Prayer both as the Spirit of sonship in 
us (Rom viii 15) and as interceding within us and voicing our best prayer- 
self (viii 26 sqq.). 

It would be natural, then, that the prominence of the Holy Spirit in our 
Gospel should be accompanied by a prominence of the subject of Prayer ; and 
this is conspicuously the case. 

There are, in fact, no less than seven instances in which St Luke alone 
tells us that Jesus prayed : at His Baptism (iii 21) ; before His first 
encounter with the Pharisees (v 16) ; before choosing the Twelve (vi 12) ; 
before the first prediction of His Passion (ix 18) ; at the Transfiguration 
(ix 29) ; before giving His disciples the Lord s Prayer (xi 1), and 
twice upon the Cross (xxiii 34, 46). He alone records the Lord s special 
prayer for St Peter (xxii 32), and His injunction at the entrance to 
Gethsemane (xxii 40), Pray that ye enter not into temptation ; and the 
teaching on Prayer given in the two Parables of the Friend at midnight 
(xi 5-8) and the Unjust Judge (xviii 1-8) ; both lessons of importunity, 
of earnest perseverance, and the second with its moral overtly stated, always 
to pray and not to faint. 

Universal sm ^ ne ^ urt ^ er characteristic of the third Gospel associates itself 
intimately with the Holy Spirit : its Universalism. 

Compared with the other Synoptists St Luke, the Gentile follower of the 
Apostle of the Gentiles, the historian of the great day when the Spirit was 
(potentially) poured out on all flesh (Ac ii 17), strikes a clearer universa- 
listic note. Without any trace of hostility to Judaism, he omits matter like 
Mat vii 17 sqq. and Mk vii 8-23 abstrusely connected with Jewish Law ; 
though familiar enough with the Greek of the Old Testament to adopt its 
style at will, he does not, like St Matthew, adorn his narratives with proof- 
texts from the Hebrew Prophets. The apparent contempt of the Gentile 
embodied in the incident of the Syro-Phoenician Woman may have influenced 
him in eliminating it from his story (see preliminary note on iv 14 ix 50), while 
he alone adduces our Lord s teaching drawn from that most liberal docu 
ment of Old Testament history, the story of Elijah and Elisha (iv 25-27). 
Apart from the question of Jew and Gentile, where his blood would naturally 
range him on the more liberal side, there are numerous features in his Gospel 


which argue a wide outlook, insight, and sympathy. The fitting of the Gospel 
story into the framework of universal history (ii 1, 2, iii 1, 2) ; the original 
touch by which he traces the Saviour s pedigree beyond Abraham to Adam, 
the son of God (iii 38), the common ancestor of mankind ; the kindly 
references to Samaritans (ix 51-56, x 30-37, xvii 16), the intensified enforce 
ment of the Synoptic picture of Jesus as the friend of social outcasts (vii 37 sqq., 
xviii 9 sqq., xix 2 sqq., xxiii 39 sqq.) ; the special interest in the poor (i 52, 55, 
vi 20, xiv 13 sqq., xvi 20 sqq. ), x and in the rich ( viii 2, 3, xix 2 sqq., xxiii 50), and 
in the temptations and problems of wealth (xii 16-21, xvi 1-12, xvi 19 sqq.), 
the domestic tone which, from the first scenes at Nazareth and Bethlehem, 
runs through the Gospel ; his special interest in women and children, all 
exhibit the same width of sympathy. 

The prominence of Womanhood in the third Gospel is indeed so marked 
as to constitute a special feature by itself. From the first, 
The Gospel woman takes her place in the foreground of the sacred artist s 
hood pictures, the Blessed Virgin, and Elisabeth, and Anna in that 

part which precedes the Marcan narrative ; and in the Story of 
the Ministry, a whole gallery of portraits unknown to the other Synoptists the 
forgiven sinner (vii 37 sqq.), the ministering ladies (viii 2, 3), the Widow of 
Nain (vii 11 sqq.), Mary and Martha (x 38 sqq.), the infirm woman (xiii 
10 sqq.); the Housekeeper of the Parable (xv 8 sqq.); the Daughters of 
Jerusalem (xxiii 27 sqq.) ; and Joanna among the Women at the Tomb 
(xxiv 9). Luke, if we may believe tradition, died in old age, without wife 
or child ; but, like his Lord, he knew how to honour womanhood, the insight 
which he received from the Holy Ghost crowning a natural gift of discerning 
sympathy which his medical practice would have developed beyond man s 
ordinary range. 

VI. The Text 

It is not our purpose here to enter deeply into questions of textual 
criticism : that side of the subject may be profitably studied in C. H. Turner s 
excellent summary in Murray s Diet. Bibl. (art. N.T., Text of) and the 
volumes there suggested for reference. 

This Gospel is found, wholly or in part, in eleven primary and seven 
secondary uncial MSS ; in a vast number of cursives and in twelve im 
portant ancient versions. It shares its textual history and its transmission, 
for the most part, with the other three canonical Gospels, though it has not, 
so far, the vaunt of a third- century fragment from the Oxyrhynchus Papyri. 2 
But in one respect, in common with St Luke s other work, it presents unique 
problems on the textual side. In the third Gospel and the Acts the celebrated 
Codex D , the uncial MS presented in 1581 by Theodore Beza to the 

1 This characteristic has led some to describe St Luke s as an Ebionite 
Gospel emanating from the primitive Christian sect of Ebionim or Poor 
Men (cf. Hastings D.B., s.v.) : how wrongly the whole tenor of the Gospel 
shows (cf. Adeney, Introd. in St Luke, Century Bible, p. 11). 

2 There is one extant for Mat i 1-9, 12, 14-20 (see C. H. Turner, loc. tit., p. 587). 


University of Cambridge, presents far more and more significant variations 
from the consensus of the other uncials than it does in any other part of the 
New Testament. These variations take the prevailing form of additions to 
the text of the Acts and of omissions from the text of the Gospel, though the 
few additions in the latter case are not without significance. 

It is this fact which has led a recent writer to assert that the greatest 
textual discussion of the present day springs out of the witness of the Lucan 
writings (McLachlan, St Luke, Evang. and Hist., p. 14). 

These phenomena of the Western text 1 of D, in so far as they took the 
form of additions, were largely rejected by Westcott and Hort as corruptions : 
to the omissions, which are very significant, more respect was paid. 

The first great champion of the importance of D as a positive factor was 
Professor Friedrich Blass of Halle-Wittenberg, whose results are accessible 
in English in his translated work, The Philology of the Gospels (Macmillan 
1898). His conclusions have been accepted with reserve and caution in 
England, and more readily with regard to the Acts than to the third Gospel 
(see Bebb, in Hastings D.B. iii 164) : but Blass has his followers here, notably 
Herbert McLaohlan, Warden of the Unitarian Home Mission College at 
Manchester, in two successive volumes : (a) St Luke, Evangelist and Historian 
(Sherratt and Hughes 1912) and (b) St Luke, the Man and his Work (Man 
chester Univ. Press, and Longmans 1920), in which he republishes parts of 
the earlier book in a revised form. 

Blass s theory is that the very considerable variations which D, when 
compared with the other chief MSS, introduces into the Lucan writings, are 
to be accounted for by the supposition that the Evangelist himself issued 
two different recensions both of the Gospel and of the Acts. In the case of 
the Gospel, with which we are here primarily concerned, Blass thinks the 
first edition (the Non-Western, represented by Aleph, A, B, &c.) to have 
been written in Palestine as early as St Paul s imprisonment at Caesarea, 2 and 
addressed to Theophilus ; the second (largely represented by D), further 
edited and revised by Luke s own hand, in Rome. 

So sure was Blass of his ground that in 1897 he issued from the Teubner 
Press at Leipzig a text of this latter Gospel secundum formam quae videtur 

The first recension he assigns to about the year A. D. 55 some fifteen 
years before the destruction of Jerusalem (Praef., p. x). And it is in this 
connexion that he adduces, in answer to the argument for a later date than 
A. D. 70 commonly drawn from the language of ch xxi (see notes ad toe.), the 
parallel of Savonarola s detailed prophecy in 1496 of the invasion of Italy 
by Charles VIII in 1527. 

1 s nomenclature, familiar to us from Westcott and Hort in which the 
type of D is distinguished from that of the Syrian and Alexandrir e MSS 


suDainstT , 

ort L> against B. The so-called Western text has ceased to he 

sentative of one particular locality (Turner, foe. cit., p. 595 cf 591) 
tf. p. xxui, note 1, Canon Streeter s latest theory. 


In Blass s edition of the Roman Gospel are given not all the variants which 
appear in D. Some of these (as, e. g., in the Genealogy, iii 35 : Philol. Gosp., 
p. 173) he frankly admits to be corruptions. But a large number of them 
are included, including the incident of the man working on the Sabbath (see 
note on vi 5) which D alone records. He includes also, after xxi 36, in the 
place which it occupies in the so-called Ferrar MSS, 1 the Pericope Adulterae 
(Blass, Praef., pp. 46-50), which modern scholarship, following the best MS 
authority, has rejected from its traditional place in the fourth Gospel (see 
above, II, p. xxv). 

The main variations are referred to in our notes upon the text, with 
references to the English edition of Blass s Philology of the. Gospels (see, e. g., 
notes on ii 4 and 7, iii 36, vi 5, xi 2-4, &c.). It will be sufficient here to note 
in conclusion the remarkable omissions which D exhibits in the narrative of 
the Passion. These include the Words of Institution in the account of the 
Last Supper (xxii 19b, 20) ; the First Word from the Cross (xxiii 34) ; 
St Peter s visit to the Tomb (xxiv 12) ; the Peace be unto you of Easter 
night (xxiv 36) ; the showing of Hands and Side (xxiv 40) ; and the final 
Carrying up into Heaven (xxiv 51). In sharp contrast to these omissions it 
is to be noted that D stands alone with one of the recensions of the Sinaitic 
MS Aleph, in recording the Bloody Sweat (xxii 43, 44). 

If Blass s theory has any truth in it, the omission from the majority of 
MSS of some of the most precious touches of the Passion Story need not 
trouble us ; for the fuller text as well as the shorter will be from St Luke s 
own hand. But even if we reject his theory, and regard these touches as 
primitive additions to St Luke s work, their canonicity will be untouched, and 
they may still be genuine records of a true tradition. 

[There is a useful paragraph on Blass and the Western text in Bebb s 
article Luke, Gospel of, in Hastings D.B. iii, p. 164. 

Cf. also an interesting note in S. C. Carpenter s Christianity according to 
St Luke (S.P.C.K. 1919), p. 229. For a study of the peculiarities and abnor 
malities of D see J. Rendel Harris s Texts and Studies, vol. ii, No. 1, Cam 
bridge Press.] 

VII. St Luke s Outline of the Ministry 

For the earlier part of the Ministry of our Lord, and for the Last Days, 
St Luke on the whole follows the Synoptic scheme the lines laid down in 
St Mark s Gospel. In this scheme the duration of the Ministry is left ex 
tremely vague ; and it is often asserted that it could all be comprised within 
a single year. It is from data derived from the fourth Gospel (the Passovers 
of Jn i 29, ii 15, vi 4, xii 1) that the commonly accepted tradition of a three 
years Ministry is derived. It is, however, possible that the words of the 

1 On the importance of this group cf. C. H. Turner, loc. tit., pp. 585, 588. 


parable (Lk xiii 7), These three years I come seeking fruit, may allude to 
the actual length of the Lord s Ministry. 

Apart from the new matter which he introduces in ch vii and the first three 
verses of ch viii, and from the special touches with which his Passion-Narrative 
abounds (see Prelim. Note on xix 28 xxiii 56, p. 247), there are two main 
points at which the third Evangelist departs from the Marcan outline. These 
are commonly known as the Great Omission and the Great Insertion. The 
former might shorten the Ministry by a few days or weeks ; the latter might 
lengthen it by months. 

(a) The Great Omission. At ix 18 Luke passes on straight from the 
narrative of the Feeding of the Five Thousand (cf. Mk vi 32-44), near Beth- 
saida on the shore of the Lake of Galilee, to the incident of Peter s confession, 
and the first Prediction of the Passion, which Mark locates (viii 27) in the 
neighbourhood of Caesarea Philippi. He thus omits the series of events and 
sayings given in Mk vi 45 viii 26. With the reasons for this omission we 
are not concerned here various conjectures are set forth in the Commentary 
(see Introductory Note on iv 14 ix 50, p. 57). The point that concerns us 
here is the relation of this omission to St Luke s outline of the Ministry. He 
takes up the narrative at ix 18 with the formula And it came to pass, which 
is quite indefinite as to time-sequence (cf. ix 51, xi 1, xiv 1, xviii 35, xx 1) 
except when further defined, as in ix 37. He was probably uncertain of the 
interval between ix 17 and ix 18 (as, e. g., of that between x 42 and xi 1) and 
therefore left it vague. It does not therefore follow that he pictured the 
Confession as following immediately after the Feeding. 

So we may say that practically the Great Omission does not materially 
affect St Luke s conception of the length and course of the Ministry. 

(6) The Great Insertion, ix 51 xix 27 (sometimes regarded as finishing at 
xviii 14, because of the temporary coalescence of St Luke with the main 
Synoptic stream, xviii 18-43). Here St Luke contributes some 350 verses 
of new matter to the Gospel history, and expands to a length probably 
requiring weeks and months what St Matthew compresses into two verses 
(Mat xix 1, 2) and St Mark into a single verse (Mk x 1). He thus gives more 
space to the period of the Ministry which lies between the Transfiguration 
and the Passion. 

The section begins, however (ix 51), with a time-reference of the vaguest 
description. And it came to pass, when the days were being fulfilled that 
he should be received up. . . . And within the section the references are 
equally vague. The recurring antiphon referring to His going up towards 
Jerusalem (ix 51, 67, x 38, xiii 22, xvii 11, xviii 22, xix 28) may or may not be 
intended to mark successive journeys, or successive stages in a single journey. 
The Evangelist s vagueness here is doubtless a measure of his honesty he 
speaks indefinitely because his data are indefinite. But it is interesting and 
significant to note with how little violence the few incidental indications of 
locality can be made to fit into the chronological framework of the fourth 
Gospel (see Introductory Note on ix 51 xix 27, p. 139). 


For the duration of the Ministry we must turn, as has been said, to that 
fourth Gospel. St Luke alone attempts to fix the point in history where our 
Lord s Ministry begins, by means of the elaborate synchronisms of iii 1, 2. 
He enables us to conjecture with tolerable certainty that the Mission of John 
and the Baptism of Christ took place either in A. D. 26 or A. D. 28 (according 
as the fifteenth year of Tiberius is dated from the year in which he was asso 
ciated with Augustus or from that on which he became sole emperor). 

Like all the Synoptists he sees in the Transfiguration a dividing epoch in 
the Ministry. Before it the theme is Jesus is the Christ : after it The 
Christ must suffer. 

But for any date after that we must look to indications outside the third 
Gospel. When he wrote the Gospel, he was not even certain (as he was when he 
wrote the Acts) that forty days intervened between the Resurrection and the 
Ascension. He strove, however (i 3) to marshal his matter in its true sequence, 
and an attempt has been made in the Running Analysis which follows to set 
forth this sequence in intelligible form. 

It is well to keep distinct the question of St Luke s outline of the Ministry, 
as it may have appeared to him, and that of the actual outline which a refer 
ence to facts which he had not before him makes possible to us. His honest 
vagueness gives us room to insert the results of other investigations, such as 
those of C. H. Turner, Chronology in Hastings D.B., and F. R. M. Hitch 
cock, Dates in Hastings D.C.G. 

A. D. 26-27 Preaching of John Baptist (Lk iii 1) 

,, 27 (Passover) Baptism of Jesus 

27 Early Ministry in Galilee 

28 (April) Work in Judaea (Jn iii 22-36, iv 1-4 : hinted at, 

Lk iv 44 R.V. Marg.) 
,, 28 (April) Arrest of Baptist 

,, 28 (April-May) Work in Galilee, with Capernaum as centre 

(Lk iv ix 50) 
Mission of Twelve 
The Transfiguration 
,, 28 (Autumn) Journeyings towards Jersualem 

Mission of Seventy 
,, 28 (Sept.-Oct.) Feast of Tabernacles at Jerusalem (Jn vii 1 

ix 21 : Lk x 38 ?) 
,, 28 (Dec.) Feast of Dedication at Jerusalem (Jn ix 21 

x42: Lkxiii35?) 
28 (Dec.)-29 (Mar.) 3rd and 4th Periods of the Journeyings (Lk xiv 


29 (Mar. 12) Arrival at Bethany (Lk xix 29) 

,, 29 (Mar. 18) Crucifixion Good Friday (Lk xxiii) 

29 (Mar. 20) Easter Day (Lk xxiv 1) 

29 (April 22) Ascension Day (Lk xxiv 51) 


i 1-4. The third Gospel and the Acts alone of New Testa- 

St Lutes ment boots h av e a formal Prologue or Preface, in the 
manner of the writers of classical antiquity. (The 
nearest parallel in Scripture is the Prologue affixed to 
the Apocryphal book Ecclesiasticus, by the grandson of 
its author Jesus son of Sirach.) These prefaces link 
together the two works attributed to St Luke, and 
mark off the Gospel as prior in time to the Acts. The 
two may be regarded as twin volumes of a single work ; 
the Gospel (Ac i 1, 2) describing the beginnings of the 
redemptive work and teaching of the Saviour, wrought 
during His bodily presence on earth, the Acts the 
continuance and development of that work by the 
ascended Lord through His Spirit. 

The formal beginning of St Luke s Gospel is at the 
opening of ch iii, with its elaborate synchronisms. 
This corresponds to the commencement of the second 
Gospel, and to the demands of apostolic witness as 
stated in Ac i 21 : beginning from the baptism of 
John . . . It is possible that the narrative originally 
began at iii 1, and that the author subsequently pre 
fixed, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, the 
uniquely precious story of the Saviour s Annunciation, 
Birth, and Infancy. 

/ In P assin g from tne Preface to this story, at i 5 we 
,, and pa88 as has been said from the Greek f Xenophon 
Childhood of to tnat f the Septuagint. This preliminary section 
the Saviour, of the Gospel is, like the first chapters of the Acts, 
sown with Hebraisms and Aramaisms, while the rest 
of the two books is couched in a purer Greek than any 
other of the New Testament documents, with the 
possible exception of the Epistle to the Hebrews. 1 

St Luke was a real artist, who knew how to achieve 
his local colour : but there is also every reason to 
suppose that ch i 5 ii 52 is based on a tradition 
derived from those prominently concerned Elisabeth 
and the Lord s Mother and one which if not actually 
committed to writing (and there is evidence for a 
Hebrew document, see below, p. 6) had assumed a very 
definite oral shape. 
The narrative covers, according to the most probable 

n T\At%? tiC A T ble ^ there is so? 16 Patristic authority for ascribing Hebrews 
to Luke (Clem Alex, and Ongen ap. Euseb. H.E. vi 14. 25). 


chronology, the period between 7-6 B. c. and the Passover 
of A.D. 6 (ii 41). It recounts eight successive events: 
(1) the Promise of the Forerunner, (2) the Annunciation 
of the Saviour s birth, (3) the Visitation, (4) the Birth 
of the Forerunner, (5) the Nativity of the Saviour, 
(6) His Circumcision, (7) the Presentation in the Temple, 
(8) the Saviour s visit to the Temple 12 years after. 

Two things are specially noticeable about this section 
of the Gospel. 

(1) It forms a perfect link between the two Testa 
ments. The mental and psychological atmosphere of 
the story, the outlook of the actors, and the very form 
and shape of the utterances ascribed to them are those 
of the threshold. The writer or editor of the narrative 
has not inserted anywhere anachronistic touches from 
the colouring of the years when he was writing, in the 
second half of the first century. Even the prophetic 
utterances of Zacharias and the Blessed Virgin are 
couched entirely in Old Testament language and idea. 
They are Songs before Sunrise Songs of the Dawn. 

(2) The provenance of a large part of the narrative 
is broadly hinted at more than once by the Evangelist 
(ii 19, 51) Mary kept all these sayings, pondering 
them in her heart. There is much of this record that 
could have emanated from none else, and St Luke tells 
us whence he derived it, directly or indirectly. 

Of the glory and beauty of this Gospel of the Infancy 
the world of Art and Poetry speaks with no uncertain 
voice in the long line of paintings of Madonna and 
Child, and Holy Family, with their immense influence 
on human feeling, and on the Christmas hymns and carols. 
Above all St Luke has won the gratitude of all Christen 
dom by his preservation of the Songs of the Holy 
Nativity : Magnificat (i 46-55), Benedictus (i 68-79), 
Gloria in Excelsis (ii 14), and Nunc Dimittis (ii 29-32), 
continuously used as Christian Canticles throughout 
nineteen centuries. 

With ch iii begins the narrative of the Ministry of iii 1 iv 13. 

John the Baptist (Mat iii, Mk i) immediately preceding Preparation 

that of the Saviour. The narrative, dropped at the Ministr 
Passover of A. D. 6, is resumed at a date probably A. D. 26 
or 27, with elaborate chronological introduction, in 

which mention is made not only of the Emperor s iii i_23. 

regnal year, but of the names of the contemporary local () Mission 

rulers. In this ceremonious way St Luke ushers in / 8t t . he B ^ ap ~ 

the Herald of the King; and forthwith narrates (1) tism" of Jesus. 
with matter in the main identical in all three Synoptists, 



but here and there peculiar to his Gospel, the mission of 
John the Baptist, culminating in his baptism of Jesus. 
(&)Genea- There follows (2) a genealogy of Jesus differing from 
that of St Matthew in detail, and characteristically 
extending back not merely to Abraham, but to the 
first man. Finally (3) the story of the Temptation, 
closely resembling that of the first Gospel but with 
variation in order, brings us to the point where the 
preparation is done, and the actual mission of the 
Saviour commences, at ch iv 14. 

logy of 

(c) Temp 

iv 14 ix 50. 



(a) Sermon 
at Nazareth. 
Ministry at 

(b) The 
Call of first 
disciples by 
the Lake. 

Works and 
words of 

Choosing of 
the Twelve. 

The Ser 
mon on the 
Level Place. 

We are now transported to Galilee, 1 where, according 
to the Synoptic tradition, the scene of our Lord s first 
official words and works was laid, 2 and the next section 
of the Gospel (iv 14 ix 50) deals with this ministry 
in the north. (1) The record of the first sermon at 
Nazareth where he had been brought up is peculiar 
to the third Gospel, and has been attributed to the 
same sources as the narratives of the Infancy. From 
Nazareth He passes to Capernaum and the lake of 
Gennesaret, where we have from St Luke a uniquely 
full account of the call of Peter and Andrew, James 
and John. (2) By the lake-side, after sundry words 
and works of power, which attracted multitudes to 
His feet, and elicited also the first venomous darts of 
hostility from the official leaders of religion, He chose 
His Twelve Apostles, after a whole night of prayer on 
the hill-side. As sequel to the appointment of the 
Twelve St Luke places the great Sermon (vi 20-49), 
of which the bulk of the material, together with other 
like matter, is concentrated by St Matthew in the 
Sermon on the Mount. 

Then follows (3) a further period of activity in and 
around Capernaum, leading up to the Mission of the 
Twelve (chs vii, viii), a section in which St Luke s 
peculiar and characteristic message is summed up in 
the two stories of the Raising of the Widow s Son 
(vii 11-17) and the Pardoning of the Penitent Woman 
(vii 36-50), and in the notice (viii 2, 3) of the large 

1 According to St Matthew (iii 1) the scene of St John s preaching had been 
the wilderness of Judaea ; St Luke, more vaguely (iii 3), all the region round 
about Jordan. 

2 There is a hint in St Matthew (iv 12) of a possible sojourn in Judaea imme 
diately after the Temptation, and the best attested reading in Lk iv 44 would 
imply that the Galilean Ministry was interrupted, shortly after the healing of 
Simon s mother-in-law, by a circuit through the towns and villages of Judaea. 
This would add to the points in which St Luke seems to bridge the gulf between 
the first three Gospels and the fourth. 


group of women of substance who attached themselves 
to the Saviour. 

Finally (4) a fourth sub-section of the narrative 
carries us from the Mission of the Twelve (ix 1-6) to 
the moment when the Lord stedfastly set His face to 
go to Jerusalem. The climax of this period is the 
Feeding of the 5,000, mentioned by all four Evangelists, 
and occurring probably at Passover A. D. 28, and His 
Galilean Ministry proper comes to an end. Here is to 
be noted the unusual phenomenon of an omission by 
St Luke (between ix 17 and 18) of a well- marked section 
of St Mark s narrative (Mk vi 45 viii 26). So far the 
Lucan record of the Ministry has been largely paralleled 
in St Matthew, and has followed in the main, with the 
exception just noted, the outline of St Mark s story. 

With ch ix 51 begins St Luke s new contribution to ix 51 xix 27. 
the Gospel history, a long section (ix 51 xix 27) St Luke s 
which has no parallel in the other Synoptists ; though f^t^onto 
scattered fragments up and down are to be found, ^ e Gospel 
otherwise ordered in the first Gospel, and, in a less Story. 
degree, in the second. 

This central section constitutes one-third of the whole 
Gospel, and is balanced by the Galilean Ministry and 
the Passion before and after, each a little more than 
half its length. Its marks of time and place are few 
and somewhat vague, but there are two points where 
a proximity to Jerusalem is implied before the last 
Passover ; and a comparison with the fourth Gospel 
to which St Luke has more points of affinity than have 
the other Synoptists emboldens us to assume that the 
visit to Bethany (x 38-42) was connected with that 
mentioned by the fourth Evangelist (Jn vii ix) at 
the Feast of Tabernacles (Sept. 23, A. D. 28) ; and the 
mention of danger from Herod, and the pathetic 
reference to Jerusalem (xiii 34) itself implying visits 
to the Holy City not recorded by St Luke would 
synchronize with the visit to the Feast of Dedication 
(Dec. A.D. 28) given by St John (Jn x 22). The great 
section therefore, sometimes called the Travel-Docu 
ment, may be sub-divided on the basis of these Feasts. 

(1) ix 51 x 42, from the conclusion of the Galilean (a) ix 51 x 
Ministry to the Feast of Tabernacles, in which St Luke s 42 
most notable contributions to our knowledge are the Tabernacles 
rejection of our Lord by Samaritan villagers, the Mission [Sept. A. D. 
of the Seventy, the Parable of the Good Samaritan, 28]. 
and the description of the Home at Bethany. 


(6) xi 1 xiii 

to Festival 
of Dedica 
tion [Dec. 
A. D. 28]. 

(c) xiv 1 
xvii 10 

to journey 
up to last 
[Feb. A.D. 

(d) xvii 11 


last Journey 
up to Jeru 
salem [Feb.- 
Mar. A. D. 29], 

xix 28 xxiii 


xix 29 xxi 

(a) Palm 
Sunday to 
the Be 

xxii 1-53. 


(2) xi 1 xiii 35, from Tabernacles to the Dedication 
Feast, in which period come the Parable of the Rich 
Fool, and the lesson of calamities drawn from a recent 
outrage of Pilate, the healing of the infirm woman, and 
the universalist teaching about salvation. 

(3) xiv 1 xvii 10, from the feast of Dedication to 
the Journey up to the Passover of A. D. 29. The whole 
of this section with two exceptions is peculiar to 
St Luke, and it includes such important teaching as is 
embraced in the Parables of the Great Supper, the 
Prodigal Son, the Unjust Steward, and Dives and 

(4) Finally, xvii 11 xix 27, there is the narrative of 
the last Peraean Ministry and the final journey up to the 
Passover of the Passion. This begins as the whole 
great section began (ix 52 x 30) with a Samaritan 
reference, in the story of the Ten Lepers. St Luke s 
special interest in Samaritans reminds us that he is 
also (Ac viii) the chronicler of the later evangelization 
of their city by St Philip, who, later still (Ac xxi 8), 
was his host at Caesarea. We may perhaps see in 
St Philip one of our Evangelist s sources, not only for 
these allusions, but also for some of the touches where 
with he has enriched the Passion narrative that follows. 
Characteristic of the third Gospel is its emphasis on 
the teaching about Prayer ; and in this section (of. 
xi 1-13) we have the Parable of the Importunate Widow 
directed to this end. Then, after four narratives common 
to other Synoptists, the section closes with two items 
peculiar to St Luke : the incident of Zacchaeus and 
the Parable of the Pounds (xix 1-27). 

In the story of the Passion all three Synoptists come 
together again and are closely parallel throughout ; 
while, with certain notable exceptions, the fourth 
Gospel approximates to them beyond its wont. 

(1) In the first section of this story (xix 29 xxi 38), 
which carries us from Palm Sunday up to the day of 
the Betrayal (Wednesday ?), there is little peculiar to 
St Luke, though he diverges rather strikingly from the 
other two in certain phrases of our Lord s great prophecy 
of the end ; and his substitution (xxi 20) of Jerusalem 
compassed with armies, for the more enigmatic abomi 
nation of desolation (Mk xiii 14, Mat xxiv 15) has 
been accorded, perhaps, an exaggerated significance by 
critics. 1 

(2) The second section (xxii 1-53), which carries us 

1 See Introd, p. xix, and notes ad he. 



from the Betrayal and the preparation for the Passover 
to the arrest in the Garden of Gethsemane, is peculiarly 
rich in Lucan touches. The account of the Last Supper 
is closest of all to the Pauline account in 1 Cor xi 23-25, 
and the third Gospel has a unique record of the Lord s 
discourses thereafter, which at one point (xxii 27) 
dovetails remarkably into St John s narrative of the 
Feet-washing; and, in the story of the Agony, Luke 
alone records (if the text is to be retained) 1 the 
strengthening Angel s appearance and the Bloody 
Sweat (xxii 43). 

(3) The account which follows, of the Trials and of 
the Via dolorosa (xxii 59 xxiii 32), has two features 
peculiar to our Gospel. In common with the other 
Synoptists St Luke records the arraignments before the 
Jewish leaders, with St Peter s denials as background, 
and the trial before the Roman Governor ; but into 
the account of Pilate s trial he inserts a remitting of 
the Prisoner to Herod Antipas which falls into line 
with the other signs he displays in the Gospel and the 
Acts, of a special knowledge of the Herodian Court 
(cf. viii 3, ix 7 sqq., xiii 31, 32 ; Ac xii 1 sqq., 19-23, 
xiii 1), and almost drives us to the conjecture that 
Chuza s wife (viii 3) may have provided a special 
source of information. In describing the Way of the 
Cross, this Woman s Evangelist (cf. i, ii, vii 11 sqq., 
37 sqq., viii 1-3, x 38 sq., xiii 10 sqq., &c.) characteristi 
cally contributes the tender episode of the Daughters 
of Jerusalem (xxiii 27-31). 

(4) The last Episode in the Passion is the Crucifixion 
itself, with its sequel, the Entombment (xxiii 33-56), 
and here again St Luke has enriched our knowledge of 
the Gospel story. He alone records the first 2 and last 
Words from the Cross, the words which find an echo 
in the martyr-cries of St Stephen (Ac vii 59, 60) and 
reverberate afterwards in the heart of St Paul. And 
of a piece with these, and with the mind of St Paul, 
and with the Lucan parable of the Prodigal Son and 
narrative of the Forgiven Harlot, is his record of the 
Saviour s reception of the Penitent Robber, and of the 
gracious Second Word from the Cross. 

With the last chapter conies the final motif of the 
Gospel story the narrative of the Saviour s Triumph : 
the glad surprise of Easter Day ; the Resurrection 

(b) Be- 
trayal to 

(c) xxii 54 
xxiii 32. 

The trials : 
the Way to 
the Cross. 

(d) xxii 33- 

The Cruci 
fixion and 

xxiv 1-53. 


1 Omitted by N A, B, al, retained by D (except the words from heaven ). 
See notes ad loc. 

2 xxiii 34, like the Bloody Sweat (xxii 43), is omitted by most of our best 
MS authorities (N, B, D a , b, d, &c). See notes ad loc. 



xxiv 1-12. 

(a) Resur 
rection and 
first Ap 

xxiv 13-^3. 

(6) The Walk 
to Emmaus 
and Appear 
ance in 
Upper Room. 

xxiv 44-51. 
to the As 

attested by angels and by the holy Women, and by 
the Eleven ; the final injunction to the disciples, and 
the ascension from the Mount of Olives. 

The opening scenes the angels, the women, the 
empty tomb are largely parallel to those described 
by the other Synoptists, though not without special 
features, and the third Gospel approaches the fourth 
in its mention of a visit of St Peter to the sepulchre, 
as it does later on in the record of an appearance on 
Easter evening to the Eleven. But between these 
two incidents St Luke inserts (xxiv 13-35) a narrative 
of peculiar beauty and interest, perhaps summarized in 
the last twelve verses of St Mark : the story of the 
appearance to Cleopas and his friend on their walk. 
Who was the unnamed friend ? Was it Philip the 
Evangelist ? Or could it have been St Luke himself ? 
The last nine verses of the Gospel give a cursory and 
syncopated account of what is described more fully in 
Ac i 1-11, and the Gospel ends as it began, on the 
characteristic note of joy (cf. i 14, 44, 47 ; ii 10, &c.). 




This simple preamble, which has a parallel in Ac i 1, 2, but 
nowhere else in the New Testament, is important in several ways. 

(a) It shows that St Luke, the only Gentile contributor to the 
Bible, was a master of the literary Greek of his day, and conversant 
with literary conventions. The style and language of these few 
verses are comparable to those of Xenophon. For the dedication 
to an individual, Blass (Philol. Gosp., p. 2) adduces several parallels 
among Greek writers, notably that to Sossius Senecio, prefixed by 
Plutarch to his Biography of Theseus and Romulus. There and in 
other instances the name comes immediately after the opening 

(b) Taken together with the preface to the Acts, it claims that 
the third Gospel and the Acts are by the same author, addressed to the 
same person, and, in fact, a first and second volume of the same 
work. Incidentally it bears on the date of the Gospel : whatever date 
is assigned for the completion of the Acts, the third Gospel must be 

(c) It throws light on the author s purpose and method. His 
design is to present an accurate and systematically ordered account of 
the Gospel story, the subject of oral instruction to catechumens, 
and in so doing to supersede a number of less satisfactory narratives 
already in circulation. His method is scientific research the 
accurate tracing out of the course of things from the first with 
the use of such material documentary (imperfect Gospels) and oral 
(eyewitnesses) as was available. 

(d) In so doing, it also throws light on the problem of Inspiration. 
St Luke s aim was to be a conscientious historian ; the Church has 
sealed his two books as inspired writings, including them in her 
Canon of Holy Scripture. To many devout minds the third Gospel 
is the most precious and most obviously inspired of all the Books in 
the Bible. Its Gospel of the Infancy, its tenderness and high 
recognition of womanhood, its emphasis on joy, on penitence, on 
the wide embrace of redeeming Love, its parables of the Prodigal 
Son and the Good Samaritan, its special version of the Message 
from the Cross, all mark it out as unique, and give it a unique 
appeal. Yet it is the result not of an overpowering afflatus by which 
the author would be rendered a merely passive instrument, but of 
careful and painful research, artistic selection of material, diligent 
and masterly compilation. 

2 ST LUKE [i i 

If this be so we need not shrink from the conclusion of modern 
scholarship, that compilation and redaction played a very large part 
in the development of the books of the Old Testament. Inspiration 
quickens the natural gifts, and illumines and steadies the judgement 
of the inspired writer. The author of the third Gospel is a notable 
example of this. 

I FORASMUCH as many have taken in hand to draw up a 
narrative concerning those matters which have been fulfilled 
among us, 2 even as they delivered them unto us, which 
from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the 
word, 3 it seemed good to me also, having traced the course 
of all things accurately from the first, to write unto thee in 
order, most excellent Theophilus ; 4 that thou mightest know 
the certainty concerning the 2 things 3 wherein thou wast 

1 Or, fully established 2 Gr. words. 

3 Or, which thou wast taught by word of mouth 

1. Forasmuch as many. . . . When St Luke wrote these words 
we cannot be certain. The latest probable date is about A. D. 80 
and the earliest about 60 (see Introd., p. xx). It would seem 
probable that many fragmentary and imperfect narratives must 
have seen the light during the first half of the first century : i. e. 
within some twenty years of the Crucifixion. That these were, all 
or any of them, gravely incorrect, St Luke s words do not necessarily 
imply. Among these might well be (a) a MS. of the Logia or 
Sayings of the Lord (see Introd., p. xxii) emanating from the Apostle 
St Matthew, or a similar document in narrative framework such as 
is known as Q, and an earlier edition of the narrative of the Lord s 
doings and sufferings, the substance of St Peter s preaching, put 
together by St Mark (see Introd., ibid.). We need not necessarily 
endorse the suggestion (McLachlan, St Luke, Evangelist, &c., p. 9) 
that the third Evangelist virtually condemned the second as 
" wrong in its order of events, unspiritual, imperfect, and in 
correct ". 

have taken in hand. Here begins the medical language of 
St Luke : eVtxeipeiv is a common medical word, and is, as a matter 
of fact, used similarly in their Introductions by both Hippocrates 
and Galen (Hobart, M ed. Lang., p. xxxii). See further, Introd. p. xxx. 

fulfilled. If this rendering be preferred to fully established 
(R.V. marg.) or surely believed (A.V.), its implication will be : 
The facts on which our belief are grounded are quite certain ; 
it remains to present them in the most complete and scientific way. 
The word (TreTrXr/po^op^/Aevwv) is really a metaphor from natural 
growth, have reached full and ripe development, and is thus 

1 1- 3 ] ST LUKE 3 

applied by Poly bins in his preface (c. 200 B. c.) to the consummation 
of the Roman Empire (Expositor, Oct. 1910). St Luke s excuse for 
adding to the number of narratives is his access to the information 
of eyewitnesses. 

2. Even as they . . . word. On the other hand, the words imply 
that St Luke s information was, in the main, second-hand, and, 
taken with to me also (v. 3), is usually regarded as implying 
a denial that he was in any sense an eyewitness. He was, how 
ever (see Introd.,pp. xv, xxvii), almost certainly a minister of the 
word, a teacher and perhaps Catechist (which may be the meaning 
of minister here) both at Philippi and elsewhere. It may be 
questioned whether this verse absolutely rules out the guess that 
he may have been Cleopas s friend (xxiv 13 sqq.), though he can 
hardly have been one of the Seventy (x 1 sqq.). 

3. having traced the course (TraprjKoXovOrjKort). Hobart (op. cit., 
p. xxxiii) points out that Galen the Physician often uses this word 
technically applied to the investigation of symptoms, in the same 
sense in which St Luke employs it here. 

from the first. This probably alludes to the substance of chs i ii. 
No Gospel hitherto had gone beyond the scope of witness suggested 
by St Peter before the election of St Matthias (Ac i 22) : beginning 
from the baptism of John, unto the day that he was received up 
from us. St Peter s own Gospel (as presented to us by St Mark) 
is set within these bounds exactly ; and St Luke may have seen it 
in a still earlier shape. If our present first Gospel was already in 
circulation, surely St Luke had not seen it. In spite of what 
Sir W. M. Ramsay says (Recent Research, p. 303), it seems difficult 
to conceive him deliberately rejecting the Story of the Magi from 
his material (see Introd., p. xxviii). St Luke s own Gospel may have 
been originally planned to begin at ch iii 1 ; but fuller research 
and contact with Palestine opened to him the treasure-house of the 
Gospel of the Infancy. If he had had nothing else to add, it would 
have justified his decision to write. 

in order. He attempts to arrange his matter as far as possible 
chronologically, and to associate the Lord s sayings with the 
occasions on which they were uttered. This was not always prac 
ticable ; hence the chronological and topographical vagueness of 
much of the great section ix 51 xviii 10. The first Gospel seems 
to group sayings together by subject as, e.g., the Sermon on the 
Mount (Mat v vii), of which elements are scattered up and down 
the third Gospel. The original Logia of St Matthew had probably 
little or no trace of chronological arrangement like the recently 
discovered Oxyrhynchus papyri, Sayings of Jesus. There is a very 
good vindication of St Luke s method of research in pp. 42-60 of 
A. T. Robertson s Luke the Historian in the Light of Research, T. and 
T. Clark 1920. 

most excellent Theophilus. Some have thought that the name 
Theophilus ( = God-lover or God-beloved) is merely a symbol for the 


4 ST LUKE [1 3, 4 

typical believer. This was Origen s view, and was favoured by 
Bishop Lightfoot. But the name was not uncommon, and St Luke 
is most likely addressing an actual Gentile convert to Christianity, 
a friend or patron of his. This is rendered the more probable by 
the epithet (^pcmo-ros) which is one like Your excellency, applied 
to persons of rank or high office such as Felix (Ac xxiii 26, xxiv 3) 
and Festus (ib. xxvi 25). Ramsay (Recent Research, p. 303) thinks 
the title proves that Theophilus was a definite Roman Official. 

4. instructed : literally catechised. If we may take this verb 
in its technical sense, it will follow that this Gospel, like the rest of 
the New Testament, was written not to convert the heathen, but to 
build up and render more intelligent the faith and practice of 
believers. 1 The early catechism was oral, and the Apostles Creed 
as we know it first appears for certain at Rome in the fourth century : 
but doubtless some such outline of the faith as forms the framework 
of St Mark s Gospel had already been mastered by Theophilus. 
Dr A. Plummer points out (Preface to 1st Ed., p. v) that the Old 
Roman Creed is all of it to be found in St Luke s exposition of the 
certainty of the things wherein Theophilus was instructed. 2 
The word instructed, KCIT^X^^S = catechised, if used in what 
very early became its technical sense, seems to imply that Theophilus 
was at least a catechumen under instruction for baptism. He may 
or may not, as yet, have been baptized. Zahn thinks that if already 
one of the Brethren he would not have been accorded the formal 
title excellency ; and the fact that the title is dropped in Acts 
might suggest that Theophilus had been baptized in the interval. 

An old tradition (Clementine Recognitions) makes Theophilus 
a rich and influential compatriot of St Luke, a native of Antioch : 
later traditions make him, further, Bishop of Antioch or of Caesarea. 
(There is an interesting note on Theophilus in McLachlan s St Luke, 
the Man and his Work (1920), pp. 218-220.) 

1 Prof. Cadbury (Expositor, June 1921, pp. 431 sqq.), comparing the phraseology 
of the Preface with St Luke s use of the same words in Acts, concludes for an un- 


technical use of Karrjx-nffrjs ; thinks that Theophilus was a well-disposed heathen 
official, and St Luke s Gospel is the first of Christian Apologies. 

2 Dr Plummer sets it out as follows : 

I believe in God the Father Almighty : i 37, iii 8, xi 2-4, xii 32, &c. 

And in Christ Jesus His only-begotten Son : i 31, ii 21, 49, ix 35, x 21, 22, 
xxii 29, 70, xxiii 33, 46 : cf. iv 41, viii 28. 

Our Lord : i 43, ii 11, vii 13, x 1, xi 39, xii 42, xvii 5, 6, xix 8, 31, xxii 61, 
xxiv 3, 34. 

Who was born of the Holy Ghost and Mary the Virgin : i 31-35, 43, ii 6, 7. 

Who under Pontius Pilate was crucified and buried : xxii, xxiii. 

The third day rose from the dead : xxiv 1-49, 

Ascended into the heavens : xxiv 50-53. 

, , , , , , , 

The Holy Church : cf. i 74, 75, ix 1-6, x 1-16, xxiv 49. 
The remission of sins : i 77, iii 3, xxiv 47. 
The resurrection of the flesh : xiv 14, xx 27-40. 



(a) The Promise of the Forerunner, i 5-25. 

(6) The Annunciation of the Saviour s Birth, i 26-38. 

(c) The Visitation, and Magnificat, i 39-56. 

(d) The Birth of the Forerunner and JBenedictus, i 57-80. 

(e) The Nativity of the Saviour and Gloria in^Excelsis : the 
worship of the Shepherds, ii 1-20. 

(/) The Circumcision of the Saviour, ii 21. 

(g) The Presentation, and Nunc Dimittis : Prophecies of Simeon 

and Anna, ii 22-39. 
(h) The Saviour s Childhood and First Passover, ii 40-52. 

If St Luke had written nothing but these two chapters, he would 
have earned the undying gratitude of posterity. He has recorded 
for us the things that Mary kept and pondered in her heart 
(ii 19, 51), and in so doing has given us the only possible contem 
porary and first-hand evidence for the phrase of the Creed, conceived 
by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary. 1 He has furnished us, 
alike in the atmosphere which pervades these chapters and in the 
Canticles embedded in them, with a perfect link between the Old 
Testament and the New. The Songs of the Holy Nativity have 
each its own individuality. Mary s Hymn teems with personal 
feeling, Zacharias with national aspirations, Symeon s with cos 
mopolitan hope. 2 Yet all alike seem to grow naturally out of 
Old Testament Psalmody and Prophecy, in the phrases of which 
they abound, and all alike circle round a single central event. Their 
liturgical use in the Church has lasted nearly nineteen centuries, and 
they are never out of date. 

They belong, says Canon Bernard, 3 to individual persons, to 
one moment, to one event ; but the persons are chosen of God, the 
moment is the commencement of the Gospel, the event is the Birth 
of Christ ; and therefore the words spoken are words for ever. 
The thought of God is in them, exalting the thought of man. They 
mean what Mary, what Zacharias, what Simeon meant from their 
own standpoint, but they mean also what we understand as involved 
in the event which they celebrated and as implied in the words that 
they used. So these Canticles become the voice, not only of those 
holy persons, but of the holy Church, and have their place in its 
devotions as a leading note for the perpetual choir. Thus, in using 
them as we do in our services, we have the double advantage of 
hearing the voices of the first evangelical singers and of joining our 
own with them. There is distinction and there is harmony ; 

1 Dr Chase (Creed and N.T., Macmillan 1920, p. 31), remarking that Ultimately 
the story if true must have rested on the word of the Lord s Mother, ad s that 
the evidence for the Virgin Birth is slight, but in a case of this kind it could not 
be otherwise than slight. 

2 A. Wright, St Luke, Macmillan 1900 (p. 9). 

3 Songs of the Holy Nativity, by T. D. Bernard, Macmillan 1895, p. 43. 

6 ST LUKE [I 5-10 

distinction because they, speaking at the dawn of knowledge, had 
a cast of thought different from ours ; harmony because the Spirit 
who spake in them is the same who speaks in the Church in the 
fulness of the Gospel day. l 

A strong plea has recently been urged 2 that there are really 
ten Songs of the Nativity ; for besides the recognized Canticles, 
there are six other passages which, when translated, fall naturally 
into the Hebrew Poetry with the characteristics of the later Psalms. 
These are : (a) i 13-17 Angel s Message to Zacharias, (6) i 30-33 
Gabriel s first address to Mary, (c) i 35-37 Gabriel s second address, 
(d) i 42-45 Elisabeth s welcome, (e) ii 10-12 the Angel s address to 
Shepherds, (/) ii 34-36 Simeon s address to Mary. It is claimed, 
in fact, that practically everything spoken in these two chapters 
has a Hebrew metrical original. But some of these utterances are 
so clearly part and parcel of the narrative that, if this be so, the 
evidence is very strong that St Luke s Gospel of the Infancy is 
based on a Hebrew (not Aramaic) document. 

(a) I 5-25 The Promise of the Forerunner 

Zacharias, a childless priest, in the reign of Herod the Great, is 
divinely promised a son in his old age. The revelation comes to him 
at the moment of offering incense. This son is to be the new 
Elijah foretold by Malachi as ushering in the Messianic kingdom. 
Zacharias, doubting, asks for a sign, and the sign given is his 
own dumbness. He returns home, and shortly afterwards his wife 
Elisabeth conceives. 

5 There was in the days of Herod, king of Judaea, a certain 
priest named Zacharias, of the course of Abijah : and he had 
a wife of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elisabeth. 

6 And they were both righteous before God, walking in all 
the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless. 

7 And they had no child, because that Elisabeth was barren, 
and they both were now 1 well stricken in years. 

8 Now it came to pass, while he executed the priest s 
office before God in the order of his course, 9 according to 
the custom of the priest s office, his lot was to enter into the 
2 temple of the Lord and burn incense. 10 And the whole 
multitude of the people were praying without at the hour of 

1 Gr. advanced in their days. 2 Or, sanctuary 

1 Cf. Nairne, Epistle oj Priesthood, pp. 82, 91. 

2 Aytoun, The Ten Lucan Hymns of the Nativity in their original language 
Journal of Theol. Studies (1917), vol. xviii, pp. 274-288. Cf. also Q. H Box The 
Virgin Birth of Jesus, Isaac Pitman 1916, pp. 112, 113. 

I 11-24] ST LUKE 7 

incense. 11 And there appeared unto him an angel of the 
Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense. 12 And 
Zacharias was troubled when he saw him, and fear fell upon 
him. 13 But the angel said unto him, Fear not, Zacharias : 
because thy supplication is heard, and thy wife Elisabeth shall 
bear thee a son, and thou shalt call his name John. 

14 And thou shalt have joy and gladness ; 
And many shall rejoice at his birth. 

15 For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, 
And he shall drink no wine nor 1 strong drink ; 
And he shall be filled with the 2 Holy Ghost, 

Even from his mother s womb. 

16 And many of the children of Israel 
Shall he turn unto the Lord their God. 

17 And he shall 3 go before his face 
In the spirit and power of Elijah, 

To turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, 
And the disobedient to walk in the wisdom of the just ; 
To make ready for the Lord a people prepared for 


18 And Zacharias said unto the angel, Whereby shall I know 
this ? for I am an old man, and my wife 4 well stricken in 
years. 19 And the angel answering said unto him, I am 
Gabriel, that stand in the presence of God ; and I was sent to 
speak unto thee, and to bring thee these good tidings. 20 And 
behold, thou shalt be silent and not able to speak, until the 
day that these things shall come to pass, because thou 
belie vedst not my words, which shall be fulfilled in their 
season. 21 And the people were waiting for Zacharias, and 
they marvelled Vhile he tarried in the temple. 22 And 
when he came out, he could not speak unto them : and they 
perceived that he had seen a vision in the ^temple : and he 
continued making signs unto them, and remained dumb. 
23 And it came to pass, when the days of his ministration 
were fulfilled, he departed unto his house. 

24 And after these days Elisabeth his wife conceived ; and 

1 Gr. sikera. 2 Or, Holy Spirit : and so throughout this book. 

3 Some ancient authorities read come nigh before his face. 

4 Gr. advanced in her days. 5 Or, at his tarrying 6 Or, sanctuary 

8 ST LUKE [1 5, 6 

she hid herself five months, saying, 25 Thus hath the Lord 
done unto me in the days wherein he looked upon me, to take 
away my reproach among men. 

5. Herod, king of Judcea, reigned over the whole of Palestine 
from 37 B. c., when he took Jerusalem by storm, till 4 B. c. He is 
known as Herod the Great. An Idumaean, second son of Anti- 
pater, who after being right-hand man to the Hasmonean Hyrcanus 
from the time of Pompey s invasion of Palestine in 63 B. c., had 
steadily attached himself to successive Romans of distinction. He 
saved Caesar s life after the battle of Pharsalia, and was given by 
him the Roman Citizenship, and afterwards the title of Procurator. 
When Antipater was assassinated in 43, Herod was already Governor 
of Galilee. With his father s address he ingratiated himself with 
Antony, and he and his brother were made tetrarchs. In 40, in 
peril of his life from Antigonus, last of the Hasmoneans, he fled to 
Rome, and obtained from the Senate the title of King of the Jews, 
and three years later entered his kingdom by force of Roman arms. 
Though friendly on the whole to his subjects, he developed gradually 
into the bloodiest of tyrants. The massacre of the Innocents 
recorded by St Matthew would be an act typical of the last years of 
his reign. The Herod mentioned later in the Gospel is his son 
Antipas, who inherited the Galilean portion of his father s do 
minions on the death of the latter. (On the Herod family, see 
Hastings, D.B. s.v.) 

Zacharias, of the course of Abijah. Zacharias, Greek form of the 
familiar Old Testament Zechariah ( = the LORD remembereth ). 
In 1 Chron xxiv 10 this course of Abijah is detailed as the eighth 
of the twenty-four courses into which the priests were subdivided. 
Each course served in the Temple for a week in turn, and the 
numerous members of the course drew lots (v. 8) as to who should 
officiate. This arrangement probably dates back to Ezra s time. 
It has been calculated that the course of Abijah was on duty in 
6 B. c. from April 18 to 24 and from Oct. 3 to 9 ; the latter date 
would fit in with the traditional times for Christmas and Lady Day 
(see Hastings, D.C.G. i 410). 

of the daughters of Aaron. The priests might intermarry with 
other tribes, and it must have been some such intermarriage that 
made Elisabeth and Mary (of the tribe of Judah) cousins (v. 36). 

Elisabeth: Elisheba (= God is my oath, i.e. the absolutely 
faithful ) was the name of Aaron s wife, Ex vi 23. 

6. righteous before God . . . blameless : cf . ii 25 of Simeon. The 
Gospel of the Infancy introduces us into a circle of simple, gracious, 
and saintly characters all too rare in the Judaea of that epoch. 
Zacharias and Elisabeth, the Blessed Virgin, Simeon and Anna, 
represent the noblest product of Old Testament education, and as 
such are privileged to see with clear eyes the dawn of the New 
Testament revelation. 

1 9-i 4 ] ST LUKE 9 

9. to enter into the temple . . . incense. This coveted office of 
burning incense on the golden altar at the morning or evening 
sacrifice could only fall to an individual priest once. It was the 
great moment of Zacharias s life, and his heart was no doubt alert for 
the supernatural. The altar was in the Sanctuary or Holy Place : 
a chamber 60 feet long, which had the table of Shewbread on the 
left, the altar of incense in the centre, and the seven-branched 
candlestick on the right. The altar is described Ex xxx 1-10 : 
the place of the table and candlestick Ex xxvi 35. They are men 
tioned again in 1 Mace iv 49-51 in the account of Judas Maccabaeus s 
dedication of the restored Temple in 165 B. c. 

10. at the hour of incense, i. e. of the Morning Sacrifice (about 
9 a.m.) or of the Evening Sacrifice (about 3 p.m.). 

11. an angel. The word means messenger, and is used also for 
human messengers, as in vii 24. In the Old Testament some have 
thought that the angel who waked the weary Elijah (1 Kgs xix 
5 sqq.) and fed him with bread freshly made was a friendly Bedawen 
a veritable messenger of God to him in his desolation. So too 
Sir W. M. Ramsay thinks that the angel who unlocked Peter s 
fetters and the doors of his prison was some friendly member of 
Herod s household. 

Angels in the New Testament are mostly described in the form 
of men, e. g. the angels of the Resurrection (xxiv 4) and of the 
Ascension (Ac i 10). Granted the existence of angels, which is 
implied not only in the Old and New Testaments, but specifically 
in our Lord s own teaching (e. g. ix 26, xii 9, xv 10, xvi 22) ; and 
that God has ordained and constituted the services of Angels and 
men in a wonderful order, it is quite natural that his human servants, 
when doing angels work, may sometimes be mistaken for their 
superhuman fellow servants. But there is no question of a human 
agent here, nor, probably, in the other cases in this Gospel. 

Angelic appearances are frequent in this Gospel of the Infancy, 
where the actors are of such a temperament as to be helped by such 
visions ; they occur again in the momentous days of the Passion 
(xxii 43, cf. Mat xxvi 53) and the Resurrection (xxiv 4) and 

Later Judaism became puerile in its elaborate angelology, and 
in St Paul s time the worship of angels was a danger at Colossae 
(Col ii 18) ; but abusus non tollit usum. 

12. Zacharias was troubled. Fear is a natural outcome of contact 
with the supernatural : cf . the very detailed description of an angelic 
vision in Dan x. As there, so here to Zacharias, and later to the 
shepherds, the angel s first word is one of reassurance, Fear not. 

13. thy supplication is heard : evidently Zacharias and his wife 
had, like Hannah the mother of Samuel, been hoping against hope, 
and praying for a son. 

John = Johannan, the LORD is gracious. 

14-17. The angel s proclamation takes, when turned into 

10 ST LUKE [1 14-17 

Hebrew, a metrical form : see also i 30-33, i 35-37, i 42-45, ii 10-12, 

11 34-36. 

14. joy and gladness. He would bring joy not only to his 
parents in their lonely old age, but to a large circle, because of his 
function in the scheme of Redemption, to usher in the Kingdom 
of the Messiah. 

Joy is a characteristic note of this Gospel, struck here for the 
first time. So the angel of the Nativity brings a message of great 
joy to the shepherds and all mankind ii 10 ; the Evangelist records 
the joy of the Seventy as they return from their mission x 17, and 
the responsive joy of their Master x 21, the joy of the people at the 
glorious works of Jesus xiii 17, and the Lord s assertion of the joy 
of angels over the repentant sinner xv 7, 10 ; the joy of Zacchaeus 
that he should be permitted to entertain Jesus xix 6, and that of 
the disciples when their Risen Lord came to them xxiv 41 (cf . xxiv 
32) ; and the Gospel ends as it began on the note of gladness 
xxiv 52 a gladness that suffuses the life also of the early Church 
as depicted by St Luke (Ac viii 8, xiii 52, xv 3, &c.). 

St Luke has caught the spirit of his illustrious friend and 
travelling companion St Paul (Eph v 19, 20), who could sing and 
make melody in his heart unto the Lord when imprisoned at Rome 
as earlier at Philippi (Ac xvi 25). 

15. no wine nor strong drink : cf . the thrice-repeated injunction 
to Manoah s wife (Judg xiii 4, 7, 14) at the annunciation of the 
proximate birth of Samson. The mother is there exhorted during 
the period of conception and gestation to conform to the ascetic 
rule of her future Nazarite son (cf. Numb vi 3). We are not told 
that St John Baptist was actually a Nazarite (as an ancient tradition 
asserts St James the Lord s Brother to have been) : but he was 
marked off from the first for an ascetic life. This is hinted at by 
St Luke of his childhood and youth ( in the deserts, 3 i 80, cf. 
vii 24 sq.), and asserted of his official life by the other evangelists, 
Mat iii 4, Mk i 6, and by our Lord himself in St Luke s record, 
vii 33 John the Baptist is come eating no bread nor drinking 
wine. . . . 

16-17. The special mission of John will be to convert members 
of the Jewish Church to their God, and to propagate the spirit of 
dulif ulness in preparation for the Day of the LORD, even as 
Malachi had prophesied of Elijah, Mai iv 5, 6. He will bring the 
present rebellious generation into religious harmony with the 
righteous of olden time. It is noticeable that the angel s message, 
while it definitely recalls the passage of Malachi, robs that passage 
of its threatening sternness, even as the Saviour, in his reading of 
Isaiah at Nazareth, stops short of the words, the day of vengeance 
of our God (see iv 19, 20). The identification of the Baptist with 
the Elijah predicted by Malachi is made clear in Mat xi 14. The 
picture here presented represents one side of Messianic tradition 
the Coming of Jehovah : that given in the Annunciation to Mary, 

1 1 7-2 5 ] ST LUKE 11 

the other side the Davidic King (v. 32). In Benedictus the two 
are blended (vv. 67 sqq.). 

19. / am Gabriel : the angel of the Annunciation also (v. 26). 
Gabriel ( = Man of God) and Michael ( = who is like God ?) are both 
mentioned in Daniel Gabriel viii 16, ix 21, Michael x 13, 21, 
xii 1 and these two are the only angels named in the New Testa 
ment Gabriel in this chapter, and Michael in Rev xii 7 as a warrior- 
angel, and in Jude v. 9 as archangel. The allusion in Jude was 
thought by Origen to have been drawn from an apocryphal As 
sumption of Moses, and it is certain that the Jewish angelology, 
stimulated probably by Persian influence, was developed and 
elaborated in the centuries preceding our era. An archangel 
figures in 2 Esdras, named Jeremiel (iv 36), and an angel Uriel 
(iv 1, v 20, x 28) ; in Tobit the angel Raphael figures largely 
(iii 17, &c.), and opposes the evil spirit Asmodeus (iii 17, cf. iii 8). 
Gabriel is the angel of revelation, and Mohammed claimed to have 
received from him revelations which appear in the Koran. 

20. because thou believedst not. Zaeharias gets the desired sign 
(v, 18), but receives it in the form of a chastisement. Superficially 
his question resembles Mary s in v. 34 ; but the context makes it 
clear that his perplexity was not, like hers, blameless. 

21. they marvelled while he tarried. According to Pharisaic 
practice the incense was prepared outside the Temple, and then 
brought in ; so that the presence of the censing priest in the sanctuary 
was normally of short duration, and that is why the people were 
surprised. P. L. 

23. when the days . . . were fulfilled, i.e. when his week on duty 
was over. (See on v. 5.) 

unto his house : in a city in the uplands of Judah, as we see from 
v. 39. 

24. hid herself : not from shame, as the next verse makes clear, 
but to avoid foolish gossip and to meditate and pray. 

25. to take away my reproach. Childlessness was esteemed 
a reproach among the Hebrews, partly, no doubt on account of the 
intense natural desire for motherhood, and on the father s part 
for the continuance of the family : but this longing was doubtless 
heightened in the devout because any child might prove to be the 
promised Messiah. So Sarah, bearing a son in her old age, says 
God hath made me to laugh (Gen xxi 6), and Rachel, before the 
birth of Joseph, God hath taken away my reproach (Gen xxx 23). 
Perhaps a closer parallel still is Hannah, whose bitter longing, and 
persevering prayer and triumph are recorded in 1 Sam i, ii. Her 
Song at the birth of Samuel (1 Sam ii 1-10) formed, in some sense, 
a model for the Magnificat (see on vv. 46 sqq.). 

(b) 26-38 The Annunciation 

The angel Gabriel is sent to Nazareth to announce to Mary, 
virgin betrothed to Joseph of the house of David, that, by the 

12 ST LUKE [126-34 

power of the Holy Spirit, she shall conceive and bear a Son, to be 
called JESUS, who shall be called Son of the Most High, and shall 
rule for ever as Davidic King over God s People. Mary s alarm is 
quieted by a reference to God s dealings with her cousin Elisabeth, 
and she submits herself in faith to the Will of God. 

The Annunciation is amongst the most favourite subjects of 
Christian Art, and the National Gallery contains a wealth of typical 
examples from Duccio di Buoninsegna (No. 1139) in the thirteenth 
century to D. G. Rossetti (No. 1210) in the nineteenth. Notable are 
those of Era Filippo Lippi (No. 666), Crivelli (No. 739), and Gau- 
denzio Ferrari (No. 3068). The Medici Society in P. L. Warner s 
Book of the Childhood of Christ (cited hereafter as P. L. W., Childhood) , 
see Introd., p. xxxii, has a reproduction of Fra Angelico in which he 
has caught the genuine Giottesque spirit of reverent serenity, as 
contrasted with the reckless impetuosity of the Angel and the 
panic fear of the Blessed Virgin as limned by later Artists. See 
Ruskin, Giotto and his Works in Padua, G. Allen 1905, p. 94. On 
Gabriel in the Annunciation see Mrs Jameson, Sacred and Legendary 
Art, Pt I, ii (The Archangels). 

26 Now in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent 
from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, 27 to a 
virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the 
house of David ; and the virgin s name was Mary. 28 And 
he came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly 
favoured, the Lord is with thee. 2 29 But she was greatly 
troubled at the saying, and cast in her mind what manner of 
salutation this might be. 30 And the angel said unto her, 
Fear not Mary : for thou hast found 
3 favour with God. 

31 And behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring 

forth a son, 

and shalt call his name JESUS. 

32 He shall be great, 

and shall be called the Son of the Most High : 
And the Lord God shall give unto him 
the throne of his father David : 

33 And he shall reign over the house of Jacob 4 for ever ; 

and of his kingdom there shall be no end. 
34 And Mary said unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing 

1 Or, endued with grace 

* Many ancient authorities add blessed art thou among women. See ver 42 
Or, grace Gr. unto the ages. 

i26- 2 8] ST LUKE 13 

I know not a man ? 35 And the angel answered and said 
unto her, 

The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, 

And the power of the Most High shall overshadow thee : 
Wherefore also J that which 2 is to be born 3 shall be called holy, 
the Son of God. 

36 And behold, Elisabeth thy kinswoman, 

She also hath conceived a son in her old age : 

And this is the sixth month 

With her that 4 was called barren. 

37 For no word from God shall be void of power. 

38 And Mary said, Behold, the 5 handmaid of the Lord ; be 
it unto me according to thy word. And the angel departed 
from her. 

1 Or, the holy thing which is to be born shall be called the Son of God. 

2 Or, is begotten 3 Some ancient authorities insert of thee. 
4 Or, is 5 Gr. bondmaid. 

26. in the sixth month : cf . vv. 24 and 37. 
Nazareth : see notes on ii 30, 51. 

27. of the house of David. As Joseph was not the father of 
Jesus, vv. 32 and 69 would seem to imply that Mary also was of the 
royal lineage ; and some have supposed that the genealogy given 
by St Luke (iii 23-38) is really Mary s pedigree. It certainly differs 
considerably from that of St Matthew (i 1-17, see note ad loc.). 
But if the two pedigrees are both of Joseph we must remember that 
Jesus would be counted as Joseph s son for purposes of heritage. 
In this sense St Matthew himself asserts (i 12) that Jeconiah (who 
died childless, Jer xxii 30) begat Shealtiel (cf. 1 Chron iii 17). 
It is noted by Dr Chase (Creed and N.T., Macmillan 1920) that both 
the first and the third Evangelists lay stress at once on the Virgin 
Birth (Mat i 18, 20, and Lk i 35) and on the royal descent (Mat i 1, 
ii 2, and Lk i 32), so that neither of them can have regarded the 
two facts as incompatible. 

Mary : Mariam, the Septuagint form of Miriam (Ex xv 20) is 
the form of the name habitually applied by St Luke to the Lord s 
Mother ; the other form Maria is also frequent in the New Testa 

28. Hail, thou that art highly favoured : cf . v. 30. Xcupe 
KfxapLTw/jitvr), almost a play on words Grace to thee, object of 
God s grace. The translation of the Vulgate gratia plena is am 
biguous, and in the Ave Maria gratia plena, &c., has come to be 
interpreted illegitimately as fountain or source rather than 
recipient of favour. 

14 ST LUKE [128-32 

(T. D. Bernard, in his Songs of the Holy Nativity, has an in 
teresting Appendix on the Ave Maria devotion, pp. 157 sqq.) 

29. greatly troubled : alarmed and perplexed, in her own modesty 
(cf. vv. 48, 52), at the splendour of the salutation. Later on (v. 34) 
her modesty lands her in a fresh perplexity. But her true attitude 
throughout is summed up in the final utterance of v. 38. 

30-33. The angel s first and second address to Mary (i 35-37) 
assume a metrical form when rendered into Hebrew. See note on 
i 14, and also p. 18. 

30. Fear not : cf. note on i 12. 

hast found favour with God. Implying her worthiness for the 
unique role designed for her. Without accepting the dogma of the 
Immaculate Conception of the Virgin which logically would have 
to be carried back and back to the first Mother of the Human Race 
or misinterpreting the salutation of v. 28, we must needs see in 
her a vessel uniquely fitted by her own virtue and faith for the 
honour about to be conferred on her. 

31-33. VIRGIN BIRTH PREDICTED. The language of these 
verses, as of the whole section, tells its own tale of sincerity and 
genuineness. St Luke does not impart into it one jot of the more 
developed Christology of his master St Paul, though it is yet not 
inconsistent therewith. The angel announces, and Mary receives, 
remembers, and eventually reports, and the Evangelist faithfully 
records, promises that grew naturally out of the old Messianic 
teaching of the Hebrew Scriptures. The full significance of what 
it meant to be Theotokos, Dei Genetrix, Human Mother of Him who 
was God from all eternity, was not revealed to her now : she could 
not have borne it. The Messianic promise to be fulfilled by this 
nativity has its root in Nathan s prophecy to David, 2 Sam vii 
11-13, 16, cf. 26, and is developed in subsequent Psalm and 
Prophecy Ps Ixxxix 3, 4, Ps cxxxii 11, 17, Is ix 6, 7, xi 1 sqq., &c. 
Even the phrase Son of the Most High is drawn from the atmosphere 
of Messianic expectation, which had been created by the apocalyptic 
literature of recent centuries, such as the Book of Enoch. And the 
phrase itself is applied by our Lord to His followers (vi 35). 

On the Virgin Birth see G. H. Box s monograph, The Virgin 
Birth of Jesus, Isaac Pitman 1916, and A. T. Robertson, op. cit., 
pp. 103-117, A Physician s account of the Birth of Jesus. 

31. and shall call his name JESUS: cf. ii 21. St Matthew, 
who obviously gives the point of view of Joseph, makes an angel 
minister this injunction to him : adding for he shall save his people 
from their sins. Joseph may have got the angelic message first 
from Mary, and made it his own, and the report subsequently 
confused the exact details, or the message may have been delivered 
separately to each of them. 

JESUS is the Greek form of the Old Testament name Jehoshua, 
Joshua, Jeshua ( = The LORD is Salvation). 

32. his father David. See notes on i 16, 17, and 27. 

133-353 ST LUKE 15 

33. the house of Jacob. Here again St Luke has declined to 
colour the narrative with the ideas prevalent around him as he 
wrote. There is no intimation as yet of a wider Israel such as 
St Paul preached and St Luke ministered to at Philippi (see Introd., 
p. xv). Simeon s Song, some ten or eleven months later, carries 
the thought a step further A light for revelation to the Gentiles 
(ii 32). 

34. 35. Those who, like Montefiore, pour scorn on the Virgin 
Birth, would reckon these two verses as a later interpolation, or 
simply expunge the words seeing I know not a man. It may be 
conceded that the mystery of the Virgin Birth as hitherto under 
stood by the Church of Christ is in itself rather congruous with than 
necessary to a genuine belief in the Incarnation of the Son of God. 
But a straightforward reading of the text here (there is no MS 
authority for special treatment of these verses, except the minuscule 
b on which see G. H. Box s Virgin Birth, pp. 223, 225), and of 
the parallel narrative of St Matthew, would seem to lead inevitably 
to the conclusion that the two Evangelists believed in it as a fact 
grounded on the soundest evidence. We have seen that St Luke 
has hitherto avoided the importation of Pauline deductions into 
this early record of fact. The doctrine of the Virgin Birth he could 
hardly have imported from St Paul, because, though the Apostle s 
language born of a woman ... is consistent with it, St Paul 
nowhere in his extant writings asserts it. St Matthew s narrative 
(Mat i 18 sqq.) is more explicit in the matter than St Luke s, and 
is at first sight so inconsistent with it in small details as to be 
obviously independent. If St Matthew can be accused of deducing 
it from a misinterpretation of Is vii 14 which he quotes, the same 
criticism could not by any means be applied to St Luke, in spite of 
the resemblance of v. 31 to that passage. It may be true that the 
announcement of v. 35 carries us beyond the circle of contemporary 
Jewish expectation ; but so did the fact it predicted. 

35-37. In the metrical form of the assumed Hebrew original of 
these verses (see note, p. 6) vv. 35b Wherefore also . . . and 37 For 
no word . . . stand outside the couplets (see text). 

35. The Holy Ghost : first mentioned in v. 15, where John, in 
language paralleled in the Old Testament with reference to the 
Spirit of Jehovah, is to be filled with the Holy Ghost. From the 
first chapter of the Gospel to the last of the Acts (Ac xxviii 25) the 
Holy Spirit is very frequently mentioned in St Luke s writings, and 
in the Gospel especially in these early chapters. See i 41, ii 25-27, 
iii 22, iv 1, 14, 18, x 21, xi 13. The third Gospel, in fact, leads up 
to the climax of His revelation at Pentecost (Ac ii), and the Book 
of Acts has been appropriately termed The Gospel of the Holy 

Here, however, St Luke exercises the self-restraint already 
noticed. The language used to Mary need not and probably would 
not have conveyed to her by anticipation what it means to later 

16 ST LUKE [135-38 

believers, a Holy Ghost who is the third Person of the Blessed 
Trinity in Unity. 

shall come upon tkee . . . overshadow thee. The most straight 
forward interpretation is the traditional one, that in this unique 
case the Spirit, who is the Life-giver to all creation, and normally 
mediates the propagation of life in mankind through fatherhood, 
here dispensed with that means, so that the Son of God in taking 
upon Him our flesh was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the 
Virgin Mary. Of. Mat i 18, 20. 

It is to be noted that while the Holy Spirit figures in the 
annunciation of the birth of the Forerunner as well as in that of the 
Messiah, the language used is very different. John is to be filled 
with the Holy Ghost a frequent expression of St Luke i 41, 67 ; 
Ac ii 4, iv 8, 31, ix 17, xiii 9. John s conception was natural, though 
his austere and temperate spirit was to be specially stimulated by 
the Holy Ghost (cf. Eph v 18), that of Jesus, supernatural. 

36. Elisabeth thy kinswoman. . . . Here is the most divinely- 
human touch in all the angel s message. Mary is brought down 
from heaven to solid earth ; is given, in her own circle, at once 
a concrete example of the fulfilment of the promises of God and 
the suggestion of a confidante with whom she may share her stupen 
dous and overwhelming secret. At once all her loyalty and faith 
is evoked. This touch and the narrative of the Visitation 
(vv. 39-56) proclaim this Gospel at once as the Gospel of Woman 
hood (cf. Introd., p. xli), and strongly suggest that the record of 
chs i and ii not only originated with a woman, but was passed on to 
Luke the Physician not through a man but through a woman. 

37. no word of God shall be void of power. Referring to the child 
of Elisabeth s old age, the angel very appropriately quotes the 
divine message to Sarah, Gen xviii 14. Perhaps the original form 
of the words was, as in the Hebrew, Is anything too hard for the 
LORD ? and St Luke may have, consciously or unconsciously, 
altered it to the Septuagint version, with which he is very familiar, 
in turning the Hebrew record into Greek. Dabbar, which in Gen xviii 
14 means thing, is in Greek translated p^a = word. Cf. ii 15, 
this thing (mg. saying ). Like v. 35b (see text) this verse seems 
to stand outside the metrical form of the original, if a Hebrew 
original be assumed. 

38. Behold, the handmaid of the Lord ; be it unto me according 
to thy word. With these simple words of absolute self -surrender 
she turned the key to open the door of heaven s Love ad aprir 
V alto amor volse la chiave Dante (Purg. x 42). Dante s references 
to this scene are of great frequency and beauty, cf . Purg. xxix 85, 86, 
Par. ix 138, xiv 32, xvi 34, xxxii 94 sq. The whole future of mankind 
depended on her yes or no. All her perplexities have vanished ; 
her surrender is unconditional. She is the Lord s slave-girl, and 
content to be entirely at His divine disposal. 

139-45] ST LUKE 17 

(c) 39-56 The Visitation. The Magnificat 

Mary, following Gabriel s suggestion, goes to visit her kinswoman 
Elisabeth in the Judaean highlands. Elisabeth, responsive to her 
greeting, voices the welcome of her own unborn child to the Mother 
of the Messiah, blesses Mary, and proclaims the sure fulfilment of her 
faith. Mary then pours out her thanksgiving in the Church s most 
famous Canticle. After a visit of three months Mary returns to 
Nazareth. The Visitation has formed the subject of numerous 
sacred pictures of first rank, as by Giotto, in his Padua series of 
frescoes, Tintoretto (in the Scuola di S. Rocco), Ghirlandajo (in the 
Louvre), where Elisabeth kneels to embrace the B.V.M. Better 
known is that of Albertinelli (in the Uffizi), which the Arundel 
Society reproduced. There is a fifteenth-century picture in the 
National Gallery by Patinio (No. 1082). P.L. W. (Childhood) has 
one by A. Pirri. 

39 And Mary arose in these days and went into the hill 
country with haste, into a city of Judah ; 40 and entered 
into the house of Zacharias and saluted Elisabeth. 41 And 
it came to pass, when Elisabeth heard the salutation of Mary, 
the babe leaped in her womb ; and Elisabeth was filled with 
the Holy Ghost ; 42 and she lifted up her voice with a loud 
cry, and said, 

Blessed art thou among women, 
And blessed is the fruit of thy womb. 
43 And whence is this to me, 

That the mother of my Lord should come unto me ? 
44 For behold, 

When the voice of thy salutation came into mine ears, 
The babe leaped in my womb for joy. 
45 And blessed is she that 1 believed ; for there shall be 

a fulfilment 

Of the things which have been spoken to her from the 

1 Or, believed that there shall be 

39. went into the hill country with haste. The journey between 
Nazareth and the Judaean hill-country could be taken, as Jesus 
Himself took it afterwards, either through Samaria (the shortest 
route, but sometimes avoided owing to the hostility of the in 
habitants) or through Peraea, east of Jordan. She goes in haste, 
excited, and, as it were, bursting with her wondrous news ; also 
perhaps eager to see her kinswoman well before the birth of her 

L. 2 

18 ST LUKE [139-46 

child : which indeed (v. 57) followed quickly upon the close of her 

Of the nine Judaean priestly cities enumerated in Jos xxi 13 sqq. 
at least five seem to have been in the hill-country : Hebron, Jattir, 
Juttah, Eshtemoa, Debir. The length of Mary s journey would 
depend partly on which of these cities was Elisabeth s home. They 
were all, however, towards the south end of the Judaean range, where 
it begins to slope towards Beersheba. In any case it would be eight 
days journey or more more than 80 miles, through Ain Karim, 
the traditional site, and much nearer to Jerusalem. It is the in 
fluence of the Septuagint that makes Luke call this town (unknown 
to him) a city of Judah, not of Judea. (P. L.) 

40. saluted Elisabeth, The twofold promise of motherhood had 
woven a new bond of sympathy between the cousins. 

41. was filled with the Holy Ghost : see note on v. 35. Before 
Mary speaks her secret is revealed to Elisabeth, whose unborn child 
pays homage to his unborn Lord. With loud cry of exultation she 

42-45. Blessed art thou. . . . Words attached to the A ve Maria 
(see on v. 28) in the sixteenth-century devotion of that name. 
They are re-echoed by Mary herself in her Magnificat, v. 48, from 
henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. Turned back into 
Hebrew (see note, p. 6) this utterance of Elisabeth falls into two 
strophes, the first of two trimeter, the second of two tetrameter 

46-55. MAGNIFICAT. The three Canticles, Magnificat, Bene- 
dictus, Nunc Dimittis, are so much alike in style and matter, and 
breathe so evidently the same spirit, that some have ventured, 
with Harnack, to assert them imaginative compositions of the 
Evangelist. Of course St Luke, who followed the Graeco-Roman 
literary style in his Preface, might naturally be expected where it 
was aesthetically called for, if not like Thucydides and Livy to 
put into the mouths of his actors appropriate speeches of his own 
invention, at any rate to work up such speeches into literary form 
from brief notes and other indications. Very likely this may be the 
history of some of the speeches in the Acts. But consummate artist 
as he was, and thoroughly familiar with the Old Testament Scriptures 
in the Septuagint, it is hardly conceivable that he could have 
achieved the extraordinary result here claimed for him. Dr Sanday 
says, St Luke always impresses his signature upon his documents, 
and no doubt he has done so in his first two chapters, but (1) there 
are here a number of minute allusions to Jewish Law and Cere 
monial so unlike St Luke s manner, and (2) these chapters so exactly 
hit the attitude of expectancy which existed before the public 
appearance of Christ, that I venture to assert that these two 
chapters and their Songs are essentially the most archaic thing in 
the New Testament. 

Pious Jewish minds, steeped in Old Testament poetry, and in 

146-55] ST LUKE 19 

the literature of more elaborate and definite expectation of which 
the pharisaic Psalms of Solomon (c, 70-40 B. c.) are good examples, 
might well express themselves thus under the exalting influence of 
the Holy Spirit, and bend pre-Gospel language to bridge the gap, 
carrying on revelation almost unconsciously to a point hitherto 
unreached. But could a Gentile convert, writing some 60 or 70 years 
after the event, achieve the same result ? If they are not either 
compositions of the Evangelist or genuine utterances of the people 
to whom he attributes them, they may, in whole or in part, have 
been conscious citations of contemporary Messianic hymns, extant 
now in no other context. So Dr Adeney suggests as a Christian 
woman to-day might, in moments of deep emotion, sing Rock of 
Ages ; and in this case either actually uttered at the times alleged, 
by Mary, Zacharias. and Simeon, or put into their mouths as 
appropriate by St Luke. There seems no adequate reason for 
doubting St Luke s attribution. It is remarkable that all these 
inspired utterances fall naturally into Hebrew verse ; alike those of 
the Angels to Zacharias, to Mary, and to the shepherds, and of the 
Angel choir, and those of men and women moved by the Holy 
Ghost Elisabeth s welcome of Mary, and Simeon s prediction 
to Mary as well as the recognized Canticles. Either the whole 
foundation-document used by St Luke was in Hebrew rather than 
Aramaic, or at least the utterances seem to have been in almost 
classical Hebrew forms. 

The Song of Mary is crowded with reminiscences and phrases 
from Old Testament poetry, as any reference Bible will make clear, 
but its opening and v. 53 so definitely recall the Song of Hannah 
(1 Sam ii 1-10) that we are inevitably drawn to a comparison 
between the two utterances. Hannah s song would certainly seem 
to have been in Mary s mind : and it is quite natural that since the 
Annunciation she should have meditated deeply, not only on 
Messianic Prophecy, but specifically on the figure of Samuel s 
mother the devout woman who was chosen by God in the past to 
give birth to a great Deliverer. 

Magnificat has been attributed by Harnack to Elisabeth (or 
regarded as a free composition of the Evangelist put into Elisabeth s 
mouth) on the ground that the very meagre MSS authority (three 
old Latin versions, supported by a few patristic references, which 
substitute Elisabeth for Mary in this verse) is corroborated by the 
situation. Elisabeth s case resembles Hannah s ; Mary s does not. 
But it is noticeable that the verse really in point for Elisabeth, 
Yea, the barren hath borne seven (1 Sam ii 5), does not appear 
in our Canticle. Perhaps, as some MSS have neither name, St Luke 
may have written and [she] said. Cf. G. H. Box, Virgin Birth, 
pp. 226, 227. 

But in other respects comparison between the two songs 
emphasizes a contrast in spirit that is even greater than the resem 
blance. Whilst Mary (says Godet) celebrates her happiness 


20 ST LUKE [146-55 

with deep humility and holy restraint, Hannah sui renders herself 
completely to the feeling of personal triumph, with her very first 
words breaking forth into cries of indignation against her enemies. 
There is also a contrast noticeable (A. E. Brooke) between the spirit 
of these songs (Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis) and the fervid spirit 
of the contemporary Zealots. Here it is the hopes of the Chasidim, 
rather than of the Nationalists, that find expression. The scope of 
the thought will be found to widen out steadily, the first stanza, 
vv. 46-50, being mainly personal ; the second (yv. 51-55) ending 
on a note that suggests the promise of Gen xxii 18, in thy seed 
shall all the nations of the earth be blessed. 

46 And Mary said, 

My soul doth magnify the Lord, 

47 And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. 

48 For he hath looked upon the low estate of his hand 

maiden : 

For behold, from henceforth all generations shall call 
me blessed. 

49 For he that is mighty hath done to me great things ; 
And holy is his name. 

50 And his mercy is unto generations and generations 
On them that fear him. 

51 He hath shewed strength with his arm ; 

He hath scattered the proud 2 in the imagination of 
their heart. 

52 He hath put down princes from their thrones, 
And hath exalted them of low degree. 

53 The hungry he hath filled with good things ; 
And the rich he hath sent empty away. 

54 He hath holpen Israel his servant, 
That he might remember mercy 

55 (As he spake unto our fathers) 
Toward Abraham and his seed for ever. 

1 Gr. bondmaiden. 2 Or, by 

46-50. We notice the mingling of exultant joy and deep humility 
with exquisite modesty of reticence and reverential adoration. 

In v. 50 she ranges herself with all God-fearing people, claiming 
for them the same mercy which has so blessed her. 

This forms the transition to the second stanza, according to our 
traditional arrangement. Aytoun, in his Hebrew version, makes 

1 51-61] ST LUKE 21 

w. 46-48 the first stanza of two tetrameter couplets, vv. 49-55 the 
second, of couplets chiefly in pentameter. 

51-55. In this speaks the true child of Israel, the peasant scion 
of the ancient royal house. She sees God s people under alien 
domination an Edomite ruler, by the grace of Rome she sees 
worldliness and bigotry among the official leaders of religion. The 
world is a scene of usurpation : God must and will strike in to set it 
right. The Rod of Jesse s stem has been promised . . . on whom 
rests the spirit of the LOBD as a spirit of government in truth and 
righteousness, and whose reign is the dynasty of God (Bernard, 
p. 60). Contrast this pure hunger and thirst after righteous 
ness with the spirit of personal triumph that breathes through 

56 And Mary abode with her about three months, and 
returned unto her house. 

(d) 57-79 Birth and Circumcision of John. The Benedictus 

The narratives of the annunciation and birth of the Herald and 
the King are necessarily dovetailed into one another, yet the 
atmosphere of each is quite distinct. The Visitation forms a 
beautiful connecting link between them. 

Elisabeth s child is duly born, and amid congratulations of her 
circle of friends the ceremony of circumcision takes place. At this 
ceremony, as among Christians at baptism, the child s name is 
given. Elisabeth, mindful of the angel s injunction (v. 13) declines 
to name him after his father, and will have him called John. 
Zacharias, still dumb, and apparently deaf also, is appealed to, 
since John is not one of the family names. He signs for a wax 
tablet and writes thereon His name is John, and immediately 
recovers his speech, to the amazement of the company. Then, 
under an inspiration like Mary s, he bursts forth into a prophetic 
song of praise. 

57 Now Elisabeth s time was fulfilled that she should be 
delivered ; and she brought forth a son. 58 And her neigh 
bours and* her kinsfolk heard that the Lord had magnified his 
mercy towards her ; and they rejoiced with her. 59 And it 
came to pass on the eighth day, that they came to circumcise 
the child ; and they would have called him Zacharias, after 
the name of his father. 60 And his mother answered and 
said, Not so ; but he shall be called John. 61 And they said 
unto her, There is none of thy kindred that is called by this 

22 ST LUKE [162-66 

name. 62 And they made signs to his father, what he would 
have him called. 63 And he asked for a writing tablet, and 
wrote, saying, His name is John. And they marvelled all. 
64 And his mouth was opened immediately, and his tongue 
loosed, and he spake, blessing God. 65 And fear came on all 
that dwelt round about them : and all these sayings were 
noised abroad throughout all the hill country of Judaea. 
66 And all that heard them laid them up in their heart, 
saying, What then shall this child be ? For the hand of the 
Lord was with him. 

59. on the eighth day : in accordance with the Mosaic Law (see 
Gen xvii 9-14) so too in our Lord s case, ii 21. 

62. made signs to. This seems to assume that Zacharias was 
deaf as well as dumb. The Syr -Sin. version has : and they also 
spoke to the father (P. L.). 

66. laid them up in their heart. So the Evangelist speaks of the 
Blessed Virgin (ii 19, 51) as storing up the memories of this won 
derful time. In each case he seems to be hinting at the ultimate 
source of his information (cf. note on p. 4). 

67-79. BENEDICTTJS. If we could see reason for the appro 
priateness of Magnificat, with its teeming Old Testament allusions, 
in the mouth of the devout peasant maiden, still more obviously 
appropriate is this poetic summary of Old Testament prophecy 
from the lips of the aged priest. Every line echoes holy and familiar 
phrases (see Reference Bible), and there has been noted a special 
affinity with the Benedictions used in the Temple before the 
daily sacrifice. 

Benedictus, like Magnificat, falls naturally into two stanzas. 
These are of two strophes each. The first two strophes, 68-71 and 
7275, summarize and enunciate afresh the gracious promises of 
Jehovah on which the Messianic Hope is based. This first half of 
the song announces the Davidic Messiah, and proclaims (against 
the actual background, gloomy alike from the political, social, 
and religious points of view) deliverance from external foes and an 
unhindered opportunity for the expression of the true life of God s 
People glad service of the LORD, unwearied and unafraid. 

The second stanza third and fourth strophes (vv. 76-78 and 79) 
is still richer and more beautiful in thought and phrase. The first 
strophe, taking up the angel s word about the child (v. 17), apostro 
phizes the newly-circumcised member of the Church of the Old 
Covenant, as prophet, forerunner, harbinger of redemption ; the 
second hails the brightening dawn of God s Kingdom. The strophes, 
as arranged by Aytoun, form (a) four tetrameter lines, (6) three 
trimeter couplets (of which each line begins with the Hebrew 
Lamed), (c) four hexameter lines, (d) one tetrameter couplet. 

167-79] ST LUKE 23 

67 And his father Zacharias was filled with the Holy 
Ghost, and prophesied, saying, 

68 Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel ; 

For he hath visited and wrought redemption for his 

69 And hath raised up a horn of salvation for us 
In the house of his servant David 

70 (As he spake by the mouth of his holy prophets which 

have been since the world began), 

71 Salvation from our enemies, and from the hand of all 

that hate us ; 

72 To shew mercy towards our fathers, 
And to remember his holy covenant ; 

73 The oath which he sware unto Abraham our father, 

74 To grant unto us that we being delivered out of the 

hand of our enemies 
Should serve him without fear, 

75 In holiness and righteousness before him all our days. 

76 Yea and thou, child, shalt be called the prophet of the 

Most High : 

For thou shalt go before the face of the Lord to make 
ready his ways ; 

77 To give knowledge of salvation unto his people 
In the remission of their sins, 

78 Because of the Hender mercy of our God, 
2 Whereby the dayspring from on high 3 shall visit us, 

79 To shine upon them that sit in darkness and the 

shadow of death ; 
To guide our feet into the way of peace. 

1 Or, heart of mercy 2 Or, W herein 

3 Many ancient authorities read hath visited us. 

67. prophesied. Zacharias, like Ezekiel, was both priest and 
prophet, for the moment at least. Inspiration gave him special and 
intimate insight into the mind and will of God ; which is the heart 
of prophecy. Prediction is only one aspect of the gift ; but that 
too is here couched, as often in Old Testament prophets, in the 
prophetic past tense, which is virtually past, present, and future 
in one, visualizing events and movements from the plane of eternity. 
What God wills is a fact, even though it be not yet generally 

24 ST LUKE [169-76 

69. a horn of salvation : cf . the end of Hannah s song : He shall 
. . . exalt the horn of his anointed (1 Sam ii 10) ; the agricultural 
metaphor by which the horn of the ox stands for strength is common 
in the Old Testament. It is well rendered in our Prayer Book 
version by a mighty salvation. 

In the house of his servant David. See note on i 16, 17. The 
tabernacle or hut of "David in Amos s phrase (Am ix 11) was, 
indeed, to all appearance in a ruined condition. An Edomite 
(cf. Am ix 12) was on the throne, and the last scions of the old 
Royal House were living the obscure life of poor artisans away from 
David s city, in an obscure village of Galilee. 

Three people alone had shared, during the last three months, 
the secret of its coming restoration, and but a little of the truth can 
as yet have been revealed to them ; little, especially of the manner 
of its fulfilment. But the fact is henceforth common property. 

72. To shew mercy towards our fathers, i.e. in faithful fulfil 
ment to their children. But perhaps also with the implication that 
the fathers living unto God, cf. xx 38 would be conscious of 
such fulfilment. 

covenant. See Gen xv. 

73. The oath. See Gen xxii 16, 17 ; cf. also Micah vii 20, 
Thou wilt perform the truth to Jacob, and the mercy to Abraham, 
which thou hast sworn unto our fathers from the days of old. 

74. 75. serve him without fear, &c. : cf. Collect for Fifth Sunday 
after Trinity : That thy Church may joyfully serve thee in all 
godly quietness. This unhindered and unmolested fulfilment of 
the purpose for which we were created is the theme of Dante s 
De Monarchia. The predatory instincts of men and nations have 
been its enemies all through history : Zacharias predicts the com 
plete subdual of these under the Monarchia of the Messianic King. 
The same hope is now placed in a League of Nations founded on 
a basis of Christian principle. 

76. Yea and thou, child. . . . Here begins the second stanza, 
as the aged father turns and addresses the infant John. 

the prophet. The canon of the Prophets was already closed 
when Ben-Sirach s grandson wrote (c. 130 B. c.) his preface to the 
Book Ecclesiasticus. My grandfather Jesus, he says, gave 
himself much to the reading of the Law, and the Prophets, and the 
other books of our fathers. Apocalyptic writers had been busy 
ministering hope and courage to a depressed people ; but of the 
whole period since Malachi, the Psalmist s words might be used 
(Ps Ixxiv 9) : 

We see not our signs : 

There is no more any prophet ; 

Neither is there among us any that knoweth how long. 

John, in the spirit and power of Elijah, was to revive the true 
spirit of prophecy. In virtue of his office as herald of the imme- 

1 7 6-8o] ST LUKE 25 

diate coming of the Kingdom, our Lord proclaims him as much 
more than a prophet (vii 26, 27). 

77. to give knowledge of salvation. The message of Deliverance 
had been mishandled by Jewish teachers, who tended to centre 
all their Messianic ideas in the thought of temporal blessings and 
a temporal Conqueror and ruler. This bred the political-religious 
fanaticism of the Zealots, which was among the prime causes of 
the destruction of Jerusalem and extinction of the Jewish State. 
On the spiritual side the Pharisees, who had done splendid service 
in the past, were now, as the Gospel story makes clear, tending 
to narrow down the means of salvation to an elaborate and 
mechanical legality, and to interpret salvation itself in terms of 
self -righteousness . 

The Ministry of the Messiah had to be preceded, as Godet says, 
by that of another divine messenger, because the very notion of 
salvation was falsified in Israel, and had to be corrected before 
salvation could be realised. 

in the remission of their sins : this pre-requisite of salvation, 
to which repentance is itself a necessary preliminary, had been left 
out of sight. It is to be the great theme of John s preaching. 
See iii 3 sqq. 

78. the dayspring from on high. This beautiful phrase, when 
analysed, involves a contradiction in terms ; the first thought is of 
the upspringing of the dawn from the eastern horizon, the second, 
that the Gospel-dawn breaks on us from above. The mixture 
of metaphors is quite in the Hebrew manner, e. g. in Is xxviii 18, 
When the overflowing scourge shall pass through, then ye shall 
be trodden down by it, we have in one half -verse at least three 
metaphors combined a flood, a whip, and a trampling host ! 

79. upon them that sit in darkness, <$cc. The background of 
this verse is clearly the great prophecy Is ix, wherein the Prince 
of Peace is first named. There light is predicted for the desolated 
region of Galilee Zebulun and Naphtali the Northern Kingdom 
recently ravaged and depopulated by Assyria. This gives point 
to St Matthew s citation of Is ix 1, 2 in connexion with the opening 
of our Lord s Galilean ministry (Mat iv 12-16). Cf. also Is Ix 1-3. 
Vistas of meaning lie in these words, no doubt beyond what 
Zacharias saw as he uttered them. Galilee of the Gentiles 
suggests the bolder and more definite universalism (again perhaps 
only partly perceived when uttered) of the Nunc Dimittis (ii 32) : 
and, originating from this passage, but enriched by the frequent 
use of the light and darkness metaphor throughout the New 
Testament, the bearing of the Gospel light to illumine heathen 
darkness has become a most familiar metaphor for the evangeliza 
tion of the world. 

80 And the child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, and 
was in the deserts till the day of his shewing unto Israel. 

26 ST LUKE [I8o-lli 

80. was in the deserts, John s ascetic life began in early boy 
hood. Meanwhile Jesus, who says of himself that he came eating 
and drinking (vii 34) purposely sharing as far as might be the 
normal experiences of human life was growing up quietly in the 
home at Nazareth. 1 

(e) II 1-20 The Birth of Christ 

The year of the Nativity is still subject of discussion. That 
St Luke s object was to give a definite unmistakable date (as also 
in iii 1-2) is obvious ; but it is difficult to harmonize the Evangelist s 
indications with known synchronisms from secular history. If the 
first Gospel is to be trusted (cf . Lk i 5) Christ was born during the 
reign of Herod, who died in the year styled 4 B. c. according to 
our inaccurate traditional reckoning ; and the Nativity should 
apparently be dated two years at least before his death (Mat ii 16). 
This would bring us to 7 or 6 B.C., and would rule out the known 
census under Quirinius in A. D. 6-7, after the deposition of Archelaus 
when Judaea became a Roman Province. This census is recorded 
by Josephus, and mentioned also by St Luke himself in Ac v 37. 

Sir Wm. Ramsay s researches have recently done much to 
clear up this question and to suggest that, allowing for our ignorance 
on many points, St Luke, who has proved so remarkably accurate 
where we can really test him, may be trusted where positive proof 
is wanting. Ramsay notes that, besides giving us a date, the 
Evangelist sets the Birth of Jesus amid its proper surroundings as 
an event in the development of Roman imperial relations. 2 

The Narrative itself the world s greatest classic, we might 
almost venture to call it compares strikingly, in its naturalness, 
restraint, and dignity with the extravagances of Apocryphal 
Gospels on the same theme. Like the two previous episodes and 
the one that follows, it finds expression in a song. The Gospels 

1 In Art the young St John, usually accompanied by n Lamb in view of his 
future proclamation (Jn i 29) of the Agnus Dei. is usually grouped with the Holy 
Family. Of this there are countless examples by the best Masters. The National 
Gallery contains one by Leonardo da Vinci (No. 1093), and an unfinished one by 
Michelangelo (No. 809). A charming representation by Bernardino Luini (Prado, 
Madrid) shows the Baptist and his Divine Cousin embracing. Occasionally St John 
is depicted alone as by B. Luini (in Ambrosiana, Milan, and in S. Maria degli 
Angioli at Lugano). A very striking picture of an inspired boy of about 8 or 9 years 
old in the desert is Sir Joshua Reynolds in the National Gallery. Donatello s 
wonderful statue in Florence represents him as a little older. 

2 Not only are the statements in Lk ii 1-3 true, they are also in themselves 
great statements, presenting to us large historical facts, world-wide administrative 
measures, vast forces working on human society through the ages. He sets before 
us the circumstances in which Jesus Christ came to be born in Bethlehem, not at 
Nazareth, as caused by the interplay of mighty cosmic forces. (Recent Discovery , 
p. 304.) 

Cf. McLachlan, St Luke, the Man, &c., 1920, p. 26. There is a census return 
among the Oxyrhynchus Papyri which Drs Grenfell and Hunt on good evidence 
date A. D. 19-20 (Oxyr. Papyri ii 209 ff.). 

II i-7l ST LUKE 27 

are never more quiet and simple than when they are narrating 
redemptive facts of world- wide moment. 

II Now it came to pass in those days, there went out 
a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all Hhe world should be 
enrolled. 2 This was the first enrolment made when Quirinius 
was governor of Syria. 3 And all went to enrol themselves, 
every one to his own city. 4 And Joseph also went up from 
Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, to the city 
of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the 
house and family of David ; 5 to enrol himself with Mary, 
who was betrothed to him, being great with child. 6 And it 
came to pass, while they were there, the days were fulfilled that 
she should be delivered. 7 And she brought forth her firstborn 
son ; and she wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him 
in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn. 

1 Gr. the, inhabited earth. 

1. a decree from Ccesar Augustus, that all the world should be 
enrolled. The first Roman Emperor, 31 B. c. A. D. 14, prepared 
with his own hand a rationarium imperil, a kind of Domesday 
Book with a description of the subject kingdoms and provinces 

v. with the taxes direct and indirect, and such a census as is implied 
here would be a useful means of collecting the necessary informa 
tion. Taking the well-known census under Quirinius in A. D. 6-7, 
we may add the consideration that, according to the evidence of 
Egyptian papyri, in Egypt at any rate a census was taken every 
fourteen years ; and if this census was general in the East, a 
previous census would fall just about 7-6 B. c., which would be 
St Matthew s date for the Nativity. If we assume that Herod s 
attempts to allay Jewish prejudice (see note on w. 3-4) delayed 
the execution of the order, 6 or 5 B. c. would fit in exactly with the 
requirements of the situation. 

The results of Ramsay s scattered arguments and discussions 
are conveniently collected by A. T. Robertson, op. cit., pp. 118-129. 

2. when Quirinius was governor of Syria. We know that 
Quirinius was Procurator of Judaea in A. D. 6 ; but that is not the 
style St Luke gives him here, and the implied title here ( leader ) 
is a vague one. which serves also as translation for Legatus or Dux, 
and there is evidence that Quirinius was holding office in Syria side 
by side with the civil pro-consul Sentius Saturninus, on a military 
command against the Homonadenses, in the year immediately 
preceding. That may be the reference here, or leader may mean 
that Augustus put him in charge of the census when Varus, 
Saturninus s successor, was pro-consul. 

28 ST LUKE [II 3, 4 

3, 4. every one to his own city. This cumbrous form of enrolment 
of whole families in the place to which each belongs has been 
laughed at by critics, as a clumsy invention of the writer, to 
allow for the birth of Jesus at Bethlehem instead of Nazareth. 
But Ramsay claims to have found precedent for it ; and its employ 
ment on this occasion might well be due to Herod s wish to give 
a Jewish tone to the ceremony, and so in some degree to allay the 
prejudice against numbering the people (cf . 2 Sam xxiv ; 1 Chron 
xxi), intensified, no doubt, by the fact that the orders emanated 
from the Roman conqueror. Deissmann (Light fr. Anc. East, p. 268) 
gives facsimile, text, and translation of an edict of a Governor of 
Egypt A. D. 104 : Gaius Vibius Maximus Prefect of Egypt saith : 
The enrolment by household being at hand, it is necessary to 
notify all who for any cause so ever are outside their homes to 
return to their domestic hearths, that they may also accomplish 
the customary dispensation of enrolment, and continue stedfastly 
in the husbandry that belongeth to them. 

4. Joseph . . . went up from Galilee . . . into Judcea. Joseph 
and Mary would take the same road which she had taken to visit 
Elisabeth. There was a Bethlehem also in Galilee, within a few 
miles of Nazareth, and some have supposed a confusion with this ; 
but the tradition of Bethlehem-Judah is too strong to need support. 
Ramsay notes (Recent Discovery, p. 304) how Luke assumes the 
birth in Bethlehem as familiar to his readers, and tells us how it 
came about. St Matthew (i 28, ii 5 sq.) emphasizes its fulfilment 
of prophecy. 

because he was of the house and family of David. Blass notes 
(Philol. Gosp., E.T. p. 170 sq.) that the Western text reads because 
they were of the (cf. iii 23). The claims of the Lord s Brethren 
to royalty are said to have been brought before Domitian in the 
persons of the grandsons of St Jude, and the Emperor s Herod-like 
fears to have been allayed by the spectacle of their toil-worn hands. 
(Eusebius, iii 20, quoting from Hegesippus.) 

The Jewish families kept their pedigrees carefully, as witness 
the books of Chronicles (1 Chron i viii ; cf. Ezra vii 1 sqq., 
Neh xi 4 sqq., xii 10, 11), and the descendants of the House of 
David might well be particular in keeping theirs (iii 23 sqq., cf. 
Mat i) though fallen to a humble condition since the days of 
Zerubbabel. The use in general mouths of the name Son of 
David as applied to Jesus (xviii 39 and Mat xxi 9) may imply 
that the royal descent was common knowledge ; and that may 
have made it prudent for the family to leave their native Bethlehem, 
and remove to a district farther away from the court of Herod. 

Bethlehem. The Messiah according to Jewish tradition [cf. 
Mat ii 5], was to be born in Bethlehem. Cf. P. Ber, 5a ; Midrash 
Echa i 16. Prof. G. Dalman suggested in 1919 that David was 
anointed king by Samuel (1 Sam xvi 13) near the church of the 
Nativity. (P. L.) 

II 5-8] ST LUKE 29 

5. who was betrothed to him. According to St Matthew (i 24) 
Joseph had already taken unto him his wife, i.e. married her ; 
though he had not lived with her as a husband (Mat i 25). The 
betrothal, with its religious ceremony, was a fast bond, and 
unfaithfulness during the year it lasted would have been counted 
adultery. This is the point of Mat i 18, 19. 

7. her firstborn son : there is no necessary implication that 
she had other children afterwards : Every male that openeth 
the womb (v. 23) is firstborn in this sense, whether other children 
follow or not. 

she wrapped him . . . inn. The details of this wondrous picture, 
so familiar through art and song, have, like the Cross, acquired 
a symbolic splendour which makes it difficult for us to realize them 
in all their sordidness and discomfort. He came unto his own, 
and ... his own received him not. Already on the day of His birth 
the Son of man hath not where to lay his head. Giovanni 
Papini, in his recent Storia di Cristo (Florence, Vallecchi 1920), 
has some very vigorous remarks on this point (pp. 1-5). 

She on whom the world s future depended was crowded out by 
the throng of more self-important people who had come up for 
the enrolment. Weary and distressed, she passed unnoticed from 
the caravanserai where no place or, at least, no privacy could be 
found. Any one who has travelled in Palestine and mixed among 
the native peasants knows that, notwithstanding their hospitality, 
it is impossible to have privacy. And the inns were public places, 
where no one had a right to this (P. L.). It is not clear from the 
text whether the stable in which she gave birth to the Saviour 
was attached to the inn or not, or whether it was an open enclosure 
(as early Christian art might indicate) or a cave or grotto, as per 
sistent tradition maintains. Whether, again, the word translated 
manger is properly a manger or trough, or, as it is rendered in 
Lk xiii 15, a stall. It is noticeable that the traditional cave 
or grotto which dates back not only to the building of the 
Basilica of the Nativity but as far as Justin Martyr (Tryph. 78), 
has also some inferential MS authority, for Epiphanius reads here 
iv <t>a.Tvy Kal [ev] crTr^Xato) in a manger and in a cave (Blass, 
Philol. Chap-* E.T. p. 165 sq.). Westcott and Hort, N.T. ii 52, 
say doubtless in a confusion with the Apocryphal Book of James. 
So, too, the word here translated inn is rendered guest-chamber 
in xxii 11 and may have been a lodging promised but not kept free. 
But there is no conclusive reason against the general contour of the 
picture that has meant so much to countless generations of believers. 

8-20. THE ANGELS AND THE SHEPHERDS. The descendant of the 
Shepherd King Himself the ideal Shepherd of souls (Jn x) 
has shepherds as his first devotees. St Luke has taught us and 
all the world that the message of the angels is to every man who 
is doing his duty and earning his living like the shepherds (A. E. 

30 ST LUKE [H8-I2 

8 And there were shepherds in the same country abiding 
in the field, and keeping J watch by night over their flock. 
9 And an angel of the Lord stood by them, and the glory 
of the Lord shone round about them : and they were sore 
afraid. 10 And the angel said unto them, 
Be not afraid ; for behold, 

I bring you good tidings 
Of great joy 

which shall be to all the people : 

11 For there is born to you 

this day in the city of David 
A Saviour, 

which is 2 Christ the Lord. 

12 And this is the sign unto you ; 

Ye shall find 

A babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, 
and lying in a manger. 

1 Or, night-watches 2 Or, Anointed Lord 

8. keeping watch by night. The flocks in Palestine, says 
Montefiore, are not out at night in December. If this were true, 
it would not militate against St Luke s narrative, for he gives no 
hint of the month. It might prove that the observance of Christmas 
on Dec. 25 which began rather late, and in the West, is due to 
a misconception. If Zacharias were on duty (see note on i 5) in 
April 6 B. c., it would throw the Nativity of Christ into the month 
of June. But there is evidence (Edersheim) that the sheep set 
apart for the Temple Sacrifices were kept out-of-doors all through 
the year in the neighbourhood of Jerusalem. 

9. an angel of the Lord : this is the third appearance of an 
angel in this Gospel (cf. i 11 and 26). Was it Gabriel ? We are 
not told : but in that case we should have expected the angel. 

they were sore afraid : the almost inevitable result of contact 
with the supernatural. Cf. i 13, 30 and notes. 

10. / bring you good tidings, &c. : literally, I evangelize you 
great joy. The root word is the Greek equivalent of our Gospel. 
Here indeed is the Gospel in brief ! 

to all the people, i. e. the Chosen People : not yet to all nations 
(cf. v. 32a). 

11. A Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. Reversing the order 
of the words, we have our traditional phrase The Lord Jesus 
( = Saviour) Christ. But Christ ( = anointed) here is the equivalent 
of Messiah the anointed Deliverer whom all Judaism was 
expecting. We might render Lord Messiah. 

II i 3 , i 4 ] ST LUKE 31 

13-14. THE GLOEIA IN EXCELSIS. This song of the Angel- 
choir has, like the other three which St Luke has preserved, been 
taken up by the church into liturgical use. In the famous Codex 
Alexandrinus (end of fifth century) which is the pride of the British 
Museum, it occurs at the end of the Psalter with other Canticles, 
and is described as a Morning Hymn ; by the fifth or sixth 
century it was already in use in the West at the Eucharist. Our 
Prayer Book reformers moved it from the opening of the Liturgy 
to the close. 

13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of 
the heavenly host praising God, and saying, 
14 Glory to God in the highest, 

And on earth 1 peace among 2 men in whom he is well 

1 Many ancient authorities read peace, good pleasure among men. 

2 Gr. men of good pleasure. 

14. in the highest realms : the heaven of heavens (2 Chron 
ii 6, vi 18). 

among men in whom, &c. : reading ev avOpw-n-ois evSo/aa? with 
the vast preponderance of MS and earliest patristic authority 
though the A.V. reading (euSo/aa) is the prevailing post-Nicene 
reading. See Dr Hort s very instructive note in W. and H., N.T. 
ii, pp. 53-56. It is remarkable that while Codex Alexandrinus 
(see last note) reads eiSo/aa in the Gloria as a Liturgical Hymn, 
the same scribe has evoWas in the text of St Luke. In the A.V. 
the song is a tristich : 

Glory to God in the highest ; 

And on earth peace, 
Good will towards men. 

but the second and third lines stand together in antithesis to the 
first. In the R.V. it is a distich. The two lines are of unequal 
weight, but the arrangement is admitted as possible by Dr Aytoun, 
and finds abundant parallels in the Psalter. Dr Hort suggests 
another arrangement which gives two well-balanced lines : 

Glory to God in the highest and on earth, 
Peace among men of his good pleasure. 

Dr Aytoun, while admitting R.V. text, counts it heavy and 
clumsy, and in the interest of a more perfect Hebrew metre would 
expunge the disputed word evSoxtas (evSo/aa) as an interpreta 
tive gloss, and read : 

Glory in the highest to God 
And on earth peace among men. 

On the whole we may best perhaps retain the R.V. rendering, 
though without interpreting it as the Vulgate hominibus bonae 

32 ST LUKE [H 14-20 

voluntatis is often rendered, men of good-will, i. e. good men of 
a right spirit and intention. The Hebraistic Greek would rather 
mean men in whom God is well pleased. But this also may be 
said to restrict the range of the gift of peace to men of faith 
those who are ready to accept and use the boon God offers. 

It has been pointed out (cf. G. H. Box, Virgin Birth, p. 112) 
that Lk xix 38 offers a remarkable parallel to this : 

Peace in Heaven 

And glory in the Highest. 

15 And it came to pass, when the angels went away from 
them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us 
now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this Hhing that is come 
to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us. 16 And 
they came with haste, and found both Mary and Joseph, and 
the babe lying in the manger. 17 And when they saw it, they 
made known concerning the saying which was spoken to them 
about this child. 18 And all that heard it wondered at the 
things which were spoken unto them by the shepherds. 
19 But Mary kept all these 2 sayings, pondering them in her 
heart. 20 And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising 
God for all the things that they had heard and seen, even as it 
was spoken unto them. 

1 Or, saying 2 Or, things 

19. Mary kept all these sayings (or things), pondering them in her 
heart. Here and in v. 51 St Luke not only illumines the character 
of the Blessed Virgin and helps us to understand how she accumu 
lated by meditation the gems she set in the Magnificat ; but he 
also hints at the source from which his matter for these two chapters 
was ultimately drawn (cf. note on i 66). 

pondering: a-uvfiaXXova-a. Hobart (M.L. viii 141) points out 
that this verb, peculiar to St Luke in the N.T., is common in Hippo 
crates, and occurs also in other medical writers. 

The Nativity, with ox and ass and Angels and Shepherds (and 
sometimes, by an anachronism, Magi also) adoring, is perhaps the 
most favourite of all subjects of Christian Art from the age of Giotto 
to the present day. The early painters loved to depict angels 
clustered on the mean roof of a broken shed, and peering adoringly 
through its holes. There is a typical and beautiful example in the 
National Gallery (No.il034) by Botticelli, with a perfect riot of Angels, 
reproduced by P. L. W. (Childhood), p. 26. Tintoretto (Scuola di S. 
Rocco, Venice) depicts the angels peeping through (cf. 1 Pet i 12). 

Next to it, if not equal in vogue, has been the picture of Madonna 

1120,21] ST LUKE 33 

and Child together alone, or surrounded by various Saints of 
which a typical example is that Madonna degli Ansidei of Rafael, 
which is the glory of our National Gallery, or his almost equally 
familiar Madonna di San Sisto (now in the Royal Gallery at Dresden), 
of which an artist has said, A consciousness of His divine mission 
... is already shewn with singular eloquence in the eyes so intense, 
so absorbed, so full of heavenly mystery, of the Bambino who, in 
the arms of the Madonna di San Sisto, blesses the world. 

(f ) 21 The Circumcision of Christ 

Circumcision was by no means confined to the Hebrews in the 
ancient world. It has been widely practised throughout the globe 
even by tribes of Africa and Polynesia, and by the Aztecs and other 
peoples of Central America. Distinctive of the Hebrew religion are 
its entirely religious significance and the fact that it was performed 
in infancy, when least painful. 

Religiously it was to the Jews symbolical of a covenant with 
God, and as such dates back to Abraham (Gen xvii 9 sqq.). Like 
every other covenant it is sealed with blood. The shedding of blood 
was an essential feature, and the blood seems to have represented 
tha offering of the life to God. Dr Oesterley quotes words to this 
effect from a modern Jewish Circumcision Service : From this 
eighth day and henceforth may his blood be accepted, and may the 
Lord his God be with him. 

Thus the Circumcision of Christ becomes not only a fulfilling of 
the Law, but also . . . a " parable " of the Crucifixion. Cf. Keble, 
Christian Year : 

The year begins with Thee, 

And Thou beginn st with woe, 
To let the world of sinners see 

That blood for sin must flow. 

21 And when eight days were fulfilled for circumcising 
him, his name was called JESUS, which was so called by the 
angel before he was conceived in the womb. 

when eight days were fulfilled Cf. i 59. Even if the eighth day 
were a Sabbath, the child must be circumcised then, except in 
case of sickness or other urgent cause. Even the Circumcision of 
our Lord has been made the subject of Christian Art, and is nobly 
treated by Giovanni Bellini (Nat. Gall. No. 145), while the National 
Gallery contains pictures also by Luca Signorelli (No. 1128) and 
Marco Marzial (No. 803). 

his name was called JESUS. See i 31 and note. Boys were 
named on their Circumcision Day. girls at birth. 

L. 3 

34 ST LUKE [1122-28 

(g) 22-39 Presentation in the Temple ; Simeon s Song and 
Prediction and testimony of Anna 

This episode, with its reiterated stress on the fulfilling of the 
Law, and its prediction of a better covenant which was to 
supersede the Law, is characteristic of the whole Gospel of the 
Infancy in its mediating position between the Old Testament and 
the New. 

The humble Galilean peasants bringing the poor man s offering, 
the ancient Simeon with the holy Child in his embrace, rapt and 
inspired, and Anna the devout widow, radiant at the sight of the 
Redemption for which she and they had been looking all their days 
... it is a picture worthy of the great artist Luke. 

Simeon s inspired song carries the revelation a step farther than 
the previous Canticles, and prophesies redemption and consolation 
not for Israel only but for the whole world. 

G. Bellini s and Carpaccio s splendid pictures in Venice, and 
many another, e. g. Fra Angelico, Fra Bartolommeo, and later, 
Rembrandt, testify to St Luke s pictorial gift in this episode. 

22 And when the days of their purification according to 
the law of Moses were fulfilled, they brought him up to Jeru 
salem, to present him to the Lord 23 (as it is written in the 
law of the Lord, Every male that openeth the womb shall be 
called holy to the Lord), 24 and to offer a sacrifice according 
to that which is said in the law of the Lord, A pair of turtle 
doves, or two young pigeons. 25 And behold, there was a 
man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon ; and this man 
was righteous and devout, looking for the consolation of 
Israel : and the Holy Spirit was upon him. 26 And it had 
been revealed unto him by the Holy Spirit, that he should not 
see death, before he had seen the Lord s Christ. 27 And he 
came in the Spirit into the temple : and when the parents 
brought in the child Jesus, that they might do concerning 
him after the custom of the law, 28 then he received him 
into his arms, and blessed God, and said, 

22. the days of their purification. Thirty-three days in the case 
of a male birth. See Lev xii 4 ; their, i. e. of the mother and the 
child : strictly, the mother was purified, the child presented and 

Jerusalem : lepouo-aA?;//,. St Luke, like St Paul, has two forms 
of this name, Hierousalem (always in a hieratic sense) and 
Hierosolyma (4 times, ii 22, xviii 31, xix 28, xxiii 7) usually in a 

II 2 3 -2 9 ] ST LUKE 35 

purely geographical sense. Ramsay, Luke the Physician, pp. 51, 52. 
Cf. McLachlan, op. cit., pp. 40-45. 

23. Every male, &c. This is laid down in Ex xxxi 2, 12, as 
a memorial of the slaying of the Egyptian firstborn and saving those 
of the Israelites on the occasion of the original Passover. Like 
other Mosaic ordinances, it may have been a re-enactment, with 
a new significance, of an ancient and barbarous tribal custom. As 
so enacted it involves not the sacrifice of the child, but his redemp 
tion by a substituted offering. 

24. A pair of turtledoves, &c. Lev xii 8. This was a concession 
to the poor : the normal offering required was a lamb and a pigeon 
or dove, Lev xii 6. 

25. a man . . . whose name was Simeon. Evidently a person 
in the world s eyes obscure, like the rest of the holy company. He 
cannot have been the great Rabbi, Simeon, son of Hillel and father 
of Gamaliel, for Gamaliel s father was too young at the time. Nor 
can he have been, as an apocryphal Gospel (Nicodemus) makes him, 
a great priest : though that tradition has left a splendid mark 
in art e. g. in Bellini s famous picture. 

He is a very human figure, and more, a mouthpiece of the Holy 

looking for the consolation of Israel : cf . v. 38. A reminiscence of 
the Deutero- Isaiah s Comfort Ye, or of Jacob s I have waited 
for thy salvation, O LORD (Gen xlix 18). But the consolation 
of Israel in the mouths of the Rabbis meant definitely the days 
of the Messiah. 

29-32. NUNC DIMITTIS. The song is reduced by Dr Aytoun 
(see note, p. 6) to a Hebrew poem of three trimeter couplets. 
These are well represented in the text (R.V. spacing), except that 
the first two (v. 29) would run thus : 

Now lettest thou thy servant depart 
Master, according to thy word, in peace. 

The next couplet consists of vv. 30 and 31, and the third of v. 32. 
It is from Nunc Dimittis that Aytoun takes his start, and he writes 
(J.T.S., vol. xviii, p. 275) as follows : 

4 It would seem quite impossible that such a result should be 
accidental. Something in the way of Hebrew parallels might be 
achieved in Greek, which would still be parallelism of a kind when 
translated into Hebrew ; but perfectly regular Hebrew metre for 
six consecutive lines grouped in couplets, as a result of a literal 
translation from the Greek, can mean but one thing, and that is, 
a metrical Hebrew original for the Greek. I would therefore submit 
this as good evidence that the Nunc Dimittis was originally written 
in Hebrew in accordance with the canons of Hebrew metre followed 
in the majority if not in all of the ancient Hebrew Psalms and 

If this is true it disposes of Prof. Burkitt s theory that in Lk i 
and ii it is the Septuagint (familiar to St Luke) and not any 


36 ST LUKE [1129-32 

Hebrew or Aramaic document that has perceptibly coloured the 
style and language of the whole narrative. 

29 Now lettest thou thy Servant depart, O 2 Lord, 
According to thy word, in peace ; 

30 For mine eyes have seen thy salvation, 

31 Which thou hast prepared before the face of all peoples ; 

32 A light for 3 revelation to the Gentiles, 
And the glory of thy people Israel. 

1 Gr. bondservant. 2 Gr. Master. 3 Or, the unveiling of the Gentiles 

29. In the first couplet Simeon thanks God for the fulfilment 
of the promise recorded in v. 26, that he should not die until he had 
seen the Lord s Christ. He proclaims himself now ready to depart 
when his hour comes, as the sentinel when the hour of his watch 
is over. Servant and Lord should be Slave and Master, terms 
which modern theology tends to eliminate as savouring of the 
Eastern Despot conception of God. But they are not exclusively 
Old Testament ideas : the New Testament writers are eager and 
pro ad to style themselves slaves, bondservants of Christ 
(cf. Rom i 1, Phil i 1, Tit i 1, Jas i 1, 2 Pet i 1, Rev i 1). But this 
word for Master (SCO-TTOT^S) is used here only in the Gospels. 
The verb (aTroAvets) translated lettest . . . depart, if used techni 
cally, may be said to enforce the metaphor here. As applied to 
a slave it means release, emancipate. 

30, 31. In the second couplet Simeon gives the reason why he 
can be glad at the prospect of death. In Is Ix 5 it had been pro 
mised that all flesh shall see the salvation of God : this salvation is 
now embodied in the Infant of eight days old whom Simeon holds 
in his arms, in Him were lodged the powers and destinies of 
salvation for all peoples. Saviour, Salvation (o-wn/p i 47, o-wr^pia 
i 69, o-wn7ptov ii 30), give us the key-note of the three Canticles. 

32. In the third couplet the thought of all peoples is defined 
in terms of Jew and Gentile, and the Gospel truth of the universality 
of God s redeeming purpose bursts upon us. 

The language of these Canticles has close parallels with the 
Psalms of Solomon Pharisaic Canticles of some two generations 
earlier but the thought and aspirations are in direct contrast to 
these, substituting the universalism of Deutero-Isaiah for the 
narrower and more nationalist aspirations of Pharisaism. 

Several passages seem to echo in this couplet (Is xlii 6, lii 10, 
Ix 3), but that which represents it most fully is Is xlix 6 : 

It is too light a thing that thou shouldest be my servant 

To raise, up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved of Israel : 

1 will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, 

That thou mayest be my salvation unto the ends of the earth. 

1133-35] ST LUKE 37 

33 And his father and his mother were marvelling at the 
things which were spoken concerning him ; 

33. his father. The Evangelist throughout adopts the terms in 
which Jesus s relations to Mary and Joseph would ordinarily be 
spoken of, ii 41, 48, iv 22. The genealogy he gives us at iii 23 sqq. 
is probably that of Joseph (see note there). But he takes care to 
support his account of the Virgin birth (i 34, 35) by the recorded 
saying of Jesus Himself (ii 49) in correction of His Mother s phrase. 

34-35. SIMEON S PROPHECY TO MARY. Hitherto there has been 
a naive gladness and exultation, an unmixed joy about the utter 
ances that the Nativity evoked a temper which it would have been 
difficult, if not impossible, to have invented after experience of the 
Lord s Passion. If any passage could be suspected of traces of later 
editing in view of what actually happened, it might be the 
following verses. But here the words are so vague and mysterious 
as to necessitate no such hypothesis. The prophecy falls into two 
tetrameter couplets in Hebrew. (See text.) The burden of the 
prediction is like that of Jn iii 18-21, the inevitable discrimination 
between good and evil which the coming of the true light will effect ; 
or of 2 Cor ii 16, where the same message is to some a savour of 
death, and to others of life. 

34 And Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his 

Behold, this child is set for the falling and rising up 
Of many in Israel ; and for a sign which is spoken 

against ; 

35 Yea, and a sword shall pierce through thine own soul ; 
That thoughts of many hearts may be revealed. 

34. is set for the falling and rising up : as the stone of stumbling 
and rock of offence in Is viii 14 is also a sanctuary ; so the effect 
of this stone (which in Rom ix 33 and 1 Pet ii 6, 7, is combined with 
the precious corner-stone of Is xxviii 16, and identified with Christ) 
will be directly opposite on different classes of men who come into 
contact with it. The obvious example is that of the contrast 
between the two crucified robbers recorded only by St Luke 
(xxiii 39-43). 

a sign which shall be spoken against. Here again we may have 
an echo of Is xi 12, xiii 2, where the LXX uses the same word as here. 

In the open opposition and hostility to the Sign (which 
should induce loyalty as well as acknowledgement) lies the tragedy 
of our Lord s life. The speaking against is more obvious in the 
fourth Gospel, where it is dramatically developed from point to 
point, than in the Synoptists, where it is mainly concentrated in 

38 ST LUKE [II 34-36 

the last scenes. In St Luke, however, we get the prediction of 
this fateful hostility here ; the first appearance of it in Galilee 
iv 28 ; Galilee and Judaea and Jerusalem combined, v 17, 21 ; Phari 
saic contradiction again, v 30, vi 2, cf . vii 39, xv 2 ; unintelligent 
Samaritan opposition, ix 53. Persistent hostility of Scribes, 
Pharisees, and Lawyers is implied in the denunciations of chs xi 
and xii, and in the challenge of xiv 3-6, and perhaps the Parable 
of the Pharisee and Publican, peculiar to St Luke (xviii 9-14). On 
the better side of Pharisaism, see note on v 17. 

35. Yea, and a sword. . . . This sentence seems to pierce like 
a sharp sword into the texture of the prediction so startlingly 
that the A.V. treated it as a parenthesis. But the martyrdom of 
Jesus is the inevitable consequence of the hostility foretold in the 
previous verse, and His martyrdom is His Mother s martyrdom too ; 
cf. Lk xxiii 49, 55, Jn xix 25. This verse is the theme of the great 
mediaeval hymn, STAB AT MATER DOLOROSA. 

That thoughts . . . may be revealed. The Messiah s rejec 
tion will itself lead to a testing of hearts and a sifting such 
as we see reflected in the Acts of the Apostles. Christ crucified will 
be (1 Cor. i 23, 24), unto Jews a stumblingblock, and unto Gentiles 
foolishness ; but unto them that are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ 
the power of God, and the wisdom of God. 

36-38. THE PROPHECY OF ANNA. A saintly and devout woman 
of extraordinary age, endowed (like Deborah and Huldah in the 
Old Testament, and Philip s daughters in the New) with the gift 
of prophecy, adds her testimony to that of Simeon. This episode 
alone fails to provide us with a Canticle : v. 38 records the bare 
substance of her utterance, but not a single phrase or word. Some 
have regarded her as the source of the whole Nativity narrative. 

36 And there was one Anna, a prophetess, the daughter 
of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher (she was 1 of a great age, 
having lived with a husband seven years from her virginity, 
37 and she had been a widow even for fourscore and four 
years), which departed not from the temple, worshipping with 
fastings and supplications night and day. 38 And coming 
up at that very hour she gave thanks unto God, and spake of 
him to all them that were looking for the redemption of 

1 Gr. advanced in many days. 

36. Anna : the Apocryphal Protevangelium of James gives this 
as the name of the Virgin Mary s Mother. 

of the tribe of Asher. Pvepresentatives of the lost ten tribes were 
still to be found. 

II 36-39] ST LUKE 39 

Edersheim says that some beautiful women of the tribe of Asher 
were selected to be wives of priests (L. and T. i, p. 200). 

The rather cumbrous parenthesis, which carries us on to v. 37, 
indicates that she was over 100 years old. Montefiore puts it thus : 
married, say at 15, lived with her husband 7, then a widow 84 years, 
total 106 years. 

37. Her austerity, her long- continued widowhood, and her 
devotion to God s House have made Anna a model for ascetics. 
Cf. 1 Tim v 5. 

38. the. redemption of Jerusalem : another aspect of that 
Messianic Hope which is expressed in v. 25 as the consolation of 
Israel ; and is acclaimed by Zacharias (i 68) as a redemption 
wrought for God s People. 

39. THE RETURN TO NAZARETH. Here would naturally follow 
the events recorded in Mat ii 1-21 : the Visit of the Magi, the 
Flight into Egypt, the Return to Palestine. It is quite clear that 
St Luke knew nothing of these ; not only because the Magi story 
would have so aptly illustrated Nunc Dimittis that we cannot con 
ceive of his deliberately leaving it out ; but also because the 
insertion of the details of what happened before the settlement at 
Nazareth would have added to the accuracy of his narrative. 

The two Gospels are here obviously independent and in detail 
inconsistent. St Matthew, whose first mention both of Bethlehem 
and of Nazareth is in connexion with fulfilment of prophecy, says 
nothing of the original journey of Joseph and Mary from Nazareth 
to Bethlehem (Lk ii 4) ; St Luke, who brings them to Bethlehem 
without any reference to prophecy, is equally silent about the train 
of events which passed between the presentation in the Temple 
and the return to the Galilean home. But the inconsistency does 
not invalidate the substance of either narrative, and a consistent 
story can be pieced out of the two without substantial violence to 
either. 1 Had St Luke had our first Gospel before him, doubtless 
he would have achieved this ; just as in Ac i 1-14 he has amplified, 
defined, and corrected the sketch produced earlier at the end of his 
Gospel (Lk xxiv 44 sqq. See notes ad loc.). 

39 And when they had accomplished all things that were 
according to the law of the Lord, they returned into Galilee, 
to their own city Nazareth. 

1 Thus Godet, for instance, harmonizes the two accounts (cf. Eng. tr. 1875, 
vol. i, p. 155 sq.) : 1. Annunciation to Mary (Lk i) 2. Mary (with or without 
speaking to Joseph) visits Elizabeth (Lk i) 3. After her return Joseph perplexed, 
reassured by Angel (Mat i) 4. Joseph takes Mary ostensibly for his wife (Mat i) 
5. Herod s order following decree of Augustus, brings them to Bethlehem (Lk ii) 
6. Jesus born (Mat i ; Lk ii) 7. Presentation in Temple (Lk ii) On return to 
Bethlehem visit of Magi and escape into Egypt (Mat ii). [From Bethlehem to the 
first Egyptian town is only three or four days journey.] Returned from Egypt 
they give up the idea of settling at Bethlehem, and determine once more to fix 
their abode at Nazareth. 

40 ST LUKE [1139,40 

39. to their own city Nazareth. The words of Nathanael, Jn i 46, 
Can any good thing come out of Nazareth ? are not unnatural in the 
mouth of a Jew who, like all others, looked for the Messiah from 
Bethlehem-Judah. They have been over-emphasized, and inter 
preted as though they implied a universal contempt for Nazareth, 
on account either of its obscurity or its depravity. Neither accusa 
tion appears to be warranted. Nazareth, which is styled city and 
not village in the New Testament (it has now or had before the 
war a population of about 7,000), though retired from the high 
ways of commerce, was within reach and sight of them, and was 
thus in touch with the outer world. Its double aspect of retirement 
and proximity to the great world made it an ideal environment for 
the growing Saviour, just as the same double aspect of Palestine as 
a whole made it an ideal school for God s ancient People (see 
G. A. Smith s Historical Geography, ch xx, pp. 432-434). The hill- 
brow immediately behind the old city (cf. Lk iv 29) commands a 
magnificent view of historic sites and scenes, and such a spectacle 
of far distances (Is xxxiii 17) as is essential to the development 
of the true mystic s outlook. Cf. further, note on v. 51. 

(h) 40-52 The Boyhood of Jesus ; His second appearance in 

the Temple 

St Luke alone of the four Evangelists has anything to say of 
our Lord s Boyhood ; and he sums up in twelve verses the record 
of some thirty years of the life of Jesus. This record is very 
precious and doctrinally important, alike for the implication of the 
episodes of His twelfth year, vv. 41-51, and also for those of the 
two verses, 40 and 52, in which that episode is, as it were, framed. 
This scene, though it has not inspired so many Christian painters 
as the earlier ones, is a favourite in the relief pictures which in 
pilgrimage chapels set forth in series the Mysteries of our 
Redemption, and is often as at the Madonna del Soccorso above 
Lake Como among those most graphically portrayed. In modern 
times Holman Hunt, in his well-known picture, has treated the 
subject in a spirit worthy of early Italian Art. 

40 And the child grew, and waxed strong, ^led with 
wisdom : and the grace of God was upon him. 

1 Gr. becoming full of wisdom. 

40. And the child grew. This and the companion verse 52 
make clear the real humanity of Jesus, advancing, like that of 
merely human children, from the immature to the mature. Com 
pare and contrast the words used of the Baptist, i 80. 

strong, fitted with wisdom : cf . v. 52, advanced in wisdom and 
stature. Both the physical and the intellectual growth (however 
more perfect they may have been than ours) proceeded as in 
normal child, boy, and youth. 

II 4o- 5 i] ST LUKE 41 

ike grace of God was upon him : cf. v. 52, in favour with God. . . . 
This brings us into the spiritual sphere, and implies the spiritualizing 
of both intellectual and physical by the sunshine of God s favour. 
Grace here and favour, v. 52, are both renderings of the same word 
(Xapts), a favourite of St Luke and of his master St Paul, but 
not found elsewhere in the Synoptists. This is the first occurrence 
of the actual word in the third Gospel, though two cognates are 
found in Gabriel s address to Mary, i 28. Cf . Jn i 14. 

41-51. THE FINDING IN THE TEMPLE. The Passover was one 
of the three feasts which every Jewish male was ordered to attend 
every year (Exod xxiii 17). Jesus would now at 12 years old be 
accounted a Son of the Law. The other two feasts, Pentecost 
and Tabernacles, were less conscientiously attended. Josephus 
(B. J. VI ix 3) speaks of 2,700,200 Passover pilgrims in Jerusalem in 
the year A.D. 70. Rabbi Hillel extended the obligation to women 
as well as men. The incident (a) illustrates the growth in 
wisdom mentioned in vv. 40 and 52, and also (6) drives home 
the lesson of the true Sonship of Jesus. 

41 And his parents went every year to Jerusalem at the 
feast of the passover. 42 And when he was twelve years old, 
they went up after the custom of the feast ; 43 and when 
they had fulfilled the days, as they were returning, the boy 
Jesus tarried behind in Jerusalem ; and his parents knew it 
not ; 44 but supposing him to be in the company, they 
went a day s journey ; and they sought for him among their 
kinsfolk and acquaintance : 45 and when they found him not, 
they returned to Jerusalem, seeking for him. 46 And it came 
to pass, after three days they found him in the temple, sitting 
in the midst of the 1 doctors, both hearing them, and asking 
them questions : 47 and all that heard him were amazed at 
his understanding and his answers. 48 And when they saw 
him, they were astonished : and his mother said unto him, 
2 Son, why hast thou thus dealt with us ? behold, thy father 
and I sought thee sorrowing. 49 And he said unto them, 
How is it that ye sought me ? wist ye not that I must be 3 in 
my Father s house ? 50 And they understood not the saying 
which he spake unto them. 51 And he went down with them, 
and came to Nazareth ; and he was subject unto them : and 
his mother kept all these 4 sayings in her heart. 

1 Or, teachers 2 Gr. Child. 

3 Or, about my Father s business Gr. in the things of my Father. 

4 Or, things 

42 ST LUKE [ii 41-51 

41. passover: the Spring harvest festival, enriched with the 
memorial of the deliverance from Egypt (Ex xxiii). This would 
probably be the Passover of A. D. 6 ; the year when Archelaus was 
deposed and banished to Vienne, and Quirinius (cf . ii 2) reappeared 
on the scene as Procurator of Judaea. 

43. tarried behind . . . and his parents knew it not. A mark of 
their confidence in Him. 

44. they sought for him among . . . acquaintance. In the caravan 
of Galilean pilgrims now on its way northward. 

46. the doctors : the Rabbis, recognized teachers of the Law s 
among whom would probably be the illustrious Hillel and Shammai 
(Oesterley, Sayings of the Jewish Fathers, S.P.C.K., p. 9 note). 

both hearing them, and asking them questions, &c. He was 
not teaching the Rabbis (as the Apocryphal Gospels would depict 
Him) but learning of them. Wonderful intelligence was shown 
both in the questions He asked of them for His own information, 
and in the replies He made to the queries which they put to Him 
as teachers. Christian Art has always been apt to make Him 
dominate the scene too obviously. The National Gallery contains 
two good examples, in Bernardino Luini (No. 18) and Francisco de 
Herrera the younger (No. 1676). Among our own Pre-Rafaelites, 
there is Holman Hunt s well-known picture. 

49. wist ye not that I must be in my Father s house ? Probably 
the right translation rather than about my father s business. 
Does not this natural and convinced assertion that God (and not 
Joseph) was His father go far towards refuting the Gnostic theory 
lately revived that His Messianic consciousness developed first 
at the Baptism (cf. iii 22) ? No doubt that and the Temptation 
mark further stages in the realization of the Messianic mission ; 
but it is implicit here in the boy of 12 years old. Cf. G. H. Box, 
Virgin Birth, pp. 106-108. 

50. they understood not : evidently the modest confession of 
the Virgin Mother, whose meditations, however, were more than 
half an understanding. The fullness of what it meant for Him to 
be Son of God she would not fully grasp till the Resurrection. 

51. came to Nazareth. The place is nowhere mentioned in 
the O.T. and hence though its identity is as safe as anything in 
Palestinian geography recent negative speculation has run riot 
on the subject. Dr Cheyne (Encycl. Bibl., s.v. Nazareth ) does 
not believe in the existence of such a place, and regards the place- 
name as the invention of early Christians ; Burrage (Nazareth and 
the Beginning of Christianity) thinks the origin of the name is to be 
traced to the Neser of Is xi 1 ; cf . also Burkitt (Proceedings of 
Brit. Academy, 1911-12, p. 391). All these doubts have no 
foundation whatever . . . there are hundreds of Palestinian places 
the names of which do not occur in the O.T., and there is evidence 
that Nazareth was in an ancient Rabbinic list of places of priestly 
residence in Galilee (P. L.). 

II 5 i -III 21 ST LUKE 43 

was subject unto them. Till His thirtieth year (iii 23) working, 
no doubt, at the carpenter s trade, and incidentally, in cottage life, 
accumulating homely illustrations for His future parables. Cf. 
note on xi 7. Conscious of His divine origin, He is content to be 
a model of human dutifulness. 

52 And Jesus advanced in wisdom and Stature, and in 
2 favour with God and men. 

1 Or, age 2 Or, grace 

52. in wisdom and stature, &c. Cf . note on ii 40 : but here is 
added in contrast to John s desert-isolation (i 80) the note of 
gracious fellowship that was, in later days, to attract multitudes 
to His feet. 


This important section of the Gospel forms the link between 
the story of the Lord s Infancy and Childhood and that of His 
actual Ministry upon earth. Here St Luke begins to use his Marcan 
material (cf. Mk i 2 sqq.) supplementing it from Q the docu 
ment used also by St Matthew (cf., e. g., Mat iv 1-11, JLk iv 1-13, 
and contrast the meagreness of Mk i 13) and from sources pecu 
liarly his own (e. g. iii 1, 2, 6, iii 10-14, iii 23 sqq.). 

The section falls into three subsections : 

(a) The Mission of John and Baptism of Jesus (iii 1-23). 

(b) The Lord s earthly genealogy (iii 24-38). 

(c) The Temptation (iv 1-13). 

(a) 1-23 The Mission of John and Baptism of Jesus 

This endeavour to link the events of his story with the move 
ments of the great world is characteristic of our Evangelist. 
Like i 5 and ii 1 it marks a fresh point of departure, and may 
indeed (see note on i 3) represent the original opening of the 
first draft of the Gospel. The synchronisms given are much more 
elaborate than those in the previous chapters, and have, it would 
seem, an artistic relation to the sphere and scope of the Ministry 
to which they introduce us. 

method of dating by synchronisms (cf. the reference to Quirinius 
in ii 2), though unsatisfactory to us, was quite in accordance with 
ancient custom (Ramsay, R.D., p. 275). This is not a mere list of the 
names of contemporary rulers. It begins with the Roman Empire, 
i. e. the civilized world Tiberius Caesar : then follows the Holy 
Land, the immediate sphere of the Lord s Ministry Pontius 
Pilate . . . Abilene, and finally Annas, Caiaphas the Circle of 
Judaic Religion, the hierarchy of the chosen people. 

44 ST LUKE [III i 

He thus by implication draws attention to the political dissolu 
tion into which the Theocracy had fallen, and the dissolution at its 
inmost heart the high priesthood when He arrived on the 
scene who was to establish the true Kingdom of God, and the true 
Priesthood, upon earth (cf. Godet, ad loc). 

Ill Now in the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius 
Caesar, Pontius Pilate being governor of Judaea, and Herod 
being tetrarch of Galilee, and his brother Philip tetrarch of 
the region of Ituraea and Trachonitis, and Lysanias tetrarch 
of Abilene, 2 in the high-priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, 
the word of God came unto John the son of Zacharias in the 

1. Tiberius Ccesar. His fifteenth * year might be A. D. 28-29 
(counting from the time of his sole rule, after Augustus s death) 
or A. D. 26-27 (counting from his joint-rule with Augustus). The 
latter date is now fairly generally accepted. The early spring of 
A. D. 27 may be provisionally received as the time of John s 

reign : ^ye/^ovia. The cognate verb (iTyefioveu ovTos) is used 
immediately below of Pontius Pilate, who, though strictly eViVpoTros 
(procurator) was entitled to be called r/yefjuav because in Judaea 
military command was combined with the civil (Godet). Codex D 
has eVtrpoTrevovTos, here obviously a correction. Archelaus (Mat ii 
22) had been deposed by the Romans in A. D. 6, and Judaea united 
to the Empire. Pilate had recently been appointed Governor, in the 
autumn of A. D. 25. 

Herod (Antipas) and Philip were two sons of Herod the Great 
who, with Archelaus, originally shared their father s dominions. 
To the records of the Court of Antipas, who reigned over Galilee 
and Peraea till A. D. 39 (his death is recorded by Luke in Ac xii) 
St Luke seems to have had special access. See note on viii 3. 

Iturcea . . . Abilene. On two points Luke has been accused of 
inaccuracy here, (a) Ituraea is not mentioned by Josephus when 
he enumerates the dominions of Philip (Ant. XVII viii 1). (6) Abilene 
was governed by a Lysanias some sixty years earlier than this, 
and he was styled not tetrarch but King (Dio Cassius, xlix 32). 

As regards the first criticism (a) it is to be noted that we 
have a composite adjectival phrase the Ituraean-and-Trachonitid 
territory ; and that the two are identified in Eusebius (see D.C.G., 
p. 844), while here they are treated as vaguely contiguous. The 
second criticism is like that which accuses Luke of having muddled 
his references to Theudas and Judas of Galilee in Ac v 36. The 
fact is that inscriptions prove that besides the Lysanias of Dio, 
made king by Antony, and subsequently put to death by him 

Ill 1-6] ST LUKE 45 

(C.I.G. 4521) there was a tetrarch of that name living about 
fifty years later, whose freed man Nymphas left an inscription to 
record his public spirit (Lysanias, D.C.G. 95). Another inscription 
(C.I.G. 4583) tells us that the earlier Lysanias left children : so it 
is plausibly conjectured that Augustus, here, as in other cases, 
restored a son to some part of the inheritance of which Antony 
had deprived the father. Abila where a Roman cemetery still 
remains visible lies to the north of Damascus, between Hermon 
and Antilebanon. 

2. in the high-priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas : literally 
Annas and Caiaphas being High Priest (sing.). Annas, according 
to Jewish ideas, de jure ; Caiaphas by Roman interference de 
facto, since A. D. 18. This mention of Annas is one of the numerous 
points of contact between the third and fourth Gospels (see Introd., 
pp. xxiv, xxx vi). Jn xviii 13 may be a deliberate correction of 
St Luke s phrase here Caiaphas was High Priest ; Annas, whose 
official position the Jews recognized, was his father-in-law. Annas, 
appointed by Quirinius in A. D. 6, had been deposed in A. D. 15, 
but was succeeded by five sons (Jos. Ant. XX x 1) and a son-in- 
law, and seems as ex-high-priest to have held the reins of power 
(Ac iv 6). For the infamies of Annas and his house, see Edersheim, 
Life and Times, i 263. There is a convenient summary of facts 
and opinions on these verses in A. T. Robertson, op. cit., pp. 166-168. 

John the son of Zacharias : the narrative of whose annuncia 
tion and birth has been interwoven with that of the Saviour, his 
cousin after the flesh, was now probably 34, Jesus 33 years old. 
His definite message (pr/p-a) is given succinctly as Repent ye ; for 
the kingdom of heaven is at hand by St Matthew (iii 2) who puts 
the same proclamation }ater into the mouth of Jesus (iv 17). 
John stands as the last of the prophetic series which runs through 
all the O.T. but had been in abeyance now for centuries (cf. 
Ps Ixxiv 9) ; and St Luke here describes the coming of the Word 
of God upon him in language which recalls the inspiration of his 
great predecessors (cf. Jer i 2). 

3 And he came into all the region round about Jordan, 
preaching the baptism of repentance unto remission of sins ; 
4 as it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet, 
The voice of one crying in the wilderness, make ye ready the 
way of the Lord, make his paths straight. 5 Every valley 
shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be brought 
low ; and the crooked shall become straight, and the rough 
ways smooth ; 6 and all flesh shall see the salvation of God. 

3-14. JOHN S BAPTISM AND TEACHING. The picture given omits 
certain outward details (his clothing and diet) given by Matthew 

46 ST LUKE [III 3-9 

and Mark (Mat iii 4, Mk i 6) but is much fuller in its description 
of the preaching (see vv. 11-14). 

4. the baptism of repentance unto remission of sins. There was 
something new in John s baptism ; for Jewish lustration had not 
hitherto been carried to the extent of total immersion, though 
proselytes were so baptized after A. D. 70 and possibly even before 
this (Hastings D.B., s.v. Baptism ). The rite expresses what 
John s prophetic predecessors Ezekiel (xxxvi 26, 27) and Zechariah 
(xiii 1) had predicted. It implied recognition of spiritual unclean- 
ness, and of need of new moral outlook (fj.fTa.voia), and was accom 
panied, according to all three Synoptists, by confession of sins. 
Doubtless it conveyed real grace, not easy to distinguish from that 
conferred shortly afterwards by Jesus at the hands of His disciples 
(cf. Jn iv 1-3). The new birth (cf. Jn iii 5) is the distinctive gift 
of Christian Baptism, the domain of the Holy Ghost (see below, 
v. 16). 

4-6. The quotation is from Is xl 3 sqq. The Deutero- Isaiah 
pictures the restoration of the Theocratic State and the return of 
the exiles preceded by a royal courier calling upon all to prepare 
the roads. This ancient custom supplies in the Gospel a still happier 
use of the metaphor, when it is the King himself who is coming to 
establish the Kingdom. 

6. all flesh. It is typical of St Luke s universalism (see Introd., 
p. xl) that he carries on the quotation beyond the other Synoptists 
to include this phrase. Cf. Ac ii 17. Similarly his gentle spirit 
leads him to note the breaking- off of the quotation in iv 18, 19 
before the proclamation of Vengeance. 

7-9. THE GENERAL MESSAGE, given in Mat iii 6-12 ; in vv. 10-14 
differentiated messages are given, peculiar to St Luke. The theme 
of the general message is Judgement and Repentance. The figures 
in which it is couched vipers, stones are drawn from the desert, 
with fruit-trees added by way of contrast. 

The stern words broods of vipers are by St Matthew put into 
our Lord s mouth, and directed against the Scribes and Pharisees 
(Mat xii 34, xxiii 33). The wrath to come was in Jewish minds 
concentrated on the heathen : the Baptist turns it upon themselves. 
(So Godet.) Cf. Am iii 2, v 18. 

7 He said therefore to the multitudes that went out to be 
baptized of him, Ye offspring of vipers, who warned you to 
flee from the wrath to come ? 8 Bring forth therefore fruits 
worthy of Repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, 
We have Abraham to our father : for I say unto you, that 
God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham. 
9 And even now is the axe also laid unto the root of the trees : 

1 Or, your repentance 

Ill 7-14] ST LUKE 47 

every tree therefore that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn 
down, and cast into the fire. 

7. He said (eAeyev) : he used to say. St Luke is giving a 
summary of John s characteristic preaching. 

8. We have Abraham to our father : St. John actually puts this 
boast into the mouth of our Lord s Jewish opponents (viii 33) 
and records an answer (viii 37, 38) even more stern than this. 

9. the axe : laid at the root of a barren fruit-tree marked out to 
be felled. Cf. our Lord s parable of the Barren Fig-tree (Lk xiii 
6-9) in place of which Matthew and Mark have the narrative of 
the withering (Mat xxi 18, 19, Mk xi 13, 14). 

10-14. THE SPECIAL MESSAGES. St Luke distinguishes three 
classes of penitents, to each of which the Baptist gives special 
counsel: (a) the multitudes, 10-11 ; (6) the tax-gatherers, 12-13; 
(c) men on military service, 14. In each case it is the selfish or 
predatory instinct that is rebuked : (a) Share what you have, 
(6) Do not extort, (c) Do not abuse your power directly or indi 
rectly, and be content with your rations. Selfishness and self- 
assertion are thus proclaimed as the great obstacles to an approach 
to Christ. 

10 And the multitudes asked him, saying, What then must 
we do ? 11 And he answered and said unto them, He that 
hath two coats, let him impart to him that hath none ; and 
he that hath food, let him do likewise. 12 And there came 
also publicans to be baptized, and they said unto him, 
2 Master, what must we do ? 13 And he said unto them, 
Extort no more than that which is appointed you. 14 And 
3 soldiers also asked him, saying, And we, what must we do ? 
And he said unto them, Do violence to no man, neither 4 exact 
anything wrongfully ; and be content with your wages. 

1 See marginal note on Mat v 46. 2 Or, Teacher 

3 Gr. soldiers on service. 4 Or, accuse any one 

10. What then must we do ? The question is the same as that 
put to St Peter and his colleagues in Ac ii 37. Peter s answer is 
more definite because, in the interval, the Kingdom of God had 
come. (So Godet.) 

14. Do violence to no man, &c. The armed man (as the late 
war has shown) is in all ages subject to temptation to violence and 
outrage from which the civilian is normally immune. Sack and 
pillage with nameless attendant horrors have been in our generation 
proclaimed by militarism as justifiable in war. John urges dis 
cipline, (a) external, towards the populations where they are 

48 ST LUKE [III 15-20 

stationed, (6) internal contentment as against the spirit of unrest 
and mutiny. 

Verse 15, describing the atmosphere of expectancy, is peculiar to 
St Luke, and forms one of his points of contact with the fourth 
Gospel (cf. Jn i 19 sqq.). See further, Introd., pp. xxiv, xxxvi, xliv. 

15 And as the people were in expectation, and all men 
reasoned in their hearts concerning John, whether haply he 
were the Christ ; 16 John answered, saying unto them all, 
I indeed baptize you with water ; but there cometh he that 
is mightier than I, the latchet of whose shoes I am not 
1 worthy to unloose : he shall baptize you 2 with the Holy 
Ghost and with fire : 17 whose fan is in his hand, throughly 
to cleanse his threshing-floor, and to gather the wheat into 
his garner ; but the chaff he will burn up with unquenchable 

1 Gr. sufficient. " Or, in 

16. the latchet of whose shoes, &c. The duty of the humblest 
sort of slave. 

with the Holy Ghost and with fire. The disciples at Pentecost 
were baptized with the Holy Ghost and with fire (Ac ii 3, 4). 
The Hebraistic phrase amounts to a hendiadys with the fire 
of the Holy Ghost. Fire is a more intense purifier even than 
water, and has (v. 17) unquenchable power to burn up the evil. 
See further v. 22. 

17. whose fan, the. For this sifting of souls cf . the Parable of 
the Tares (Mat xiii 24-30). Here again, as in v. 7, the line of 
demarcation is not that of popular Jewish tradition between Jew 
and Gentile, but between saved and lost Jews. 

18-20. IMPRISONMENT or JOHN. In common with the fourth 
Evangelist (Jn iii 24) St Luke mentions the imprisonment by 
anticipation. Matthew (xiv 3) and Mark (vi 17, 18) record it in its 
chronological sequence (cf. notes on w. 2, 15). 

18 With many other exhortations therefore preached he 
x good tidings unto the people ; 19 but Herod the tetrarch, 
being reproved by him for Herodias his brother s wife, and 
for all the evil things which Herod had done, 20 added yet 
this above all, that he shut up John in prison. 

1 Or, the gospel 

21, 22. BAPTISM OF JESUS. By this Christian Baptism is 
linked with that of John ; for here, in the climax of John s bap- 

Ill 21 -23] ST LUKE 49 

tismal acts are (a) the sanctifying of water to the mystical washing 
away of sin, and (6) the Special Presence of the Holy Ghost (cf. 
Ac ii 38). It is at once a solemn investiture of Jesus for His 
Ministry, and of John for his office of forerunner (Papini, Life of 
Christ, p. 70). 

21 Now it came to pass, when all the people were baptized, 
that, Jesus also having been baptized, and praying, the 
heaven was opened, 22 and the Holy Ghost descended in a 
bodily form, as a dove, upon him, and a voice came out of 
heaven, Thou art my beloved Son ; in thee I am well pleased. 

22. in a bodily form : phrase peculiar to St Luke implying, 
perhaps, what St John asserts (i 32), that the Baptist saw the vision. 
From St Mark (i 10) we might have inferred that it was seen by 
Christ alone. 

The famous D MS (with some Lat. witnesses, and Justin and other 
Fathers) have Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten Thee, 
which gives a definite connexion (otherwise wanting) with v. 23, 
this day contrasting with thirty years and my Son with being 
the son (as was supposed) of Joseph (Blass, Philol. Gosp., E.T. 
pp. 167-169). 

On the implications as to our Lord s Divinity, see A. T. Robert 
son, op. cit., pp. 153-165, An Historian s Idea of the Deity of 

The most famous accessible picture of the Baptism is that of 
Piero della Francesca in the National Gallery (No. 665). In it the 
dove is unmistakable, yet assimilated to the white clouds in the 
sky. Jameson, Hist, of 0. L., vol. i, pp. 294-297 ; P.L. W., p. 54. 

23 And Jesus himself, when he began to teach, was about 
thirty years of age, being the son (as was supposed) of Joseph, 
the son of Heli, 

23. when he began. F. Blass (Philol. Gosp., E.T. p. 169) would 
read epxoV ej/0? for apxop.wo<; when He came [to baptism]. He has 
only one minuscule codex to support him, but Clem. Alex, read 
the text so. Blass makes the phrase as was supposed cover 
two clauses, thus : Jesus was, when He came to be baptised, 
about 30 years old, as was supposed, and the son of Joseph. 

about thirty years. St Luke s general aim at exactness makes 
it likely that he had some reason for vagueness here. We shall not 
be wrong, e.g., if we make the age 28 or 32. Cf. Ramsay, Recent 
Discovery, p. 295. 

as was supposed. The Evangelist (see note on i 27), like St 
Matthew, accepts at once the Virgin Birth and the Davidic 

50 ST LUKE [in 24-30 

(b) 24-38 The Earthly Genealogy of Jesus (cf. Mat i 1-17) 

The Hebrew fondness for genealogy is evidenced by the 
character of such books as Chronicles and Jubilees. There is a 
Rabbinic saying, " God lets His Shekhina dwell only in families 
that can prove their pedigrees " (P. L.). 

It is characteristic that while the Judaic first Evangelist traces 
the genealogy down from Abraham, the universalist St Luke 
follows it up and back to the first Man. 

Endless discussion has arisen out of the similarities and differ 
ences between this list and that given in Mat i 1-16 (a difference 
which is entirely eliminated in the great Western Codex D, where 
Luke s names are identical with Matthew s). Between Abraham 
and David they tally, name for name ; between David and Joseph 
they coincide in Shealtiel and Zerubbabel (Mat i 12, Lk iii 27), 
but all the other names are different. The difference of the names 
from Zerubbabel to Joseph is accounted for if we regard Luke s 
genealogy as being, not that of Joseph (as Matthew), but Mary s 
(cf. A. T. Robertson, op. cit., p. 127) ; relying on the Western 
reading in ii 4 which makes her, as well as her betrothed, of the 
house and lineage of David, backed by the general atmosphere of 
the first two chapters, which seem to express Mary s point of view, 
and may be ultimately derived from her. 

Westcott, however, has pointed out (Introd. Stud. Gosp., 
7th edn., p. 316 note) that until the sixteenth century both genealo 
gies were generally supposed to be Joseph s, Matthew s giving the 
legal and Royal descent, Luke s the actual, natural descent 
from David (cf. note on v. 27). 

Early Christian speculation attributed to Mary a descent from 
Levi; cf. EphraemSyr. (ArmenianV.),p. 17; Test, xii Pair. ( Simeon, 
Levi, Judah ). This was also a tenet of the Manichaeans ; cf . Aug. 
Contr. Faust, xxiii 9 (P. L.). 

24 The son of Matthat, the son of Levi, the son of Melchi, 
the son of Jannai, the son of Joseph, 25 the son of Mattathias, 
the son of Amos, the son of Nahum, the son of Esli, the son of 
Naggai, 26 the son of Maath, the son of Mattathias, the son 
of Semein, the son of Josech, the son of Joda, 27 the son of 
Joanan, the son of Rhesa, the son of Zerubbabel, the son 
of 1 Shealtiel, the son of Neri, 28 the son of Melchi, the son of 
Addi, the son of Cosam, the son of Elmadam, the son of Er, 
29 the son of Jesus, the son of Eliezer, the son of Jorim, the 
son of Matthat, the son of Levi, 30 the son of Symeon, the 
son of Judas, the son of Joseph, the son of Jonam, the son of 

1 Gr. Salathiel. 

m 3 i-38] ST LUKE 51 

Eliakim, 31 the son of Melea, the son of Menna, the son of 
Mattatha, the son of Nathan, the son of David, 32 the son of 
Jesse, the son of Obed, the son of Boaz, the son of 1 Salmon, 
the son of Nahshon, 33 the son of Amminadab, 2 the son of 
3 Arni, the son of Hezron, the son of Perez, the son of Judah, 
34 the son of Jacob, the son of Isaac, the son of Abraham, the 
son of Terah, the son of Nahor, 35 the son of Serug, the son 
of Reu, the son of Peleg, the son of Eber, the son of Shelah, 
36 the son of Cainan, the son of Arphaxad, the son of Shem, 
the sow of Noah, the son of Lamech, 37 the son of Methuselah, 
the son of Enoch, the son of Jared, the son of Mahalaleel, the 
sow of Cainan, 38 the son of Enos, the son of Seth, the son of 
Adam, the son of God. 

1 Some ancient authorities write Sala. 

2 Many ancient authorities insert the son of Admin : and one writes Admin 
for Amminadab. 3 Some ancient authorities write Aram. 

27. the son of Zerubbabel, the son o/ Shealtiel, the son o/ 
The coincidence of Matthew and Luke in the two names is best 
explained by the fact that Jeconiah (Coniah) whom Matthew 
(i 12) makes father of Shealtiel was actually childless (Jer xxii 
28 sqq.) ; and that Matthew carries the line down the royal suc 
cession, making Shealtiel son because heir, while Luke carries it 
up the natural birth-genealogy through Neri, Shealtiel s actual 
father, to Nathan (o. 31) son of David, Solomon s elder half- 
brother (cf. 2 Sam v 14). 

36. the son of Cainan. This name is omitted by D, and Blass 
Philol. Gosp., p. 173) accepts its reading here though he regards 
the general identity with Matthew s names (see note on v 23) 
as a clear case of assimilation. In omitting Cainan, D agrees 
with the Hebrew text against the LXX. But is it not clear that 
St Luke habitually used the Septuagint ? 

38. the son of God. In this daring statement of his own, 
completing the dry genealogical series before him, Luke claims 
for man the privilege accorded in Gen i 26, 27. Man, as such, is 
God s child, made in His image, after His likeness ; and thus Luke, 
like his old chief St Paul (Rom v 12-19), links the Lord Jesus 
universally to the human race. But he has already proclaimed 
Him, by the mouth of Gabriel, Son of God in a unique sense 

(c) IV 1-13 The Temptation 

The narrative, summarized in a single verse in Mark (who adds 
his own touch, he was with the wild beasts, i 13) is common to 


52 ST LUKE [IV 1-13 

the first and third Evangelists, and hence is usually assigned to 
Q (cf. Hawkins, Oxf. Stud., p. 187 ; Streeter, Hibbert Journal, Oct. 
1921. Streeter now thinks the whole of iii 1 iv 30 is Q plus Lk 
and independent of Mk ; but contra, W. C. Allen, ib., p. 273). 
It is strange, however, that Mark should mention the Temptation 
without any further specification, unless in his earlier verses he 
is deliberately summarizing from a fuller knowledge (so Streeter, 
Oxf. Stud., pp. 168, 169). The main difference between the records of 
Matthew and Luke lies in the variation of the order of the last 
two temptations (Mat iv 5-7 the Temple, iv 8-10 the Mountain ; 
Lk iv 5-8 the Mountain, iv 9-19 the Temple). This inversion of 
the order of common material is observable again in Mat xii 41, 
42 = Lk xi 32, 31, where the men of Nineveh and the Queen of 
the South change places. (Cf. Sanday, Oxf. Stud., p. 8.) For a 
similar phenomenon see on xxiv 10. 

In the latter case there is no literary or doctrinal advantage 
in either order ; and it is possible that the variation here may be 
an accident, due to the difficulty of continually turning up places 
in a roll of MS. There is, however, a point which may help us 
to conjecture which Evangelist reproduces the order of the common 

Canon Streeter (Oxf. Stud., p. 153) remarks that the 
crescendo of allurements in St Matthew, ending up with the 
kingdoms of the earth and the glory of them, is the more effective 
dramatically ; he claims that St Luke was too much of an artist 
to spoil such an effect if he had it before him, and infers that there 
fore St Matthew must have changed the order which St Luke 
retains. There is, however, a less obvious but real sense in which 
the soul s intimate relation to God, touched in v. 9 sqq., is more 
sublime than even world- wide dominion (v. 5 sqq.). St Luke may 
have the credit of this. Cf. Westcott, Introd. to Study, &c., ch vi, 
p. 323 [7th edn.]. In Matthew the order of the temptations is (1) 
Sense, (2) God, (3) Man; in Luke (1) Sense, (2) Man, (3) God; 
see, for another suggestion, the note below on vv. 9-12. 

Whatever may have been the documentary source from which 
the two Evangelists derived their narrative, the story must have 
come originally from the lips of the Lord Himself. We may assume 
that He put into symbolic form the record of an inner moral and 
psychological experience the three typical temptations repre 
senting in principle the reality of the struggle of His|human Spirit 
in preparing to face the responsibility and the trials of the Ministry 
and Passion and perfecting Him in sympathy with the tempted 
(Heb ii 18), and in some sense also a practical guide on the subject 
of temptation for His disciples. We note that it follows His 
Baptism temptation to use amiss a new consciousness of power 
and precedes His Ministry, illustrating its future temptations and 
showing the power of the human spirit to conquer beforehand. 

Three points which come out in the narrative may be emphasized. 

lVi-i 3 ] ST LUKE 53 

(a) The temptations are suited to a sinless nature. The objects 
proposed were in themselves desirable for an innocent person 
(Adeney, ad loc.) ; it was the suggested means of achieving them 
that were wrong. 

(6) The temptations were real. There is no hint of anything 
less than a deadly struggle a struggle the more exacting because 
carried on to the end, and not broken off by giving way just when 
the strain became greatest. He would not (if He could) bring His 
Divinity to the succour of His humanity in any exclusive way, 
and thus, in the words of the writer to the Hebrews (whose language, 
of all N.T. writers, most nearly approximates to that of St Luke), 
He qualified to be our High Priest ... in all points tempted like 
as we are, yet without sin (Heb iv 15 ; cf. v 7, vii 26). 

(c) The original utterance and the subsequent transmission of 
this narrative would have been unmeaning, had not those con 
cerned believed in the miraculous powers of Christ (cf. Oxf. Stud., 
p. 129). 

On the moral and spiritual interpretation of this celebrated 
passage volumes have been written, and its significance will, 
surely, never be exhausted. Canon Streeter (Oxf. Stud., p. 214) 
draws attention to the original apologetic purpose of the narra 
tive as it appeared in the source (Q) from which the first and 
third Evangelists draw it. It met the problem of His poverty : 
If He was Messiah, why had He not bread to eat ? It met 
the failure to fulfil Jewish national expectations : If He was 
Messiah, why did He not rule all the kingdoms of the world, as 
Caesar on the throne of David ? It met also the problem of 
failure to convince the Jewish People as a whole : If He was 
Messiah, why did not all Jerusalem see Him borne up by angels as 
He leaped from the Temple pinnacle ? 

Such a use of it would harmonize with what we may regard as 
its original significance to Himself : a realization and a loyal 
acceptance of the necessary limitations involved in the redemptive 
mission of the Incarnation. He resolves once for all (a) never to 
use His Divine powers for self-gratification, or for the fulfilment 
of His merely human needs ; (6) never to compass swiftly a desirable 
end by disloyal and unworthy means ; (c) never to presume on 
Divine aid for any spectacular exhibitions of His paramount 
position and authority. 

Among useful books for further reference may be recommended 
A. Morris Stewart, The Temptation of Jesus, London 1903. 
H. J. C. Knight, The Temptation of Our Lord, Longmans 1907. 
G. A. Cobbold, Tempted Like as We are, London 1900. 
Archbishop Trench, Studies in the Gospels, London 1867. 

IV And Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the 
Jordan, and was led x by the Spirit in the wilderness 2 during 

1 Or, in 

54 ST LUKE [IVi- 4 

forty days, being tempted of the devil. And he did eat nothing 
in those days : and when they were completed, he hungered. 

1. led by the Spirit : (imperfect was being led led about 
from day to day ) ; rather different from St Mark s straightway 
the Spirit driveth him forth into. . . . A new access of the Spirit, 
the endowment of His Baptism, was upon Him during these forty 

the wilderness : the wild uplands north of Jerusalem. 

2. forty days. Cf. Deut ix 9, 1 Kgs xix 8. The origin of the 
Church s Lenten observance. 

tempted of the devil. Here again (as in Mark) the tense of the 
verb points to a continuous tempting throughout the forty days. 
From St Matthew we might have thought that the Temptation was 
preceded by a forty days fast (and both Luke and Matthew agree 
that the feeling of hunger came after the long fast). Visible or 
invisible, we find Satan pictured as actually present and in hand- 
to-hand conflict with the Son of Man. 

3. 4. FIRST TEMPTATION OF SENSE. The tempter chooses 
the moment of extreme exhaustion and depression to make this 

3 And the devil said unto him, If thou art the Son of God, 
command this stone that it become ^read. 4 And Jesus 
answered unto him, It is written, Man shall not live by bread 

1 Or, o loaf 

3. // thou art God s Son, as proclaimed at thy Baptism (iii 22). 
Jesus was pledged to be true man, to behave and suffer as man, as 
the author of the Hebrews clearly sees (iv 15 sqq., v 1-10, &c.). 
Could He be induced at the outset even to escape this deadly 
exhaustion to draw upon the superhuman He felt in Him ? The 
Temptation is (a) to convince the tempter of His divine Sonship, 
(6) to feel the need of such conviction Himself, and (c) to satisfy 
His natural craving for food and preserve Himself for future use 

command this stone : the eyes fixed, we may suppose, on a 
particular piece of limestone, like a loaf in shape and size. In 
Tintoretto s picture (Scuola di S. Kocco, Venice) Satan is in the act 
of handing up a stone to our Lord. For other representations of 
the Temptation in Art, see Jameson, Hist . of 0. L., vol. i, pp. 310-314. 

4. It is written. The three answers are drawn not merely from 
the Old Testament, but all from the same Book of Deuteronomy, 
the book which is in spirit far the most evangelical of the Penta 
teuch. This Book, which records so touchingly (Deut viii) God s 
fatherly care of His People in the wilderness, was apparently chosen 
by our Lord as His subject for meditation during those momentous 

IV 5-io] ST LUKE 55 

days, while He stood as it were on the verge of the Promised Land 
of His earthly ministry. 

Man shall not live (Deut viii 3). God s Spirit had led Him 
hitherto, and He must not cut across the effects of that leading. 

tion to adopt unhallowed means to acknowledged ends. 

5 And he led him up, and shewed him all the kingdoms of 
Hhe world in a moment of time. 6 And the devil said unto 
him, To thee will I give all this authority, and the glory of 
them : for it hath been delivered unto me ; and to whom 
soever I will I give it. 7 If thou therefore wilt worship before 
me, it shall all be thine. 8 And Jesus answered and said unto 
him, It is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, 
and him only shalt thou serve. 

1 Gr. the inhabited earth. 

5. led him up : in thought and imagination. Physically such 
a view would be impossible, even from snowy Hermon or Mount 
Everest ! It is a miraculous flash of supernatural vision. This 
second temptation according to St Luke is the third according to 
St Matthew. See preliminary note, p. 52. 

6. it hath been delivered unto me. Is this one of the devil s lies ? 
The claim, with its magnificent insolence, is implicit only in 
Matthew. It finds some apparent support in such passages as 
1 Jn v 19. But certainly no Messianic sceptre was at Satan s 
disposal. Throughout His ministry our Lord steadfastly resisted 
this recurrent temptation in refusing the role of a Nationalist leader 
(cf . Jn vi 15) and preferring that of misunderstanding, hostility, and 
the Cross. It was the temptation under which, as Dr Adeney 
observes (ad loc.), Mohammed fell. 

Stewart (op. cit., p. 114) pictures the transportation as actually 
accomplished an excursion into the Fourth Dimension a 
Temptation and a Challenge to our Lord to anticipate the powers 
of His post-resurrection body. 

Mr Levertoff suggests that Luke rightly places this last, because 
it represents the Fiend s attempt, when other assaults have failed, 
to induce Him to fall down and be killed. 

9 And he led him to Jerusalem, and set him on the 
pinnacle of the temple, and said unto him, If thou art the 
Son of God, cast thyself down from hence : 

10 For it is written, 

He shall give his angels charge concerning thee, to 
guard thee : 

1 Gr. wing. 

56 ST LUKE [IV 11-14 

11 And, 

On their hands they shall bear thee up, 

Lest haply thou dash thy foot against a stone. 

12 And Jesus answering said unto him, It is said, Thou 
shalt not tempt the Lord thy God. 

10. The devil himself quotes Scripture. He misquotes 
Ps xci 11-13, omitting the important phrase, in all thy ways. This 
self-chosen way would not have been His way at all. 

12. Thou shalt not tempt : cf. Deut vi 16. Jesus in His reply 
refuses to prostitute His Godhead to a use which is merely 
theatrical (Morris Stewart). 

13 And when the devil had completed every temptation, 
he departed from him J for a season. 

1 Or, until 

13. It is remarkable that the notice of angelic ministrations 
which Matthew, and even Mark in his very brief narrative, records, 
has no place here. St Luke with his fondness for angels would 
hardly have deliberately excised it. The natural inference is that 
it was not in Q, the source common to Matthew and Luke, and that 
Luke did not here use the Marcan source (cf . Streeter, Oxford Studies, 
p. 187). 


This section of the Gospel is, in general, common to all three 
Synoptists ; and at one point, the Feeding of the Five Thousand 
(Lk ix 12 sqq.), to all four Evangelists. The corresponding narra 
tive in St Mark and St Matthew is followed immediately by that 
of the Passion. 

St Luke s treatment of this record, as found in his Marcan 
document, is characteristic. He follows the outline, as a rule very 
closely, and often repeats word for word ; though here and there 
(especially where medical terminology is called for) he alters the 
phraseology, while retaining the substance. 

But at two points (chs vii and ix) he deviates notably. In ch. vii 
he inserts two narratives, that of the Widow s Son at Nain (vii 11-17) 
and that of the Penitent Woman in the Pharisee s house (vii 36-50), 
both peculiar to his Gospel, and eminently characteristic of the 
Women s Evangelist. For the explanation of these additions we 
need look no further than St Luke s own tastes. 

In ch ix 17, 18 he puts the story of St Peter s Confession imme 
diately after the Feeding of the Five Thousand ; thus omitting the 
whole of a well-marked section Mk vi 45 viii 26, containing the 

IV i 4 -lX 5 o] ST LUKE 57 

Walking on the Sea and its sequel (Mk vi 45-56), the Question of 
Purifications (Mk vii 1-23), the Syrophoenician Woman (Mk vii 24- 
30), the Deaf Man with an Impediment in his Speech (Mk vii 31-37), 
the Feeding of the Four Thousand and its sequel (Mk viii 1-21), and 
the Gradual Cure of the Blind Man at Bethsaida (Mk viii 22-26). 
The explanation for these omissions may be : 

(a) That this section was not in the original Mark which St Luke 
used as source. (Against this we must set the fact that St Matthew 
does not omit it.) 

(6) That the reason was a mechanical one this section of the 
MS roll escaped the notice of a compiler who had so many authori 
ties to draw from at the same time. (This is the kind of explanation 
emphasized again and again by Dr Sanday.) 

(c) That St Luke had the passage before him, and deliberately 
omitted it. It is not difficult to conjecture reasons in the case of 
some of the episodes, e. g. : 

The Question of Purification as being of no interest to a Gentile 

The Syrophoenician Woman because of the harsh words applied 
to Gentiles (Mk vii 27). 

The Feeding of the Four Thousand because it simply repeats 
the lesson of the Five Thousand. 

The omission of the two healings of the Deaf and the Blind are, 
at first sight, more difficult to account for : but it has been suggested 
that St Luke seems averse from recording miracles in which material 
means were used. But specific reasons are not of so great importance 
if we recognize, with Canon Streeter (Hibbert Journal, Oct. 1921, 
p. 108), that Mark was to Luke a secondary source, and not (as to 
Matthew) primary. 

St Luke s record of this early ministry in the North covers an 
indeterminable period of time, roughly perhaps, from the spring 
of A. D. 27 to early in A. D. 28, nearly a year. 1 

(The events of Jn i v would come in between iv 13 and iv 14.) 

In its ninth chapter it brings us to the climax, or central point, 
of the earthly mission, whether we assign that place to the Miracle 
of the Five Thousand, Lk ix 10-17 (Mat xiv 13-21, Mk vi 32-44, 
Jn vi 1-13), marked by all four Evangelists as the climax of His 
superficial influence on the multitudes ; or to St Peter s Confession, 
Lk ix 18-20 (Mat xvi 13-16, Mk viii 27-29) ; or, with Edersheim 
(L. & T., Book iii), to the Transfiguration, Lk ix 28-36 (Mat xvii 
1-8, Mk ix 2-8) : these latter representing the climax, subjectively 
and objectively, to the inner circle, as the first to the multitudes. 

Among the many important incidents recorded in this section 
is the appointment of the Twelve, followed, as in the first Gospel, 
by a great Sermon. One of the most interesting studies in the 

1 We have late spring (ripe barley or wheat) indicated in vi 1 (see also note 
ad loc.), while the miracle of the 5,000 (ix 12-17) is noted by Mark as in time of 
green grass (Mk vi 39), i. e. early spring of the next year (cf. Jn vi 4). 

58 ST LUKE [IV i 4 -ix S o 

Synoptic question is the comparison and contrast of St Luke s 
Sermon on the level place (vi 17, vi 20-49) with St Matthew s 
Sermon on the Mount (Mat v 1 sqq.). Interesting suggestions on 
this point may be found in Oxford Studies, especially pp. 147-152, 
189 note, and 326-328. 

The section may be divided into four parts : 

(1) Ministry to the Call of the first disciples, iv 14 v 11. 

(2) Call of the first disciples to appointment of the Twelve and 
Great Sermon, v 12 vi 49. 

(3) From Great Sermon to the first mission of Twelve, vii 1 
viii 56. 

(4) Mission of Twelve to the beginning of Luke s Special Con 
tribution, ix 1-50. 

(1) First Period of Galilean Ministry 

(a) iv 14, 15. Introduction. 

(6) iv 16-30. The Sermon at Nazareth. 

(c) iv 31-44. A day of miracles at Capernaum. 

(2) Second Period of Galilean Ministry 

(a) v 1-11. Call of first disciples on the Lake. 
(6) v 12-16. Leper healed. 

(c) v 17-26. Paralysed man. 

(d) v 27-39. Call of Levi, the feast and the dispute on fasting. 

(e) vi 1-11. Two disputes about Sabbath. 
(/) vi 12-16. Nomination of the Twelve. 

(g) vi 17-49. The Sermon on the level place. 

(3) Third Period of Galilean Ministry 

(a) vii 1-10. Centurion s Servant at Capernaum. 
(6) vii 11-17. Widow s Son at Nain. 

(c) vii 18-35. Message of John and subsequent discourse. 

(d) vii 36-50. The Pharisee and the Penitent Woman. 

(e) viii 1-3. The Ministering Women. 

(/) viii 4-18. Teaching by Parables : the Sower, the Lamp. 
(g) viii 19-21. Mother and Brethren. 
(h) viii 22-39. Storm on the Lake, Gerasene demoniac. 
(i) viii 40-56. A miracle within a miracle. 

(4) Fourth Period of Galilean Ministry 
(a) ix 1-6. Mission of the Twelve. 

(6) ix 7-9. Herod s perplexity. 

(c) ix 10-17. Return of the Twelve and feeding of 5,000. 

(d) ix 18-27. St Peter s great confession. 

(e) ix 28-36. Transfiguration. 
(/) ix 37-43. The Lunatic Boy. 

(g) ix 44-50. Prediction of the Passion : competition within 
and without the Twelve. 

IT i4-i7] ST LUKE 59 

14-44 First Period of Galilean Ministry : Nazareth and 


(a) 14, 15 Introductory link 

14 And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into 
Galilee : and a fame went out concerning him through all the 
region round about. 15 And he taught in their synagogues, 
being glorified of all. 

Returned seems to take up the interrupted return of iv 1. If 
so this reference, followed by Luke s unique account of the Sermon 
at Nazareth, may possibly refer to the visit of Jn i 43 ii 12, which, 
according to the fourth Evangelist, preceded that Judaean ministry 
which the Synoptists ignore (Jn ii 13 sqq.), including the Passover 
of A. D. 27. The marked reference to the power of the Spirit, 
though in any case characteristic of Luke (cf. note on i 35), seems 
to carry on the thought of iv 2. The first Galilean ministry 
mentioned by Matthew and Mark (cf. Mk i 14) is after the 
Baptist s imprisonment, and the departure north is noted by John 
as due to the jealousy and suspicion of the Pharisees (iv 1 sqq.). 
Between it and the temptation had intervened a first journey to 
Galilee (possibly identical with this of St Luke), a return to 
Jerusalem (cleansing of Temple and interview with Nicodemus) and 
the imprisonment of the Baptist. If, however, Luke here refers 
to the visit of Jn i 43, he passes insensibly to the second visit of 
Mat iv 12 sqq., Mk i 14 sqq. at v. 31 of this chapter. Perhaps the 
hint of Capernaum in v. 23 (see note) may be evidence that St Luke 
has misplaced the ensuing narrative (cf. Mk vi 1 sqq.). Or it may 
refer to what is recorded in Jn ii and iv 45-54. 

(6) 16-30 The First Sermon at Nazareth 

This vivid description of the latter part of a Synagogue service 
on a Sabbath is quite in harmony with what we find in Rabbinical 
literature (P. Levertoff). For the officials and arrangements 
connected with the Synagogue, see Edersheim, L. and T. i 438-439. 

A companion picture to the scene is found in St Luke s account 
of St Paul s first sermon in a Synagogue, at Antioch in Pisidia (Ac xiii 
16 sqq.). 

16 And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought 
up : and he entered, as his custom was, into the synagogue 
on the sabbath day, and stood up to read. 17 And there was 
delivered unto him Hhe book of the prophet Isaiah. And he 
opened the 2 book, and found the place where it was written, 

1 Or, a roll 2 Or, roll 

60 ST LUKE [IV 18-30 

18 The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, 

1 Because he anointed me to preach 2 good tidings to the 
poor : 

He hath sent me to proclaim release to the captives, 
And recovering of sight to the blind, 
To set at liberty them that are bruised, 

19 To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord. 

20 And he closed the 3 book, and gave it back to the 
attendant, and sat down : and the eyes of all in the synagogue 
were fastened on him. 21 And he began to say unto them, To 
day hath this scripture been fulfilled in your ears. 22 And all 
bare him witness, and wondered at the words of grace which 
proceeded out of his mouth : and they said, Is not this Joseph s 
son ? 23 And he said unto them, Doubtless ye will say unto me 
this parable, Physician, heal thyself : whatsoever we have heard 
done at Capernaum, do also here in thine own country. 24 And 
he said, Verily I say unto you, No prophet is acceptable in his 
own country. 25 But of a truth I say unto you, There were 
many widows in Israel in the days of Elijah, when the heaven 
was shut up three years and six months, when there came 
a great famine over all the land ; 26 and unto none of them 
was Elijah sent, but only to 4 Zarephath, in the land of Sidon, 
unto a woman that was a widow. 27 And there were many 
lepers in Israel in the time of Elisha the prophet ; and none 
of them was cleansed, but only Naaman the Syrian. 28 And 
they were all rilled with wrath in the synagogue, as they heard 
these things ; 29 and they rose up, and cast him forth out of 
the city, and led him unto the brow of the hill whereon their 
city was built, that they might throw him down headlong. 
30 But he passing through the midst of them went his way. 

1 Or, Wherefore 2 Or, the gospel 3 Or, roll 4 Gr. Sarepta. 

16. synagogue. Jesus comes back to his native place from the 
unnamed Judaean ministry with a reputation as a teacher (v. 14). 
The synagogues, places of non-sacrificial worship which originated 
in the Babylonian captivity, were under the control of local elders, 
under an dpxio-waywyos (Ac xiii 15). These elders had power to 
invite any competent person to read the Scriptures, and such 
invitation was an honour. Our Lord would take His place in the 
front row, near the lectern. He stood up to read, as was the custom. 
Doubtless a lesson from the Law had been already read. His turn 

IV i 7 -23] ST LUKE 61 

came with that from the Prophets. According to the Syr-Sin. 
He stood up after the attendant had handed Him the book, thus 
asking Him to read (P. L.). 

17. found the place : in the roll delivered to Him ; i.e. either 
a fixed lesson for the day, or one of His own choosing. Is Ixi 1, 2 
describes (a) an ideal or jubilee year, and, in so doing (b) the release 
from Babylonian Exile, &c., the Day of the Lord, or Messiah s 
coming (cf. v. 21). 

18, 19. It is noticeable that in His reading He stops short of 
the severe message that immediately followed, viz. the day of 
vengeance of our God (cf. note on iii 4-6). 

The Spirit of the Lord : at His Baptism (iii 22) came as seal of His 
Messiahship ( hath anointed me ). 

good tidings to the poor : cf. vii 22, and the parallels in Matthew, 
where the preaching of good tidings to the poor is the climax of 
evidences of Messiahship even beyond the raising of the dead. 

captives : means lit. prisoners of war, and is used here only in 
N.T. In its original context it referred doubtless (a) to slaves 
manumitted in Jubilee Year, and (b) to the Babylonian Captivity : 
in the mouth of Christ to the bondage of sin or the shackles of 
Pharisaism, or both. The other phrases readily lend themselves 
to spiritual symbolizing. 

20. closed : having rolled up the parchment (-n-rv^as) he 
handed it back to the attendant Chazzan from whom He had 
received it. 

eyes . . . were fastened. One of the most vivid pictures we have, 
even from St Luke s inspired brush. 

22. bare witness : to the truth of the high report that had pre 
ceded Him. 

Joseph s son. Cf. iii 23. In ii 49 St Luke has recorded words 
which dispose of this misconception. He has no need to refute it 
explicitly here. 

Matthew and Mark record a visit to His own country, though 
placed later in the ministry (Mark, after raising of Jairus s daughter, 
Matthew later still), and enlarge upon the astonished questioning 
of His fellow kinsmen. But the following as well as the preceding 
matter is peculiar to the third Gospel. The corresponding question 
is in Mat xiii 55, Is not this the carpenter s son ? , in Mk vi 3, Is 
not this the carpenter, the son of Mary ? 

Luke alone with John (i 45) preserves the popular contemporary 
description of Him as Son of Joseph. 

Doubtless ye will say unto me. Latham, Pastor Pastorum, pp. 179 
sqq., points out that this seems to imply a still earlier rejection at 
Nazareth, making this the second visit. A third (Mat xiii 53, 
Mk vi 1) is distinguished from this by the fact that disciples were 

23. Physician, heal thyself : a proverb which the beloved 
Physician surely records with a smile on his lips. 

62 ST LUKE [IV 23-32 

whatsoever we have heard done at Capernaum. To what can this 
refer ? St Luke s first narrative of works at Capernaum follows, 
iv 31-44. A common theory is that he has misplaced the two 
events, which should be in the Marcan order (Capernaum, Mk i 21-39 
certainly parallel to Lk iv 31-44 Nazareth, Mk vi 1-6 not 
certainly parallel to Lk iv 23 sqq.), and has forgotten to remove 
this inconsistent reference. But is this like St Luke ? Another 
interpretation, which consorts with his repeated unconscious 
approaches to the chronology of the fourth Gospel (see Introd., 
p. xliv and note on iii 15-17) is that adopted by Edersheim (L. and T. 
i 423 and 457). According to this view the things heard done at 
Capernaum will belong to the visit described in Jn iv 45-54 after 
the second visit to Cana including the healing of the Nobleman s 
Son : and the visit to Nazareth described Mat xiii 54-58 and 
Mk vi 1-6 will be later than St Luke s. 

24-27. Universalist inferences from the lives of Elijah (1 Kgs xvii 
9-16) and Elisha (2 Kgs v). The demand of the Nazarenes typified 
the fatal religious self-centredness of the Hebrew people to which 
the stories of Elijah and Elisha, and that of Jonah, form striking 
protests. Here at the outset of the ministry, in St Luke s record, 
the more generous universalist note is struck (cf. Introd., p. xl), 
and rouses bitter resentment (general, not a hostile party, cf. all, 
vv.20, 28). 

26. a woman that was a widow. This emphasis is again 
characteristic of the Gospel of Womanhood (cf. i 36, vii 11-17, 
37 sqq., viii 1-3, &c.), and the Gospel which has been accused of 
Ebionism because of its keen interest in the poor. 

29. unto the brow of the hill. Above the present Maronite church 
is a cliff some 40 feet above the valley : over this, apparently, 
they intended to hustle Him. Where the road bifurcates He 
awed them with a look (cf. Jn xviii 6), turned sharply to the right, 
and left them amazed. This is in substance Edersheim s inter 
pretation of the passage (L. and T. i 456). 

(c) 31-44 A Day of Miracles at Capernaum 

Here St Luke follows Mk i 21-39 in general very closely, though 
varying the phraseology after his manner. His description of the 
demoniac s reaction to our Lord s command is rather less graphic 
(cf . Lk iv 35 with Mk i 26), but he adds the detail that the exorcism 
did not injure the patient. Again, he fails to mention the hand- 
grasp in the cure of Simon s mother-in-law (Lk iv 39, Mk i 31), but 
says that Christ stood over her and rebuked the fever. 

31 And he came down to Capernaum, a city of Galilee. 
And he was teaching them on the sabbath day : 32 and they 
were astonished at his teaching ; for his word was with 

IV 33-40 ST LUKE 63 

authority. 33 And in the synagogue there was a man, which 
had a spirit of an unclean Mevil ; and he cried out with a 
loud voice, 34 2 Ah ! what have we to do with thee, thou 
Jesus of Nazareth ? art thou come to destroy us ? I know 
thee who thou art, the Holy One of God. 35 And Jesus 
rebuked him, saying, Hold thy peace, and come out of him. 
And when the 1 devil had thrown him down in the midst, he 
came out of him, having done him no hurt. 36 And amaze 
ment came upon all, and they spake together, one with another, 
saying, What is Hhis word ? for with authority and power he 
commandeth the unclean spirits, and they come out. 37 And 
there went forth a rumour concerning him into every place of 
the region round about. 

38 And he rose up from the synagogue, and entered into 
the house of Simon. And Simon s wife s mother was holden 
with a great fever ; and they besought him for her. 39 And 
he stood over her, and rebuked the fever ; and it left her : 
and immediately she rose up and ministered unto them. 

40 And when the sun was setting, all they that had any 
sick with divers diseases brought them unto him ; and he laid 
his hands on every one of them, and healed them. 41 And 
4 devils also came out from many, crying out, and saying, 
Thou art the Son of God. And rebuking them, he suffered 
them not to speak, because they knew that he was the Christ. 

1 Gr. demon. 2 Or, Let alone 

3 Or, this word, that with authority . . . come out ? * Gr. demons. 


31. to Capernaum. Capher-Nahum held sacred by the Jews 
as site of Nahum the Prophet s tomb. Controversy has been hot 
between T ell-Hum and Khan Miniyeh for the true site. Sanday 
(Sacred Sites) arrays the evidence on both sides, and votes for the 
latter. But opinion is now again in favour of Tell-Hum. 

on the sabbath. St Luke records five miracles as wrought on the 
Sabbath Day ; but notes no criticism on this first occasion. See 
note on vi 6-11. 

32. astonished. St Luke uses the same word of Paulus in 
Ac xiii 12. Ramsay (Eecent Discovery, pp. 166-167) points out that 
such astonishment does not necessarily lead to conversion. Cf. 
v. 36. 

with authority. With this and v. 36 cf. St Paul s account of his 

64 ST LUKE [IV 32-40 

own Word in 1 Cor ii 4. In Mat vii 28, 29, where a similar remark 
is made at the end of the Sermon on the Mount, this authoritative 
quality including, no doubt a weighty originality and conviction 
in our Lord s utterance is contrasted with the words of their 
scribes. Cf. Latham, Pastor Pastorum, pp. 203 sqq. 

33. a spirit of an unclean devil (Mark, an unclean spirit ). 
Here we come face to face with that demoniacal possession which 
is so characteristic and prominent a feature of the Gospel story. 
Our Lord, either in accommodation to the ideas of the time, or in 
face of a reality to which the nineteenth century was blind (though 
the medicine and psychology of to-day and to-morrow would take 
a different view), spoke and acted as though demoniacal possession 
were a fact, and were responsible for many cases of abnormality 
and mental derangement. It is interesting to note that Luke the 
Physician wholeheartedly endorses this view, and even speaks 
(v. 39) of rebuking a fever as though it involved personal malignant 

On the whole subject see Edersheim, L. and T. i 479, 480-485, 
607-612; Trench, Miracles of our Lord, Kegan Paul (Popular Edn. 
1886), pp. 162 sqq. 

38. Simon s wife s mother. Simon Peter, and his house, and his 
family are here introduced without explanation. He was too well 
known in Christian circles to need a formal introduction. That he 
had a wife, who accompanied him in his travels, we know also from 
1 Cor ix 5. 

39. rebuked the fever : a great or severe fever Luke calls it, 
using Galen s technical distinction between different kinds (Hobart, 
M.L., p. 3) here he seems to imply a malignant personality behind 
it. But cf . the use of the same expression in quelling wind and wave 
in viii 24. The other Synoptists say that He touched her hand. 

immediately she rose up, &c. : a sign of abnormally swift recovery. 
With the debility usually following a severe attack of malaria it 
would have been impossible for her to have waited on them. On 
this miracle see Trench, Mir., pp. 250-255. 

40. when the sun was setting. At sunset the Sabbath would be 
over, and scrupulous Jews would feel free to come and be healed. 
The first great exhibition of healing-power calls for a word or two 
on this aspect of our Lord s Ministry. The scientific rationale of 
His works of healing is still a matter of speculation. There is, how 
ever, a growing tendency to attribute them to the perfection of 
His sinless Manhood. 

The experience of Spiritual Healers within the Church has gone 
some way towards justifying the hypothesis that there are three 
several planes on which the treatment of man s bodily ills may be 
approached : (a) the purely physical (medicine and surgery) ; 

(b) the mental or psychic (psychiatry, psycho-therapeutics) ; and 

(c) the spiritual (spiritual healing) : that a right approach on the 
higher planes is effectual for the ills of the lower ; and that our 

IV 4 i -44] ST LUKE 65 

Lord habitually worked on the highest (spiritual) plane, His power 
showing its efficacy in all three regions. See Bishop Pakenham- 
Walsh, Divine Healing (S.P.C.K. 1921), where further references 
will be found ; also same writer in Internal. Review of Missions, 
Jan. 1922. 

41. he suffered them not to speak : as in the case of the leper, 
Mat viii 4. But no such injunction to the demoniacally possessed 
is recorded by St Matthew. There must have been special reasons 
for silence. 


42 And when it was day, he came out and went into a 
desert place : and the multitudes sought after him, and came 
unto him, and would have stayed him, that he should not go 
from them. 43 But he said unto them, I must preach the 
J good tidings of the kingdom of God to the other cities also : 
for therefore was I sent. 

44 And he was preaching in the synagogues of 2 Galilee. 

1 Or, gospel 2 Very many ancient authorities read Judaea. 

St Mark makes more of this retirement (i 35-39) and tells us 
that it was extremely early, and that His purpose was prayer. 
It is strange that while the third Evangelist emphasizes prayer 
beyond the other Synoptists (cf., e.g., ch xi, and Introd., p. xl) he 
omits to mention it here. Dr Vernon Bartlet (Oxf. Stud., p. 330) 
concludes that he must have drawn this section not from St Mark 
but from a parallel document. But see note on v 16. 

43. kingdom of God. This phrase in St Luke corresponds to 
St Matthew s (more rabbinical) Kingdom of Heaven. The use 
of it here seems to refer to the same occasion as Mat iv 17, where 
Jesus is said to have adopted the Baptist s formula (cf. Mat iii 2), 
Repent ye ; for the Kingdom of heaven is at hand. 

for therefore was I sent. A phrase of Johannine ring. Cf . him 
that sent me in Jn iv 34, v 30, vi 38, &c. 

44. he was preaching. Edersheim (L. and T. i 446) notes how 
the freedom of preaching which had grown up in the Synagogue 
system proved one of the most potent factors in the spread of 
Christianity. It deserves to be reckoned as a part of the Providential 
Preparation in History for Christ that wonder-working Rule of 
God which brings about marvellous results through the orderly 
and natural succession of events. The role that the Synagogue 
plays in the beginning of our Lord s earthly ministry, it continues 
to play in the ministry of St Paul and his companions (see Acts 

In all the synagogues of Judaea. This reading (Aleph, B, C, L, Q, R, 

66 ST LUKE [Vi- 7 

Syr-Sin.) is doubtless the original here, altered to Galilee (A,D, 
&c.) on account of its superficial difficulty. If Galilee had been 
original, no scribe would have altered it. Even if we interpret 
Judaea as meaning the whole of Palestine, it would not exclude 
Jerusalem (cf. Zahn, iii, p. 161). Hence we may perhaps class this 
passage as one of the points of contact with the fourth Gospel 
(cf. Introd., III, p. xxv), leaving room, at any rate, for an early 
Judaean Ministry. 

V 1 VI 49 Second Period of Galilean Ministry : from the 
Call of the first Disciples to the appointment of the Twelve 
and the Great Sermon 

(a) V 1-11 Call of the first Disciples on the Lake of Galilee 

Between this and the events of chapter iv Edersheim (L. and T. 
i 460 sqq.) places the Visit to the Unknown Feast at Jerusalem 
recorded in Jn v. 

On the relation of the narrative of St Luke to that of St John, 
see further, note on ix 51 sqq., p. 141, and Introd., pp. xxiv-xxvi. 

Latham (Pastor Pastorum, pp. 197 sqq.), without identifying this 
episode with the miracle of Jn xxi, thinks that St Luke has ante 
dated it ; and that the simple account of the call of the four fisher 
men given by Matthew and Mark is the truer one ; but that Luke, 
not knowing of the previous intercourse of Jn i, rightly felt that 
their sudden response to the call needed some explaining ; and 
having this narrative among his records, naturally placed it here. 
(See further, note on w. 4-11 below.) 

V Now it came to pass, while the multitude pressed upon 
him and heard the word of God, that he was standing by the 
lake of Gennesaret ; 2 and he saw two boats standing by the 
lake : but the fishermen had gone out of them, and were 
washing their nets. 3 And he entered into one of the boats, 
which was Simon s, and asked him to put out a little from 
the land. And he sat down and taught the multitudes out of 
the boat. 4 And when he had left speaking, he said unto 
Simon, Put out into the deep, and let down your nets for 
a draught. 5 And Simon answered and said, Master, we 
toiled all night, and took nothing : but at thy word I will 
let down the nets. 6 And when they had this done, they 
inclosed a great multitude of fishes ; and their nets were 
breaking ; 7 and they beckoned unto their partners in the 
other boat, that they should come and help them. And they 

V8-ii] ST LUKE 67 

came, and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink. 

8 But Simon Peter, when he saw it, fell down at Jesus knees, 
saying, Depart from me ; for I am a sinful man, Lord. 

9 For he was amazed, and all that were with him, at the 
draught of the fishes which they had taken ; 10 and so were 
also James and John, sons of Zebedee, which were partners 
with Simon. And Jesus said unto Simon, Fear not ; from 
henceforth thou shalt J catch men. 11 And when they had 
brought their boats to land, they left all, and followed him. 

1 Gr. take alive. 

3. which was Simon s. Simon has already been incidentally 
mentioned, iv 38. Mat iv 18 sqq. and Mk i 16 sqq. formally intro 
duce to us the brethren Simon and Andrew (sons of John Mat xvi 17) 
and James and John, sons of Zebedee. St Luke brings them into 
his narrative incidentally, even as he brought in Capernaum in iv 23. 

taught the multitudes out of the boat. This may have become 
habitual with Him. It had its obvious convenience, and the voice 
would carry well across calm water. It is apparently a different 
instance that is given in Mat xiii 1-2, Mk iv 1. 

4-11. The Miraculous Draught of Fishes suggests at once 
the strikingly similar episode of Jn xxi, which, however, has its 
marked differences. There is obvious point in the theory that 
St Luke has antedated the miracle, having received it, so to speak, 
undated yet located in Galilee ; and having no place for Galilee 
in his post-resurrection narratives (cf. note on xxiv 6), he might 
naturally relegate it to the early Ministry. If this be so, it may be 
classed with those cases (see Introd., p. xxiv) in which the fourth 
Evangelist seems to be silently correcting the third. 

On the other hand, in view of the naturalness of each narrative, 
it may be that the facts are duplicate, not merely the records. Cf . 
Introd., p. xix, note. 

In either case St Luke is psychologically right in connecting 
the miracle with penitence and a call of Peter. If it is not his 
first call to definite discipleship, it will be, as in Jn xxi, a preliminary 
to restoration and a renewed commission after his fall. 

On the Miracle see Trench, Mir., pp. 134-151. 

4. let down your nets. The symbolical significance of this 
acted parable is among the richest in the New Testament. This 
is an ever-fresh message to exhausted and disappointed missioners. 
The expert thinks he knows that there is no chance of success : 
yet the moment of utter hopelessness brings a call to new ventures 
of faith. 

5. but at thy word. The answer marks, as Edersheim says, 
the new trust, and the new work springing out of that trust. 

8. Simon Peter. The surname is introduced incidentally, as 


68 ST LUKE [Vn-i6 

was his first name (see note on v. 3). From Mk iii 16 (cf. Mat x 2) 
we should have judged that the name Peter was given later, at 
the nomination to Apostleship. But here again the fourth Gospel 
comes in to explain. The name, in its Aramaic form Cephas, had 
been given him at his preliminary call, after the Baptist s preaching 
(Jn i 42). 

Depart from me ; for I am a sinful man. Peter, impressed more 
and more by the Lord s teaching as he sits beside Him in the boat, 
is overwhelmed by this token of the superhuman. It is perhaps an 
unconscious recognition of the Deity in Him (cf. St Thomas s cry, 
Jn xx 28) which inevitably thrills him through with a sense of 
unworthiness : cf . Is vi 5, Job xlii 5, 6. 

(b) 12-16 A Leper healed 

The Marcan narrative, dropped at the end of the last chapter, 
is here taken up again, and v 12 vi 16 follow closely Mk i 40 iii 19, 
with St Luke s characteristic variations of phrase. The rest of 
chapter vi is occupied by the Great Sermon (more or less parallel 
to Matthew s Sermon on the Mount ), and the Marcan framework 
is not resumed by St Luke till Lk viii 4. St Matthew also breaks 
off from the Marcan narrative at the same point, and inserts his 
Sermon on the Mount (Mat v vii). If we are to choose between 
the order of Matthew and Luke, it seems more natural historically 
to place a great pronouncement later, after the development of 
discipleship and the choice of the Twelve, though logically such 
a programme of Reform might well find a place at the very fore 
front of the Redeemer s Mission. 

12 And it came to pass, while he was in one of the cities ; 
behold, a man full of leprosy : and when he saw Jesus, he 
fell on his face, and besought him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, 
thou canst make me clean. 13 And he stretched forth his 
hand, and touched him, saying, I will ; be thou made clean. 
And straightway the leprosy departed from him. 14 And he 
charged him to tell no man : but go thy way, and shew thyself 
to the priest, and offer for thy cleansing, according as Moses 
commanded, for a testimony unto them. 15 But so much the 
more went abroad the report concerning him : and great 
multitudes came together to hear, and to be healed of their 
infirmities. 16 But he withdrew himself in the deserts, and 

12. full of leprosy, and therefore, according to Levitical 
standards (see Lev xiii), nearer to a hope of cleansing. Matthew 
and Mark say simply a leper. This is one of the Physician s 

v i2-i 7 ] ST LUKE 69 

touches. The leprosy of the Bible which by the primitive Mosaic 
diagnosis was extended also to inanimate objects (by infection ?) 
was apparently some infectious or contagious skin disease or group 
of diseases. Originating doubtless in filth, it became a type of 
physical, moral, and ceremonial uncleanness. Its diagnosis and 
treatment are given at length in Lev xiii. The priest was the 
official judge of its presence and its cure (cf. v. 14 below). To touch 
a leper involved ceremonial defilement. He is expressly condemned 
in Lev xiii 45, 46 to live apart, an outcast from society, and warn 
off mankind by the cry Unclean ! unclean ! 

if thou wilt, thou canst. The expression of a prevailing faith. 

13. touched him : fearless of ceremonial defilement where mercy 
and compassion swayed Him. Even so, deliberately following their 
Lord s footsteps, St Francis in the thirteenth century, and Father 
Damien in later days, have not shrunk from closer contact with 
the more deadly disease of elephantiasis which has been (probably 
erroneously) identified with the leprosy of the Bible. 

14. tell no man. On the one hand our Lord seems to have 
desired to avoid publicity at this stage of His Mission (cf . Mk i 34, 
v 43, vii 36), and note on viii 56. On the other the incidental 
proclamation of ceremonial defilement might have kept away some 
whom He wished to help. 

shew thyself to the priest : as ordered in Lev xiii 16, &c. 

offer for thy cleansing. The elaborate ritual of the leper s offering 
is set forth in Lev xiv. 

16. withdrew himself in the deserts, and prayed. Perhaps it 
was the intention to notice our Lord s habit of prayerful retirement 
at this point that led him to omit it at iv 42. In Acts he gives us 
typical examples of things which must have recurred one apostolic 
Council, one Eucharist, and so on and the reason that he omits 
the feeding of the 4,000 is probably because its lesson is simply that 
of the 5,000. N.B. the plural deserts, suggesting many times and 

(c) 17-26 Healing of a Paralysed Man 

See Trench, Mir., pp. 214-225, Latham, Pastor Pastorum 
(Deighton 1891, p. 215). 

St Luke evidently regards this as an important occasion, marking 
a definite stage in the Ministry. He prepares us for it by an im 
pressive preamble in v. 17. In face of a representative gathering 
of religious leaders, Jesus throws down His challenge. The Rabbis 
accuse Him of blasphemy : the crowd glorify God. 

17 And it came to pass on one of those days, that he was 
teaching ; and there were Pharisees and doctors of the law 
sitting by, which were come out of every village of Galilee and 
Judaea and Jerusalem : and the power of the Lord was with 

70 ST LUKE [V 1 7-26 

him Ho heal. 18 And behold, men bring on a bed a man that 
was palsied : and they sought to bring him in, and to lay 
him before him. 19 And not finding by what way they might 
bring him in because of the multitude, they went up to the 
housetop, and let him down through the tiles with his couch 
into the midst before Jesus. 20 And seeing their faith, he 
said, Man, thy sins are forgiven thee. 21 And the scribes and 
the Pharisees began to reason, saying, Who is this that speaketh 
blasphemies ? Who can forgive sins, but God alone ? 22 But 
Jesus perceiving their reasonings, answered and said unto 
them, 2 What reason ye in your hearts ? 23 Whether is easier, 
to say, Thy sins are forgiven thee ; or to say, Arise and walk ? 
24 But that ye may know that the Son of man hath 3 power 
on earth to forgive sins (he said unto him that was palsied), 
I say unto thee, Arise, and take up thy couch, and go unto thy 
house. 25 And immediately he rose up before them, and took 
up that whereon he lay, and departed to his house, glorifying 
God. 26 And amazement took hold on all, and they glorified 
God ; and they were filled with fear, saying, We have seen 
strange things to-day. 

1 Gr. that he should heal. Many ancient authorities read that he should heal 
them. 2 Or, Why 3 Or, authority 

17. Pharisees : here first mentioned in third Gospel. (Of. Note 
on i 77.) The name means Separatists. They are probably the 
descendants of the Hasidaeans (Chasidim) of 1 Mace ii 42, under 
a new designation. Although called in the N.T. (Ac xv 5, xxvi 5) 
and in Josephus (Ant. XIII v 9 and passim) a sect they were 
really only an ecclesiola in ecclesia. Their aim was to realize the 
ideal of legal purity as interpreted by the Scribes, whose business 
it was to hand on and to define by fresh decisions the traditions of 
the elders. For this reason they organized themselves into groups, 
the members of which called themselves Haberim = Associates. 
As God separates light from darkness, Israel from the nations, 
the Levites from the People, so they endeavoured to separate 
themselves from every thing and person that defiled, in the ritual 
sense. They did not ordinarily mix in politics, and when they did, 
it was only to fight for freedom to obey the Law and to bring life 
more and more under its influence. St Paul s characterization of 
Israel s piety is pre-eminently true of the Pharisees . . . They have 
a zeal for God. They exerted a great influence among the people 
because of their reputation for learning and piety and because they 
kept alive the Messianic Hope. The Pharisees, says Josephus 

V 1 7-21] ST LUKE 71 

(Ant. XVIII i 3, 4), have such an influence over the people, that 
whatsoever is done about divine worship, prayers, and sacrifices, is 
performed according to their direction : the communities give them 
such an excellent testimony because convinced that they seek both 
in word and deed only that which is most honourable. This 
description of their spiritual influence is also true of the Pharisees 
in the time of our Lord, though then they had no voice in the 
government, and until about A. D. 63 the management of the 
Temple was in the hands of the Sadducees. 

They (although some of them were priests themselves) taught 
that the priests were only the deputies of the people, and ordered 
the deputation of laymen to be present at the daily sacrifice. They 
expounded the Scriptures on Sabbath days in the Synagogues. 
They stood for sacramentalism in daily life. They founded 
elementary schools and academies. The N.T. presentation of 
Pharisaism can be only rightly estimated if we keep in mind the 
fact that in the time of our Lord there was a great variety, not only 
of apocalyptical and mystical tendencies, but also of Pharisaic 
piety. Legalism produced its sinners and hypocrites as well as its 
saints and martyrs (P. L.). 

18. men : four in number, according to Mk ii 3. 

a man that was palsied : in Mk ii 3 a paralytic. St Luke here 
alters, as he usually does, the popular untrained language of Mark 
about medical matters. Elsewhere (e. g. vi 6, viii 27, viii 55) he 
has also some details interesting from the physician s point of view, 
to add. (Cf. Ramsay, Luke the Physician, pp. 57, 58.) Hobart (M.L., 
pp. 6, 40) quotes Hippocrates, Aretaeus, Dioscorides, and Galen for 
Trapa\e\vfj.evo<s as the technical term. 

19. went up to the housetop : by an external stair, on to the flat 
eastern roof. 

through the tiles : peculiar to St Luke. They removed, perhaps, 
some overhanging verandah roofing, and lowered the pallet by 
ropes into the courtyard. Mk ii 5 says they dug through the 
(mud) roofing. 

20. seeing their faith. The charter of intercession. The 
sufferer himself is helpless, immobile : his friends bring him to 
Jesus, and He rewards their faith. So we by intercession may bring 
to Him such as cannot move of themselves, and our faith prevail. 
Yet we cannot be sure that the sufferer s own faith is excluded : 
it may have been there, discernible to the Lord though incapable 
of outward self-expression as that of the impotent man at Lystra 
was to St Paul. Ac xiv 9. 

21. Who can forgive sins, but God alone ? The dilemma is the 
same as that which emerges in Jn viii and again in the Jewish Trial, 
Lk xxii 70, 71 aut Deus, aut homo non bonus. If Jesus were not 
what we know Him to be, His claim would really have been 
blasphemous. Yet it is as Son of Man Messianic representative 
man (v. 24) that He exercises it (cf . note on vi 5). 

72 ST LUKE [22-29 

22. perceiving their reasonings : reading their unspoken thoughts. 

23. Whether is easier, to say ? Each is of course equally easy to 
utter ; but the validity of the second can be tested at once, involv 
ing, as it does, an outward manifestation. 

24. the Son of man : here the phrase first occurs in our Gospel. 
The Greek phrase, as it stands, might almost be translated the 
Benefactor of Humanity (there is no Greek word for humanity 
as distinct from man ). Except for Ac vii 56 this term is found 
only in the Gospels, where it is exclusively used by our Lord as 
a designation of Himself, and in all these contexts it implies directly 
or indirectly a service gratuitously rendered. Now the title Son 
in Greek inscriptions of the first century is habitually given to citizens 
or members of a society who have shown themselves gratuitous and 
conspicuous benefactors. Son of a city or a tribe is a 
frequent title of honour, especially in Asia Minor. The orator 
Herodes Atticus was awarded at Corinth the title of Son of Greece 
(utos EAAaSos) for his munificence in erecting public buildings. 
In this sense the Greek phrase would express to that generation 
that our Lord was a True Son (i. e. Benefactor, Saviour) of 
Humanity. In the Aramaic Bar-nasha, working back to the 
Hebrew Ben-adam, the title, though originally meaning simply 
a man, would strike on their ears with the eschatological force 
derived from Dan vii 13 and Enoch 46 and 48 (cf. 4 Esdr. 13); 
and was definitely used by our Lord in order to express His 
Messianic consciousness and mission. [The substance of this note 
is due to P. L.] 

power : authority (eouna), cf . iv 36, vi 2, 9. The thought of 
the new authority and power runs through the whole section. 

on earth. Proclaiming on earth that which is given in heaven 

26. This description of the mingled exultation and awe of the 
crowds (cf. iv 22) is characteristic of the Gospel which forms a 
prelude to the story of Pentecost. Edersheim (L. & T. i 506) 
compares it to the shout of the convinced people when the fire 
fell on Carmel (1 Kgs xviii 39). Syr-Sin.. And astonishment took 
hold of them, and they were all glorifying God and saying, We 
have seen glorious great things to-day (P. L.). 

(d) 27-39 The Call of Levi, Feast in his house, and Dispute 

on Fasting 

27 And after these things he went forth, and beheld 
a publican, named Levi, sitting at the place of toll, and said 
unto him, Follow me. 28 And he forsook all, and rose up 
and followed him. 29 And Levi made him a great feast in 
his house : and there was a great multitude of publicans and 

V 27-29] ST LUKE 73 

of others that were sitting at meat with them. 30 And Hhe 
Pharisees and their scribes murmured against his disciples, 
saying, Why do ye eat and drink with the publicans and 
sinners ? 31 And Jesus answering said unto them, They that 
are whole have no need of a physician ; but they that are 
sick. 32 I am not come to call the righteous but sinners to 

1 Or, the Pharisees and the, scribes among them 

27. he went forth. Mk ii 13 adds by the sea side. The toll- 
place or customs-house would naturally be at the junction of the 
trade-route to Damascus and the landing-place for boats, and 
here also would be the obvious place for our Lord s sea-side teaching 
(of. v 1-3), so that Levi, sitting before his toll-place, would have 
had good opportunities of hearing Him. (Cf. Edersheim, L. & T. i 
p. 514.) 

a publican named Levi. The Publicani proper were men of 
wealth and position who farmed out the taxes ; the publicans 
of the Gospels are the actual taxgatherers, whose interest was to 
enrich both themselves and their principals by extortion. In 
Rabbinical literature they have a very bad name. And of all 
taxgatherers the douaniers, custom-house officers, were most deeply 
execrated. As habitually exacting more than was due (cf. Lk iii 
12, 13) they were disqualified from being witnesses, and it was 
a maxim that repentance was specially difficult for them 
(Edersheim, p. 515). Their unpopularity was doubtless enhanced 
because they were in the pay of the foreigner and so regarded 
as anti-Nationalist. Publicans and sinners (v. 30) is in the 
language of the average Pharisee of Gospel times a synonym for 
social outcasts. 

Levi. There can be no doubt that the incident of Mat ix 9 sqq. 
is identical with this. The name Levi (here and Mk ii 14) is there 
replaced by Matthew (=gift of the Lord), and Matthew, not 
Levi, appears in all three Gospels in the Apostolic list (vi 15). 
In Galilee, says Edersheim (p. 514), it was common to have two 
names one the strictly Jewish, the other the Galilean. Mk ii 14 
calls him son of Alphaeus, which may make him brother of 
James the little. See further, note on xxiv 10. On Matthew 
see Latham, Pastor Pastorum, pp. 214-217. 

28. he forsook all, and rose up and followed him. To many 
readers the words will recall Carpaccio s picture in S. Giorgio degli 
Schiavoni, Venice, and Ruskin s comments thereon. 

29. made him a great feast. St Luke here supplies a link in 
the sequence which Matthew and Mark omit, though they describe 
the feast. Our Evangelist alone records our Lord s self-invited 
acceptance of the hospitality of another publican, Zacchaeus 
(xix 2-10 ; see also notes on vii 32 and xiv 1). 

74 ST LUKE [V 30-39 

30. murmured against his disciples. Their moral cowardice 
made them averse to a direct attack on Christ, and they may 
have hoped to wean away some of the novices by an appeal to 
recognized propriet}^. It is Jesus Himself who answers them (cf . vi 3) . 

31. They that are whole, &c. All three Gospels record this 
saying, but only the Physician -Evangelist uses the technical word 
vyicuVoj res. The answer disclaims any desire for popularity among 
the riff-raff. The company He keeps He keeps for no personal aim 
or taste, but because of the need of those with whom He consorts. 

32. to repentance. In the true text these words occur in this 
Gospel alone, and may perhaps be reckoned among St Luke s 
ironical touches (cf., e. g., xiii 32, 33). The Scribes and Pharisees 
trusted in themselves that they were righteous (xviii 9), and 
were therefore immune from the mercy of God in Christ ! The 
Parable of the Pharisee and Publican forms a remarkable com 
mentary on this passage. 


33 And they said unto him, The disciples of John fast 
often, and make supplications ; likewise also the disciples of 
the Pharisees ; but thine eat and drink. 34 And Jesus said 
unto them, Can ye make the sons of the bride -chamber fast, 
while the bridegroom is with them ? 35 But the days will 
come ; and when the bridegroom shall be taken away from 
them, then will they fast in those days. 36 And he spake also 
a parable unto them ; No man rendeth a piece from a new 
garment and putteth it upon an old garment ; else he will rend 
the new, and also the piece from the new will not agree with 
the old. 37 And no man putteth new wine into old Wine 
skins ; else the new wine will burst the skins, and itself will 
be spilled, and the skins will perish. 38 But new wine must 
be put into fresh wine-skins. 39 And no man having drunk 
old wine desireth new : for he saith, The old is 2 good. 

1 That is, skins used as bottles. 2 Many ancient authorities read better. 

33. they said unto him. Who are the questioners ? St Matthew 
makes them the disciples of John (ix 14) ; St Mark is ambiguous, 
but might mean that disciples both of John and of the Pharisees 
combined to put the question (Mk ii 18) ; St Luke is also ambiguous, 
but appears to mean the Pharisees and their Scribes of v. 30. 
On the whole the balance seems in favour of the Marcan record, 
which the first and third Evangelists will have interpreted in 
different ways. 

fast often. The Pharisees prided themselves (xviii 12) on fasting 

V 33-36] ST LUKE 75 

twice in the week, Tuesdays and Thursdays ; the Early Church, 
to avoid those days and in commemoration of the Betrayal and 
Crucifixion, chose Wednesdays and Fridays. The only Fast 
enjoined by the Levitical Law is that of the Day of Atonement 
(Lev xxiii 29-32). This is the only reference we have to the Bap 
tist s inculcation of fasting, though we might have inferred it from 
the austerity of his own life and from his penitential message. 

make supplications. Only in St Luke. It prepares us for the 
statement in xi 1 that John had taught his disciples to pray. 
(See note there.) 

34. the sons of the bride-chamber : the friends of bride and 
bridegroom who are wedding-guests. The same O.T. metaphor 
had already been used by John to his disciples (cf. Jn iii 29). 
Jesus is, at this period of His Mission, the centre of joyous 
enthusiasm. Soon He will be transformed into the Man of 
Sorrows, and finally will be taken away by death. 

35. the days will come. These days are, literally taken, the 
period from Good Friday to Easter morning : the nucleus of what 
afterwards became the Church s Lenten fast, and the days when, 
traditionally, believers fast from the sacramental Bread, or at any 
rate do not celebrate the Holy Eucharist. Notice the early hint of 
His death, and cf . the allusive references in Jn ii 19, iii 14. 

then will they fast. They will, in O.T. phrase, afflict their 
souls when their Lord is removed. It is sometimes said that our 
Lord nowhere directly enjoins fasting. But there is (a) His 
example in the Wilderness, iv 2 ; (b) His acceptance of the pious 
customs of His day, almsgiving, prayer, and fasting (Mat vi 1-18) 
in the Sermon on the Mount ; and (c) the reference to fasting in 
the incident of the Lunatic Boy (Mk ix 29, Mat xvii 21), though 
absent from the best MSS may yet prove to be genuine, and 
excised very early by opponents of asceticism. 

36. a parable. This is St Luke s first reference to our Lord s 
Parabolic Teachings. He and St Matthew have in common two 
examples beyond what they draw from St Mark, who has one (the 
seed growing secretly ) peculiar to himself ; St Matthew supplies 
ten parables of his own, and St Luke eighteen. The fourth 
Gospel has no parables strictly so-called ; their places are taken 
by such allegories as The Light of the World, The Good Shepherd, 
The True Vine. The Parables of the Synoptic Gospels are analogical 
tales. They picture something natural and reasonable in nature 
or human nature, and argue therefrom to the reasonableness of 
teaching given about spiritual and heavenly things frequently 
about the nature of the spiritual realm, The Kingdom of God or 
of Heaven. Very frequently they contain an a fortiori argument 
if imperfect man would act thus, how shall not God, in His 
perfection, do still more ? (For further classification of N.T. 
Parables, see the article on Parables in any of the standard 
Bible Dictionaries.) 

76 ST LUKE [V 3 6-Vl 5 

a piece from a new garment. St Luke s version of the argument 
is clear, and though different from that of Mk ii 21 (in which it is 
the new patch of stiff and heavy undressed cloth that pulls and 
tears the old material) leads to the same conclusion. Christianity 
will not serve merely to patch up Judaism : it must eventually 
supersede it. There must be a fresh start ; Judaism as it stands 
is incompatible with the new life of The Kingdom. 

37. new wine into old wine-skins: where the dregs will start 
a ferment and burst the skins or perhaps old means worn-out 
skins which need to be discarded. Here is incompatibility again, 
between the New Covenant and the Old, or possibly the wine 
skin may represent the individual heart. For the pair of parables 
vv. 36, 37, cf. the Mustard Seed and the Leaven (xiii 18-20), the 
Treasure and the Pearl (Mat xiii 44-46). Our Lord loves to com 
bine two illustrations of the same thought, to give completeness. 

39. And no man, &c. This verse is peculiar to St Luke, and 
characteristic of him. Although it confuses rather than clinches 
the argument, he could not omit a saying that recognized, in a 
kindly spirit, the natural, wistful clinging to what has been, which 
is the foe of all progress in the world. If the best is the enemy 
of the good, the good is also the enemy of the best. 

(e) VI 1-11 Two Disputes about the Sabbath 

The Rabbinical Sabbath Law, as given in the Talmud, is a 
maze of petty restrictions sometimes of the absurdest kind. An 
idea of it may be obtained from Edersheim s Appendix VII (L. and 
T. ii 777-787). Against this, as typical of the errors of contem 
porary Judaism, our Lord wages war, even going out of His way 
to outrage Pharisaic scruples by Sabbath works of mercy, and so 
excite against Himself bitter, and in the end murderous, hostility. 
The campaign opens here, according to St Luke. Further develop 
ments may be traced in xiii 12, xiv 1, where see notes. 

VI Now it came to pass on a 1 sabbath, that he was going 
through the cornfields ; and his disciples plucked the ears of 
corn, and did eat, rubbing them in their hands. 2 But certain 
of the Pharisees said, Why do ye that which it is not lawful 
to do on the sabbath day ? 3 And Jesus answering them 
said, Have ye not read even this, what David did, when he 
was an hungred, he, and they that wefe with him ; 4 how 
he entered into the house of God, and did take and eat the 
shewbread, and gave also to them that were with him ; which 
it is not lawful to eat save for the priests alone ? 5 And he 
said unto them, The Son of man is lord of the sabbath. 
1 Many ancient authorities insert second-first. 

VI: -6] ST LUKE 77 


1. on a Sabbath : A.V. has on the second sabbath after the first, 
and R.V. Marg. Many ancient authorities insert second first. 
The word so rendered (deuteroproto) is found in the MSS B, L, and 
several other authorities of repute, but the MS authority for its 
omission is much greater. However, the proverbial difficulty of 
the word itself constitutes an argument for its retention. It is 
a priori more likely that a phrase so obscure even to St Jerome 
and his contemporaries (Hieron. Ep. lii, cited by Plummer) would be 
omitted if original than inserted later. Levertoff suggests that 
here (as in Odyssey xxiv 28), we must read 77750/1 for irpiara. The 
mistake would be easy in second-century papyri. 

2. that which . . . is not lawful : because in the meticulous rules 
of contemporary Rabbinism such action, innocent in itself, was 
interpreted as labour i. e. as equivalent to reaping and winnow 
ing. See Edersheim, L. and T. ii 783. 

3. what David did. According to the Midrash, the incident 
recorded in 1 Sam xxi 1-6 happened on a Sabbath. It is quite 
possible that this lesson from the Former Prophets was read in 
the Synagogue at the Haphtara (prophetic lesson) on that Sabbath. 
You would not dare to criticize David s action, which broke the 
very letter of the Law, from the like motive of hunger. 

5. The Son of man is lord of the sabbath. Edersheim quotes 
a Rabbinical saying, representing, no doubt, the liberal thought 
of the times : The Sabbath is handed over to you ; not, ye are 
handed over to the Sabbath (Life and Times, ii, p. 58), which 
reminds one of the phrase added here by St Mark (ii 27), The 
sabbath was made for man, not man for the sabbath. 

lord of the sabbath : as representative of man and of his free 
dom. Here the Western Text D according to F. Blass, Luke s 
later (Roman) edition of the Gospel (see Introd., p. xlii) has a very 
interesting insertion, 5b. On the same day he saw a man working 
on the Sabbath, and said unto him : Man, if thou knowest what 
thou art doing, blessed art thou ; but if thou knowest it not, thou art 
cursed and a transgressor of the law (Blass, Philol. Gosp., pp. 153 sqq.). 
The connexion with v. 6 is altered in this version. It goes on 
And entering again on the Sabbath into the Synagogue wherein 
was a man, &c. 

6-11. THE MAN WITH A WITHERED HAND. This is the second 
occasion on which St Luke records Sabbath-day works of mercy 
wrought by our Lord (cf. iv 31 and 38) ; and it is at this point, 
after the incident in the cornfields, that he makes the criticism and 
opposition of the Pharisees to show itself. (With this agree Mat 
xii 14 and Mk iii 6.) W. J. Richmond, Gospel of the Rejection, 
p. 23, urges that the sudden outburst involves previous struggle 
with the Jews such as St John records. It bursts out again when 
He heals the Infirm Woman (xiii 14) and the Dropsical Man 
(xiv 1) ; and our Lord meets it in each case with a comparison of 
humane treatment of the ox and ass. 

78 ST LUKE [VI 6-12 

6 And it came to pass on another sabbath, that he entered 
into the synagogue and taught : and there was a man there, 
and his right hand was withered. 7 And the scribes and the 
Pharisees watched him, whether he would heal on the sab 
bath ; that they might find how to accuse him. 8 But he 
knew their thoughts ; and he said to the man that had his 
hand withered, Rise up, and stand forth in the midst. And 
he arose and stood forth. 9 And Jesus said unto them, 
I ask you, Is it lawful on the sabbath to do good, or to do 
harm ? to save a life, or to destroy it ? 10 And he looked 
round about on them all, and said unto him, Stretch forth 
thy hand. And he did so : and his hand was restored. 11 But 
they were filled with 1 madness ; and communed one with 
another what they might do to Jesus. 

6. his right hand : St Mark says simply a withered hand 
(iii 1) ; St Luke adds right. The medical mind demands such 
specification (Ramsay, Luke the Physician, p. 58). 

7. watched him : as, later, when he healed the dropsical man at 
a Sabbath-feast (xiv 1). This comes from the Marcan record 
(Mkiii 2), but St Mark further records here a conspiracy of Pharisees 
and Herodians against Jesus (iii 6) ; which may corroborate the 
hint of association between the Pharisees and Herod in Lk xiii 
32 ; cf. v. 11. 

9. to do good as I am trying to do or to do harm as you are ; 
to save a life as I am doing or to destroy it as is in your hearts 
to do (cf. v. 11). 

11. communed with one another. St Mark here (not St Matthew) 
adds with the Herodians. Already (as Adeney notices ad loc.) the 
Pharisaic party had accumulated grievances against the Lord : 
(a) the claim to forgive sins (v 21 sqq.), (6) the consorting with 
publicans and sinners (v 30), (c) the neglect of fasting (v 34), 
(d) these two cases of Sabbath-breaking. As a result they are 
filled with madness. We have here a crisis in the relations between 
our Lord and the religious Leaders. 

(f ) 12-16 Nomination of the Twelve 

On the Gospel narratives of the Ministry as a story of the training 
of the Twelve, see Latham. Pastor Pastorum (Deighton 1891). 
On the choosing of the Apostles, ib. 228-269, and on their individual 
characteristics, p. 244 sq. 

Vii2-i6] ST LUKE 79 

12 And it came to pass in these days, that he went out 
into the mountain to pray ; and he continued all night in 
prayer to God. 13 And when it was day, he called his dis 
ciples : and he chose from them twelve, whom also he named 
apostles ; 14 Simon, whom he also named Peter, and Andrew 
his brother, and James and John, and Philip and Bartholomew, 
15 and Matthew and Thomas, and James the son of Alphaeus, 
and Simon which was called the Zealot, 16 and Judas the *son 
of James, and Judas Iscariot, which was the traitor ; 

1 Or, brother. See Jude i. 

12. all night in prayer. This night of devotion before the 
appointing of the Apostles is one of the most significant of St Luke s 
special mentions of prayer ; cf. iii 21, xi 1, &c. It emphasizes 
the importance of the step about to be taken. So it became natural 
to Christ s followers to pray before choosing the Seven (Ac vi 6), 
and before sending Barnabas and Saul on their pioneer mission 
(Ac xiii 2, 3). St Matthew s only reference to prayer in this con 
nexion (Mark has none) is the exhortation, Pray ye therefore the 
Lord of the harvest (Mat ix 38), with which St Luke introduces 
the later appointment of the Seventy (x 2). 

13. twelve : symbolic of the Twelve Tribes the totality of 
God s People ; cf. Rev xxi 12, 14. 

apostles, i. e. Messengers men sent forth primarily for 
the immediate mission. Of the Twelve St Matthew only uses it 
at their appointment (x 2), St Mark only then and on their return 
from the mission (iii 14, vi 30). St Luke employs it at intervals 
xvii 5, xxii 14, xxiv 10, and very frequently in the Acts. St John 
has it only once (xiii 16), and then not technically his phrase is 
the disciples. 

The lists in the three Synoptists, as Dr J. A. Robinson points 
out (Encyclopaedia Biblica, s.v.), show three constant groups of 
four names each, the first name in each group being constant, 
while the order of the rest changes : 

14-16. (1) Mark Peter, James, John, Andrew. 

Matthew Peter, Andrew, James, John. 
Luke Peter, Andrew, James, John. 

(2) Mark Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas. 
Matthew Philip, Bartholomew, Thomas, Matthew. 
Luke Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas. 

(3) Mark James of Alphaeus, Thaddaeus, Simon the 

Cananean, Judas Iscariot. 
Matthew James of Alphaeus, Thaddaeus, Simon the 

Cananean, Judas Iscariot. 
Luke James of Alphaeus, Simon the Zealot, Judas 

of James, Judas Iscariot. 

80 ST LUKE [VI 17-49 

The only points which oall for comment are (a) Luke s transla 
tion of Cananaean into the more intelligible Zealot (Judas must 
have been one of the fanatical anti-Roman Nationalists), and 
(6) his substitution of Judas of James for Thaddaeus. The 
man doubtless had the two names, as had Levi the second name of 
Matthew (see note on v 27). Another instance is probably to be 
found in Bartholomew, who is almost certainly to be identified 
with the Nathanael who is brought to Christ by Philip in Jn i 45. 

(g) 17-49 The Sermon on the Level Place 

The connexion and partial identity with the Sermon on the 
Mount of Mat v vii is obvious alike from the opening with 
Beatitudes and the general tenor of each, but the differences are 
perplexing. As to the locality, each might be suited by the 
traditional green depression between the twin peaks of Mt. Kurun 
Hattin, W. of Capernaum. As to time, St Matthew puts it before, 
St Luke immediately after, the nomination of the Twelve. The 
discrepancy in length (111 verses in Matthew, 29 in Luke) may be 
accounted for in two ways. (1) St Luke, writing for Gentiles, 
quite naturally omits the comparison of the Old and New Laws 
(Mat v 17 sqq. and parts of vi) ; it is possible that he had this 
before him, and deliberately left it out. 1 (2) St Matthew doubtless 
aggregates and groups sayings found in his source. Not a few of 
these are found scattered about the peculiar section (ix 50 xix 27) 
of the third Gospel. See, e. g., xi 9-13 (Mat vi 5-15, vii 12 sqq.), 
xii 22-31 (Mat vi 25-33), xiii 25, 26 (Mat vii 22) : where the saying 
in Luke seems to follow naturally out of the context. 2 Though it 
is conceivable that the Master may have repeated these sayings, 
and St Luke have omitted them here because he was going to 
record them later. The real difficulty is with certain details, e. g. 
the Beatitudes, which in Luke are directed to simple material 
conditions, and in Matthew are spiritualized ; Luke s omission of 
those addressed to the meek, the merciful, the pure in heart, the 
peacemakers so characteristic that we must account them 
genuine sayings of our Lord ; so obviously congenial to Luke s 
spirit that we cannot conceive his deliberately omitting them. 
Again, it is hard to account for St Matthew s omission of the four 
corresponding woes (Lk vi 24-26) if the two Evangelists had the 
same source before them, though the earlier placing of the discourse 
in Matthew makes the omission of the woes more apparent 
(Pastor Pastorum, pp. 256 sqq., Plummer ad loc.). Plummer gives 
six suggested hypotheses, and is inclined to agree with Sanday 

1 Mr Lummis (How Luke was written, Camb. Press 1915, p. 67), who thinks 
Luke had the text of Matthew before him, says, Almost all the passages in 
Matthew s sermon that Luke absolutely discards are those which are unfitted for 
a writing intended for Gentile readers. 

* There are at least two sayings in St Luke s Sermon that occur in other 
contexts in St Matthew : Lk vi 39 = Mat xv 14, Lk vi 40 = Mat x 24, 

VI i 7 -2o] ST LUKE 81 

and P. Ewald that Luke has an extra source recording a different 
sermon sufficiently like that worked up by St Matthew in chs v 
vii for him to identify the two, and to fill up his outline from that 
passage in the source (Q, Logia ?) which they both used. 

The Beatitudes themselves, as well as other pregnant sayings, 
would doubtless be repeated more than once by the Teacher, in 
various contexts and with various shades of meaning. 

After the introduction (17-19) describing the occasion (cf. v 17), 
more or less paralleled by Mk iii 7-12, Mat iv 24 sq., the Sermon 
falls into three parts ; (a) Paradoxes of Discipleship ; The Beati 
tudes and Woes (20-26) ; (/?) The New Commandment of Love 
(27-38) ; (y) Enforcement of the teaching by brief parabolic sayings 

17 And he came down with them, and stood on a level 
place, and a great multitude of his disciples, and a great 
number of the people from all Judaea and Jerusalem, and the 
sea coast of Tyre and Sidon, which came to hear him, and 
to be healed of their diseases ; 18 and they that were troubled 
with unclean spirits were healed. 19 And all the multitude 
sought to touch him : for power came forth from him, and 
healed them all. 

17. on a level place : not plain, as A.V. It may or may not 
be identical with the Mountain of Mat v 1. See introductory 
note above. 

a great number. Here, as in Mat v 1, it is the vast crowds (with 
whom He first deals) which necessitate His withdrawing to a less 
accessible spot to address the inner circle of His disciples (see 

Judcea and Jerusalem . . . Tyre, and Sidon : suggests the wide 
range north and south of Palestine, to which His fame had already 
spread. The first words harmonize with, though they do not necessi 
tate, a previous Judaean Mission such as St John narrates (cf . note 
on iv 44). 

(a) 20-23. BEATITUDES (cf. Mat. v 3-12). The Qualifications 
of Discipleship. St Luke gives these sayings in a simpler and more 
direct form, and has only four instead of eight, omitting the Meek, 
Merciful, Pure in Heart, Peacemakers. It is almost impossible to 
believe that our Evangelist had the full form before him, and 
deliberately extruded these qualities so congenial to him. But 
if St Matthew has collected and grouped his Beatitudes he has done 
it in a most masterly way, producing a perfect portrait of the 
Saviour s life and character from the self -emptying of the Incarna 
tion (Mat v 3) to the Crucifixion (Mat v 10, 11) as summarized in 
Phil ii 5-11. 

L. 6 

82 ST LUKE [VI 20-22 

20 And he lifted up his eyes on his disciples, and said, 
Blessed are ye poor : for yours is the kingdom of God. 
21 Blessed are ye that hunger now : for ye shall be filled. 
Blessed are ye that weep now : for ye shall laugh. 22 Blessed 
are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate 
you from their company, and reproach you, and cast out your 
name as evil, for the Son of man s sake. 23 Rejoice in that 
day, and leap for joy : for behold, your reward is great in 
heaven : for in the same manner did their fathers unto the 

20. lifted up his eyes on his disciples. One of St Luke s 
graphic touches. This discourse, like Matthew s Sermon on the 
Mount , was addressed not to the crowd but to disciples. On its 
bearing upon the training of the Apostles see Latham, Pastor 
Pastorum, pp. 252 sqq. 

ye poor : (see last note) not poverty as such though poverty 
itself may make people more ready to receive help but Apostolic 
poverty wins the blessing. St Matthew spiritualizes poor in spirit. 
The two are ideally combined in Christ s little poor man 
St Francis of Assisi, the type of those in whom the sense of utter 
dependence upon God issues in extreme simplification of the 
outward life. 

The marriage of St Francis with Poverty is classically 
described in Dante s enthusiastic lines, Par. xi 58 sqq. 

With this blessing upon poverty may be compared xiv 33 with 
its stern call to renunciation, and xviii 24-30, the teaching that 
follows the incident of the Rich Ruler. That literal renunciation 
of all possessions was not demanded of all may be inferred from 
the fact that our Lord accepted those wealthy ladies who 
ministered to him of their substance (viii 2), and Zacchaeus, who 
gave but half of his goods to the poor (xix 8). 

There is a saying in Pirke Aboth cited from Rabbi Jonathan : 
Whosoever fulfils the law (when) in poverty, will in the end fulfil 
it in wealth ; and whosoever neglects it in wealth (cf . below, v. 25) 
will in the end neglect it in poverty (Oesterley, Sayings, rv ii, p. 2). 

21. ye that hunger : St Matthew spiritualizes hunger and 
thirst after righteousness. 

that weep now : so St Matthew, that mourn. 

shall laugh. It is remarkable that this word (ycXaw) occurs in 
the N.T. only here and in v. 25. Is it a token of that sunny and 
genial temperament which has encouraged some to speak of 
St Luke the Humorist ? See note on xi 5-8. As here, so in 
v. 23, St Luke s expression is more intense than St Matthew s. 

22. separate you : this reference to Jewish excommunication 
is peculiar to St Luke ; in Jn xvi 2 it is described as banishing 

VI 23-26] ST LUKE 83 

a man from the synagogue (dTnxrwaywyov Troieiv) ; cf . Jn ix 22, lii 42. 
On the Synagogue s jurisdiction see Edersheim, L. and T. i 438 sqq. 
for the Son of man s sake. Here again is emphasized the 
differentia which makes the afflicted blessed not mere poverty, 
destitution, sorrow, unpopularity, but these in Christ s followers 
and for Christ s sake. 

23. leap for joy. A remarkable expression characteristic of 
the joyous Gospel (cf. note on v. 21 and Introduction, Charac 
teristics, p. xxxix). St Luke had employed the same word in i 44 
at the salutation of Elisabeth by the Blessed Virgin. 

24-26. THE CORRESPONDING WOES. These have no place in 
St Matthew, and St Luke may have drawn them from a source 
other than Q ; Sir John Hawkins, however (Oxf. Stud. , p. 134) , suggests 
that Matthew may have omitted them as liable to be misunderstood 
by the readers he had in view ; though Matthew certainly in his 
chapter xxiii witnesses to equal severity in our Lord. In any case 
they are, in a manner, implied by the Beatitudes, which deliberately 
reject the path of worldly ease, material wealth, earthly ambition 
and success as not being avenues to blessedness. 

24 But woe unto you that are rich ! for ye have received 
your consolation. 25 Woe unto you, ye that are full now ! 
for ye shall hunger. Woe unto you, ye that laugh now ! for 
ye shall mourn and weep. 26 Woe unto you, when all men 
shall speak well of you ! for in the same manner did their 
fathers to the false prophets. 

24. woe unto you that are rich ! This is lamentation, not 
merely denunciation (Adeney, ad loc.). St Luke, like his Lord 
(xviii 18 sqq.), has a sympathetic interest in the rich as well as in 
the poor (cf. viii 2, xix 2). The Rich Fool (xii 16 sqq.) gives 
a vivid picture of this Woe. 

ye have received (curi-^Tf.) : have received to the full (the technical 
expression in the xoivr) for signing a receipt (Moulton and 
Milligan, s.v.) there is no further reserve of consolation stored up 
for you. The same word describes in Mat vi 2, 5, 16 the case of 
those who do their religious exercises to be seen of men as though 
a man should give his money to charity with apparent generosity, 
but really with a view to a baronetcy. 

26. shall speak well of you ! This warning of the danger of general 
popularity (which blinds the eyes to spiritual values and divine 
ideals) is peculiar to the third Gospel. In Jn v 44 our Lord expresses 
this truth concretely when He exclaims, of the self-centred mutual 
admiration society of the Pharisees, How can ye believe, which 
receive glory one of another, and the glory that cometh from the 
only God ye seek not ! The converse is given in Jn xv 19, xvii 
14, where faithfulness to Christ calls down the hatred of the world. 

84 ST LUKE [VI 26-29 

to the false prophets : cf. Jer v 31, The prophets prophesy 
falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means ; and my people 
love to have it so. 

(/3) 27-38. THE NEW COMMANDMENT OF LOVE ; contrasted 
with the prevailing spirit of selfishness. This corresponds in general 
to St Matthew s contrast of the Law and the Gospel ; It was said 
to them of old time . . . but I say unto you ; and in particular to 
Mat v 43, 44. St Luke expands, and has a different arrangement 
of the thoughts that follow. 

27 But I say unto you which hear, Love your enemies, 
do good to them that hate you, 28 bless them that curse you, 
pray for them that despitefully use you. 29 To him that 
smiteth thee on the one cheek offer also the other ; and from 
him that taketh away thy cloke withhold not thy coat also. 
30 Give to every one that asketh thee ; and of him that 
taketh away thy goods ask them not again. 31 And as ye 
would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise. 

27. / say unto you which hear, i. e. to all who are listening, 
the multitude as well as the disciples (Latham, Pastor Pastorum, 
p. 257). 

do good . . . bless. This is peculiar to St Luke, and characteristic 
of him. 

29 sqq. Here the generous instinct and the attitude of non- 
resistance to evil are interwoven. The former (30a, 31 sqq., 35) 
needs no apology, though indiscriminate charity (under present 
social conditions) supplies its own condemnation in the demoraliza 
tion of the recipients ; and the gift that involves more thought, 
inquiry, and self-restraint is a higher gift. The principle of non- 
resistance (29, 30b) is easily misapplied ; and, if practised literally 
by all the more conscientious, might swiftly reduce society to 
a state of anarchy and violence, the prey of the predatory. 
Dr Plummer (ad loc.) is doubtless right in interpreting these 
paradoxes as rather illustrations of principles than actual precepts. 
Cf. Latham, Pastor Pastorum, p. 211. The interweaving of 
generosity and non-resistance teaches that Love and Longsuffering 
(a specialized form of love in contact with evil) are to be the 
principle of Christian conduct. Love has no limits but those that 
love itself imposes. Private retaliation, resentment of individual 
loss, are no justification for such forceful resistance as the well- 
being of society may demand of its loyal members. 

The question remains, however, as to the limits in practice of 
application of this principle of non-resistance, and a variety of 
opinions is inevitable, as was demonstrated in the phenomenon 
of Conscientious Objection in the Great War. It may be that 

VI 29-35] ST LUKE 85 

general lack of faith reduces the victorious energy of this principle 
of non-resistance to its present narrow dimensions. The experience, 
e.g., of early Quaker communities in dealing with the Red Indians 
(the only peaceful relations with white colonists being those with 
the professional non-resisters) points to the superiority of faith and 
charity over armed force in cases where they can be whole-heartedly 

29. smiteth : a strong phrase a pugilist s blow on the jaw. 

offer also : clearly a paradoxical statement, intended to arrest 
the hearers attention, and redress the balance of human self- 
assertiveness. Its obvious hyperbole throws light on the interpre 
tation of the entire context. Yet the extreme non-resister would 
argue from it a command to offer the cheek of his parents, his wife 
and children, and his fellow citizens in general. 

31. And as ye would, die. The Golden Rule, paralleled 
negatively by Hillel s saying, What thou thyself hatest, do to 
no man. Montefiore has an interesting comment, from the Jewish 
point of view, in The, Beginnings of Christianity, p. 79 : That 
Hillel s form of the Golden Rule is negative I do not think so 
important as Christian writers . . . always make out. That same 
Hillel said "Love mankind and bring them in to the Law." . . . 
Nevertheless ... I should be far from attempting to deny the 
original elements of the Gospel teaching. The summons ... to 
go forth and to seek out and redeem the sinner and the fallen, 
the passion to heal and bring back to God the wretched and the 
outcast all this I do not find in Rabbinism ; that form of love 
seems lacking. 

32-35. ON DISINTERESTED GIVING. This lesson is enforced in 
the teaching on hospitality, xiv 12-14. 

32 And if ye love them that love you, what thank have 
ye ? for even sinners love those that love them. 33 And if 
ye do good to them that do good to you, what thank have ye ? 
for even sinners do the same. 34 And if ye lend to them of 
whom ye hope to receive, what thank have ye ? even sinners 
lend to sinners, to receive again as much. 35 But love your 
enemies, and do them good, and lend, J never despairing ; and 
your reward shall be great, and ye shall be sons of the Most 
High : for he is kind toward the unthankful and evil. 

1 Some ancient authorities read despairing of no man. 

35. never despairing (/^Sev aTrfXiri^ovr^} : so R.V. (margin, 
despairing of no man). The A.V. had hoping for nothing again, 
implying a condemnation of interest on loans. This verb may be 
taken as one of St Luke s medical words. Hobart (p. 118) shows 
that Galen frequently uses it of a medically desperate case. 

86 ST LUKE [VI 35-43 

St Paul has a striking parallel in 1 Cor xiii 7, where he says that 
Love believeth all things, hopeth (eA7ri ci) all things. So the true 
interpretation of this verse suggests a patient and persevering help 
of apparently hopeless cases. 

36 Be ye merciful, even as your Father is merciful. 37 And 
judge not, and ye shall not be judged : and condemn not, and 
ye shall not be condemned : release, and ye shall be released : 
38 give, and it shall be given unto you ; good measure, 
pressed down, shaken together, running over, shall they give 
into your bosom. For with what measure ye mete it shall be 
measured to you again. 

36. even as your Father is merciful. Matthew has perfect 
(reXos, v 48). Moffatt (I.L.N.T., p. 281) finds here an echo of 
St Paul s beautiful words in 2 Cor i 3 sq. about comforting others 
with the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. 

37. Teaching against censoriousness a peculiarly poisonous 
form of uncharity given more fully in Mat vii 1-5, where it leads 
up to the mote and the beam of v. 41. 

38. A similar thought appears in 2 Cor ix 6-8. 

your bosom : cf . Ps Ixxix 12. The Eastern pocket was, and is, 
formed by drawing up a fold of the garment above the girdle. 
Thus Prov vi 27 pictures a man putting a hot ember into his bosom- 
pocket and setting his clothes on fire. 

LESSONS, with a special reference to sincerity. A number of short 
parabolic utterances : The Blind Guide, The Disciple and the 
Master, The Mote and the Beam, The Treasure of the Heart, The 
Two Foundations. In this section our Lord seems especially to 
have in mind the thought of His disciples as Teachers. 

39 And he spake also a parable unto them, Can the blind 
guide the blind ? shall they not both fall into a pit ? 40 The 
disciple is not above his 1 master : but every one when he is 
perfected shall be as his 1 master. 41 And why beholdest thou 
the mote that is in thy brother s eye, but considerest not the 
beam that is in thine own eye ? 42 Or how canst thou say 
to thy brother, Brother, let me cast out the mote that is in 
thine eye, when thou thyself beholdest not the beam that is 
in thine own eye ? Thou hypocrite, cast out first the beam 
out of thine own eye, and then shalt thou see clearly to cast 
out the mote that is in thy brother s eye. 43 For there is 

1 Or, teacher 

Tl 39-43] ST LUKE 87 

no good tree that bringeth forth corrupt fruit ; nor again 
a corrupt tree that bringeth forth good fruit. 44 For each 
tree is known by its own fruit. For of thorns men do not 
gather figs, nor of a bramble bush gather they grapes. 45 The 
good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth 
that which is good ; and the evil man out of the evil treasure 
bringeth forth that which is evil : for out of the abundance of 
the heart his mouth speaketh. 

39. Can the, blind guide, the blind ? St Matthew has not this 
in the Sermon on the Mount, but reproduces it in an altered 
form in Mat xv 14, where our Lord says to the disciples, of the 
Pharisees, Let them alone : they are blind guides. And if the 
blind, &c. Sir John Hawkins numbers it among the passages 
ascribable to Q with a considerable amount of probability 
(Oxf. Stud., p. 117). There are two other cases in St Luke s Sermon 
where Matthew has his parallel in another context, v. 41 = Mat 
x 24, and v. 45 = Mat xii 35, 34b. In these instances Canon 
Streeter (op. cit., pp. 157, 164) judges that Luke s context is the 
original one (cf. also W. C. Allen, op. cit., p. 268). 

But what more natural than that, if our Lord had originally 
uttered this saying here, He should pointedly refer to it later, in 
Matthew s context ? They are just an instance of what I said 
to you last year. What more apt illustration than the Pharisees ? 

40. the disciple is not above his master : his Rabbi or Teacher 
(SiSao-KaAos) : i. e. your disciples will not be able to reach a higher 
level than you set them. St Matthew (x 34) gives this in the charge to 
the Twelve, and with a slightly different application. There the 
double comparison is introduced Disciple and Teacher, Slave and 
Master. (See note on preceding verse.) 

when he is perfected : the finished pupil, perfectly equipped 

( Kari/pricr/Ae vos) . 

41. beam. Here again is an obvious hyperbole, throwing light 
on the interpretation of the whole passage. The beam referred to 
is the main beam of a roof Let criticism centre first on self is 
the teaching. Similarly the modern Montessori teaching, with its 
doctrine of self-education, claims that competition should be mainly 
centred on self. Aim at outstripping your past and your present self. 

42. hypocrite : classically, the word was applied to a professional 
actor. In Biblical Greek and hence in modern English it denotes 
one who plays a false part in life pretending to motives better 
than his actual ones. Such a one may of course be, in different 
degrees, self -deceived. 

43. For there is no good tree, <&c. ... In slightly different form 
Mat vii 16-20. The connexion here is not easy. What are the 
fruits ? Conduct, as the expression of character ? ( you must 

88 ST LUKE [VI 43-47 

see straight be sound morally before you can help ) ; or are 
the fruits the converts of the good disciple, the fruits of his disciple- 
ship ( an inferior Christian cannot by his action on others produce 
superior ones ) ? Cf. Latham, Pastor Pastorum, p. 259. 

44. each tree, i. e. each kind of tree. The verse is not simply 
a repetition of 43, but contains a new thought. (P. L.) 

45. The substance of this verse (see note on v. 39) appears in 
Matthew in a later context, and one of controversy with the 
Pharisees. Some have thought that St Luke, with his habitual 
avoidance of Pharisaic controversy (see Hawkins, Oxf. Stud., 
p. 70) has deliberately transplanted these sayings. But it may 
well be that Christ repeated them. 

the abundance of the heart. A man s outward expressions will 
mirror the preponderance of good or evil in him. St Matthew 
(xii 35, 34b) transposes the order of the clauses in this verse. 

46-49 : SANCTION TO FOREGOING TEACHING. The substance of 
vv. 47-49 occurs in an exactly parallel place in St Matthew, at the 
conclusion of his Sermon on the Mount (vii 24-27). 

46 And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things 
which I say ? 47 Every one that cometh unto me, and heareth 
my words, and doeth them, I will shew you to whom he is 
like : 48 he is like a man building a house, who digged and 
went deep, and laid a foundation upon the rock : and when 
a flood arose, the stream brake against that house, and could 
not shake it : 1 because it had been well builded. 49 But he 
that heareth, and doeth not, is like a man that built a house 
upon the earth without a foundation ; against which the 
stream brake, and straightway it fell in ; and the ruin of that 
house was great. 

1 Many ancient authorities read for it had been founded upon the rock : as in 
Mat vii 25. 

46. why call yz me, Lord, Lord . . . The parallel in Matthew 
is vii 21, 22, Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord . . . 
Compare also Lk xiii 25, Lord, open to us, and St Matthew s 
Ten Virgins (xxv 11, 12), Lord, Lord, open to us. 

47 sqq. There is an interesting variation in the form of this 
Parable of the Wise and Foolish Builders. In Matthew the main 
point is the selection of sites rock or sand here it is a question 
of foundations. But the teaching is the same ; ultimately character 
must be founded on Christ, on loyalty to His teaching. For the 
individual as for the Church, other foundation can no man lay 
(1 Coriii 11). 

VII i -io] ST LUKE 89 

VII 1 VIII 56 Third Period of Galilean Ministry : from 
the Great Sermon to the Mission of the Twelve 

This section contains two passages of purely Lucan matter 
(vii 11-17 and vii 36 viii 3), inserted into matter partly non- 
Marcan 1 but common to Matthew (vii 1-10, 18-25) and partly 
common to all three. In this latter portion (viii 16-56) Luke, 
while not preserving the Marcan order exactly, is much nearer to 
it than Matthew. 

(a) 1-10 The Centurion s Servant at Capernaum (cf . Trench, 
Mir., pp. 238, 245) 

VII After he had ended all his sayings in the ears of the 
people, he entered into Capernaum. 

2 And a certain centurion s Servant, who was 2 dear unto 
him, was sick and at the point of death. 3 And when he 
heard concerning Jesus, he sent unto him elders of the Jews, 
asking him that he would come and save his Servant. 4 And 
they, when they came to Jesus, besought him earnestly, 
saying, He is worthy that thou shouldest do this for him : 

5 for he loveth our nation, and himself built us our synagogue. 

6 And Jesus went with them. And when he was now not far 
from the house, the centurion sent friends to him, saying 
unto him, Lord, trouble not thyself : for I am not 3 worthy 
that thou shouldest come under my roof : 7 wherefore neither 
thought I myself worthy to come unto thee : but %ay the 
word, and my 5 servant shall be healed. 8 For I also am a man 
set under authority, having under myself soldiers : and I say 
to this one, Go, and he goeth ; and to another, Come, and he 
cometh ; and to my Servant, Do this, and he doeth it. 9 And 
when Jesus heard these things, he marvelled at him, and 
turned and said unto the multitude that followed him, I say 
unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel. 
10 And they that were sent, returning to the house, found the 
Servant whole. 

1 Gr. bondservant. 2 Or, precious to him Or, honourable with him 

3 Gr. sufficient. 4 Gr. say with a word. 6 Or, boy 

1. A connecting link between the Sermon and the incident 
following ; the chapters might well have been divided after this 

1 The interpolation into Marcan frame work = vii 11 viii 15. 

90 ST LUKE [VII 2-1 1 

verse (see R.V.). St Matthew places here the healing of the Leper, 
which St Luke, following the Marcan order, narrated much earlier 
(v 12-16). 

2. centurion s servant. The slave of a non-commissioned 
officer probably in the army of Herod Antipas, which would be 
modelled on the Roman. He is evidently a Gentile (v. 5). From the 
reference to this centurion, the one at the Crucifixion (xxiii47), and 
the frequent references in Acts, we gam a uniformly favourable im 
pression of these officers. Polybius (vi 249) states that the best men 
in the army were promoted to this rank. (Plummer on xxiii 47.) 

who was dear unto him. A slave (SovAos) to whom the man in 
his pleading (v. 7) applies the tenderer name TTCUS ( my boy ). 
There is at first sight a temptation to identify this miracle with that 
of the Nobleman s Son, Jn iv 47-54. It would then be a tacit 
correction of the tradition by the fourth Evangelist. But though 
the scene is the same, and the miracle of a cure at a distance, 
there are not a few distinctive features in each. Here it is not 
a Son but one cherished as a son a trait which reminds us of 
Naaman s relation to his slaves in the Old Testament (2 Kgs v). 

3. Principal citizens of Capernaum, and clearly Jews (v. 5). In 
Jn iv the man comes himself, as also in Mat viii 5. Here he is too 
modest (v. 7) to appear in person. Luke s account is probably more 
accurate than Matthew s (cf. Trench, Mir., p. 238). 

5. built us our synagogue. The ruins of a sumptuous building 
at Tell-Hum used to be conjecturally identified with those of the 
Synagogue in question. For the identification of Capernaum see 
note on iv 31. 

6. trouble not thyself : in Jn iv, the cure at a distance takes 
place because the news comes that the child is dead while Jesus is 
on the way. Here the Centurion himself takes the initiative, while 
the boy is still alive. 

7. say the word. Scores of Jews had pressed to touch Him for 
healing ; here is the cause of the marvelling of v. 9 (a remarkable 
testimony to our Lord s real humanity) ; a Gentile, arguing from 
the visible results of his own military authority, is first to believe 
and be sure that here was spiritual authority that could heal at 
a distance. 

(b) 11-17 The Widow s Son at Nain (cf. Trench, Mir., 
pp. 256-612) 

Peculiar to St Luke. The consolation of the Widow is character 
istic of this Gospel of Womanhood. Our Gospel records two out 
of the three recorded raisings of the dead, this and Jairus s daughter 
(viii 41 sqq.) ; the third is the raising of Lazarus, only in Jn xi. 
This forms the link between the other two ; thus (a) Jairus s daughter, 
12 years old, raised from her death-bed ; (b) Widow s son, a young 
man, raised from bier on way to burial ; (c) Lazarus, middle-aged, 
raised from tomb four days after death. Other raisings are alluded 
to (e. g. v. 22) but not specified. 

Yiin-iS] ST LUKE 91 

11 And it came to pass ^oon afterwards, that he went to 
a city called Nain ; and his disciples went with him, and a 
great multitude. 12 Now when he drew near to the gate of 
the city, behold, there was carried out one that was dead, 
the only son of his mother, and she was a widow : and much 
people of the city was with her. 13 And when the Lord saw 
her, he had compassion on her, and said unto her, Weep not. 

14 And he came nigh and touched the bier : and the bearers 
stood still. And he said, Young man, I say unto thee, Arise. 

15 And he that was dead sat up, and began to speak. And 
he gave him to his mother. 16 And fear took hold on all : 
and they glorified God, saying, A great prophet is arisen 
among us : and, God hath visited his people. 17 And this 
report went forth concerning him in the whole of Judaea, 
and all the region round about. 

1 Many ancient authorities read on the next day. 

11. Nain : about a day s journey from Capernaum, and eight 
miles S. of Nazareth. Adeney (ad loc.) points out that it is within 
half an hour of Shunem, the scene of Elisha s miracle (2 Kgs iv 36). 

13. the Lord (6 KV/HO?). This title is only applied to Christ 
before the Resurrection by St Luke (cf. x 1, xi 39, xii 42, xiii 15, 
xvii 5 sq., xxii 61) and St John (iv 1, vi 23, xi 2). Some regard it 
as evidence of a late date, but it need not necessarily be so. 

15. sat up on the open bier or stretcher and began to speak. 
An immediate cure. Details interesting to a physician. The word 
sat up (avfxdQiarev) is a medical word (Hobart, p. 11) used only 
twice in N.T. and by St Luke here and in Ac ix 40. 

16. glorified God. St Luke delights to record these moments 
of pious enthusiasm ; cf . v 26 note, xiii 17. 

17. Judcea : if not Judaea proper, at any rate including it 
(cf. iv 44). So John and his disciples in the south would hear of it. 

(c) 18-35 The Message of John and the subsequent Discourse 

Here we reach what has been regarded (Streeter, Oxf. Stud., 
pp.212sqq.) as one of the three principal themes of Q : (a) Relation 
of Christ s Teaching to that of John the Baptist. The other two are : 
(6) its relation to the Pharisaic Teaching (on which Matthew lays much 
greater emphasis ; but see v 17 sqq., xi 37 sqq., xii 1 sq., xiv 1 sqq., 
xvi 14, xviii 9), and (c) the question (partly met in the story of the 
Temptation see note on iv 1-13, p. 53), why, if He were the Messiah, 
His guise was so far from that of power and glory. St Matthew 
(cf . Hawkins, op. cit.,pp. 151, 152) has placed this incident later, after 
the Mission of the Twelve, perhaps so as to be able to give previous 

92 ST LUKE [VII 18-20 

examples of each of the items mentioned in the message sent back 
to John (Mat xi 4, 5) ; St Luke introduces that message (v. 21) in 
a way that renders such transposition unnecessary. 


18 And the disciples of John told him of all these things. 
19 And John calling unto him Hwo of his disciples sent them 
to the Lord, saying, Art thou he that cometh, or look we 
for another ? 20 And when the men were come unto him, 
they said, John the Baptist hath sent us unto thee, saying, 
Art thou he that cometh, or look we for another ? 21 In that 
hour he cured many of diseases and 2 plagues and evil spirits ; 
and on many that were blind he bestowed sight. 22 And he 
answered and said unto them, Go your way, and tell John 
what things ye have seen and heard ; the blind receive their 
sight, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, and the deaf 
hear, the dead are raised up, the poor have 3 good tidings 
preached to them. 23 And blessed is he, whosoever shall 
find none occasion of stumbling in me. 

1 Gr. certain two. 2 Gr. scourges. 3 Or, the gospel 

18. John was now in prison (Lk iii 20 ; Mat xi 2) in the Castle 
of Machaerus on the NE. shore of the Dead Sea, into which, says 
Josephus (Ant. XVIII v 2), Herod cast him for fear his influence 
should lead to an insurrection. 

19. Art thou he that cometh ? The Coming One, announced 
as such by John himself (iii 16) is, of course, the Messiah. The 
title is taken up by the enthusiastic crowds on Palm Sunday, 
Blessed is the King that cometh in the name of the Lord (cf . xiii 35) . 

20. John the Baptist hath sent us unto thee. What is the meaning 
and motive of the Baptist s question ? It may have been, in part, 
to strengthen the faith of the disciples sent (Chrysostom, &c.) ; 
but the fact that our Lord directs His answer to John Himself 
(v. 22) suggests that there was a personal motive. Was his faith 
failing ? Not fundamentally, else he would not have addressed 
the question to Jesus. There is a kind of analogy with the central 
word from the Cross, where the My God virtually contradicts 
the bare literal signification of the forsaken. 

But he may, during long months of imprisonment, have felt 
a growing impatience that the Coming One had not declared 
Himself more decisively in the terms of iii 16, 17, and realizing that 
this impatience bade fair to undermine his faith, have sent his 
embassy for assurance. Imprisonment (which has such strange 
psychological effects) may even have suggested that his own past, 
and his convinced message, and its climax in the scene of the 

VII 2o-2 7 ] ST LUKE 93 

Baptism (iii 21, 22) were an illusion, a dream. We cannot interpret 
it as- an utter failing of faith, and we need not predict a definite 
intention to force the Lord s hand, such as some have seen behind 
Judas s betrayal (xxii 3-6). 

21. In that hour, &c. : this touch is peculiar to St Luke (cf . Pre 
liminary Note on this Section). It covers the message of v. 22 
except for two items ; (a) the raising of the dead, and (6) the 
preaching of the Gospel to the poor. These the Evangelist has 
already emphasized (vii 11 sqq., iv 18, 43). The significance of our 
Lord s action has a modern appeal, for He is teaching John s 
disciples by the Direct Method. 

bestowed. The word (exapto-aTo) is characteristic of this 
Gospel of grace. Its root is the same as that of the two words of 
Gabriel s salutation, Xcupe, Kexapmo/xeVr? (i 28), and recurs in the 
brief notice of Christ s gracious boyhood (ii 40), and the reference 
to the gracious words of His preaching at Nazareth (iv 22). 
Here this magnificum verbum, as Bengel calls it, speaks of a Royal 

22. the poor have good tidings preached to them. This is the 
climax of the list of evidences of Messiahship in both accounts 
(cf. Mat xi 5). So, as St Luke has reminded us (iv 18), is it the 
primary element in Deutero-Isaiah s great Messianic proclamation 
(Is Ixi 1, 2). The Evangelist has also emphasized it from the first, 
in the atmosphere of the Gospel of the Infancy (chs i and ii), and 
specifically in i 52, 53, ii 10 sqq. (cf. vi 20). 

23. blessed is he : a pointed reference to John implying some 
thing of failure, and auguring success in overcoming the insidious 
temptation to offence. N.B. Our Lord could not say point-blank 
that He was the Messiah without letting loose all the divers 
erroneous imaginations which hovered round the name. Latham, 
Pastor Pastorum, pp. 263, 264. 

Probably from Q. Matthew and Luke reproduce this discourse 
with merely verbal variations, except that Luke has not here 
Mat xi 12-15 (the bulk of it, differently arranged, is in Lk xvi 16, 
cf. i 17) and Matthew has not Lk vii 29, 30. 

24 And when the messengers of John were departed, he 

began to say unto the multitudes concerning John, What went 

ye out into the wilderness to behold ? a reed shaken with the 

wind ? 25 But what went ye out to see ? a man clothed in 

soft raiment ? Behold, they which are gorgeously apparelled, 

and live delicately, are in kings courts. 26 But what went 

ye out to see ? a prophet ? Yea, I say unto you, and much 

more than a prophet. 27 This is he of whom it is written, 

Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, 

Who shall prepare thy way before thee. 

94 ST LUKE [vn 24-28 

28 I say unto you, Among them that are born of women 
there is none greater than John : yet he that is 1 but little in 
the kingdom of God is greater than he. 29 And all the people 
when they heard, and the publicans, justified God, 2 being 
baptized with the baptism of John. 30 But the Pharisees and 
the lawyers rejected for themselves the counsel of God, 3 being 
not baptized of him. 

1 Gr. lesser. 2 Or, having been 3 Or, not having been 

24. he began to say unto the multitudes concerning John. The 
answering message, meant for John s ears, but overheard by the 
crowd, was liable to misinterpretation by them. Christ has a 
chivalrous desire to remove from their minds any unjust suspicion. 
John s embassy was also a challenge to make clear the true relations 
between Him and His forerunner. The authority of the Baptist 
was still a subject of discussion at the end of our Lord s Ministry 
(xx 3 sqq.). 

a reed shaken with the wind ? There were plenty of these to 
be seen on the banks of Jordan ; but the object of your pilgrimage 
the stern, strong figure of the ascetic preacher was the very 
antithesis of this. It recalls the thrill of those stirring days ; and 
rebuts the implied misinterpretation of John s recent embassy. 
John is no weak vacillator. 

25. soft raiment. Luke has not specified in ch iii the camel s 
hair and leathern girdle and ascetic diet described by Mat iii 4 and 
Mk i 6 ; but he had earlier emphasized that asceticism both in 
prediction (i 15) and in narrative (i 80). But Mk i 6 seems almost 
to underlie the phraseology of this passage. 

gorgeously apparelled . . . live delicately : picturesque phraseology 
peculiar to St Luke. Matthew simply repeats the soft raiment. 

26. Yea . . . and much more than a prophet. St John is a prophet 
the last of the Old Dispensation. As such he holds a unique 
position. But his office is twofold, to sum up the Old and herald 
the New ; and this is something more. 

27. before thy face. A thoroughly Hebraic expression, which 
recurs in Lk ix 52. It is remarkable and puzzling that both Matthew 
and Luke insert this clause, which is contained in no known version 
of Mai iii 1 ; less remarkable, however, if they are both quoting 
from Q. The explanation of Plummer (ad loc.) is probably correct. 
Q represents an independent Greek form of a common-place of 
Messianic prophecy, stereotyped . . . before the Evangelists made 
use of it. 

28. he that is but little : lit. lesser, as R.V. marg. ; i.e. either 
less than John, or less than other members of the kingdom. 
On the plane of history John holds a place second to none ; but, 
regarded as outside the Kingdom of God, he will be inferior in 

VII 28-34] ST LUKE 95 

status and privilege to its humbler members. No judgement, of 
course, on the ultimate spiritual status of John will be here intended. 
Dante s instinct is doubtless right when he places that great John, 
who, ever holy, endured the desert and the martyrdom - 

quel . . gran Giovanni 
che, sempre santo, il diserto e il martiro 

among Christian souls, in the White Rose of Paradise (Par. xxxii 31) ; 
while, in deference to this passage perhaps, he gives him two 
preliminary years in the Inferno/ pending the Harrowing of Hell. 

29-30. Surely (against Dr Plummer) a parenthesis of St Luke s ? 
St Matthew has, however, four verses put into the mouth of Christ 
(Mat xi 12-15 ; cf. note on 24-30). If we accept the two verses as 
the Evangelist s, the And the Lord said of A.V. at the opening 
of verse 31, though lacking in MS authority as part of the original 
text, will be an early and intelligent gloss, calling attention to the 
close of the parenthesis. Sir John Hawkins, who thinks these 
verses hardly Kkely to have been in Q (Oxf. Stud., p. 118), following 
Meyer, regards them as parallel to Mat xxi 31b, 32. Meyer s con 
tention (ib., p. 302) was that Matthew s go before you into the 
Kingdom of God and Luke s justified the counsel of God were 
independent renderings of a single Aramaic original. St Matthew s 
reference is certainly a substantial parallel. Another obvious parallel 
lies in Lk xx 3-7, of which this is, in some sense, an anticipation. 

plaint on the one hand of John s asceticism and on the other of the 
opposite trait in Jesus. 

31 Whereunto then shall I liken the men of this generation, 
and to what are they like ? 32 They are like unto children 
that sit in the marketplace, and call one to another ; which 
say, We piped unto you, and ye did not dance ; we wailed, 
and ye did not weep. 33 For John the Baptist is come eating 
no bread nor drinking wine ; and ye say, He hath a 1 devil. 
34 The Son of man is come eating and drinking ; and ye say, 
Behold, a gluttonous man, and a winebibber, a friend of 
publicans and sinners ! 35 And wisdom 2 is justified of all her 

1 Gr. demon. 2 Or, was 

31. Whereunto then shall I liken . . . ? A usual Rabbinical 
formula of the time. 

32. like unto children. The double tradition here testifies 
to that love of children which was a marked trait of our Lord 
(cf. ix 47, xviii 15 sqq.). He watches them at their games, and 

96 ST LUKE [vn 34-36 

draws lessons therefrom as He does from the wild flowers and the 

that sit in the marketplace,. In the presence of the ascetic John, 
they are anxious to play at weddings and pipe dance-music ; 
when confronted with the joyous message of Christ, and His dis 
regard of ascetic formalities (cf. v 33 sqq.), they are all for funerals 
and the attendant wailing. John will not feast he is possessed- 
Jesus does not fast ceremonially, and is often dining out He 
has thrown in His lot with the social outcasts ! 

35. justified of all her children : St Matthew (xi 19b) has by her 
works. The saying evidently concluded the episode in Q. The 
children of Wisdom (Heb. for the Wise ) will be the minority 
who have accepted both John and Jesus. 

(d) 36-50 The Pharisee and the Penitent Woman 

This section is one of the most characteristic of the third Gospel 
(cf. x 29-37) alike in form and substance. Its style and phraseology 
is so intensely Lucan that it is one of four passages set apart by 
Dr Stanton as obviously not drawn from a written source but told 
in the Evangelist s own words (Gospels as Hist. Doc. ii 229). 
It aptly illustrates the preceding verse ; showing the grounds on 
which the two popular taunts were respectively based. 

36 And one of the Pharisees desired him that he would 
eat with him. And he entered into the Pharisee s house, and 
sat down to meat. 37 And behold, a woman which was in 
the city, a sinner ; and when she knew that he was sitting 
at meat in the Pharisee s house, she brought J an alabaster 
cruse of ointment, 38 and standing behind at his feet, weeping, 
she began to wet his feet with her tears, and wiped them with 
the hair of her head, and 2 kissed his feet, and anointed them 
with the ointment. 39 Now when the Pharisee which had 
bidden him saw it, he spake within himself, saying, This man, 
if he were 3 a prophet, would have perceived who and what 
manner of woman this is which toucheth him, that she is a 
sinner. 40 And Jesus answering said unto him, Simon, I have 
somewhat to say unto thee. And he saith, 4 Master, say on. 

1 Or, a flask z Gr. kissed much. 

3 Some ancient authorities read the prophet. See Jn i 21, 25. 

4 Or, Teacher 

36. one of the Pharisees, &c. St Luke s is the Gospel of Hospi 
tality. He alone records invitations from Pharisees, and three of 
them : here and in xi 37 and xiv 1-6, which last introduces a whole 

vii 36-38] ST LUKE 97 

section on Earthly and Heavenly Feasts. And it is in his Gospel 
again that we find the narrative (xix 5 sqq.) of our Lord s self- 
invitation to be the guest of Zacchaeus. The Son of man is come 
eating and drinking. 

37. a woman ... a sinner. She has been falsely identified by 
tradition (a) with St Mary Magdalene (viii 2) ; but the sevenfold 
possession, imptying paroxysms of mania, would be incompatible 
with the life suggested here that of a courtesan. Also St Luke 
would have no motive in concealing her name here, and mentioning 
it, without note of identification, on the next page. (6) This com 
posite Magdalen-Courtesan has been identified with Mary sister of 
Martha and Lazarus whom St John (xii 3, 4) describes as perform 
ing a very similar ministration at a feast which Mt xxvi 6 and 
Mk xiv 3 characterize as held in the house of Simon the Leper. 
The second identification would seem inconceivable in the light of 
St Luke s own portraiture of Mary of Bethany (x 38 sqq. ; cf. Jn xi). 
The two Simons may well be different the name, like Mary, was so 
common and the second act of ministration may have been 
suggested by the first. In any case we may be sure that for history 
this unnamed sinner, and Mary Magdalene, and Mary of Bethany 
are three separate persons ; though for Art they will probably 
remain one ! The Magdalen has, from the days of Taddeo Gaddi, 
the alabaster box as her inalienable symbol ; and is constantly 
depicted therewith in the four scenes (1) at this Feast in the 
Pharisee s house, (2) weeping at the foot of the Cross, (3) watching 
at the sepulchre, (4) meeting the Lord on Easter morning. 

Of this particular scene there are notable representations at two 
ends of the artistic scale from the simplicity of Taddeo Gaddi s 
in the Rinuccini Chapel at Florence to the rich complexity and 
vast-ness of Veronese s representation in the Royal Gallery at 
Turin, and so to the over-dramatic treatment of Rubens. (See 
Jameson, Sacred and Legendary Art : St Mary Magdalen, third 
edn., Houghton & Mifflin, Boston and New York, 1857, vol. i, 
pp. 384 sqq.) 

Here is the friend of publicans and sinners irresistibly attract 
ing a social waif through the open door into the guest-chamber of 
a Pharisee s house. 

the city : probably Capernaum. 

an alabaster cruse of ointment : such as women habitually carried 
with them, hung by a cord round the neck. 

38. and standing behind, cfcc. He sits or reclines with his bare 
feet behind Him and she comes furtively behind, irresistibly drawn 
to do Him honour by anointing those feet. When the moment 
arrives, overcome by emotion, she anoints them with tears instead, 
and before she can fulfil her original intention must needs face 
open disgrace by letting down her hair and wiping them therewith. 
Once more, before the anointing she impulsively and passionately 
kisses His feet (xaTt^tXet) ; the word used only in the Gospels 

98 ST LUKE [VII 39-42 

of the Prodigal s father (xv 20) and of the demonstrative kiss of 
Judas in Matthew and Mark. 

39. The Pharisee who had doubtless shared the general 
astonishment ( Behold ! v. 37) is now shocked to find his guest 
submitting to these defiling caresses. 

if he were a prophet : it was, then, as a possible prophet that 
Simon invited Him not with malignant intent. So, in verse 47 
He alludes to His host not as an enemy, but as one who loveth 

The Vatican MS (B) has the Prophet of Deut xviii 15, title 
refused by the Baptist (Jn i 21) when questioned by the Jewish 
envoys, and applied to our Lord (Jn vii 40) by the crowd at the 
Feast of Tabernacles. 

toucheth him : better, clings to him. 

40. Jesus answering said : Simon inwardly accused Him of 
inability to read the woman s character ; He replies by showing 
that He can read Simon s own thoughts (cf. v 22). 

Master. The Pharisee, though shocked, and perhaps a little 
contemptuous (cf. This man, v. 39), is still polite, and addresses 
his guest as Rabbi. 

41-42. THE PARABLE or THE Two DEBTORS. The regular 
parabolic teaching begins at ch viii 4, and St Luke s contribution 
to this is concentrated mainly in chs x 30 xviii 14. (See note 
on viii 4.) The value of the penny denarius (a silver coin worth 
about a modern franc or lira, but with greater normal purchasing 
power) is irrelevant the point is that the one forgiven debt was 
ten times as great as the other, and realized as such, and that the 
grateful love given was proportionate. (Cf. Trench, Notes on the 
Parables of our Lord, Kegan Paul, popular edn., 1886, p. 297.) 

he forgave here we have again the magnificum verbum of v. 21 
(see note there) ; the obvious spiritual analogue the free grace 
of forgiveness to penitent, impotent sinners fully justifies the 
royal word. 

41 A certain lender had two debtors : the one owed five 
hundred pence, and the other fifty. 42 When they had not 
wherewith to pay, he forgave them both. Which of them 
therefore will love him most ? 43 Simon answered and said, 
He, I suppose, to whom he forgave the most. And he said 
unto him, Thou hast rightly judged. 44 And turning to the 
woman, he said unto Simon, Seest thou this woman ? 
I entered into thine house, thou gavest me no water for my 
feet : but she hath wetted my feet with her tears, and wiped 
them with her hair. 45 Thou gavest me no kiss : but she, 

1 Se marginal note on Mat xviii 28. 

VII 43-so] ST LUKE 99 

since the time I came in, hath not ceased to ^iss my feet, 
46 My head with oil thou didst not anoint : but she hath 
anointed my feet with ointment. 47 Wherefore I say unto 
thee, Her sins, which are many, are forgiven ; for she loved 
much : but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little. 
48 And he said unto her, Thy sins are forgiven. 49 And they 
that sat at meat with him began to say 2 within themselves, 
Who is this that even forgiveth sins ? 50 And he said unto 
the woman, Thy faith hath saved thee ; go in peace. 

1 Gr. kiss much. a Or, among 

43. / suppose. Simon is not really interested, but politeness 
demands an answer, even if it be a somewhat supercilious one. In 
a moment his interest will be aroused to the utmost. 

44. turning to the woman : at once to welcome her mute appeal 
and to honour her in presence of the guests. Here the scene, already 
dramatic almost beyond expression, reaches its climax. 

/ entered into thine house, thou gavest me no water. The apparently 
unobservant and unconventional Guest now assumes the offensive, 
and convicts His host of threefold neglect in hospitality. 

Water for the feet, a kiss of welcome, and the customary anoint 
ing with olive oil all these commonest usages of the oriental host 
Simon had omitted. The woman a stranger, with no social 
responsibilities had in her love fulfilled and more than fulfilled 
them all. 

47, 48. First to Simon, as a declaration of fact, then to the 
penitent as an act of plenary absolution, He pronounces her sins 

for she loved much : she proved her great love by these acts ; 
that she was a great sinner is admitted ; but the love is a token of 
the forgiveness of her sins. The woman s faith (v. 50) in the Friend 
of sinners had drawn her to His feet, and there at once penitence 
and love had been consummated, and pardon won. His gracious 
words, Thy sins have been forgiven, are only the definite pro 
nouncement of that which had happened to her as soon as penitence 
flooded her heart and His feet or ever He turned His face. This 
seems to be the most satisfactory explanation of an admittedly 
difficult passage. Giovanni Papini (Storia di Cristo, pp. 327-340 
esp. 338) takes it that she had been definitely forgiven earlier, and 
now came in to thank Him. 

49. began to say within themselves : as some of them had done 
before, at the healing of the paralytic, v 21. 

50. he said unto the woman : as if to confirm His declaration, 
in opposition to the unspoken criticism of His fellow guests. 


100 ST LUKE tvm i, 2 

(e) VIII 1-3 The Ministering Women 

This is one of the four passages singled out by Dr Stanton as 
so full of Lucan characteristics that we cannot conceive it as derived 
from a written source. See note on x 29 (Gosp. as Hist. Doc. ii 229). 
It is of special interest both for the names which it records and 
for the light it throws on the financing of our Lord s Mission. On 
St Luke as the Evangelist of Womanhood, see A. T. Robertson, 
op. cit., pp. 237-238, and Introd., p. xli. 

VIII And it came to pass soon afterwards, that he went 
about through cities and villages, preaching and bringing the 
J good tidings of the kingdom of God, and with him the twelve, 
2 and certain women which had been healed of evil spirits 
and infirmities, Mary that was called Magdalene, from whom 
seven 2 devils had gone out, 3 and Joanna the wife of Chuza 
Herod s steward, and Susanna, and many others, which 
ministered unto ^hem of their substance. 

1 Or, gospel 2 Gr. demons. 3 Many ancient authorities read him. 

1. soon afterwards. This is one of St Luke s indefinite notes 
of time. He will not define where he has not the right to do so. 
See Introd., p. xxxvi and note on ix 51, p. 141. 

through cities and villages : cf . iv 44. The region is not named, 
but presumably it is Galilean, and may be identical with the 
Mission of Mk vi 6, which, though in the Marcan narrative it follows 
the Raising of Jairus s daughter, precedes the Mission of the Twelve. 
These extended preaching tours must have added enormously to 
the labour of the Ministry ; perhaps they would have been imprac 
ticable without the ministrations of v. 3. 

2. Mary that was called Magdalene, from whom seven devils had 
gone out. Her home was some place called Magdala (Heb. Migdol 
= watch-tower, of which there were many). It is now generally 
identified with the hamlet of Mejdel on the W. side of the Lake, 
exactly opposite the country of the Gergesenes (or Gerasenes, 
see on v. 26). Her extraordinarily violent demoniacal possession 
itself almost incompatible, as Plummer points out, with the 
miserable trade of prostitution, is referred to again in [Mk] xvi 9. 
It has been mystically interpreted of the Seven Deadly Sins. In 
fact, it was doubtless rather pathological than moral ; a terrible 
malady of brain and nerve. The only possible ground for the 
popular view is found if we regard her miserable plight as the 
outcome of a previous life of unchastity. The identification of 
Mary with the sinner of ch vii, on which the traditional con 
ception is based, is itself most unlikely (see note on vii 37), though 
the sinner may well be among the many others of v. 3. The 
identification has, however, been stereotyped by the devotional 

vm 3-s] ST LUKE 101 

books, and by the long line of Christian painters, who in their 
luscious portraiture of the converted courtesan are mostly at 
their worst. 

3. Joanna the ivife of Chuza. Blass (Philol. Oosp., pp. 152 sqq.), 
on the authority of a seventh-century [MS of the] Old Latin Version 
( 1 ) which reads Cydiae, suggests that Chuza must, like St Paul, 
have been known by two names, one for Jews and one for Gentiles. 
Godet conjectures that he is the /Jao-iAiKos or courtier of 
Jn iv 46-53, who himself believed and his whole house. 

In any case here is an obvious point of access for St Luke to 
the Herodian court, which, with the mention of Herod s foster- 
brother Manaen ( Menahem ) in Ac xiii 1, explains this Evangelist s 
more frequent mention of Herod s thoughts and doings : e. g. 
xiii 31, xxiii 8-12. For Joanna s presence at the Tomb, see xxiv 10. 

Susanna : only mentioned here. 

many others : among whom may have been, perhaps, the penitent 
of ch vii, and almost certainly Mary the mother of James and of 
Joses, and Salome, whom St Mark specifies (xv 40) as among those 
who, when he was in Galilee, followed him, and ministered unto 

ministered unto them of their substance. The importance of this 
notice is twofold : (a) it reveals to us how Christ and His disciples, 
many of whom had, temporarily at least, thrown up their means 
of livelihood, were supported in their wanderings (from the first, 
iv 3, Jesus had decided not to work miracles for His own support) ; 
and (6) it makes it clear that our Lord did not demand complete 
renunciation of worldly wealth on the part of all His followers 
(cf . Zacchaeus, xix 8). Adeney, who points out that it was common 
for Rabbis to be supported by wealthy ladies, characteristically 
and aptly speaks of these as prototypes of the Countess of Hunt 

(f ) 4-18 Teaching by Parables : The Sower ; The Lamp 

This is a block from Mk iv 1-25. 

On our Lord s Parabolic Teaching, see Archbishop Trench, 
Notes on the Parables ; Latham, Pastor Pastorum, ch x. Also 
Robertson, Luke the Historian, &c. (T. & T. Clark 1920), pp. 142- 

4 And when a great multitude came together, and they 
of every city resorted unto him, he spake by a parable : 

4. resorted unto him : fruits of His recent mission (viii 1). 
Matthew and Mark make it clear that the scene was the lake-side, 
and He was teaching from a boat. 

5-8. PARABLE OF THE SOWER. Trench, op. cit., pp. 63-85. 

102 ST LUKE [VIII 5-9 

Matthew (after his custom of grouping) follows this with a string 
of five parables (Mat xiii), Mark with the Lamp (as here), his 
own Seed growing secretly, and the Mustard seed. The latter 
(both Matthew and Mark) and the Leaven (Mat xiii 33) appear 
together later on in this Gospel (xiii 18-21). This is one of the 
three Parables recorded by all the Synoptists ; and one of the two 
of which we have our Lord s own explanation ; the other is the 
Tares/ which is not in St Luke. 

5 The sower went forth to sow his seed. : and as he sowed, 
some fell by the way side ; and it was trodden under foot, 
and the birds of the heaven devoured it. 6 And other fell 
on the rock ; and as soon as it grew, it withered away, because 
it had no moisture. 7 And other fell amidst the thorns ; and 
the thorns grew with it, and choked it. 8 And other fell into 
the good ground, and grew, and brought forth fruit a hundred 
fold. As he said these things, he cried, He that hath ears to 
hear, let him hear. 

5. The sower. Possibly He points to a sower casting his seed 
on the slopes above the Lake (Trench, op. cit., p. 66 and ref. there). 
If so, the date would be early in the year. The next possible chrono 
logical indication is the green grass mentioned by the other 
Synoptists at the Feeding of the Five Thousand (see on ix 14). 

For the sowing, Plummer quotes Stanley, Sinai and Palestine, 
p. 425. See also Edersheim, L. & T. i 58 sqq. 

6, 7. In these verses, which represent the Marcan sense fairly 
exactly, there are three words peculiar to St Luke ; viz. the words 
for grew (<Wv), moisture (l^dSa), and grew with it 
(o~ufji.<f>vcLcra.i), all of them conspicuously medical terms (Hobart, 
M.L., pp. 57-59). 

8. into the good ground : not beside it (-n-apd, v. 5) nor upon 
it (eVi, v. 6), but right into it (eis). 

a hundredfold. There is no mention (as in Matthew) of the 
different degrees of productiveness, which Luke reserves for the 
parable of the Pounds (xix 12 sqq.), while it is lacking in the parallel 
Matthaean parable of the Talents. St Luke is not giving here 
a picture of the Kingdom and its characteristics, but concentrat 
ing upon the Responsibility of the Hearer (cf. Westcott, Introd. 
to Study of Gospels, p. 376). 

he cried, He that hath ears, dsc. A penetrating call, appealing 
for attention and receptiveness. This impressive phrase, pro 
verbial in form, comes here in all three accounts. In a slightly 
shorter form it recurs in Lk xiv 35, after another group of parables 
and parabolic sayings. 


VIII io, ii] ST LUKE 103 

9 And his disciples asked him what this parable might be. 

10 And he said, Unto you it is given to know the mysteries 
of the kingdom of God : but to the rest in parables ; that 
seeing they may not see, and hearing they may not understand. 

11 Now the parable is this : The seed is the word of God. 

12 And those by the way side are they that have heard ; then 
cometh the devil, and taketh away the word from their heart, 
that they may not believe and be saved. 13 And those on 
the rock are they which, when they have heard, receive the 
word with joy ; and these have no root, which for a while 
believe, and in time of temptation fall away. 14 And that 
which fell among the thorns, these are they that have heard, 
and as they go on their way they are choked with cares and 
riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection. 
15 And that in the good ground, these are such as in an honest 
and good heart, having heard the word, hold it fast, and bring 
forth fruit with patience. 

10. but to the rest in parables. As hostility increases the parabolic 
method is more used, because it reveals only to those in sympathy 
and anxious to learn. Parables open the truth, says Plummer, 
and impress it on the minds of those ready to receive it ; but they 
do not instruct, though they may impress, the careless. Further, 
What the unsympathetic " hear without understanding " they 
remember because of its impressive form, and whenever their minds 
become fitted for it, its meaning will become manifest to them. 

One great purpose of these parables was doubtless to teach the 
Teachers (cf. Latham, loc. cit.) ; to prepare the Apostles to face 
disappointing results of their missionary work. The results 
depend on the hearer, and, as in the Parable of the Sower, may fail 
three times out of four. 

11. The seed is the word of God. In Matthew the seed is not 
named; in Mark it is the word. The phrase Word of God is 
common in Luke. See iii 2, v 1, viii 11, 21, xi 28, and twelve times 
in Acts. Here it means the Word which both comes from God and 
speaks of God. It would not, perhaps, be fanciful to identify it 
with Jesus Himself, after the manner of St John. This is the point 
of the whole Parable the effect of the same good seed on various 
soils the impact of God s Message of Christ Himself, on souls 
variously disposed. 

We see this in the following verses, in an ascending series : 
(a) the seed lost, v. 12 ; (6) quick sprouting, followed by withering, 
v. 13 ; (c) longer growth, but no mature fruit, v. 14 ; (d) the ideal, 
v. 15. 

104 ST LUKE [Vlll 12-18 

12. by the way side. Souls rendered callous because people 
have laid their hearts open to the common traffic of idle thoughts 
or evil habits (Adeney). 

that they may not believe and be saved. Mysterious words, 
especially as recorded by St Luke, the universalist. They may be 
interpreted in the light of v. 16. The Parables were a pillar of 
cloud and darkness to the Pharisees, but of fire and light to the 
disciples when their eyes were opened to see. They were a spiritual 
smoke-screen to shut of? those who were blaspheming. . . . Thus 
Jesus ... is able to go on with His teaching in an uncongenial 
atmosphere (Robertson, op. cit., p. 144). 

13. rock : better expressed by Matthew and Mark rocky 
ground a shallow layer of soil through which the rocks crop up 
to the surface here and there ; with no deepness of earth (Mat 
thew, Mark) into which roots can strike down so as to resist the 
sun s scorching. Shallow characters, with no stamina to resist 

receive the word with joy : enthusiastic but fickle. St Paul uses 
the phrase in a good sense, 1 Thess i 6. 

14. among the thorns : preoccupied souls. The thorns have been 
cut down but not uprooted, and grow faster and stronger than the 
corn, which is eventually screened from sun and rain and so choked 
by them. The cares of the poor, the riches of the capitalist, 
the pleasures of the self-indulgent, rich and poor alike. These 
are the materialistic preoccupations of civilized man in every age ; 
but never more so than to-day. 

15. honest and good heart. The phrase is difficult to translate 
satisfactorily ; perhaps good and true, or sound and good 
might come near it. The combination of adjectives (/<aAos Kal 
dya#o s) gives the Greek equivalent for our Gentleman in the 
best sense of the word. Luke, the cultured Gentile, alone phrases 
it thus. Cf. Robertson, op. cit., p. 58 ; Carpenter, op. cit., p. 190. 

hold it fast . . . with patience. Rather with perseverance. 
They have assimilated the message, tenaciously retain it, and 
perseveringly apply it in life. 

16-18. SYMBOLISM OF THE LAMP. This follows the Parable 
of the Sower also in Mark. Matthew distributes the sayings of 
these verses, Mat v 15, x 26, xiii 12. Luke regards them as among 
sayings which Christ repeated in different contexts (for v. 16 see 
xi 33 and for v. 17, xii 2). And it has been suggested that his 
variations from St Mark here are coloured by the remembrance 
of the language of such doublets (Dr V. Bartlet, Oxford Studies, 
p. 328. For the eleven doublets in this Gospel, see Hawkins, 
op. cit., p. 35, and Hor, Syn., pp. 99 sqq.). 

The connexion of these verses with one another and with what 
precedes is not very clear (cf. Streeter, Oxf. Studies, pp. 171 sqq.). 
Perhaps it is that the light which has been kindled by the Lord s 
interpretation of this Parable (in w. 9-15) must be exhibited by 

VIII i8-2o] ST LUKE 105 

the hearers for the good of all who enter in , i.e. are ready to 
receive it. They must not re-enact the tragedy of Judaism and 
treat stewardship of revelation as though it were an exclusive 
possession and privilege. 

16 And no man, when he hath lighted a lamp, covereth 
it with a vessel, or putteth it under a bed ; but putteth it on 
a stand, that they which enter in may see the light. 17 For 
nothing is hid, that shall not be made manifest ; nor anything 
secret, that shall not be known and come to light. 18 Take 
heed therefore how ye hear : for whosoever hath, to him shall 
be given ; and whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken 
away even that which he Hhinketh he hath. 

1 Or, seemeth to have 

18. Take heed therefore how ye hear. The responsibility of 
sharing with others has an antecedent condition receptivity 
and runs back into responsibility for assimilation. One truth 
follows upon grows out of another. Without the grounding, 
the full structure of education is impossible. 

even that which he thinketh. Eventually he will lose even his 
fool s paradise of imagined possession. 

(g) 19-21 The Mother and Brethren of Jesus 

St Matthew (xii 46-50), following Mk iii 31 sqq., places this in 
cident immediately before the Parable of the Sower. Here it precedes 
the story of the Storm on the Lake, which in Mark immediately 
follows the Parables. St Luke s order is apparently deliberate, and 
(if it be not that of Q ) must be the result of careful investigation. 
This also (see note on vv. 16-18) might almost be described as a 
doublet. At any rate, in xi 27 sqq. recurs the same lesson, viz. 
that the blessedness of the Lord s Mother is due not so much to her 
unique privilege as to her attitude towards God. 

19 And there came to him his mother and brethren, and 
they could not come at him for the crowd. 20 And it was told 
him, Thy mother and thy brethren stand without, desiring to 
see thee. 21 But he answered and said unto them, My mother 
and my brethren are these which hear the word of God, and 
do it. 

19. there, came to him. No doubt alarmed at His intense 
activities, and anxious to restrain Him ; desirous, perhaps, to 
obviate that very exhaustion of which v. 23 is an indication. 

20. Thy mother and thy brethren. For the Brethren of our 

106 ST LUKE [Vlil 20-22 

Lord, see J. B. Lightfoot, Dissertations on the Apostolic Age, pp. 3-45 
(Macmillan 1892), and articles in Hastings Diet. Bible, and Diet. 
Christ and Gosp. The controversy is ably summarized by G. H. Box, 
The Virgin Birth, pp. 236-238. 

The contemporary belief was evidently that they were the 
children of Joseph and Mary (Mk vi 3, Mat xiii 55) ; and though 
the same contemporary belief was wrong in assuming (Lk iv 22, 
Jn i 45) Jesus to be the son of Joseph, it is less likely to have been 
mistaken about so large a group. Firstborn in ii 7 does not of 
course foreclose the question (see note there) ; yet it is not too 
much to say that apart from theological prepossessions (right or 
wrong) in favour of the perpetual virginity of Mary, that interpre 
tation that they were children of our Lord s Mother and foster- 
father would never have been challenged. 

The two alternative theories make these Brethren : (a) 
children of Joseph by a former wife (Epiphanius). Surely this does 
not, as Plummer states, deprive Jesus of His Davidic heirship 
if Mary also (see note on iii 23) was of royal lineage ; (6) that they 
were children of a sister of Mary s, and so His cousins. Such would, 
in Hebrew parlance, be styled Brethren. 

21. are these which hear the word of God, &c. This involves no 
denial of the validity of family ties, or the duties springing therefrom, 
on the part of Him who was subject to Mary and Joseph for 
thirty years (Lk ii 51), and whose last word to man from the Cross 
was one of filial piety (Jn xix 26, 27). It is rather the assertion of 
a higher, spiritual relationship taking the family tie as type of the 
strongest bond, and applying it in a wider sphere. The family of 
God we may see in His Church, from membership of which neither 
male nor female, Jew nor Gentile, bond or free, is excluded ; all 
being joined not on a racial basis or one of earthly status, but by 
a common access to God and loyalty to Him. 

(h) 22-39 The Storm on the Lake ; The Gerasene Demoniac 

This complete section occurs in all three Synoptists. The 
position in Mark is practically the same as in Luke, though the 
former (Mk iv 36) says they took Him as He was in the boat after 
He had uttered the Parable of the Sower and those that followed. 
Matthew places it earlier, viii 23 sqq., before the parabolic teaching, 
and soon after the healing of Peter s mother-in-law. 

22-25. THE STORM ON THE LAKE OF GALILEE. The first of 
the Nature Miracles (if we except Jn ii 1-11) ; recorded by all 
three Synoptists (cf. Trench, Mir., pp. 152-160). 

22 Now it came to pass on one of those days, that he 
entered into a boat, himself and his disciples ; and he said 
unto them, Let us go over unto the other side of the lake : 

vni 22- 24 ] ST LUKE 107 

and they launched forth. 23 But as they sailed he fell asleep : 
and there came down a storm of wind on the lake ; and they 
were filling with water, and were in jeopardy. 24 And they 
came to him, and awoke him, saying, Master, master, we 
perish. And he awoke, and rebuked the wind and the raging 
of the water : and they ceased, and there was a calm. 
25 And he said unto them, Where is your faith ? And being 
afraid they marvelled, saying one to another, Who then is 
this, that he commandeth even the winds and the water, and 
they obey him ? 

22. the other side. The comparative solitude of the eastern shore. 

23. fell asleep : the sleep of weariness and exhaustion (cf . note 
on v. 19). The impact of the crowds of v. 4 must have added to the 
resultant strain of the tour of v. 1. This being compassed with 
infirmity (Heb v 2) is one of the gracious signs of His true humanity. 
Even so He sits by Jacob s well in the noonday heat, and asks the 
Samaritan woman for a drink of water (Jn iv 6, 7), and cries from 
the Cross I am thirsty ( Jn xix 28) . It is perhaps significant that this 
only reference to His sleeping is preserved by all three Synoptists. 

there came down : quite literally swooped from one of the 
funnel-like ravines that flank the Lake. They are noted as pecu 
liarly generative of such sudden squalls ; which are, however, 
a familiar feature of the Italian Lakes, and of some of our home- 
waters. Plummer adduces Thomson, Land and Book, p. 375. 

24. Master, master. The same word (eVto-Tara) which is put 
into St Peter s mouth at the miraculous draught of fishes, v 5, again 
when the woman touches Jesus in the crowd (viii 45), and at the 
Transfiguration (ix 33). Surely it is Peter s voice that the Evangelist 
hears above the rest on this occasion ? It may represent the 
Apostle s favourite form of address to His Master, either actually 
or in translation. (See on viii 45.) The only other apostolic mouth 
into which Luke puts it is that of St John (ix 49). Besides that, the 
only instance he gives is that of the Ten Lepers (xvii 13). The 
word supplies one side (the authoritative) of the connotation of the 
Rabbi (which Luke never employs), while his other word, 
SiSao-KctAos (vii 40, &c.) represents the teaching aspect. The 
duplication, though found twice in Matthew ( Lord, Lord, 
Mat vii 21, xxv 11), and again in St John ( Verily, verily, 
Jn v 19, 24, 25, &c.), and therefore doubtless a genuine echo of 
Christ s utterance, is specially characteristic of St Luke ( Lord, 
Lord, vi 46, Martha, Martha, x 41, Simon, Simon, xxii 31). 
Here it is almost inevitable the excitement, the babble of voices, 
the attempt to wake the sleeper. 1 Pet v 7, casting all your 
anxiety upon him, because he careth for you, may possibly be 
a reminiscence of this scene. 

108 ST LUKE tvm 24-26 

we perish. Mk iv 38, Carest thou not that we perish ? 
Mat viii 25, Save Lord; we perish. Typical instance of unim 
portant variations in a witness that fundamentally agrees ; cf . v. 25 
and notes on xxiv 1-12. 

rebuked. Mark gives the actual exclamation (iv 39, mwira, 
TT<f>ifjLMo-o) ; lit. Be silent, Be muzzled ! So our Lord is described 
as rebuking the fever of Peter s mother-in-law (cf. Trench, p. 155). 
Perhaps, in the light of this passage, we may see in both cases more 
of a personification than the attribution of a personal agent, though 
we cannot quite rule out the latter, either in fact or in the belief of 
our Lord and His Apostles, in view of the powers assigned to the 
devil and evil spirits in the New Testament. This may have been 
the ground of the mediaeval conviction that evil spirits have 
command over the weather, which finds typical expression in the 
beautiful episode of Buonconte da Montefeltro in Dante s Purgatorio 
(Canto V, 108-129). 

25. Where is your faith? Mat viii 26, Why are ye fearful, 
O ye of little faith ? Mk iv 40, Why are ye fearful ? have ye not 
yet faith ? They had, in modern phrase, lost their heads. His 
rebuke is called forth not because they did not expect a miracle 
though indeed they might have been sure that the boat that 
carried Messiah and His fortunes would not sink nor by the 
prayer involved in their appeal ; but rather for the breakdown of 
their trust in God s protecting hand over them, whether they should 
be engulfed or not. Here, as in the case of the miraculous draught 
(v 5), their very experience of the Lake made confidence more 
difficult. It was no landsman s alarm at a fresh breeze that awakened 
their fears ; and there were no premonitory signs of a sudden 

being afraid they marvelled. All three Evangelists emphasize 
the awed amazement of the disciples in view of this superhuman 
control of the powers of Nature. Cf. the fear roused at the 
raising of the widow s son (vii 16), and the amazement of Jairus 
and his wife (viii 56) when their daughter is restored to life. 

26-39. THE GERASENE DEMONIAC (cf. Trench, Mir., pp. 161-190). 
Like the preceding miracle, this is recorded by all three Synoptists, 
and in each it immediately follows the Storm on the Lake. It 
has been the subject of special controversy in modern times, because, 
apart from pathological and other difficulties (including the im 
plication of possession in the case of the lower animals), it 
involves wholesale destruction of the property of innocent people. 
This consideration, though not without weight, appeals less to the 
average twentieth-century mind than to that of the nineteenth 
century, for whom the rights of private property may be said to 
have stood as the climax of moral obligations. 

It is difficult to see why the problem involved should be more 
acute than that raised by an ordinary murrain, or inundation, 
allowed by Providence (cf. Trench, p. 184). 

Vin 26-39] ST LUKE 109 

26 And they arrived at the country of the 1 Gerasenes, 
which is over against Galilee. 27 And when he was come 
forth upon the land, there met him a certain man out of the 
city, who had 2 devils ; and for a long time he had worn no 
clothes, and abode not in any house, but in the tombs. 28 And 
when he saw Jesus, he cried out, and fell down before him, 
and with a loud voice said, What have I to do with thee, 
Jesus, thou Son of the Most High God ? I beseech thee, 
torment me not. 29 For he commanded the unclean spirit to 
come out from the man. For 3 oftentimes it had seized him : 
and he was kept under guard, and bound with chains and 
fetters ; and breaking the bands asunder, he was driven of 
the 4 devil into the deserts. 30 And Jesus asked him, What is 
thy name ? And he said, Legion ; for many 2 devils were 
entered into him. 31 And they intreated him that he would 
not command them to depart into the abyss. 32 Now there 
was there a herd of many swine feeding on the mountain : 
and they intreated him that he would give them leave to 
enter into them. And he gave them leave. 33 And the 
2 devils came out from the man, and entered into the swine : 
and the herd rushed down the steep into the lake, and were 
choked. 34 And when they that fed them saw what had come 
to pass, they fled, and told it in the city and in the country. 
35 And they went out to see what had come to pass ; and 
they came to Jesus, and found the man, from whom the 
2 devils were gone out, sitting, clothed and in his right mind, 
at the feet of Jesus : and they were afraid. 36 And they 
that saw it told them how he that was possessed with 2 devils 
was 5 made whole. 37 And all the people of the country of 
the Gerasenes round about asked him to depart from them ; 
for they were holden with great fear : and he entered into 
a boat, and returned. 38 But the man from whom the 2 devils 
were gone out prayed him that he might be with him : but he 
sent him away, saying, 39 Return to thy house, and declare 
how great things God hath done for thee. And he went his 

1 Many ancient authorities read Gergeaenes ; others, Godarenes: and so in ver. 37. 
a Gr. demons. * Or, of a long time * Gr. demon. 

5 Or, saved 

110 ST LUKE [Viil 26-28 

way, publishing throughout the whole city how great things 
Jesus had done for him. 

26. the country of the Gerasenes. Khersa, identified first by 
Thomson, author of The Land and the Book (p. 377), is now generally 
accepted as marking the neighbourhood in question. It is over 
against the Galilean district mainly frequented by our Lord, 
standing about midway on the eastern side of the Lake opposite 
Magdala (cf. on viii 2). The better -known Gerasa is a good thirty 
miles from the Lake. This seems to be the true reading here and 
in St Mark ; in Mat viii 28 the reading Gadara prevails. They can 
hardly both be right as history, for Khersa and the ancient site of 
Gadara ( Um Keis) are divided by more than eleven miles of mountain, 
the latter standing on a hill more than 1,000 feet up, beyond the 
valley of the Yarmuk, and some five miles distant from the Lake. 

27. a certain man . . . who had devils. A complicated case of 
multiple consciousness, represented by the bewildering inter 
change of singular and plural in the ensuing narrative. The singular 
is used up to v. 31. even where the evil spirits are speaking (v. 28), 
or are addressed by Christ (v. 29), or the man is explaining the 
multiplicity of the possession (30). In v. 31 the plural is introduced 
and maintained till v. 33. After that the man (sing.) and the devils 
(plur.) are clearly distinguished. 

for a long time, &c. In the diagnosis of the case in this verse 
and v. 29, there is a good deal of variation from the Marcan account. 
On the one hand it is noticed by Prof. Cadbury (Style, and Lit. 
Method, Harvard Studies, vi, p. 48) that neither here nor in the 
case of the Epileptic Boy (ix 37 sqq.) does Luke mention the self- 
destructive tendency on the part of the patient. And this is alleged 
as telling against the Medical Language theory of Hobart and 
his followers. On the other hand, Sir W. M. Ramsay (Luke the 
Physician, p. 58) draws attention to Luke s added statement that 
he had worn no clothes, as a symptom of the insanity that 
a physician would not willingly omit. 

in the tombs : abounding on the neighbouring hill-sides hewn 
out of the limestone rock. 

28. What have I to do urith thee ? What have we in common ? 
The instinctive utterance of the demons ; cf . iv 34. 

Jesus, thou Son of the Most High God. The recognition of Jesus 
and of His supernatural character by a kind of clairvoyance 
seems to have been general in these cases ; see especially iv 41. 
St Mark has exactly the same phrase. Mat (viii 29) has thou Son 
of God. In Lk iv 34 it is Jesus of Nazareth . . . the Holy One of 
God, and so in the parallel passage of Mark. 

The Most High God (Gen xiv 20 ; Numb xxiv 16 ; Dan iii 26, 
&c.) is the phrase used by the pagan pythoness in Ac xvi 17, 
and would be natural in a pagan mouth ; there is, however, no 
hint as to the demoniac s nationality. When St Jame (ii 19) says 

vin 28-32] ST LUKE 111 

the demons believe and tremble, he may perhaps have in his 
mind the phenomena of our Lord s Ministry the shuddering, 
cringing attitude of repulsion which seems to have accompanied 
their swift intuition of His personality. 

29. For he commanded. The mention of this command comes 
in St Mark out of its natural order, in a precisely similar way, and 
implies a documentary relation between the two accounts. Cf. the 
identical position of the parenthesis in Lk v 24 and the parallels 
in Matthew and Mark. 

with chains and fetters . Lat. manicae et pedicae. chains (aXvo-ea-iv), 
handcuffs like those from which St Peter was released by the Angel 
in Ac xii 7 ; fetters, foot-bonds, whether of metal or of rope or 
withes. The purpose was to restrain him from straying and from 
self- destruction . 

30. What is thy name ? Our Lord s purpose was, no doubt, to 
recall the patient to the consciousness of his identity ; and some 
such motive may well underlie the superstitious exorcistic routine 
of the day referred to by Deissmann (op. cit., p. 257, note 8), who 
shows that, according to recognized usage, in order to obtain com 
plete power over a demon it is necessary to know his name. He 
quotes an ancient text, The Great Magical Papyrus (cf. Ac xix 19), 
now in the Bibliotheque Nationale at Paris : I adjure thee, every 
daemonic spirit, say whatsoever thou art. 

Legion. The Latin word, transliterated into Greek, and given 
both here and in St Mark, is itself a sign of the authenticity of the 

many. The normal strength of a Legion consisted of some 
4,000 to 5,000 men. Legion to a Jew who had witnessed its 
march through his own country would symbolize a cruel inexor 
able tyranny, cf. Trench, p. 181. Levertoff points out that in 
Hellenistic Greek as well as in Rabbinic literature the Latin word 
is always used literally in a military sense ; and suggests that, as 
many Jews served in the Roman legions (Josephus, passim), the 
dread of military service had become the fixed idea of this 
demoniac, who was (Mk v 4) of great physical strength, and so 
marked out for a soldier. 

31. abyss : represents the great deep on which, in the ancient 
Hebrew conception this earth floats the waters under the earth 
of the Second Commandment. In the New Testament it symbo 
lizes the prison-house of evil spirits from which they issue on their 
malign emprises, Rev ix 1-11, xi 7, xvii 8 ; and where Satan (Rev xx 
1-3) is bound for a thousand years. 

In Mk v 10 the plea is not to be sent out of the country ; in 
both cases to be let alone, and left in the familiar environment. 
The plea argues a strange tameness, almost approaching to sym 
pathy, on the part of the demons. 

32. many swine. St Mark says about 2,000. This number 
would have to be doubled to justify arithmetically the name Legion. 

112 ST LUKE [Vlll 32-39 

But we need not be too particular about the arithmetic of a madman, 
or of the populace who may have originally fastened the name upon 
him in ridicule. 

he gave them leave. The permission is almost as unaccountable 
as the entreaty. There is no other miracle of destruction recorded 
of our Lord except the withering of the fig-tree (which is not in 
St Luke) ; there is no other instance of His giving demons their 
will, or of demoniacal possession of brutes, recorded in the Gospels. 
Moreover, the sequel looks like an undignified outwitting of the 
demons ; they beg to be allowed to enter the swine in order that they 
may avoid the abyss, and as soon as permission is granted 
apparently submerge themselves, with the swine, in the depths of 
the Lake. 

The safest conclusion seems to lie in a suspension of judgement, 
(a) Granted that demoniacal possession is a reality, there is doubtless 
much about it which we do not yet understand ; and (6) the 
account is from the point of view of onlookers, and the first eye 
witnesses, overhearing much of the conversation between our Lord 
and the demoniac, and witnessing subsequently the stampeding of 
the swine, may have added to the story an indefinite amount of 
their own interpretation. Some confusion may also have been 
added in translation from Aramaic. 

33. entered into the swine. So it seemed to the onlookers. 
Conceivably the man s cries and gesticulations at the moment of 
exorcism may have stampeded one or two, and they the whole herd. 

down the steep : not necessarily a precipice ; there is none 
such in the neighbourhood of Khersa ; but a steep grass slope or 
scree would answer to the description, and a likely spot has been 
found near by. 

35-39. Plummer notes how full these verses are of marks of 
St Luke s style (p. 232). 

35. clothed (tjaarto-^eVov) : used to be nowhere extant except 
here and in the corresponding passage of Mark. But Deissmann 
(op. cit., p. 78) has found it in inscriptions. It was, then, a current 

37. asked him to depart. They found Him more alarming than 
the demoniac, and humbly requested Him to leave. Their modern 
counterparts would have demanded exaggerated compensation ! 

38, 39. prayed him that he might be with him : perhaps a con 
scious contrast to the foregoing on the part of the original narrator 
St Peter, it may be who observed the twin movements of 
attraction and repulsion at work. The man wins his boon in a higher 
form, because though not allowed to be with Him after the flesh, 
he is made His evangelist to his native town Mark adds that he 
published the story in Decapolis (v 20). 

vin 40-42] ST LUKE 113 

(i) 40-56 A Miracle within a Miracle ; Jairus s Daughter and 
the Woman with Haemorrhage. (Trench, Mir., pp. 191-201.) 

This interweaving of two miracles is given by all three Synoptists. 
Matthew s account (ix 18-26) is the shortest, and he does not give 
the father s name, describing him as one ruler. Luke s is the 
longest; he and Mark (v 21-43) both name Jairus, and call him 
Synagogue-ruler, and, unlike Matthew, make it follow immediately 
on the incident of the Gerasene Demoniac. In w. 40-48 Plummer 
again notes very conspicuous marks of St Luke s style (p. 233). 

40 And as Jesus returned, the multitude welcomed him ; 
for they were all waiting for him. 41 And behold, there came 
a man named Jairus, and he was a ruler of the synagogue : 
and he fell down at Jesus feet, and besought him to come into 
his house ; 42 for he had an only daughter, about twelve 
years of age, and she lay a dying. But as he went the multi 
tudes thronged him. 

40. returned: crossing over (as Mark notes v 21) back to the 
W. side of the Lake. 

the multitude welcomed him : received Him joyfully He 
reciprocates in ix 11. Christ was, at this period, practically living 
in public. Even when He sought much-needed retirement, He was 
followed by those who could not resist His attraction. The earliest 
instance of thwarted retirement is given by St Mark (i 36). He is 
interrupted in His prayers even before dawn ; the most conspicuous 
case is that of the Miracle of the Five Thousand (ix 11, where Mk vi 31 
specially emphasizes the desire for retirement). See note on ix 11. 

41. Ja irus : a Hebrew name the Jair of the Old Testament. 
a ruler of the synagogue. These officials are frequently mentioned 

by Luke. Once again in the Gospel (xiii 14 the only hostile in 
stance), twice in Acts (xiii 15, the Rulers (pi.) at Antioch in Pisidia 
invite St Paul and his companion to preach ; xviii 8 Crispus, 
the Ruler of the Corinthian Synagogue, becomes a convert to 
Christianity). On their functions, see Edersheim, L. and T. i 438. 
As the Synagogue administered the Law for the local community, 
Jairus was a Church official on the Sabbath, and on week-days 
a sort of magistrate. 

42. an only daughter. St Luke only notes this, as the Widow s 
only son vii 12, and that the epileptic boy was an only child ix 38. 

lay a dying. Mark makes the father say is at the point of death, 
and Matthew, in his syncopated account (which leaves out the 
message of v. 49), is even now dead. 

thronged him : crowded round Him to the point of suffocation. 
Their eager welcome (v. 40) converted itself, as often with a crowd, 
into unconscious hustling. 

L. 8 

114 ST LUKE [vm 43-48 

43-48. THE WOMAN WITH HAEMORRHAGE. (Mat ix 20-22, 
Mk v 25-34.) On the way to one healing act, Jesus is interrupted 
by the appeal of another. 

43 And a woman having an issue of blood twelve years, 
which J had spent all her living upon physicians, and could 
not be healed of any, 44 came behind him, and touched the 
border of his garment : and immediately the issue of her 
blood stanched. 45 And Jesus said, Who is it that touched 
me ? And when all denied, Peter said, 2 and they that were 
with him, Master, the multitudes press thee and crush thee. 
46 But Jesus said, Some one did touch me : for I perceived 
that power had gone forth from me. 47 And when the woman 
saw that she was not hid, she came trembling, and falling 
down before him declared in the presence of all the people 
for what cause she touched him, and how she was healed 
immediately. 48 And he said unto her, Daughter, thy faith 
hath 3 made thee whole ; go in peace. 

1 Some ancient authorities omit had spent all her living upon physicians, and. 

2 Some ancient authorities omit and they that were with him. 

3 Or, saved thee 

43. having an issue : lit., being in (a state of) haemorrhage. 
The term is the usual medical one (Hobart, p. 15) ; therefore, though 
the whole passage bristles (see note on vv. 40-56) with v his charac 
teristic innovations, Luke had no temptation to change the phrase 
here as he had done, e. g., in v 18. 

twelve years. All three Synoptists name this as the age of 
Jairus s daughter ; Luke and Mark give it also as the duration of 
the woman s trouble. Hobart (p. 40) remarks on Luke s medical 
note of the time the disease had lasted here ; in the case of the 
infirm woman, eighteen years (xiii 16) ; in Acts, the lame man at 
the Temple-gate, forty years (iii 2, iv 22), and Aeneas bedridden 
eight years (ix 33). It is not only in the case of disease. The 
physician has acquired a habit of inquiring into and recording such 
details. So, in the passages peculiar to himself, he gives (ii 36, 37) 
the elaborate statistics of Anna s life ; (ii 42) our Lord s age at the 
time of His boyhood visit to the Temple ; and, in the part common 
to all three he alone indicates Christ s age (iii 23) at the beginning 
of His Ministry. 

had spent all her living. St Mark (v 26) is much fuller had 
suffered many things of many physicians, and had spent all that 
she had, and was nothing bettered, but rather grew worse. The 
physician s touch is visible in what Luke eliminates, and in what 
he retains. Loyalty to the profession restrains his criticism within 

Vill 43-47] ST LUKE 115 

limits ; within those limits loyalty to truth and a sense of humour 
(cf. note on xi 5-8) bid him speak out. The traditional remedies 
for this complaint seem to have been peculiarly futile. The Lord s 
authoritative sureness of touch in spiritual healing (cf. note on 
iv 40) was in great contrast. 

It is worth noting, however, that the Syr-Sin, omits even this 
phrase, and makes the beloved physician avoid all reference to 
the failures of the doctors (P. L.). 

44. the border: the tassel. One of the four tassels of His 
under -garment would be visible behind as He walked, underneath 
the upper robe. 

Modesty, and perhaps the fear of rebuff (her touch would 
bring Levitical uncleanness, Lev xv 25), led her to approach thus 
clandestinely. Her rather superstitious faith in something as it 
were magical about the very clothes he wore impels her to filch 
a miracle from Him if possible without His knowledge. St Matthew 
(xiv 36) shows us a similar touching but this time openly 
efficacious on a large scale ; and St Luke, in Ac v 15, mentions a 
number of cures at Jerusalem effected even by Peter s shadow. 
In these cases auto-suggestion may have played a large part. 
But the lesson is an important one ; better a faith mingled with 
superstition than unbelief or indifference. This woman alone, 
amid all the thronging crowd, drew virtue from the Lord ; and 
it was her faith, after all (v. 48), that won it. 

stanched. Here St Luke changes the phraseology of his source 
and substitutes the verb lo-ravcu, which is the technical one in cases 
of haemorrhage (see ref . to the four chief medical writers in Hobart, 
M.L.,p. 15). 

45. Who is it that touched me ? He had distinguished, in the 
general press, the touch of faith, and instinctively responded with 
healing power. He had not seen her ; but the purpose of His 
question was doubtless largely to clinch her faith by the moral 
courage of open confession which would win a further blessing (v. 48). 

Peter said . . . Master. Peter is forward as usual, spokesman of 
the Twelve, and here he addresses our Lord again by the title 
he had used when he became a disciple (v 5. See note on viii 24.). 

46. power had gone forth from me. It seems as though His healing 
power was always (almost mechanically) accessible to the touch of 
faith not so much unconsciously as through a constant and habitual 
attitude of His will. This perception of His would seem to imply 
that the power He transmitted definitely cost Him something and 
added to His physical exhaustion. It is perhaps in reference to this 
that St Matthew (viii 16, 17) in describing the great day of miracles 
in Capernaum (cf. Lk iv 40 sq.) quotes Isa liii 4 : Himself took 
our infirmities, and bare our diseases. 

47. the woman . . . trembling. In fear that she had committed 
an offence, she had joined in the general denial (v. 45), now she is 
doubly afraid, and may well expect a withdrawal of the boon. 


116 ST LUKE [VIII 47-50 

A complete and open confession puts her right, and leaves her in 
the attitude of soul to receive the Lord s benediction (v. 48). 

48. Daughter. Word of reassuring affection. 

thy faith : in spite of (a) her prevarication now amended and 
(b) the mixture of superstition. She was right about the Personal 
source of healing, if wrong about the means. The episode may 
throw light on our sacramental touch of the Lord ; where also 
(though much to be deplored) superstition is doubtless effective 
in winning blessings barred to indifference and unbelief. 

go in (into) peace. Christ s habitual valediction in such cases. 

Does it imply here that she is absolved from the ritual formalities 
of Lev xv 28-30 ? The Levitical rules are prescribed for obser 
vance by our Lord in the case of cleansed lepers (v 14, xvii 14). 
Perhaps this was more necessary as a measure of public hygiene. 

49-56. THE JAIRUS NARRATIVE RESUMED. The situation is 
intensely instructive, and illustrative of our Lord s work both 
then and now. The interruption of the miracle on the woman, 
valuable and significant in itself, has also served a further purpose. 
The delay has been a call for patience in Jairus ; the sad news 
now brought to him a test and a strengthening of his faith ; a new 
situation has arisen, as in the case of Lazarus (Jn xi), that the 
Son of God may be glorified thereby (Jn xi 4) ; Jesus might have 
said, as in that case (Jn xi 14, 15), The child is dead. And I am 
glad for your sakes that I was not there, to the intent ye may 

49 While he yet spake, there cometh one from the ruler of 
the synagogue s house, saying, Thy daughter is dead ; trouble 
not the faster. 50 But Jesus hearing it, answered him, 
Fear not : only believe, and she shall be 2 made whole. 51 And 
when he came to the house, he suffered not any man to enter 
in with him, save Peter, and John, and James, and the father 
of the maiden and her mother. 52 And all were weeping, and 
bewailing her : but he said, Weep not ; for she is not dead, 
but sleepeth. 53 And they laughed him to scorn, knowing 
that she was dead. 54 But he, taking her by the hand, called, 
saying, Maiden, arise. 55 And her spirit returned, and she 
rose up immediately : and he commanded that something be 
given her to eat. 56 And her parents were amazed : but he 
charged them to tell no man what had been done. 

1 Or, Teacher 2 Or, saved 

49. the Master : better Teacher (R.V. margin), or Rabbi 
not the special word of v. 45. 

50. Fear not : only believe. Cease to fear (pres.) : make an 

Vlll 5 o-s6] ST LUKE 117 

act of faith (aor. ) . In St Luke s version the man is called to summon 
all his power and concentrate it on an act of faith ; in St Mark s 
(imperf.) to continue perse veringly the exercise of his sorely tried 
belief. The whole issue evidently depends on the faith of the parent. 

51. suffered not : to enter into the room. Not only to eliminate 
the disturbing influences of attitudes other than faith incredulity, 
curiosity, &c. but also because, as the next verse implies, the hired 
mourners were already on the scene. St Mark states that He 
turned all these out of the house, as did St Peter before the raising 
of Dorcas (Ac ix 40). 

Peter, and John, and James. Luke has this unusual order (the order 
of prominence as distinct from that of seniority) also at the Trans 
figuration, ix 28, and in his enumeration of the assembled disciples 
after the Ascension, Ac i 13. These three were the chosen witnesses 
of His power (here), His glory (ix 28), and His Agony (Mat xxvi 37, 
Mk xiv 33). 

52. Weep not . . . sleepeth. Not literally (see next verse) ; but 
death is only sleep where Christ is there to awaken. So His followers, 
trusting in His eventual awakening (Jn v 28), speak of their departed 
as fallen asleep, and of their burial grounds as cemeteries 
(KCH/^TT/PIO. = sleeping-places ). Christ uses sleep also of Lazarus ; 
and though the word is different from St Luke s (Jn xi 11), the sense 
is the same. Cf. also Trench, Mir., pp. 195, 196. 

53. knowing that she mas dead. Peculiar to St Luke ; and 
introduced not so much to justify their incredulous laughter as to 
imply that it was a genuine raising from death, not from mere 

54. taking her by the hand, called, &c. Luke omitted the hand- 
grasp in the case of Peter s mother-in-law (iv 39). Here he also 
indicates the raising of the voice (cf. viii 8) as if to awake one 
out of sleep. Mark gives the actual Aramaic words of the call ; 
Talitha cumi ! and adds that she walked. Luke alone adds, 
her spirit returned. 

55. that something be given her to eat. Ramsay (L.P., p. 58) 
makes much of this common-sense injunction as a touch character 
istic of the Physician. It should be noted, however, that though 
Matthew has it not, Mark (presumably the source) has (Mk v 43). 
If Luke had omitted it, with Matthew, there might have been cause 
for comment. It is true portraiture of the Lord Himself that leads 
Luke to blend the natural and supernatural (cf. Introd., p. xxxvii). 
The wonderfully restored life is to resume its customary routine. 

56. charged them to tell no man. He often gave similar in 
junctions. We may perhaps see special appropriateness here. The 
bruiting of such cases would have embarrassed His Ministry, 
thronging His steps with bereaved persons, and giving a false, 
thaumaturgic perspective of His work and function. Physical 
death, after all, is normal in this our state, if disease is abnormal, 
and would outlast the elimination of disease. Our Lord can have 

118 ST LUKE [VIII 56-1x1 

had no desire to raise the dead on a large scale. The actual recorded 
cases are but three (see note on vii 11-18), though others are hinted 
at. His healings, on the other hand (cf. iv 40, vii 21, viii 2, ix 1, 11, 
x 13, 17, xiii 32), must have amounted to many hundreds. 

Besides this there was the personal side the good of the bene 
ficiaries. The gift received was too great and solemn to be allowed 
to evaporate in vainglorious gossip (Adeney). To thank God 
for it at home would be far more profitable than talking about it 

No such command is recorded as given at Nain (Lk vii 16, 17) 
or at Bethany (Jn xi 44), and it is clear that something of a sensation 
was aroused in each case ; the latter in a marked degree (Jn xii 9), 
but too late to affect the purposes of the Ministry. 

IX 1-50 Fourth Period and Climax of the Galilean Ministry : 
From the Mission of the Twelve to the end of the Northern 

This chapter records the climax of the Galilean Ministry, whether 
we place it in the Feeding of the Five Thousand (w. 12-17), uniquely 
recorded by all four Evangelists, the moment when (Jn vi 15) 
vast crowds were eager to proclaim Him Nationalist King the 
summit, therefore, of external popular success or in the Great 
Confession (w. 20, 21), which may be counted a landmark in 
Apostolic belief ; or in the Transfiguration (w. 28-36), which would 
doubtless form a climax to the inmost circle of the disciples, and in 
some sense a fulfilment of the promise given in ix 27. 

It contains also the first definite references by our Lord to His 
Passion the first following close upon Peter s Confession (v. 22). 

From the point of view of the Synoptic Problem, this section 
has a special interest because of the Great Omission. After the 
account of the Feeding of the Five Thousand (precisely between 
w. 17 and 18 of this chapter), comes a long section of Mk vi 45 
viii 26, of which there is no trace in this Gospel. Up to that point 
St Luke has followed the Marcan source fairly exactly, 1 except that 
he eliminates the digression on the Baptist s imprisonment (Mk vi 
17-29), having already recorded it succinctly by anticipation in 
iii 19, 20. 

After the Great Omission, he again takes up the Marcan 
sequence, and follows it closely to the end of this section (ix 50). 
His chief omissions are (a) the Rebuke of Peter, following on the 
Great Confession (Mk viii 32, 33) ; the discussion on the way down 
from the Transfiguration (Mk ix 9-13), and the Discourse which, 
in Mark, follows John s statement about the man who followeth 
not us (Mk ix 41-50). 

1 Though, according to Canon Streeter s latest theory (Hibbert Journ. Oct. 1921, 
pp. 103-112), he derived from Q or other sources rather than from Mark not only 
the matter of vi 20 viii 3, but also that of iii 1 iv 30. Cf . Introd., p. xxiii, note. 

IX i -6] ST LUKE 119 

In St Matthew the Mission of the Twelve (together with their 
names) is recorded at the beginning of ch x, and the departure from 
Galilee after the end of ch xviii. His narrative varies very greatly 
from the other two. The Mission of the Twelve (x 1), Herod s 
Perplexity (xiv 1), and the Feeding of the Five Thousand (xiv 15) 
(followed by some of the items of Mk vi 45 sqq.), the Great Con 
fession (followed by Tu es Petrus ), the Prediction of the Passion 
and the Rebuke (xvi 13-28), the Transfiguration and the Epileptic 
Boy (xvii 1), and the incident of the little child (xviii 1) follow the 
Marcan sequence, but large blocks of other matter are introduced 
between the earlier items matter of which much has appeared 
earlier in Mark and Luke. 

(a) 1-6 The Mission of the Twelve 

Chosen some time back (Lkvi 13-16,Mkiii 14-19), they are mentioned 
by Matthew first at this point ; but he assumes a previous selection 
in the phrase his twelve disciples ) ; the Twelve are now sent out 
two by two on a definite mission of preaching and healing ; even as 
(according to St Luke x 1) the Seventy were sent out later. How 
long the Mission lasted we are not told. Matthew does not record 
their return ; Mark and Luke interpose no event between the 
departure and return, separating them by a digression on Herod 
and John Baptist which probably refers to an effect of the Mission 
(see note on ix 7). 

This Mission is a new venture. The whole body hitherto kept 
together close to our Lord s Person ( that they might be with him, 
Mk iii 14), and, supported by the alms and ministrations of the 
faithful women (viii 3), are now to disperse in pairs throughout the 
villages, and win experience and a right self-confidence, trusting to 
the hospitality of those to whom they are sent. 

IX And he called the twelve together, and gave them 
power and authority over all 1 devils, and to cure diseases. 
2 And he sent them forth to preach the kingdom of God, 
and to heal ^he sick. 3 And he said unto them, Take nothing 
for your journey, neither staff, nor wallet, nor bread, nor 
money ; neither have two coats. 4 And into whatsoever 
house ye enter, there abide, and thence depart. 5 And as 
many as receive you not, when ye depart from that city, 
shake off the dust from your feet for a testimony against them. 
6 And they departed, and went throughout the villages, 
preaching the gospel, and healing everywhere. 

1 Gr. demons. * Some ancient authorities omit the sick. 

120 ST LUKE [IX 1-4 

1. gave them power and authority. Power, Luke only. The 
same words, in the same order, are applied to our Lord by the 
onlookers after the healing of the demoniac in the Synagogue at 
Capernaum. Here He transmits to the Twelve gifts which He 
admittedly possessed, and by which He is differentiated from the 
contemporary Jewish exorcists (Lk iv 36). 

over all devils : see note on x 17. 

2. to preach the kingdom of God : not teach as our Lord had been 
doing, but to announce the kingdom ; possibly, as in the case of 
the Seventy (x 1), heralding a proximate visit of Jesus Himself. 

3-6. And he said unto them. The charge, as given here, is little 
fuller than that in St Mark (vi 8-13). St Matthew s version is very 
much longer, occupying nearly a whole chapter (Mat x 5-42), and 
he gives here many details of instruction which St Luke reserves 
for the Seventy (Lk x 2-16). He also prefaces the calling together 
of the Twelve with words about the harvest and the labourers 
(Mat ix 37, 38), which in Lk x 2 are addressed to the Seventy. 
Has Luke confused the testimony of his sources, and made two 
events out of one ? A priori it is very unlikely. Dr Vernon Bartlet 
decides, after a careful examination of the phenomena (Oxf. Studies, 
pp. 324, 325), That Luke s special source contained both of these 
commissions, in terms having much in common, is the hypothesis 
which seems best to fit all the facts. Two such charges would be 
sure to have much in common, and (as Dr Bartlet points out), 
some assimilation of language between them would easily go on 
in tradition. An instance of possible confusion arising out of this 
similarity is found in Lk xxii 35, which (unless the Twelve were 
included in the Seventy) should correspond to v. 3 here, but 
actually = x 4. 

3. Take nothing for your journey. Like the first preaching 
friars of the thirteenth century they would quickly win the con 
fidence of the people by throwing themselves trustfully on their 

neither staff. Mark says only a staff. 

wallet. Deissmann (op. cit., p. 108) quotes a Greek inscription to 
show that wallet may mean here (as in Shakespeare s Troilus, 
in iii 145) a bag carried by a beggar for alms : 

Time hath, my lord, a wallet at his back 
Wherein he puts alms for oblivion. 

The Twelve will then differ from the friars in that they may not be 
mendicants, begging from house to house. In fact, the next verse 
precludes this. 

4. there abide, and thence depart : balanced in the charge to the 
Seventy by the phrase Go not from house to house (x 7). The 
business of the Missioners is not to be feted. A quiet stay in one 
house will give them most time and the best opportunities. Many 
of these injunctions were, in principle, adopted by the Women 

IX s-9] ST LUKE 121 

Pilgrims of our National Mission of 1915-1916, and their practical 
value proved by experience. 

5. shake off the dust. St Luke records how Paul and Barnabas 
actually employed this expressive symbol of repudiation on leaving 
Antioch in Pisidia (Ac xiii 51). The same gesture is named in the 
charge to the Seventy (x 11), but a different verb is used. See note 
on that passage. 

6. preaching . . . and healing. Christ s care for body and soul 
alike (so strikingly exhibited, e. g. in the cure of the paralysed man, 
v 20-25), has been characteristic of His Church s Mission, at her 
best, throughout the centuries. The first hospitals on a large scale 
were founded in His name by St Basil the Great in the fourth 
century ; Medical Missions in the East are among the most successful 
and the most Christ-like to-day. On Spiritual Healing of the 
body, see note on iv 40. 

(b) 7-9 Herod s Perplexity 

St Luke follows the Marcan account in making this a sequel to 
the Mission of the Twelve. Herod s alarm is an index of the spread 
of the fame of Jesus, and so of the immediate success of the Mission. 
St Matthew disconnects it, and rather strangely places it, in con 
nexion with the story of the Baptist s imprisonment and martyrdom 
(xiv 1-12), at the point in the narrative where the news of John s 
death (xiv 13) reaches Jesus. 

7 Now Herod the tetrarch heard of all that was done : 
and he was much perplexed, because that it was said by some, 
that John was risen from the dead ; 8 and by some, that 
Elijah had appeared ; and by others, that one of the old 
prophets was risen again. 9 And Herod said, John I beheaded : 
but who is this, about whom I hear such things ? And he 
sought to see him. 

7. Herod the tetrarch: Herod Antipas (iii 1), here given his 
correct title by Luke (as by Matthew). Mark accords him his 
courtesy title of King. 

all tliat was done. Especially the Mission of the Twelve, and the 
interest it aroused in their Master. St Matthew, having disconnected 
this episode from the Mission, substitutes heard the report con 
cerning Jesus. 

it was said by some. These popular rumours are reproduced by 
the disciples in answer to our Lord s question at Caesarea Philippi 
(ix 19). 

9. And he sought to see him : leading up to the exclusively 
Lucan episode of the sending to Herod in the Passion narrative 
(xxiii 8b). 

122 ST LUKE [IX I0 , ii 

(c) 10-17 Return of the Twelve ; Feeding of the Five Thousand 

10, 11. RETURN OF THE TWELVE. St Matthew nowhere men 
tions the return of the Twelve. Between their commission (ch x) 
and the episode of Herod s perplexity which precedes the Miracle 
of the Five Thousand, he interposes (ch xi) the Baptist s embassy, 
the rebuke of disbelieving cities (in Luke associated with commission 
of the Seventy), the outburst of Thanksgiving (in Luke associated 
with return of Seventy) ; ch xii, the incident of the Cornfields, the 
Withered Hand, the Beelzebub discussion, the demand for a Sign, 
the Mother and Brethren ; ch xiii the first group of Parables. In 
Mark and Luke the digression about Herod is followed immediately 
by the notice of the return of the Twelve and the Miracle of the 
Loaves and Fishes. But the Marcan narrative is full of little 
picturesque terms not found here, which favours the conjecture 
that Luke must have had a separate, partly parallel source which 
ceases at the close of the Five Thousand (Lk ix 17, Mk vi 44) ; 
cf. below, notes on w. 10, 14, and 17. The theory is adduced by 
Dr J. V. Bartlet, Oxf. Studies, p. 324. 

10 And the apostles, when they were returned, declared 
unto him what things they had done. And he took them, and 
withdrew apart to a city called Bethsaida. 11 But the multi 
tudes perceiving it followed him : and he welcomed them, and 
spake to them of the kingdom of God, and them that had need 
of healing he healed. 

10. what things they had done : as already sketched in v. 6. 
There is eloquent testimony to the success of their Mission in 
xxii 35, where in reply to our Lord s question on the night of betrayal 
they are prompt to own that they lacked nothing. 

withdrew apart. Mark s version (vi 31) is much more explicit. 
Come ye yourselves apart into a desert place, and rest a while. 
For there were many coming and going, &c. Here, though the 
Lord s words are not given, the implication is the same. They 
needed rest of nerve and spirit in fact, that exercise of Retreat 
for which this incident has always provided the most obvious text. 

to a city called Bethsaida. The other two Synoptists, and the 
fourth Evangelist also (Jn vi 1), make it clear that they crossed 
the Lake by boat, into a desert place, but name no city. If St Luke 
is right in naming the city, it is probably to be identified with 
Bethsaida Julias (see note on x 13). 

The gloss represented by the A. V. here, to a desert place belonging 
to a city called B., which has large though insufficient MS authority, 
is doubtless an early and a true gloss. The city itself is excluded 
by w. 11, 12. On the traditional site of this miracle a modern 
writer records a touching custom of the Russian pilgrims, who 

Mn-17] ST LUKE 128 

bring bread with them from Jerusalem, and distribute it on the 
spot to each one present (Stephen Graham). 

11. But the multitudes . . . followed him. Here again, as twice 
at least before (see note on viii 23), His desire for retirement was 
to be thwarted by the very effectiveness of His mission. 

and he welcomed them: as always (cf. Mat xi 28). So the tired 
parish priest after an exhausting day s work welcomes an un 
expected call to pastoral activity. 

he healed. Mark (neither Matthew nor John) speaks of teach 
ing here ; Luke the Physician alone of healing. 

12-17. THE FIVE THOUSAND. (Trench, Mir., pp. 281-294; Latham, 
Pastor Pastorum, pp. 22, 30 sqq.) These crowds, whose eager converg 
ing is vividly described by St Mark (vi 33), probably represent the 
maximum number confronted by our Lord at any one time until the 
Passion. As such, they constitute this miracle the only one 
recorded by all four Evangelists in one sense the climax of the 
Galilean ministry (cf. Jn vi 15). There was, as Dr Plummer 
puts it, no counter-attraction ; for the Twelve had returned, 
and the Baptist was dead. This occasion is important as (a) the 
first on which our Lord deals with masses of people, and (6) the 
first also on which He uses the Apostles as agents in a miracle. It 
is a natural sequel to their Mission. 

12 And the day began to wear away ; and the twelve 
came, and said unto him, Send the multitude away, that they 
may go into the villages and country round about, and lodge, 
and get victuals : for we are here in a desert place. 13 But 
he said unto them, Give ye them to eat. And they said, We 
have no more than five loaves and two fishes ; except we 
should go and buy food for all this people. 14 For they were 
about five thousand men. And he said unto his disciples, 
Make them J sit down in companies, about fifty each. 15 And 
they did so, and made them all J sit down. 16 And he took 
the five loaves and the two fishes, and looking up to heaven, 
he blessed them, and brake ; and gave to the disciples to set 
before the multitude. 17 And they did eat, and were all 
filled : and there was taken up that which remained over to 
them of broken pieces, twelve baskets. 

1 Gr. recline. 

12. the twelve came, and said unto him. So, too, the other two 
Synoptists put the initiative with the Disciples. St John, on the 
contrary, makes our Lord take the initiative, and in so doing he is 
very likely consciously correcting the previous narratives from his 

124 ST LUKE [IX .12 -17 

personal memory (his own narrative, bearing unmistakable evidence 
of an eyewitness, is of first-rate importance here). 

The thought may have occurred independently to Christ and to 
His disciples, and Jesus have put His own question to Philip in 
John s hearing, while some of the others, unaware of this, pro 
pounded the problem to Him independently soon afterwards. 

13. Give ye. The pronoun is emphatic. It is you, not they, 
who have to find the food. There is a curious anticipation of this 
situation in the query of Elisha s servant when a hundred un 
expected guests were to be fed : What, should I set this before 
an hundred men ? But he said, Give the people, that they may 
eat . . . (2 Kgs iv 43). According to Mark and John it would have 
cost more than 200 denarii to feed them with bread in the ordinary 

We have no more than five loaves, die. So Matthew and Mark ; 
John (vi 9) makes Andrew say, There is a lad here, (perhaps carrying 
the rations of the Twelve) which hath five barley loaves, and two 
fishes. No doubt, again a conscious correction of, or addition to, 
the synoptic narrative. 

14. about five thousand men : males (avSpes) specifies Luke ; 
the other three, more explicitly, add apart from women and 
children. Perhaps 7,000 to 7,500 in all. 

Make them sit down: St Mark s narrative is, here again, strikingly 
more picturesque and vivid. In common with Matthew and John 
he mentions the green grass (showing that it was the spring 
season), and exclusively he pictures the banqueting-companies 
of fifty, in their varied oriental garb, as so many flower-beds 
spread over the turf. (Mk vi 39, 40.) 

16. Here, at the supreme moment of the narrative, the three 
Synoptists agree almost verbatim. Even if their sources were 
different, we should expect in each greater exactness at this point. 
St John for blessed (euAdy^o-ev) has gave thanks (e^a/sior^o-as) 
significantly ; for this miracle and the Sermon upon it which he alone 
records (preached on the morrow, a Sabbath, in the Synagogue at 
Capernaum, Jn vi 22-65), takes the place in his narrative of the 
institution of the Holy Eucharist (Lk xxii 14-23), even as the 
discourse to Nicodemus (Jn iii) seems to take the place of St Mat 
thew s record of the institution of Christian Baptism (Mat xxviii 19). 
If, however, Christ did prepare His disciples for the Eucharist to 
come by a discourse on the Bread of Life, that does not make 
this blessing here a consecration of the Blessed Sacrament, any 
more than the blessing of Lk xxiv 30 (see note there). 

Every pious head of a Jewish household solemnly blessed God 
and gave thanks at every meal. The disciples must have been long 
accustomed to this practice on their Master s part ; but never yet 
had they seen so Divine a response to the Benediction. 

17. were all filled. How ? This is the best attested of all our 
Lord s miracles (cf. Weiss, quoted at length by Plummer ad, loc.), 

IX 17-20] ST LUKE 125 

and one of the most difficult to rationalize. If each of the hungry 
people could have been given a tiny fragment of food, and the rest 
done by suggestion, that might yield a possible explanation. But 
the disproportion between the available food and the numbers to 
be fed make it a physical impossibility. 

To disciples in all ages who have seen, in the spiritual sphere, 
their mean and minute contributions to the feeding of His flock 
blessed and multiplied beyond belief, the story of the Miracle is so 
charged with meaning that they cease to question. 

St Augustine (on St John xxiv init., cf. also Serm. cxxx 1, quoted 
by Trench, pp. 288, 289) characteristically suggests that in this 
work and the Miracle of Cana we see the Creative Word effecting 
in a moment what He does year by year in the succession of the 
seasons multiplying wine and bread in the vintage and the harvest. 

It would be more consonant with present-day ideas of our 
Lord s marvellous works if (without derogation to the reality of 
His Divinity) we could attribute them all to the perfection of that 
human nature which He assumed at the Incarnation. Cf. note 
on iv. 40. 

After this verse comes the Great Omission. Our Gospel passes 
over the substance of Mk vi 45 viii 26, and takes up the Marcan 
narrative at viii 27, Peter s Great Confession, the scene of which is 
placed by both Matthew and Mark at Caesarea Philippi. Of the 
various attempted explanations of this phenomenon (see Preliminary 
Note on iv 14 ix 50, p. 57, and cf . Introd., p. xli) perhaps the simplest 
is that of Dr Vernon Bartlet (Oxf. Studies, p. 324), who thinks 
that here St Luke is working upon a source other than our second 
Gospel, but largely parallel with it, which contained the substance of 
Mk vi 7-44 followed immediately by that of Mk viii 27 sqq. See 
also Hawkins, Oxf. Studies, pp. 62-79. 

(d) 18-27 St Peter s Confession and the Doctrine of the Cross 

18-20. THE GREAT CONFESSION. As the Feeding of the Five 
Thousand, with its excited enthusiasm (Jn vi 15), can claim to 
be the climax of the Galilean Ministry so far as the crowds were 
concerned ; so this to the circle of the intimate Disciples. The 
Synoptists agree, St Matthew most emphatically (see Mat xvi 
17-19), that it marks a crisis in the Disciples conception of the 
Person of their Master ; and whereas St John seems to antedate 
the definite expression of the Lord s claims, and their perception 
of His Messiahship (see, e. g., Jni 41, 45, 49), the probabilities would 
seem to be in favour of a true perspective in the earlier narratives ; 
and though in general St John s memory of actual facts and incidents 
be accurate enough to warrant his detailed corrections (see notes 
on vv. 12, 13 above), yet after many years his picture of the trend 
of feelings, movements, thoughts, and attitudes might suffer from 

126 ST LUKE [1x18-20 

18 And it came to pass, as he was praying alone, the 
disciples were with him : and he asked them, saying, Who do 
the multitudes say that I am ? 19 And they answering said, 
John the Baptist ; but others say, Elijah ; and others, that 
one of the old prophets is risen again. 20 And he said unto 
them, But who say ye that I am ? And Peter answering said, 
The Christ of God. 

18. as he was praying alone. Very characteristic of this Gospel ; 
see note on iii 21, ix 28, and Introduction, p. xl. The scene, as the 
other Synoptists tell us, is Caesarea Philippi, on the northern 
frontier of Palestine, where Judaism and Paganism met. (See note 
on x 13.) 

he asked them : realizing that it was now time that their con 
ception of Him should become less na ive and nebulous. The first 
question (v. 18) is the prelude to the second (v. 20). 

19. they answering said. The wording of their answer is a 
reproduction of ix 7, 8 the reports that had reached Herod. We 
may compare the questions asked of the Baptist by the deputation 
from Jerusalem, Jn i 19-21. 

20. Peter : as always, foremost (cf . viii 45, ix 33) ; here to his 
credit. His answer, as given by the three Synoptists, may be 
tabulated as follows : 

Mk (viii 29), Thou art the Christ. 

Lk (ix 20), The Christ of God. 

Mat (xvi 16), Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. 

The Christ of God, i. e. the Messiah, whom God has anointed 
and sent. All three Synoptists evidently regard it as the first 
confession of Jesus as Messiah. 

St Matthew alone (xvi 17-19) records the famous response of 
our Lord, Tu es Petrus, on which so much (besides the Church 
itself) has been built (see Micklem, St Matthew, pp. 166-168, in this 
series) : and he, as well as St Mark, follows it up by the severe rebuke 
to Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan (Mat xvi 23, Mk viii 33). 
St Luke, impartially, omits both. Probably they were not in his 
source ; but he has been accused (A. B. Bruce, Expos. Ok. Test, i 46, 
ap. Oxf. Studies, p. 70) of a tendency to leave out or soften down 
incidents humiliating to the Disciples a tendency to spare the 
twelve. (For the grounds of this supposition which is, of course, 
in line with his genial and sympathetic nature see instances 
adduced by Sir John Hawkins, Oxf. Studies, as above.) 

The fourth Evangelist, who has so little to say about the 
Northern Ministry, says nothing of Confession or Rebuke ; but in 
his first Epistle he has a close parallel : Whosoever believeth that 
Jesus is the Christ is begotten of God (1 Jn v 1, cf. iv 2). Cf. also 
Romx9, Philii 11. 

IX 2i-2 7 ] ST LUKE 127 


21 But he charged them, and commanded them to tell this 
to no man ; 22 saying, The Son of man must suffer many 
things, and be rejected of the elders and chief priests and 
scribes, and be killed, and the third day be raised up. 23 And 
he said unto all, If any man would come after me, let him 
deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. 

24 For whosoever would save his Hife shall lose it ; but who 
soever shall lose his ^ife for my sake, the same shall save it. 

25 For what is a man profited, if he gain the whole world, 
and lose or forfeit his own self ? 26 For whosoever shall be 
ashamed of me and of my words, of him shall the Son of man 
be ashamed, when he cometh in his own glory, and the glory 
of the Father, and of the holy angels. 27 But I tell you of 
a truth, There be some of them that stand here, which shall in 
no wise taste of death, till they see the kingdom of God. 

1 Or, soul 

21. he charged them, and commanded them : very emphatic. 
After the recent attempt (Jn vi 15) to force Him to lead a Nationalist 
insurrection, it was clear that the proclamation of His Messiahship 
would lead to more harm than good. According to the fourth 
Evangelist the Samaritan Woman (Jn iv 26, 29) had already 
recognized it but that was in the isolated Samaritan country. 

22. The Son of man must suffer many things, &c. This is 
Christ s first Prediction of His Passion. He makes haste to set 
before them what had surely been made clearer to Him in His 
time of prayer (v. 18) the difference between what actually awaits 
Him and the career of earthly glory and conquest popularly 
expected for Him. This is a turning-point in the Gospel story, as 
Mk viii 31 and Mat xvi 21 make clear. The definite expression of 
what awaits Him (which must have been with Him, in embryo at 
least, since the Temptation) now first reaches His disciples, and the 
shadow of the Cross is over the rest of their wanderings. The 
thought recurs in our Gospel at the Transfiguration (ix 31 and xiii 
33) ; at ix 44 comes the second Prediction ; the third at xvii 25 ; the 
fourth and fullest Prediction at xviii 31-33. The phenomena of 
these Predictions of the Passion are of some interest, and desiderate 
further study. 

St Mark gives three Predictions, in something like an ascending 
scale. The first (viii 31, cf. Mat xvi 21) answers to this almost word 
for word ; the second (ix 31, cf. Mat xvii 22) comes after the incident 
of the Epileptic Boy, and adds the new thought of delivery into 
the hands of men, the third (x 33, 34, not in Mat), uttered on 

128 ST LUKE [1X22-24 

the last journey to Jerusalem, is the fullest of all, and refers to 
the Mocking, Spitting, and Scourging. St Luke gives all three, and 
at the same points in the narrative. His second (ix 44) is briefest, 
and gives nothing but the differentia shall be delivered up into the 
hands of men ; his first and fourth are closely parallel to the 
Marcan first and third, the fourth even fuller, adding shamefully 
intreated. St Luke adds (ix 31) a reference to His Decease 
(efoSos) at the Transfiguration itself, and St Matthew (xvii 12), an 
incidental reference to His suffering on the way down from the 
mountain (cf. Mk ix 12). 

That the details should become clearer to our Lord s mind as 
His hour drew nearer is quite natural, with His constant medi 
tation on the Father s will and dedication of Himself to the 
Messianic purpose (cf. Jn v 30 and passim). 

What is not so clear is (a) why at the first announcement (here 
and Mk viii 31) He should disclose so much detail to His disciples, 
and (6) how, if He did so, they could have remained so obtuse as 
they are consistently represented to have been in the narrative 
(see ix 45, xviii 34, xxiv 18-27). Edersheim, L. and T. ii 86 sqq., 
suggests that the language of this first Prediction may reflect 
something of the Evangelists later experience. The Evangelists 
wrote it down in plain language, as fully taught them by later 
experience, that He was to be rejected by the Rulers of Israel, 
slain, and to rise again the third day. And there can be as little 
doubt that Christ s language (as afterwards they looked back upon 
it) must have clearly implied all this, as that at the time they did 
not fully understand it. 

If the mention of the Cross comes strangely early (but cf . v 35 
note) St Matthew mentions it, x 35, in the commission to the 
Twelve, St Luke first here (unless we are to reckon the allusion in 
v 35) we must remember how common a sight it must have been, 
under Roman rule, to see a file of the condemned passing by laden 
with the instruments of their own crucifixion. So the obviously 
symbolic reference to the Cross in v. 23 may have blinded the 
disciples eyes to the literal meaning of the Lord s prediction here. 
They perhaps took it as a vivid symbolic picture of an official 
rejection of His teaching and claims, followed by a swift revival 
and triumph. 

23. // any man would come after me : If any man wills to 
come like St John s If any man willeth to do his will (vii 17). 
The saying is definitely addressed to all, and is not a counsel of 
perfection for the few. 

let him deny himself, and fake up his cross daily. The last word, 
4 daily, is peculiar to Luke. Matthew gives the rest (x 38, 39) at 
the commission of the Twelve, Mark here. 

To take up one s Cross may have been a proverbial expression 
(cf. last note). He has not yet mentioned crucifixion. 

24. save his life, &c. : by cowardice and self-seeking will have 
no life left worth having. 

1X24-28] ST LUKE 129 

lose Ms life : a fuller expression of the deny himself of v. 23 ; 
real self-abnegation by absorption in the loyalty of following Christ. 

The martyr-spirit -whether it be actually called to martyrdom 
or not is the victorious spirit. He who gives all, wins all. Self- 
giving is the Divine law of life, for God is Love (1 Jn iv 16), and 
therefore of blessedness ; and by self-surrender we find our true 
selves. Cf. 2 Tim ii 11-13. 

25. what is a man profited ? The Parable of the Rich Fool 
(xii 16-21) is a comment on this saying. 

26. 27. The announcement of the Second Advent in glory 
(couched in familiar terms habitually applied by Jewish apocalypse 
to the coming of the Messiah) appropriately follows the Prediction 
of the Passion ; even as the similar utterance recorded by St Mat 
thew (xxvi 64) is made at the moment of His condemnation by the 

27. some of them that stand here. There is a similar saying in the 
great Eschatological Discourse (xxi 32), This generation shall not 
pass away, till all things be accomplished ; and St Matthew gives 
one of apparently like import earlier in the charge to the Twelve 
(x 23), Ye shall not have gone through the cities of Israel, till the 
Son of man be come a verse rendered famous by the use made 
of it in Schweitzer s Quest of the Historical Jesus. These sayings are 
not very easy to justify from the point of view of subsequent history j 
and many have been led to believe that the limitations of our Lord s 
manhood emphasized by Himself, in this context, in Mat xxiv 36 
( neither the Son, but the Father only ) caused in His mind 
a foreshortening of the events which were to follow His Passion. 

The three sayings quoted above (Lk ix 27, xxi 32, and Mat x 23) 
would all find a literal, if partial, fulfilment in that Advent for 
Judgement which is represented by the Fall of Jerusalem, A. D. 70. 
The saying here is by all three Synoptists located as a prelude to 
the Transfiguration. We may (with the majority of the Christian 
Fathers) adopt this interpretation ourselves, with the proviso that 
it does not exhaust the meaning of the saying. 

The Exodus of Jesus, followed by the Descent of the Holy 
Spirit and its immediate consequences, certainly constituted a 
Coming of the Kingdom the Transfiguration was, to the three, 
an earnest and a foretaste of it. The passing of the Old Covenant, 
in A. D. 70, represented another stage, which John, and doubtless 
others (though not Peter or James), lived to see. 

(e) 28-36 The Transfiguration 

This episode is given by all three Synoptists (cf. Mat xvii 1-8, 
Mk ix 2-8), and all are in substantial agreement as to the facts, 
though it is not easy to piece together the resultant picture in all its 
details, as each Evangelist has touches of his own. The Lucan 
diction and phraseology is very marked in these verses ; the 

130 ST LUKE [1x28-34 

substantial contribution of his account is (1) that Moses and Elijah 
appeared in glory, and spake of his decease which he was about to 
accomplish at Jerusalem (v. 31), and (2) that the disciples were 
heavy with sleep and afterwards fully awake (v. 32). St Mat 
thew adds that it was (1) a luminous cloud that overshadowed 
them (v. 5), that they were sore afraid and fell on their faces 
(v. 6), and that Jesus came and touched them (v. 7) ; St Mark 
alone emphasizes the whiteness of the garment s appearance (v. 3). 

The only other clear allusion to the event is in 2 Pet i 17, 18. 
Either Peter, James, or John must have originally told the story ; 
and if it was Peter, it is tempting to suppose that, if 2 Peter as 
a whole be pseudonymous, those verses may belong to an original 
nucleus of the (admittedly later) Epistle, from the hand of the 
Apostle himself. If so it is interesting to note that the record of 
the Voice in 2 Pet i 17 corresponds most closely to St Matthew s 
version. (But see below on v. 35.) 

As to the significance of the event ; one of its principal lessons 
(cf. v. 32 and the previous Prediction of the Passion, w. 21 sqq.) 
would seem to be that in the Cross the Son of Man is glorified 
(Jn xiii 31). Plummer aptly quotes from a sermon of St Leo. 
In Trans figuratione illud principaliter agebatur ut de cordibus disci- 
pulorum scandalum crucis tolleretur. (Serm. xliv, Migne, P.L. 
liv 310.) 

For an eloquent and graphic description of the scene see 
Edersh. L. and T. (Bk iv, ch 1), vol. ii, pp. 91 sqq., esp. 93-98. 
Also Ruskin, Modern Painters, Part V, ch xx : The Mountain 

28 And it came to pass about eight days after these sayings, 
he took with him Peter and John and James, and went up 
into the mountain to pray. 29 And as he was praying, the 
fashion of his countenance was altered, and his raiment 
became white and dazzling. 30 And behold, there talked with 
him two men, which were Moses and Elijah ; 31 who appeared 
in glory, and spake of hie 1 decease which he was about to 
accomplish at Jerusalem. 32 Now Peter and they that were 
with him were heavy with sleep : but 2 when they were fully 
awake, they saw his glory, and the two men that stood with 
him. 33 And it came to pass, as they were parting from him, 
Peter said unto Jesus, Master, it is good for us to be here : 
and let us make three 3 tabernacles ; one for thee, and one for 
Moses, and one for Elijah : not knowing what he said. 34 And 
while he said these things, there came a cloud, and over- 

1 Or, departure J Or, having remained awake a Or, booths 

lXaS-30] ST LUKE 131 

shadowed them : and they feared as they entered into the 
cloud. 35 And a voice came out of the cloud, saying, This is 
J my Son, my chosen : hear ye him. 36 And when the voice 
2 came, Jesus was found alone. And they held their peace, 
and told no man in those days any of the things which they 
had seen. 

1 Many ancient authorities read my beloved Son. See Mat xvii 5 ; Mk ix 7. 

2 Or, was past 

28. about eight days : six days in Matthew and Mark. Luke 
adds in the extremes (cf . after three days of the Resurrection 
i. e. from Friday evening till Sunday morning). A week s pause for 
meditation on the teaching of ix 21-27, in the beautiful neighbour 
hood of Caesarea Philippi, at the foot of Mt. Hermon. 

Peter and John and James. See note on viii 51. 

into the mountain. Not Tabor, in the plain of Esdraelon, for it 
had a village at the top, which Josephus subsequently fortified 
against Vespasian (B. J. IV i 8) ; yet the tradition of Tabor (found 
in Cyril of Jerusalem xii 16) is so strong in the East that the Feast 
of August 6 is called TO 6a/3wpiov. Matthew and Mark both specify 
a high mountain. Hermon, the snowy height that dominates the 
whole of Palestine, is almost certainly the mountain, though we 
cannot suppose that they made the elaborate Alpine ascent to one 
of the highest peaks something like 9,200 feet up. The text says 
into the mountain. 

28, 29. to pray . . . as he was praying. Only (and characteristically) 
in St Luke. Prayer had given Him the vision of the Holy Dove, 
and the first Voice (iii 21 sq.), prayer was to give Him the vision 
of the angel in Gethsemane (xxii 43) ; here, at the climax and 
middle point of His Ministry, it is to give Him an earnest of the 
post-resurrection glory that which He declined, as premature, in 
the Temptation (cf. note on iv 9). 

the fashion of his countenance was altered. Matthew and Mark 
give phrases corresponding to metamorphosis, which Luke the 
Gentile naturally avoids, because of the pagan associations of that 
word. Matthew adds his face shone as the sun. 

his raiment. An instance of the power of spirit over matter 
familiar to all spiritualists. The spiritual visitants at the sepulchre 
appear as two men in dazzling apparel (xxiv 4) and so too the 
angels of the Ascension (Ac i 10). 

30. two men, which were Moses and Elijah. The word translated 
which (omves) may mean such that they were (i. e. who 
obviously were ), or who (though the disciples did not realize it 
at the moment), as a matter of fact, were. 

They represent respectively the Law and the Prophets. It is 
perhaps not without significance that of each it should have been 
recorded that he fasted forty days in solitude on, or near, the 


132 ST LUKE [ix 30-33 

Mount of God (Ex xxiv 18, 1 Kgs xix 8). F. J. Badcock (J.T.S., 
July 1921) suggests that it was really Moses and John the Baptist 
who appeared the first and last of the Prophets. Cf . Mat xi 13,14, 
Mk ix 11-13. 

31. spake of his decease : His exodus (IoSos) or going 
forth. Plummer notices how in Ac xiii 24, in his record of St Paul s 
sermon at Antioch in Pisidia, Luke uses the corresponding word 
eto-oSos coming in of His first Advent proclaimed by John. 
Mystically the triumph through death which He * accomplished at 
Jerusalem is the antitype of that Exodus which the Passover 
feast commemorated. Christ our Passover is the burden of the 
Easter Psalm. 

32. heavy with sleep. Is this verse added to explain what 
happened before the Vision ? It is very natural if we suppose, with 
Edersheim, that they began their ascent after sunset on the Friday 
and arrived in full night. Here there is no reproach from Christ, as 
to the three when heavy with sleep in Gethsemane (Lk xxii 46). 

when they were fully awake : literally (cf. R.V. margin) having 
remained awake. It may be interpreted that they fought the drowsi 
ness, and saw the Vision between sleeping and waking. 

they saw his glory. So 2 Pet i 17 ; cf . Jn i 14. The Fourth 
Evangelist does not mention this great event ; but neither does he 
refer to many another undisputed episode. Presumably he had 
nothing to add or to correct. But there is an atmosphere of the 
Transfiguration pervading his entire Gospel, from i 14 onwards. 

33. as they were parting from him. Luke, only, explains Peter s 
eagerness. Papini (p. 351) suggests that this disappearance of 
Moses and Elijah shows them no longer needed. Cf. the hear ye 
him of v. 35. 

Peter said . . . Master. The word (cTrio-rcn-a) which seems to have 
been habitual with him (see on viii 45). 

it is good for us to be here. Words echoed by the devout retreatant 
as his spiritual exercise draws to a close. 

three tabernacles : booths of branches such as were constructed 
for the Feast of Tabernacles in September. For Christ s attendance 
at the Feast this year see x 38 (Jn vii ix). Hermon is well wooded 
on its slopes, and there is brushwood quite near the summit (Edersh., 
p. 95), though perhaps Peter did not stay to consider practical 

one for thee . . . Moses . . . Elijah. At this stage, it is clear Peter 
must have realized (see on v. 30) who the Lord s attendants were, 
for these words are identical in all three accounts. His instinct is 
to be helpful under the new conditions : his first thought is to be 
of service. . . . An Alpine guide would have spoken in much the 
same way. Latham, Pastor Pastorum, p. 248. 

not knowing what he said. Mark supports this with he wist not 
what to answer. If, with Tertullian, we could interpret this of a 
rapt ecstasy, it would go far to provide a naturalistic explanation 

1X33-36] ST LUKE 133 

of the whole episode . Peter presumably the divulger of the story 
- was confessedly beside himself at the time ! But, according to his 
story (of. plur. in 2 Pet i 17, 18), all three saw and heard ; and 
Luke, who distinguishes the variety of effect of the vision at 
St Paul s conversion (Ac ix 7), says nothing of it here. 

Clearly there was something of spiritual exaltation such would 
be necessary for the three to see what was there to be seen but 
not so much, or of such a kind, as to stamp the story as entirely 
subjective. A God-given vision granted to all three at once, and 
helped by telepathic communion with the spirit of their Master, 
represents, perhaps, the kind of subjectivity that is permissible. 

34. a cloud. In all three narratives this cloud Matthew 
describes it as a luminous cloud interrupts Peter s request. 
From the language of the other two we might have supposed that 
the cloud simply enveloped the three celestial figures. This was 
not Luke s interpretation, as is clear from the next clause. 

they feared as they entered into the cloud. Mark puts the fear 
before the coming of the cloud ; Matthew after, at the sound of the 
Voice. Here it would seem to denote a foreboding of the super 
natural such as might thrill any imaginative person entering a 
mountain- cloud at night ; but would be intensified by the unique 

35. a voice : as at the Baptism (iii 22). The three records may 
be tabulated as follows : 

(a) Mk (ix 6), This is my beloved Son : hear ye him ; 
(6) Lk (ix 39), This is my Son, my chosen : hear ye him ; 

(c) Mat (xvii 5), This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well 

pleased : hear ye him. 

To which may be added (though its independent value is very 
doubtful) : 

(d) 2 Pet (i 18), This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well 


(d) is a repetition of the Voice at Baptism, and (c) incorporates 
a phrase from that passage. The fact that the affinity between the 
two utterances would be obvious to all corroborates the divergence of 
Mark and Luke from the earlier utterance. If, with D (Codex Bezae), 
we accept in iii 22 the reading Thou art my beloved Son, this 
day I have begotten thee, the divergence becomes still more marked. 

If we are to choose, it would be natural to regard (a) and (6) 
as representing the truest record, and in (c) find an assimilation to 
Mat iii 17. The words Hear ye him are distinctive of this occasion, 
and fundamental. They mark Jesus out (not Moses, or Elijah) as 
the last Voice to be listened to. Had the confidence of the disciples 
been shaken by the disclosures of ix 22 sqq. ? 

36. And when the voice came, Jesus was found alone. R.V. marg. 
is probably right on the point of grammar After the voice was 
past. Mark (ix 8) is much more vivid : And suddenly looking 
round about, they saw no one any more, save Jesus only. Matthew 

134 ST LUKE [1X37-43 

also (xvii 7, 8) adds something they had fallen on their faces for 
fear, he says, when the Voice came And Jesus came and touched 
them and said, Arise and be not afraid. And lifting up their eyes, 
they saw no one, save Jesus only. 

they . . . told no man. Matthew and Mark say that Jesus on the 
way down commanded them to keep it secret till the Son of Man 
be risen from the dead. 

(f) 37^13 The Epileptic Boy (Trench, Mir., pp. 334-345) 

The transition from the Mount of Transfiguration to the depress 
ing and squalid scene below is one of the most dramatic in the 
Gospels, and has been a favourite subject of Christian Art, where 
the three Apostles are usually depicted as fast asleep (v. 32). The 
most famous is Rafael s great picture at the Vatican, on which 
his last working hours were spent, and which was carried at his 
funeral before its colours were dry (Poynter, Classic and Italian 
Painting, p. 161). He depicts the Transfiguration above, and the 
episode of the Epileptic Boy below. Plummer aptly suggests that 
we may see here three scenes : (a) Christ and the saints in glory ; 
(b) the chosen three, blinded by the light ; (c) the remaining nine 
baffled by the power of darkness (p. 254). Cf. also Jameson, Hist, 
of 0. L., vol. i, pp. 342 sqq. 

The rude shock of life below comes home to every priest who 
after a Retreat has had to make a sudden plunge into the more 
sordid side of pastoral work. Happy he with whom the Master 
descends, as here, to set things right ! 

37 And it came to pass, on the next day, when they were 
come down from the mountain, a great multitude met him. 
38 And behold, a man from the multitude cried, saying, 
blaster, I beseech thee to look upon my son ; for he is mine 
only child : 39 and behold, a spirit taketh him, and he 
suddenly crieth out ; and it 2 teareth him that he foameth, 
and it hardly departeth from him, bruising him sorely. 40 And 
I besought thy disciples to cast it out ; and they could not. 
41 And Jesus answered and said, O faithless and perverse 
generation, how long shall I be with you, and bear with you ? 
bring hither thy son. 42 And as he was yet a coming, the 
3 devil Mashed him down, and ^are him grievously. But Jesus 
rebuked the unclean spirit, and healed the boy, and gave him 
back to his father. 43 And they were all astonished at the 
majesty of God. 

1 Or, Teacher 2 Or, convulseth 3 Gr. demon. 

* Or, rent him 5 Or, convulsed 

1X37-40] ST LUKE 135 

37. a great multitude. As Moses, descending from Mt. Sinai, 
hears the discordant shouts of the idolaters, so our Lord is welcomed 
by the wrangling voices of the crowd : and doubtless, like Moses, 
He had premonition of what He had to face (cf. Ex xxxii 17 sqq.). 

38. a man . . . cried . . . Master. Not St Peter s word (v. 33) but 
the usual Teacher (StSaovcaAe). The man probably said Rabbi. 
Mark has Luke s word ; Matthew Lord (/cvpie). 

mine only child. Luke loves these touches of pathos : cf. his 
account of the Widow s son (vii 12) and Jaiirus daughter (viii 42). 

39. he suddenly crieth out . . . and it hardly departeth from him, 
bruising him sorely. Hobart (op. cit., pp. 17-20) claims that these 
phrases, together with the look upon of the preceding verse 
which represent St Luke s additions to the Marcan account (Mk ix 
17 sqq.), with the foaming common to both are medical expres 
sions, and Harnack (op. cit., pp. 186 sqq.) remarks that they eluci 
date the description of the disease by telling of symptoms that are 
characteristic of epilepsy. On the other hand, Cadbury (Style and 
Lit. Method of St Luke, p. 48) dwells on the omission of such 
symptoms as deafness, dumbness, grinding of the teeth, pining 
away, falling and rolling, death-like coma on the ground, and 
points out that Luke has no reference, here or in viii 26 sqq., to the 
self-destructive tendency indicated in the parallel passages of 
the second Gospel (Mk v 5, ix 22). Nor does he mention here the 
question and answer (Mk ix 21) as to the duration of the disease. 
A comparison, however, of the second and third Gospels here makes 
it almost certain that Luke had not seen the passage in Mark, but 
was drawing on an independent source. (See Dr V. Bartlet s con 
vincing argument in Oxf. Stud., p. 343.) 

Among Luke s unaccountable omissions (if he had seen Mk ix 
21-27) are the father s memorable words, I believe ; help thou 
mine unbelief. If that be so, we may perhaps place St Luke s 
additions to his credit without expecting him to add all the details 
of a source which (however interesting its details would have been 
to him) he had not seen. 

Professor Cadbury s argument, however, suggests caution and 
restraint in the application of the Medical Language test. 

Hobart s reference to Aretaeus (loc. cit.) is applicable to all three 
accounts. He notes that that eminent physician, probably a con 
temporary of St Luke, in treating of epilepsy, admits the possi 
bility of this disease being produced by demoniacal possession. 
Trench (Mir., p. 393) quotes Paulus Aegineta, the last of the great 
physicians of the old world, on epilepsy (iii 13) : a description 
remarkably like this, in which the Lucan crying out and foaming 
are prominent. 

40. they could not. They were deprived of their Master and of 
their three leading colleagues. Yet they had been given experience 
in the recent Mission (ix 1 ; devils, however, are not mentioned in 
ix 6, as they are later in the case of the Seventy, x 17). Can it be 

136 ST LUKE [!X 4 i-43 

that lack of confidence bred a lack of unanimity as to the methods 
to be employed ? A fatal obstacle as modern psychic experience 
would show to the successful action of spirit upon spirit. 

41. faithless and perverse generation. Addressed, clearly, not 
to the disciples, but to the multitude. Cf. the similar sad protest 
in Jn viii 25 (R..V. marg.). It suggests a plot of Christ s enemies to 
strike a blow at Him through His disciples in His absence. The man 
came, without right faith, impelled by the crowd ; the crowd (ulti 
mately instigated by the hostile group), partly out of curiosity, partly 
in the hope of demonstrating a flaw in the working of these boasted 
cures. Nothing but an overwhelming force of faithful prayer (Mk 
ix 29, Mat xvii 20) could avail in so unsympathetic an atmosphere. 

42. the devil dashed him down. Mark (ix 20) tells us that the 
boy wallowed foaming on the ground, and after the exorcism 
became as one dead ; insomuch that the more part said, He is 
dead, and that Jesus took him by the hand, and raised him up. 

gave him back to his father. Characteristic of St Luke (cf. vii 15). 
Characteristically again, he omits (if it was in his source) the rebuke 
to the disciples implied in Mk ix 29 and expressed in Mat xvii 20. 
So he omits the rebuke to Peter after the Great Confession, and the 
fact that all forsook Him at the arrest. See further, note ix 20. 

43 a . the majesty of God. St Luke constantly makes note of the 
vivid impression made on those who witnessed the works and 
listened to the words of Jesus ; e. g. v 9, 15, vi 11, xiii 17, xviii 37, 
xx 26, and especially the way they praised God for these works, 
vii 16, xviii 43, xix 37. See Adeney, ad. loc., and Hawkins in Oxf. 
Stud., p. 87. 

(g) 44-50 Second Prediction of the Passion ; Competition 
within and without the Twelve 

43 b -45. SECOND PREDICTION OF THE PASSION. See note on v. 22. 

But while all were marvelling at all the things which he 
did, he said unto his disciples, 44 Let these words sink into 
your ears : for the Son of man shall be delivered up into the 
hands of men. 45 But they understood not this saying, and 
it was concealed from them, that they should not perceive it : 
and they were afraid to ask him about this saying. 

43 b . But while all were marvelling. The other two Synoptists 
(Mk ix 31, Mat xvii 22) definitely disconnect what follows from the 
preceding incident, prefacing this prediction with while they abode 
in Galilee. With Luke the connexion is clear and purposeful, a 
desire to correct in the disciples minds the false impression suggested 
by the enthusiasm of the crowd. Their human instinct would be 
to let this efface the memory of the former prediction, with its 
haunting associations, and hark back to the sunny days of unalloyed 

1X43-48] ST LUKE 137 

44. Let these words sink into your ears. A Hebraism, emphatically 
calling for attention. Just now men seem enthusiastically loyal ; 
but make no mistake : it is into the hands of men that I am to be 
given up. The word for delivered up is the identical word used 
of Judas transaction in xxii 4. It forms the common feature in 
the three accounts of this second Prediction. Matthew and Mark 
add (as in the first Prediction) reference to the Death and Resurrec 
tion. Perhaps Luke (or his source) is right, and the addition (in 
Matthew and Mark) is a case of assimilation. 

45. But they understood not . . . perceive it. An intensely Hebraic 
pleonasm such as the Gentile Evangelist would hardly have invented 
for himself. This again argues (cf. Dr V. Bartlet, Oxf. Stud., p. 321) 
a non-Marcan source. The verse is almost exactly reproduced in 
xviii 34 at the third and fullest Prediction of the Passion. 

it was concealed from them. St Luke sees in their dullness some 
thing providential or purposeful. Compare our Lord s words in 
Jn xvi 4 : These things have I spoken to you, that when their hour is 
come, ye may remember them, how that I told you . The unintelligible 
but remembered saying acquired an evidential value afterwards, and 
they realized the open-eyed and voluntary self-sacrifice of their 

afraid : in Mat xvii 23 were exceeding sorry. They shrank 
from the possibility of more unwelcome disclosures. Mark has 
(as here) they were afraid to ask him. Why ? There may have 
been in the original source a record of the rebuke to Peter which 
Mark records (Mk ix 33) though Luke does not. On Luke s 
tendency to spare the Twelve, see note on ix 20. 

strife for pre-eminence (vv. 46-48), and the unattached disciple 
(w. 49, 50). 

Here again St Luke is following the Marcan sequence (Mk ix 
33 sqq.), though in Mark the second incident is followed by a longer 
discourse. Matthew interposes the episode of the Temple-tribute 
(xvii 24-27) before that of the little child, following the latter up by 
(a) a discourse on offending the little ones, and (b) a second on 
forgiveness, clinched by the Parable of the Unmerciful Servant 
(xviii 6-35). 

46 And there arose a reasoning among them, which of 
them should be ^eatest. 47 But when Jesus saw the reason 
ing of their heart, he took a little child, and set him by his 
side, 48 and said unto them, Whosoever shall receive this 
little child in my name receiveth me : and whosoever shall 
receive me receiveth him that sent me : for he that is 2 least 
among you all, the same is great. 

1 Gr. greater. 2 Gr. lesser. 

138 ST LUKE [IX 46-50 

46. which of them should be greatest. In Mk ix 33 sqq. the cir 
cumstances are more vividly narrated. As they enter Capernaum 
after a journey, our Lord shames them by asking what they had been 
reasoning about on the way. It was this dispute. St Luke completes 
the picture when he says that Jesus 

47. saw the reasoning of their heart : cf . v 22 and Jn ii 25. He 
read their thoughts from their flushed and excited faces, though 
the actual quarrel was over. 

The contentious ambition here described was intimately con 
nected with their slowness to take up the lesson of the Cross. The 
other Synoptists (Mat xx 20-28, Mk x 35-45) relate a special 
instance of this ambition in the sons of Zebedee, on the last journey 
up to Jerusalem ; Luke (who omits this : cf . note on ix 20) alone 
tells how the same spirit intruded even into the sacred atmosphere 
of the Last Supper (xxii 24 sqq.), where he introduces much of the 
lessons of Mk x 35-45. 

he took a little child. The youngest and least imposing of His 
followers. A ninth-century tradition identifies him with Ignatius, 
afterwards Bishop of Antioch, martyred under Trajan, whose 
extant epistles are among the most precious documents of early 
Christian literature. 

set him by his side. Matthew adds that He called him unto him, 
and Mark says He took him in his arms. To sit beside Him was 
the privilege coveted by James and John (Mat xx 21) or by their 
mother for them. St Luke does not, like St Matthew, collect 
various sayings about children here, but see x 21, xvii 2, xviii 15. 

48. Whosoever shall receive this little child, &c. Matthew gives 
the substance of this verse earlier, in the charge to the Twelve, x 42 
( give . . . one of these little ones ... in the name of a disciple ) and 
x 40 ( he that receiveth me . . . ). Mk ix 37 is more emphatic 
and characteristic : receiveth not me, but him that sent me. 

The lesson is that true dignity lies in humble service to the 
apparently insignificant : and that to welcome a little child for 
Christ s sake is to welcome the Eternal Father. 

him that sent me : though found in all three Synoptists, is more 
characteristic of the fourth Gospel (Jn iv 34, v 20, vi 38). It 
expresses at once His union with the Father, His humble obedience, 
and His sense of Mission. 

49. 50. THE UNATTACHED DISCIPLE. St Matthew omits this 
incident and substitutes Peter s difficulties with his brother, and 
the lessons on Forgiveness (xviii 15 sqq.). St Mark (ix 38 sqq.) is 
parallel to St Luke, with only verbal differences. 

49 And John answered and said, Master, we saw one 
casting out 1 devils in thy name ; and we forbade him, because 
he followeth not with us. 50 But Jesus said unto him, Forbid 
him not : for he that is not against you is for you. 

1 Gr. demons. 

IX 49-si] ST LUKE 139 

49. John answered and said : answered is peculiar to Luke, 
and by it he seems to connect this incident causally with the fore 
going. John had on his mind an incident of the recent mission, 
when he and his companion, James, had forbidden an exerciser, 
not of the band, who was (it would seem successfully) using the 
name of Jesus. The phrase in my name (v. 48), and the exhorta 
tion to receive the humblest and most unlikely follower, renews his 
disquiet of conscience ; so he honestly blurts out his confession, 
and exposes his past action to the Master s criticism. 

Master (eTrio-Tara). See note on viii 24. 

50. Jesus said unto him. As in v. 58, there is no tone of rebuke 
or censure. 

Forbid him not. Clearly the man had been acting in a spirit 
quite different from that of the Jewish exorcists who presumed to 
use the Name at Ephesus, and whose discomfiture is described by 
Luke in Ac xix 13-16. 

he that is not against you is for you. With this generous saying, 
of which the converse and complement is given in xi 23, closes the 
first main part of the Gospel. With the next verse our Evangelist 
starts as it were a pioneer journey without the companionship of 
his fellow Synoptists. 



[It is doubtful whether the section should not conclude at xviii 14. 

See below.] 

The bulk of the matter contained in this long section has no 
parallel in the other Gospels ; and it may be claimed (cf . Hawkins, 
Oxf. Stud., p. 59) that here the Evangelist entirely disuses his 
Marcan source as a direct authority, though minor parallels with 
the first Gospel are not infrequent, especially in chapters xi and xii 
passages which appear in St Matthew in an entirely different order, 
and range from Mat vi to Mat xxv. 

These 350 verses are called The Great Insertion, because they 
have the appearance of being inserted (somewhere about Mk x 1) 
between the two Marcan narratives of the Galilean Ministry and 
the Passion. 

Not only is this section, as a whole, peculiar to St Luke, but some 
of its most notable items like the Parable of the Good Samaritan 
(x 29-37) and the episode of the Ten Lepers (xvii 11-19) are 
intensely Lucan in style and phraseology (see V. H. Stanton, The 
Gospels as Historical Documents, ii, pp. 227 sqq.). 

It is noticeable also that the parables here are, in the main, not 
Parables of the Kingdom, but moral and spiritual lessons addressed 
primarily to the individual : and that in their telling there is less 

140 ST LUKE [iXsi-xiX27 

of the imagery of external Nature, and more of human emotions 
and motives, inner debatings and actions, which are vividly de 
scribed (ib. 231). The apparent exception is the Barren Fig-tree 
(xiii 6-9) ; but here also the conversations between the proprietor 
and the gardener form a marked feature (ib.). 

The Great Insertion proper may be said to end at xviii 14, 
where St Luke converges once more on the synoptic tradition in 
the incident of the Little Children (cf . Mat xix 13-15, Mk x 13-16) ; 
but the following 55 verses still contain a large proportion of exclu 
sively Lucan matter, and are more conveniently attached to this 
section by way of analysis. 

As it stands, the section purports to be a record of the last part 
of the Saviour s earthly ministry from the moment when He finally 
set His face towards Jerusalem to the time of His entry into that 
city on Palm Sunday. 

Notes of time appear (xi 27, 37, 53, xii 1, 13, xiii 1, 31, &c.) 
linking one paragraph to another, and there are recurrent allusions 
to journeying or journey ings toward the Holy City (ix 51, 57, 
x 38, xiii 22, xiv 25, xvii 11). 

Many think that these allusions are an arbitrary literary device, 
by which the Evangelist finds room, in an apparently historical 
framework, for a mass of undated matter which he has collected. 
Others (as Wendt and Weiszacker ap. V. H. Stanton, op. cit. ii, 
p. 227, and V. Bartlet hi Oxf. Stud.) suppose that St Luke was 
drawing mainly on a documentary source : either the source 
common to him and St Matthew (Q) or, as Weiszacker conjectures, 
a fuller document in which Q and another MS had already been 
combined. Dr Bartlet (Oxf. Stud., pp. 351 sqq., cf. Dr Sanday, 
p. xxxi) argues from the marked Samaritan references (ix 52, 
x 33, xvii 11 sqq.) and other indications that much may have 
come from the household of Philip the Evangelist at Caesarea (see 
Introd., p. xxi). 

Dr Stanton takes a middle course, and suggests (ii 230) that 
the references to journeyings and the placing of this matter where 
it comes involve indeed something of a literary device , but that 
this manner of presenting the subject-matter commended itself 
to him as the true one. 

By this device he was able, without greatly altering the sub 
stance and arrangement of his document, consisting (as it . did) 
mainly of Sayings and Discourses, to transform it into a narrative 
of Travel, and so to fit it for inclusion into a work of history. The 
allusions to change of place could be, and in all probability were, 
introduced at points where there was a convenient break in the 
sense, so that it was natural to suppose that the teaching which 
followed was spoken on a different occasion . . . 

But there are indications that, in outline at least, the scheme 
which St Luke here presents to us not only commended itself to 
him, but was also, in certain ways, truer to the facts than he had 

ix si -xix 27] ST LUKE 141 

the opportunity to demonstrate to us. St Luke here, as elsewhere, 
forms the link between the Synoptists and the fourth Gospel. (See 
Introd., p. xxiv sq., and notes on xxii 32 and 37.) 

We have attempted, in spite of Dr Plummer s note (Commentary, 
p. 261), to bring out the full value of the hints in Lk x 38 and xiii 
31 sqq., and to place them in line with the indications in St John, who 
records, between the Feeding of the Five Thousand and the Passion, 
at least two visits to Jerusalem : (a) at the Feast of Tabernacles 
(Jn vii 1 x 21), and (6) at the Feast of Dedication (Jn x 22-42). 
The visit to Bethany recorded in Jn xi necessarily implies previous 
familiarity with Martha and Mary, and so corroborates St Luke s 
account (x 38 sqq.) of an earlier visit to them. 

The very vagueness of our Evangelist s references to time and 
place witnesses, as Dr Plummer notes (ad loc.), to his honesty. He 
will not advance in definiteness beyond what his authorities justify. 
The general parallel with the scheme of the fourth Gospel, and in 
particular the striking congruity of his picture of the two Sisters 
of Bethany (though he seems not to know the name of their village), 
suggests historical accuracy ; while the mass of important matter 
which he has collected in this section testifies to his industry. Thus 
internal evidence is not lacking that in these chapters he has re 
deemed the promise of his dedicatory preface (i 1-4). 
The section ix 51 xix 27 may be analysed as follows : 

(1) ix 51 x 42. From the conclusion of the Galilean Ministry to 

the visit to Bethany (Feast of Tabernacles, Sept. A. D. 29 : 
Jn vii ix). 

(2) xi 1 xiii 35. From the visit to Bethany to the Lament over 

Jerusalem (Feast of Dedication, Dec. A. D. 29 : Jn xi 22). 

(3) xiv 1 xvii 10. From the Lament over Jerusalem to the Pil 

grimage up to the Last Passover. 

(4) xvii 11 xix 27. The last Peraean Mission and Journey up to 

the Passover of the Passion. 

(1) First Period of the Journeyings 

(a) ix 51-56. James and John rebuked. 

(b) ix 57-62. Candidates for Discipleship. 

(c) x 1-20. The Mission of the Seventy. 

(d) x 21-24. The Joy of the Lord. 

(e) x 25-37. The Lawyer s Question : Parable of the Good 

(/) x 38^2. Mary and Martha. 

(2) Second Period of the Journeyings 

(a) xi 1-13. Instruction on Prayer. 

(6) xi 14-26. Exorcism of a devil, and teaching thereon. 

(c) xi 27-28. True Blessedness. 

(d) xi 29-36. The Demand for a Sign. 

(e) xi 37-54:. Denunciation of Pharisees and Lawyers. 



[IX 5 1 -XIX 27 

(/) xii 1-12. Frankness and Fear. 

(g) xii 13-21. Warning against Covetousness : Parable of the 

Rich Fool. 

(h) xii 22-34. Warning against Anxiety. 

(i) xii 35-48. Readiness and Stewardship, 

(j) xii 49-59. The First Advent and the Signs of the Times. 

(k) xiii 1-9. The Lesson of Calamities : the Barren Fig-tree. 

(1) xiii 10-17. Healing of the Infirm Woman. 

(m) xiii 18-21. Parables of the Leaven and the Mustard Seed. 

(n) xiii 22-30. Who will be saved ? 

(o) xiii 31-35. Answer to the Warning about Herod. 

(3) Third Period of the Journeyings 

(a) xiv 1-24. Earthly and Heavenly Feasts Humility and 
Precedence True Hospitality Parable of 
the Great Supper. 

(6) xiv 25-35. On Counting the Cost. 

(c) xv 1-32. Seeking the Lost The Lost Sheep (3-7), the 

Lost Coin (8-10), the Lost Son (11-32). 

(d) xvi 1-18. Parable of the Unjust Steward : Pharisaic 

Scoffers rebuked. 

(e) xvi 19 xvii 4. Parable of Dives and Lazarus : Responsi 

bility for Others. 
(/) xvii 5-10. Instruction on Faith and Humility. 

(4) Fourth Period of the Journeyings 

(a) xvii 11-19. Healing of the Ten Lepers. 
(6) xvii 20-37. The Coming of the Kingdom : The Days of the 
Son of Man. 

(c) xviii 1-17. Prayer and Humility : The Importunate 

Widow, the Pharisee and the Publican, the 
Little Child. 

(d) xviii 18-30. The Rich Ruler s Question : Riches and the 


(e) xviii 31-34. Fuller Prediction of the Passion. 
(/) xviii 35-43. The Blind Man at Jericho. 

(g) xix 1-10. The Incident of Zacchaeus. 
(h) xix 11-27. The Parable of the Pounds. 

(1) IX 51 X 42 First Period of the Journeyings : from 
the conclusion of the Galilean Ministry to the Visit to 

This section includes the important narrative of the Mission of 
the Seventy, and it is more than probable (cf. Dr Bartlet, Oxf. Stud., 
pp. 344-346) that its facts were ultimately derived from a member 
or members of that band possibly St Philip (see note on x 1). 

IX si-56] ST LUKE 143 

Dr Bartlet thinks St Luke had it already in documentary form, 
and certainly there seem to be traces of an Aramaic or Hebrew 

(a) IX 51-56 The Churlish Samaritans ; James and John 


51 And it came to pass, when the days J were well-nigh 
come that he should be received up, he stedfastly set his face 
to go to Jerusalem, 52 and sent messengers before his face : 
and they went, and entered into a village of the Samaritans, 
to make ready for him. 53 And they did not receive him, 
because his face was as though he were going to Jerusalem. 
54 And when his disciples James and John saw this, they 
said, Lord, wilt thou that we bid fire to come down from 
heaven, and consume them 2 ? 55 But he turned, and 
rebuked them 3 . 56 And they went to another village. 

1 Gr. were being fulfilled. * Many ancient authorities add even as Elijah did. 

3 Some ancient authorities add and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit 
ye are of. Some, but fewer, add also For the Son of man came not to destroy men s 
lives, but to save them. 

51. when the days were well-nigh come that he should be received 
up. This phrase introduces the mass of new material which St Luke 
is about to incorporate. It is Aramaic in character, and corresponds 
to Ac ii 1 (eV TO) <rvfjL7r\.r)pov(r6a.L). Here, however, an interval 
must be posited ; and the record seems to demand a period of some 

received up. It is the word used of the Ascension in the appendix 
to the second Gospel (avaXr/fjuf/is, cf. Mk xvi 19), and three times 
in the first chapter of the Acts (i 2, 11, 22). It is significant that the 
Evangelist (or his source ) looks beyond the Crucifixion and even 
the Resurrection. 

he stedfastly set his face. Another Hebraism, frequent in Ezekiel 
(nine times, vi 2, xx 46, xxi 2, &c.). Cf . next verse before his face. 

52. messengers : from among the disciples. A tentative measure, 
leading up to the Mission of the Seventy (x 1), who are also sent 
before his face, to herald His coming. Possibly it is a precaution, 
in anticipation of some such difficulty as is described in the next 

a village of the Samaritans. The Samaritans are here first named 
by St Luke, who mentions them three times in the Gospel (here, 
x 33, and xvii 16) to St Matthew s once (x 5, where the Twelve 
are forbidden to visit Samaritan cities) ; and also in Ac viii records 
the conversion of Samaria at St Philip s preaching. Hence the 
conjecture that St Luke owes his special knowledge of, and interest 

144 ST LUKE [IX 53-60 

in, Samaritans to St Philip, whose guest we know he was (Ac xxi 
8-10) for many days. 

53. because his face was as though ... A Hebraism, lit. His 
face was going. The Samaritans, to whom He was willing to give 
this second opportunity after the genuine welcome He had received 
at Sychar (Jn iv 40), exhibited the traditional (and reciprocated) 
prejudice which made the average Jew of Galilee avoid the direct 
route to Jerusalem and journey by way of Peraea, on the other 
side of Jordan. Cf . note on x 34. 

54. James and John. Boanerges, sons of thunder, was the 
Master s nickname for the brothers (Mk iii 17). Here the sons 
of thunder wish to call down the lightning. The A.V. reads : 
. . . consume them, even as Elias did ? But he turned, and rebuked 
them, and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of. For the 
Son of man is not come to destroy men s lives, but to save them. And 
they went to another village. The words italicized are deficient in 
MS authority, and evidently represent an early gloss. The first 
clause (referring to Elijah s action in 2 Kgs i 10, 12) is very much to 
the point, and was almost certainly in the minds of the questioners. 
Was the analogy of Elijah suggested to James and John by his 
appearance in ix 30 ? 

(b) 57-62 Candidates for Discipleship 

Sir John Hawkins (Oxf. Stud., p. 57) suggests that these verses 
may represent a sifting of disciples preparatory to the appointment 
of the Seventy. 

Three hesitating disciples : the first two (vv. 57-60) = Mat 
viii 19-22 ; the third (vv. 61, 62) peculiar to Luke. 

In St Matthew these episodes come quite early, after the Day 
of Miracles at Capernaum. Hawkins regards the two records as 
both from Q (Oxf. Stud., pp. 114, 123) in spite of the considerable 
variations. If so, which Evangelist has misplaced them ? 
St Matthew, who groups, and is apt to put things early (as in 
the Sermon on the Mount) ? Or has St Luke grouped two earlier 
cases with his own (vv. 61, 62) belonging to this period ? 

57 And as they went in the way, a certain man said unto 
him, I will follow thee whithersoever thou goest. 58 And 
Jesus said unto him, The foxes have holes, and the birds of 
the heaven have -^lests ; but the Son of man hath not where to 
lay his head. 59 And he said unto another, Follow me. 
But he said, Lord, suffer me first to go and bury my father. 
60 But he said unto him, Leave the dead to bury their own 
dead ; but go thou and publish abroad the kingdom of God. 

1 Gr. lodging-places. 

IX 5 7-6i] ST LUKE 145 

61 And another also said, I will follow thee, Lord ; but first 
suffer me to bid farewell to them that are at my house. 

62 But Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to 
the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God. 

57. a certain man. In St Matthew a scribe. 

58. Jesus said unto him : warning an enthusiastic volunteer of 
the hardships incident to a genuine following of Christ. Foxes have 
earths and the birds roosts. The feeble and faint-hearted are 
debarred by Deut xx 2-9 from taking part in war. 

59. he said unto another. Here our Lord takes the initiative. The 
corresponding figure in Mat viii 21 appears to be a volunteer, or 
already a disciple. 

to go and bury my father. Cf . the incident of Elisha s call, 1 Kgs 
xix 20. The man depicted here was not, like the first and third, 
a volunteer for discipleship. Jesus called him knowing his circum 
stances and he demurred. We need not suppose that his father 
was actually lying dead. He very likely meant, Let me wait till 
my aged father dies and is buried. 

60. Leave the dead . . . The proverbial form of these words 
makes them seem harsher than they really are. Respond to the 
call of a new life and mission. Like the High Priest (Lev xxi 11) 
and the Nazirite (Num vi 6, 7) he must not make himself unclean 
for his father or his mother. As Ezekiel, when on God s business 
was forbidden formal mourning for his beloved wife (Ezek xxiv 16), 
so in this case the urgency of Christ s claim outweighed the claim 
of filial piety. 

61. another also. A volunteer, like the first. St Matthew does 
not record this incident. The call is to follow at once, consistently, 
and without a backward glance. Christ may have known that 
under this apparently innocent and reasonable request lay untold 
possibilities of weakening in the man, or of wrong home-influence 
upon him. 

The second and third answers in this group seem at first sight 
to demand an unnatural uprooting of home-ties. What is rather 
meant (see note on xiv 26) is that there are claims and causes 
which must take precedence even over the claims of home. 

(c) X 1-20 The Mission of the Seventy 

Critics comparing Lk x 2-12 with Mat x 5-15 have, rather 
superficially, conjectured that St Luke has here produced a genuine 
doublet, and confusedly represented varying accounts of a single 
episode as though there were two different ones the Missions of 
the Twelve and of the Seventy. This is arbitrary, unlike St Luke s 
manner, and does not account for the phenomena. See note above 
on ix 51 sqq. 

L. 10 

146 ST LUKE [Xi-i6 

X Now after these things the Lord appointed seventy 1 
others, and sent them two and two before his face into every 
city and place, whither he himself was about to come. 2 And 
he said unto them, The harvest is plenteous, but the labourers 
are few : pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he 
send forth labourers into his harvest. 3 Go your ways : 
behold, I send you forth as lambs in the midst of wolves. 
4 Carry no purse, no wallet, no shoes : and salute no man 
on the way. 5 And into whatsoever house ye shall 2 enter, 
first say, Peace be to this house. 6 And if a son of peace be 
there, your peace shall rest upon 3 him : but if not, it shall 
turn to you again. 7 And in that same house remain, eating 
and drinking such things as they give : for the labourer is 
worthy of his hire. Go not from house to house. 8 And into 
whatsoever city ye enter, and they receive you, eat such things 
as are set before you : 9 and heal the sick that are therein, 
and say unto them, The kingdom of God is come nigh unto 
you. 10 But into whatsoever city ye shall enter, and they 
receive you not, go out into the streets thereof and say, 
11 Even the dust from your city, that cleaveth to our feet, 
we do wipe off against you : howbeit know this, that the 
kingdom of God is come nigh. 12 I say unto you, It shall 
be more tolerable in that day for Sodom, than for that city. 
13 Woe unto thee, Chorazin ! woe unto thee, Bethsaida ! for 
if the 4 mighty works had been done in Tyre and Sidon, which 
were done in you, they would have repented long ago, sitting 
in sackcloth and ashes. 14 Howbeit it shall be more tolerable 
for Tyre and Sidon in the judgement, than for you. 15 And 
thou, Capernaum, shalt thou be exalted unto heaven ? thou 
shalt be brought down unto Hades. 16 He that heareth you 
heareth me ; and he that rejecteth you rejecteth me ; and 
he that rejecteth me rejecteth him that sent me. 

1 Many ancient authorities add and two : and so in ver. 17. 

2 Or, enter first, say 3 Or, it * Gr. powers. 

1. the Lord. Cf . vii 13 and note, xi 39, xii 42, xxiv 34. 

seventy others. Thirty-five pairs, to be sent forth, as the Twelve 
had been, on a temporary Mission : not, as the appointment of the 
Twelve, a development of organization, or the constitution of an 
order. (St Luke, unlike the other Synoptists, carefully distin- 

Xi-6] ST LUKE 147 

guishes between the Call (vi 12 sqq.) and the Mission (ix 1 sqq.) of 
the Twelve.) Early conjecture made St Luke himself one of the 
Seventy, but the language of his preface (i 2) precludes the possibility 
of his having been an eyewitness. It is at least probable, however, 
that Philip the Evangelist may have been one, and have been a 
prolific source of material for these chapters (see Introd., p. xxi and 
Prelim, note on ix 51 sqq.). And it is still more probable that St Luke 
has named two of them in Joseph Barsabbas and Matthias who, as 
implied in Ac i 22, 23, had been disciples from the time of John s 
baptism onwards. In any case, in this large number Luke would 
be sure to find some of his eye-witnesses and ministers of the 
Word (cf. Hawkins, Oxf. Stud., p. 57). 

2. The harvest is plenteous. St Matthew puts this saying before 
the choosing of the Twelve. The fourth Evangelist has a saying 
of similar import uttered in Samaria, apparently four months 
before harvest (Jn iv 35-38). We may more confidently seek a note 
of time there than in the utterance given by the two Synoptists. 
But see Latham, Pastor Pastorum, pp. 477, 478. 

3. as lambs in the midst of wolves. In modern phrase : You 
take your life in your hand. That has been the case of many of 
Christ s missionaries to the heathen world in all ages. Similarly 
Mat x 16 in the Charge to the Twelve, with an added injunction 
to tactfulness. It is quite likely that St Luke may have uncon 
sciously transferred some of the points of the earlier charge to the 
later ; but it is also likely that the Master should have repeated 
Himself on two such similar occasions. St Luke evidently thinks 
so (cf. x4, 5, and 10-11 with ix 3, 4, 5). But the long charge in 
Mat x 5^42 almost certainly owes something to grouping. 

4. no purse, no wallet, no shoes. On wallet see note on ix 3. 
They are flying columns of the Lord s army and must go light- 
armed and unencumbered. The subject of this verse is, strangely, 
reproduced in xxii 35, in an intimate talk with the Twelve. The 
difficulty is at once removed, if, as Latham suggests (Pastor Pastorum, 
p. 288), the Twelve may have been included among the Seventy. 

salute no man on the way : because the King s business requireth 
haste, detachment, and concentration. Even so Elisha s servant 
was enjoined to refrain from salutations on his errand of mercy, 
2 Kgs iv 29. 

5. Peace be to this house. Natural courtesy among the Jews, 
whose commonest salutation is Peace to thee ! Christ filled this 
customary greeting with an intense new meaning when He used it 
in the Upper Room on the evening of the first Easter Day (xxiv 36). 
Here also (cf. v. 6) it is intended to be more than a mere salutation. 
Cf . the first rubric in the Prayer Book Order for the Visitation of 
the Sick. It is possible that we have an echo of the War-Law 
of Deut xx 10-19 ; cf., e. g. Deut xx 10, 11 with w. 5, 6 here 

6. a son of peace, that is, Hebraistically not (as usually inter- 


148 ST LUKE [X6-n 

preted) a peaceable. peace-loving man, but a man worthy of 
salutation (P. L.). 

it shall turn to you again. Blessings only alight where there is 
a welcome for them ; but, whether or no, they are sure to rebound 
upon him that blesseth. Literally, the phrase is graphically illus 
trated by an incident related by Petermann (Eeisen im Orient) : 
a Mohammedan Governor of the province of Nablous greeted a 
Samaritan with the usual " salam alaik " (Peace to thee), and when 
he discovered that the man was not a Mohammedan, demanded : 
" Give me back my greeting ! " The Samaritan answered, " Take 
it," and the Governor was satisfied. (P. L.) 

7. in that same house. So ix 4 (where see note) . . . for the 
labourer is worthy of his hire. This last phrase occurs in Mat x 10 
(where for hire is substituted food ), and is apparently quoted 
in 1 Tim v 18, where it is classed, apparently, with a citation from 
Deut xxv 4 as Scripture. It is hardly possible that St Paul should 
be quoting St Luke as Scripture, even if we allow the earliest 
possible date for this Gospel (see Introd., p. xx). Can he be quoting 
Q, the common source of Matthew and Luke ? Possibly it is not 
a quotation after all, but simply a current proverbial saying (or an, 
as yet, unwritten saying of Christ (cf . Ac xx 35) cited side by side 
with the passage from Deuteronomy. 

8. eat such things as are set before you. This is not in any of 
the Synoptists Charge to the Twelve. There was no likelihood that 
technically unclean meats would be offered, still less that the 
difficulties of 1 Cor viii x would confront these messengers ; yet 
the words are practically identical with those of St Paul s advice 
to the Corinthians (1 Cor x 27), and the text is cited by Sir John 
Hawkins (Hor. Syn., p. 197) as one of six instances among the 
smaller peculiarities of this Gospel which may owe their phraseology 
to the Evangelist s companionship with the Apostle (cf. Moffatt, 
Intr. Lit. N. T., p. 281). The meaning of the phrase is simple, and 
valid for all time, suggesting St Paul s I have learned the secret 
both to be filled and to be hungry, both to abound and to be in 
want (Phil iv 12). We may interpret it for ourselves : Do not 
through false modesty refuse the gifts of elaborate hospitality, nor, 
on the other hand, despise that simple fare which, after all, alone 
is " needful " (cf. note on x 42). 

9. heal the sick, &c. The twofold commission to body and soul 
which was given also to the Twelve (cf. ix 2). 

11. Even the dust . . . we do wipe off. As in the charge to the 
Twelve. See note on ix 5. Curiously, the verb here (a-n-o/jida-a-eiv) is 
different from the shake off (a-n-oTivda-o-eLv) of ix 5, and may 
point to a delicate accuracy on St Luke s part : especially as he 
uses the Marcan verb iKTivda-a-eiv (Mk vi 11) in Ac xiii 51 and xviii 6 
(cf. Oxf. Stud., p. 325). Both verbs are peculiar to St Luke and are 
found in the medical writer Galen dTro/x-ao-o-civ very frequently 
(Hobart, Med. Lang., pp. Ill and 240). 

Xn-i6] ST LUKE 149 

the kingdom of God is come, nigh. The significant words of v. 9, 
unto you, are omitted. It has come near, and you have rejected it, 
not knowing (cf. xix 44) the time of your visitation. 

12. It shall be more tolerable : cf. Mat x 15. Luke omits the 
Gomorrah of that verse. The Cities of the Plain (Gen xix 24) were 
already in the O.T. prophets proverbial instances of well-merited 
destruction (Isa i 9, xiii 19). 

13-15 are no longer parallel to St Matthew s Charge to the 
Twelve. He places these Woes after the embassy of John s 
disciples, apropos of the rejection both of the Forerunner and of 
Himself (Mat xi 20-24). 

13. Chorazin : named only here and in Mat xi 21. One of many 
places visited by our Lord of which we have no individual record 
(cf. the cities and villages of viii 1). It is conjecturally identified 
with Karazeh, about two miles due north of the Lake. 

Bethsaida : ix 10 is the only other place where the name occurs 
in this Gospel. One mighty work at least we know of, performed 
in its neighbourhood the Feeding of the Five Thousand. St Mark 
relates (in the section of Luke s Great Omission ) a remarkable 
cure of a Blind Man here (Mk viii 22) just before the journey to 
Caesarea Philippi. It is probably to be identified with Bethsaida 
Julias, so named in honour of Caesar s daughter (as Caesarea 
Philippi in honour of Caesar himself) by Herod Philip, who advanced 
it to urban dignity (Jos. Ant. XVIII ii 1). It stands on the east 
bank of Jordan where the river enters the Sea of Galilee (cf . Eder- 
sheim, L. & T. ii 75, 88). 

13, 14. Tyre and Sidon : like Sodom, in the O.T. common 
places of Divine judgement Amos ix 10, Isa xxiii, Jer xxv 22, 
Ezek xx vi and xxviii 2-24. 

15. Capernaum. Busy town as it then was, on the trade-route 
from Damascus, home of St Matthew and of the four fishermen- 
apostles, and the adopted home of Jesus in so much of His early 
Galilean Ministry (iv 23, 31, vii 1, and cf. Jn ii 12, iv 46, vi 59), its 
very site is now disputed Tell-Hum, or Khan Miniyeh ? (Cf . note 
on iv 31.) 

Is it the tender memories of boyhood that keep from His lips 
the name of the arch-rejector (iv 28 sqq.) Nazareth ? 

16. he that rejecteth . . . The words are closely paralleled in 
St Paul s solemn declaration, 1 Thess iv 8, He that rejecteth, 
rejecteth not man, but God, who giveth his Holy Spirit unto you 
(cf. Moffatt, I.L.N.T., p. 281). Here they appear to establish a 
connexion between the Discourse as a whole and vv. 13-15, which 
may in fact be displaced (see note there). As cities like Chorazin, 
Bethsaida, Capernaum have rejected Me, so you must expect to be 
rejected but the responsibility is not yours, nor does their responsi 
bility cease with their behaviour towards you. 

The complementary words He that receiveth you receiveth 
me conclude the long charge to the Twelve in Mat x 40. 

150 ST LUKE [X 17-19 

17-20. THE RETURN OF THE SEVENTY. There is the lapse of 
an unknown period implied between w. 16 and 17, and St Luke 
interposes no literary interlude as in ix 7-9 (but cf . v. 18). 

17 And the seventy returned with joy, saying, Lord, even 
the Mevils are subject unto us in thy name. 18 And he said 
unto them, I beheld Satan fallen as lightning from heaven. 
19 Behold, I have given you authority to tread upon serpents 
and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy : and 
nothing shall in any wise hurt you. 20 Howbeit in this 
rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you ; but rejoice 
that your names are written in heaven. 

1 Gr. demons. 

17. with joy : cf. Introd., p. xxxix. This is the Gospel of Joy 
par excellence. 

even the devils are subject unto us in thy name. There had been 
no specific gift of this power, as there had in the Mission of the 
Twelve (ix 1). This fact may naturally have enhanced their joyful 
surprise. Deissmann (New Light, <&c., pp. 254, 260) gives a parallel 
in the Magical Papyrus (line 3080) : There shall be subject to 
thee every spirit and daemon whatsoever. 

18. / beheld Satan fallen : (better as A.V. fall ) gives a hint 
of the Lord s occupation during their absence His thoughts and 
meditations were with them, and mirrored in their successful 
exorcisms He was continuously beholding (imperf.) the overthrow 
of the power of evil. The advance of the Kingdom is itself the fall 
of the hostile power. 

as lightning : swiftly, vividly. 

from heaven. In mediaeval times this was referred to the Fall 
of the Angels, pictured as previous to the fall of Man ; and this 
lightning descent of Satan when he fell down from heaven 
. . . cadde giii dal cielo 

plays an important part in the actual formation of the structure 
of Dante s Hell and Purgatory (Inf. xxxiv 106-126). 

Rabbinical angelology, on the contrary, placed the Fall of the 
Angels subsequent to that of Man (Edersh., L. & T. ii, App. xiii, 
p. 756). 

The reference here, however, is clearly not to any far past event, 
but to that which was happening at the time. Cf. Jn xii 31 in 
which our Lord, after the Voice from heaven, and in anticipation 
of His proximate Passion exclaims, Now shall the prince of this 
world be cast out. 

19. to tread upon serpents and scorpions, &c. This is echoed in 
the Appendix to Mark (xvi 18), and the phraseology there favours a 
literal interpretation. But here, and there also, the primary meaning 

x 19-24] ST LUKE 151 

is almost certainly spiritual conquest and spiritual immunity. The 
key to the interpretation lies in the phrase all the power of the enemy. 
Bodily immunity doubtless often follows as many a missionary 
could testify (cf. Ac xxviii 3-6) ; but it is not the principal signifi 
cation. For the metaphors compare Ps xci 13, Deut viii 15, and 
Lk xi 1, 12. Ultimately it is not bodily harm that matters ; cf. 
Plummer, who aptly quotes Justin Martyr s brave words to the 
Roman Emperors (Apol i 2), You can kill indeed, but you cannot 
hurt us. 

20. in this rejoice not . . . but rejoice, &c. The form of expression 
is characteristic of our Lord : forcible, and in a sense hyperbolic. 
It is reproduced in the address to the Daughters of Jerusalem 
(xxiii 28, where see note), Weep not for me . . . but weep . . . 
In modern language : Though you may reasonably rejoice at the 
success of your exorcisms, there is a far truer and more permanent 
subject of rejoicing. 

that your names are written in heaven : on the roll of heaven s 
citizens. The metaphor occurs in the O.T. Prophets in a possibly 
eschatological sense, e. g. Isa iv 3, Ezek xiii 9, Dan xii 1 (and cf. 
Exod xxxii 32). In the N.T. it is frequent and no longer ambiguous, 
e. g. Heb xii 23, the first-born who are enrolled in heaven, and 
Phil iii 20, our citizenship is in heaven. 

Successful exorcism, even in the Name of Jesus, is no guarantee 
of this citizenship. 

(d) 21-24 The Joy of the Lord at the Success of His followers : 
The Revelation to Babes 

There are indications that this section (cf . Mat xi 25 sqq.) may 
represent more exactly what passed at the return of the Twelve 
(cf. Dr V. Bartlet, Oxf. Stud., pp. 343 sqq.), and was derived by 
St Luke from a source other than Q, with its context not clearly 

21 In that same hour he rejoiced ^ the Holy Spirit, and 
said, I ^hank thee, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that 
thou didst hide these things from the wise and understanding, 
and didst reveal them unto babes : yea, Father ; 3 for so it 
was well-pleasing in thy sight. 22 All things have been de 
livered unto me of my Father : and no one knoweth who the 
Son is, save the Father ; and who the Father is, save the 
Son, and he to whomsoever the Son willeth to reveal him. 
23 And turning to the disciples, he said privately, Blessed 
are the eyes which see the things that ye see : 24 for I say 

1 Or, by " Or, praise 3 Or, that 

152 ST LUKE [121-23 

unto you, that many prophets and kings desired to see the 
things which ye see, and saw them not ; and to hear the 
things which ye hear, and heard them not. 

21. rejoiced : a strong word exulted. On the Gospel of 
Joy see Introd., p. xxxix. 

in the Holy Spirit. This, the true reading, which has replaced 
the A.V. rejoiced in spirit, adds one more to the many Gospel 
references to the Holy Ghost in the writings of the chronicler of 
Pentecost. See note on i 35, and Introd., pp. xxxvii sqq. 

from the wise and understanding : represented by the worldly- 
minded Pharisee and Scribe, with their conceit of knowledge, and 
the wealthy and prosperous towns of Galilee mentioned above, 
vv. 13-15 (Whitham, The Gospel according to St. Luke, Rivingtons 
1919, ad loc.). 

babes. See the teaching of such passages as xviii 15-17 with its 
parallels, and Jn iii 3, 5. Sincere simplicity and teachableness are 
marked in that group of Saints of the Dawn to which St Luke 
introduces us in his first two chapters. Such can say with Simeon 
(ii 30), Mine eyes have seen thy salvation. The climax of the 
Messianic signs to be reported to the Baptist is that the poor have 
the gospel preached to them (vii 22 ; cf . iv 18). Cf . also 1 Cor i 21, 
perhaps a conscious reminiscence of this saying. 

22. All things have been delivered . . . Both Luke and Matthew 
(xi 27) record this utterance of Jesus, which is entirely in the spirit 
of the fourth Gospel. It must therefore (whether or not each 
derived it from Q) have been in a primitive source, a fact which 
gives strong support, of a general sort, to the faithfulness of 
the Johannine tradition of our Lord s manner of discourse. Cf. 
F. Palmer, in Amer. Journ. of Theol. xxiii 302 : That might have 
come not from the Synoptists but from the fourth Gospel, its tone 
is so like the profound underlying keynote of the Johannine writings. 
" I and my father are one ". Prof. Palmer goes on to quote from 
Prof. Ropes that in the Synoptic portrait a certain mystery is an 
integral and essential element, which cannot be separated out as 
having been added by a legendary accretion. 

In the first Gospel this verse is immediately followed (xi 28 sqq.) 
by the sublime invitation Come unto me . . . It is extraordinary, 
as Ramsay points out (Luke the Physician, p. 92), that Luke should 
have omitted this passage had it been in the common source. 
Very likely (see note on vv. 21-24 above) Luke s source was different 
from Matthew s. Still, it were precarious to lay too much stress on 
a single omission, where the work of selection must have been so 
complex (see p. 140). 

23-24 = Mat xiii 17, 16, and are probably both from Q. If we 
ask who has changed the order, the answer is, probably Matthew, 
for he very generally changes the order when using Mk i vi, while 
Luke in general maintains it (Streeter, Oxf. Stud., pp. 145, 146). 

x 23-25] ST LUKE 153 

23. turning to the disciples. The actual gesture is not mentioned 
elsewhere ; but repeatedly in this section our Lord is represented 
as turning from a discourse to the crowd and addressing the 
disciples as such (cf. xii 22, xvi 1, xvii 1). 

privately : vv. 21, 22 had been uttered before a large audience. 

Blessed are the eyes, <bc. Matthew puts this utterance much 
earlier between the Parable of the Sower and its interpretation. 
It is a saying which might well have been uttered in more than one 
connexion. But if both derived it from Q, St Matthew is the more 
likely to have misplaced it. 

24. many prophets and kings. Matthew, who (as has been 
observed) mentions kings much oftener than Luke does, has 
righteous men in the parallel passage. This is a small point, but 
may be considered evidence, of a kind, that these are two inde 
pendent sayings, and from different sources. The verb desired 
also is different in each case. The Prophets and Kings of the O.T. 
looked forward to a Christ they never saw in life. The Davidic 
kings were themselves imperfect Messiahs on the line of the true 
and perfect one. 

(e) 25-37 The Lawyer s Question ; The Good Samaritan 

This incident is often identified with that recorded in Mk xii 
28-32, and more fully in Mat xxii 35-40, as occurring later, in the 
Holy Week. In that case the question arises, which account is the 
more accurate (a) as to the occasion, and (6) as to the details ? 
(a) Occasion : it is quite in St Luke s manner (cf . the Miracle of the 
Four Thousand and the second Storm on the Lake) to omit a normal 
episode in the Marcan document if he is giving elsewhere an equiva 
lent. It is not usual with him to transfer such an episode without 
good reason. (6) As to detail : it will be noticed that here the 
question is different from that put in the other Synoptics not 
Which is the great Commandment ? but (as in another case, 
Lk xviii 18, where the commandments are again in point) What 
shall I do to inherit eternal life ? In both Lucan incidents our 
Lord makes the questioner summarize the commandments, while 
in Matthew and Mark the summary is His own. In Matthew and 
Mark the summary brings the episode to a close ; here, the final 
answer is given in the form of a Parable and the query that arises 
out of it (x 36). 

The problem lacks decisive evidence for its solution ; but is it 
not the more likely that the question of that great Commandment 
of the Law , which was every pious Jew s vade-mecum, should have 
arisen more than once, and have been handled differently on different 
occasions ? See next note, and cf . note on xi 2-4. 

25-29. THE LAWYER S QUESTION. This is one of the three 
passages (as distinct from isolated verses) which might lead to the 
supposition that Luke had used the Marcan document in the Great 
Interpolation : it is at first sight parallel to Mk xii 28-32 (Mat 

154 ST LUKE [X 25-27 

xxii 35-40). The other two are the Beelzebub passage (xi 15, 17-23 ; 
cf . Mk iii 22-27) and the Parable of the Mustard Seed (xiii 18, 19 ; 
cf. Mk iv 30 sqq.). These are all discussed by Sir J. Hawkins in 
Oxf. Stud., pp. 41-53. It is obvious that Luke cannot have had 
Mark as it stands before him : he could have had no sufficient reason 
for altering it so. He must therefore have been working upon a 
source (Q, according to Streeter, op. cit., pp. 176, 192) which placed 
this incident earlier. And further, it is quite possible that this 
source was relating a different, though similar, incident. It is by 
no means unlikely, says Hawkins (p. 44), that the Shema, which 
as an often-repeated formula " undoubtedly belongs to the time 
of Christ " (Schiirer, H.J.P. ii 2, p. 77 ; cf. p. 84), might more 
than once enter into His discussions with the Jewish 

25 And behold, a certain lawyer stood up and tempted 
him, saying, faster, what shall I do to inherit eternal life ? 
26 And he said unto him, What is written in the law ? how 
readest thou ? 27 And he answering said, Thou shalt love 
the Lord thy God 2 with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, 
and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind ; and thy 
neighbour as thyself. 28 And he said unto him, Thou hast 
answered right : this do, and thou shalt live. 29 But he, 
desiring to justify himself, said unto Jesus, And who is my 
neighbour ? 

1 Or, Teacher * Gr./rom. 

25. a certain lawyer, i. e. professional interpreter of the Mosaic 
Law. Except for Mat xxii 35 the word is confined to Luke. 

stood up. Apparently amid a seated throng. 

tempted him : rather tested Him. It is a testing of His know 
ledge and teaching power rather than a sinister attempt to entrap. 

to inherit eternal life. The same question is asked by a certain 
ruler in xviii 18 sqq. There Jesus puts to him the second table of 
the Commandments. Eternal in Luke (as mainly in John) is always 
used in a good sense xvi 9, xviii 18, 30 never of loss or doom. 

26. What is written in the law ? how readest thou ? A Rabbinical 
formula. Christ meets the man on his own ground. But here, as 
elsewhere (xviii 19, xx 3), He answers by putting another question. 
Each is to live up to the best light he has : the lawyer to keep the 
spirit of the Law. 

27. Thou shalt love, &c. The opening of the Shema, or Hear, 
O Israel (Deut vi 4-9, xi 13-21, Num xv 37-41), was written in 
the phylactery which, no doubt, the lawyer was wearing. Recent 
apocalyptic research has rendered it probable (see note in Oxf. Stud., 
p. 44) that the two injunctions to love the Lord and one s neighbour 
were familiarly conjoined in men s minds for a century before this ; 
so that there will be no striking originality in the lawyer s uniting 

x 27-33] ST LUKE 155 

Lev xix 18 with Deut vi 5. He was only following the devout 
mystics of Judaism in recognizing the supreme place of love. 
Cf. Pirke Aboih (Oesterley, Sayings, i 2, p. 2), where a saying is 
quoted of Simon the Just (the subject of the splendid panegyric 
in Ecclus 1) : On three things the world stands : on the Law, on 
the Temple service, and on acts of love. 

with all thy strength. This word icr^ ?, given here and in 
Mk xii 30, does not occur in the Septuagint of Deut ; but it is in the 
similar phraseology of the description of Josiah s character (2 Kgs 
xxiii 25) from which it may have come into common use (Oxf. Stud., 
p. 43). 

28. this do, and thou shall live. The Lawyer has a plain answer 
to his question (perhaps he would have preferred something more 
romantic and less commonplace !). But one loophole remains 
one point to be defined. 

29. who is my neighbour ? Our Lord s answer gives no loop 
hole for casuistry, but the very widest interpretation. Any one to 
whom you can show mercy is your neighbour. 

Parables, pp. 311-329, is particularly helpful here). This Parable is 
not only peculiar to St Luke, but exceptionally marked by Lucan 
style and vocabulary. Dr V. H. Stanton (Gosp. as Hist. Doc. ii 229) 
points to it, with three other passages (vii 36-50, viii 1-3, and 
xvii 11-19) as clearly told in the Evangelist s own words, and not 
derived from a written source. If we do not identify vv. 25 sqq. with 
the supposed parallels in Matthew and Mark (see two first notes on 
w. 25-37), we may probably attribute them to the same oral source 
as the Parable conjecturally St Philip, the evangelist of Samaria (see 
note on x 1 and references there). It adds some point to the Parable 
if we conceive it to have been uttered in the neighbourhood, on our 
Lord s journey up from Jericho to visit Mary and Martha at Bethany 
(x 38 sqq.) for the Feast of Tabernacles. 

Among the Lucan features of this passage Hobart (M.L., p. 27) 
enumerates at least ten medical words and phrases all peculiar to 
him in the N.T. Among these are half-dead, bound up, wounds, the 
use of oil and wine (see note on v. 34), and took care of him. 

30 Jesus made answer and said, A certain man was going 
down from Jerusalem to Jericho ; and he fell among robbers, 
which both stripped him and beat him, and departed, leaving 
him half dead. 31 And by chance a certain priest was going 
down that way : and when he saw him, he passed by on the 
other side. 32 And in like manner a Levite also, when he 
came to the place, and saw him, passed by on the other side. 
33 But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he 
was : and when he saw him, he was moved with compassion, 

156 ST LUKE [X 30-32 

34 and came to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring on 
them oil and wine ; and he set him on his own beast, and 
brought him to an inn, and took care of him. 35 And on the 
morrow he took out two ^ence, and gave them to the host, 
and said, Take care of him ; and whatsoever thou spendest 
more, I, when I come back again, will repay thee. 36 Which of 
these three, thinkest thou, proved neighbour unto him that fell 
among the robbers ? 37 And he said, He that shewed mercy 
on him. And Jesus said unto him, Go, and do thou likewise. 

1 See marginal note on Mat xviii 28. 

30. A certain man. Our Lord, as reported by St Luke (e. g. 
xii 16, xiv 16, xv 11, xvi 1, 19, xviii 2, 10), not seldom intro 
duces a parable in this way. (The other Gospels have not this 
formula ; cf. Dr Bartlet, Oxf. Stud., p. 348.) The story is true as 
exhibiting a truth of human nature, or of Divine government but 
not necessarily fact. It is impossible to be certain whether here 
(as, e. g., in xiii 4) Christ is relating something which had actually 

The vivid story corresponds admirably with topographical con 
ditions. The road, wild and solitary, descends some 3,000 feet 
towards the plain of Jordan, flanked by caves and cliffs which, even 
in modern times, are haunts of robbers, and possesses but one inn 
on its whole 20 miles of length. It was in ancient times a by- word 
for highway robbery and murder. See references in Trench, op. cit., 
p. 315, and in Plummer, ad loc. 

from Jerusalem to Jericho. This stamps him as a Jew, and makes 
the compassionate action of the Samaritan (v. 33) more pointed. 

fell among robbers. Deissmann (New Light, p. 130) adduces an 
picturesque parallel to this highway robbery, alike in tone and in 
expression, in the complaint of some pig- merchants in the Fayyoum 
A. D. 171 that they were set upon, bound, beaten, stripped and 

31. a certain priest. Plummer points out that nowhere else 
does our Lord speak in derogation of Priests or Levites, and regards 
this as a token that the narrative is not fiction but history. As 
the lawyer was probably a Pharisee and the leading priests were 
Sadducees, the choice was hardly a direct blow at him. 

passed by. Humanly speaking there was much to explain (if not 
to excuse) this. Apart from the risk of a return of the bandits, if 
he had inadvertently touched a dead man it would have involved 
all the annoyance and delay of a ceremonial defilement. 

32. a Levite also : who perhaps excused himself by the example 
of the priest (Trench, op. cit., p. 327). There is a climactic series: 
one passes on the other side of the road ; the next stops and looks 
and then goes on ; the third approaches and brings succour. 

X 33-37] ST LUKE 157 

33. a certain Samaritan. Here, at any rate, the lawyer would 
have shuddered at the idea of a Samaritan being held up as an 
example to a Jew ! 

34. was moved with compassion. This was the best thing he 
had to give something of himself (Gregory the Great, ap. Trench, 
loc. cit., p. 327) : the external aid inevitably followed. The Samari 
tan churlishness recorded in ix 52, if it occurred shortly before, may 
have led our Lord to select this story and so speak a good word for 
those who had despitefully used Him (cf. vi 28). The kindness 
of the people of Sychar (Jn iv) and the signal gratitude of the 
Samaritan leper (xvii 16) justify His kindly estimate of these people 
and suggest that the incident of ix 52 does not give a complete or 
fair picture of their attitude towards Him. Possibly He has here 
a special lesson for the Sons of Thunder. 

This Parable has made the name Samaritan as honourable in 
Christian ears as it was despicable in those of the contemporary Jews. 

pouring on them oil and wine. Wine and oil were usual remedies 
for sores, wounds, &c., and also used as internal medicine, says 
Hobart (M.L., p. 28). He cites all four writers Hippocrates, 
Aretaeus, Dioscorides, and Galen for their medical use. 

brought him to an inn. The ruins of the solitary inn upon the 
20 miles of road were identified by Canon Tristram (Eastern Customs, 
p. 220, ap. Plummer). There is an inn, humble and rough, now much 
used by travellers, and called the Inn of the Good Samaritan (see, 
e. g., R. Hichens, The Holy Land, Hodder & Stoughton 1910, p. 173). 

St Luke himself may have professionally attended similar cases, 
as Hobart points out (loc. cit.). For we have it on record in Galen s 
writings (what was antecedently probable) that sick travellers used 
to take refuge in inns. 

35. two pence. 2 denarii would be in nominal value about 
2 francs (Is. 8d.) ; in purchasing power much more. 

Take care of him. He is asking a favour of mine host , for in 
the Eastern inn more or less as in the resting-places on Indian 
roads the traveller receives shelter, but is expected to find his 
own board and attendance. 

36. Which of these three . . . ? You enquire, " Who is my neigh 
bour ? " Behold a man who asked quite another question, " To 
whom can I be a neighbour ? " And then be yourself the judge, 
whether you or he have most of the mind of God . . . ? (Trench, 
p. 328). 

37. He that shewed mercy on him. The lawyer s lips cannot 
frame the word Samaritan in this connexion. But his answer is 
the better, because it enunciates the principle. 

This Parable lends itself more justifiably than most to a mysti 
cal interpretation, in which He that shewed mercy is Christ 
Himself : for His work of redemption is supreme among acts of 
mercy. Trench s summary of patristic and other interpretations 
(pp. 321 sqq.) is of particular value in this case. 

158 ST LUKE [X 37-42 

The Parable of the Good Samaritan, rich in materials for artistic 
treatment, appeals more, in its picturesqueness, to the modern 
than it appealed to the mediaeval mind. There is a sixteenth- 
century representation in the National Gallery by Bassano (No. 277), 
typically Venetian, and another by the same hand at Vienna ; and 
Rembrandt has a famous picture in the Louvre, and Paolo Veronese 
at Dresden. Cf. Jameson, Hist, of 0. L., vol. i, p. 388. A modern 
artist, with splendid grasp of reality, has translated it into terms of 
the Great War. The desolation of the road is that of a shell-blasted 
area, and a man in khaki uniform is patiently rendering first aid 
to another at the risk of his own life. The only change needed to 
make it a perfect illustration of our Lord s teaching is that one of 
the uniforms should be the grey of the enemy. 

(f ) 38-42 Mary and Martha (cf . Jn xi and xii 1-8) 
This incident supplies an undesigned coincidence illustrative 
of the accuracy of the two Evangelists who alone mention the 
sisters. St John s narrative shows them at Bethany, already very 
intimate with our Lord, and implies previous visits. St Luke 
supplies us with an account of one such visit, and though he 
(possibly) does not even know the name of their native village, 
he draws their portraits so vividly and truly that we can at once 
recognize the figures drawn by St John. 

Further, our Lord s proximity to Jerusalem (implied, if Bethany 
is the place) at this time fits in with the record in the fourth Gospel 
(Jn vii ix) of a visit to the Feast of Tabernacles (Sept. A. D. 28). 
Jesus went up late to that Feast (Jn vii 10), and on arriving at 
Bethany would find the brother Lazarus already gone to Jerusalem 
(women did not necessarily go), and this would account for St Luke 
not mentioning him. See Edersh., L. and T. ii 145-147. 

38 Now as they went on their way, he entered into a cer 
tain village : and a certain woman named Martha received 
him into her house. 39 And she had a sister called Mary, 
which also sat at the Lord s feet, and heard his word. 40 But 
Martha was Numbered about much serving ; and she came 
up to him, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister 
did leave me to serve alone ? bid her therefore that she help 
me. 41 But the Lord answered and said unto her, 2 Martha, 
Martha, thou art anxious and troubled about many things : 
42 3 but one thing is needful : for Mary hath chosen the good 
part, which shall not be taken away from her. 

1 Gr. distracted. 

2 A few ancient authorities read Martha, Martha, thou art troubled : Mary hath 
chosen, <fcc. 

3 Many ancient authorities read but Jew things arc needful, or one. 

X 38-42] ST LUKE 159 

38. received him : as, later, did Zacchaeus (xix 6) and as Jason, 
at Thessalonica, was reported to have received St Paul and his 
companions (Ac xvii 7). The verb which is practically peculiar 
to St Luke in the N.T. (elsewhere only Jas ii 25) is noted by Hobart 
(M.L., p. 156) as a favourite in medical writings. 

into her house. In Bethany, a village pleasantly situated near 
the south-east base of the Mount of Olives, and now known as El 
Azariyeh recording the name of Lazarus. Cf . Thomson, The Land 
and the Book, p. 697. 

St John records that Mary, shortly before the Passion, anointed 
the Lord s feet with precious ointment and wiped them with her 
hair (Jn xii 1-3) : this anointing is not to be identified with that of 
the Sinful Woman narrated by St Luke in vii 37 sqq. (which 
accounts for his not mentioning the later episode). But the incident 
is evidently the same as that given in Mat xxvi 6 and Mk xiv 3 as 
occurring in the house of Simon the Leper. We may presume, 
therefore, that Martha is the wife, widow, or elder daughter of 
Simon who, as a leper, could not, by Jewish law, live at home. 

39. at the Lord s feet : as disciple and listener even as St Paul 
had sat (Ac xxii 3) at the feet of Gamaliel. On the Lord, see 
note on vii 13. The Apostle perhaps has this incident in his mind 
when describing the difference between the married and the un 
married woman in 1 Cor vii 34. 

40. help me. The word which means to share another s interest 
in a matter is rare in N.T., elsewhere only Rom viii 36 ; but Deiss- 
mann shows that it was quite common in the Mediterranean world, 
beginning from an inscription at Delphi of 270 B. c. 

41. Martha, Martha . . . Doubtless a kindly chiding, uttered 
with a smile. Syr-Sin, text omits the chiding altogether, reading : 
Martha, Martha, Mary has chosen for herself the good part which 
shall not be taken away from her (P. L.). 

42. one thing is needful : considerable MS authority goes with 
the reading of R.V. marg. but few things are needful, or one. But 
it may be connate of two readings few and one . A single dish 
would suffice. True hospitality cannot be measured by the elabo 
rateness of the menu. Mary has given the hospitality of the open 
heart and the attentive ear. 

Incidentally it is a preaching of the Simple Life : directly, it 
emphasizes the vast superiority of the spiritual over the material. 

Dante, to whom (as to so many before and since) Martha and 
Mary typify the active and the contemplative life, comes 
strangely near the modern interpretation when he paraphrases 
(Conv. iv 17), Assuredly only one thing is necessary namely, 
that which thou art doing : doe quello che fai. Do as you are 
doing, but do not fret about it : Mary also is doing the right thing. 

The sisters of Bethany are very scantily represented in Art 
(Mrs Jameson, Sacred and Legendary Art, pp. 386, 387 ; see also 
Hist, of 0. L., vol. i, pp. 325-328). Martha is usually represented as 

160 ST LUKE [XI i 

the Patroness of female discretion and good housekeeping, while 
Mary is too often identified with Mary Magdalene and the Sinner 
of chapter vii. 

(2) XI 1 XIII 35 Second Period of the Journeyings : 
from the Visit to Bethany to the Lament over Jerusalem 

If, with Edersheim (L. & T. ii 145-147), we connect the visit to 
Bethany with the Feast of Tabernacles A. D. 28, and the indications 
of xiii 31-35 with the Feast of Dedication in that year, the events 
of this section will occupy about 3 months, from about Sept. 23 to 
about Dec. 23, and will involve Journeyings presumably in the 
neighbourhood of Jerusalem. That neighbourhood might well be 
the scene of the Lord s Prayer (see note on xi 1 ), of the Denunciation 
of Pharisees (xi 37-54), of the Lesson of Calamities, and the Parable 
of the Barren Fig-tree (xiii 1-9), as well as of the Warning against 
Herod (xiii 31-35). On the other hand a prolonged stay in Jerusalem 
itself would (as Godet points out vol. ii, p. 6) be inconsistent with 
the atmosphere of Jn vii. Also the editorial clause xiii 22 seems 
to suggest a wider field, and a steady movement from the north 
towards the Holy City. 

(a) XI 1-13 Instruction on Prayer 

Prayer (i 10, ii 37, iii 21, vi 12, ix 18, ix 29, xxii 32, xxiii 34) is 
one of the prominent themes in St Luke, and it is characteristic of 
him to note that it was the example of the Master at prayer that 
led the Disciples to ask for instruction on the subject. Neither the 
occasion nor the question is recorded by St Matthew in connexion 
with the enunciation of the Pattern Prayer Our Father (Mat vi 
9-13). There a type is given after this manner pray ye ; here 
a definite, but shorter, form of words When ye pray, say . . . 
The two prayers may be quite independent of one another (see note 
on vv. 2-4) ; if not, we should expect St Luke s to be the more 
original. The Parable which follows (vv. 5-8) and the subsequent 
Discourse (vv. 9-13) give encouragement to prayer by an a fortiori 

XI And it came to pass, as he was praying in a certain 
place, that when he ceased, one of his disciples said unto him, 
Lord, teach us to pray, even as John also taught his disciples. 

1. as he was praying in a certain place. The phrase, indefinite 
as it is, recalls x 38, He entered into a certain village. Dr Armi- 
tage Robinson (Texts & Studies, vol. i, pp. 123-125) in an interesting 
note attached to Dr Chase s Monograph (see below) argues that from 
the proximity of these two passages a reasonable conjecture can be 
made as to the locality in which the Lord s Prayer was given. The 

xi i - 4 ] ST LUKE 161 

certain village we know from Jn xi 1 to have been Bethany ; 
may not the certain place have been Gethsemane, on the Bethany 
side of Jerusalem, on the Mount of Olives ? It is Gethsemane which, 
with parallel indefiniteness, St Luke introduces by the words (xxii 40) 
when he was at the place (though defined to some extent in 
v. 39) ; while St John (xviii 2) expressly asserts that our Lord 
oft-times resorted thither with his disciples. If this be so, we 
have another point of contact with the fourth Gospel. 

even as John. This falls in with the implication of v 33, where 
our Lord s critics aver that it is distinctive of the Baptist s disciples 
that they fast often, and make supplications. The Rabbis were 
very sparing in drawing up forms of prayer for their disciples, who 
mainly rested on traditional forms. St John seems to have inno 
vated on this point. No form of prayer attributed to him is extant. 
It must surely have included an equivalent to Thy kingdom come. 

2-4. THE LORD S PRAYER. Have we, or have we not, here, an 
imperfect parallel to the familiar Lord s Prayer in St Matthew 
(vi 9-13) ? The question arises in a number of cases, as, e. g., in the 
Beatitudes (vi 20-23 ; Mat v 3 sqq.) and many of the supposed 
parallels in the Sermon on the Mount, and the Lawyer s Question 
(x 25 sqq. ; Mat xxii 35^10). The answer may vary in different 
cases ; but we remind ourselves that it is almost inconceivable that 
in the course of His Ministry the Lord should not have enunciated 
the same principles again and again in different contexts and in 
slightly varying phraseology. Dr E. F. Morrison (pp. 141 sqq., see 
below) argues that the longer form in Matthew may be original, 
and Luke may have shortened the Prayer in adapting it to Gentile 
readers. Whatever be the significance of the fact, it is worth while 
remarking that the phrases peculiar to Matthew are largely found 
in the Talmud. 

In A.V. the Lucan record of the Prayer, as given by the best 
MSS, was assimilated to the larger Matthaean form. Blass (Philol. 
Gosp., pp. 177 sqq.) argues that the R.V. text (and the mass of MS 
evidence behind it) still preserves an assimilation in a less degree ; 
and that the reading of D, IXOerw e< ^/xas Thy kingdom come 
upon us, points to an original Lucan text preserved by the minuscule 
700 and attested by Gregory of Nyssa and Maximus Confessor, 
Thy Holy Spirit come upon us. The Prayer in St Luke would 
then be still more independent, and run thus : 

Thy Holy Ghost come upon us and make us clean, 
Give us day by day our daily bread, &c., &c., 
where, for the Holy Ghost, cf. below, xi 13. 

For practical interpretation of the Lord s Prayer in its fuller 
form, see the companion volume on St Matthew in this series, 
pp. 55-59 ; and 

Dr E. F. Morrison, The L. P. and the Prayers of Our Lord. S.P.C.K., 

L. 11 

162 ST LUKE [XI 5-8 

Dr J. W. Thirtle, The L. P., an Interpretation Critical and Exposi 
tory. Morgan & Scott, 1915. 

Dr R. L. Ottley, The Rule of Work and Worship, an Exposition of 
the L. P. Robt. Scott, 1915. 

Dr Chase, The L. P. in the Early Church (Texts & Studies, vol. i, 
No. 3). Cambridge. 

Dr C. Gore, Prayer and the L. P. Wells, Gardner, Darton & Co., 1898. 

F. A. Malleson, The L. P. and the Church : Letters to the Clergy by 
John Euskin. Strahan, N. D. 

2 And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, father, 
Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. 2 3 Give us day 
by day 3 our daily bread. 4 And forgive us our sins ; for we 
ourselves also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And 
bring us not into temptation. 4 

1 Many ancient authorities read Our Father, which art in heaven. See Mat vi 9. 

2 Many ancient authorities add Thy will be done, as in heaven, so on earth. See 
Mat vi 10. 3 Gr. our bread for the coming day. 

1 Many ancient authorities add but deliver us from the evil one (or, from evil). 
See Mat vi 13. 

IMPORTUNATE FRIEND (Trench, Parables, pp. 330-336). Canon 
Streeter (Oxf. Stud., p. 192) thinks that this and the Unjust Steward 
may have been in Q, but omitted by Matthew because liable to 
misinterpretation. To these Sir John Hawkins (ib., p. 134) would 
add the Importunate Widow ( Unjust Judge ), which is, in any 
case, a companion Parable. 

Homely and even humorous in its suggestions, this peculiarly 
Lucan Parable is typical of Luke the Humorist, as Mr H. McLachlan 
(St Luke, the Man and his Work, 1920) dares to style our Evangelist. 
He instances this Parable and that of the Unwilling Guests 
(xiv 15-24) in the Gospel, and in the Acts the accounts of the Riot 
at Ephesus, and of St Paul s Speech at Athens as conspicuous 
examples of St Luke s gift of humour (op. cit., p. 148). The humour, 
of course, goes back to the Originator of the Parables ; but the other 
Evangelists have not succeeded in conveying this trait as St Luke 
has. Cf . for irony, xiii 32, xiv 12, xiv 15. 

5 And he said unto them, Which of you shall have a friend, 
and shall go unto him at midnight, and say to him, Friend, 
lend me three loaves ; 6 for a friend of mine is come to me 
from a journey, and I have nothing to set before him ; 7 and 
he from within shall answer and say, Trouble me not : the 
door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed ; 
I cannot rise and give thee ? 81 say unto you, Though he 

XI 5-i3] ST LUKE 163 

will not rise and give him, because he is his friend, yet because 
of his importunity he will arise and give him x as many as he 

1 Or, whatsoever things 

5. Which of you shall have a friend. This beginning, TI? e v^wv, 
is common in St Luke (xii 25, xiv 28, xv 4, xvii 2) like A certain 
man (see note on x 30). Matthew has it only once, in vi 27. The 
argument, like that of the Parable of the Importunate Widow 
(xviii 1-8), is a strong a fortiori argument. If a reluctant man will 
rise and give to importunity, what cannot faithful perseverance win 
from a gracious God ? It is in the atmosphere of friendship that 
prayer lives. Here a friend pleads to a friend for a friend. Of. 
Andrew Murray, With Christ in the School of Prayer. 

7. Trouble me not, &c. The whole sleeping family must be 
roused if not awakened already by the insistent knocking ! The 
most inconvenient time is chosen to enforce the argument. Luke 
does not, like Lucian, hold up to ridicule the idea of a Divine 
attention to the numberless and conflicting requests rising up from 

God has no inconvenient times ; but His gracious response is 
conditioned by our earnestness. Trench aptly quotes (p. 331) from 
Dante s Paradiso, xx 94 sqq. Where human love and hope are 
said to conquer the Divine Will 

Not in such sort 

As man prevails o er man ; but conquers it 
Because tis willing to be conquered, still, 
Tho conquer d, by its mercy conquering. 

Non a guisa che 1 uomo all uom sovranza, 
Ma vince lei, perche vuol esser vinta, 
E, vinta, vince con sua beninanza. 

my children are with me in bed. It has been suggested that Jesus 
gives here a reminiscence of crowded cottage-life at Nazareth. The 
Leaven and the Lost Coin may also be reminiscences of His 
boyhood. Cf. T. R. Glover, The Jesus of History, pp. 27 sqq. 

8. importunity : lit. shamelessness. 

9 And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you ; 
seek, and ye shall find ; knock, and it shall be opened unto 
you. 10 For every one that asketh receiveth ; and he that 
seeketh findeth ; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened. 
11 And of which of you that is a father shall his son ask 
*a loaf, and he give him a stone ? or a fish, and he for a fish 
give him a serpent ? 12 Or if he shall ask an egg, will he give 
him a scorpion ? 13 If ye then, being evil, know how to 

1 Some ancient authorities omit a loaf, and he give him a stone ? or. 


164 ST LUKE [XI 13, 14 

give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall 
your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask 

9. And I say unto you. Both pronouns are more emphatic than 
in the similar phrase, v. 8. 

9-13. Ask, and it shall be given you, &c. This passage is found 
also in Mat vii 7-11, but with two important variations : (a) Luke 
adds the figure of the scorpion (cf. the conjunction of serpents 
and scorpions in x 19), and (b) where Matthew has simply good 
things Luke has the Holy Spirit characteristic of the Chronicler 
of Pentecost. 

These verses are the Magna Charta of Prayer. They not only 
state explicitly that earnest and persevering prayer shall win its 
blessing, but also imply that for the winning of the best gifts such 
prayer is a necessary condition. In the light of experience we might 
carry interpretation a step farther, and assert that when with 
real devotion and earnestness, but without knowledge, men pray 
for what would injure them God gives a blessing in answer. When 
they ask for a stone, a serpent, a scorpion, He gives instead the loaf, 
the fish, the egg. 

13. being evil. inrapxovTss, stronger than the OVTCS of Mat 
vii 11, being radically evil. 

the Holy Spirit. Luke, the Historian of the Holy Ghost (cf. 
Introd., p. xxxviii), thus interprets, we may believe, and rightly 
interprets, the good things which he and Matthew found in the 
source Q. This is the greatest gift of all, and the one of which we 
may be quite sure that the Father always desires that we should 
have it. 

(b) 14-26 Exorcism of a Dumb Devil, and Teaching thereon 

Parts of this section occur in Mk iii, and almost the whole of it, 
though with additions and puzzling changes of order, in Mat 
xii 22 sqq. Luke does not seem to have drawn from Mark here, but 
(like Matthew) from Q. Matthew, following Mark (though not 
exactly), places it much earlier, before the incident of The Lord s 
Brethren. In Mark the teaching has no connexion with the context, 
and in Matthew, though it is connected, as here, with the exorcism, it 
is characteristically brought into a collection of anti-Pharisaic sayings. 
We may believe that Luke is more likely to be right in placing it 
where he does. (Cf. Sir John Hawkins s note, Oxf. Stud., p. 45 ; 
Canon Streeter, ib., pp. 146 and 170 sqq. he thinks that Mark 
represents a mutilated excerpt from Q and N. P. Williams, ib., 
p. 413.) 

14 And he was casting out a 1 devil which was dumb. 

1 Gr. demon. 

XI i 4 , is] ST LUKE 165 

And it came to pass, when the 1 devil was gone out, the dumb 
man spake ; and the multitudes marvelled. 15 But some of 
them said, 2 By Beelzebub the prince of the Mevils casteth he 
out 3 devils. 16 And others, tempting him, sought of him 
a sign from heaven. 17 But he, knowing their thoughts, said 
unto them, Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to 
desolation ; 4 and a house divided against a house falleth. 
18 And if Satan also is divided against himself, how shall his 
kingdom stand ? because ye say that I cast out 3 devils 2 by 
Beelzebub. 19 And if I 2 by Beelzebub cast out 3 devils, by 
whom do your sons cast them out ? therefore shall they be 
your judges. 20 But if I by the finger of God cast out 3 devils, 
then is the kingdom of God come upon you. 21 When the 
strong man fully armed guardeth his own court, his goods are 
in peace : 22 but when a stronger than he shall come upon 
him, and overcome him, he taketh from him his whole armour 
wherein he trusted, and divideth his spoils. 23 He that is not 
with me is against me ; and he that gathereth not with me 
scattereth. 24 The unclean spirit when 5 he is gone out of the 
man, passeth through waterless places, seeking rest ; and 
finding none, 5 he saith, I will turn back unto my house whence 
I came out. 25 And when 5 he is come, 5 he findeth it swept 
and garnished. 26 Then goeth 5 he, and taketh to him seven 
other spirits more evil than 6 himself ; and they enter in and 
dwell there : and the last state of that man becometh worse 
than the first. 

1 Gr. demon. 2 Or, In s Gr. demons. 

4 Or, andhoitsefalkth upon house. 5 Or, it Or, itself 

14. the multitudes marvelled. Cf . note on v 26. Matthew also 
notes their amazement, and adds that they asked Is this the 
son of David ? (cf. note on xviii 39). 

15. some of them. Matthew (who groups this with anti-Pharisaic 
matter) says Pharisees. As Mark says still more definitely, scribes 
which came from Jerusalem (iii 22), we may safely define further 
the vague reference in the text, and may perhaps see in it an indica 
tion of proximity to the city (see preliminary note on xi 1 xiii 35). 

By Beelzebub (properly Beelzebul, as MSS) the prince of the 
devils : lit. in B., i. e. in the power of B., as one who is possessed 
by B. If the word means lord of dung i. e. of abominations 
= false gods the prince of the devils is a fair translation : if it 

166 ST LUKE [XI 15-21 

means lord of the mansion it leads up to the figure of the strong 
man and his palace (w. 21 sqq.). See further, Edersheim, L. & T. 

In connexion with the Feast of Tabernacles (see note on x 38-42) 
St John records a saying of the Jews (Jn viii 48), Thou art a 
Samaritan, and hast a devil. St Mark closely associates this incident 
with the anxiety of His relatives : He is beside himself (Mk iii 21). 

16. tempting him. This incident recalls the Temptation in the 
Wilderness. The accusation of v. 15, if true, would have meant a 
yielding to the second Temptation (iv 7) ; the enticement of this 
verse, if followed, to the third (iv 9 sqq.). 

a sign from heaven. Matthew (xii 38 sqq.) makes the Pharisees 
formally demand such a sign, and places the demand just before 
the discourse on the Seven Devils. Did the name Beelzebul 
connected as it is with the story of Elijah s calling down fire (2 Kgs 
i 2 sqq.) itself suggest the demand for a similar sign (cf . 
Plummer, ad loc.) ? If so, we may note that this is precisely the 
type of sign which Christ had rejected in answer to James and John 
(ix 54). 

17. knowing their thoughts. Cf . v 22 and note there. 

18. if Satan (identified with B.) also is divided . . . An appeal 
to common sense. Could Satan be assumed to act for his open 
and obvious self-destruction ? The powers of evil are still too strong 
to make it even plausible ? Incidentally a great principle is enun 
ciated Union is strength. 

19. your sons. A reference, apparently, to genuine exorcisms ; 
but cf . the incident of the Sons of Sceva, Ac xix 13 sqq. 

20. by the finger of God. Deissmann (op. cit., p. 309) adduces an 
ancient binding charm from an ostrakon with the words I adjure 
thee by the finger of God. The Hebraistic tone of the expression 
(cf. Exod viii 19) is in line with the indications of Luke s special 
source (cf. notes on ix 51, 53). If, however, it stood thus in Q, 
Matthew, who reads by the spirit of God, must have interpreted 
it here because of its obscurity (cf. Hawkins, Oxf. Stud., p. 49) as 
Luke interpreted the good things of v. 13 because of the indefinite- 

then is the kingdom of God come upon you. It is not civil war within 
the Satanic realm that works these cures : the evil kingdom is too 
strong. But a stronger has appeared (v. 22) to assail it from without, 
and these are the evidences of His prowess. It is remarkable that 
Matthew has here kingdom of God instead of his usual kingdom 
of heaven. One might argue that it is he, and not Luke, that has 
modified the original phrase throughout ; but kept it here for the 
parallel Spirit of God . . . kingdom of God. 

For this idea of a present kingdom (exhibited side by side with 
that of one to come ), cf. vii 28, xvi 16, xvii 20, and the Parables 
of Mustard Seed and Leaven (xiii 18-21). 

21, 22. THE STRONG AND THE STRONGER. Good is stronger than 

XI 21-26] ST LUKE 167 

evil, Christ stronger than Satan, and the kingdom of God in Christ 
than the kingdom of Satan. 

21. guardeth his own court. Cf. note on v. 15. 

22. his whole armour : lit. panoply, with which, in Eph vi 11 
is contrasted the panoply of God, in a passage which describes the 
same battle carried on by Christ s followers. Satan s armour is 
there alluded to (vi 16) in the fiery darts. Here it is rather pictured 
as consisting of the hosts of demons at work in the world. 

divideth his spoils. Cf . Isa liii 12, He shall divide the spoil 
with the strong ; where, however, the LXX version is different. Is 
it the forces and material at his disposal, or the souls that he has 
led captive ? Perhaps we should not attempt to interpret this 
clause too minutely, but regard it as giving a touch of completeness 
to the picture of a victory. Cf . Col ii 15, where Christ is described 
as triumphing openly over the powers of evil by His cross. Cf . 
also Eph iv 8. 

23. He that is not with me. In the war just described the two 
sides are clearly defined (as against the blurred conception of 
Christ s accusers) and there is no neutrality. It is, in a way, a com 
plementary truth to that uttered in ix 50. 

gathereth . . . scattereth. Godet carries on the battle-metaphor 
Jesus is rallying troops for a fresh attack. 

24-26. THE SEVEN EVIL SPIRITS. A Parable emphasizing the 
teaching of v. 23 the impossibility of neutrality in the Spiritual 
Combat. As the Great War showed us, neutral territory is always 
at the mercy of a sufficiently unscrupulous foe and who more 
unscrupulous than the Prince of Darkness ? The soul emptied of 
evil and not filled with good has no power to resist the turning tide 
of evil, which will come back with increased force (Adeney). 

24. through waterless places. This Parable gives us not so much 
the true Natural History of demons as a picture of what was 
generally conceived as natural among our Lord s audience. 

It was into the wilderness that the Scape-goat was sent for 
the demon Azazel (Lev xvi 10). So in Rev xviii 2 desolated and 
ruined Babylon is described as a habitation of demons. 

seeking rest : in some human soul. 

unto my house. It is still his, because unoccupied by Good. The 
soul is vacant, swept and garnished for any chance occupier. 
The only sure defence is to fill it with whatsoever things are true, 
honourable, just, pure, lovely, &c. (Phil iv 8). Whether inten 
tionally or not, this Parable suggests the contrast between Christ s 
exorcisms and those of the Jews : the latter, a mere expulsion at 
best ; the former, a conquering and binding of the usurping occupant 
(cf. viii 31-33) and a filling of the soul with good (viii 38, 39). 

26. seven other spirits. It is possible that He is here describing 
in contemporary phraseology the story of Mary Magdalene (viii 2) 
before she felt His healing power. 

168 ST LUKE [XI 27-29 

(c) 27, 28. TRUE BLESSEDNESS. Peculiar to the Gospel of 
Womanhood. Matthew and Mark place here the summary from 
his Mother and Brethren recorded earlier by Luke (viii 19-21). 
Canon Streeter (Oxf. Stud., p. 192) holds that this incident was in Q 
as used by Matthew, but that he omits it because he has already 
(xii 47-50) adopted a story from Mark with exactly the same 

27 And it came to pass, as he said these things, a certain 
woman out of the multitude lifted up her voice, and said unto 
him, Blessed is the womb that bare thee, and the breasts 
which thou didst suck. 28 But he said, Yea rather, blessed 
are they that hear the word of God, and keep it. 

27. as he said these things. This is one of the seven notes of 
time which St Luke has inserted into the Great Interpolation. 
The others are at xi 37 and 53, xii 1 and 13, xiii 1 and 31. Stanton 
(Oosp. as Hist. Doc. ii 227 sqq.) remarks that these notes, vague as 
they are, are meant to be taken seriously and not as mere conjec 
tures. For he observes that where Luke parallels Mark, or intro 
duces fresh matter into the Marcan narrative, he is careful not to 
add notes of temporal connexion (cf . Mk ii 1 = Lk v 17, Mk iii 1 
= Lk vi 6, Mk iii 13 = Lk vi 12). 

Blessed is the womb. A characteristic Jewish utterance. So in 
Pirke Aboth a famous Rabbi said of one of his five disciples, 
Blessed is she who bore him ! (Oesterley, Sayings, 10, p. 22). 

Yea rather. Clearly our Lord is not disparaging His Mother, 
but incidentally proclaiming the secret of her true blessedness. By 
hearing the word of God and keeping it (i 38) she had opened the 
door to man s salvation. 

(d) 29-36 The Demand for a Sign 

SYMBOLISM or THE LAMP. There were apparently incidents of this 
kind both in Mark and in Q. Matthew gives this more or less as 
Luke hi its original Q context. He also takes it from Mk viii 11, 12, 
and repeats in Mat xvi 1-4. The request may indeed have been 
repeated more than once, but Luke loses nothing of importance 
by his avoidance of a doublet. 

29 And when the multitudes were gathering together unto 
him, he began to say, This generation is an evil generation : 
it seeketh after a sign ; and there shall no sign be given to it 
but the sign of Jonah. 30 For even as Jonah became a sign 
unto the Ninevites, so shall also the Son of man be to this 

XI 29-32] ST LUKE 169 

29. the multitudes were gathering. St Luke has frequent notices 
of this kind iv 42, v 1, vi 17, &c. 

seeketh after a sign. This refers us back to the tempting of 
v. 16. It was characteristic of the unbelieving Jews both during 
and after our Lord s earthly ministry, this craving for a dramatic 
display of power. That is what gave substance to the third of our 
Lord s typical Temptations (iv 9 sqq.) ; Jews ask for signs is still 
St Paul s experience in the middle of his missionary career (1 Cor 

There is a saying recorded of St Hugh of Lincoln when some 
offered to bring him evidence of a miracle of the Blessed Sacrament 
Let them keep to themselves the tokens of their unbelief ! 

30. even as Jonah became a sign unto the Ninevites. This, and not 
the episode of the sea monster, is, according to our Gospel, the 
sign of Jonah. It was the mission of Jonah and his preaching 
that converted the Ninevites, and the mission and word of the 
Greater than Jonah that should have converted this generation 
(v. 32). 

In Mat xii 40 the sign of Jonah is interpreted differently, and 
made to refer to his swallowing and expulsion by the sea monster, 
as paralleled by the death and resurrection of our Lord. There are 
difficulties about that interpretation (see Micklem, St Matthew, 
ad loc.), though its interest is enhanced by the modern conception 
that the miracle of Jonah is really a parable of Israel s captivity 
and resurrection to new life. But St Luke s meaning is more 
probably the original (unless they represent two different sayings) 
and St Matthew s a very early gloss added perhaps by the Evan 
gelist himself. 

31. THE QUEEN OF THE SOUTH (1 Kgs x 1-13). Cf. note on 
iv 1-13. 

31 The queen of the south shall rise up in the judgement 
with the men of this generation, and shall condemn them : 
for she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of 
Solomon ; and behold, x a greater than Solomon is here. 
32 The men of Nineveh shall stand up in the judgement with 
this generation, and shall condemn it : for they repented at 
the preaching of Jonah ; and behold, 1 a greater than Jonah 
is here. 

1 Gr. more than. 

31. a greater than Solomon. This would have been a tremendous 
assumption in the ears of a Jewish audience. It is worthy of notice 
that Jewish exorcists looked back to Solomon for their formulae 
and incantations (see Jos. Ant. VIII ii 5, and the picturesque story 
by which he illustrates this). 

170 ST LUKE [XI 33-36 

This is one of St Luke s rare doublets (see on viii 16-18). He 
must have had some reason for the repetition of practically the 
same discourse. The saying may have been habitual, and Mat v 15, 
Lk viii 16, xi 33, and Jn viii 12 may all represent genuine occasions 
of such teaching. (For this occasion cf. note on v. 37.) 

This saying also connects itself (see note on v. 14) with the 
recent Feast of Tabernacles, in which St John (viii 12) records 
the teaching about The Light of the World. 

It is the inward darkness of impenitent self-satisfaction that 
asks for a sign : if the soul s eye were normal all would be clear 
with the clarity of single-minded sincerity. 

33 No man, when he hath lighted a lamp, putteth it in 
a cellar, neither under the bushel, but on the stand, that 
they which enter in may see the light. 34 The lamp of thy 
body is thine eye : when thine eye is single, thy whole body 
also is full of light ; but when it is evil, thy body also is full 
of darkness. 35 Look therefore whether the light that is in 
thee be not darkness. 36 If therefore thy whole body be full 
of light, having no part dark, it shall be wholly full of light, 
as when the lamp with its bright shining doth give thee light. 

(e) 37-54 Denunciation of Pharisees and Lawyers at a Break 
fast in a Pharisee s House 

This passage is largely parallel with the longer denunciation of 
Scribes and Pharisees put by St Matthew (xxiii 13-36) into our 
Lord s mouth in the Temple at Jerusalem, shortly before His 
Passion. St Luke records such a second denunciation (xx 45-47) 
though very briefly (cf. Mat xxiii 1-7). Either he has transferred 
the bulk of the common material (not all of it written, see notes on 
vv. 39 and 44) to this earlier occasion ; or, more probably, St Matthew, 
in the manner of his Sermon on the Mount, has grouped scattered 
utterances together. 

The neighbourhood of Jerusalem (see note introductory to 
ch xi) is in any case the most natural scene for such a discourse. 

It falls into two sections : (a) the occasion (vv. 37, 38) and the 
denunciation of the Pharisees (vv. 39-^4) ; (6) the denunciation of 
the Lawyers (w. 45-52) and the resulting hostility of the Pharisaic 
party (vv. 53, 54). 

37 Now as he spake, a Pharisee asketh him to 1 dine with 
him : and he went in, and sat down to meat. 38 And when the 

1 Gr. breakfast. 

xi 37-54] ST LUKE 171 

Pharisee saw it, he marvelled that he had not first washed 
before 1 dinner. 39 And the Lord said unto him, Now do ye 
Pharisees cleanse the outside of the cup and of the platter ; 
but your inward part is full of extortion and wickedness. 
40 Ye foolish ones, did not he that made the outside make the 
inside also ? 41 Howbeit give for alms those things which 
2 are within ; and behold, all things are clean unto you. 
42 But woe unto you Pharisees ! for ye tithe mint and 
rue and every herb, and pass over judgement and the love of 
God : but these ought ye to have done, and not to leave 
the other undone. 43 Woe unto you Pharisees ! for ye love 
the chief seats in the synagogues, and the salutations in the 
marketplaces. 44 Woe unto you ! for ye are as the tombs 
which appear not, and the men that walk over them know 
it not. 45 And one of the lawyers answering saith unto him, 
3 Master, in saying this thou reproachest us also. 46 And he 
said, Woe unto you lawyers also ! for ye lade men with 
burdens grievous to be borne, and ye yourselves touch not the 
burdens with one of your fingers. 47 Woe unto you ! for ye 
build the tombs of the prophets, and your fathers killed them. 

48 So ye are witnesses and consent unto the works of your 
fathers : for they killed them, and ye build their tombs. 

49 Therefore also said the wisdom of God, I will send unto 
them prophets and apostles ; and some of them they shall kill 
and persecute ; 50 that the blood of all the prophets, which 
was shed from the foundation of the world, may be required 
of this generation ; 51 from the blood of Abel unto the 
blood of Zachariah, who perished between the altar and the 
4 sanctuary : yea, I say unto you, it shall be required of this 
generation. 52 Woe unto you lawyers ! for ye took away 
the key of knowledge : ye entered not in yourselves, and 
them that were entering in ye hindered. 53 And when he was 
come out from thence, the scribes and the Pharisees began 
to ^ress upon him vehemently, and to provoke him to speak 
of ^any things ; 54 laying wait for him, to catch something 
out of his mouth. 

1 Gr. breakfast. 2 Or, ye can 3 Or, Teacher * Gr. house. 

6 Or, set themselves vehemently against him 6 Or, more 

172 ST LUKE [XI 37-39 

37. as he spake, &c. The note of the occasion. Cf . note on v. 27. 
The aorist (AaA^o-eu) means rather after He had spoken. 

to dine. It is the earlier meal of breakfast (distinguished in 
xiv 12 where for dinner we should render breakfast from 
dinner or supper ) that is here named. This was taken, on the 
Sabbath, after early morning prayers at the Synagogue. It is 
difficult therefore to crowd in all the events of w. 14-36 into the 
previous hours of the day. Perhaps the discourse on Light (which 
has nothing corresponding to it in the Matthaean parallel) may be 
detached, and placed in the morning following the case of v. 14 sqq. 

38. he marvelled. This is a sure token that it was not in any 
unfriendly spirit that the Pharisee had invited our Lord. He had 
apparently expected normal Pharisaical behaviour of the young 
Prophet. There may, however, have been malice seething already 
in the hearts of many of the guests (cf . v. 53). 

that he had not first washed. The Pharisaic washings whether 
of vessels, &c., or of their own hands originally based on the 
Levitical ordinances which themselves had a large element of 
primitive hygiene, had become complicated and formal. They 
washed their hands, e. g. not only before a meal, but between the 

A fuller description of these ablutions is given in Mk vii 3, 4, 
part of St Luke s Great Omission. 

If our Lord had come in straight from contact with a demoniac 
this would be the more shocking to the Pharisee. But it is not 
certain that He had (see note on v. 37). 

39-44. And the Lord said unto him. The first verses here (39-41) 
are an exposure of Pharisaic shortcomings ; the next three record 
three Woes upon the Pharisees ; cf . the four Woes of the Great 
Sermon, vi 24-26. On the use of the title Lord, see note on vii 13. 
The three distinctions of the Pharisees were (a) to use nothing 
that had not been tithed, (6) to observe the laws of purification, and 
(c) to avoid familiar intercourse with non-Pharisees. We may 
suppose (cf. Edersheim, L. & T. ii 212) that the conversation at 
table had been turned upon these subjects, probably as a method 
of covert attack upon the Guest, whose presence involved a breach 
of (c). 

39. Now do ye Pharisees : Now is apparently emphatic. The 
original Levitical ordinances have been elaborated to such an extent 

your inward part. The interpretation of this argument is a little 
difficult, because the inward (TO lo-wtfev) seems to be used in 
different senses here and in the following verse. (In Mat xxiii 25 
it is the cup and platter that are full of extortion and excess. ) 
There seems to be no true analogy between the outside (material) 
of the cup, &c., and the inside (moral) of the man ; nor a true 
parallel between the inside (moral) of the man, and the contents 
TO. ivovra. (material) of which presumably (v. 41) alms are to be given. 

XI 39-45] ST LUKE 173 

We must, however, interpret either : (a) What is the good of 
scrupulous external cleansing of your vessels when your own internal 
life is so corrupt ? Both you and your possessions are ultimately 
God s, and the true cleansing is to give your own inner life in alms. 
Or (6) Instead of meticulous cleansing of external things (while 
your inner life is corrupt with self-seeking), turn to a life of generosity 
and cleanse your vessels by giving away their contents in alms. 

This corresponds to, and spiritualizes, Mat xxiii 26, cleanse first 
the inside of the cup and of the platter. The puzzling phenomena of 
the two traditions here suggest oral transmission. Cf . note on v. 44 
and on xxiv 7. 

42-44. Three Woes on the Pharisees in general, balancing the 
three Woes (vv. 46, 47, 52) on the Lawyers. Their petty scrupulous 
ness, their pretensions, their hypocrisy. 

42. mint and rue and every herb. Cf. Mat xxiii 23, ye tithe 
mint and anise (or dill) and cummin. They interpret tiny herbs as 
harvest to be tithed, and meanwhile neglect great fundamental 
principles. In modern parlance, They cannot see the wood for the 
trees nor the trees for the luxuriant undergrowth ! 

judgement and the love of God (Matthew : judgement and mercy 
and faith ) : judgement in Hebraistic language stands for rectitude 
true discrimination between right and wrong. 

these ought ye to have done, &c. A very far-reaching principle. 
Carefulness about trifles is useless and dangerous if accompanied 
by neglect of principles. The latter come first and should be the 
motive and raison d etre of the former. 

43. ye love. The word used suggests that the love they owe to 
God they divert to their own self-glorification. Cf . Jn xii 43. 

the chief seats . . . salutations. Matthew (xxiii 6) adds the chief 
place at feasts, a point which Luke reserves for another occasion 
when our Lord was guest of a Pharisee (xiv 7 sqq.). The chief 
seats in the Synagogue are a semicircular bench on a da is facing 
the congregation, answering more or less to the presbytery in the 
apse of an early Christian Church. 

44. tombs which appear not. Their hypocrisy causes their true 
character to be entirely hidden from the popular view. Here is a 
most interesting variation from St Matthew, which suggests that 
the respective sources drawn on by each Evangelist may have come 
from an oral logion in which Pharisees were compared to tombs, 
which acquired two different forms and meanings in the course 
of transmission (cf. note on xxiv 7). In Mat xxiii 27 we have the 
same theme hypocrisy, which deceives men as to the inner reality 
but there they are compared not to unseen tombs, but to tombs 
outwardly whitened, inwardly full of dead men s bones, and of all 

45. one of the lawyers. A Pharisee himself perhaps, but a 
specialized type scribe of the Law. These, says Edersheim 
(L. & T. ii 212 sq.), were apt to look down on the narrowness and 

174 ST LUKE [XI 45-49 

bigotry of the less learned Pharisees. St Matthew (xxiii 13 sqq. 
classes Scribes and Pharisees together throughout. 

thou reproachest us also. Bather insultest even us the very 
cream of Pharisaism. The verb (v(3p%fLv) is the shamefully 
entreating of xviii 32. 

46. ye lade men with burdens, cfcc. Matthew (xxiii 4) makes 
this, like the reference to chief seats part, not of the formal 
denunciation, but of a discourse to the disciples introducing it. 
They make the Law, in itself rigorous, intolerable by their more 
rigorous interpretations. Their whole tendency is to tighten, and 
they will not raise a finger in the direction of reasonable relaxation. 
Some would see here a reference to scribal evasion of the Law. That 
seems doubtful : but cf. the Corban passage in Mk vii 11. Cf. 
St Peter s reference in the Council at Jerusalem (Ac xv 10) to the 
yoke upon the neck, which neither our fathers nor we were able 
to bear. 

grievous to be borne : not elsewhere in N.T., but occurs in LXX 
of Prov xx vii 3. Godet points out that this corresponds to the first 
Woe of the Pharisees, v. 42, for literalism is twin brother of 

47-51. ye build . . . your fathers killed. The next count in the 
indictment is that of persecuting orthodoxy. They carry on 
and complete the work of their fathers, who were murderers of 
prophets. Whether our Lord is referring to actual building of 
tombs, such as the Tombs of the Prophets now shown outside 
Jerusalem on the Mount of Olives, is doubtful. In Mat xxiii 29 
that is the natural interpretation ; here it might be pure metaphor. 
Their spirit and temper was precisely that of their ancestors who in 
old days tried to stamp out the prophetic movement because it did 
not square with the orthodoxy of their day. Eventually it declared 
itself in the judicial murder of One greater than the prophets. 

49. Therefore also said the wisdom of God. Mat xxiii 34 intro 
duces a like passage with Therefore, behold, I send unto you . . . 
direct from the mouth of Jesus. There is, however, no parallel for 
the Lord describing Himself as the wisdom of God though 
St Paul so describes Him ( 1 Cor i 24, 30) . The phrase is very puzzling, 
and the best interpretation seems to make it stand for the witness 
of Providence in history and prophecy. As we might say : History 
shows as plainly as Prophecy has foretold how God has sent you 
His messengers, and how you have treated them. The nearest 
approach to an apposite O.T. quotation is perhaps that adduced 
by Godet from Prov i 20-31. It is the voice of the personified 
Wisdom. See further, note on xiii 35. 

prophets and apostles. Matthew has prophets, wise men, and 
scribes, which might almost stand for the entire O.T. (Prophetic 
Books, Wisdom-Literature and Law). It is not clear whether 
apostles is here to be taken in the definitely N.T. sense, or as 
messengers, envoys : probably the latter. 

xi so-xn i -i 2] ST LUKE 175 

50. that the blood . . . may be required. They were (Mat xxiii 32) 
filling up the measure of their fathers, and in the phrase His 
blood be on us, and on our children (Mat xxvii 25) they were, 
in a few months time, to accept the blood-guiltiness of the ages. 
That generation was to pay its debt forty years after in the 
horrors of the siege of Jerusalem with which the pages of Josephus 
have made us familiar. 

51. from the blood of Abel unto the blood of Zachariah, i. e. all the 
blood-guiltiness recorded in the O.T. from the first pages of Genesis 
(Gen iv 8 sqq.) to the last book of the Hagiographa (2 Chron xxiv 
20-22) : point is added to our Lord s words in v. 50 when we recall 
Zachariah s dying utterance The Lord look upon it and require it. 

52. ye took away the key of knowledge. The third Woe is pro 
nounced upon their Monopoly of Theology (Godet). The people 
they kept at arm s length, calling them am ha-aretz men of the 
earth (cf . Jn vii 49, This multitude which knoweth not the law 
are accursed, and contrast our Lord s attitude : to Him there is 
no such thing as a rabble, Latham, Pastor Pastorum, p. 204) ; and 
their false interpretations shut off the Law as a salutary influence 
from themselves as well as from others. It is as if a man should 
lock up that which himself and others needed, and then throw away 
or lose the key. Key has become a familiar figure in educational 
contexts. The Key to an exercise, to a problem, and so forth. 

53. when he was come out, <fec. This description of Pharisaic 
hostility is purely Lucan. It leads up to our Lord s counsel of xii 1. 

press upon him vehemently. In Mk vi 19 the same verb (eVe xeti ), 
used of Herodias attitude to the Baptist, is translated she set 
herself against him ; and the marg. is probably better here : set 
themselves vehemently against him, or we might render kept 
themselves intently on the alert against him. 

provoke him to speak. The verb is used of a teacher prompting 
a pupil to recite. They plied Him, we might say, with leading 

of many things : lit. concerning more things. They widened 
the scope of their questionings as one might spread out a net. 

54. laying wait . . . to catch. Vivid hunting metaphors. 

(f) XII 1-12 Frankness and Fear 

The greater part of the utterances in this chapter are found also 
in St Matthew, either (a) in the Sermon on the Mount (vv. 5-7), or 
(6) in the Charge to the Twelve (x 5-42), or (c) in the Eschatological 
Discourse (xxiv 4-51). The introductory verse (xii 1) seems to link 
them here both to one another and to what precedes. The proba 
bility is that Luke found them together in Q, and Matthew dispersed 
them (see Oxf. Stud., pp. 123-124). 

In this first paragraph frank sincerity is inculcated as against 
the hypocrisy of the Pharisees, and fear of God to the exclusion of 
all other fears. 

176 ST LUKE [Xlli-i 2 

XII In the mean time, when Hhe many thousands of the 
multitude were gathered together, insomuch that they trode 
one upon another, he began to 2 say unto his disciples first of 
all, Beware ye of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy. 
2 But there is nothing covered up, that shall not be revealed : 
and hid, that shall not be known. 3 Wherefore whatsoever ye 
have said in the darkness shall be heard in the light ; and 
what ye have spoken in the ear in the inner chambers shall be 
proclaimed upon the housetops. 4 And I say unto you my 
friends, Be not afraid of them which kill the body, and after 
that have no more that they can do. 5 But I will warn you 
whom ye shall fear : Fear him, which after he hath killed 
hath Spower to cast into 4 hell ; yea, I say unto you, Fear him. 
6 Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings ? and not 
one of them is forgotten hi the sight of God. 7 But the very 
hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not : ye are of 
more value than many sparrows. 8 And I say unto you, 
Every one who shall confess 5 me before men, 6 him shall the 
Son of man also confess before the angels of God : 9 but he 
that denieth me in the presence of men shall be denied in the 
presence of the angels of God. 10 And every one who shall 
speak a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him : 
but unto him that blasphemeth against the Holy Spirit it 
shall not be forgiven. 11 And when they bring you before the 
synagogues, and the rulers, and the authorities, be not 
anxious how or what ye shall answer, or what ye shall say : 
12 for the Holy Spirit shall teach you in that very hour 
what ye ought to say. 

1 Gr. the, myriads of. 2 Or, say unto his disciples, First of all beware ye 

3 Or, authority * Gr. Gehenna. 6 Gr. in me. 6 Gr. in him. 

1. the many thousands : lit. the myriads, an obvious hyperbole. 
But it clearly represents a critical moment in this later ministry 
as St Luke conceived it. The scene at the end of the breakfast 
had developed itself out in the street, and a vast crowd had collected 
to hear the Pharisees and Lawyers denounced. 

Beware ye of the leaven. So in Mat xvi 6 of the leaven of the 
Pharisees and Sadducees, which is explained in xvi 12 as the 
teaching of the Pharisees, &c. (cf. Mk viii 16-21). Here, however, 
the leaven is clearly not their teaching, but their example of 
hypocrisy. This phrase is the only apparent excerpt in Luke from 

xiii-io] ST LUKE 177 

the chapters of the Great Omission (Mk vi viii). It is probably 
only apparent (cf . Hawkins, Oxf. Stud., p. 71), and most likely repre 
sents an actual repetition by our Lord of the same phrase on an 
entirely different occasion, and with a quite different application. 

2-9. there is nothing covered up, &c. These verses are parallel 
to Mat x 26-33. The idea is the same as that of Lk viii 17, but the 
application is not the same. There it was the necessity of spreading 
and passing on the light ; here it is the warning that hypocrisy will 
not be hid. In Matthew it is a call to the Twelve on their Mission to 
boldness and fearlessness of speech : and his parallels with what 
follows are such as to suggest a double form of Q or possibly an 
independent tradition. 

4. my friends. This intimate address to inspire courage and 
loyalty in face of the growing hostility indicated in xi 53, 54. Cf. 
the still more touching intimacy of Jn xv 13-15, on the eve of the 
supreme struggle. 

5. Fear him, which . . . hath power. The power, or rather 
authority, named marks this object of fear as none other than 
God Himself. And though the interpretation involves a double 
use of the word fear (which is involved indeed in the apparently 
contradictory fear not of v. 7), it is true that the fear of God 
(1 Pet ii 17) is inculcated in the N.T. as in the O.T. In the latter, 
however, it becomes the reverence inseparable from love a love 
which, when perfected, banishes all unworthy fear (1 Jn iv 18). 

Fear Him ye saints, and ye will then 
Have nothing else to fear. 

6. Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings ? The God whom 
alone you need to fear cares for the tiniest of His creatures, and for 
every small detail of your life. The farthing is more nearly a 
penny. In Mat x 29 the price is put at two sparrows for 1 assarion. 
Deissmann (op. cit., pp. 270-273) adduces evidence from the reign of 
Diocletian that sparrows were then, as in the first century, the 
cheapest birds on the market. Diocletian fixed the maximum price 
at 3 1 as for ten birds. 

7. the very hairs of your head. In modern phraseology, God s 
loving and wise care is evidenced not only by the telescope but by 
the microscope. This is the Charter of a detailed Providence ; 
cf. Mat vi 25 sqq. 

ye are of more value . . . : here the submerged a fortiori argument 
comes to the surface. 

8. 9. Every one who shall confess me. This saying follows also 
in Mat x 32, 33, and was therefore almost certainly in the common 
source Q, especially as the connexion of thought is not obvious. 
The converse whosoever shall be ashamed, &c., occurred in Lk 
ix 26, in connexion with the first Prediction of the Passion. 

10. blasphemeth against the Holy Spirit. This may have been 
here in the source. Matthew, following Mark, associates it with 
the Beelzebul incident (Mat xii 31 sqq. s Mk iii 28-30) and the 

L. 12 

178 ST LUKE [XII 11-13 

imputation to Jesus of alliance with evil spirits. The other Synop- 
tists also emphasize the peril, carrying on the impossibility of forgive 
ness into the world to come. 

The best explanation of this much -discussed doctrine seems to 
be that persistent preference for evil over good, for darkness over 
light, leads to the atrophy of the soul s power to assimilate Divine 
grace. The principle which underlies Dante s Inferno is ultimately 
this. The doomed souls there dreeing their weird have attained 
that towards which they deliberately set themselves in this life. 
It is like the inexorable working of a natural law. Cf. Heb vi 4, 
Un v 16. 

11, 12. bring you before the synagogues. The same thought, in 
different words, occurs in the great Eschatological Discourse in 
xxi 14, 15. There it comes as counsel in face of proximate diffi 
culties ; here as reassurance in view of the warning of v. 10, Do not 
be afraid of being betrayed into such blasphemy when under hostile 
cross-questioning. Your own loyalty will guarantee you the 
guidance of the Holy Spirit Himself. This, the only definite 
function assigned to the Holy Spirit in the Synoptic Gospels, 
exactly illustrates the title and work of the Comforter in Jn xvi 8-12. 
Doubtless this doublet represents two different sayings, the latter 
perhaps uttered with tacit reference to the former. On the juris 
diction of the Synagogue, see note on vi 22. 

(g) 13-21 Warning against Covetousness ; The Rich Fool 

Peculiar to St Luke. An incident is made the text of a parabolic 
Sermon, vv. 13-15 are found in two ostraca (inscribed tiles or 
potsherds) ascribed to the seventh century. Deissmann, op. cit., 
p. 50 ; cf. note on xxii 41 sqq. For St Luke s special interest in 
the use and responsibilities of Wealth, see Introd., p. xli. 

13 And one out of the multitude said unto him, 1 Master, 
bid my brother divide the inheritance with me. 14 But he 
said unto him, Man, who made me a judge or a divider over 
you ? 15 And he said unto them, Take heed, and keep your 
selves from all covetousness : 2 for a man s life consisteth not 
in the abundance of the things which he possesseth. 

1 Or, Teacher 

2 Gr. for not in a man s abundance consisteth his life, from the things which he 

13. Master, bid my brother. On the Law of Inheritance see 
Edersheim, L. & T. ii 243, and note. There is no hint as to how far 
the claim was justified or whether the brother was prepared to 
accept arbitration. The request, though misguided, implies at any 
rate that the man looked up to our Lord. Its motive, however, is 
laid bare in v. 15, and that itself is enough to account for Christ s 

XII 14-20] ST LUKE 179 

refusal to arbitrate. It was more than covetousness if a younger 
brother aimed at getting a share of the first-born s double portion. 

14. who made me a judge, &c. Go to the constituted authority 
is the implication : our Lord is rendering unto Caesar (xx 25). 
His kingdom is not of this world (Jn xviii 36). He repudiated 
such an office definitely at the Temptation (iv 5-8). In a wider and 
sublimer sense, His mission is to judge (Jn v 22, ix 39). Nor is He 
condemning the institution of human law and justice. The dis 
claimer is personal to Himself and to the occasion and does not 
clash, e. g., with 1 Cor vi 1 sqq. 

15. Take heed, and keep yourselves from all covetousness. Covet 
ousness here means all desire for selfish ownership. 

for a man s life, &c. The Greek is a little intricate (see R.V. 
marg.). Plummer well paraphrases : it does not follow, because 
a man has abundance, that his life consists in wealth. 

16-21. PARABLE OF THE RICH FOOL. This Lucan Parable 
may be classed among those (cf . xiv 15-24, xviii 1-8) which imply 
a sense of humour ; though the humour of the situation, with its 
dramatic irony, is of a very terrible kind. See Trench, Parables, 
pp. 337-347. 

16 And he spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground 
of a, certain rich man brought forth plentifully : 17 and he 
reasoned within himself, saying, What shall I do, because 
I have not where to bestow my fruits ? 18 And he said, 
This will I do : I will pull down my barns, and build greater ; 
and there will I bestow all my corn and my goods. 19 And 
I will say to my ^oul, 1 Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for 
many years ; take thine ease, eat, drink, be merry. 20 But 
God said unto him, Thou foolish one, this night 2 is thy ^oul 
required of thee ; and the things which thou hast prepared, 
whose shall they be ? 21 So is he that layeth up treasure for 
himself, and is not rich toward God. 

1 Or, life 2 Gr. they require thy soul. 

17. my fruits, &c. Part of the humour of the parable consists 
in the picture of the complacent egoist : my . . . my . . . my 
. . . my , repeated four times in these verses. It recalls the words 
of the historic fool Nabal (whose name means fool ) in 1 Sam 
xxv 11 : Shall I then take my bread, and my water, and my flesh 
that I have killed for my shearers . . . ? 

19. / will say to my soul, &c. The materialists paradise, involv 
ing no education of soul, except a certain elementary management 
of finance with a view to enjoyment of the grosser luxuries. 

20. is thy soul required : lit. They are demanding thy life. 


180 ST LUKE [XII 21-32 

For this common Rabbinical paraphrase for God, see xii 48 and 
note on xvi 9. It might, however, refer to the angels as God s 

21. rich toward God : cf. xvi 9 and Mat vi 19, 20, Treasure in 
heaven. Outward enrichment, as Trench observes (op. cit., p. 346), 
if made one s purpose of existence, is itself an inward impoverishment ; 
for there is a continual draining off to worldly objects of those 
affections which should have found their only satisfying object in 
God. There seems to be a conscious reminiscence of this parable 
in 1 Tim vi 17-19. 

(h) 22-34 Warning against Anxiety 

Instruction on trustful reliance upon God s providence, in the 
spirit of Mat vi 25-34, 19-21. The right confidence, as opposed to 
the wrong confidence of the Rich fool. 

The following sections, to the end of the chapter, are found in 
St Matthew : (a) Sermon on Mount, (b) Eschatological Discourse, 
(c) Charge to the Twelve, and (d) Sermon on Mount again. There 
is nothing Marcan here. 

Most probably Luke found them together in his source Q, and 
Matthew distributed them, after his manner. 

22 And he said unto his disciples, Therefore I say unto you, 
Be not anxious for your ^ife, what ye shall eat ; nor yet for 
your body, what ye shall put on. 23 For the ^ife is more than 
the food, and the body than the raiment. 24 Consider the 
ravens, that they sow not, neither reap ; which have no store- 
chamber nor barn ; and God feedeth them : of how much 
more value are ye than the birds ! 25 And which of you by 
being anxious can add a cubit unto his 2 stature ? 26 If then 
ye are not able to do even that which is least, why are ye 
anxious concerning the rest ? 27 Consider the lilies, how they 
grow : they toil not, neither do they spin ; yet I say unto you, 
Even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 
28 But if God doth so clothe the grass in the field, which 
to-day is, and to-morrow is cast into the oven ; how much 
more shall he clothe you, O ye of little faith ? 29 And seek 
not ye what ye shall eat, and what ye shall drink, neither be 
ye of doubtful mind. 30 For all these things do the nations 
of the world seek after : but your Father knoweth that ye 
have need of these things. 31 Howbeit seek ye 3 his kingdom, 
and these things shall be added unto you. 32 Fear not, little 

1 Or, soul 3 Or, age 3 Many ancient authorities read the kingdom of God. 

XII 22-28] ST LUKE 181 

flock ; for it is your Father s good pleasure to give you the 
kingdom. 33 Sell that ye have, and give alms ; make for 
yourselves purses which wax not old, a treasure in the heavens 
that faileth not, where no thief draweth near, neither moth 
destroy eth. 34 For where your treasure is, there will your 
heart be also. 

22. unto his disciples. The parable had been addressed to the 

for your life. The word (i/o^) is often rendered soul, as it 
was in v. 19. Here (as there) it means the human life not especially 
the immortal, spiritual part of man. 

24. Consider the ravens. So Job xxxviii 41, Who provideth 
for the raven his food, when his young ones cry unto God, and 
wander for lack of meat ? As a matter of fact one of the marvels 
of bird-life is the feeding of the young ravens (cf. Ps cxlvii 9) who 
do nothing to supply their own voracious appetites till they are 
old enough to pair. 

they sow not, &c. This cannot be intended as a counsel of im 
providence. It is rather a warning against that over-reliance upon 
dividends, and that degeneration of thrift into grasping greed which 
are characteristic of our time. 

25. which of you . . . stature ? The word, 7?Aua, in ii 52 and 
xix 3 means stature ; here probably, as in Jn ix 21, 23, age, 
length of life. A cubit (about 18 inches) would not be a small thing 
(v. 26) in a man s height ! Yet it seems almost as strange to apply 
it to length of days. 

26. even that which is least. Omitted by Codex Bezae (D), and 
also from the parallel passage in Mat vi 25 sqq. If the words are 
an early gloss, they still show a primitive scribe s interpretation of 
fjXiKia in the previous verse. 

27. Consider the lilies. Probably the scarlet anemones of the 
Palestinian spring. It was a part of our Lord s human perfection 
that He so obviously delighted in the beauties of Nature. Our 
modern appreciation of landscape comes to us not from the Graeco- 
Roman civilization, but rather through Christianity from the O.T., 
which (especially in the Psalms) gloried in the wonders of the visible 
world not so much for their own sake as for their revelation of the 
Creator. This utterance of our Lord, while illustrating a religious 
principle, has in it more of the modern delight in natural beauty 
as such. 

Solomon. The acme, for Judaism, both of wisdom and of material 
splendour. 1 Kgs iii 11-13, 28 ; iv 29-34 ; x 1-13 : cf. Lk xi 31. 

28. so clothe the grass in the field. Either the lilies are identified 
with the grass (as in Swiss meadows the hay is more than half 
flowers) or they are regarded as adorning it. The field in Hebrew 
usage means the open moor. 

182 ST LUKE [XII 28-37 

cast into the oven, i. e. used as fuel. 

ye of little faith : uttered, surely, not sternly but kindly. 

29. of doubtful mind. This explains the foregoing counsel. It 
is not that we are forbidden to seek and earn our daily bread, but 
that we are not to do this tossed on the waves of a sordid anxiety 
(the metaphor seems to be a nautical one). Edersheim (ii 217) 
urges that, in view of the invariable usage of LXX, we should render, 
neither be ye uplifted with earthly ambition. 

30. the nations of the world. A Rabbinical rather than a Scrip 
tural expression. They seek with undue anxiety, not sure (as His 
children are cf. Your Father ) of God s providence. 

31. seek ye his kingdom. Matthew (vi 33) adds and his 
righteousness. The cares of this world (Lk viii 14) are among 
the chief obstacles to the cultivation of the religious life, and the 
religious life (we are told here) is the best antidote to such cares. 

32. Fear not, little flock . . . Preserved by Luke alone. An 
encouragement to that small group among the multitudes (xii 1) 
who know the Shepherd and are known of Him (Jn x 14). It adds 
point to the teaching on the Good Shepherd delivered not long 
before (Edersheim, L. & T. ii 217). 

33. Sell that ye have, &c. Is this a precept demanding literal 
and universal observance on the part of Christ s disciples ? It is 
easy to water down the Gospel precepts and accommodate them 
to our own taste and habit. But while guarding against this 
tendency in ourselves, we must not neglect the evidence, e. g. of 
viii 3, that Christ numbered wealthy people among His followers, 
and made us6 of their wealth. 

(i) 35-48 Readiness and Stewardship 

The next four verses have no parallel in Matthew, though the 
same lesson is given, at greater length, in the Parable of the Ten 
Virgins (Mat xxv 1-13). There is similar teaching also in Mk xiii 
34-37, where, however, no Marriage Feast comes in. In Matthew 
the lord is the bridegroom, in Luke a guest returning home after 
the festivities. In Matthew it is the lord who opens to the 
Virgins ; in Luke the servants to their lord. vv. 39-^46 = Mat 
xxiv 43-51. 

35 Let your loins be girded about, and your lamps burning ; 

36 and be ye yourselves like unto men looking for their lord, 
when he shall return from the marriage feast ; that, when he 
cometh and knocketh, they may straightway open unto him. 

37 Blessed are those Servants, whom the lord when he cometh 
shall find watching : verily I say unto you, that he shall gird 
himself, and make them sit down to meat, and shall come and 

1 Gr. bondservants. 

XII 3S-4i] ST LUKE 183 

serve them. 38 And if he shall come in the second watch, 
and if in the third, and find them so, blessed are those servants. 
39 *But know this, that if the master of the house had known 
in what hour the thief was coming, he would have watched, 
and not have left his house to be 2 broken through. 40 Be ye 
also ready : for in an hour that ye think not the Son of man 

1 Or, But this ye know 2 Gr. digged through. 

35. Let your loins be girded, &c. Familiar to us English Church 
men as the Gospel for the Ordination of Deacons. 

37. watching. Awake, alert. On the duty of watchfulness, cf. 
Mk xiii 37. 

he shall gird himself, &c. As Jn xiii 1-11 records our Lord Him 
self did, to wash His disciples feet at the Last Supper. These 
sayings hover between parable, allegory, and plain injunction. The 
parable proper gives a more normal picture of life, and draws 
analogies : e. g. in xvii 7-10 (where the lesson is a different one) He 
gives the normal picture of tired servants having to wait on their 
master before taking their own supper. 

38. the second watch . . . third : probably by the Jewish reckon 
ing, i. e. the 2nd from midnight to 3 a.m. and the 3rd from 
3 to 6 a.m. (The 2nd will be the middle watch of Judg vii 19.) 
Edersheim, however (ii 218), thinks the Jews had already adopted, 
in the time of Christ, the Roman reckoning by four watches. 

39. 40. The Parable, as Peter calls it (v. 41), of the House 
Breaking. A parabolic utterance reproduced also by Matthew 
(xxiv 43), and therefore probably drawn from Q. 

39. the thief : the burglar as we should say. It may have been 
this saying of our Lord s a picturesque way of describing a sudden 
and unexpected arrival that gave rise to the frequent expressions 
elsewhere in N.T. in which His Advent is compared to a thief in 
the night. Cf. 1 Thess v 2, Rev iii 3, xvi 15. 

broken through : lit. dug through, the walls being of dried mud. 
Wycliffe s myned associates itself with our post-war vocabulary. 

our Lord s question of v. 42 follows immediately on v. 40. Sir J. 
Hawkins (Oxf. Stud., p. 124) holds that v. 41 was drawn by Luke 
from Q, and omitted by Matthew in his homiletical grouping of 

41 And Peter said, Lord, speakest thou this parable unto 
us, or even unto all ? 42 And the Lord said, Who then is Hhe 
faithful and wise steward, whom his lord shall set over his 
household, to give them their portion of food in due season ? 

1 Or, the faithful steward, the wise man whom, <&e. 

184 ST LUKE [XH 4 i- 4 8 

43 Blessed is that Servant, whom his lord when he cometh 
shall find so doing. 44 Of a truth I say unto you, that he 
will set him over all that he hath. 45 But if that Servant 
shall say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming ; and shall 
begin to beat the menservants and the maidservants, and to 
eat and drink, and to be drunken ; 46 the lord of that Servant 
shall come in a day when he expecteth not, and in an hour 
when he knoweth not, and shall 2 cut him asunder, and appoint 
his portion with the unfaithful. 47 And that Servant, which 
knew his lord s will, and made not ready, nor did according 
to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes ; 48 but he 
that knew not, and did things worthy of stripes, shall be 
beaten with few stripes. And to whomsoever much is given, 
of him shall much be required : and to whom they commit 
much, of him will they ask the more. 

1 Gr. bondservant. 2 Or, severely scourge him 

41. And Peter said . . . The insertion (or retention) of such 
questions at points of transition in subject of discourse (cf. xiii 23, 
xvii 37) is noted by McLachlan as characteristic of St Luke (St Luke, 
Evang. & Hist., p. 19). 

42. And the Lord said. For this title, cf. note on vii 13. 

Who then is the faithful and wise steward . . . ? Here as elsewhere 
(cf. xx 3) Christ answers one question by asking another which 
throws the responsibility back upon the questioner. All, it is 
implied, have the responsibility of stewardship, but not all rise to 
the occasion. The phrase recalls St Paul s It is required in stewards, 
that a man be found faithful (1 Cor iv 2). 

to give them their portion : their rations. This duty of the 
major-domo devolves in the Church upon the Apostles, and so upon 
the Ministry. They must not lord it over the charge (1 Pet v 3). 

44. he will set him over, &c. The reward of fidelity is further 
responsibility. The heavenly Master does not manumit His slaves, 
except in the sense of Nunc Dimittis, but promotes them to higher 
service. His service is perfect freedom. 

46. cut him asunder. A grim word used in LXX of cutting a 
ram in pieces in sacrifice (Ex xxix 17). But possibly a wrong turn 
has been given in the translation to the Aramaic pasak, which might 
also mean cut off, set apart (P. L.). There are three grades of 
punishment named in w. 46-48a. (1) This, for disloyalty and 
tyranny ; (2) for deliberate neglect of duty ; and (3) for mistakes 
committed in ignorance. 

48. they commit much. The phrase may simply mean much is 
committed, and indeed the whole context is so human that we 

xii 49, 50] ST LUKE 185 

might well supply men ; but by analogy with xii 21 and xvi 10 
(where see note) it may definitely refer to God s committal. 

(j) 49-59 The First Advent and the Signs of the Times 
Here w. 51-53 =Mat x 34-36, and 57-59 =Mat v 25-26. 

49 I came to cast fire upon the earth ; and what will I, if 
it is already kindled ? 50 But I have a baptism to be bap 
tized with ; and how am I straitened till it be accomplished ! 
51 Think ye that I am come to give peace in the earth ? 
I tell you, Nay ; but rather division : 52 for there shall be 
from henceforth five in one house divided, three against two, 
and two against three. 53 They shall be divided, father 
against son, and son against father ; mother against daughter, 
and daughter against her mother ; mother in law against her 
daughter in law, and daughter in law against her mother in 

49. / came to cast fire upon the earth : more emphatic Fire is 
what I came to cast . . . Cf. the saying preserved by Origen (Horn, 
in Jer. xx 3), Near Me, near the fire. The next two verses have no 
real parallel in Matthew or Mark, though Matthew has in x 34 a saying 
of similar import : I came not to cast peace (on the earth), but a 
sword the sword, i. e. of strife and division. That (see w. 51 sqq.) 
is the ultimate effect of this fire ; but though fire and sword are 
familiarly coupled as instruments of war, the fire here would seem 
to be more than a merely destructive agency. The Baptism of Fire 
predicted by St John (iii 16) may not be identical with this flame ; 
but it is the searching, testing quality of Christ s teaching that makes 
it like fire (cf . Mai iii 2, 3) ; that which, in the fourth Gospel ( Jn ix 39), 
He expresses in the words, For judgement came I into this world. 
The tongues of fire of Ac ii mark the descent of that spirit Who 
is to convict the world ... of sin, and of righteousness, and of 
judgement (Jn xvi 8-11). 

what will I, if it is already kindled ? What have I left to wish 
for ? Or possibly, with a different punctuation, What will I ? 
Would that it were already kindled ! (as Origen, ap. Plummer). 

50. But I have a baptism, &c. The adversative form of the 
sentence favours the first interpretation of v. 49. After all, there 
is something left to wish for the completion of what lies before me 
in the Passion. He looks forward, in the Passion, to a fresh act of 
self-consecration (cf. Jn xvii 19). He is faced by this baptism of 
blood, and longs to get it over. Matthew and Mark have a similar 
reference to baptism in the answer to James and John (which Luke 
omits), Are ye able to drink the cup that I drink ? or to be 
baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with ? (Mk x 38) : 

186 ST LUKE [XII 50-58 

where the cup is evidently that of the Agony (Mk xiv 36, Lk 
xxii 42). The metaphor of the baptism is probably akin to the 
O.T. metaphor of drowning in a sea of troubles, typically expressed, 
e.g. in Ps Ixix and Jonah ii. 

51. Think ye that I am come to give peace in the earth ? Peace on 
earth to men of God s good will had been proclaimed at His birth, 
as St Luke himself records (ii 14). Inward peace is what He offers 
to His disciples in fullest measure (Jn xiv 27), but it is a peace con 
sistent with tribulation in the world (Jn xvi 33). The testing fire 
of v. 49 must inevitably create first of all divisions and discord. 
So our Lord, though He has a peace to offer such as the world 
cannot give, boldly disillusions those who, following the popular 
Jewish tradition, expect the reign of Messiah to usher in immediate, 
universal peace. 

division. Such division takes place now as often as a Jew 
or a Moslem is converted to Christianity. A more frequent and 
equally striking example is the Hindu convert, who is boycotted 
by all his former circle. 

53. They shall be divided. Father, mother, son and son s wife, 
and daughter. The two elders are pictured as unconverted, and 
bitter against the younger members. No doubt a very typical case 
in all ages and not least in the first years of Christendom. The 
father is constantly at strife with his son, the mother with both 
daughter and daughter-in-law. In the women s case there is a 
change from dative to accusative, which has been thought to 
indicate a more active rancour. It may, however, be simply a case 
of variation in style. 

54-59. THE SIGNS OF THE TIMES. Here our Lord reverts again 
(cf . v. 15) from the Disciples to the Multitude. In Mat xvi 2, 3 there 
is a sentence of the same import, but differently worded. Our Lord 
may very well have used this analogy of the weather-wise more 
than once. 

54 And he said to the multitudes also, When ye see a cloud 
rising in the west, straightway ye say, There cometh a shower ; 
and so it cometh to pass. 55 And when ye see a south wind 
blowing, ye say, There will be a Scorching heat ; and it cometh 
to pass. 56 Ye hypocrites, ye know how to interpret the 
face of the earth and the heaven ; but how is it that ye know 
not how to interpret this time ? 57 And why even of your 
selves judge ye not what is right ? 58 For as thou art going 
with thine adversary before the magistrate, on the way give 
diligence to be quit of him ; lest haply he hale thee unto the 
judge, and the judge shall deliver thee to the 3 ofncer, and 

1 Or, hot wind * Gr. prove. * Gr. exactor. 

Xil54-xilli] ST LUKE 187 

the Officer shall cast thee into prison. 59 I say unto thee, 
Thou shalt by no means come out thence, till thou have paid 
the very last mite. 

1 Gr. exactor. 

54. in the west : bringing heavy rain from the Mediterranean, 
like the cloud so anxiously looked for by Elijah s servant (1 Kga 
xviii 44). 

55. a south wind. The word is used by St Luke alone in N.T. 
for south wind. In Ac xxvii 13 it is the breeze that deceived the 
crew of St Paul s boat into putting to sea from Fair Havens ; in 
Ac xxviii 13, the wind that wafts him safely from Rhegium to 

a scorching heat. The Kauson from the Arabian Desert, answer 
ing to the scirocco in Italy and the south of France. If, as Eder- 
sheim remarks (L. & T. ii 220 n.), the scirocco blows not in Galilee 
but in Peraea, this little touch may strengthen our view as to the 
locality of these sayings. 

56. this time. This (Messianic) season. 

57-59. In view of inevitable divisions, charity and reconciliation 
are all the more to be cultivated. 

57. judge ye not what is right. Cf. Jn vii 24. This phrase and 
the give diligence of next verse, at one time thought solecisms, are 
now proved to belong to the common speech of the time. Deissmann, 
op. cit., pp. 117, 118. 

58. For as thou art going, &c. The connexion is not very clear. 
Perhaps, If you could discern the significance of what is going on 
in human life as you can discern the weather, you would see the 
necessity of immediate reconciliation with your fellows. In the 
first Gospel it has clearly this individual reference coming in the 
Sermon on the Mount, after the interpretation of the Sixth Com 
mandment, and the reconciliation is urged before offering a gift at 
the Altar (Mat v 22, 23). But it may be best to interpret it here 
with a national reference. Christ is the Adversary, claiming His 
due (cf . xx 10) ; God is the Judge, His praetor or agent is the force 
that shall overthrow Jerusalem. Now is the moment to make peace 
with the Messiah. For the judge both Matthew and Luke have 
Kptr^s, for the inferior officer Matthew has the colourless ^Tr^er^s, 
while Luke has Trpa/crwp, which technically denotes an officer who 
keeps record of the fines ordered by the Judge to be paid. 

59. the very last mite : AtTrrov representing half the value of the 
coin mentioned by Matthew (xoSpavT^s = quadrans) and one-eighth 
of the as or do-o-apiov of v. 6. 

(k) XIII 1-9 The Lesson of Calamities ; The Barren Fig-tree 

There is a special interest about such detailed allusions to 
unimportant local events, in that we can be sure that they must 
have been put into writing very early to be preserved (cf . Streeter, 

188 ST LUKE [Xlili.2 

Oxf. Stud., p. 206). The most natural background for this discourse 
is the near neighbourhood of Jerusalem (cf. ref. to Siloam, v. 4). 
The whole section is peculiar to St Luke, and depicts our Lord s 
mind as full of foreboding of the approaching ruin of the Holy City. 

XIII Now there were some present at that very season 
which told him of the Galilseans, whose blood Pilate had 
mingled with their sacrifices. 2 And he answered and said 
unto them, Think ye that these Galilaeans were sinners above 
all the Galilseans, because they have suffered these things ? 
3 I tell you, Nay : but, except ye repent, ye shall all in like 
manner perish. 4 Or those eighteen, upon whom the tower 
in Siloam fell, and killed them, think ye that they were 
Offenders above all the men that dwell in Jerusalem ? 5 I tell 
you, Nay : but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. 
6 And he spake this parable ; A certain man had a fig 
tree planted in his vineyard ; and he came seeking fruit 
thereon, and found none. 7 And he said unto the vine 
dresser, Behold, these three years I come seeking fruit on 
this fig tree, and find none : cut it down ; why doth it also 
cumber the ground ? 8 And he answering saith unto him, 
Lord, let it alone this year also, till I shall dig about it, and 
dung it : 9 and if it bear fruit thenceforth, well ; but if not, 
thou shalt cut it down. 

1 Gr. debtors. 

1. whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. Though 
we have no other record of this particular outrage, such massacres 
were all too common, as Josephus testifies (cf ., e. g., that by Arche- 
laus at Passover time, Ant. XVII ix 3). 

The peculiar interest of the record is that, though St Luke gives 
no cross-reference, this incident satisfactorily explains the 
enmity of Pilate and Herod alluded to in xxiii 12, and the way 
in which that enmity was reconciled (see note on xxiii 8-12). 

2. Think ye, &c. Our Lord Himself rebuts, in the case of the 
man born blind (Jn ix 2), this popular idea that individual trouble 
in this life is proportioned to the individual s wickedness, and that 
exceptional suffering indicates exceptional ski in the sufferer. The 
Book of Job had been written centuries before with the same object. 
Here He makes it the starting-point for a prediction which was 
literally fulfilled 40 years later when the unrepentant Jews and 
Galileans, gathered for the Passover, perished by the sword of Titus. 
Josephus (B.J. V i 3) describes how they were cut down in the 

XIII 4-8] ST LUKE 189 

Temple and sprinkled the holy altar with their blood (cf . also 
ib. VI iv 6). 

4. those, eighteen. This recent example our Lord adduces Him 
self. It concerns not Galileans but Judaeans. 

offenders : lit. debtors. For sin as a debt to God cf . xi 4. 
They may have been popularly detested as serving the Roman 
Conqueror the more so if Pilate was paying their wages out of the 
Temple treasury. Josephus (B.J. II ix 4) says Pilate raised a 
tumult by spending Corban money upon aqueducts. 

5. except ye repent. Here again is a prediction literally fulfilled 
in the overthrow of the buildings of the Holy City. 

6-9. PARABLE or THE BARREN FIG-TREE (Trench, Par., pp. 348- 
360). St Luke alone records this Parable, and he omits the narrative of 
the withering of the fig-tree in Holy Week, given by Matthew (xxi 18) 
and Mark (xi 12). Has he transformed an acted parable into a 
spoken one ? Or does he preserve the original of which the cursing 
of the tree is a very early variant (cf. Streeter, Oxf. Stud., p. 206) ? 
Or are all three Synoptists correct in their chronology and the facts, 
St Luke having omitted the later incident because he had already 
given here the substance of its teaching (cf. Hawkins, Oxf. Stud., 
p. 69) ? 

Certainly the incident in Matthew and Mark becomes much 
more intelligible and significant if regarded as a deliberate sequel 
to this Parable. 

In any case, the scene will probably be near Jerusalem. Cf. 
note on xi 37-54. Trench (op. cit., p. 360, note) quotes an extra 
ordinarily close parallel to this Parable in an Arab recipe for curing 
a palm-tree of barrenness. 

6. A certain man. For the opening, cf . note on x 30. The lord 
of the vineyard is the Almighty, and the fig-tree (as in the acted 
parable of Mat xxi, Mk xi) is the Chosen People, or Jerusalem. The 
three years (sometimes interpreted of the length of our Lord s 
Ministry) probably represent the past forbearance of God, and the 
extra year the forty years interval before A. D. 70, in which He 
left space for repentance, and won over thousands of individuals, 
though the nation remained obdurate. The cutting down is the 
destruction of Jerusalem. The vine-dresser who pleads with the 
owner may be our Lord Himself, or may be simply put in to 
complete the picture. In the nation s life the individual s is writ 
large, and so this parable is directly applicable to the individual soul. 

a fig tree . . . in his vineyard. As in Tuscan vineyards olives grow 
freely, and corn, wine and oil are mingled together, so in Palestine, 
fig-trees and other trees. Perhaps a normal vineyard is described 
in xxi 29. 

7. why doth it also cumber the ground ? Besides failing to fulfil 
its purpose, it takes up room, and impoverishes the surrounding soil. 

8. let it alone. We may think of our Lord as the intercessor, like 
Abraham of old (Gen xviii 23 sqq.), winning for Jerusalem forty 
years of grace (xxiii 34). (Cf. Trench, Par., p. 353.) 

190 ST LUKE [xm 9-1 7 

9. ihou shall cut it down. Two years before the Baptist had 
seen the axe laid unto the root of the trees (iii 9) and had used 
the same word for the hewing down of the fruitless. 

(1) 10-17 Healing of the Infirm Woman (Trench, Mir., 
pp. 346-351) 

A graphic description in Edersheim, L. and T. ii, pp. 224, 225. 

This is the only instance recorded of our Lord s attendance in a 
Synagogue in the latter part of His Ministry, though earlier references 
are frequent in all Synoptists. It has been argued that growing 
hostility made His attendance difficult, and that St Luke, receiving 
this narrative without note of chronological order, has misplaced it. 
St John, however, makes Jesus protest before Annas (xviii 20) 
I ever taught in synagogues (cf. Hawkins, Oxf. Stud., p. 58). 
The tone and manner of the narrative is very characteristic of Luke 
and seem to show his editorial hand (Streeter, op. cit., p. 206). 

10 And he was teaching in one of the synagogues on the 
sabbath day. 11 And behold, a woman which had a spirit 
of infirmity eighteen years ; and she was bowed together, and 
could in no wise lift herself up. 12 And when Jesus saw her, 
he called her, and said to her, Woman, thou art loosed from 
thine infirmity. 13 And he laid his hands upon her : and 
immediately she was made straight, and glorified God. 14 And 
the ruler of the synagogue, being moved with indignation 
because Jesus had healed on the sabbath, answered and said 
to the multitude, There are six days in which men ought to 
work : in them therefore come and be healed, and not on the 
day of the sabbath. 15 But the Lord answered him, and said, 
Ye hypocrites, doth not each one of you on the sabbath loose 
his ox or his ass from the 1 stall, and lead him away to watering ? 
16 And ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, 
whom Satan had bound, lo, these eighteen years, to have been 
loosed from this bond on the day of the sabbath ? 17 And as 
he said these things, all his adversaries were put to shame : 
and all the multitude rejoiced for all the glorious things that 
were done by him. 

1 Gr. manger. 

10. he was teaching in one of the synagogues. He would only do 
so at the invitation of the elders (cf. Edersheim, L.&T.i 438, 446); 
hence the rarity of this occurrence since hostility had grown (xi 53, 54). 

Xiiiio-i 4 ] ST LUKE 191 

Perhaps permission was given in this case as a concession to the 

11. a spirit of infirmity. Perhaps curvature of the spine. The 
case reads unlike an exorcism. There is not even a rebuke to 
the spirit, as to the fever in iv 39. Hence it has been suggested that 
the spirit here is due to the Evangelist s interpretation of bound 
by Satan in v. 16. It is, however, quite in accordance with modern 
thought to attribute such a malady to malign influences and to 
effect its cure by a laying on of hands. Cf. note on Spiritual 
Healing, p. 64 sq. 

could in no wise. Rather could not altogether, entirely. 

12. he catted her. The only such case in which He is recorded 
to have taken the initiative. He must have seen the requisite faith 
and penitence in her heart. Trench suggests (p. 347) that possibly 
her presence may have been a tacit seeking of His aid. 

thou art loosed. Suggestion, followed by the completion of the 
cure by touch. Godet (ad loc.) recognizes two stages : (1) the psychic 
cure, emancipating the will ; (2) the physical, restoring, by a touch, 
the bodily organization to the control of the emancipated will. It 
is clear in the case of the man at Bethesda that the will had to be 
brought to bear. As a preliminary Jesus asks him (Jn v 6), Have 
you the will to be healed ? 

13. made straight. A verb used only three times in N.T. two 
of them by St Luke, here and in Ac xv 16. Hobart (M.L., p. 22) 
names it as a technical term. 

glorified God. This action on her part implies that she had been 
spiritually in a condition to be healed. 

14. ruler of the synagogue. The last named was Jairus (viii 41) 
and he was in Galilee. This man was probably much nearer Jeru 
salem. But the contrast of attitude typifies not only difference of 
locality, but also the growing hostility of official religion. We can 
almost see him : confused, irresolute, perplexed, and very angry, 
bustling forward and scolding the people who had done nothing, yet 
not venturing to silence the woman . . . far less to reprove the great 
Rabbi . . . but speaking at Him through those who had been the 
astounded eye-witnesses. (Edersheim, L. & T. ii 225.) 

moved with indignation : in which, no doubt, his fellow-elders 
joined. Jesus addresses them in the plural (v. 16). 

answered and said to the multitude. He answered the Lord s act 
(and the crowd s feeling), as in vii 40 Jesus had answered Simon s 
thought. But he is afraid to address our Lord, so he attacks Him 
through the multitude. 

come and be healed. An incidental attack on the innocent 
woman, who had apparently taken no overt initiative in the matter. 

not on the day]of the sabbath. This is the third instance given by 
St Luke of the accusation of sabbath-breaking ; cf . vi 1-5 and vi 6-11. 
In the first, as here, He is attacked through others. The second is a 
deliberate trap (vi 7), but they dare not attack Him openly. St John 

192 ST LUKE [Xiil 14-19 

(v) records another instance, the Bethesda miracle, where the Jews 
object to the man carrying his pallet on the Sabbath. Cf . Edersheim, 
L. & T. ii 784. 

15. Ye hypocrites. Our Lord recognizes in the pompous ruler 
the spokesman of an entire group. 

doth not each one of you, dec,. This leading of animals to water was 
expressly allowed by Talmudic Law (Edersheim, L. & T. ii 225), 
though the water might not be carried to them except by a Gentile 
under the fiction that he was doing it for himself, and not for the 
Jewish owner (op. cit., p. 785) ! If you can " loose " your cattle 
sabbath by sabbath, may not I " loose " this daughter of Abraham 
from the 18 years bondage to Satan ? 

16. ought not. The obligation lay in the opposite direction to 
that of the meticulous negatives of Rabbinic Law. 

whom Satan had bound. To contemporary Jewish thought sick 
ness was a visitation not of God but of Satan : cf . St Paul s descrip 
tion of his own infirmity in 2 Cor xii 7, and the words ascribed by 
St Luke to Peter (Ac x 38) describing our Lord as healing all that 
were oppressed of the devil. This doctrine that disease is always 
the result of evil agency finds a good deal of favour to-day, e. g. 
among those who are anxious to reform the office for Visitation of 
the Sick (cf. Hickson, The Healing of Christ in His Church). 

Trench argues (p. 347) that it can hardly have been a recognizable 
case of possession, else she would not have been allowed in the 
Synagogue. But there was a clear case in the Synagogue of Caper 
naum early in the Ministry (iv 33). 

these eighteen years. It is characteristic of St Luke (though not 
peculiar to him) to take note of such dates (cf. ii 36). 

17. as he said these things. The contrast between the discomfi 
ture of the Synagogue officials and the joyful enthusiasm of the 
crowd is in the manner of Luke the Artist, cf . Introd., p. xxviii, 
and notes on v 26, vii 16. 

(m) 18-21 Parables of the Mustard Seed and the Leaven 
(Trench, Par., pp. 107-121) 

The first of these Parables is in Mk iv 30-32, but they occur both 
together (as here) in Mat xiii 31-33, where they are attached to a 
string of other Parables of similar import. They probably represent 
a block of Q, which Luke may have preserved in its original place, 
or may have placed here as a natural sequel to the enthusiasm of 
v. 17. Among these rejoicing crowds were doubtless not a few who 
would be gathered in to swell the Church after Pentecost. Cf. 
Streeter, in Hibbert Journal, Oct. 1921, pp. 105 sqq. 

18 He said therefore, Unto what is the kingdom of God 
like ? and whereunto shall I liken it ? 19 It is like unto 
a grain of mustard seed, which a man took, and cast into his 

XIII 1 8-2 5 ] ST LUKE 193 

own garden ; and it grew, and became a tree ; and the birds 
of the heaven lodged in the branches thereof. 20 And again 
he said, Whereunto shall I liken the kingdom of God ? 21 It 
is like unto leaven, which a woman took and hid in three 
1 measures of meal, till it was all leavened. 

1 See marginal note on Mat xiii 33. 

18. Unto what is . . . like ? One of the regular Rabbinical 
formulae for introducing a comparison. (Oesterley, Sayings, 25, 
p. 46.) The phrase aptly pictures one thinking aloud. 

19. THE MUSTARD SEED describes the external growth of the 
Kingdom (as the Leaven the internal), which St Luke in his second 
volume pauses now and again to record (Ac ii 41, 47, iv 33 sqq., 
v 14, vi 7, ix 31, &c.). In this parable (though not in all) the 
Kingdom may be practically identified with the Church. In the 
next, e. g., it is rather the influence of Christianity. 

a grain of mustard seed : probably either Sinapis nigra, which 
will grow to 12 ft. or more, or Salvadora persica which, round the 
Lake of Galilee, is said to grow twice as high. 

21. THE LEAVEN. Probably the only case in N.T. in which 
leaven symbolizes a good influence. The internal growth of the 
Kingdom, permeating and transforming human society. 

which a woman took. Cf . the woman of xv 8 sqq. Charac 
teristic of the Gospel of Womanhood. As spoken by Christ, it 
may well be a reminiscence of His own boyhood. Cf. note on xi 1-8. 

three measures of meal represent a baking. Cf. Gen xviii 6 
(Sarah s breadmaking). 

(n) 22-30 Who will be saved ? 

This is one of the deeper questions habitually put by disciples 
of the Rabbinical Schools ( House of the Midrash ) to their Rabbis. 
See ref . in Hastings D.B., art. Education. For St Luke s use 
of questions as transition-points, see note on xii 41. 

22 And he went on his way through cities and villages, 
teaching, and journeying on unto Jerusalem. 23 And one 
said unto him, Lord, are they few that be saved ? And he 
said unto them, 24 Strive to enter in by the narrow door : 
for many, I say unto you, shall seek to enter in, and shall not 
be ^ble. 25 When once the master of the house is risen up, 
and hath shut to the door, and ye begin to stand without, and 
to knock at the door, saying, Lord, open to us ; and he shall 
answer and say to you, I know you not whence ye are ; 26 then 

1 Or, able, when once 
L. 13 

194 ST LUKE [XIII 22-25 

shall ye begin to say, We did eat and drink in thy presence, 
and thou didst teach in our streets ; 21 and he shall say, 
I tell you, I know not whence ye are ; depart from me, all ye 
workers of iniquity. 28 There shall be the weeping and 
gnashing of teeth, when ye shall see Abraham, and Isaac, 
and Jacob, and all the prophets, in the kingdom of God, and 
yourselves cast forth without. 29 And they shall come from 
the east and west, and from the north and south, and shall 
J sit down in the kingdom of God. 30 And behold, there are 
last which shall be first, and there are first which shall be last. 

1 Or. recline. 

Here is a break in the narrative. St Luke is not sure of the 
exact context of the next episode, and will not fabricate a connexion. 
Cf. note on ix 51 sqq., p. 41. 

22. journeying on unto Jerusalem. The more obvious meaning of 
this recurring refrain (ix 51, xvii 11, xviii 31, xix 11) is that it should 
refer to a single slow and deliberate progress toward the Holy City ; 
but we have seen reason to believe that the period embraced at 
least two visits to Jerusalem (Sept. and Dec., A. D. 28), and Luke s 
arrangement lends itself to this, though it does not follow that he 
was conscious of such visits. See notes on x 38-40 and xiii 31-35. 

23. are they few that be saved ? The question naturally follows 
from the parables of increase and expansion (vv. 19-21), but St Luke 
deliberately disconnects (see note on v. 22). Perhaps we should be 
thrown back farther still, e. g. to the Parable of the Barren Fig-tree 
(vv. 6-9) suggesting few , as the last-uttered parables suggest 
many. The questioner is not named or described. Edersheim 
(L. 6s T. ii 299) regards it as a Pharisaic question, and quotes a 
Rabbinical saying that the Kingdom of the Messiah would be, to 
that generation, like the entrance into Canaan, when only two 
Joshua and Caleb were allowed to set foot in it. 

24. Strive to enter in : strain every nerve (Plummer). The 
question is idle and speculative. Our Lord diverts the questioner 
(cf. xii 15, 42) to the serious and personal point of view. Yet, in 
a sense, He answers his query : The number, few or many, who will 
have part in the Messianic Kingdom depends on the number who 
are earnest enough about it. 

the narrow door : here a house door ; in Mat vii 13, a wicket, 
leading to a narrow path. 

many . . . shall seek to enter : e. g. those who, like the Pharisee, 
regard their own place therein as assured, and speculate only on the 
chances of others. 

25 sqq. A Parabolic utterance, introducing teaching parallel 
to that in Mat vii 22, 23. There, however, our Lord is speaking 
directly : Many will say unto me in that day . . . 

XIII 25-31] ST LUKE 195 

25. the master of the house is risen up : to close the door, when 
the guests are all assembled. This adds the idea of too late to 
the primary thought that the would-be guests are not of the right 

26. then shall ye begin to say. Their plea is more preposterous 
than that of the rejected of Mat vii 22, who could at least claim to 
have done something in His name, not merely to have been near 
Him after the flesh. It is as though one of us should be content 
to plead that he had been brought up in a Christian atmosphere. 

27. / know not whence ye are. Their disloyal negligence merits 
the fate of those who have denied Him before men (xii 9). 
Of. Mat xxv 12 (Ten Virgins). 

depart from me. As to those who have neglected works of 
mercy in Mat xxv 41 . 

ye workers of iniquity. As Mat vii 23, the whole phrase is a loose 
quotation from Ps vi 8. It shows that outward respectability and 
self-respect may be consonant with utter moral failure in the sight 
of God. 

28. This verse is reproduced with verbal variations and trans 
positions in Mat viii 11 sqq. (the story of the Healing of the 
Centurion s Servant). If both Evangelists draw it from the same 
source, it is more probably Matthew who has displaced it, though 
(apart from the Sermon on the Mount and the Charge to the Twelve) 
he rarely anticipates sayings of our Lord. The only instances noted by 
Streeter (Oxf. Stud., pp. 158 sqq.) are this, the Mustard Seed and 
associated sayings (Mat xiii 31 sqq., Lk xiii 18), and the Kingdom 
of heaven suffereth violence (Mat xi 12, Lk xvi 16). 

weeping and gnashing of teeth : impotent rage and hopeless regret. 
The phrase may have been habitual in our Lord s mouth. It occurs 
frequently in St Matthew (viii 12, xiii 42, 50, xxii 13, xxiv 51, 
xxv 30). 

Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob. Omitted or paraphrased by 
Marcion (who rejected the O.T.) but retained by the Gentile Evange 
list, who even adds to the Matthaean parallel, all the prophets. 

30. there are last which shall be first. This proverbial utterance 
also occurs twice in Matthew in neither case parallel to the text 
here and may have been a favourite expression of our Lord s. 
It is found also in a saying attributed to him in the Oxyrhynchus 
Papyri. See note on xiv 7. 

(o) 31-35 The Warning about Herod and the Answer of Jesus 

St Luke (see preliminary note on ix 51 sqq.) does not record 
our Lord s presence at the Feast of the Dedication in Jerusalem 
(Jn ix, x). But we find Him here in Herod s Jurisdiction (v. 31), 
with harrowing memories of Jerusalem in His mind (w. 34, 35) such 
as St John s account of that occasion when the Jews attempted to 
stone Him (Jn x 31) would suggest. St John says He evaded their 


196 ST LUKE [XIII 31-35 

violence (x 39) and went away beyond Jordan (x 40). In Peraea 
He would be, as St Luke places Him here, in the power of Herod. 
It looks as though His enemies had tried upon Him the trick that 
was attempted upon Nehemiah (Neh vi 10-14), to frighten Him into 
an ambush, and so entrap Him. Like Nehemiah, He scornfully 
refuses to be frightened. His time is not yet come. In a few 
months time He will re-enter Jerusalem, conscious of the death 
awaiting Him ; but now He moves up northwards, and in xvii 11 
we find Him on the frontier-line between Samaria and Galilee. 

31 In that very hour there came certain Pharisees, saying 
to him, Get thee out, and go hence : for Herod would fain 
kill thee. 32 And he said unto them, Go and say to that fox, 
Behold, I cast out 1 devils and perform cures to-day and to 
morrow, and the third day I am perfected. 33 Howbeit 
I must go on my way to-day and to-morrow and the day 
following : for it cannot be that a prophet perish out of 

1 Gr. demons. 

32. say to that fox : with, perhaps, an ironical implication of the 
fox-like cruelty and craftiness of these seeming well-wishers who 
were trying to entrap Him. (For irony, cf. notes on xi 5-8 and 
xiv 15 sqq.) He seems to class them as emissaries of the man against 
whom they pretend to warn Him. It is noticeable that early in the 
Galilean Ministry St Mark (iii 6) presents a combination of Pharisees 
and Herodians against Jesus. St Luke nowhere names the Herodians 
(but cf. note on Lk vi 7). 

to-day and to-morrow, dsc. : proverbial expression for a short 
time. Neither this nor the similar expression in v. 33 to-morrow and 
the day following can, of course, be taken literally. Irony again. 
Herod . . . and you . . . may be patient : it will not be for long. 

perfected. When He can say on the Cross It is finished. 

33. for it cannot be, &c. The irony of v. 32 is taken up here more 
grimly. Jerusalem has a monopoly as murderess of God s Prophets. 
Cf . Jer xxvi, 2 Chron xxiv 20 sqq. (the case referred to in the passage 
Mat xxiii 34-36, which precedes the similar lament over Jerusalem). 
The conjunction of this grim irony with the lament of the next verse 
has actually been alleged as involving a lack of a sense of humour in 
the Evangelist ! (J. H. Michael, Amer. Journ. Theol. xxii 105, 
Jan. 1918.) Is it not rather a testimony to his delicate sense of 
the dramatic, and of the play of human feeling ? 

34. 35. THE LAMENT OVER JERUSALEM. In Mat xxiii 37-39 we 
have an almost precisely similar utterance, in a different context, 
at the conclusion of the Day of Questions in Holy Week and before 
the great Eschatological Discourse cf. Lk xx. Either one of the 

xm 34, 351 ST LUKE 197 

Evangelists has misplaced the passage, or we have here one of the 
cases in which Jesus repeated similar words on different occasions 
(of. notes on xii 1, 1 1 , 12). It is surely probable, apriori, that His pent- 
up feelings of outraged love should vent themselves more than once : 
though the recurrence of the phrase / say unto you, Ye shall not see 
me, &c., in Lk xiii 35 and Mat xxiii 39 seems to suggest a written 
document. In any case, it is to be noted that St Luke, who tends 
to confine himself to typical examples (see Rackham, Acts, p. xlix sq.), 
gives us another and later lament over the Holy City (xix 41 sqq.), 
though it is not couched in the same words. 

34 Jerusalem, Jerusalem, which killeth the prophets, 
and stoneth them that are sent unto her ! how often would 
I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth 
her own brood under her wings, and ye would not ! 35 Behold, 
your house is left unto you desolate : and I say unto you, Ye 
shall not see me, until ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh 
in the name of the Lord. 

34. how often : so Mat xxiii 37. The significance of this phrase 
is of great importance ; for whether we put it historically where 
St Luke has it, or some months later (as St Matthew), it equally 
so corroborates the account of the fourth Evangelist. See prelimi 
nary note on ix 51 xix 27, and Introd., p. xxiv sq. 

The only alternative, short of discounting the whole passage 
(see below), is one which critics would probably vote still more 
Johannine viz. that Christ is here referring to His pre-incarnate 
dealings (as Logos) with the Chosen People. 

35. and I say unto you, <fcc. The connexion of this saying 
with the Lament is different in the parallel passage in St Matthew ; 
but in both Gospels it is a little obscure. In Mat xxiii 38 it comes 
on the Tuesday or Wednesday in Holy Week, and might involve a 
reference (see Plummer, ad loc.) to the Palm Sunday utterances of 
the pilgrims. It looks back to xxi 9. He assures them here that, 
until they can themselves take up this welcome to Him, they will 
never see Him again as their Messiah. His Mission to them as their 
Saviour is closed. If that relation to them is ever to be renewed, the 
initiative must come from them. 

Here, on the contrary, it might well stand as a prediction of the 
Palm Sunday cries (Lk xix 38). Yet it seems unlikely that our 
Lord would have appended to two separate laments the same rather 
obscure phrase in such different senses. 

One suggested explanation is that in the common source (Q) 
Matthew and Luke both found the saying of v. 35 in juxtaposition 
to what precedes, and each treated it as a conclusion of the Lament, 
whereas in reality it formed the beginning of a new section. 

198 ST LUKE [XIII 35-XIV i 

In Matthew the Lament is immediately preceded (xxiii 34-36) 
by a denunciation of Jerusalem as murderess of prophets given by 
Luke in an earlier context (xi 49-51) and introduced by the phrase 
Therefore also said the Wisdom of God (see note there). Harnack, 
following Strauss and Schmiedel, holds that our Lord is quoting 
from a lost Apocryphal book, and that St Matthew, from his own 
point of view, erased the quotation formula, but kept the quota 
tion intact (Mat xxiii 34-38), while St Luke split up the passage 
(xi 49-51, xiii 34, 35) but attached the quotation to the first part. 
Streeter (Oxf. Stud., pp. 162-163) holds that Luke is right in regarding 
the Lament as a separate utterance. 

If this be accepted, it still remains doubtful whether or no v. 35 
was originally part of the quotation : though both Evangelists 
seem to take it as an original utterance of the Lord. 

For a discussion of the whole passage see J. H. Michael, Amer. 
Journ. Theol., as above. 

(3) XIV 1 XVII 10 Third Period of the Journeyings : 
from the Lament over Jerusalem to the Pilgrimage of the 
Last Passover 

This section (if the scheme suggested in the notes on ix 51 sqq. 
and xi 1 sqq. is to be followed) will cover the period from the end 
of December, A. D. 28, to the end of February or the beginning of 
March, A.D. 29 (cf. Edersheim ii 248). This period will be then 
briefly summarized in Jn x 40-42 and its scene will be beyond 
Jordan, near the place where John at first was baptizing either 
Bethabara, where Peraea, Samaria, and Galilee meet, or some 
unknown site named Bethany (Jn i 28, R.V. and Marg.). 

The section as a whole is peculiar to St Luke. There is a trace 
of Q in v. 5. 

(a) 1-24 Earthly and Heavenly Feasts : Precedence and 
Humility (1-11), True Hospitality (12-14), Parable of the 
Great Supper (15-24) 

XIV And it came to pass, when he went into the house of 
one of the rulers of the Pharisees on a sabbath to eat bread, 
that they were watching him. 

1. into the house, &c. This is the third time (cf. vii 36 sqq. and 
xi 37 sqq.) that St Luke records our Lord s acceptance of a Pharisee s 
hospitality. He will be the guest of such, even as He invites Himself 
to the house of Zacchaeus the taxgatherer (xix 5) and begs water 
of the Samaritan woman (Jn iv 7), with the hope of entering into 
their hearts (cf. Trench, Mir., p. 352). Even at this late period of 
His ministry He would not treat the Pharisees as wholly and finally 
hardened against the truth. 

XIV i-6] ST LUKE 199 

of the rulers. Plummer notes (ad loc.) that the chief of the 
Pharisees mostly lived at Jerusalem. Is this an indication that He 
was still in the neighbourhood ? 

on a sabbath. Pursuing a definite policy, clear in this Gospel 
(cf. iv 33 sqq., vi 1 sqq., vi 6 sqq., xiii 10 sqq.), but still more 
emphasized in the fourfold record, Christ goes out of His way to 
work deeds of mercy on Sabbath days, with a view to shocking the 
Pharisees out of their false, narrow, negative Sabbatarianism. 
What this amounted to may be seen from Edersheim s selections from 
the Jerusalem Talmud (L. & T. ii 777 sqq., Append. XVII). 

2-6. THE DROPSICAL MAN (Trench, Mir., pp. 552-554). This is 
the first lesson on precedence : charity and mercy take precedence 
of Sabbath strictness. It is strange to think how violently many 
earnest Christians have taken the opposite line. There is a kind 
of Puritanism, which is of the Old Testament rather than of the New. 

2 And behold, there was before him a certain man which 
had the dropsy. 3 And Jesus answering spake unto the 
lawyers and Pharisees, saying, Is it lawful to heal on the 
sabbath, or not ? 4 But they held their peace. And he took 
him, and healed him, and let him go. 5 And he said unto 
them, Which of you shall have x an ass or an ox fallen into 
a well, and will not straightway draw him up on a sabbath 
day ? 6 And they could not answer again unto these things. 

1 Many ancient authorities read a son. See ch. xiii 15. 

2. which had the dropsy. St Luke alone of N.T. writers uses 
this word vSpuTriKos, which is the technical medical term (Hobart, 
M.L., p. 24). 

3. Is it lawful to heal . . . ? According to Rabbinical sabbath 
rules bones might not be set, nor emetics given, nor any medical or 
surgical aid, except in cases of child-birth or immediate danger to 
life (Edersheim, loc. cit., pp. 786 sqq.). 

4. But they held their peace : cf. v. 6. We may note a develop 
ment in our Lord s campaign against Sabbatarian hypocrisy. Its 
success is matched and indicated by the modification of the opposi 
tion. In the first stage they openly rebuke His disciples (vi 1), or 
show undisguised hostility to His attitude (vi 7, 11) ; in the next 
(xiii 11-17), when our Lord takes the initiative, they vent their 
remarks on the multitude ; in the third stage (here) He has 
temporarily silenced them. 

he took him : took hold of him. Here again, as in the case of 
the Infirm Woman (xiii 12), our Lord takes the initiative. He has 
seen faith in the man. 

5. an ass or an ox. The MS authority is divided between ass 
and son ; and the latter may be the true reading, quickly assimi- 

200 ST LUKE [XIV6-8 

lated to xiii 15. Deut xxii 4 had enjoined help to a neighbour s 
fallen beast. Streeter (Oxf. Stud., p. 193) is confident that this was 
in Q ; Hawkins (ib., pp. 118, 127) more doubtful. 

draw him up. This was a disputed point among the Rabbis. 
Strictly, a practising Jew might not do it, though a Gentile might 
do it for him. 

6. they could not answer. The silence of v. 3 means that they 
would not commit themselves by speech : now they are effectively 
silenced by His argument. 

(peculiar to St Luke). The guests are now taking their places at 
table, or have just taken them ; their conduct provides a moral for 
a discourse which, though not couched in the usual parabolic form, 
has all the effect of a vivid narrative : and is followed by its moral 
(v. 11), as a parable by its appropriate teaching. 

There is an interesting parallel to the thought and colour of 
this scene in one of the Sayings of Jesus unearthed among the 
Oxyrhynchus Papyri, attributed to the third century A. D. Deiss- 
mann (p. 440) translates thus : Jesus saith : A man that is bidden 
will not delay, if he is prudent, by all means to ask one of them that 
did the bidding, concerning his place at the feast, where he shall sit. 
For many that are first shall be last, and the last first, and find 
worship . . . 

7 And he spake a parable unto those which were bidden, 
when he marked how they chose out the chief seats ; saying 
unto them, 8 When thou art bidden of any man to a marriage 
feast, ^it not down in the chief seat ; lest haply a more 
honourable man than thou be bidden of him, 9 and he that 
bade thee and him shall come and say to thee, Give this man 
place ; and then thou shalt begin with shame to take the 
lowest place. 10 But when thou art bidden, go and sit down 
in the lowest place ; that when he that hath bidden thee 
cometh, he may say to thee, Friend, go up higher : then shalt 
thou have glory in the presence of all that sit at meat with 
thee. 1 1 For every one that exalteth himself shall be humbled ; 
and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted. 

1 Gr. recline not. 

7. chose out the chief seats. It is possible (see Edersheim, L. & T. 
ii 494) that the contention of the disciples at the Last Supper 
(xxii 24) was on this point. The chief seats were (Edersheim, p. 207) 
on the left and right of the host, respectively. But some further 
distinctions in grading the places seem to be referred to here. 

8. a marriage feast : to eat bread (v. 1) is the ordinary O.T. 

xiv 9-i4l ST LUKE 201 

and Rabbinical expression for an ordinary meal. The wedding-feast 
is chosen as a meal of typical formality. 

9. the lowest place. The same word (TOTTOS) used in the previous 
clause. Room, which the A.V. took from Tyndale and Coverdale, 
had the same meaning ; place was already in Wycliffe. 

10. Friend, go up higher : cf . Prov xxv 7, come up hither. 
That passage may well have been in our Lord s mind as He spoke. 

11. every one that exalteth himself, &c. A favourite maxim of 
our Lord s, which recurs as the moral of the Pharisee and Publican 
(xviii 14), and is given by St Matthew a place in one of the Holy 
Week discourses (Mat xxiii 12). The thought is frequent in O.T., 
notably in Proverbs ; cf. Prov xviii 12, xxix 23. 

12-14. TRUE HOSPITALITY : to entertain the poor and afflicted. 
This is peculiar to the third Evangelist, and characteristic of him. 
(Cf. Introd., p. xxxix.) 

12 And he said to him also that had bidden him, When 
thou makest a dinner or a supper, call not thy friends, nor 
thy brethren, nor thy kinsmen, nor rich neighbours ; lest 
haply they also bid thee again, and a recompense be made 
thee. 13 But when thou makest a feast, bid the poor, the 
maimed, the lame, the blind : 14 and thou shalt be blessed ; 
because they have not wherewith to recompense thee : for thou 
shalt be recompensed in the resurrection of the just. 

12. lest haply they also bid thee again. Godet and other commen 
tators after him discern a gentle irony here. Counter-invitation 
is suggested as a calamity, of which the inviter runs some risk. If 
the humour is (as no doubt it is) originally our Lord s, it is shared 
by the reporting Evangelist. See note on xi 15-29, and Introd., 
p. xxix. 

13. bid the poor. We may compare the saying of Jose ben 
Jochanan of Jerusalem (a pre-Christian Rabbi) : Let thy house 
be opened wide and let the needy be thy family (Oesterley, 
Sayings, i 5, p. 4). 

the maimed : avairypovs, a medical word, peculiar to St Luke in 
N.T. (Hobart, M.L., p. 148). 

14. thou shalt be blessed. Here is a fifth Beatitude to add to the 
four of vi 20-22. It is characteristic of God, the eternally Blessed, 
to give freely, without thought of return (cf . the repetition of v. 13 
in the Parable ensuing, v. 21), descending to lift up the humble ; 
not condescending to win a glow of self-congratulation. 

recompensed. The Pharisee cannot be touched with an entirely 
unselfish motive : so our Lord spiritualizes the reward, lifting it to 
a higher and more distant plane. The heavenly reward turns out 
in the end to be simply a position of higher service (xix 17). 

202 ST LUKE [XIV 14-21 

the resurrection of the just. Here, as in xx 34, our Lord speaks 
apparently, of a resurrection exclusively for those worthy of it ; 
and most of the N.T. references are to a resurrection to eternal life. 
This was the prevalent view among the Pharisees. How should 
the wicked come to life again (Beresh. R. xiii) ? Were they not 
dead even when they were alive ? Cf . also Jos. Ant. XVIII i 3. 
Among the mystical groups, however the Chasidim the hope of 
a general resurrection at the Messiah s coming was very strong (P. L.). 

Our Lord also, as reported in Jn v 29, and St Paul, in Ac xxiv 15, 
are explicit as to a resurrection both of the just and of the unjust. 

GUESTS (Trench, Par., pp. 361-372). This Parable is cited by 
McLachlan (St Luke, the Man, &c., pp. 148 sqq.) as one of the most 
conspicuous expressions of that humorous gift which could hardly 
be lacking from a nature so versatile and so sympathetic as St Luke s 
clearly was (see note on xi 5-8). He thinks (ib., p. 149) that the 
precise form of the excuses of the guests . . . must be attributed 
to the Evangelist rather than to our Lord. Certainly the irony of 
the Parable as a whole is apparent. The mention of the resurrection 
(v. 14) called forth a self-complacent remark from one of the fellow 
guests about eating bread in the kingdom of God. Christ retorts 
with a pictorial sketch of the Divine calling of Israel, to which these 
very Pharisees were so foolishly and fatally refusing their response. 

This Parable bears a strong superficial resemblance to St 
Matthew s Wedding-guests, even as St Luke s Pounds to his 
Talents ; but the differences are still greater and more funda 
mental than the resemblances and there is strong probability that 
each Evangelist is recording a genuine, independent Parable. Cf. 
Trench, p. 372 ; Hawkins, Oxf. Stud., p. 127. 

15 And when one of them that sat at meat with him heard 
these things, he said unto him, Blessed is he that shall eat 
bread in the kingdom of God. 16 But he said unto him, 
A certain man made a great supper ; and he bade many : 

17 and he sent forth his Servant at supper time to say to 
them that were bidden, Come ; for all things are now ready. 

18 And they all with one consent began to make excuse. 
The first said unto him, I have bought a field, and I must 
needs go out and see it : I pray thee have me excused. 

19 And another said, I have bought five yoke of oxen, and 
I go to prove them : I pray thee have me excused. 20 And 
another said, I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot 
come. 21 And the Servant came, and told his lord these 
things. Then the master of the house being angry said to his 

1 Gr. bondservant. 

XIV i s-i 8] ST LUKE 203 

Servant, Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the 
city, and bring in hither the poor and maimed and blind and 
lame. 22 And the Servant said, Lord, what thou didst com 
mand is done, and yet there is room. 23 And the lord said 
unto the Servant, Go out into the highways and hedges, and 
constrain them to come in, that my house may be filled. 
24 For I say unto you, that none of those men which were 
bidden shall taste of my supper. 

1 Gr. bondservant. 

15. Blessed is he that shall eat bread. A banquet is a very common 
figure, in Rabbinic writings, for the bliss of the world to come. The 
origin of the idea, says Dr Oesterley, is probably to be found in 
such passages as Zeph i 7, Isa xxv 6 : it is greatly developed in the 
Apocalyptic Literature (Sayings, &c., p. 45, note 3). The man 
separated our Lord s beatitude from the condition attached to it, 
of unselfish generosity ; obviously regarding it as a prerogative of 
the Pharisee. His utterance may have been impulsive, or deliberate. 
If the latter, it may have been simply interjected to change the 
subject, or with a more malignant motive, to entrap Christ (cf. 
they were watching him : xiv 1 and xi 53, 54). Just possibly, 
however, it may be a sympathetic approach to our Lord, echoing 
the sense of what He has just been saying. 

Our Lord takes up the metaphor of the guest s exclamation, but 
gives it an unexpected turn. 

16. A certain man. See note on x 30. Here the host is either 
God, holding the Messianic Feast in His City, or the Messiah Christ 
Himself (cf . v. 24) inviting to His own Feast. 

made a great supper : rather was about to make (imperf.) ; 
important for the understanding of the story. 

he bade many: of whom the three specified in w. 18-20 are 
typical. They are the leading citizens symbolically, the religious 
leaders of the Chosen People. 

17. he sent forth his servant. The vocator or summoner was 
sent round at the last moment to announce the completed prepara 
tions to the guests who had already received (and presumably 
accepted) the invitation. So God had invited through all the ages 
by His servants the prophets, and now summoned by John the 
Baptist and Christ Himself The Kingdom of God is at hand 
(iv 43, cf. Mk i 15) and His twelve Messengers (ix 2) and the 
Seventy (x 9). 

18. And they all . . . Not only the three cited below as examples. 
The and (not but ) adds to the irony of the situation. One 
expects an enthusiastic response. 

with one [consent]. The expression a-n-o pas has not yet been 
found elsewhere : yvw/z??s = consent is certainly the most likely 

204 ST LUKE [XIV 18-24 

word to be supplied. It is a conspiracy of studied insult to the 
Host, such as seems to have greeted our Lord from the side of 
official Judaism. Among Arab tribes, says Tristram (Eastern 
Customs, p. 82), to refuse such a second summons would be equiva 
lent to a declaration of war. 

began to make excuse. A long and tedious affair, summarized in 
these three verses. The excuses are plausible but inadequate, like 
our own habitual ones for the neglect of religion. The teaching is 
that the acceptance of the Divine invitation is not so simple a thing 
as might be supposed ; for it always involves the giving up of some 
thing else that seems reasonable and important. 

/ have bought a field. A natural eagerness (we all share it) to 
feast the eyes on newly acquired property. But the field would not 
run away : it could wait till the morrow. 

19. five yoke of oxen. He was evidently a rich man. The excuse 
has more force than the first, for the oxen, as living things, were 
subject to change and accident from day to day. But it is still 

/ go : rather I have started, am on my way to test them. 

20. / have married a wife. If this was his actual wedding-day 
the excuse is more plausible still : the Levitical Law (Deut xxiv 5) 
allowed a year s freedom from civil or military service for a newly 
married man but not immunity from social courtesy. It is not 
a case of war unless he chooses to make it so ! He should have 
thought of this when he originally accepted. 

/ cannot come. The others phrased their insults at least in the 
language of politeness. With those whom this third man typifies 
the form is as brusque and rude as the meaning. 

21. into the streets and lanes of the city. Still within the city, 
i. e. Judaism. The Divine invitation now comes through our Lord 
to the publicans and sinners, the lost sheep of the House of 
Israel, despised of the originally invited. Cf . v 30 sqq. and xv 1. 

the poor and maimed, &c. : with a reference to v. 13. God is the 
example of the true hospitality. 

22. And the servant said. Obviously after a considerable 

23. Go out, &c. Here the invitation overleaps the bounds of 
the Covenanted People. Outside the city are the Gentiles, whom 
God will invite (Ac xi 18). Though this is part of God s original inten 
tion, it has yet a definite relation to the apostasy of the Jews. Cf . 
Rom xi 12. 

constrain them. A.V. compel : a text famous for its historic 
misuse. St Augustine s unfortunate citation of it as a justification 
of State aid against the Donatists set an example of appeal to the 
secular arm which became a precedent for centuries of religious 
persecution (Aug. Ep. clxxxv 25). 

24. / say unto you. Edersheim (L. cfc T. ii 252) says these are 
words of our Lord, in explanation and application of the Parable 

XIV 24-35] ST LUKE 205 

to the company then present. If so, it is an almost unconscious 
identification of Himself with the Host of the story. For a similar 
strange break from story to direct speech, cf. the Parable of the 
Pounds (xix 25, 26). The pronoun you is emphatic, and it is 
difficult to explain it otherwise. 

none of those men which were bidden. Leaves no place for repen 
tance for the first when he has viewed his field or the second when 
he has tested his oxen. 

(b) 25-35 Counting the Cost ; Conditions of Discipleship 

vv. 26-27 appear in the Matthaean Charge to the Twelve (Mat 
x) and were therefore in Q ; vv. 28-33 were either in Q, but 
omitted by Matthew, or else added by Luke from a special source 
as appropriate here. vv. 34-35 (being in the Sermon on the Mount) 
were probably also in Q. (Cf. Streeter, Oxf. Stud., p. 194.) 

25 Now there went with him great multitudes : and he 
turned, and said unto them, 26 If any man cometh unto 
me, and hateth not his own father, and mother, and wife, 
and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own 
life also, he cannot be my disciple. 27 Whosoever doth not 
bear his own cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple. 
28 For which of you, desiring to build a tower, doth not first 
sit down and count the cost, whether he have wherewith to 
complete it ? 29 Lest haply, when he hath laid a foundation, 
and is not able to finish, all that behold begin to mock him, 

30 saying, This man began to build, and was not able to finish. 

31 Or what king, as he goeth to encounter another king in 
war, will not sit down first and take counsel whether he is 
able with ten thousand to meet him that cometh against him 
with twenty thousand ? 32 Or else, while the other is yet 
a great way off, he sendeth an ambassage, and asketh con 
ditions of peace. 33 So therefore whosoever he be of you that 
renounceth not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple. 
34 Salt therefore is good : but if even the salt have lost its 
savour, wherewith shall it be seasoned ? 35 It is fit neither 
for the land nor for the dunghill : men cast it out. He that 
hath ears to hear, let him hear. 

25. there went with him great multitudes : implying that He is 
again in motion. Perhaps towards Bethabara (cf. prelim, note on 
xiv 1) in the neighbourhood of which we find him at the next notice 

206 ST LUKE [XIV 26-35 

of journeying, xvii 11 (but see prelim, note there). The interval 
is occupied almost entirely with Parables peculiar to St Luke. 

26. hateth not his own father, &c. Cf . notes on ix 61 and xii 52. 
Our Lord s filial conduct, from boyhood (ii 51, 52) even to His dying 
moments (Jn xix 25-27), and the record (Mkvii 8-13) of His denun 
ciation of unfilial conduct give the lie at once to any literalist inter 
pretation of this saying : Did the Lord really mean that in order 
to be a Christian a man must uproot the natural affections and 
replace them by an unnatural hatred of his nearest ? Rather 
He is emphasizing the fact that there are claims and causes which 
must take precedence even over the claims of home ( J. Warschauer, 
Amer. Journ. Theol. xxiii 157, Apr. 1919). In the conflict of claims, 
Christ s is supreme, and takes precedence not only over home-love 
but even over the elemental instinct of self-preservation ( his 
own life ). 

27. Whosoever doth not bear his own cross. The second reference 
to the necessity of bearing the cross. The first and fuller call to 
the martyr spirit was given after the first Prediction of the Passion 
(see note on ix 23). 

28. which of you ? (cf. v. 31 what king ?). These short parabolic 
sayings beginning with a query are characteristic of St Luke (or his 
source, cf . Hawkins, Oxf. Stud., pp. 136, 194 ; cf . xv 4, 8. These, in 
particular, are appeals for common sense and for deliberation before 
pledging oneself to lifelong discipleship. 

to build a tower. Cf . Mat xxi 33. 

30. This man : contemptuous. Christ appeals to our sense of 
shame and of the ridiculous. Pilate is said to have begun building an 
aqueduct and to have left it incomplete for lack of means. Cf. 
xiii 4 note. 

31. what king, &c. Thought to have been suggested by the 
ill fortune of the Arabian king Aretas, who declared war on Herod 
Antipas (Jos. Ant. XVIII v 1) to avenge his daughter, supplanted 
by Herodias (cf . iii 19) ; again, it is an appeal to serious calculation 
and common sense against rashness. 

33. renounceth not all that he hath. The most Ebionite verse 
in St Luke : but if we take it as parallel with v. 26 (q.v.) we see at 
once that it is not a precept but a principle. On our Lord s teaching 
on riches and property see also note on xii 33. It is, however, 
literally true that loyalty to our Lord demands (a) a temper of 
detachment that is ready to give up all things material, if the call 
comes to do so, and (6) a recognition that all we have is a trust or 

34, 35. Salt therefore is good, &c. This saying is a popular one. 
A pithy Jewish proverb Edersheim calls it (L. <fc T. ii 305). The 
metaphor of salt suggests preservation from corruption, which is 
certainly one of the functions of Christ s disciples. St Matthew (v 13) 
introduces the saying with Ye are the salt of the earth. St Mark 
gives a later utterance of the saying apparently a little earlier 

XV i-32] ST LUKE 207 

than Luke s (Mk ix 50). The savour i. e. distinctive temper 
of a disciple is this salt, which Mark s reference helps to explain : 
Have salt in yourselves, and be at peace one with another. The 
spirit of renunciation (see last verse) is the spirit that breeds peace : 
strife is almost always engendered by the spirit of self-assertion and 
acquisitiveness . 

He that hath ears : cf . viii 8. 

(c) XV 1-32 Seeking the Lost : The Lost Sheep (3-7), the 
Lost Coin (8-10), the Lost Son (11-32) 

This chapter, which forms an artistic whole, is, in a sense, the 
central chapter of the Gospel. It conveys with unparalleled force 
and beauty the central message the favourite redemptive teaching 
of St Luke and his master St Paul. 

The three Episodes form a climax : the Pasture the House 
the Home ; the Herdsman the Housewife the Father ; the 
Sheep the Treasure the Beloved Son. Some would go farther 
and see the Blessed Trinity shadowed here : the Eternal Father 
in the third Parable ; the Son in the first (the Good Shepherd of 
Jn x) ; and the Holy Ghost (working through the Church) in the 

In the first the emphasis is on the lost ; in the second, on 
the search ; in the third on the restored. The third is differen 
tiated from the other two in that it sets forth not only God s action 
but the sinner s also. Throughout rings the characteristically Lucan 
note of joy, w. 6, 7, 9, 10, 23, 32, and the characteristically Christian 
note of a seeking love (cf. note on vi 31). 

The chapter is exclusively Lucan except for the loose parallel 
with Matthew afforded by the first Parable. Streeter observes (Ox/. 
Stud., p. 194) that the first and second Parables are a pair and 
were therefore probably both in Q, from which St Matthew will have 
omitted the second. The third, he thinks, was added by St Luke. 

XV Now all the publicans and sinners were drawing near 
unto him for to hear him. 2 And both the Pharisees and 
the scribes murmured, saying, This man receiveth sinners, 
and eateth with them. 

1-2. OCCASION OF THE TEACHING (cf. v 17 for the elaborate 
introduction). More and more the outcast classes, for whom Rabbi- 
nism had no Gospel, became attracted to Him, since the scene at 
the Call of Levi (v 29). It is to these primarily that He addresses 
these Parables of encouragement ; not, however, without a keen 
desire at the same time to enlighten the Scribes and Pharisees. See 
next note but one. 

2. the Pharisees and Scribes murmured : as later, when our Lord 

208 ST LUKE [XV 2-7 

went to lodge with Zacchaeus (xix 7), and earlier (v 30) at Levi s 

receiveth : welcomes them. It was just that which attracted 
them. The first Parable is a comment on His teaching at the first 
murmuring (v 31, 32). I am not come to call the righteous but 
sinners to repentance. It is to be noticed that our Lord, wishing 
to teach the Pharisees, starts from their own premisses, assuming 
that there are righteous persons, which need no repentance (v. 7). 
The Pharisees are the 99 sheep, the 9 coins, and most significantly 
the elder son. 

eateth with them : cf . Gal ii 12. 

3-7. THE PARABLE OP THE LOST SHEEP (Trench, Par., pp. 373- 
385) ; cf. Mat xviii 12, 13. In Matthew it has less of the form of a 
parable, and is almost certainly taken out of its Q context by the 
first Evangelist, whose homiletical tendency ... to group sayings 
according to their subjects and so according to their convenience 
for teachers Sir John Hawkins thinks much stronger than St Luke s 
chronological tendency (Oxf. Stud., p. 124). St Luke here, while 
retaining the parable in its place in Q, will have surpassed even the 
homiletical genius of St Matthew in attaching the third Parable to 
the first two. 

Edersheim (L. & T. ii 257) adduces a story from the Midrash on 
Ex iii 1, of Moses seeking a lost kid of Jethro s flock and laying it 
on his shoulder to bring it back. 

3 And he spake unto them this parable, saying, 4 What 
man of you, having a hundred sheep, and having lost one of 
them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, 
and go after that which is lost, until he find it ? 5 And when 
he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing. 
6 And when he cometh home, he calleth together his friends 
and his neighbours, saying unto them, Rejoice with me, for 
I have found my sheep which was lost. 7 I say unto you, 
that even so there shall be joy in heaven over one sinner that 
repenteth, more than over ninety and nine righteous persons, 
which need no repentance. 

4. What man of you ? It is primarily an appeal to the average 
sheep-owner. Spiritually it is impossible not to associate it with 
the Good Shepherd of Jn x. 

until he find it. The inexhaustible perseverance of the Redeemer. 

7. joy in heaven : cf . v. 10. Edersheim (L. & T. ii, p. 256) quotes 
a Pharisaic saying which brings out the contrast between their 
teaching and our Lord s. There is joy before God when those 
who provoke Him perish from the world ! 

xv 7-8] ST LUKE 209 

over one sinner. St Matthew (xviii 13) has as the moral, it is 
not willed in the presence of your heavenly Father that one of these 
little ones should perish. The difference between that and the 
exultation of this verse marks our Gospel as the Gospel of Joy 
cf. Introd., p. xxxix. 

ninety and nine righteous persons, &c. : accepting for argument the 
Pharisees premisses (see note on v. 2). 

The Shepherd has been one of the favourite images of Christ in 
Art from the earliest times (cf . Trench, Par., p. 385), though curiously 
not so in early and Renaissance Italian painting. The catacombs, 
early sarcophagi, and the fourth- and fifth-century mosaics at 
Ravenna, bear abundant witness to a feeling which has revived 
again in our own generation. Cf. Jenner, Christ in Art, pp. 7, 41. 

8-10. THE LOST COIN (Trench, Par., pp. 386-391). The Parable 
holds a middle place : the coin is one of ten, not a hundred ; it is 
mislaid in the house, not strayed far afield. As with the sheep, 
there is no responsive movement of the lost. The emphasis is on 
the search. 

8 Or what woman having ten 1 pieces of silver, if she lose 
one piece, doth not light a lamp, and sweep the house, and 
seek diligently until she find it ? 9 And when she hath found 
it, she calleth together her friends and neighbours, saying, 
Rejoice with me, for I have found the piece which I had lost. 
10 Even so, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the 
angels of God over one sinner that repenteth. 

1 Gr. drachma, a coin worth about eight pence. 

8. what woman . . . ? Here again we may have a reminiscence 
of our Lord s boyhood at Nazareth. Cf . note on xi 5-8. 

ten pieces of silver. The 8paxM (Greek equivalent to the Roman 
denarius and representing, roughly, a franc or a lira), like the = pound in xix 13, is named by St Luke alone in N.T., and 
has been mentioned as one of the physician s medical words, though 
of course it was in common currency. He was accustomed to the 
use of them, says Hobart, in his medical practice, as they were the 
common weights employed in dispensing medicines (Med. Lang., 
p. 150). The word diligently (eVi/AeAws) falls under the same 
category (ib., p. 270). 

It has been suggested that the ten drachmas had been strung 
together as a necklace or head-ornament, after oriental fashion, 
so that the loss of one would spoil the whole. 

The obvious symbolism of the Child of God, bearing (Gen i 26) 
the father s image and superscription, if it was not part of the 
original meaning of the Parable, is surely legitimate, for it only 
intensifies its central teaching. 

L. 14 

210 ST LUKE [xv 8-1 1 

if she lose one. The coin could not stray like a sheep, or a son. 
God Himself would not mislay a soul. It is therefore more appro 
priate to identify the woman with the Church. 

light a lamp. The illumination of Divine Grace. 

sweep the house, and seek diligently. Here the active ministrations 
of grace come in. The spiritual counterpart is a Parochial Mission. 

9. her friends and neighbours : the company of heaven. 

10. joy in the presence of the angels. So St Paul (Eph iii 10) 
speaks of the Church revealing to the heavenly hosts the manifold 
wisdom of God. In the presence, i. e. the joy of God Himself 
(cf. in heaven, v. 7) witnessed and shared by the Angels. 

Christian Art seems, in general, to have neglected this picture, 
though Millais, in the last century, produced a striking representa 
tion of the Woman. 

11-32. THE LOST SON ( PRODIGAL SON ). Trench, Par., 
pp. 392-428. This shares with another Lucan Parable (The Good 
Samaritan, x 30 sqq.) the honour of the highest place in the affections 
of Christendom. It wonderfully concentrates the whole drama of 
Redemption ; containing within itself, as Archbishop Trench 
observes (p. 392), such a circle of blessed truths as to justify the 
title Evangelium in evangelio which it has sometimes borne. 

The Parables, as Mrs Jameson notices, were hardly touched in 
the best period of Christian Art perhaps lest the simple should 
mistake them for historical fact. We owe their representation to 
the Reformers of the sixteenth century and the Jesuits of the 
seventeenth (Hist, of O.L., vol. i, pp. 375-378). The Prodigal Son 
is something of an exception. Mrs Jameson (op. cit., pp. 382-387) 
gives a woodcut of a fourteenth- century miniature of this subject, 
and names pictures by Bassano, Annibale Caracci, Guercino, 
Murillo, Albrecht Durer, Salvator Rosa, and Rubens. Rembrandt 
also painted it in a picture now (or lately) at Petrograd, and there 
is a moving representation by Battoni at Vienna. G. F. Watts s 
picture is well known. 

11 And he said, A certain man had two sons : 12 and the 
younger of them said to his father, Father, give me the portion 
of l thy substance that falleth to me. And he divided unto 
them his living. 13 And not many days after the younger 
son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far 
country ; and there he wasted his substance with riotous 
living. 14 And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty 
famine in that country ; and he began to be in want. 15 And 
he went and joined himself to one of the citizens of that 
country ; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine. 16 And 

1 Gr. the. 

xvii-i 4 ] ST LUKE 211 

he would fain have been filled with Hhe husks that the swine 
did eat : and no man gave unto him. 17 But when he came 
to himself he said, How many hired servants of my father s 
have bread enough and to spare, and I perish here with hunger ! 

18 I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, 
Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight : 

19 I am no more worthy to be called thy son : make me as 
one of thy hired servants. 20 And he arose, and came to 
his father. But while he was yet afar off, his father saw him 
and was moved with compassion, and ran, and fell on his 
neck, and 2 kissed him. 21 And the son said unto him, Father, 
I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight : I am no more 
worthy to be called thy son 3 . 22 But the father said to his 
4 servants, Bring forth quickly the best robe, and put it on 
him ; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet : 
23 and bring the fatted calf, and kill it, and let us eat, and 
make merry : 24 for this my son was dead, and is alive again ; 
he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry. 

1 Gr. t he pods of the carob tree. - Gr. kissed him much. 

3 Some ancient authorities add make me, as one of tliy hired servants. See ver. 19. 

4 Gr. bondservants. 

11. two sons. These typify the younger, the sinner (despised 
publicans, &c.) ; the elder, the righteous (respectable Pharisees). 

12. that falleth to me. Edersheim (L. & T. ii 258-260) shows 
that by the law of inheritance the younger son would have one-third 
of the movable property, the elder two-thirds (the double portion ). 

The father could not have disinherited even a younger son at 
his own death ; but he could have replied to the son s unreasonable 
request by disposing otherwise of the property while yet alive, 
instead of which (it would seem) he takes the hint, and abdicates 
in favour of his children. 

This very human parable here depicts the impatience of home 
restraints and the optimistic ambition of youth. 

13. gathered all together. Cutting himself off completely from 
the home. Very quickly was he to scatter all that he had gathered. 

a far country. Away from the presence of the father and the 
wholesome restraints of home-life. 

with riotous living. No details are given such as the elder son 
supplies (v. 30). 

14. a mighty famine. It was Providence, by circumstances 
outside his own control and responsibility, that brought home to 
him the folly of his recklessness. 


212 ST LUKE [XV 15-21 

15. he went and joined himself to one of the citizens of that 
country. Vain effort of the soul to recover its equilibrium apart from 
God. There is probably no reference to the publicans taking service 
under the Romans. Edersheim sees in the verb the idea of the 
wastrel clinging to a reluctant patron. Certainly he had made 
no true friends by his lavish expenditure (v. 16, no man gave 
unto him ). 

to feed swine. To a Jew, the last point of degradation, involving 
a curse. Edersheim, L. & T. ii 260. 

16. he would fain have been filled : the simpler phrase (xopra- 
a-Orivai) is probably the true reading not the coarser one of A.V. 

with the husks. Rather, as R.V. marg., the pods of the carob 
tree. Edersheim (loc. cit., p. 261) aptly quotes a Jewish saying : 
When Israel is reduced to the carob tree, they become repentant. 

17. when he came to himself. The same phrase is used of 
St Peter after his midnight release from prison (Ac xii 11). Here 
it implies that reckless sin is a dementia. Hunger and desperation 
bring the thought of home and the longing for it and that brings 
him to his senses. Repentance is a return not to God only, but 
also to one s true self. 

hired servants. The mention of these, as of the robe, the ring, 
and the fatted calf (v. 22), suggests a wealthy and luxurious home. 

and I perish here with hunger. Not resentment, but a recognition 
of his own folly. 

18. / will arise, &c. This has become for us the classic 
utterance of repentance : partly because of its use in the introduction 
to Morning and Evening Prayer. 

19. / am no more worthy. In this utterance (or rather spoken 
thought) he proves himself ready to receive Divine grace and 
capable of receiving it. 

make me as one of thy hired servants. He is ashamed to claim 
his sonship : but when he realizes the father s love (v. 21) he omits 
this clause or is it the father who interposes and gives him no 
chance of voicing it ? 

20. he arose. His penitence advanced from thought to act. 
while he was yet afar off : implies a constant looking out on the 

father s part. He never really lost sight of his son, though the 
son put the father out of his mind. 

was moved . . . and ran. The movement of God s grace and 
mercy towards the penitent sinner. The All-merciful meets us 

fell on his neck, and kissed him. Ka.Te<t>i\r)crev, covered him 
with kisses, as the penitent woman had done to Jesus (vii 38). In 
Ac xx 37 the whole phrase is repeated word for word in the moving 
scene where the Ephesian elders say farewell to St Paul. 

This embrace, be it noted, comes before the son has spoken a word. 

21. MS authority is divided as to the addition of the phrase 
make me as one of thy hired servants. The probability is therefore 

XV 2i-2 5 ] ST LUKE 213 

that it was added to match v. 19 (which see) and is no part of the 
original text. 

22. said to his servants. He is anxious to rehabilitate the 
returned prodigal before the entire household. 

the best robe . . . ring . . . shoes. The father loads him at once 
with honour and dignity. The most stately ceremonial robe the 
family possesses, a signet ring (symbol of authority) for his finger, 
and sandals to mark him off from the bare-footed bondservants. 
All of these are luxuries. And to crown all, the servants are to put 
on the robe, thereby owning his mastership (Edersheim). 

23. the fatted calf. The calf the fatted one : apparently 
specially fatted against his hoped-for return. 

24. this my son. He claims him as son : confesses him 
before the servants even as Christ will confess His loyal ones before 
the angels in heaven (xii 8). The son had claimed him for father 
(v. 21). 

was dead, and is alive again ; he was lost, and is found. A Hebraistic 
tautological parallelism. In his joy the father bursts into poetry, 
as Mary in her Magnificat, Zacharias in Benedictus, and Simeon in 
Nunc Dimittis. It is pure joy and relief no hint of reproach to 
his son before the servants. In our own interpretation, however, 
we can see as the insight of penitent love would have enabled 
the prodigal to see the underlying sense of a moral and spiritual 
death and resurrection. 

Here, at the end of the first part of the Parable, we have the 
completed story of a sinner s repentance and restoration to the 
full life of grace. 

25-32. THE ELDER SON. This second half of the Parable deals 
not with Publicans and Sinners, but with the self-styled Righte 
ous. The attitude of the elder son typifies exactly that of the 
Pharisaism with which our Lord found himself at issue : (1) self- 
satisfied consciousness of merit, and belief that Divine grace is the 
reward thereof, (2) entire lack of sympathy with the outcast, 
developing into malignant jealousy ; 

25 Now his elder son was in the field : and as he came and 
drew nigh to the house, he heard music and dancing. 26 And 
he called to him one of the servants, and inquired what these 
things might be. 27 And he said unto him, Thy brother is 
come ; and thy father hath killed the fatted calf, because he 
hath received him safe and sound. 28 But he was angry, and 
would not go in : and his father came out, and intreated him. 
29 But he answered and said to his father, Lo, these many 
years do I serve thee, and I never transgressed a command 
ment of thine : and yet thou never gavest me a kid, that 

214 ST LUKE [XV 25-31 

I might make merry with my friends : 30 but when this thy 
son came, which hath devoured thy living with harlots, thou 
killedst for him the fatted calf. 31 And he said unto him, 
1 Son, thou art ever with me, and all that is mine is thine. 
32 But it was meet to make merry and be glad : for this thy 
brother was dead, and is alive again ; and was lost, and is 

1 Gr. Child. 

25. was in the field. Returned home from work, tired and irri 
table, and was offended at not having been consulted. 

26. called . . . one of the servants. He is already sulky and sus 
picious, and will not commit himself by addressing his father. 

28. he was angry : even as Jonah the personification of Israel s 
perennial failure in generosity is angry at God s compassion shown 
to the Ninevites. 

came out, and intreated him. The father (cf. v. 31) is tender and 
considerate to both sons, to the elder as to the younger. 

29. / serve thee : lit. I slave for thee. His true spirit is here 
displayed. It is a calculating and mercenary spirit, not really filial. 

/ never transgressed. Self -righteousness, typical of the Pharisee. 
Cf . xviii 9. 

thou never gavest me a kid. A grievance perhaps cherished, but 
unuttered, for many years. The picture is not a caricature, but a 
portrait. We can see the elder son s point of view, and it is a very 
human one. 

my friends, in an oriental house, may mean that he had become 
alienated, having friends of his own who were not his father s 

30. this thy son. He contemptuously declines to call him my 
brother. His father gently reminds him of the relationship in v. 32. 

31. Son : or my child (reVvov), more affectionate than the 

mos of V. 30. 

all that is mine. According to one interpretation (see note on v. 12) 
the father had actually given over the two-thirds to the elder son 
when he gave one-third to the younger. The elder son Jew-like 
had not realized his privileges, though always ready to contest them 
with others. 

It is noticeable that the effect of the father s remonstrance on 
the elder son is not recorded. Perhaps the Parable breaks off where 
it does because it lies with the listening Pharisees to determine what 
that effect shall be. For all this none can read the Parable without 
an ominous presentiment that the elder brother does refuse to the 
end to go in (Trench, p. 426). 

xvi 1-9] ST LUKE 215 

(d) XVI 1-18 The Unrighteous Steward ; Pharisaic Scoffers 


The chain of Parables continues to xvii 10, with short interludes 
of direct discourse (xvi 14-18, xvii 1-6). The matter is still almost 
entirely peculiar to St Luke. 

pp. 429-454). Sir John Hawkins (Oxf. Stud., p. 134) thinks that 
this Parable may have been in Q, but deliberately omitted by 
St Matthew as liable to misinterpretation. 

It is one of the distinctively Lucan passages concerned with the 
right use of wealth. Cf. the following Parable (xvi 19-31) and 
xviii 18-30. Edersheim (L. & T. ii 264 sqq.) shows how this and 
the following Parables up to xviii 14 are linked together by the 
thought of Righteousness unrighteous, self-righteous, &c. but 
more especially he links this and the next one (Dives and Lazarus) : 
the first and the second are linked by the intermediate verses 16-18 
(see below). 

XVI And he said also unto the disciples, There was a 
certain rich man, which had a steward ; and the same was 
accused unto him that he was wasting his goods. 2 And he 
called him, and said unto him, What is this that I hear of thee ? 
render the account of thy stewardship ; for thou canst be no 
longer steward. 3 And the steward said within himself, 
What shall I do, seeing that my lord taketh away the steward 
ship from me ? I have not strength to dig ; to beg I am 
ashamed. 4 I am resolved what to do, that, when I am put 
out of the stewardship, they may receive me into their houses. 
5 And calling to him each one of his lord s debtors, he said to 
the first, How much owest thou unto my lord ? 6 And he 
said, A hundred Measures of oil. And he said unto him, 
Take thy 2 bond, and sit down quickly and write fifty. 7 Then 
said he to another, And how much owest thou ? And he 
said, A hundred 3 measures of wheat. He saith unto him, 
Take thy 2 bond, and write fourscore. 8 And his lord com 
mended 4 the unrighteous steward because he had done wisely : 
for the sons of this Sworld are for their own generation wiser 
than the sons of the light. 9 And I say unto you, Make to 

1 Gr. baths, the bath being a Hebrew measure. See Ezek xlv 10, 11, 14. 

2 Gr. writings. 

3 Gr. cors, the cor being a Hebrew measure. See Ezek xlv 14. 

4 Gr. the steward of unrighteousness. 5 Or, age. 

216 ST LUKE [XVI i -8 

yourselves friends 1 by means of the mammon of unrighteous 
ness ; that, when it shall fail, they may receive you into the 
eternal tabernacles. 10 He that is faithful in a very little is 
faithful also in much : and he that is unrighteous in a very 
little is unrighteous also in much. 11 If therefore ye have not 
been faithful in the unrighteous mammon, who will commit to 
your trust the true riches ? 12 And if ye have not been 
faithful in that which is another s, who will give you that 
which is 2 your own ? 13 No 3 servant can serve two masters : 
for either he will hate the one, and love the other ; or else he 
will hold to one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God 
and mammon. 

1 Gr. out of. * Some ancient authorities read our own. 

3 Gr. household-servant. 

1. steward. An estate agent of a large (rich man s) property : 
liable to dismissal (v. 2), therefore not a slave like the house-steward 
or major-domo of xii 42-46. 

2. thou canst be no longer steward. The dismissal is absolute : 
it does not depend upon the character of the account rendered. 

5. calling . . . each one. This action of remitting part of the 
debts, as Edersheim points out (L. & T. ii 267), was still technically 
within his rights as his lord s administrator till the dismissal had 
actually taken effect. It was unrighteous, but it was not legally 
ultra vires. He makes effective friends of them by implicating 
them in this doubtful proceeding. 

Vitringa, as quoted by Trench (p. 436) sees here a picture of the 
leaders of the Jews, who, though they had forfeited their stewardship 
of the Divine Law, were making friends of the people by lowering 
the moral standard, with their doctrine of Corban and Divorce. 
Cf. v. 17. 

6. A hundred measures of oil. fidros = Heb. Bath = 8 to 9 
gallons. Edersheim (p. 269) calculates that the remittance would 
amount to about 5, with a purchasing power of 25. 

Take thy bond : probably a wax tablet, in which the erasure and 
alteration would be comparatively easily affected (Edersheim, 
p. 270). 

7. A hundred measures of wheat. Kopo? = Heb. Cor = about 
10 bushels : the remittance calculated at 20 to 25, with purchasing 
power of 100 to 125. These two are only examples. He summoned 
each one of his lord s debtors and dealt with them in the same way. 

8. he had done wisely. The typical character of this wisdom lies 
in the fact that, as long as he still had control of his master s posses 
sions he did not make use of these in order to secure himself a few 
more days of enjoyment, but to secure his future (B. Weiss, ad loc.). 

xvi 9-H] ST LUKE 217 

9. the mammon. Mamon (the right spelling) is used in 
Rabbinical literature in the general sense of possessions, whether 
of money, cattle, or other property (Oesterley, Sayings, p. 25 n.). 
It is the abuse of wealth, so habitual (cf . 1 Tim vi 10), that has won 
it the predicate unrighteous. 

when it shall fail : not when ye fail as A.V. The word 
exXetTreii/, peculiar to St Luke, who uses it here and in xxiii 44, is 
a medical one (Hobart, p. 120 sq.). 

they may receive you, i.e. (probably) that God may receive you : 
cf. xii 20, 48. This periphrasis, common to the Rabbis of our Lord s 
time and to simple folk of George Eliot s novels, is a frequent one 
in Rabbinical literature. Rabbi Jochanan . . . said : " Whosoever 
profanes the Name of God in secret, they punish him openly." 
(Oesterley, Sayings, rv 5, p. 49.) Others take the plural to refer 
to the friends : each deed done for God, in which wealth, 
opportunity, capacity, &c., which are so habitually used for " un 
righteousness " [see note on mammon above] would become a friend 
to greet us as we enter the eternal world (Edersheim, L. & T. ii, 
p. 274). 

10. He that is faithful, &c. Complementary to the main thought 
of the Parable : we pass from prudence to trustworthiness. Eder 
sheim (p. 274) quotes the Midrash on Moses and David : The 
Holy One, blessed be His Name, does not give great things to a 
man until he has been tried in a small matter. 

11. the unrighteous mammon . . . the true riches, i. e. material 
means, and spiritual status, or opportunity. Earth, even on 
its most material side, is a school for heaven : we develop our moral 
and spiritual faculties by the way we use our wealth. 

12. that which is another s. Earthly wealth is not our own, in 
the sense in which our spiritual possessions are or will be in the 
shape they will assume in heaven. 

13. No servant (lit. house-servant ) can be at the absolute 
disposal (8ov\veiv) of two masters at the same time (cf . Plummer, 
ad loc.). 

Ye cannot serve God and mammon. The ordinary distinction 
between the Sacred and the Secular, if adopted as a practical guide 
to conduct, is not only disastrous, but ultimately self -contradictory. 
God must have all, or He has none. It is possible to live for this 
world. It is possible to live for God. To do both at once is not merely 
undesirable but impossible. 

This phrase occurs in Matthew s Sermon on the Mount (vi 24) 
and was doubtless in Q. How many of the neighbouring verses 
may also have been in Q is difficult to determine. Cf. Oxf. Stud., 
pp. 113, 164, 201. 

two Parables : see Edersheim, L. & T. ii 276. He considers them 
not detached sayings (as, e. g., Streeter takes them to be, Oxf. 
Stud., p. 201), but brief notes of a discourse made by one who heard 

218 ST LUKE [XVI 14-16 

it, and handed it to St Luke years later. If we may take it as a single 
discourse it leads up to a Parable which, addressed to lovers of 
money, depicts with terrible vividness the attitude of those who 
sneered at the Publicans, from the point of view of eternity. Our 
Lord is anxious, if possible, not only to convict , but to convince ; 
so He denounces their pleas one by one. (a) Their aloof self- 
righteousness (v. 15), with its claim to admiration an abomina 
tion before God. (6) The pretensions they based (v. 16) on being 
the custodians of the Law and the Prophets, while they flout the 
fundamental principles of the Law, e. g. in the scandalous facilities 
for divorce, (c) In the Parable that follows, their attitude towards 
wealth, which, regarded as a merited reward for their righteousness, 
is fraught, for them, with no responsibilities or dangers. 

14 And the Pharisees, who were lovers of money, heard 
all these things ; and they scoffed at him. 15 And he said unto 
them, Ye are they that justify yourselves in the sight of men ; 
but God knoweth your hearts : for that which is exalted 
among men is an abomination in the sight of God. 16 The 
law and the prophets were until John : from that time the 
gospel of the kingdom of God is preached, and every man 
entereth violently into it. 17 But it is easier for heaven and 
earth to pass away, than for one tittle of the law to fall. 
18 Every one that putteth away his wife, and marrieth 
another, committeth adultery : and he that marrieth one that 
is put away from a husband committeth adultery. 

14. scoffed : lit. turned up their noses. Their attitude is one 
of vulgar insult, and brings down on them language of strong 

15. justify yourselves in the sight of men. The teaching is like 
that of Jn v 44. The whole outlook of these righteous people is 
that of human esteem. Christ appeals to conscience against the 
pretences by which they attract such esteem. 

an abomination. Pride and pretension, to use the O.T. phrase, 
stink in His nostrils. That is the root-meaning of the word 

16. The law and the prophets were until John. St Matthew places 
this utterance earlier, in a passage about John the Baptist. If 
St Luke had found it there in Q he would hardly have detached it 
from so appropriate a context : therefore we may take it that this 
represents, more or less, its original position. Cf. Hawkins, Oxf. 
Stud., pp. 156, 159. 

The converted Pharisee St Paul, in Rom iii 2, felicitates the Jews 
on being entrusted with the Oracles of God. The Pharisees and 
Scribes self-constituted guardians of the Law and the Prophets 

xvii6-i 9 ] ST LUKE 219 

did not fail to felicitate themselves. Perhaps we may take Law 
and Prophets as denoting O.T. dispensation, and paraphrase thus : 
The Dispensation with which you so arrogantly identify yourselves 
ended with the Mission of the Baptist, though its moral principles 
which you (v. 18) so openly, flout are abiding (v. 17). 

every man entereth violently ... St Matthew has (xi 12) from 
the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth 
violence. The interpretation is difficult. Does it refer to the 
unconventional eagerness of outcasts (cf. xv 1) taking the kingdom 
by storm , with the suggestion to Pharisees, It is first come, first 
served : you must be quick with your repentance if you are to 
secure a place ? Cf . Dante s Regnum celorum violenza pate 
(Par. xx 94, of which the context is quoted above on xi 5-8). Or 
does it refer to those spiritual housebreakers who scorn to enter 
the fold by the gate of humility (cf. Jn x 1) and, like His Pharisaic 
hearers, claim the privileges of the Kingdom on their own terms ? 

17. one tittle of the law. The little horn by which one Hebrew 
letter was distinguished from another, 3 from 3, and 1 from i. 

18. Every one that putteth away. Divorce was a common question 
of the Rabbinic schools. The School of Hillel was lax, allowing even 
deafness, bad cooking, or the husband s preference for another 
woman as grounds of divorce ; that of Shammai as strict as our 
Lord s teaching represented here. St Luke s language is quite 
unqualified in condemnation of divorce : how far it has to be 
qualified by the limitations in St Matthew v 32 and xix 3-9 does 
not fall within the scope of this commentary. 

The teaching of the indissolubility of marriage is unqualified 
also in St Mark, and has set the tone to the Church s policy about 
marriage and divorce. For an interesting discussion of the whole 
subject, see Report of 1920 Lambeth Conference, No. VI (pp. 107 sqq.). 
In Resolution 67 (p. 44) the Conference takes the stricter (Lucan 
and Marcan) line as the standard, yet admits the right of a national 
or regional Church to deal with cases which fall within the exception 
mentioned in the record of our Lord s words in St Matthew s Gospel, 
under provisions which such Church may lay down. 

(e) XVI 19 XVII 4 Dives and Lazarus (xvi 19-31) ; Re 
sponsibility for Others (xvii 1-4) 

Par., pp. 455-483). The primary lesson of this Parable is not that 
to be wealthy is wicked, but that, while the inequalities of this life 
will be rectified in another (v. 25), the use of wealth for mere self- 
gratification, without any conscience for social responsibility 
( am I my brother s keeper ? ) brings with it ultimately its own 
condemnation. It is this note of social responsibility, the reverse 
of which displayed itself in the attitude of the Pharisee (xviii 9), 
which naturally leads up to the section on offences (xvii 1-4). 

220 ST LUKE [XVI 19-31 

The Parable also seems to disclose to us great principles with 
regard to the life after death. But its imagery seems intentionally 
adapted to appeal to contemporary Pharisaism, and how far we 
may be justified in pressing the details of its figurative language 
may be questioned. At any rate, it implies a conscious existence 
hereafter, as does more clearly still the Word from the Cross 
recorded in Lk xxiii 43. Hobart (Med. Lang., p. 31) observes how the 
language of this Parable abounds in medical terms which St Luke, 
alone of N.T. writers, employs. Such are : full of sores, his sores, 
cool my tongue, / am in anguish. 

The Parable falls naturally into three parts : (1) This Life 
(w. 19-21) ; (2) After Death (22-26) ; (3) Application (27-31). 

19 Now there was a certain rich man, and he was clothed 
in purple and fine linen, faring sumptuously every day* : 20 and 
a certain beggar named Lazarus was laid at his gate, full of 
sores, 21 and desiring to be fed with the crumbs that fell from 
the rich man s table ; yea, even the dogs came and licked his 
sores. 22 And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and 
that he was carried away by the angels into Abraham s 
bosom : and the rich man also died, and was buried. 23 And 
in Hades he lifted up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth 
Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. 24 And he 
cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send 
Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and 
cool my tongue ; for I am in anguish in this flame. 25 But 
Abraham said, 2 Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime 
receivedst thy good things, and Lazarus in like manner evil 
things : but now here he is comforted, and thou art in anguish. 
And 3 beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf 
fixed, that they which would pass from hence to you may not 
be able, and that none may cross over from thence to us. 
27 And he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou 
wouldest send him to my father s house ; 28 for I have five 
brethren ; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come 
into this place of torment. 29 But Abraham saith, They 
have Moses and the prophets ; let them hear them. 30 And 
he said, Nay, father Abraham : but if one go to them from the 
dead, they will repent. 31 And he said unto him, If they 

1 Or, living in mirth and splendour every day 

2 Gr. Child. 3 Or, in all these things 

ST LUKE 221 

hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, 
if one rise from the dead. 

19. there was a certain rich man. In this Parable, with its rich 
colour and its striking contrasts rich and poor this world and 
the next Luke is consummately a painter. Yet the story has not 
inspired Christian Art as others have. Art has not fastened upon 
the scenes in the World beyond. Bonifazio Veronese the elder has, 
however (in the Venetian Academy), a characteristically Venetian 
representation of a supplicating Lazarus in sight of the Rich Man s 
table ; and Jacopo Bassano has also depicted the scene. See 
Jameson, Hist, of O.L., vol. ii, p. 375. 

clothed in purple and fine linen. Tyrian murex-dyed wool very 
costly material for his outer robe, and for the inner tunic, byssus 
white linen or cotton from Egypt or India (the former the more 
expensive). Such was used for the white garments of the High 
Priest on the Day of Atonement, Egyptian for the morning, costing 
36, Indian for the afternoon, costing 24 (Edersheim, L. & T. 
ii 278). The virtuous woman of Proverbs (xxxi 22) is clothed in 
fine linen and purple. 

faring sumptuously. Conviviality and splendour mark his daily 
life : but there is no welcome of the maimed, the lame, and the 
blind such as is inculcated in xiv 13, nor would a returned prodigal 
(xv 32) be the subject or occasion of such merriment. 

This style of living is so unlike that of the traditional Pharisees 
of Jos. Ant. XVIII i 3, that some have considered it inappropriate 
here (Trench, Par., p. 456). But Dante (Inf. vii 58 and Purg. xxii 
49-51) rightly sees how closely akin are the avaricious and the 
spendthrift ill getting and ill spending : 
mal dare e mal tener. 

Nor is it clear that the high-placed Pharisees whose meals St Luke 
so often records were universally oblivious of the pleasures of the 

20. a certain beggar named Lazarus (Syr-Sin. poor man ). 
The rich man in the Parable is not named (the convenient Dives 
is just the Latin for rich ). The beggar is, and it is the only 
instance in which our Lord gives a name to one of His characters. 
The name itself (which was that of the brother of Mary and Martha 
Jn xi 1 with whom (cf. on v. 31) many attempts have been made 
to identify this character) is a corruption of Eleazar, and is significant 
of the role he plays. God help him ! He typifies the pious poor 
the Chasidim so frequently mentioned in O.T. and especially 
in the Psalms. 

was laid. A chronic invalid, cast there by some who had not 
the patience to carry him farther, in the hope that the rich man 
would help him. 

21. desiring to be fed. We are not told that even this elementary 
desire was satisfied. 

222 ST LUKE [XVI 22-26 

the dogs came : scavengers abounding in oriental streets. This 
touch would give a different impression to the original audience 
from that which it suggests to us Western dog-lovers. Lazarus was 
helpless, and so could not avoid what to him was a defiling touch. 
Cf. the feeling of horror voiced in Ps xxii 16, many dogs have come 
about me. Yet the phrase perhaps implies that the brutes adopted 
the outcast human. The dogs (who like him live on the offal) 
treat him as one of their own kind (B. Weiss, ad loc.). 

22-26. Here the scene suddenly changes and the second part 
of the Parable begins. 

22. carried away by the angels into Abraham s bosom. He uses this 
image of reclining at a feast probably because it would appeal to 
the Pharisaic conceptions of the blessed state, though the Rabbinical 
descriptions more like those of sensuous Islam lack the dignity 
and restraint of our Lord s picture. Abraham s Bosom actually 
occurs in some extant Jewish writings (Edersh. L. & T. ii 280). 

23. in Hades : the place of departed spirits (not Gehenna), 
answering here rather to the Purgatory of mediaeval theology than 
to Hell. Lazarus in bliss and Dives in torment are in sight of one 
another, though with a great chasm separating them (vv. 23, 26). 
The teaching of the imagery must not be pressed, but it seems at 
least to imply (a) that the soul s destiny for good or ill is fixed in 
this life, and (b) that there is consciousness and memory beyond 
the grave. 

24. Father Abraham. He is a typical Pharisee in Hades ; he 
claims Abraham as his father (cf. v. 28 and Jn viii 53) though he 
finds himself on the wrong side of the chasm ; and he looks for 
signs (v. 30). Cf. xi 16. 

send Lazarus. Variously interpreted as the acme of pride (he 
regards Lazarus as still entirely at his disposal !), or (more probably) 
as a token of the genuine humility induced by a realization of the 

that he may . . . cool my tongue : the unquenchable and never- 
to-be-satisfied thirst for the good things he had enjoyed on earth 
(B. Weiss, ad loc.). Dante pictures this most vividly in the cry of 
Maestro Adamo in Inf. xxx 62, 63 : Alive, I had abundance of all 
that I wanted, and now, miserable ! I crave a drop of water ! 

Io ebbi vivo assai di quel ch i volli 

Ed ora, lasso ! un goccio d acqua bramo. 

25, 26. Abraham said. More has been built upon this utterance 
than was justified, because we have no certainty (a) how far Jesus 
Himself speaks directly through the mouth of Abraham ; (b) 
how much of the Parable is imagery and how much genuine other- 
world topography. The principles enunciated as far as the Parable 
is concerned are clear, however. (1) Man s use of this life fixes 
irrevocably his lot there on one or other side of an impassable 
chasm ; (2) that lot involves a redressing of the balance as 
regards the inequalities of earthly life. 

XVI 27-xvil 4 ] ST LUKE 223 

27-31. This section, although it carries on the story, forms 
really a sequel. Incidentally it shows (Edersheim, L. <Ss T. ii 282) 
how the Law and the Prophets cannot fail (cf. v. 17), and how 
we must press into the kingdom (v. 16). 

27. / pray thee therefore , father. There is a note of human feeling in 
this request just as there is in Abraham s child, remember . . . (v. 25) 
which is lacking in the ordinary Pharisaic conception of the relations 
between Heaven and Hell. One cannot but compare Dante s 
outbursts of admiration (Farinata, Inf. x), sympathy (Francesca, 
Inf. v), and even affection (Brunetto, Inf. xv) for those whom he 
meets among the doomed ; and again the eagerness of the souls in 
Purgatory that when he returns to earth he will make their condition 
known to their kinsfolk (Purg. iii 114, v 85 sqq., 130 sqq., &c.). 

28. for I have five brethren. Dives here shows a self-forgetfulness 
(though its scope be confined, in a characteristically Jewish way, to 
the circle of his own family) which sheds new light on his character, 
and shows what he might have become. 

31. // they hear not Moses and the prophets. This is the real 
purpose of this last section of the Parable to teach that if existing 
opportunities are not used, there is no alternative. Cf. Jn v 47, 
If ye believe not his writings, how shall ye believe my words ? 

if one rise from the dead. There is an extraordinary corroboration 
of this teaching in Jn xi, where a dead man of the name of Lazarus 
is actually raised from the dead, and the Pharisees, so far from being 
convinced, plot to put him to death again (Jn xii 10, 11). 

If, as Edersheim thinks, the Raising of Lazarus took place after 
the Discourses of Lk xvii 1-10, the identity of the names must be 
simply a coincidence. If, on the other hand, this group of Parables 
could be placed shortly after the raising of Lazarus, the irony 
would seem almost too bold. 

connexion of the next ten verses with the context, and of the four 
sayings embodied in them with one another, is very obscure, and it 
has been suggested that the reason for their juxtaposition is that 
Luke found them, or some of them, together in his source, Q. (Cf. 
Sir John Hawkins, Oxf. Stud., p. 124.) Of vv. 1-4 this may very well 
be true, because these sayings occur practically in the same order, 
but at intervals, in Mat xviii 7, 6, 15, 21, 22. The whole group, 
bearing on Responsibility for Others, Faith, and Humility, would 
form an appropriate preparation for the teaching on the Second 
Coming, which is narrated after the Miracle of the Ten Lepers ; 
and this first section may be said to attach itself in thought to the 
lessons of the Parable of Dives and Lazarus. 

XVII And he said unto his disciples, It is impossible but 
that occasions of stumbling should come : but woe unto him, 
through whom they come ! 2 It were well for him if a mill- 

224 ST LUKE [XVII 1-5 

stone were hanged about his neck, and he were thrown into 
the sea, rather than that he should cause one of these little 
ones to stumble. 3 Take heed to yourselves : if thy brother 
sin, rebuke him ; and if he repent, forgive him. 4 And if he 
sin against thee seven times in the day, and seven times turn 
again to thee, saying, I repent ; thou shalt forgive him. 

1, 2. OFFENCES. 

1. It is impossible, <$cc. The occurrence of hindrances, obstacles, 
stumbling-blocks is a necessary part of our life here and is over 
ruled by God for the useful purpose of testing and strengthening 
character but that does not affect the responsibility of those who 
introduce them. The references, here and elsewhere (Mat xviii 6 sqq. 
and Mk ix 42), imply that the plight of the offender is unimagin 
ably miserable. 

2. It were, well for him. The striking metaphor is more striking 
still in Mat xviii 6 and Mk ix 42 where it is not the ordinary hand- 
turned millstone (Ai#os /ivXt/cos) as here, but the great mill 
stone, turned by an ass (/xvXos OVIKOS) that is named. 

one of these little ones : cf . vii 28. In both Matthew and Mark this 
teaching is attached to the incident of the Little Child which Luke 
gives later (xviii 15 sqq.). The probability is that the words were 
in both Mark and Q ; that Luke is here (as elsewhere in the Great 
Insertion ) independent of Mark, while Matthew, after his manner 
conflates, combining points from both sources. 

3. 4. FORGIVENESS. St Matthew (xviii 15-35) has a long para 
graph of similar teachings, in which vv. 21, 22 correspond to this. 
It follows his version of The Lost Sheep, and includes a question 
of St Peter s as to forgiveness of his own brother, and concludes 
with the Parable of the Unmerciful Servant. St Matthew may very 
likely have collected scattered sayings on the same subject. It is 
one on which our Lord may have repeated Himself more than once. 

3. if he repent : a necessary preliminary not to the willingness 
to forgive on the part of the injured, but to the capacity to be 
forgiven on the sinner s part. 

4. seven times, i. e. in Jewish symbolism, a complete number 
of times. We may suppose that it was on a later occasion that 
St Peter, brooding on this utterance, and taking it literally, asked 
our Lord the question which (Mat xviii 21) elicited the extension of 
this utterance, viz. until seventy times seven i. e. forgiveness 
has no limit whatever except that imposed by an unforgivable 

(f ) XVII 5-10 Instruction on Faith and Humility 

(a) 5, 6. FAITH. A similar saying is given in Mat xvii 19 in 
answer to the question Why could not we cast it out 1 and again 

XVII s-io] ST LUKE 225 

(without the Mustard Seed simile) by St Mark after they had noted 
the withering of the fig-tree (Mk xi 23). The Mustard Seed is 
clearly proverbial for a tiny nucleus (cf. xiii 19) and was doubtless 
repeated on various occasions. And there is no reason to suppose 
that the Mulberry Tree of Luke and the Mountain of Matthew 
and Mark are inconsistent reports of a single utterance. 

5 And the apostles said unto the Lord, Increase our faith. 
6 And the Lord said, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard 
seed, ye would say unto this sycamine tree, Be thou rooted 
up, and be thou planted in the sea ; and it would have obeyed 

6. as a grain of mustard seed. A nucleus is all that is needed. 
If it is genuine faith, Divine Grace will do the rest, and there can 
be no limit to the reach of its power. 

sycamine. The mulberry tree, which St Luke (xix 4) distin 
guishes from the fig-mulberry or sycamore. This distinction 
is not observed in the LXX, and Hobart (p. 152) points out that 
the popular confusion on the subject is adverted to by Dioscorides, 
Mat. Med. i 181. A physician would readily make the distinction, 
as both were used medicinally and are frequently prescribed in the 
medical writers. 

({3) 7-10. HUMILITY. The Unprofitable Servants : numbered 
by Trench (pp. 484 sqq.) among the Parables. It is certainly a 
striking analogy drawn from life and arguing from the human to 
the Divine, and has the familiar a fortiori suggestion : How much 
greater is God s claim on you, than an earthly master s claim upon 
his slaves ? 

Its teaching is complementary rather than contradictory to the 
gracious utterance of xii 37. There is depicted the actual movement 
of Divine Love in the condescension of Jesus Christ : here the bare 
facts of our primary relation as creatures to the Creator, which 
should breed in us an utter humility far removed from the spirit 
of the elder son in xv 25 sqq. and the mercenary temper of many 
of the strict observers of the Law. 

7 But who is there of you, having a Servant plowing or 
keeping sheep, that will say unto him, when he is come in 
from the field, Come straightway and sit down to meat ; 
8 and will not rather say unto him, Make ready wherewith 
I may sup, and gird thyself, and serve me, till I have eaten and 
drunken ; and afterward thou shalt eat and drink ? 9 Doth 
he thank the Servant because he did the things that were 
commanded ? 10 Even so ye also, when ye shall have done 

1 Gr. bondservant. 
L. 15 

226 ST LUKE [Xvn 7 -xiX2 7 

all the things that are commanded you, say, We are unprofit 
able Servants ; we have done that which it was our duty to do. 

1 Gr. bondservants. 

7. who is there of you . . . ? For this favourite form of intro 
duction cf. xv 4. The two Discourses are linked only by their 
subject-matter the abandon of faith and of humility. 

8. Make ready, &c. A churlish master, according to our 
democratic standards, yet the picture is obviously drawn from the 
life, and represents the norm where slavery exists. It could be 
matched by memories of not a few Christian households where 
those who serve are not technically slaves. 

9. Doth he thank the servant . . . ? This does not of course 
represent the actual attitude of God towards His creatures ; but it 
does represent the claim of the creature upon the Creator s rewarding 
gratitude. We sinners are unprofitable in a further sense. Had we 
served God perfectly since we first drew breath, we should still have 
had no surplus on which to base a claim : as it is, we are hope 
lessly in debt for unrendered service, and have nothing of our own 
wherewith to pay ; cf . Article XIV Of Works of Supererogation. 

10. unprofitable servants : in Syr-Sin. unprofitable is omitted, 
and this reading is accepted by Wellhausen and Blass. Cf . the say 
ing of Antigonus of Socho (in Oesterley, Sayings, 3) : Be not like 
slaves who minister to their lord on condition of receiving a reward ; 
but be like unto slaves who minister to their lord without expecting 
to receive a reward, and let the fear of Heaven be upon you. This 
utterance of Rabbinism militates against the interpretation of 
Grotius and others (see Trench, pp. 85, 86) who make the Parable 
a picture of the Law as opposed to the Gospel. Yet it may represent 
(as Edersheim suggests, L. & T. ii 307) an emphatic protest against 
the fundamental idea of Pharisaism the acquisition of merit that 
can claim a reward. 

Edersheim makes this the last utterance of our Lord to the 
Peraean disciples before going up to Bethany for the Raising of 
Lazarus (Jn xi), which he places between this and the next verse 
(xvii 10 and 11). 

(4) XVII 11 XIX 27 Fourth Period of the < Journeyings : 
The Last Peraean Mission and Journey up to the Passover 
of the Passion 

Edersheim (L. & T. ii 327 ; cf. p. 307) places the first incident 
of this Period after the raising of Lazarus. St John (xi 54) tells us 
how, after the stir which that miracle created, Christ retired with 
His disciples to an obscure place called Ephraim (not now identi 
fiable), and records no more of His movements till the eve of Palm 
Sunday, when He is again in Bethany. 

xviin-iS] ST LUKE 227 

Lk xvii 11 finds Him again up in the North, on the frontier of 
Galilee and Samaria, in the latitude of Scythopolis (Bethshean) and 
of Bethabara (cf. notes on xiv 1, 25). Edersheim conjectures that 
He had travelled back so far to meet His friends of the North, 
including the many women whom Mark (xv 40, 41) records to have 
come up with Him to Jerusalem. 

If it were possible to place the Raising of Lazarus between 
chapters xiii and xiv, and treat all the Discourses of xiv 1 xix 27 as 
belonging to the period of Jn x 40-42, between that Miracle and the 
Passion, the probable locality of chapter xiv would be close to that 
of xvii 11. Plummer places it later, just before the last Prediction 
of the Passion (xviii 31). This arrangement also would obviate a 
journey south between xiv 1 and xvii 11. 

The Great Interpolation continues as far as xviii 14, and up 
to that point the matter is exclusively Lucan except for the Eschato- 
logical Discourse, xvii 20-37. At xviii 15 we join again the triple 
tradition in the incident of the Children and those that follow 
(xviii 15-43), but Luke s special source reappears for a brief space 
in chapter xix (1-27) in the story of Zacchaeus and the Parable of 
the Pounds. 

(a) 11-19 The Ten Lepers (Trench, Mir., pp. 355-362) 

This narrative is so full of Lucan marks of style and phraseology 
that Dr Stanton has singled it out, with three other passages 
(including the Good Samaritan, x 29-37) as certainly told in 
St Luke s own words (Gosp. as Hist. Doc. ii 229). The incident 
is among the most significant and full of teaching that the Gospel 
contains. It tells its own story. 

11 And it came to pass, J as they were on the way to Jeru 
salem, that he was passing Hhrough the midst of Samaria and 
Galilee. 12 And as he entered into a certain village, there 
met him ten men that were lepers, which stood afar off : 
13 and they lifted up their voices, saying, Jesus, Master, 
have mercy on us. 14 And when he saw them, he said unto 
them, Go and shew yourselves unto the priests. And it came 
to pass, as they went, they were cleansed. 15 And one of 
them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, with 
a loud voice glorifying God ; 16 and he fell upon his face at 
his feet, giving him thanks : and he was a Samaritan. 17 And 
Jesus answering said, Were not the ten cleansed ? but where 
are the nine ? 18 3 Were there none found that returned to 

1 Or, as he was 2 Or, between 

3 Or, There were none found . . . save this stranger. 


228 ST LUKE [XVII 11-19 

give glory to God, save this Stranger ? 19 And he said unto 
him, Arise, and go thy way : thy faith hath 2 made thee whole. 

1 Or, alien 2 Or, saved thee 

11. through the midst (Sta /xeo-ov) means between the two. He 
had met His friends from Galilee (cf. notes on xiv 1, 25) and was 
now starting eastward along the frontier, probably near Bethshean. 

12. ten men that were lepers. The healing of a leper is given in 
v 12-16 (q. v.) : but the significance of this second instance recorded 
by St Luke alone is so obvious, and its lessons so different, that it 
cannot be simply described as a doublet. 

13. Jesus, Master. The word is eVio-Tara the one which 
elsewhere St Luke puts into the mouths of the intimate disciples 
(viii 24), and especially Peter (v 5, viii 24, ix 33) and John (ix 49). 
It seems to be a loose equivalent for Rabbi (which Luke never uses) 
with something more of the idea of one who has a right to command. 

14. Go and shew yourselves unto the priests. See on v 14. They 
would probably find a priest at the nearest Jewish town. 

15. turned back. He broke the letter of the Lord s command, 
only to fulfil its spirit the better : interrupting his journey to the 
Levitical priest, he shewed himself to his healer, who was the 
Eternal Priest after the order of Melchizedek. 

As one of the ten he needed moral courage to take a line of his 
own ; as a Samaritan, to humiliate himself before a Jew. And 
moral courage won its reward. On the other hand, as a Samaritan 
he might naturally feel an even deeper gratitude to a Jew who 
had healed him. Cf . Jn iv 9. 

16. and he was a Samaritan. The misery of leprosy so levels 
and obliterates distinctions that (as Plummer observes ad loc.) in 
the leper-houses at Jerusalem Jews and Moslems will live together 
at the present time. 

St Luke here shows that special interest in Samaria, which seems 
to indicate St Philip, Samaria s Evangelist (Ac viii), as one of his 
special sources. See Introd., p. xxi, and note on ix 52. 

18. stranger : rather foreigner, alien (dAA.oyev??s). Deiss- 
mann (op. cit., pp. 74, 75) points out that this word is used in the 
inscription on the barrier of the Temple Court of Gentiles, /^flem 

aAAoyevT? ia"!ropev((r6at KT\., cf . Eph. ii 14 ; Jos. B. J. V V 2. 

The Samaritans (see the interesting account of their origin hi 
2 Kgs xvii 24 sqq.) were descended in part from the various foreign 
immigrants introduced by the Assyrians after the captivity of 
Northern Israel in the eighth century B. c. The restored Jews of 
the sixth century found these people hostile to them, Ez iv (esp. 
7-10), v 3 sqq., cf. Neh iv, vi 1-14, and steadily repudiated kinship 
with them. 

19. thy faith. This is our Lord s usual formula (cf. vii 50, viii 48). 
Is it used here in quite the usual sense ? Is he commending in the 
tenth what was equally true of the nine ? It seems difficult to 

XVII 20-3 1 ] ST LUKE 229 

believe that the wholeness here is not something more than mere 
physical healing and implies a sound spiritual state, even as the 
faith that issues in self -forgetful gratitude is more than that which 
does not. 

(b) 20-37 The Coming of the Kingdom (20, 21) ; The Days 
of the Son of Man (22-37) 

The first brief Discourse is addressed to the Pharisees ; the 
second, longer one, to the Disciples. So in xv xvi He had spoken 
to the Pharisees (xv 3), then to the Disciples (xvi 1), and then 
turned again to the Pharisees (xvi 15). 

The Coming is spoken of in two senses : (a) w. 20, 21, that 
Coming which had already been accomplished, silent and unobserved 
in the advent of Christ and His disciples ; and (6) vv. 22-37, the 
Second Coming which, though unexpected could not be unobserved. 

20 And being asked by the Pharisees, when the kingdom 
of God cometh, he answered them and said, The kingdom of 
God cometh not with observation : 21 neither shall they say, 
Lo, here ! or, There ! for lo, the kingdom of God is %ithin 

22 And he said unto the disciples, The days will come, 
when ye shall desire to see one of the days of the Son of man, 
and ye shall not see it. 23 And they shall say to you, Lo, 
there ! Lo, here ! go not away, nor follow after them : 24 for 
as the lightning, when it lighteneth out of the one part under 
the heaven, shineth unto the other part under heaven ; so 
shall the Son of man be 2 in his day. 25 But first must he 
suffer many things and be rejected of this generation. 26 And 
as it came to pass in the days of Noah, even so shall it be also 
in the days of the Son of man. 27 They ate, they drank, they 
married, they were given in marriage, until the day that 
Noah entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed 
them all. 28 Likewise even as it came to pass in the days of 
Lot ; they ate, they drank, they bought, they sold, they 
planted, they builded ; 29 but in the day that Lot went out 
from Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and 
destroyed them all : 30 after the same manner shall it be 
in the day that the Son of man is revealed. 31 In that day, 

1 Or, in the midst of you 2 Some ancient authorities omit in his day. 

230 ST LUKE [XVII 20-23 

he which shall be on the housetop, and his goods in the house, 
let him not go down to take them away : and let him that is 
in the field likewise not return back. 32 Remember Lot s 
wife. 33 Whosoever shall seek to gain his J life shall lose it : 
but whosoever shall lose his Hife shall 2 preserve it. 34 I say 
unto you, In that night there shall be two men on one bed ; 
the one shall be taken, and the other shall be left. 35 There 
shall be two women grinding together ; the one shall be taken, 
and the other shall be left. 3 37 And they answering say 
unto him, Where, Lord ? And he said unto them, Where the 
body is, thither will the 4 eagles also be gathered together. 

1 Or, soul * Gr. save it alive. 

3 Some ancient authorities add ver. 36 There shall be two men in the field ; the 
one shall be taken, and the other shall be left. * Or, vultures 

20. not with observation, i. e. invisibly or unobtrusively. The 
word used is one of St Luke s medical terms, and is frequent in 
Galen (Hobart, M.L., p. 153). 

21. Lo, here! or, There! Drawing attention to a sudden, startling 
appearance. Cf . Mat xxiv 23, which, however, is not a strict parallel 
see note on v. 23. 

is within you (eVros v/xwj/). Probably in the sense of in your 
midst, among you. It is indeed a Kingdom Spiritual, within 
the hearts of men (cf. Parable of Leaven, xiii 21) : but hardly 
within the Pharisees hearts ! Cf . xi 20, Then is the kingdom of 
God come upon you (fyOao-tv = come before you are aware ). 
Deissmann (op. cit., p. 438) finds The Kingdom of God is within 
you in the so-called Cairo Gospel Fragment, ascribed to the 
third century. 

22-37. The subject of this Discourse to the Disciples is different 
from, but suggested by, our Lord s answer to the question of the 
Pharisees. Canon Streeter (Oxf. Stud., p. 201) styles this The 
Apocalypse of Q. Much of it (cf. on v. 20) is found in Mat xxiv. 

22. The days will come : rather There will come days. This 
verse is peculiar to St Luke. 

one of the days of the Son of man. The days when the bride 
groom is taken away (v 35) and they are longing for the Second 
Advent. The language has the ring of Jn xvi 16, but that refers 
more particularly to the short period between the Crucifixion and 
the Resurrection. 

They were still looking forward to the full manifestation of the 
Messianic Kingdom without a break, in spite of our Lord s prediction 
of His Passion (ix 22, &c.), as the incident of James and John 
recorded in Mat xx 21 sqq. shows. 

23. Lo, there ! Lo, here ! takes up the phrase of v. 21, but refers 
(as in Mat xxiv 23 and Mk xiii 21, 22) to false Christs and false 

XVII 23-32] ST LUKE 231 

rumours of the Second Advent. This apparent parallel in Mk xiii 21 
is one of the nine cases investigated by Sir J. Hawkins (Oxf. Stud., 
pp. 38 sqq.) and adjudged by him to be, in Luke, actually inde 
pendent of the Marcan source. In all these nine cases Matthew and 
Mark agree together, and differ from Luke, as to the occasion. The 
only question remaining is whether Luke has kept the phrase in the 
place it occupied in Q, while Matthew has accommodated it to a 
similar Marcan utterance, or whether Luke has drawn from another 
source than Q, an utterance similar to that found in Mark and 
adopted by Matthew. 

24. as the lightning. Elsewhere our Lord s Advent is described 
as sudden and unexpected (cf. xii 40, xxi 34), and there may be 
something of the kind implied here : the Coming is as unpredictable 
as a flash of lightning. But the main thought seems to be the 
unmistakable visibility of the Coming of the King, in contrast to 
the invisible introduction of the Kingdom (v. 20). 

25. But first must he suffer . . . and be rejected. This is the third 
of the Predictions of the Passion recorded by St Luke (cf . ix 23 and 
44). The fourth and fullest comes in xviii 31, shortly before the 
Passion itself. The terms here most closely resemble those of the 
first, delivered at the time of St Peter s Confession of the Christhood, 
but are less explicit. 

26-32. These illustrations from Gen vii, xviii, and xix are 
among the references of our Lord to the O.T. recorded exclusively 
by St Luke. Cf . iv 25-27 from Kgs. 

26. in the days of the Son of man, i.e. at His Second Coming. 
v. 22 refers to a wistful longing for one of the well-remembered days 
of earthly companionship. These later days after the Passion 
and entering into His glory are called by the same name, though 
the intercourse with Him will then be no longer after the flesh. 

27. They ate, they drank, &c. : lit. (imperf.) were eating, were 
drinking. A generation wholly given up to material interests : 
not guilty because they make use of this world, but because, wholly 
absorbed in it, they take no thought for anything beyond. 

30. the Son of man is revealed. This implies perhaps His presence 
all along. Cf. Mat xxviii 20 a hidden presence till that moment 
shall come. 

31. he which shall be on the housetop. Assigned by Mat (xxiv 
17, 18) to the later Discourse in Holy Week, to which the Lucan 
parallel is Lk xxi. Our Lord may well have uttered the saying more 
than once here in a spiritual sense ; later with literal reference to 
the sudden flight from a doomed Jerusalem but it is perhaps more 
probable that St Matthew has been collecting scattered sayings out 
of Q, after his manner. 

32. Remember Lot s wife. The typical instance (Gen xix 26) of 
one who bartered personal safety out of a desire to salve worldly 
possessions. Many a fire and shipwreck would supply similar 

232 ST LUKE [XVII 33-XVIII 17 

33. Whosoever shall seek to gain, &c. This is one of St Luke s 
so-called doublets. It has already appeared, in substance at 
ix 24 (see note there), in that enunciation of the principles of 
discipleship after the first Prediction of the Passion which is strictly 
parallel to Mk viii 35. St Matthew gives the same saying on the 
same occasion, and also (x 39) after the long charge to the Twelve, 
at their Mission. St Matthew may have found it in Q and grouped 
it in the Charge (cf . note on v. 32) or our Lord may have uttered it 
on all three occasions. 

preserve it. R.V. marg. Gr. save it alive. The word woyoveiV 
is peculiar to St Luke, and is a remarkable one. Medically (frequent 
in Galen) it technically signifies producing alive, enduing with 
life, and it may be regarded as an item in the Evangelist s medical 
vocabulary, though the signification here is rather different (Hobart, 
M.L., p. 155). 

34. two men. The masculine would serve also to indicate man 
and wife, which is perhaps the more natural interpretation. 

the one shall be taken : as was Lot, into safety. 
the other . . . left : like Lot s wife. 

35. two women. This verse (though not the similar v. 34) is 
found, like vv. 31, 32 (where see note) in Mat xxiv. 

36. [There shall be two men in the field ; the one shall be taken, 
and the other shall be left.] Omitted by the best MSS, and so ex 
punged from R.V. Codex Bezae (D) and other ancient MSS have 
it : probably an insertion from Mat xxiv 40. 

37. Where, Lord ? Where shall this taking and leaving 
happen ? Our Lord replies : Wherever the conditions are ful 
filled. There can be no prediction of time or place. (On the intro 
duction of the question, see note on xii 41.) 

W here the body is, &c. Cf. Job xxxix 29, 30. Luke s word o-w/xa 
(cf. Ac ix 40) is here marked by the context as equivalent to the 
TTTw/xa ( carcass ) of Mat xxiv 28. Luke s use is quite classical, 
however (see Plummer, ad loc.). The destruction of the corrupt 
(cf . allusion to Sodom, v. 29) shall take place on the spot, even as 
a carcass is speedily devoured where it lies, by assembling vultures. 

(c) XVIII 1-17 Prayer and Humility. The Importunate 
Widow (1-8), The Pharisee and the Publican (9-14), The 
Little Child (15-17) 

Two parables and an incident which, as they stand, form a 
group on Prayer and Humility. (1) The deadly earnestness neces 
sary for effectual Prayer ; (2) the spirit in which Prayer is to be 
offered, which, fundamentally, is that of (3), the Little Child s 

At xviii 14 we emerge for a moment on to the common ground 
of all three Synoptists ; after which St Luke reverts again to his 


special source or sources for the Incident of Zacchaeus and the 
Parable of the Pounds (xix 1-27). 

eous Judge). Cf . Trench, Par., pp. 491-501. This is a typical instance 
of what Mr Chesterton (Orthodoxy, p. 269) calls our Lord s almost 
furious use of the a fortiori : a form of argument which the Rabbis 
called Light and Heavy, and claimed to find ten instances of it in 
the O.T. (see Edersheim, L. & T. ii, pp. 285-286). Like the Parable 
of the Friend at Midnight (xi 5-8), it readily lends itself to misinter 
pretation : as, e.g., that God is not anxious to answer prayer, but can 
be worried into it. For this reason it has been supposed that, though 
these two Parables formed a part of the common Q source, St 
Matthew omitted them both (cf. Streeter, Oxf. Stud., pp. 192, 202 ; 
also Hawkins, ib. 134), having a tendency to treat the Parables as 
allegories wherein every detail has its exact spiritual counterpart. 
Canon Streeter thinks that v. 1 is a Lucan gloss and that the sense 
of the Parable was originally Apocalyptic (cf. vv. 7 and 8), and 
conjectures that it stood in Q between xvii 37 and the Parable of 
the Pounds. 

XVIII And he spake a parable unto them to the end that 
they ought always to pray, and not to faint ; 2 saying, There 
was in a city a judge, which feared not God, and regarded not 
man : 3 and there was a widow in that city ; and she came 
oft unto him, saying, x Avenge me of mine adversary. 4 And 
he would not for a while : but afterward he said within him 
self, Though I fear not God, nor regard man ; 5 yet because 
this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest she 2 wear me 
out by her continual coming. 6 And the Lord said, Hear 
what Hhe unrighteous judge saith. 7 And shall not God 
avenge his elect, which cry to him day and night, and he is 
longsuffering over them ? 81 say unto you, that he will 
avenge them speedily. Howbeit when the Son of man cometh, 
shall he find 4 faith on the earth ? 

1 Or, Do me justice, of : and so in ver. 5, 7, 8. 2 Gr. bruise. 

3 Gr. the judge of unrighteousness. * Or, the faith 

1. St Luke s preface to the Parable. Here only and in xix 11 
has the Evangelist presented the moral clearly and explicitly at the 
beginning. In v. 9 he indicates the occasion, with a suggestion of 
the moral. Cf. xiv 15. 

always to pray. Here we have one of St Luke s most marked 
characteristics (i 10, ii 37, iii 21, v 16, vi 12, ix 18, ix 28, 29, xi 1, 
xi 5 sqq.). The phrase here is strongly reminiscent of St Paul s 
Pray without ceasing in 1 Thess v 17, and is enumerated by 

234 ST LUKE 

Sir J. Hawkins among the probable reflections of St Luke s intimacy 
with the Apostle (Hor. Syn., p. 197). 

2. which feared not Ood and regarded not man. An absolute 
cynic ; for this is his own estimate of himself (v. 4). Obviously not 
to be pressed as in any way symbolical of the Almighty. True to 
life, probably, then, as in more recent times in the Orient. 

5. lest she wear me out : lit. give me a black eye. A quasi- 
humorous metaphor, found in Aristophanes. The judge was afraid 
that the Widow would, in modern phrase, get on his nerves. There 
may be a further touch of irony in this picture ; for Rabbinism 
taught that God must not be wearied with incessant prayer 
(Plummer). Three times a day was enough ! 

6. Hear what the unrighteous judge saith. Here comes in the 
familiar a fortiori argument. If a cynic, with no idea of justice in 
him, can be worried into performing an act of justice what may 
not be won by persevering prayer from One who is eternal Justice 
and Mercy, and loves to be asked ? 

The unrighteous Judge in the original is a Hebraistic expres 
sion, the Judge of Unrighteousness : cf . Steward of Unrighteous 
ness, Mammon of Unrighteousness (xvi 8, 9). 

7. is longsuffering over them. This is very obscure. It will 
mean either (a) that God is not impatient with His suppliants as 
the Judge with the Widow ; or (6) that though He delays His 
avenging action, the delay must not be interpreted as implying 
uncertainty (cf. 2 Pet iii 1-10). 

8. will avenge them speedily. The tone of this verse (which, in 
a sense, gives the lesson of the Parable) is decidedly Apocalyptic. 
See note on w. 1-8. It reminds us of the How long ? of Rev 
vi 9-11. The Vindication is perhaps to be identified with the 
revelation of the Son of man in xvii 30. If so it links this section 
with the preceding one. 

Deissmann (op. cit., pp. 425 and 432) quotes, in connexion with 
Lk xi 50, a Jewish prayer for vengeance for a murdered girl on a stele 
of the second century B. c. which ends Iva fySt/o/cr^s TO alpa. TO 
avainov KCU TT)V ra^io-r^v . But the verb is also used in the wider 
sense to do right to to protect (cf. Moulton & Milligan, s.v.). 

(Trench, Par., pp. 502-512). The previous Parable was spoken to 
the Disciples : this, apparently, to the Pharisees or their followers 
(v. 9), though not necessarily on the same occasion. It forms a 
natural link between vv. 1-8 and 15-17, inculcating deepest humility 
as the spirit of prevailing prayer. 

9 And he spake also this parable unto certain which 
trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and set *all 
others at nought : 10 Two men went up into the temple to 

1 Gr. the rest. 

xvm 9-12] ST LUKE 235 

pray ; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican. 11 The 
Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank 
thee, that I am not as the rest of men, extortioners, unjust, 
adulterers, or even as this publican. 12 I fast twice in the 
week ; I give tithes of all that I get. 13 But the publican, 
standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto 
heaven, but smote his breast, saying, God, 1 be merciful to me 
2 a sinner. 14 I say unto you, This man went down to his 
house justified rather than the other : for every one that 
exalteth himself shall be humbled ; but he that humbleth 
himself shall be exalted. 

1 Or, be propitiated 2 Or, the sinner 

9. unto certain, &c. This exactly describes the typical Pharisee 
of the Gospels. Edersheim remarks (cf. Plummer, ad loc.) that the 
insertion of this introduction shows that there is no chronological 
connexion with what precedes, though the interval . . . may of 
course have been very short. 

10. went up into the temple to pray. Considering (Edersheim) 
that the Temple- worship was practically all sacrificial, it is good to 
know that God s House was thus used for private prayer (cf . xix 46). 
St Luke has already given us a beautiful instance in Simeon and 
Anna (ii 27, 37) of that fervent spirit of devotion, sublimely expressed 
in Ps Ixxxiv, which represents the brighter side of Jewish personal 
religion, and was not entirely absent from Rabbinism. The enthusi 
astic description of worship in Ecclus 1 reflects the dawn of Phari 
saism. The same devotional use of the Temple by the early Church 
after Pentecost is noted in Ac ii 46, v 12, 42 ; and before Pentecost 
in Lk xxiv 53. 

11. prayed thus. It is not really prayer at all, but self- congratu 
lation, and in v. 12 the very form of prayer is dropped. He almost 
patronizes the Almighty with pity that He has such poor worshippers 
in general at His command. 

extortioners, unjust, adulterers. Here he is doubtless quite honest 
in general, though perhaps self -deceived on the first two counts. 
Self-respect and Pharisaic public opinion had kept him from overt 
crime and gross bodily sin. He was eminently respectable. 

or even as this publican : an arrogant comparison (not uncommon 
among Christians) which fills up the cup of his self -righteousness. 

12. fast twice, &c. Not dishonest or exaggerated. His descrip 
tion of his fasts and tithe-giving is doubtless quite correct. The 
Penteteuchal Law prescribed one Fast only in the year the Day 
of Atonement in September (still alluded to as The Fast in 
Ac xxvii 9). Later on, in commemoration of national calamities, 
various other fasts were instituted (Zech viii 19), in the fourth, 

236 ST LUKE [xvm 12-15 

fifth, seventh, and tenth months. It was a comparatively late 
Pharisaic custom, and a mark of great strictness to fast on Mondays 
and Thursdays as this man did. Edersheim notes that these were 
market-days, so giving opportunity for display. But traditionally 
Monday was the day Moses ascended Mount Sinai, and Thursday 
the day he came down. The early Christians (see Didache, ch viii) 
avoided these days, and fasted on the fourth day (Wednesday) 
presumably as the day of our Lord s Betrayal and Friday, the 
day of the Crucifixion. 

/ give tithes of all that I get. Supererogation in tithes as in fasts. 
The tithing, e. g. of minute herbs, as harvest (cf. note on xi 42) 
was evidently a counsel of perfection. Edersheim (L. and T. ii 291) 
quotes the Mishna s picture of an ideal Pharisee : He tithes all 
that he eats, all that he sells, all that he buys, and is not a guest 
with an unlearned person. 

13. smote his breast. The bowed head and smitten breast of 
this Publican have left their mark on Christian ritual, and are still 
repeated, e. g. in the confiteor of priest and server at the Altar. 
Again and again in Dante s Divine Comedy they symbolize deep 
penitence. Purg. ix 111, x 120, Par. xxii 107. 

For the which I, many a time 
Bewail my sins, and smite upon my breast. . . . 

Per lo quale io piango spesso 
Le mie peccata, e il petto mi percuoto. 

The Christian Priest needs to look into his heart, lest he use the 
Publican s gesture as a Pharisaic form. 

God, be merciful to me a sinner. Rather, the sinner. Like the 
Pharisee, he puts himself in a class by himself but how differently ! 
A converted Pharisee, later, expressed exactly the same point of 
view in 1 Tim i 15 (cf . 1 Cor xv 9). 

14. justified. This Pauline word occurs five times in St Luke s 
Gospel : in the other Gospels only twice (St Matthew). Plummer 
(ad loc.) aptly quotes from the Talmud : So long as the Temple 
stood, no Israelite was in distress ; for as often as he came to it 
full of sin and offered sacrifice, then his sin was forgiven and he 
departed a just man. This means reliance on the terms of Solomon s 
original consecration prayer, 1 Kgs viii 38, 39. The Publican at 
any rate was a clear case for acceptance on those terms, as inter 
preted by Isa i 11-17. 

HEART. This episode is found, in a similar position, in Mat xix 13-15, 
Mk x 13-16. The three accounts are substantially identical. In 
phraseology Luke, who has a few turns of his own, is nearer to 
Mark than Matthew. 

15 And they brought unto him also their babes, that he 
should touch them : but when the disciples saw it, they re 
buked them. 16 But Jesus called them unto him, saying, 

xvm 1 5-1 7] ST LUKE 237 

Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them 
not : for of such is the kingdom of God. 17 Verily I say unto 
you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as 
a little child, he shall in no wise enter therein. 

15. also their babes. Rather even their babes. (3pe<f>ri not 
merely young children (TrcuoYa) as Matthew and Mark. Perhaps 
they are children of one year old, who were sometimes brought to 
the Rabbis for a blessing (Plummer, ad loc.). 

touch them : to convey a blessing. This incident (cf . Prayer Book 
Office for Public Baptism of Infants) forms the Magna Charta 
of Infant Baptism. St Luke s babes would make his Gospel 
ideally better for use there than St Mark s. 

rebuked them. On the ground that the infants were too insignifi 
cant, would waste His precious time. 

16. called them unto him. The middle voice (Trpoo-e/caAeWro) 
perhaps implying that it was a pleasure and a relief to Him to have 
children near Him. 

Suffer the little children (TO. iratoYa). Jesus, true image of God, 
is not overburdened or annoyed by spiritual importunity (cf. 
Jn vi 37, and the lesson of Lk xviii 1-8 above). The verbs suggest 
that it was a natural instinct of children to come to Him, unless 
hindered by others. 

of such. Not of children merely, but of childlike persons 
humble, trustful, receptive (cf. next verse). This saying gathers up 
the teaching of the two preceding Parables. 

17. Whosoever shall not receive, &c. Cf. the parallel Mk x 15, 
and the saying recorded by St Matthew in another context (xviii 3), 
Except ye turn, and become as little children . . . There is only 
one attitude and temper for would-be entrants a humble, trustful, 
childlike receptivity. This verse has a significance for education 
that is not often realized. Growth in religious education, even for 
adults, demands a receptive temper, and a mental and moral 
elasticity which belong to the normal child by nature, to the mature 
and more fixed character only by grace. The subject is quaintly 
and beautifully treated by Francis Thompson, Shelley, p. 28. 
Know you what it is to be a child ? It is something very different 
from the man of to-day. It is to have a spirit yet streaming from 
the waters of baptism ; it is to believe in love, to believe in loveliness, 
to believe in belief ; it is to be so little that the elves can reach to 
whisper in your ear ; it is to turn pumpkins into coaches and mice 
into horses, lowness into loftiness and nothing into everything, for 
each child has its fairy godmother in its own soul ; it is to live in a 
nutshell and count yourself the king of infinite space ; it is 

To see a world in a grain of sand, 

And a heaven in a wild flower, 
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand, 

And eternity in an hour. . . . 

238 ST LUKE [xvm 18-30 

(d) 18-30 The Rich Ruler s Question (vv. 18-23) ; Riches 
and the Kingdom (vv. 19-30) 

This follows the Incident of the Children in all three Synoptists. 
In chapter xvi St Luke gives us special material on the use of 
Wealth ; here he reproduces the common (Marcan) tradition. Here 
again his report is closer to Mark than Matthew s. 

18 And a certain ruler asked him, saying, Good faster, 
what shall I do to inherit eternal life ? 19 And Jesus said 
unto him, Why callest thou me good ? none is good, save one, 
even God. 20 Thou knowest the commandments, Do not 
commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false 
witness, Honour thy father and mother. 21 And he said, 
All these things have I observed from my youth up. 22 And 
when Jesus heard it, he said unto him, One thing thou lackest 
yet : sell all that thou hast, and distribute unto the poor, 
and thou shalt have treasure in heaven : and come, follow me. 
23 But when he heard these things, he became exceeding 
sorrowful ; for he was very rich. 24 And Jesus seeing him 
said, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the 
kingdom of God ! 25 For it is easier for a camel to enter in 
through a needle s eye, than for a rich man to enter into the 
kingdom of God. 26 And they that heard it said, Then who 
can be saved ? 27 But he said, The things which are impos 
sible with men are possible with God. 28 And Peter said, 
Lo, we have left 2 our own, and followed thee. 29 And he said 
unto them, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath 
left house, or wife, or brethren, or parents, or children, for the 
kingdom of God s sake, 30 who shall not receive manifold 
more in this time, and in the 3 world to come eternal life. 

1 Or, Teacher 2 Or, our own homes 3 Or, age 

18. ruler, i. e. of the local Synagogue (Edersheim, L. & T. ii 
338). St Luke alone mentions this. If it is correct, he cannot be 
a very young man (Mat xix 20), though his spiritual immaturity 
and his enthusiastic eagerness ( he came running, and knelt 
. . . , Mk x 17) evince a youthful spirit. 

Good Master. Matthew has Master, what good thing . . . 
and in the reply, Why askest thou me concerning good ? a 
variation which (like that of xxiv 6, q.v.) suggests the phenomena 
of oral transmission. But the change in Matthew (whether due to 

XVIII i 9 -2 4 ] ST LUKE 239 

oral transmission or not) may be due to a wish to avoid the very 
real difficulty of the Marcan answer (Mk x 18, and v. 19 here). 

19. Why callest thou me good ? Good Master innocent 
and commonplace as it sounds to our ears was an unusual form 
of address to a Rabbi. Edersheim says there is no recorded instance 
of it. Our Lord s answer is designed to make the man think and 
measure his words. Though probably not claiming here the Good 
ness of Deity, Christ cannot be denying His own right to the 
epithet (contrast Jn viii 46) ; rather, He is throwing this interlo 
cutor back on the sole underived goodness of the Father, from whom 
the Son whether as God or as Man receives all that He has 
(Jn v 19 sqq.). Jewish writings describe the Almighty as The 
Good One of the World (Edersheim, L. and T. ii 339). 

20. Thou knowest the commandments. He takes the man at his 
own level. There is no need to mention the first (God ward) Table, 
to which the answer would have been a prompt and sincere Yes. 
The position of the fifth commandment (as in Mk) is curious, and 
the omission of the tenth. Mark has it in the form Do not defraud 
(Mk x 19) and Matthew (possibly) in Thou shalt love thy neighbour 
as thyself (Mat xix 19). Cf. Edersheim, ut supra. 

21. All these things have I observed from my youth up . The answer 
is glib, and perhaps superficial, but sincere. Even St Paul, who in 
Rom (especially ch vii) shows how desperately inadequate a good 
Pharisee s attempt to keep the Law might be, can assert before the 
Sanhedrin (Ac xxiii 1), I have lived before God in all good conscience 
until this day. Mark adds (x 21) Jesus looking upon him, loved him. 

22. One thing thou lackest. In one sense a general counsel to 
all Christians : material wealth is always to be at Christ s disposal, 
and never to be allowed to interfere with following Him : in 
another sense special to the man (He did not demand it, e.g. of 
the ladies of viii 3), into whose heart he sees, and sees there that 
for him absolute and immediate renunciation is the only way. 

It is renunciation, not poverty as such, that discipleship demands. 

23. he became exceeding sorrowful. Many will recall G. F. Watts s 
striking picture in the Tate Gallery. The subject was probably too 
subjective to attract early painters. 

It has been customary with commentators to identify this man 
with the subject of Dante s great refusal : 

. . . colui 
Che fece per vilta lo gran rifiuto (Inf. iii 59). 

But (a) it is practically certain that Dante refers to Pope Celestine V, 
and (b) the Gospel record breaks off indecisively, leaving us ground 
to hope that eventually the beloved of Jesus became a disciple. 

24. How hardly . . . ! What an obstacle material wealth is to 
discipleship ! All three Synoptists record this teaching here. A 
very early gloss in Mark interprets it not wrongly How hardly 
shall they that trust in riches . . . 

This obstacle was felt by St Francis of Assisi and his companions, 

240 ST LUKE [xvm 25-31 

and joyous freedom secured by embracing holy poverty in a 
literal sense. Cf . note on vi 20. 

25. a needle s eye. An obvious hyperbole. The Rabbinic equiva 
lent is an elephant through a needle s eye. Cf. Mat xxiii 24, 
swallow the camel. Here St Luke characteristically alters the 
Marcan phrase, using entirely different words to express the same 
meaning. His phrase Sia r pharos fieXovrjs (both words peculiar 
to him) is one of the strongest instances of medical language. 
Each of the two words is a medical technical term of very frequent 
occurrence : T/^/AO. = any perforation, ySeXov^ always the surgical 
needle. The whole phrase occurs in Galen (Hobart, M.L., 
pp. 60, 61). This is not seriously affected by Cadbury s contention 
(Style and Method, p. 45) that the two words occur separately in 
non-medical writers : rprj^a in Polybius, Josephus, and Plutarch ; 
and (3(\6vr) in Plutarch and Lucian. 

26. Then who can be saved ? Wealthy is after all a relative 
term, and any one who possesses anything at all may find that it 
stands in the way of complete self-renunciation. 

27. The things which are impossible, &c. The difference between 
Nature and Grace. Cf. the Baptismal Service : that of His boun 
teous mercy He will grant unto this child that, which by nature he 
cannot have . . . On the merely human plane a man surrounded by 
the lures of wealth cannot be saved : but I can do all things in 
him that strengthened me. Phil iv 13, cf. Mk ix 23, and Lk i 37. 

28. Peter said. Characteristically, and in no wrong spirit, else 
our Lord would have reproved him. Yet he had not been called to 
sell his boats and nets and give the proceeds to the poor. Indeed, 
after the Resurrection we find him and his partners fishing again in 
the Lake (Jn xxi). 

30. manifold more in this time. Not in the very literal Hebraic 
sense of the Book of Job (xlii 10-17). In the fellowship of the Church 
many a convert from heathenism has found untold compensation 
for the terrible sacrifice demanded by confession of Christ. 

the world to come, or age which is in process of being realized 
(Plummer), is but the completion and perfection of the eternal life 
which St John loves to announce as a present possession. 

It is here that Dr Plummer would insert the Raising of Lazarus. 
See notes on xvi 31 and xvii 11 xix 27. 

(e) 31-34 Fuller Prediction of the Passion (cf. ix 23, ix 45, 

xvii 25) 

This is the fourth definite prediction recorded by St Luke. This 
particular occasion is recorded also by Matthew (xx 17, 19) and 
Mark (x 33). The detailed reference is natural nearer the time : and 
probably our Lord knew now that the Sanhedrin had already decided 
upon His arrest and execution (Jn xi 47-53). Fresh details emerge 
which were not in the first elaborate prediction (q. v.) after Peter s 

xvm 3 i-3S] ST LUKE 241 

Confession. All three now record delivery to the Gentiles, and 
mockery. Matthew omits the reference to spitting, and alone 
specifies crucifixion. Luke alone gives reference to O.T. prophecy 
and adds shamefully entreated ; he alone (curiously) does not 
mention the spitting in his record of the fact, xxii 63. 

31 And he took unto him the twelve, and said unto them, 
Behold, we go up to Jerusalem, and all the things that are 
written x by the prophets shall be accomplished unto the Son 
of man. 32 For he shall be delivered up unto the Gentiles, 
and shall be mocked, and shamefully entreated, and spit upon : 
33 and they shall scourge and kill him : and the third day 
he shall rise again. 34 And they understood none of these 
things ; and this saying was hid from them, and they perceived 
not the things that were said. 

1 Or, through 

34. understood none . . . was hid . . . perceived not. A typically 
Hebrew pleonastic triple parallelism (cf. Bartlet, Oxf. Stud., p. 321). 
At first sight St Luke, who habitually spares the Twelve (ib. 72), 
seems to go out of his way to denounce their obtuseness. Further 
consideration shows that this emphatic but general expression takes 
the place in his narrative of the more striking incident of James s and 
John s ambitious request (Mk x 35 sqq., Mat xx 20 sqq.) the 
permanent lesson of which Luke reserves for the Last Supper 
(xxii 24 sqq.). 

(f ) 35-43 The Blind Man at Jericho 

Recorded, but with very curious differences of detail, by all 
three Synoptists (Mat xx 29-34, Mk x 46-52). Matthew gives 
two blind men ; Mark, whose story bears marks of the eye 
witness Peter (see esp. w. 49-51), gives the man s name Barti- 
maeus, son of Timaeus. Luke places the miracle before our Lord 
enters Jericho Matthew and Mark as He is leaving the city. It 
is one of the cases which imply independent witnesses, divergent 
in detail but essentially agreed. It looks as though there had been 
oral transmission at work. 

N.B. In all the Synoptists the miracle is significantly placed 
after an incident which illustrates the blindness of the disciples to 
the meaning of the Lord s words, as though to hint that a time would 
come when He would heal their spiritual blindness. 

35 And it came to pass, as he drew nigh unto Jericho, 
a certain blind man sat by the way side begging : 36 and 

L. 16 

242 ST LUKE [xvm 35-43 

hearing a multitude going by, he inquired what this meant. 

37 And they told him, that Jesus of Nazareth passeth by. 

38 And he cried, saying, Jesus, thou son of David, have mercy 
on me. 39 And they that went before rebuked him, that he 
should hold his peace : but he cried out the more a great 
deal, Thou son of David, have mercy on me. 40 And Jesus 
stood, and commanded him to be brought unto him : and 
when he was come near, he asked him, 41 What wilt thou 
that I should do unto thee ? And he said, Lord, that I may 
receive my sight. 42 And Jesus said unto him, Receive thy 
sight : thy faith hath l ma,de thee whole. 43 And imme 
diately he received his sight, and followed him, glorifying God : 
and all the people, when they saw it, gave praise unto God. 

Or, saved thee 

35. Jericho : cf . on x 30. This famous city was opposite the 
fords of Jordan, on the route by which pilgrims from Galilee who 
would avoid Samaria must needs take. It was the last station 
some 20 miles, or 6 hours, distance from the Holy City. 

In fording the Jordan for this last time our Lord had crossed 
His Rubicon, and declared war a I entrance upon the powers of 
darkness and their allies. 

36. a multitude. It was the throng of Galilean and Peraean 
pilgrims going up to the Passover : but their answer shows that 
their interest was concentrated on Him whom they accompanied 
as much as upon their goal. 

Edersheim (loc. cit.) says that the inhabitants of cities and villages 
en route used to gather in the streets to welcome such pilgrims. 

39. son of David. A recognition of Messiahship frequent in 
St Matthew (who puts it into the mouths also of two blind men 
at Capernaum, ix 27) : here only in all three Synoptists together. 
lesu, Fill David miserere was a frequent petition of the Church in 
the Middle Ages, and survives in our Litany (though some regard it 
there as a corruption of the Sarum Fill Dei vivi). 

42. Jesus said unto him. Mark also makes Him cure with a 
word ; Matthew has He touched their eyes. 

43. all the people : Luke only. Cf . notes on v 26, vii 16. 

(g) XIX 1-10 The Incident of Zacchaeus 

Peculiar to St Luke, as is also the following Parable of the Pounds. 

This conspicuous conversion of a Publican is characteristic of 
the Gospel in which our Lord appears as eating and drinking and 
as the friend of Publicans and Sinners. Cf. xv 1, xviii 13 sq. 

XIX i- 7 ] ST LUKE 243 

XIX And he entered and was passing through Jericho. 
2 And behold, a man called by name Zacchaeus ; and he was 
a chief publican, and he was rich. 3 And he sought to see 
Jesus who he was ; and could not for the crowd, because he 
was little of stature. 4 And he ran on before, and climbed 
up into a sycomore tree to see him : for he was to pass that 
way. 5 And when Jesus came to the place, he looked up, 
and said unto him, Zacchseus, make haste, and come down ; 
for to-day I must abide at thy house. 6 And he made haste, 
and came down, and received him joyfully. 7 And when 
they saw it, they all murmured, saying, He is gone in to lodge 
with a man that is a sinner. 8 And Zacchseus stood, and 
said unto the Lord, Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I 
give to the poor ; and if I have wrongfully exacted aught of 
any man, I restore fourfold. 9 And Jesus said unto him, 
To-day is salvation come to this house, forasmuch as he also 
is a son of Abraham. 10 For the Son of man came to seek and 
to save that which was lost. 

1. was passing through Jericho. Presumably He stayed the 
night there. The scene is vividly described by Edersheim, L. and T. 
ii 351-354. 

2. a man called . . . Zacchceus. Zakkai = just or pure : to 
his fellow Jews a mockery of his life and calling. 

a chief publican : head of the tax and customs department 
(Edersheim). An important official as well as a wealthy one. 

3. to see Jesus who he was. This seems to imply that Zacchaeus 
had not previously known Him. But he had clearly heard of Him 
from some of the fraternity perhaps from the ex-publican Matthew 
and of His gracious kindness to publicans in general. 

4. he ran . . . and climbed. The abandon and unselfconsciousness 
with which he ignores ridicule is a sign of the strength of his desire 
and of the potentiality of discipleship within him. 

sycomore. See note on xvii 6. The fig-mulberry was an easy 
tree to climb (cf. Plummer, ad loc.). 

5. / must abide at thy house. Jesus invites Himself to be 
Zacchaeus guest with the same motive which had prompted Him 
to beg water of the Samaritan woman (Jn iv 7) that He might win 
His way into the man s heart. On St Luke s Gospel of Hospitality, 
see notes on vii 36 and xiv 1 . 

6. received him joyfully. A characteristic touch of the Gospel 
of Joy. 

7. with a man that is a sinner. From this we may perhaps 


244 ST LUKE [XIX 7-14 

conclude( v. 9) that Zacchaeus was not a heathen, but literally as well 
as in the event spiritually, a Son of Abraham. Otherwise they 
would surely have characterized him as a Gentile, and a sinner. 
Cf. Gal ii 15. 

8. ZacchcBus stood, and said ... Standing in Christ s presence 
He solemnly makes over half his great wealth to the poor, and with 
the other half engages to make reparation to those whom he has 
defrauded (Plummer). 

/ restore fourfold. This was the reparation demanded of a sheep - 
stealer (Exod xxii 1) ; and what David regarded as due from the 
man who commandeered the poor man s lamb in Nathan s story, 
2 Sam xii 6. It is an implied confession. The defrauder has become 
at once a penitent, offering full reparation, and a liberal almsgiver. 

10. to seek and to save, dye. A golden saying, preserved only by 
St Luke. Cf. Jn iii 17, 1 Tim i 15. It describes admirably the 
shepherd of xv 3-7, spoken also to publican listeners. It is specially 
appropriate here if Zacchaeus had been one of the lost sheep of the 
house of Israel (Mat x 6). 

(h) 11-27 The Parable of the Pounds (Trench, Par., pp. 513-522) 

On the differentiation of this Parable from that of the Talents in 
Mat xxv 14-30, see Trench, pp. 272 and 513. The chief points are 
admirably summarized by Plummer (ad loc., p. 437). As regards 
disciples, the fundamental teaching of each Parable is that good use 
should be made of the gifts entrusted to us ; but while the Talents 
refers to those gifts which are unequally distributed, the Pounds 
deals with those which all share alike. There is also, in each, the 
suggestion of a long interval before the Second Coming, leaving 
ample time for use or abuse of responsibilities. In Luke s Parable 
there is, in addition, an interwoven story with a political analogue 
(vv. 12, 14, 27) and this is a warning to the hostile Jews. It is 
not likely, as some have supposed, that St Luke found two 
separate parables and combined them into one. 

11 And as they heard these things, he added and spake 
a parable, because he was nigh to Jerusalem, and because they 
supposed that the kingdom of God was immediately to appear. 

12 He said therefore, A certain nobleman went into a far 
country, to receive for himself a kingdom, and to return. 

13 And he called ten Servants of his, and gave them ten 
2 pounds, and said unto them, Trade ye herewith till I come. 

14 But his citizens hated him, and sent an ambassage after 

1 Gr. bondservants. 

! Mina, here translated a pound, is equal to one hundred drachmas. See 
ch. xv 8. 

XTXi 5 -2 7 ] ST LUKE 245 

him, saying, We will not that this man reign over us. 15 And 
it came to pass, when he was come back again, having received 
the kingdom, that he commanded these Servants, unto 
whom he had given the money, to be called to him, that he 
might know what they had gained by trading. 16 And the 
first came before him, saying, Lord, thy pound hath made 
ten pounds more. 17 And he said unto him, Well done, thou 
good 2 servant : because thou wast found faithful in a very 
little, have thou authority over ten cities. 18 And the second 
came, saying, Thy pound, Lord, hath made five pounds. 

19 And he said unto him also, Be thou also over five cities. 

20 And 3 another came, saying, Lord, behold, here is thy pound, 
which I kept laid up in a napkin : 21 for I feared thee, because 
thou art an austere man : thou takest up that thou layedst 
not down, and reapest that thou didst not sow. 22 He saith 
unto him, Out of thine own mouth will I judge thee, thou 
wicked 2 servant. Thou knewest that I am an austere man, 
taking up that I laid not down, and reaping that I did not 
sow ; 23 then wherefore gavest thou not my money into the 
bank, and 4 I at my coming should have required it with 
interest ? 24 And he said unto them that stood by, Take 
away from him the pound, and give it unto him that hath the 
ten pounds.. 25 And they said unto him, Lord, he hath ten 
pounds. 26 I say unto you, that unto every one that hath 
shall be given ; but from him that hath not, even that which 
he hath shall be taken away from him. 27 Howbeit these 
mine enemies, which would not that I should reign over them, 
bring hither, and slay them before me. 

1 Gr. bondservants. 2 Gr. bondservant. * Gr. the other. 

* Or, / should have gone and required 

11. as they heard these things : therefore, before He left Jericho. 
because he was nigh to Jerusalem : and Jewish hostility was 

coming to a crisis. This accounts for the political or warning 
element in the parable. 

because they supposed. This accounts for the main body of the 
parable, and, in particular, the lesson of patient waiting for the 
Return, and active, responsible service in the interval. 

12. A certain nobleman. The details would be unaccountable 
had we not the key in Josephus, Ant. XVII viii 1, ix 1-3, xi 1-4 ; 
B.J. II ii 4-7. Archelaus (like his father, Herod the Great) 

246 ST LUKE [xix 12-26 

journeyed to Rome to receive from Augustus the kingdom 
left him by that father s will. His subjects, meanwhile, revolted, 
and sent an embassy to Rome to oppose his claims. The embassy 
was only successful in so far as Archelaus was given the lower title 
of Ethnarch and put on probation. This happened in 4 B. c., 
some 30 years before our Lord speaks. 

13. gave them ten pounds. See note on xv 8. Here the 
represents a sum equal to 100 drachmae, rather less than 4 of our 
money, but with a much larger purchasing power. 

This is one of the decisive points of difference between this 
Parable and the Talents. Here the lord gives a comparatively 
small (and equal) sum to each of his household slaves, as a test of 
faithfulness and capacity : there he divides up his whole property 
and distributes vast sums (the talent = at least 60 pounds ) in 
different proportions to each of three, according to his several 

Trade ye. Carry on business make the fullest possible use 
of the resources entrusted to you, and develop them to the utmost. 

14. But his citizens. Here comes in the political strain in the 
parable. The facts of Archelaus s life are used to symbolize the 
hostility of the Jews to their rightful spiritual king, Messiah. The 
citizens (in v. 27 enemies ) represent the hostile Jews ; the 
slaves the disciples. 

15. received the kingdom. Augustus confirmed Archelaus in his 
rule, and he returned to take it up : even so shall the Son of David 
be confirmed in His kingdom. 

17. have thou authority over ten cities. This reward, consisting 
in higher responsibilities, is only hinted at in the Talents. 

20. another came. Only three are instanced as examples of 
the ten. 

Lord, behold, here is thy pound. This is the point which supplies 
the strongest argument for the original identity of the two parables. 
The whole of vv. 20-25 (with the exception of the interrupting 
verse 25) is in detailed correspondence with Mat xxv 24 sqq. 

24. Take away from him. This judgement represents, or is 
based on, a law governing all life. Those powers and faculties which 
we fail to use and develop gradually disappear become atrophied. 

give it unto him. Again symbolizing a natural law. See on v. 26. 

25. they said unto him. They are probably the eager listeners, 
who here interrupt our Lord. A striking and graphic touch. 

26. / say unto you, will be our Lord s answer to v. 25 ; in which 
case the person changes again in v. 27, for there the King of the 
Parable is certainly speaking. 

unto every one that hath, &c. This is one of St Luke s doublets 
(Hawkins, Oxf. Stud., p. 34). He has given it already at viii 18 
(parallel to Mk iv 25 and almost to Mat xiii 12). St Matthew has it 
also at the end of the Parable of the Talents. We may take it as 
certain that this was a characteristic utterance of Christ often 

XIX 27-XXIII 56] ST LUKE 247 

repeated. It expresses in pithy form a natural law which holds 
good in the spiritual world. 

27. these mine enemies, &c. : cf . Josephus, B. J. II vii 3. And 
now Archelaus took possession of his ethnarchy, and used not the 
Jews only, but the Samaritans also, barbarously ; and this out of 
his resentment of their old quarrels with him. A part of the 
historical setting of the Parable ; but containing a terrible 
warning to the Jews (by way of spiritual analogy) to make peace 
with the Messiah ere it be too late to plead for mercy. 

28. he went on before. The announcement of this departure from 
Jericho (anticipated by the refrain in ix 52, &c.) ushers in the 
Story of the Passion. 

(cf. Mat xxi 1 xxvii 66, Mk xi 1 xv 47, Jn xii 12 xix 42) 

Here all four Gospels draw together, and the fourth has more 
parallels with the Synoptists than elsewhere. Of the Synoptists 
St Luke is decidedly the most distinctive. Some of the most 
precious features of the Passion Story are due to him : the Lament 
over Jerusalem on Palm Sunday (xix 43 and 44), the Teaching on 
Humility at the Last Supper (xxii 24 sqq.), the Angel in the Garden 
and the Bloody Sweat (if genuine, xxii 43, 44, see notes), the Episode 
of the Daughters of Jerusalem (xxiii 27 sqq.), and the First, 
Second, and Seventh of the Seven Words from the Cross (xxiii 34, 
43, 46). 

St Luke s practical independence of Mark and apparently com 
plete independence of Q in this part of his Gospel is claimed by 
Sir John Hawkins after a minute study of the nucleus of the Passion 
narrative, Lk xxii 14 xxiv 10 (Oxf. Stud., pp. 76-94), comparing 
these 123 verses with the 346 earlier in the Gospel which are 
founded in some sense on the Marcan basis, as regards (a) changes 
in phraseology, (6) introduction of new matter, (c) transpositions 
and inversions. All these, he finds, point to the conclusion of an 
oral Gospel probably the oral teaching of Luke the fellow- 
worker of St Paul (cf . Philem 24), founded originally on the Marcan 
outline. The Passion was clearly the central subject of St Paul s 
preaching (1 Cor i 17, 23, ii 2, xv 3). There is in St Paul s speeches 
in Acts no parallel to Ac ii 22, x 38. Finally, any preacher of to-day 
will find himself using St Luke s additions to the Passion narrative 
far more often than the Matthaean additions. 

Dr Vernon Bartlet (Oxf. Stud., p. 336) thinks that the first place 
here was given to a vivid narrative supplied by Philip the Evangelist. 

Professor C. H. Turner (see notes on xxiii 50, 53) thinks that the 
phenomena of the narrative of the Entombment were derived at first 
hand from Joanna, but that St Luke had seen the first Gospel when 
his own was very near completion, and borrowed from it just 
a touch here and there. 

248 ST LUKE [XIX 2 8-XXlll 56 

We may divide this section of the Gospel into four parts : 

(1) xix28 xxi38. From the Triumphal Entry to the Betrayal. 

(2) xxii 1-53. From the Betrayal to the Arrest. 

(3) xxii 54 xxiii 32. The Trials The Way of the Cross. 

(4) xxiii 33-56. The Crucifixion and Entombment. 

(1) XIX 28 XXI 38 The Triumphal Entry to the Betrayal 

(a) Palm Sunday (xix 28-48) : the Triumphal Entry (xix 28^4) ; 
the Cleansing of the Temple and Teaching therein (xix 45^48). 

(b) Last Days of Public Teaching (xx 1 xxi 4) : the Question of 
Authority (xx 1-8) ; the Parable of the Vineyard (xx 9-18) ; the 
Question of Tribute (xx 19-26) ; the Question of the Resurrection 
(xx 27-40) ; Christ s own Question (xx 41-44) ; Warning against the 
Scribes (xx 45-47) ; the Widow s Offering (xxi 1-4). 

(c) The Great Prophecy of the End (xxi 5-38) : the Doom of the 
Temple False Signs (xxi 5-9) ; Troubles to Come (xxi 10-19) ; 
the Doom of the Holy City (xxi 20-24) ; the Coming of the Son of 
Man (xxi 25-27) ; Practical Application Lesson of the Fig-tree 
(xxi 28-33) ; Warning to be Ready (xxi 34-36). 

(d) Farewell to the Temple (xxi 37, 38). 

(2) XXII 1-53 From the Betrayal to the Arrest 

(a) The Betrayal (xxii 1-6). 

(6) The Last Supper (xxii 7-38) : the Preparation (xxii 7-13) ; 
the Supper Institution of the Eucharist (xxii 14-23) ; the Lesson 
of Humility (xxii 24-30) ; Warnings after Supper (xxii 31-38). 

(c) Gethsemane : [The Agony and Bloody Sweat (xxii 39-46)]. 

(d) The Arrest : Healing of Malchus s Ear (xxii 47-53). 

(3) XXII 54 XXIII 32 The Trials The Way of the Cross 

(a) First Jewish Trial St Peter s Denial (xxii 54-65). 

(b) Second Jewish Trial the Great Confession (xxii 66-71). 

(c) Roman Trial, before Pilate (xxiii 1-7). 

(d) Christ Before Herod (xxiii 8-12). 

(e) Roman Trial Resumed Pilate s Condemnation (xxiii 13-25). 
(/) The Way to Calvary (xxiii 26-32) : Simon of Cyrene (xxiii 26) ; 

Daughters of Jerusalem (xxiii 27-31) ; Two Malefactors (xxiii 32). 

(4) XXIII 33-56 The Death and Burial 

(a) The Crucifixion and Death (xxiii 33-49) ; Christ Crucified 
(xxiii 33-38) ; the Penitent Robber (xxiii 39-43) ; the Darkness 
(xxiii 44, 45) ; the End (xxiii 46-49). 

(b) The Entombment (xxiii 50-56). 

xix 28, 29 ] ST LUKE 249 

(1 ) XIX 28 XXI 38 From the Triumphal Entry to the Betrayal 
(a) XIX 28-48 Palm Sunday 

Contrary to the other two Synoptists St Luke seems to put the 
entry into Jerusalem and the Cleansing of the Temple on the same 
day. The cleansing probably belongs to the following day. 

28 And when he had thus spoken, he went on before, 
going up to Jerusalem. 

29 And it came to pass, when he drew nigh unto Beth 
phage and Bethany, at the mount that is called the mount of 
Olives, he sent two of the disciples, 30 saying, Go your way 
into the village over against you ; in the which as ye enter ye 
shall find a colt tied, whereon no man ever yet sat : loose him, 
and bring him. 31 And if any one ask you, Why do ye loose 
him ? thus shall ye say, The Lord hath need of him. 32 And 
they that were sent went away, and found even as he had 
said unto them. 33 And as they were loosing the colt, the 
owners thereof said unto them, Why loose ye the colt ? 34 And 
they said, The Lord hath need of him. 35 And they brought 
him to Jesus : and they threw their garments upon the colt, 
and set Jesus thereon. 36 And as he went, they spread their 
garments in the way. 37 And as he was now drawing nigh, 
even at the descent of the mount of Olives, the whole multitude 
of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud 
voice for all the 1 mighty works which they had seen ; 38 saying, 
Blessed is the King that cometh in the name of the Lord : 
peace in heaven, and glory in the highest. 39 And some of 
the Pharisees from the multitude said unto him, 2 Master, 
rebuke thy disciples. 40 And he answered and said, I tell 
you that, if these shall hold their peace, the stones will cry out. 

1 Gr. powers * Or, Teacher 

28. going up to Jerusalem : from Jericho. Here He traverses 
the scene of the Good Samaritan (x 30 sqq.), on His way to con 
summate the rescue of forlorn humanity at the price of His own 

29. Bethphage and Bethany. On Bethany see note on x 38. It 
is remarkable that while the visit to Mary and Martha in an un 
named village follows immediately on the story about the Jerusalem- 
Jericho road, St Luke s first mention of Bethany follows the mention 

250 ST LUKE [XIX 30-41 

of His journey from Jericho towards Jerusalem. Bethphage is, so far, 

30. a colt . . . whereon no man ever yet sat. Evidently a deliberate 
intention on our Lord s part to fulfil literally Zech ix 9 (which is 
cited at this point in Mat xxi 5) . . . riding upon an ass, even upon 
a colt the foal of an ass ; cf. also Genxlix 11. Papini (p. 358) con 
siders that the unbroken colt recalls the spirit and dignity of the 
wild-ass of the O.T., and contributes to the triumphal rather 
than to the humble character of the procession. There is, in any 
case, a sort of virginal appropriateness in the first use of the animal, 
like that of the cattle on which had come no yoke, to draw the 
Ark of God (1 Sam vi 7). 

31. thus shall ye say, The Lord hath need of him. It is impossible 
to say whether this implies more than human insight into the facts 
of the situation, or simply a previous private arrangement with the 
owner. So too with the man bearing a pitcher of water in xxii 10. 

33. the owners, i. e. the owner and his friends (?). Mark has 
certain of them that stood by. 

36. spread their garments. All three Synoptists mention this 
mark of homage. Luke says nothing of the palm branches which 
have given the name to the day (Mat, Mk). John (xii 13) speaks 
of a crowd with palm-branches coming out of the city to meet Him. 

37. to rejoice and to praise God. The description of the en 
thusiasm characteristic of St Luke (cf . xiii 17, xviii 43) ; Matthew 
and Mark only mention the formal utterance. Among the mighty 
works will be the healing of Bartimaeus (Lk) and the Raising of 
Lazarus (Jn xii 18). 

38. peace in heaven, and glory in the highest : cf . the glory and 
peace of the angel choir (ii 14), to the accomplishment of which 
the Evangelist sees Him moving. The cries are thus reported by the 
other two Synoptists. 

Mk xi 9, 10 

Hosanna ; Blessed is he that cometh 
in the name of the Lord : 

Mat xxi 9 

Hosanna to the son of David : 
Blessed is he that cometh in the 

Blessed is the kingdom that cometh, name of the Lord ; 

the kingdom of our father David : Hosanna in the highest. 

Hosanna in the highest. 

39. some of the Pharisees. St Matthew puts this protest later, 
ascribing it to the Chief Priests and Scribes when the children 
were singing in the Temple (xxi 15) in the same strain. 

40. the stones will cry out : a proverbial expression. Cf . Hab ii 11 
the stone shall cry out of the wall, and the beam out of the timber 
shall answer it. 

41-44. LAMENTATION OVER JERUSALEM. This is one of St 
Luke s additions to our knowledge of the Passion Story. There is 
nothing corresponding to it in Mat xxi, Mk xi, or Jn xii. Apart 
from the unmatched pathos of the picture and what it involves, 
there are two special points of interest to be observed : (a) the 

XIX 41-44] ST LUKE 251 

apparent doublet. The previous lament, xiii 34, 35, is the true 
parallel to Mat xxiii 37-39, though differently placed. We may 
trust St Luke s accuracy here. (6) There are the details of the 
prediction, which have been arraigned again and again as too near 
the facts of A. D. 70 to be anything but a vaticinium post eventum. 
Cf. note on xxi 21. 

41 And when he drew nigh, he saw the city and wept over 
it, 42 saying, *If thou hadst known in this day, even thou, 
the things which belong unto peace ! but now they are hid 
from thine eyes. 43 For the days shall come upon thee, when 
thine enemies shall cast up a 2 bank about thee, and compass 
thee round, and keep thee in on every side, 44 and shall dash 
thee to the ground, and thy children within thee ; and they 
shall not leave in thee one stone upon another ; because thou 
knewest not the time of thy visitation. 

1 Or, that thou hadst known " Gr. palisade. 

43. For the days shall come, &c. : better, There shall come 
days. The phraseology of this passage has been regarded by some 
as so substantially true to the facts of the Roman siege as to proclaim 
the utterance a prophecy after the event/ and so a sign that the 
whole Gospel is to be dated after A. D. 70 (cf. note on xxi 20). 

Dr Nairne (Epistle of Priesthood, p. 108) judges otherwise. The 
foreseeing of the Fall of Jerusalem . . . was but a part of the common 
sense of all shrewd observers of those times. As for the details, a 
glance at references to sieges in the O.T., e. g. 2 Kgs xxv 1, Eccl 
ix 14, Isa xxix 3, xxxvii 33, Ezek iv 2, xvii 17, xxvi 8, Hos xiv 1, 
will show what a large proportion of St Luke s phraseology is found 
in the LXX with which he was familiar. One passage presents so 
remarkable a parallel that we exhibit it here side by side with the 
text of St Luke. 

Lk xix 43. Ezek iv 2. 

napt/j,pa\ov(riv ol (\0poi ffov \dpa.Ka ffoi irf/Mj3aX?s fir avrrjv x&P alta " a * S&fffts 

KCLI TTepiKvK\uffovaiv at . . . ir&vroOtv. fir avr^v TrapfuPoXds, 

Cf. Ezek xxvi 8. 
Kal noi f]ff(t firi at KVK\CI> \apaKa. 

Isa xxix 3 is also strikingly parallel. 

44. and shall dash thee . . . and thy children : cf . Ps cxxxvii 9 
where the same verb eSac^eiv is used. Is it a conscious reference : 
Thou shalt be treated like Babylon ? 

shall not leave . . . one stone, &c. So all three Synoptists. The 
phrase is naturally repeated in xxi 6. 

ike, time of thy visitation. The visitation already referred to by 
Zacharias in his Benedictus (i 68). It includes the whole period since 
the Nativity of Christ ; more especially since the Baptist s call, 

252 ST LUKE [Xix 44 - 4 6 

and most particularly, within the Ministry, the visits to Jerusalem 
recorded by St John and possibly reflected in St Luke s narrative. 
Cf . xiii 34 and note. 

On the Triumphal Entry in Art see Jameson, Hist, of O. L., 
vol. ii, pp. 6-10. Mrs Jameson reproduces a representation from 
an ancient sarcophagus, another from an early miniature, and a 
drawing by Taddeo Gaddi, which Mrs Jenner, Christ in Art, p. 88, 
describes as one of the most adequate and beautiful renderings 
of the subject. P. L. W. (Passion) gives Fra Angelico. 

According to Jn ii 1422 He had cleansed the Temple once before, 
in that early Judaean Ministry which lies outside the Synoptic record. 
If so, the effect of that first cleansing had worn off, and the old 
trafficking had been resumed. With added indignation He repeats 
act of two and a half years before. 

Matthew and Mark are probably right in postponing this episode 
till the Monday in Holy Week. 

The boldness of the Triumphal Entry is only exceeded by this 
action, within the Temple precincts, of one whom the members 
of the Sanhedrin had already devoted to death. In the procession 
He was conducted ; here He conducts, and leads the assault upon 
the citadel of Mammon (cf . Papini, p. 364). It is left to Titus, says 
Papini (p. 363), to dismantle, burn, and loot : but this is the true 
destruction of the Temple. By this act He wounds 20,000 priests, 
and scatters their commercial associates. Faced by a common ruin 
they unite to purchase a traitor and a cross (ib., p. 368). 

45 And he entered into the temple, and began to cast 
out them that sold, 46 saying unto them, It is written, And 
my house shall be a house of prayer : but ye have made it 
a den of robbers. 

47 And he was teaching daily in the temple. But the 
chief priests and the scribes and the principal men of the 
people sought to destroy him : 48 and they could not find 
what they might do ; for the people all hung upon him, 

45. And he entered-into the temple, &c. St Luke s omission here 
of details such as buyers, money-changers, dove-sellers, and the 
carrying of vessels (Mk xi 15, 16) is strong evidence that he is not 
using the Marcan source as his basis. Cf. initial note on xix 28 
xxiii 56. 

46. It is written. Isa Ivi 7 ; cf. Jer vii 11. 

den of robbers. The phrase is in all three Synoptists here, and when 
compared with the phrase of Jn ii 16 a house of merchandise 
shows the added indignation spoken of above. 

XIX 4 7-XXI 4 ] ST LUKE 253 

47, 48. Compare xxi 37, 38. The two passages mark the 
beginning and end of the last days of public teaching. Mk xi 18, 19 
gives substantially the same record, though there is great difference 
of phraseology. Mark says that every evening He went forth out 
of the city, and Matthew specifies to Bethany, while Luke (xxi 37) 
speaks as though He bivouacked on the Mount of Olives. 

47. was teaching daily, i. e. Monday, Tuesday, and possibly 
Wednesday (see note on xxi 37). The popularity of this teaching 
is brought out here : the people all hung upon him, listening, and 
in xxi 38 all the people came early in the morning . . . 

(b) XX 1 XXI 4 Last Days of Public Teaching (Tuesday and 

Wednesday (?)) 

Matthew and Mark give at this point the story of the Withering 
of the Fig-tree, an acted parable, which perhaps consciously 
looks back to the spoken parable of Lk xiii 6-9. St Luke, who 
alone records that, has no need here to repeat an episode with 
precisely the same lesson. Cf. Luke s omission of the Feast in 
Simon s House (Mat xxvi 6 sqq., Mk xiv 3 sqq.). See note on 
xxii 1-53, and Hawkins, Oxf. Stud., p. 69. 

1-8. THE QUESTION OP AUTHORITY : Mat xxi 23-27, Mk xi 
27-33. Tuesday in Holy Week is The Day of Questions. The 
first of these is put by the Chief Priests, Scribes and Elders, 
doubtless after an informal meeting of the authorities in the early 
morning (Edersh. L. and T. ii 381-383), their object being to con 
front Jesus when He had a fresh audience about Him, before they 
had become too much attracted by the spell of His teaching. 

XX And it came to pass, on one of the days, as he was 
teaching the people in the temple, and preaching the gospel, 
there came upon him the chief priests and the scribes with 
the elders ; 2 and they spake, saying unto him, Tell us : 
By what authority doest thou these things ? or who is he that 
gave thee this authority ? 3 And he answered and said unto 
them, I also will ask you a Question ; and tell me : 4 The 
baptism of John, was it from heaven, or from men ? 5 And 
they reasoned with themselves, saying, If we shall say, From 
heaven ; he will say, Why did ye not believe him ? 6 But 
if we shall say, From men ; all the people will stone us : for 
they be persuaded that John was a prophet. 7 And they 
answered, that they knew not whence it was. 8 And Jesus 
said unto them, Neither tell I you by what authority I do these 

1 Gr. word. 

254 ST LUKE [XX 2-12 

2. Tell us : By what authority doest thou these things ? Referring 
probably (a) to the cleansing of the Temple, and certainly (6) to 
His daily systematic instruction within the precincts. His Triumphal 
Entry and expulsion of the traffickers had made Him the central 
figure in Jerusalem. The crowds that assembled to listen to Him 
first thing each morning constituted Him a public Teacher. He 
could no longer pose as an occasional and unconventional instructor, 
a Haggadist, or teller of legends : and a Rabbi must qualify, be 
chosen, and be ordained (Edersh. L. and T. ii 382). 

3. / also will ask you, &c. Here, as often (cf ., e. g., x 26), our Lord 
throws back the questioners on themselves by putting a counter- 
question. This time the object is not only to make them think, 
but to silence them. In naming John the Baptist He gives His 
credentials and names the Source from which His authority is 
derived. If John s commission was from Heaven, then clearly 
the Coming One whom He announced drew His authority from 
Heaven too. 

6. all the people will stone us. They had come up thus early 
hoping to infuriate the mob against Jesus as their brethren after 
wards did against Paul (Ac xxi 27) and get them to stone Him ; 
cf . Jn viii 59. But now they feared for themselves : the crowd was 
already showing signs of taking sides against them. 

7. they knew not whence it was. The religious leaders of Judaism 
confessed that they had not made up their minds on the most 
burning religious question not only of the last three years but of 
countless centuries. Their cowardly answer may have been grossly 
dishonest : but, true or false, it effectually put them in the wrong. 

HUSBANDMEN : Mat xxi 33-46, Mk xii 1-12. Trench, Par., pp. 199- 
218. The variations in Matthew and Luke point to a non-Marcan 
source ; but there is substantial identity, and the interweaving of the 
quotation from Ps cxviii 22 appears in the same place in each. The 
hearers especially with the details of hedge and wine-press and 
tower which appear in Matthew and Mark would at once recall 
the Vineyard of Isa v 1-7, and mark out the subject of the story as 
the House of Israel and the Men of Judah (Isa v 7). 

9 And he began to speak unto the people this parable : 
A man planted a vineyard, and let it out to husbandmen, and 
went into another country for a long time. 10 And at the 
season he sent unto the husbandmen a Servant, that they 
should give him of the fruit of the vineyard : but the husband 
men beat him, and sent him away empty. 11 And he sent 
yet another Servant : and him also they beat, and handled 
him shamefully, and sent him away empty. 12 And he sent 

1 Gr. bondservant. 

XX 9-1 3] ST LUKE 255 

yet a third : and him also they wounded, and cast him forth. 

13 And the lord of the vineyard said, What shall I do ? I will 
send my beloved son : it may be they will reverence him. 

14 But when the husbandmen saw him, they reasoned one 
with another, saying, This is the heir : let us kill him, that 
the inheritance may be ours. 15 And they cast him forth 
out of the vineyard, and killed him. What therefore will the 
lord of the vineyard do unto them ? 16 He will come and 
destroy these husbandmen, and will give the vineyard unto 
others. And when they heard it, they said, 3 God forbid. 

17 But he looked upon them, and said, What then is this that 
is written, 

The stone which the builders rejected, 

The same was made the head of the corner ? 

18 Every one that falleth on that stone shall be broken to 
pieces ; but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will scatter him as 

1 Gr. Be it not ao. 

9. A man planted a vineyard, Cf . the certain man of many 
parables (e. g. xv 11). The planter is the Almighty ; cf. Ps Ixxx 8 : 

Thou broughtest a vine out of Egypt: 

Thou didst drive out the nations, and plantedst it. 

10. at the season. The vintage season of the fifth year after 
planting according to the rule of Lev xix 23-25. This would leave 
time for the tenants to develop a sense of absolute ownership. 

sent ... a servant. In Matthew and Mark the servants are sent in 
groups and are treated variously, some of them killed: in Luke 
(vv. 10-12), three are sent in succession, and each is treated with 
greater brutality : but the climax of murder is reserved for the son. 
The servants are, of course, the prophets ; cf. xi 49-51, xiii 33, 34. 

that they should give him of the fruit : according to the m&tayer 
system still in vogue in parts of France and Italy (though gradually 
dying out in the latter), by which, instead of rent, the tenant pays 
the owner a proportion of the produce. 

13. my beloved son. That He meant Himself would probably 
be clear to not a few of the listeners : certainly to Peter, John, and 
James (cf . ix 35). He had been so designated at His baptism (iii 22), 
but not to the world in general. If we may trust as historical the 
impression left on us by the fourth Gospel, the leaders of the Jews 
also would be familiar with His claim, and recognize that He was 
speaking of Himself. 

it may be they will reverence him. Our Lord thus puts Himself 
on a different level from the prophets. 

256 ST LUKE [XX 14-26 

15. cast Mm forth. So Jesus suffered without the gate, 
Heb xiii 12 ; cf . Jn xix 17. Incidentally a great deal of controversy 
as to the exact site of the Crucifixion has turned on the position of 
the wall of Jerusalem at that date. 

16. He will come and destroy . . . Matthew has a more dramatic 
point here. The question is answered not by our Lord Himself, but 
by the crowd. They say unto him : He will miserably destroy, &c. 

God forbid. // yeVon-o expression of incredulous dismay. This 
is a characteristic phrase of St Paul s and may be a reflection 
of St Luke s companionship with him (Hawkins, Hor. Syn., p. 197). 
Here it represents an interruption on the part of the listeners like 
the Lord, he hath ten pounds of xix 25. St Matthew (xxi 41) 
brings in the listeners earlier (see preceding note). Is it not possible 
that we have here two actual utterances of the audience ? One is 
an answer to our Lord s question as phrased in St Matthew, by 
those whose whole attention is absorbed in the development of the 
story ; the other a counter-cry from those who are more interested 
in the (to them) obvious application of the story, and realize at once 
what an appalling catastrophe to Judaism the glib answer of their 
fellows forebodes. 

19-26. THE QUESTION OF TRIBUTE : Mat xxii 15-22, Mk xii 
13-17. See Edersh. L. and T. ii 383-386. Verse 19 connects it 
closely with the preceding parable ; which it also follows immediately 
in Mark, with a similar but shorter link. 

19 And the scribes and the chief priests sought to lay 
hands on him in that very hour ; and they feared the people : 
for they perceived that he spake this parable against them. 
20 And they watched him, and sent forth spies, which feigned 
themselves to be righteous, that they might take hold of his 
speech, so as to deliver him up to the rule and to the authority 
of the governor. 21 And they asked him, saying, faster, 
we know that thou sayest and teachest rightly, and acceptest 
not the person of any, but of a truth teachest the way of God : 

22 Is it lawful for us to give tribute unto Caesar, or not ? 

23 But he perceived their craftiness, and said unto them, 

24 Shew me a 2 penny. Whose image and superscription hath 
it ? And they said, Caesar s. 25 And he said unto them, 
Then render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar s, and unto 
God the things that are God s. 26 And they were not able to 
take hold of the saying before the people : and they marvelled 
at his answer, and held their peace. 

1 Or, Teacher s See marginal note on Mat xviii 28. 

XX i 9 -2 9 ] ST LUKE 257 

19. the. scribes and the chief priests : as in xix 47, 48. The Scribes 
would be Pharisees and the Chief Priests Sadducees. Matthew and 
Mark introduce also the Herodians, whom St Luke never mentions, 
St Mark records an earlier alliance between Pharisees and Herodians 
(Mk iii 6), people whose views and principles were poles apart, but 
who yet could combine in a common hatred. 

feared the people. St Luke uses here his special word /Xaos, which 
occurs (from xviii 43 onwards) fifteen times, of the people as 
a prime factor in the situation at Jerusalem. Dr V. Bartlet 
regards this as indicating a special source (Oxf. Stud., p. 338). 

20. they watched (him). Perhaps better They watched (their 

spies, which feigned themselves to be righteous. Cf. the expression 
in Gen xlii 11, 31, We are true men; we are no spies. The fear 
bred of His enhanced popularity reduced them to methods of low 

the governor : Pontius Pilate, before whom they had the effrontery 
three days later to charge Him with forbidding to give tribute to 
Caesar (xxiii 2). The question of tribute was one of lurid interest 
for the Roman Procurator, for it was this that had excited the 
revolt of Judas of Galilee in A. D. 6 (Jos. Ant. XVIII i 1 ; Ac v 37). 

24. Shew me a penny : a denarius (see on vii 41), the money in 
which the poll-tax must be paid. 

Whose image and superscription. It was a principle accepted 
by later Judaism, and probably by the Judaism of that day, that 
the right of coinage implies the right of levying taxes. See Edersh. 
L. and T. ii 385, and Maimonides, quoted by Plummer ad loc. 

25. Then render, &c. The claims of God and of Caesar are not 
mutually contradictory. St Paul (Rom xiii 1-7) and St Peter (1 Pet 
ii 13-17) counsel obedience to constituted authority. St Peter says 
Honour the King, when the king is Nero. Out of this may be said 
to have grown the noble structure of Dante s De Monarchia, 
and the doctrine of the parallel Divine authority of Church and 
Empire which underlies the Divina Commedia. The episode has 
been depicted by Titian in his well-known painting at Dresden. 
Cf. Jenner, Christ in Art, p. 130. 

27-40. THE QUESTION or THE RESURRECTION : Mat xxii 23-33, 
Mk xii 18-27. See the article of H. J. Wotherspoon in Hastings 
D.C.G., vol. ii, pp. 514 sqq., and that of E. R. Bernard in Hastings 
D.B., vol. iv, pp. 231 sqq. 

27 And there came to him certain of the Sadducees, they 
which say that there is no resurrection ; and they asked him, 
28 saying, faster, Moses wrote unto us, that if a man s brother 
die, having a wife, and he be childless, his brother should 
take the wife, and raise up seed unto his brother. 29 There 

1 Or, Teacher 
L. 17 

258 ST LUKE [XX 27, 28 

were therefore seven brethren : and the first took a wife, and 
died childless ; 30 and the second ; 31 and the third took 
her ; and likewise the seven also left no children, and died. 
32 Afterward the woman also died. 33 In the resurrection 
therefore whose wife of them shall she be ? for the seven had 
her to wife. 34 And Jesus said unto them, The sons of this 
^orld marry, and are given in marriage : 35 but they that 
are accounted worthy to attain to that ^orld, and the resur 
rection from the dead, neither marry, nor are given in mar 
riage : 36 for neither can they die any more : for they are 
equal unto the angels ; and are sons of God, being sons of the 
resurrection. 37 But that the dead are raised, even Moses 
shewed, in the place concerning the Bush, when he calleth the 
Lord the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the 
God of Jacob. 38 Now he is not the God of the dead, but of 
the living : for all live unto him. 39 And certain of the scribes 
answering said, 2 Master, thou hast well said. 40 For they 
durst not any more ask him any question. 

1 Or, age * Or, Teacher 

27. the Sadducees : who say that there is no resurrection, 
neither angel, nor spirit (Ac xxiii 8). There is only one hint of 
a previous clash with the Sadducees, and that in St Matthew alone 
(xvi 1), where they unite with the Pharisees in seeking a sign. 
The meaning of the word in the Hebrew is not absolutely certain. 
The early Christian Fathers connected it with Tsaddiq = " righteous," 
which is wrong. It is most probably derived from the name of the 
High Priest Zadok. a contemporary of David, whose descendants in 
Ezek xl 46 "come near to the Lord to minister to him." It was 
probably a nickname given by the Pharisees to the high priestly 
aristocracy and other wealthy Jews of high rank who preferred 
Hellenism to the study of the Law and the " Tradition of the 
Elders," a worldly ambition to " the Hope of Israel." Politically 
they were pro-Roman ; and though they claimed to keep to the 
letter of the Law, they sometimes preferred to apply the Roman 
Law rather than the Mosaic. Although they did not reject the 
Prophetic writings, they did not consider them important from the 
doctrinal point of view. That led them to reject the Messianic 
Hope and the eschatological ideas connected with it. In contem 
porary Jewish writings as well as in the Talmud they are therefore 
described as freethinkers and materialists. (Cf. Assumption of 
Moses, 7 ; Psalms of Solomon iv 7, 8, 22, vii 13.) (P. L.) 

28. Moses wrote. With the Sadducees more than with the 
Pharisees the Prophets and Writings came second to the Law. The 

XX28- 3 8] ST LUKE 259 

Law of Levirate which they here adduce (Deut xxv 5, 6) was one 
of the cases in which the Mosaic legislation was transitional 
regulating and restraining instead of abolishing a primitive pagan 
tradition. The Jewish consciousness gradually became aware of 
its unideal character. Rabbinism restricted its scope ; and by 
some Rabbis it was denounced as incestuous in its crude form of 
marriage with a brother s widow, and approved only when the 
former union had been nothing more than betrothal. Cf. Edersh. 
L. and T. ii 400. 

29. There were therefore seven brethren. An extreme case is 
intentionally chosen, in order to create an absurd situation. It is, 
however, not impossible that it may have occurred. Cf . the Jewish 
story of a man who married twelve widows, cited by Edersh., loc. cit., 
p. 400 note. 

33. In the resurrection therefore whose wife . . . ? It is a carnal 
relationship that is suggested, and the argument is so far valid that 
the Pharisaic ideas of the resurrection were largely carnal. 

34. Jesus said unto them. The other Synoptists make our Lord 
summarize this argument at the outset (Mk xii 24, Mat xxii 29) : 
meeting successively their ignorance (a) of Scripture and (b) of 
Divine Power. 

35. they that are accounted worthy. The argument here is 
directed against the second aspect of the Sadducees error their 
ignorance of the power of God, and of the consequent possibilities 
of human nature under the action of glorifying grace. Their 
argument is based on a misconception of the future life due to an 
impoverished idea of what God can do. At first sight this utterance 
seems to deny a universal resurrection (to life or to judgement, 
Jn v 29), but (a) the worthiness is relative to that world - 
the new, Messianic Age and (b) the resurrection spoken of here is 
/< vc/cpwv = from the dead (cf . Mk xii 25), not merely J/CK/DWV = of the 
dead. It is in this sense that St Paul expresses a humble hope that 
he may attain unto the resurrection from the dead (Phil iii 11). 

36. neither can they die any more. Hence there is no need for 

equal unto the angels : in immortality and in spirituality. 

37. even Moses shewed, &c. Ex iii 6. The whole passage was 
familiarly called The Bush. That there is a life beyond at least 
for those who have fellowship with God in this life is the teaching 
of the entire Old Testament. 

38. for all live unto him. (Does the dative mean for service 
to Him, or simply in relation to Him ?) The same thought in 
a more expanded form appears in Rom xiv 8 : For whether we 
live, we live unto the Lord ; or whether we die, we die unto the 
Lord : whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord s. To die 
as the Lord s is, as the instinct of the Psalmists realized (Pss xvi, 
xvii), to live and to live fully and joyously. 

Our Lord might have quoted here Ps xvi (as St Peter applies it, 


260 ST LUKE [XX 38-42 

in Ac ii 25 sqq., to His resurrection), but He deliberately confines 
Himself to the Pentateuch, which had the greater appeal to His 
questioners (see note on v. 28). 

The same argument is found in 4 Mace vii 19, xvi 25. The 
relation of those passages is difficult to determine, since the date 
of 4 Maccabees is uncertain. They may be simply echoes of our 
Lord s teaching here, or may represent a high-water mark of 
Rabbinic teaching. 

39. Master, thou hast well said : rather (with Edersheim) 
Beautifully said, Teacher. The exclamation of a Pharisaic Scribe, 
zealous for the Resurrection. On the Rabbinic arguments for the 
Resurrection, see Edersh. L. and T. ii 398-403. Some of these 
seem to reflect our Lord s teaching ; e. g. those of Gamaliel II, son 
of St Paul s preceptor, and co-disciple of the future Apostle (loc. cit., 
p. 403 and note). 

40. durst not. Matthew (xxii 34) picturesquely says He gagged 
or muzzled them. 

41-44. CHRIST S OWN QUESTION : Mat xxii 41-46, Mk xii 
35-37, cf. Edersh. ii 405, 406. Here comes, in the other Synoptists 
narratives (Mat xxii 34-40, Mk xii 28-34), the Scribe s question on 
the greatest commandment (put so Edersheim suggests by the 
same Scribe who uttered the exclamation of v. 39). Luke omits 
this because he has recorded a similar incident in x 35 sqq. (see 
notes there). 

The sequence in St Luke s narrative is simple. The atmosphere 
has been charged with approbation and good humour (v. 39) ; our 
Lord seizes the opportunity to put a question not so much to convict 
as to convince. Perchance He?can^win,.the Scribes even now to 
a deeper view of Himself. 

41 And he said unto them, How say they that the Christ 
is David s son ? 42 For David himself saith in the book of 

The Lord said unto my Lord, 
Sit thou on my right hand, 

43 Till I make thine enemies the footstool of thy feet. 
44 David therefore calleth him Lord, and how is he his son ? 

41. How say they (Matthew, say the scribes ). In what sense, 
and with what justification, is the Messiah traditionally styled son 
of David ? The title had been applied to Jesus Himself a few days 
before, xviii 39, at Jericho : and cf. Mat xxi 9, Hosanna to the 
son of David ! on Palm Sunday. 

42. for David himself saith. Controversy has been bitter on 
this point ; as to whether our Lord here finally decides the question 
of the authorship of Ps ex. Most devout and intelligent readers 
would now answer in the negative. He is arguing on the premisses 

XX 43-47] ST LUKE 261 

generally accepted by His audience, His aim being to make His 
immediate hearers think. 

in the book of Psalms: Ps ex 1. Matthew and Mark do not 
indicate the book, but imply that it is inspired Scripture. (Mat 
xxii 41, Mk xii 35.) 

44. David therefore calleth him Lord. If David gives the Messiah 
such extraordinary honour as the Psalmist s language implies, in 
what sense can He be David s son ? The fact that the Psalm was 
ascribed to David gives extra emphasis to the question : but the 
phrase in any Psalmist s mouth might reasonably give rise to the 
problem. The argument does not lose all its point if David is not 
the author ; it does, however, if the Psalm is not Messianic. 

45-47. WARNING AGAINST THE SCRIBES. Here Luke is corro 
borated by Mark (xii 38-40), who devotes but three verses to this 
warning. Matthew has an entire chapter, in which he collects more 
items of warning against Scribes and Pharisees (xxiii 1-12), 
follows them up by a series of Woes denounced on Scribes and 
Pharisees, hypocrites (xxiii 13-33), and rounds all off (xxiii 34-39) 
with the prediction of vengeance and the lament over Jerusalem 
given by Luke in chs xi and xiii. Though an open denunciation 
seems very appropriate and dramatic at this point, just as our Lord 
is bidding farewell to the Temple for ever, yet the phenomena of 
the first Gospel make it practically certain that Matthew has here 
grouped a number of scattered sayings, truly associated in idea if 
not in chronology. In doing so he has emphasized many important 

Evidently Luke knew that there was a denunciation here else 
the passage would be an idle doublet. But, with Mark, he believed 
it to have been addressed primarily to the disciples, though (like 
Matthew) in the hearing of the crowd (v. 45). 

45 And in the hearing of all the people he said unto his 
disciples, 46 Beware of the scribes, which desire to walk in 
long robes, and love salutations in the marketplaces, and 
chief seats in the synagogues, and chief places at feasts ; 
47 which devour widows houses, and for a pretence make 
long prayers : these shall receive greater condemnation. 

46. Beware of the scribes, &c. This is, in the main, a repetition 
of the Woe upon the Pharisees of Lk xi 43. The new element 
is the desire to walk in long robes, from Mk xii 38. 

47. which devour widows houses. Again from the Marcan source 
(Mk xii 40). Not in Matthew nor in Lk xi. 

for a pretence make long prayers. So Mark here. Matthew (xxiii 5) 
has all their works they do for to be seen of men. The real parallel 
to this he has relegated to the Sermon on the Mount (Mat vi 5, 7). 

262 ST LUKE [XXI 1-38 

XXI 1-4. THE WIDOW S OFFERING (Mk xii 41-44). This last 
incident in the Temple (not recorded by Matthew) forms a significant 
contrast to the preceding paragraph : the poor widow type of the 
victims of scribal rapacity (v. 47), in her humility (contr. v. 46), 
the unobtrusiveness of her devotions (contr. v. 47), and the genero 
sity of her almsgiving. For the scene, see Edersh. L. and T. ii 
387-389. In Luke it follows immediately ; in Mark, apparently, 
after an interval. 

XXI And he looked up, x and saw the rich men that were 
casting their gifts into the treasury. 2 And he saw a certain 
poor widow casting in thither two mites. 3 And he said, Of 
a truth I say unto you, This poor widow cast in more than they 
all : 4 for all these did of their superfluity cast in unto the 
gifts : but she of her want did cast in all the living that she 

1 Or, and saw them that . . . treasury, and they were rich. 

1. looked up : explained by Mk xii 41, He sat down over 
against the treasury. Wearied out with a long day s controversy, 
He finds rest and refreshment in this sight during His last moments 
within the precincts. 

2. two mites : XfTTTa cf. xii 59 the very smallest coin. Together, 
says Mark, they make up a quadrans (the fourth part of a Roman as). 
This was the smallest sum allowed : it was at the same time the 
largest the widow could offer. And she had absolutely nothing left 
till she should have earned more. C. G. Montefiore quotes a Jewish 
Targum on Lev iii 5, A woman brought a handful of meal to the 
altar as her sacrifice. The priest sneered at it. But in a dream it 
was said to him, Account not her gift as small : account it rather 
as if she had offered herself. (Beginnings of Christianity, p. 76.) 

4. of her want : va-rep-rj/jia like the word for superfluity - 
a Pauline term, cf . 2 Cor viii 12, xi 9, and Phil iv 12. For St Luke s 
Paulinisms see Introd., p. xxix. 

(c) XXI 5-38 The Great Prophecy of the End (Mat xxiv, 

Mk xiii) 

Cf . the excellent article Parousia in Hastings D. B. This 
prophecy, recorded in the Synoptists as delivered on one of the days 
in Holy Week from the slope of Olivet (Mat xxiv 3, Mk xiii 3), has 
nothing exactly corresponding to it in the fourth Gospel ; but it is 
balanced, as it were, by the discourse in the Upper Room ( Jn xiv 
xvi) where a coming again is spoken of sometimes as a return of 
Jesus Himself (xiv 18, xvi 16), sometimes as a coming of the Holy 
Spirit (xiv 16, xv 26, xvi 7 sqq.). 

The records of the first and second Gospels follow very closely 

XXI 5-38] ST LUKE 263 

the same lines, and are marked by a number of figurative and 
mysterious expressions derived, as recent research has shown, from 
current Jewish eschatology (cf., e. g., abomination of desolation. 
Mat xxiv 15, Mk xiii 14). St Matthew is the fuller, and the initial 
question put in his Gospel (xxiv 3) adds to the subject of the 
destruction of Jerusalem (Mark) that of the end of the world : thus 
giving point to Godet s conjecture (Engl. Tr. ii 259) that Matthew 
may, here as elsewhere, have combined two different discourses. 
St Luke s account, while it has close enough resemblances to the 
other two to justify us in regarding it as the same discourse, diverges 
in certain important details, and is generally clearer and more 
intelligible to the Gentile mind. 

For the abomination of desolation he substitutes Jerusalem 
compassed with armies (cf . xix 43) ; and the two subjects of the 
destruction of Jerusalem and the Second Advent (which seem 
inextricably mingled in the first and second) are in the third Gospel 
clearly distinguished by the period (v. 24) described as the seasons 
of the Gentiles, while the Parousia or Advent itself receives but 
a passing mention, because a discourse on it has already been given 
in Lk xvii. 

Matthew (and to a less degree Mark) had over-combined two 
themes which come close in the perspective of prophecy judgement 
on the Jews and judgement of the whole world : Luke, either by 
inspired good sense, or with the help of other sources, more or less 
disentangles these two themes, but leaves the association still close. 

The criticism of this chapter has an important bearing on the 
date of the third Gospel. For the clear and explicit references to the 
overthrow of the city, corresponding so accurately with the facts 
of A. D. 70, are held by some to be evidence of a praedictio post 
eventum, justifying the inference that the Gospel took shape after 

A. D. 70. 

St Luke (it is said) obviously paraphrases the obscure ex 
pressions found in the earlier authority represented by Mark, and 
interprets them in terms of a Roman siege and capture. The 
question, however, is not foreclosed if we admit this, though many 
scholars would so regard it (see, e. g., V. H. Stanton, Gospels, ii 275). 
That he should paraphrase and interpret was inevitable from the 
point of view of his writing ; but do his words necessarily imply 
anything more than an insight into the inevitable consequences of 
the Jewish unrest which was already stirring for several years 
before the Roman invasion ? It has been pointed out by F. Blass 
(Evang. Secund. Luc. Praefatio, p. viii, Teubner 1897 ; Philol. Oosp. 
pp. 42, 43, Macmillan 1898) that Savonarola s prophecy delivered in 
1496 of the coming of Charles VIII to Florence, which happened in 
1517 (an indubitable prediction), is quite as explicit as this recorded 
by St Luke ; Dr Bigg, Wayside Sketches in Eccles. Hist. (1906), 
p. 114, has adduced an equally startling example in a prediction 
made in the fourteenth century by Piers Plowman (vi 169-190), 

264 ST LUKE [XXI 5-7 

fulfilled literally and in detail by Henry VIII in the sixteenth 

To sum up : St Luke (unless we suppose that Christ Himself 
duplicated this prediction in different terms) interprets the mys 
terious phrases of the first and second Gospels as a definite prediction 
of the siege and destruction of the city. The question is : was he 
able to do this because he saw Christ s words on the way to be so 
fulfilled, or because he knew that the fulfilment had already taken 
place ? According to the answer given to this question, the date 
of the Gospel will be A. D. c. 60-70 or c. 70-80. 


5 And as some spake of the temple, how it was adorned 
with goodly stones and offerings, he said, 6 As for these 
things which ye behold, the days will come, in which there 
shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not 
be thrown down. 7 And they asked him, saying, faster, 
when therefore shall these things be ? and what shall be the 
sign when these things are about to come to pass ? 8 And he 
said, Take heed that ye be not led astray : for many shall 
come in my name, saying, I am he ; and, The time is at hand : 
go ye not after them. 9 And when ye shall hear of wars and 
tumults, be not terrified : for these things must needs come 
to pass first ; but the end is not immediately. 

1 Or, Teacher 

6. one stone upon another. Cf . xix 44. 

7. they asked him. According to Mk xiii 3 it was the most 
intimate group, Peter, James, and John (cf. viii 51, ix 28) and 
Andrew. St Luke, who does not name them here, omits also the 
special place of the three in Gethsemane (Mat xxvi 37, Mk xiv 33). 
Such details he would have been unlikely to omit had he been 
reproducing the Marcan source as in the earlier chapters of the 
Ministry. These omissions corroborate other indications as to the 
special character of St Luke s Passion-Narrative. (See prelim, note 
on xix 28 xxiii 56.) 

when . . . shall these things be ? A simple question referring to 
the destruction of the Temple. Matthew adds, and what shall be 
the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world ? which suggests an 
identification in the disciples minds of that local catastrophe with 
the Parousia and the consummation of the age. If the two 
events were inextricably associated in their minds, we have in that 
fact a key to the confusion of the two which is so puzzling a feature 
of the Matthaean and Marcan accounts. The sign which corre 
sponds to Luke s shorter question is given clearly and decisively 

XXI 8-i2] ST LUKE 265 

in v. 20. The doom of the Temple is" assured when the Roman 
armies begin to compass the city. 

8. I am he ; and, The time is at hand. False Christs. St Paul 
in 2 Thess ii 1-12 expects a striking exhibition of Antichrist (the 
Man of Sin ) before the Parousia, which he perhaps at that time 
regarded as coincident with the coming fall of Jerusalem. The 
Antichrist and many deceivers of 2 Jn 7 (cf. 1 Jn iv 1, 3) 
belong mainly to the end of the century ; though some of the 
many referred to may be earlier. There are none such false 
Messiahs recorded by Josephus between A. D. 29 and 70. It is 
tempting to give this verse a longer reach and make it refer to the 
whole period before the Second Advent. Certainly the world of the 
twentieth century is full of delusive alternatives to Jesus Christ. 

9. wars and tumults : cf. w. 10, 11. Plummer quotes a strikingly 
parallel description from Tacitus, Hist, i 2, 1. 


10 Then said he unto them, Nation shall rise against 
nation, and kingdom against kingdom : 11 and there shall 
be great earthquakes, and in divers places famines and pesti 
lences ; and there shall be terrors and great signs from 
heaven. 12 But before all these things, they shall lay their 
hands on you, and shall persecute you, delivering you up to 
the synagogues and prisons, bringing you before kings and 
governors for my name s sake. 13 It shall turn unto you for 
a testimony. 14 Settle it therefore in your hearts, not to 
meditate beforehand how to answer : 15 for I will give you 
a mouth and wisdom, which all your adversaries shall not be 
able to withstand or to gainsay. 16 But ye shall be delivered 
up even by parents, and brethren, and kinsfolk, and friends ; 
and some of you 2 shall they cause to be put to death. 17 And 
ye shall be hated of all men for my name s sake. 18 And 
not a hair of your head shall perish. 19 In your patience ye 
shall win your 3 souls. 

1 Gr. you being brought. 2 Or, shall they put to death 3 Or, lives 

10. Nation shall rise against nation. See note on v. 9. There 
never was a period which so clearly answered to the description as 
that ushered in by the Declaration of War in 1914. Logically this 
section should refer to the lifetime of the disciples, and perhaps 
primarily it does : but history repeats itself Christ comes again 
and again for judgement (see below on w. 24, 28), and the signs 
of His coming repeat themselves accordingly. 

12. before all these things, i. e. in the near future. 

266 ST LUKE [XXI 12-19 

they shall lay their hands on you, tfcc. Abundant fulfilment is 
stated and implied in the Acts notably where St Luke s future 
companion in travel and co-evangelist made havock of the 
Church. Ac viii 3, ix 1, 2, 21. 

13. unto you, i. e. either of the truth of the prediction, or (on 
your behalf) to the world a witness of your loyalty, or of the truth 
of your message. 

for a testimony. Sanguis Martyrum semen ecclesiae. These 
words eis p-aprupLov are applied here with a different application 
from that of the parallel passages in the other Synoptists 
(Mat xxiv 14, Mk xiii 9), when it is unto them, as Sir John Hawkins 
points out (Oxf. Stud., p. 108). It is one of those passages which 
point either to the handing down of phrases by oral transmission 
(cf . note on xxiv 6) or to intermittent exactness on the Evange 
list s part in copying what he had before him. 

At this point Mk xiii 10 (followed by Mat xxi 14) has a reference 
to the preaching of the Gospel to all nations : a point which the 
universalist Luke could hardly have omitted if using Mark as he 
appears to have done, e. g. for chs iii-ix. 

14. not to meditate beforehand. The thought has already occurred 
in xii 11. See note there. 

15. shall not be able . . . to gainsay. Cf . Ac iv 13, 14, vi 10, ix 22. 

16. even by parents, and brethren, &c. Cf . xii 53. 

17. ye shall be hated : and so win the blessing of vi 22. The 
subject is more fully worked out in Jn xv 18-21. In the well-known 
passage of Tacitus (Ann. xv 44) which deals with the Neronian 
persecution in which St Paul was martyred, the Christians are said 
to be hated by the common people for their secret crimes (per 
flagitia invisos), and to have been convicted of hatred of the 
human race (in odio humani generis convicti). The first statement 
is doubtless true ; the second a false deduction from their inevitable 
aloofness from an intercourse saturated with paganism ; backed by 
the assumption that those who are hated will necessarily hate in 

18. not a hair of your head. A proverbial expression : there 
shall not the slightest touch of harm come to you. Cf. David s 
protest in 1 Sam xiv 45. In Dan iii 27 the phrase is used, of course, 
quite literally. This utterance is supplemented by xii 4, which 
spiritualizes the meaning of harm. Our Lord had just said (v. 16), 
Some of you shall they cause to be put to death ; this is no real 
contradiction, for even the killing of the body is not to be feared, 
for it brings no real hurt. 

19. In your patience. Equivalent to Mat xxiv 13, He that 
endureth to the end, the same shall be saved. Cf. St Clement of 
Rome on the martyrdom of St Paul (Ad Cor. v), By his example 
he pointed out the prize of patient endurance. 

ye shall win. The true winning or achieving of the soul is a 
thing of the future, dependent on our conduct. Cf. the saying of 

XXI 2o, 21] ST LUKE 267 

Keats that this life ought not to be called a Vale of Tears, but 
a Vale of Soul- making. 


20 But when ye see Jerusalem compassed with armies, 
then know that her desolation is at hand. 21 Then let them 
that are in Judaea flee unto the mountains ; and let them that 
are in the midst of her depart out ; and let not them that 
are in the country enter therein. 22 For these are days of 
vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled. 
23 Woe unto them that are with child and to them that give 
suck in those days ! for there shall be great distress upon the 
Hand, and wrath unto this people. 24 And they shall fall by 
the edge of the sword, and shall be led captive into all the 
nations : and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, 
until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled. 

1 Or, earth 

20. when ye see Jerusalem compassed, &c. The imperfect might 
almost be rendered beginning to be compassed. According to 
St Luke our Lord had already predicted, before His triumphal 
entry (xix 43), the siege which was to take place some forty years 
later. The language there is still more vivid than here. In terms 
drawn from the O.T. he had portrayed the customary Roman 
siege earthworks and palisades. 

Luke interprets here for Theophilus and his fellow- Gentiles the 
obscure phraseology from Dan ix 27, which Matthew and Mark 
have reproduced literally, retaining simply the word desolation. 
According to our view of the evidence, we shall say (a) that, writing 
after A. D. 70, he interprets in terms of accomplished history, or 
(6) that, writing probably between A. D. 60 and 70, he interprets 
hi terms of a clearly seen, though not yet completed, movement of 

For a fuller vindication of Luke s phraseology on this latter 
supposition, see Blass, Philol. Oosp. ch iv, esp. p. 46. It is just 
possible that our Lord enunciated the prediction in two ways, 
veiled and open, and that Luke, finding the open prediction in 
his source, omitted as unsuitable to Gentile ears the veiled prophecy 
which the more Palestinian Gospels have preserved. 

21. let them that are in the midst of her depart out. Eusebius, in 
the celebrated passage, H.E. iii 5, 3, says that the Christians in 
Jerusalem were commanded by a revelation, given before the war, 
to depart to a place called Pella, in (the north boundary of) Peraea, 
which they did in A. D. 68. We may, perhaps, with Godet, see in 
the mountains of this verse the mountainous plateau of Gilead. 

268 ST LUKE [XXi 2 i- 25 

let not them that are in the country enter therein. Many of the 
rural population, quite naturally, fled from the Roman invaders 
and sought refuge within the walls, and thus increased the miseries 
of the besieged and shared their doom. Josephus, B.J. IV ix 1 
and V x 1, shows how difficult it was, just before and during the 
siege, for any of those within to escape. 

22. days of vengeance. Prefigured in xi 51. Eusebius (H.E. ii 
23, 20) in a passage which, following Origen (Contra Celsum, i 47), 
he attributes to Josephus, says, These things happened to the Jews 
for vengeance (using the same word e/cSi /c^o-is used by St Luke here), 
because of their unjust murder of James the Just, the brother of 

that all things which are written, e. g. in such passages as Lev xxvi 
31-33, and esp. Deut xxviii 49-59, where are specified some of the 
worst horrors of the siege as described by Josephus. 

24. led captive into all the nations. Deut xxviii 64, Lev xxvi 33. 
This predicted scattering of the Jewish people has constituted 
them, through the centuries, a living fulfilment of prophecy, which 
no Zionist movement seems ever likely to obliterate. Yet the 
punishment of Israel has a limit, as the next verses make clear. 

until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled. Cf . Mk i 15, Eph i 10, 
and St Paul s phrase (Rom xi 25), Until the fulness of the Gentiles 
be come in (Moffatt, I.L.N.T., p. 281). The plural (/catpot) is used, 
says Godet, because different Gentile nations are to be called in 
succession. The Pauline parallel may help us to determine the most 
probable interpretation of the somewhat obscure phrase which we 
regard as meaning opportunities of grace, and of becoming the 
true Israel. The beginning of such seasons of the Gentiles is noted 
in Ac xi 18 ; the definite substitution of a Gentile mission for one 
exclusively Jewish in Ac xiii 46 sqq. In this sense the seasons 
would be already far advanced in the year A. D. 70. This verse is 
paralleled in the other Synoptic Gospels (Mat xxiv 14, Mk xiii 10) 
by the prediction of a preaching of the Gospel to all nations (see 
note on v. 13) which is apparently preliminary to the destruction of 
the city. But that passage and this have an obvious reference to the 
subsequent centuries of Christian history. Since A. D. 70 Jerusalem 
has been trampled down by Romans, Saracens, Turks, and 
Christian Crusaders, until in 1916 the Last Crusade treated her 
with a reverence and a gentleness unknown in more than thirty 
centuries of warfare. 

25-27. THE COMING OF THE SON OF MAN. (This is subsequent 
to the extinction of the Jewish State.) 

25 And there shall be signs in sun and moon and stars ; 
and upon the earth distress of nations, in perplexity for the 
roaring of the sea and the billows ; 26 men fainting for fear, 

1 Or, expiring 

XXI 25-28] ST LUKE 269 

and for expectation of the things which are coming on Hhe 
world : for the powers of the heavens shall be shaken. 27 And 
then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with 
power and great glory. 

1 Gr. the inhabited earth. 

25. signs in sun and moon and stars. The proverbially fixed 
and stable bodies shall fail of their fixity as may happen in the 
end of this earth by a clashing with some other planet. But the 
phrase is apocalyptic current coin, common in the prophets. Cf. 
Is xiii 10, &c. Eclipses, comets, and meteoric disturbances have 
thus up to our own times been regarded as typical or actually 
prognostic or symptomatic of startling changes in the world of 
mankind. The three hours darkness at the Crucifixion (xxiii 44) 
accompanied, according to the first Gospel, by an earthquake, gives 
definitely Christian authority for the conjunction of physical 
phenomena with spiritual crises in one case at least. 

the roaring of the sea. The Hebrews were not a nautical nation. 
The sea was not their friend and ally, as it has been to us. To the 
Seer of the Apocalypse sea will be abolished in the blessed future 
(Rev xxi 1). So in the O.T. prophets, the sea s roaring is typical 
of that which inspires terror ; cf . Is v 30. 

26. the powers of the heavens shall be shaken. So Matthew ; 
Mark has the powers that are in the heavens, which rather favours 
the traditional idea of the angelic powers presiding over planets and 
constellations : but of course no doctrine can be drawn from such 
an apocalyptic metaphor. The phrase is an adaptation of the 
eschatological passage, Is xxxiv 4. 

27. then shall they see the Son of man : cf . ix 26-27, where there 
is a puzzling combination of the near and far parallel to that of this 
chapter. The Son of Man s coming is there spoken of, as here, in 
terms borrowed from the current Jewish apocalyptic, and it is added 
that some of those present shall see the Kingdom of God before they 
taste of death. The latter prediction applies most naturally either 
(a) to the spread of the Gospel as recorded in the Acts, or (b) to the 
destruction of the Jewish polity. 

It is noticeable that all three Synoptists here pass from the second 
to the third person (not shall ye see ), which may imply that the 
immediate hearers will not be alive. 

coming in a cloud : cf . the angels saying at the Ascension, Ac i 11. 
In the parallel saying before the Sanhedrin given in Mat xxvi 64, 
Mk xiv 62, the form is Ye shall see the Son of man. . . . Not so 
in Lk xxii 69 (see note there). 

28-36. PRACTICAL APPLICATION. If v. 28 is attached to the 
preceding paragraph (as in R.V.), it brings back the second person, 
and implies that the hearers will witness the Parousia before their 

270 ST LUKE [XXI 28, 29 

If it may be taken rather as introductory to vv. 29 sqq. (though 
the formula and he spake, v. 29, is against this), we may take 
these things as referring back to v. 20 and the destruction of 
Jerusalem a return, in fact, to what Godet calls the principal 
topic of the discourse. 

To this corresponds the first Parable (vv. 29-33) illustrating a fixed 
event which can be recognized beforehand ; while the second 
Parable (vv. 34-36) no longer these things, but that day illus 
trates a sudden and unexpected event. This sequence and difference 
of tone is even clearer in Mat xxiv xxv, (a) xxiv 32-35, these 
things (with fixed sign), (6) xxiv 36 xxv 30, that day (with 
unexpected suddenness). 

28 But when these things begin to come to pass, look up, 
and lift up your heads ; because your redemption draweth 

28. your redemption draweth nigh. Referring perhaps primarily 
to (a) the stability and independence of the Christian Church, when 
A. D. 70 put a final end to Jewish persecution ; but also, more 
generally, to (6) successive Advents of Christ in history. As often 
as Christ comes throughout the ages, or in individual life, Christian 
hope can pierce through the darkness to the coming dawn. Most 
completely when He shall come finally to bring in the kingdom of 
righteousness and God shall be all in all. 

29-33. THE PARABLE OP THE FIG-TREE : Mat xxiv 32-35, 
Mk xiii 28-32. 

29 And he spake to them a parable : Behold the fig tree, 
and all the trees : 30 when they now shoot forth, ye see it 
and know of your own selves that the summer is now nigh. 
31 Even so ye also, when ye see these things coming to pass, 
know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh. 32 Verily I say 
unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till all things 
be accomplished. 33 Heaven and earth shall pass away : 
but my words shall not pass away. 

29. the fig tree, and all the trees. A miscellaneous orchard ; 
cf . xiii 6. The suggestion that Luke adds all the trees for the 
benefit of those countries where figs are unknown would scarcely 
apply to the Mediterranean world as he knew it. As our Lord 
spoke the fig-trees in general were showing signs of fruit (as they 
did from the middle of March), but normally the leaves would come 
later. (Hence the surprise expressed in Mat xxi 18 sqq., Mk xi 
12 sqq.) 

XXI 3i-3S] ST LUKE 271 

31. these things (ravra), the nearer events, in contrast to that 
day (77 y/jLepa Kivr)) of v. 34, cf. preliminary note on vv. 28-36. 

32. This generation shall not pass away. Unless we make 
a fresh start at v. 28 (see note), St Luke would seem here to be 
inconsistent with himself in v. 24. It may possibly be that Luke 
originally wrote, as Marcion read, Heaven and earth shall not pass 
away unless all be fulfilled. See Blass, Philol. Gosp., p. 50. Two 
Latin codices have variants here, and one of them, i, reads 
caelum istud instead of this generation. 

Mk xiii 32 and Mat xxiv 36 append immediately to this saying 
the significant limitation, Of that day or that hour knoweth no 
one, not even the angels in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father ; 
which St Luke parallels in Ac i 7, the times or seasons, which the 
Father hath set within his own authority. 

34-36. WARNING TO BE BEADY. This section differs largely in 
language from Mark and Matthew. The latter introduces the refer 
ence to Noah of Lk xvii 26, 27, the taken and left of Lk xvii 
35, 36, and the burglar and unfaithful steward of Lk xii. St Luke s 
phraseology is strongly Pauline reminiscent of 1 Thess v 3 and 
the Evangelist s choice of actual words and phrases may have been 
coloured (like his Gospel of the Passion in general) by his association 
with St Paul (cf . Hawkins, Oxf. Stud., p. 87) ; though the language 
of the Epistle (ib. 135 sqq.) might on the other hand, have been 
grounded on the record which was afterwards embodied in the Gospel. 

34 But take heed to yourselves, lest haply your hearts be 
overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of 
this life, and that day come on you suddenly as a snare : 
35 for so shall it come upon all them that dwell on the face of 
all the earth. 36 But watch ye at every season, making 
supplication, that ye may prevail to escape all these things 
that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man. 

34. surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares. Gross sensual 
pleasures such as riches can easily procure, and the worldly 
anxieties of those who lack riches these (viii 14) are the thorns that 
choke the good seed, so that it brings no fruit to perfection. The 
word rendered surfeiting here KpanrdXr], Lat. crapula means the 
nausea that follows a debauch. Here only in Biblical Greek 

that day, i. e. of the Parousia or Second Coming. Similar to the 
O.T. apocalyptic expression, the Day, Day of the Lord. So 
x 12 and xvii 31. 

as a snare : language reminiscent of Is xxiv 17. 

35. all them that dwell : lit. that sit. The figure is that of a 
net spread over a field where unsuspecting birds are resting (Godet). 

272 ST LUKE [XXI 37 -XXlll 53 

87-38. FAREWELL TO THE TEMPLE. These words take up and 
expand xix 47, and form a farewell summary of the last teachings 
in the Temple, if we take St Luke s Gospel as it stands. They look 
back on the Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday in Holy Week. 

Godet, however, in his introductory note to ch xxii (ii, p. 277) 
places the incident of the Greeks (Jn xii 20-36) on the next day, 
Wednesday. If we prefix to this the Pericope Adulterae (see next 
note below), it more naturally explains the words, v. 37, Every day 
he was teaching in the temple : which will then have a forward 
as well as a backward reference. 

Christ s final retirement would then take place on the Wednesday 
evening concomitantly with, or just before, Judas s compact with 
the priests and would be that alluded to in Jn xii 36b, These 
things spake Jesus, and he departed and hid himself from them. 

37 And every day he was teaching in the temple ; and 
every night he went out, and lodged in the mount that is 
called the mount of Olives. 38 And all the people came early 
in the morning to him in the temple, to hear him. 

38. Here some MSS (the Ferrar Group ) insert the passage 
about the Woman taken in Adultery, which is by scholars voted 
out of place in Jn viii, and is also omitted there by all the earliest 
MSS. Blass regards it as Lucan, and so does McLachlan (St Luke, 
Evang. and Hist., 1912). The entire narrative/ he says, is in 
disputably Lucan in vocabulary and in spirit (op. cit., p. 101). 
See also Introd., p. xxv. 

If we insert it here and it would add one more to the gems of 
this Gospel of Womanhood and Gospel of the Sinner we 
should probably omit Lk xxi 38 and Jn vii 53 viii 1 as due to 
scribal dittography. (So F. Blass, Evangelium Secundum Lucam, 
Praef., pp. 46-50.) It would then run : and every night he went out 
and lodged in the mount of Olives. And early in the morning he came 
again into the temple, and all the people came unto him . . . neither do 
I condemn thee : go thy way ; from henceforth sin no more. 

(2) XXII 1-53 From the Betrayal to the Arrest 

Here, with the doings of the Wednesday in Holy Week, to which 
(see note on xxi 37) some would add the final appearance in the 
Temple, we reach a further stage of the preliminaries of the Passion. 

Between the mention of the Jewish leaders conspiracy (cf. 
xxii 1, 2) and the specification of Judas s treachery (xxii 3 sqq.), 
Matthew and Mark place the record of the Feast in Simon s House 
and the Anointing at Bethany. The sight of the wasted money 
seems for them to have been the final strain on the purse-bearer s 
patience. Luke omits this incident, as he omitted the Blasting of 
the Fig-tree (cf. note on xx 1 xxi 4), because he has already 

XXII i -3] ST LUKE 273 

recorded a similar incident with a like lesson (see vii 37 sqq. and 

(a) XXII 1-6 The Betrayal 

XXII Now the feast of unleavened bread drew nigh, 
which is called the Passover. 2 And the chief priests and the 
scribes sought how they might put him to death ; for they 
feared the people. 3 And Satan entered into Judas who was 
called Iscariot, being of the number of the twelve. 4 And 
he went away, and communed with the chief priests and 
captains, how he might deliver him unto them. 5 And they 
were glad, and covenanted to give him money. 6 And he 
consented, and sought opportunity to deliver him unto them 
r \n the absence of the multitude. 

1 Or, without tumult 

2. the chief priests and the scribes. Mat xxvi 3 speaks of a meeting 
of the chief priests and elders of the people in the palace of 
Caiaphas. This is what Josephus and the Talmud call the Priestly 
Council (Edersh. L. and T. ii 476). 

they feared the people. They said, Not during the feast, lest 
a tumult arise among the people (Mat xxvi 5). They were afraid 
of a rising, and of consequent reprisals from Pilate in which they 
themselves might have been involved. Cf. the fear expressed in 
Jn xi 48. The verbs sought, feared, are in the imperfect tense, 
implying that they were constantly on the watch to find some way 
of putting Him to death, and in constant fear of the populace. 

3. Satan entered into Judas who was called Iscariot. Judas, son 
of Simon (Jn xiii 2), a man of Kerioth in Judah (Jos xv 25), unique 
among the Twelve as a southerner, the rest apparently being 
Galileans. In the lists of Matthew and Mark he is paired with 
Simon the Cananean or Zealot, and may have shared something 
of the latter s patriotic fire, as well as the illusions common to the 
Twelve about the Messianic kingdom. That he should have been 
chosen purser and almoner implies gifts and capacity, especially 
as there was an ex-custom house officer among the band in Matthew. 
Satan entered is peculiar to Luke here. St John (xiii 2) says, of the 
Last Supper, the devil having already put into the heart, &c., but 
the entry of Satan he reserves for a later moment in the feast 
(xiii 27). John also records the premonition at the height of the 
Galilean ministry (vi 70) : Did I not choose you the twelve, and 
one of you is a devil ? All three Synoptists mention his treachery 
by anticipation when they give their lists of the Twelve. Matthew 
and Mark conjoin their account of the betrayal with that of Simon s 
feast, placing the latter out of its chronological order. John alone 

L. 18 

274 ST LUKE [XXII 3-5 

names Judas as voicing the protest there, with the significant 
comment (xii 6), not because he cared for the poor ; but because 
he was a thief, and having the bag took away what was put therein. 
Edersheim (L. and T. ii 471^78) draws a most graphic and convincing 
picture of the traitor Apostle, whose alienation from the Master and 
degradation of character he dates from Jn vi 70. 

4. the chief priests and captains. As the matter concerned an 
arrest, the Priestly Council had summoned the officers of the Levite 

how he might deliver him. This word deliver is a pivot- word 
of the predictions of the Passion (cf . xviii 32). It makes the Saviour 
as it were a mere chattel sold for the price of the wer-geld of 
a slave gored by an ox (Ex xxi 32, Mat xxvi 15). As Papini remarks 
(pp. 414 sqq.), dozens of theories have been brought forward to 
explain Judas s treachery some of them exalting him into a hero 
but it still remains a mystery, like the Atonement, to which this 
mercantile transaction is subsidiary. 

The cause to which he had attached himself was clearly a losing 
cause. Is it not better to curry favour with the winning side, even 
at the last moment ? And if he can win a few pieces of silver in 
addition, so much the better. There may have been a mixture of 
motives, and it would be rash perhaps to exclude altogether the 
desire to force His Master s hand, and make Him demonstrate His 
Messiahship. Cf. the striking imaginative picture in a recent book 
entitled By an Unknown Disciple. 

5. And they were glad. Judas s offer gave them the opportunity 
of a swifter blow before the Feast instead of after and so of 
fulfilling, all unwittingly, the decrees of destiny. He would conduct 
them to the arrest at a time when there was no risk of a disturbance 
or of a rescue. 

covenanted to give him money : lit. silver. So Mark ; Matthew 
alone specifies thirty pieces of silver, and later on (xxvii 9) quotes 
Zech xi 12, 13, ascribing it to Jeremiah. The sum would be 
between 4 and 5 in our money. 

(b) 7-38 The Last Supper. Mat xxvi 17 sqq., Mk xiv 12 sqq., 

Jn xiii 1 sqq. 
Edersh. L. and T. ii 479-512. Thursday in Holy Week. 


7 And the day of unleavened bread came, on which the 
passover must be sacrificed. 8 And he sent Peter and John, 
saying, Go and make ready for us the passover, that we may 
eat. 9 And they said unto him, Where wilt thou that we 
make ready ? 10 And he said unto them, Behold, when ye 
are entered into the city, there shall meet you a man bearing 

XXII 7-n] ST LUKE 275 

a pitcher of water ; follow him into the house whereinto he 
goeth. 11 And ye shall say unto the goodman of the house, 
The faster saith unto thee, Where is the guest-chamber, 
where I shall eat the passover with my disciples ? 12 And he 
will shew you a large upper room furnished : there make 
ready. 13 And they went, and found as he had said unto 
them : and they made ready the passover. 

1 Or, Teacher 

7. the, day of unleavened bread. The Feast of Mazzoth or Un 
leavened Bread was by this time identified with the Passover, which 
it really followed. The day mentioned here would be the 14th 
Nisan Passover-eve, and probably April 17, A. D. 29. The Jewish 
day began at 6 p.m., i. e. at sunset. 

on which the passover must be sacrificed. The lamb, set apart 
six days before, must be slain (Ex xii 6) by the head of the family 
or group that were to eat it, in the Temple, the Priest catching the 
blood in a bowl and pouring it out at the foot of the altar. It is 
not clear whether a lamb was eaten at the Last Supper. Christ and 
His disciples being excommunicate would hardly have facilities 
given them. 

8. Peter and John. Named by St Luke only. It must be the 
two most intimate as the preparations must be kept secret from 
Judas, who must not intervene before the hour had come. This 
special mention of St Peter (of. his prominence also in Ac i xv) and 
the omission of the great rebuke after his confession at Caesarea 
Philippi (ix 20) hardly bear out the Tubingen theory that the 
Evangelist had an animosity against Peter. 

9. Where wilt thou . . . ? In Matthew and Mark this question 
addressed by the whole body of the disciples opens the episode. 

10. a man bearing a pitcher of water. Papini suggests that it was 
to be the first chance man. Any man who possessed a male slave 
would be sure to have also a large upper room ; and none could 
refuse such a request now that Jesus was so prominent and popular 
at Jerusalem. Others think this was a preconceived signal with 
a friend : cf. note on v. 12. In any case the water-carrier is 
distinguished in v. 11 from the master of the house. 

11. The Master saith . . . These words, and the statement of v.12, 
surely point to a previous arrangement with some trusted friend of 
Jesus. There is no need to posit a miracle where common pre 
cautions would accomplish all that was needed ; though Godet sees 
in these verses a new proof of the supernatural knowledge of Jesus. 

the guest-chamber. KaraXv^a the same word which was trans 
lated inn in ii 7, where there was no room for His nativity. 
It would refer more naturally to a ground-floor room a hall 
opening into the court (Edersh. L. and T. ii 483) more humbly 
furnished than the upper chamber. 


276 ST LUKE [XXil 11-20 

They should ask the good man for a room of some sort, and 
he would offer them his best. 

12. a large upper room. This room became famous, not only 
for the momentous ceremony about to be performed in it, but as 
the nursery of the Church of Christ : for there is every reason to 
suppose that it is identical with the Upper Room of the Acts, 
and was in the house of the mother of St Mark. 

With the short break of four years (A.D. 66-70), when the Jewish 
Christians retired to Pella, it must have been in continuous use up 
to Hadrian s time, A.D. 130 ; and Epiphanius records that when 
that emperor razed practically the whole city to the ground, the 
little Church of God on the site of the Upper Room was among 
the few buildings left standing. The traditional site still shown in 
Jerusalem may therefore well be the real site (cf. Sanday, Sacr. 
Sites, pp. 80-82). 

The Passion proper may be said to begin here ; and here Sir John 
Hawkins (Oxf. Stud., pp. 76-94) begins his Passion-Narrative statis 
tics. See notes on xix 28 and xxiii 36. He carries on the Passion 
Narrative, however, to cover the visit of the Women to the Tomb ; 
altogether xxii 14 xxiv 10. It is observable that the tokens of 
free handling of the Marcan source are most concentrated here 
just where St Paul s preaching and teaching covers the ground 
the Last Supper, 1 Cor xi 17-34 ; Christ crucified, 1 Cor i 17, 23, 
ii 2 ; Resurrection, 1 Cor xv 4 sqq., Rom i 4, Eph i 19 sqq. 

14 And when the hour was come, he sat down, and the 
apostles with him. 15 And he said unto them, With desire 
I have desired to eat this passover with you before I suffer : 
16 for I say unto you, I will not eat it, until it be fulfilled in 
the kingdom of God. 17 And he received a cup, and when 
he had given thanks, he said, Take this, and divide it among 
yourselves : 18 for I say unto you, I will not drink from 
henceforth of the fruit of the vine, until the kingdom of God 
shall come. 19 And he took ^read, and when he had given 
thanks, he brake it, and gave to them, saying, This is my 
body 2 which is given for you : this do in remembrance of me. 
20 And the cup in like manner after supper, saying, This cup 
is the new 3 covenant in my blood, even that which is poured 
out for you. 

1 Or, a loaf 

- Some ancient authorities omit which is given for you . . . which is poured 
out for you. 3 Or, testament 

XXII i 4 -i7] ST LUKE 277 

14. when the hour was come, i. e. after sunset, when the new 
Jewish day began between the evenings (Ex xii 6, R.V. marg.). 

and the apostles with him. Mark, with the twelve : Matthew, 
the twelve disciples. The traditional representation of thirteen 
at the table is therefore the true one. The owner of the house may 
presumably have been in attendance, and the son of the house, 
St Mark. But it seems as though not even the Blessed Virgin was 
present. This scene has been a favourite subject of painters from 
Duccio and Giotto onwards. Next to the crucifixion, says 
Mrs Jameson (Sacr. and Leg. Art, p. 270), there is no subject so ... 
consecrated in Art as the Last Supper. The earliest representation 
with which she is acquainted is Byzantine of the eighth century. 
Fra Angelico has two motifs : (a) the detection of Judas, and 
(6) the Eucharist, wherein the Apostles kneel. The subject has been 
finely treated by Rafael and Andrea del Sarto ; but the best known 
and probably the noblest attempt is that by Leonardo da Vinci in 
the refectory of S. Maria delle Grazie at Milan (reproduced by P. L. W) 
which seems to depict the moment of v. 21. See also Jameson, Hist, 
of O.L., vol. ii, pp. 18-23 ; Jenner, Christian Art, pp. 102, 119. 

15. With desire I have desired. This and the phrase translated 
before I suffer are intensely Hebrew in form, and would seem to 
come from an eyewitness. The sentence itself is ambiguous : it 
may mean I longed to eat this which is to be our passover with 
you, as I am doing, or possibly I longed to eat the normal Jewish 
passover with you ; but as that will be impossible owing to my 
coming arrest, I make this meal take its place. The second inter 
pretation would bear out the impression left by the fourth Gospel, 
that this did not coincide with the Jewish Passover, but preceded it. 

16. until it be fulfilled : cf. v. 18. Did their hopes of a proximate 
Messianic Banquet (cf . xiv 15) revive ? Was the broiled fish 
of xxiv 42 on Easter evening symbolic of that banquet ? 

17. he received a cup : cf . v. 20. St Luke alone mentions two 
cups, and there is some little doubt as to which is the Eucharistic 
one if indeed it is not the same cup mentioned, by confusion, twice 
over. The doubt arises because (a) the Take this (cf . Matthew s 
Drink ye all of it ) is attached only to the first cup, and the new 
covenant in my blood to the second ; (6) because in two places 
(1 Cor x 16, 21) St Paul mentions the cup before the bread, as 
does also the Didache (end of first century ?) ; while in St Paul s 
formal account of the institution (1 Cor xi 23) the bread comes 
first. The question is further complicated because there are four or 
five cups at different points in the Jewish Paschal Supper, and it is 
not certain (a) how far our Lord followed the tradition, or (6) if He 
did, with which of the cups the two of Luke and the one of Matthew 
and Mark are to be identified. 

when he had given thanks : evx a P ia " r W a > the word whence our 
Eucharist comes. 

Take this, and divide it among yourselves. These words, combined 

278 ST LUKE [XXII 18, 19 

with those that immediately follow (v. 18), / will not drink, <fcc., seem 
to imply that our Lord did not Himself drink of the Eucharistic 
cup (whether it was this, or the cup of v. 20). He did not need to 
drink of that cup His own Blood as the celebrant-disciple needs. 
But Matthew and Mark place the saying I will not drink, &c. 
after that consecration. 

19. he took bread. There was always something solemn and 
quasi-eucharistic about the formal distribution of bread, the staff 
of life, by the head of a family. Our Lord performed this function 
day by day for His disciples, and His gestures in the act became 
very familiar to them (cf . xxiv 30, 35). A specially solemn instance, 
which the fourth Gospel interprets as a sort of prefiguring of the 
Eucharist ( Jn vi), occurred in the Feeding of the Five Thousand (ix 16). 

Ramsay (Recent Discovery, p. 312) notes the same succession of 
verbs in Ac xxvii 35, Paul standing among the great multitude 
almost all Pagan, treated the meal as though it were a celebration 
of the Eucharist. This was certainly not a real Eucharist ; but 
it may be described as one of a number of analogies Luke likes to 
draw between Paul and his Master. 

This is my body. Matthew, Take, eat, this is my body ; 
Mark,- Take ye ; this is my body. The words which follow, from 
which is given to the end of v. 20, poured out for you are omitted 
by Codex Bezae (D) and certain cursive MSS, while the Curetonian 
Syriac Version omits the whole of v. 20. On this ground, and 
because the omitted words so closely resemble St Paul s in 1 Cor xi 
23-25, and might easily have been supplied by a scribe from that 
place, Westcott and Hort marked the passage as doubtful. The 
question, however, cannot be said to be decided ; and the many 
other Pauline touches in which this part of the Gospel abounds 
certainly diminish the argument in favour of an interpolation. On 
the importance of Codex Bezae see Introd., p. xlii. 

As to what our Lord actually said and did at His institution of 
the Holy Eucharist, we do well to remind ourselves that, of written 
records, St Paul s is the earliest we have, and dates within thirty 
years of the event. 

this do. The sacrificial interpretation of these words can 
perhaps scarcely be maintained, though Troteiv does certainly bear 
sometimes the sense of offering up. But when we add the 
memorial, and the blood of the covenant (in Mark and Matthew 
not disputed), and read these indications in the light of both the 
O.T. and the early Christian Liturgies, the sacrificial aspect 
emerges clearly. 

in remembrance of me : or for my memorial as a reminder 
to your children, to the world, the angels, and God. It has often 
been pointed out that dva/Aj/Tjo-ts in Biblical Greek means normally 
a memorial before God ; cf . Lev xxiv 7, Heb x 3. But we cannot 
rule out the remembrance of Christ s redemptive work among 
ourselves as part, at any rate, of its meaning here. 

XXII 2o-2 5 ] ST LUKE 279 

20. the cup . . . after supper. So 1 Cor xi 25. 

the new covenant in my blood : referring (a) to the blood of the 
Old Covenant (Ex xxiv 8), that blood which is the life (Lev xvii 
11, 14), and signifies a life set free rather than death as such and 
(6) to the prophetic promises of a New Covenant (Jer xxxi 31, xxxii 
40 ; cf. Ezek xxxiv 25, xxxvii 26). This momentous verse has 
given the name New Testament to the Christian Scriptures. 

21-23. THETBAITOR: Mat xxvi 21-25, Mk xiv 18-21, Jn xiii 

21 But behold, the hand of him that betrayeth me is with 
me on the table. 22 For the Son of man indeed goeth, as it 
hath been determined : but woe unto that man through whom 
he is betrayed ! 23 And they began to question among them 
selves, which of them it was that should do this thing. 

21. the hand of him that betrayeth me . . . The greater the 
spiritual height attained the more obvious to the Lord s unique 
insight becomes the incongruity of the traitor s presence. Christ 
sees through him, but will not betray him. 

22. woe unto that man. Cf. xvii 1. These solemn words are in 
all three Synoptists, and Matthew and Mark add good were it for 
that man if he had not been born. The incident is given much 
more fully by them, with the dramatic Lord, is it I ? Luke surely 
cannot have seen the second Gospel here ? The fourth Gospel has 
still more details, with every mark of an eyewitness. 

24-30. THE LESSON OF HUMILITY. Because he (and he alone) 
has recorded this incident, it was unnecessary for St Luke to 
narrate the Request of the Sons of Zebedee (Mat xx). On the other 
hand it is noteworthy that this mention of strife dovetails into 
St John s episode of the Feet- washing ; which is just an acted 
edition of v. 27 (see below), and may have accompanied the words 
given there. If so, the section should probably have come earlier, 
before v. 17, so that the contention may have been about the 
order of sitting at the table who should sit on His right hand 
and His left. 

It is not clear, however, where the Institution should be inserted 
in the Johannine account. St Luke may have preserved better the 
sequence : w. 28 sqq. are strangely parallel in idea with Jn xiv 1 sqq. 

24 And there arose also a contention among them, which 
of them is accounted to be ^eatest. 25 And he said unto 
them, The kings of the Gentiles have lordship over them ; 
and they that have authority over them are called Benefactors. 

1 Gr. greater. 

280 ST LUKE [XXll 25-31 

26 But ye shall not be so : but he that is the greater among 
you, let him become as the younger ; and he that is chief, 
as he that doth serve. 27 For whether is greater, he that 
^itteth at meat, or he that serveth ? is not he that J sitteth 
at meat ? but I am in the midst of you as he that serveth. 
28 But ye are they which have continued with me in my 
temptations ; 29 and 2 I appoint unto you a kingdom, even 
as my Father appointed unto me, 30 that ye may eat and 
drink at my table in my kingdom ; and ye shall sit on thrones 
judging the twelve tribes of Israel. 

1 Gr. reclineth. 

2 Or, / appoint unto you, even as my Father appointed unto me a kingdom, that ye 
may eat and drink &c. 

25. Benefactors. There are over 100 instances of this word 
in extant inscriptions, applied to princes and other eminent men. 
Deissmann (op. cit., p. 248) gives as an instance a monument to 
Gaius Stertinius Xenophon, body-physician to the Emperor 
Claudius, whom he afterwards poisoned ! 

27. he that sitteth at meat, or he that serveth. This is one of the 
instances noticed by P. W. Schmiedel (Encycl. Bibl., art. Gospels, 
p. 1794), in which the word in the third Gospel is paralleled by an act 
in the fourth (cf. on xxii 32, xxiii 46). Jn xiii 1-5 pictures our 
Lord as girding Himself with a towel, slave fashion, and washing 
the feet of His sitting disciples : St Luke records the words I am 
in the. midst of you as he that serveth. 

28, 29. Ye are they . . . I appoint unto you a kingdom. Cf. 
Jn xiv 1,2, Let not your heart be troubled ... In my Father s 
house are many mansions ... I go and prepare a place for you. 

sit on thrones judging, &c. Cf . 1 Cor vi 2. 


31 Simon, Simon, behold, Satan J asked to have you, that 
he might sift you as wheat : 32 But I made supplication for 
thee, that thy faith fail not : and do thou, when once thou 
hast turned again, stablish thy brethren. 33 And he said 
unto him, Lord, with thee I am ready to go both to prison 
and to death. 34 And he said, I tell thee, Peter, the cock 
shall not crow this day, until thou shalt thrice deny that thou 
knowest me. 

1 Or, obtained you by asking 

31. Simon, Simon : cf . x 41, Martha, Martha. Peter s question 
and protest in Jn xiii 36, 37, explains this address to the Apostle. 

XXII 31-36] ST LUKE 281 

Satan asked to have you. Rather successfully asked for you - 
obtained you by asking. As in Job i 11, 12, Satan is pictured as 
gaining his point, that he may test the soul. They have one and 
all to face the test of the betrayal, arrest, condemnation, crucifixion : 
but the Master s intercession had saved Simon Peter from summary 
and complete failure. 

sift you emphasizes the testing process, separating the wheat 
from the chaff : a process with which, as the Baptist had predicted 
(iii 17), Christ Himself would be identified. Winnowing is one of 
the most picturesque and characteristic Palestinian activities to-day. 

32. / made supplication for thee. Here, as in v. 27, St Luke 
records the word, St John (xvii 15) the act. For thee, though the 
you is plural. Of all who were to be tempted, St Peter, the 
leader, was in some ways most likely to fall, and his fall would be 
most disastrous. Here our Lord gives us an example of intercession 
for individuals by name. 

fail not. A medical word, used of failure of the pulse, &c. 
Hobart, M.L., p. 121 (cf. note on xvi 9). 

when once thou hast turned again : our Lord anticipates what 
will happen in v . 62, and in Jn xxi 15 sqq. 

stablish thy brethren. Peter begins at once: Ac i 15 sqq., 
ii 14 sqq., iii 12 sqq., iv 8 sqq. ; in Gal ii 9 he is one of the three 
who have earned the reputation of being pillars of the Church : 
ot SoKowres crrvXoi flvai. 

33. Lord with thee I am ready. Cf . Jn xiii 37. All four Evange 
lists record this boast in varying phraseology. Luke is perhaps 
nearest to John (xiii 37). Mark alone gives the further protest after 
our Lord s answer. 

34. the cock shall not crow. All four again give this prediction, 
and again in varying phraseology. Mark alone has twice, here 
and in the corresponding narrative (xiv 68, 72). It seems strange 
that Luke, if using Mark as in the early ministry, should have omitted 
this picturesque detail. But the same is true of Matthew (cf . Bartlet, 
Oxf. Stud., p. 333). There are touches in the Marcan Passion story 
that favour the theory of a second edition of Mark, after its use 
by Matthew and Luke. 

that thou knowest me. This detail is given by St Luke only, 
though the other two Synoptists specify it also in the narrative of 
the denial. Luke, like John, puts the prediction in the Supper- 
room ; Matthew and Mark on the way to the Mount of Olives. 

tions require new precautions. 

35 And he said unto them, When I sent you forth without 
purse, and wallet, and shoes, lacked ye anything ? And they 
said, Nothing. 36 And he said unto them, But now, he that 

282 ST LUKE [XXII 35-38 

hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise a wallet : 1 and he 
that hath none, let him sell his cloke, and buy a sword. 37 For 
I say unto you, that this which is written must be fulfilled in 
me, And he was reckoned with transgressors : for that which 
concerneth me hath fulfilment. 38 And they said, Lord, 
behold, here are two swords. And he said unto them, It is 
1 Or, and he that hath no sword, let him sell his cloke, and buy one. 2 Gr. end. 

35. without purse, and wallet, and shoes. Curiously, the phrase 
corresponds to x 4 the charge to the Seventy (which see) ; there 
is nothing to match it in the charge to the Twelve as given by 
St Luke (ix 3). 

36. But now . . . New conditions demand new measures. The 
disciples of an executed malefactor will be in different case from 
those of one protected by His popularity with the common people. 

There is to be the same reliance on Providence which the Mission 
of last year so abundantly justified ; but now they will have to face 
bitter hostility and persecution without the visible presence, 
guidance, and protection of their Master. Cf. Jn xv 18-21, of which 
St Luke alone thus gives us an echo. 

he that hath none (i. e. no purse), let him sell his cloke, and buy 
a sword. He must even dispense with his protection against rigours 
of the weather to procure the means of protection against human 
assailants. That the meeting of force by force is not literally 
intended here seems clear from His words at the arrest as reported 
by St Matthew : Put up again thy sword into its place : for all they 
that take the sword shall perish with the sword. The counsel to 
sell your cloke and buy a sword is a strong figurative expression : 
employ all legitimate means of self-defence. 

So St Paul repeatedly claims the privileges of his Roman 
citizenship (Ac xvi 37, xxii 25, xxv 11), and so, better still, the 
Pentecostal Church arms itself with a spirit of fearless confidence 
that glories in suffering shame for His Name (Ac iv 23 sqq., v 41, 42). 
Then these words bore splendid fruit ; for the moment they were 
grossly misunderstood. Cf. w. 49, 50. 

38. here are two swords. On this text (with the assumption that 
Peter is the spokesman) was based the pretensions to supreme govern 
ment, civil as well as ecclesiastical, of the mediaeval popes. The 
two swords are interpreted as the two jurisdictions. Our Lord 
affirms that these two are (not too much but) enough. They 
are both found in Peter s hands, therefore the control of government, 
alike civil and ecclesiastical, is in the hands of Peter s successor. 
See the Bull TJNAM SANCTAM of Boniface VIII, quoted by Plummer 
ad loc. The classical answer to these claims is Dante s Monarchia, 
in which he argues that the two authorities are both God-derived 

XXII 38-40] ST LUKE 283 

and independent of each other. Incidentally he comments very 
sensibly on this passage in Mon. iii 9, showing that the text will not 
bear the weight laid on it ; that Peter s was, as often, a superficial 
answer such as had often called forth rebuke from the Lord, and was 
mistakenly translated into action when he drew his sword later 
(v. 49). 

It is enough. Made much of in the Bull referred to in the pre 
ceding note : Non respondit Dominus nimis esse, sed satis. But 
the words are probably just a sad, or sadly ironical, dismissal of the 
subject. Enough, Very well, That will do. 

At this point, probably, should come the word of Jn xiv 31 : 
Arise, let us go hence. 

(c) 39-46 The Agony and Bloody Sweat : Mat xxvi 36-46, 

Mk xiv 32-42 

All three Synoptists record the Agony and repeated prayer ; 
St Luke alone the Bloody Sweat and the Vision of the Angel. 
St John s only reference but that a clear one is the cup of 
xviii 11 : he seems to concentrate the mental anguish and struggle 
earlier, xii 23-33. 

Christian Art and not least modern Art (cf . Hof mann s familiar 
picture) has loved to portray the pathos of this scene. Italian 
painters mostly follow St Luke, showing a kneeling Christ (v. 41) 
and a succouring angel (v. 43), as in the Baptism they introduce the 
Lucan feature of the Dove s visible form. P. L. W. gives a xivth 
cent, picture. There are two representations side by side in the 
National Gallery : Giovanni Bellini (No. 1417) and Mantegna 
(No. 726). The former is described by Mrs Jameson (Hist, of O.L., 
vol. ii, p. 31), who also reproduces a Graeco-Latin miniature of 
thirteenth century and an etching of Rembrandt (ib., pp. 24-33). 

This solemn experience was, according to Papini (p. 449), the 
devil s threatened return (cf. iv 13) the second Temptation, in 
a desert more lonely than the first. So also Godet : There He 
rejected dominion over us without God ; here He accepts death for 
God and for us. The author of the Epistle to the Hebrews 
(v 7 sqq.) adduces this rather than the earlier experience after 
Baptism as type and example of His being tempted like as we are 
(ib., iv 15). The Christ at the beginning, fresh from baptism, full 
of hope, enflamed with love, withstood the Tempter unflinching ; 
but the Christ nearing His end, deserted by His dearest, betrayed 
by a disciple, sought out by His foes, shall be conquered (thinks the 
Fiend) by fear, though cupidity could not conquer Him (Papini, 
loc. cit.). 

39 And he came out, and went, as his custom was, unto 
the mount of Olives ; and the disciples also followed him. 
40 And when he was at the place, he said unto them, Pray 

284 ST LUKE [XXII 39 - 4 i 

that ye enter not into temptation. 41 And he was parted 
from them about a stone s cast ; and he kneeled down and 
prayed, 42 saying, Father, if thou be willing, remove this 
cup from me : nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done. 
43 J And there appeared unto him an angel from heaven, 
strengthening him. 44 And being in an agony he prayed 
more earnestly : and his sweat became as it were great drops 
of blood falling down upon the ground. 45 And when he rose 
up from his prayer, he came unto the disciples, and found them 
sleeping for sorrow, 46 and said unto them, Why sleep ye ? 
rise and pray, that ye enter not into temptation. 

1 Many ancient authorities omit ver. 43, 44. 

39. as his custom was, unto the mount of Olives. This perhaps 
refers back to xxi 37, to His custom during Holy Week. But we 
remember also how the fourth Evangelist describes this walk as to 
a garden beyond the Kidron brook to which Jesus oft-times 
resorted . . . with his disciples (xviii 1). The site of this garden 
has been shown on the hill-side since the time of Constantine. It is 
about fifty yards beyond the Kidron bridge, and on the east side 
of the track. Though its exactitude is incapable of demonstration, 
it cannot be far wrong. The first and third Gospels describe it as 
a place called Gethsemane (see next verse). 

40. when he was at the place. So the scene of the giving of the 
Lord s Prayer (Lk xi 1) is described as a certain place. Dr Armitage 
Robinson, who (see note on xi 1) conjectures that that place is 
Gethsemane (Texts and Studies, i, No. 3, pp. 108, 109), detects in 
w. 40, 42 here an atmosphere, as it were, of the Lord s Prayer 
lingering over the spot. Pray that ye enter not into temptation 
. . . Father . . . Thy will be done . . . 

Pray that ye enter not into temptation. St Luke alone mentions 
this exhortation to the Eleven, and (with St John) omits the 
segregation of the Three and the coming to them after prayer. 
Mat xxvi 37, 40, 43, 45 ; Mk xiv 33, 37, 40, 41. 

41. parted from them. A strong word, lit. torn from them, 
yet used of an ordinary parting in Ac xxi 1. Here perhaps the 
word has more of its original force. We all can tell something of 
the way in which supreme emotion tears us away from the company 
even of our nearest. His emotion was unique, as He was taking 
upon Him the burden of the world s sin not merely facing the 
appalling events of the next twelve hours. 

about a stone s cast : perhaps fifty to ninety yards from the main 
group ; only a little distance (Matthew, Mark) from Peter, James, 
and John. 

kneeled down. Luke only. The other Synoptists picture Him 
prostrate upon the ground. As momentous a verse as v. 20. The 

XXII 4 i -44] ST LUKE 285 

Jews habitually stood up to pray (Mat vi 5, Mk xi 25, Lk xviii 11, 13), 
though Daniel in O.T. kneeled upon his knees (Dan vi 10). The 
posture of Christ in Gethsemane was followed, as St Luke records, 
by the Christians of the first generation (Ac vii 60, ix 40, xx 36, 
xxi 5). St Paul tells us of his own practice in Eph iii 14. There 
was some confusion in the fourth century, and the Council of Nicaea 
ordered that prayer should be said standing during the Easter 

42. Father, if thou be willing. Papini boldly says this prayer 
to the Father was an instigation of the devil (p. 444), and sees in 
the Bloody Sweat the token of the un-human and superhuman 
effort to keep back a repetition of the prayer and limit Himself to 
a glad acceptance of the cup (p. 451). The Evangelist records 
for our example both the strong crying and its cancelling or 
retraction. The Author to the Hebrews says He was heard for 
his godly fear (Heb v 7) : it was His devout and reverent sub 
mission to the Father that won the victory and He was saved 
from death, though not from dying. 

In Mat xx vi 39, 42, we have a glimpse of the progressive steps 
in that perfect submission by which the human soul of the Divine 
Son fought out this supreme struggle; showing the truth of 
Heb v 8, 9. 

When all has been said, the Agony, with the fourth Word from 
the cross recorded by Matthew and Mark, remains the most in 
scrutable mystery in the Gospel story, and only becomes dimly 
explicable in the light of the Christian doctrine of the Atonement. 
(Cf. the present writer s Atonement, Rivingtons 1904, p. 93.) 

not my will, but thine, be done. It is remarkable that, while in his 
version of the Lord s Prayer St Luke omits the clause Thy will be 
done, he inserts it here. Contrast the Marcan form (Mk xiv 36), 
Not what I will, but what thou wilt. Cf. Morrison, The Lord s 
Prayer, p. 144 note. 

43, 44. And there appeared . . . upon the ground. The MS 
evidence for the omission of these two characteristic verses is 
strong, though not conclusive, and the Patristic evidence strengthens 
it further. Like xxiii 34a it is most clearly a part of the original 
Christian tradition even if it was not of the original Lucan text. 
Westcott and Hort who reject it in that sense write (N.T. in 
Greek, vol. ii, Notes on Select Readings, p. 67), These verses and 
the first sentences of xxiii 34 may be safely called the most precious 
among the remains of the evangelic tradition which were rescued 
from oblivion by the scribes of the second century. On the other 
hand both passages are intensely Lucan in character (cf. note on 
xxiii 34) : the angel (cf. i 11, 26, xv 10, xvi 22, xxiv 4 ; Ac i 10, 
vi 15, viii 26, x 3, xii 7) and the pathological details, interesting 
to the physician. If the incident were to be regarded as a fiction, it 
would be more easy to suggest that St Luke had invented it than 
any one else ! 

286 ST LUKE [XXII 43-47 

43. an angel from heaven. Not to minister to His exhaustion 
after the Bloody Sweat, but to strengthen Him to pray more 
earnestly to agonize so intensely as to produce that phenomenon. 

Does St Luke omit the angelic ministration in the first Tempta 
tion, iv 13, because he is going to mention it in the second ? 

44. being in an agony. The Greek word dywi/ta expresses not so 
much pain as intense and acute anxiety. Fear of an uncertain 
future was the Stoic definition of it. Cf. W. R. Paton, Classical 
Review, Sept. 1913, p. 194. 

great drops. This is indeed a cup and a baptism ; cf . Mat xx 
22, 23, Mk x 38, 39, and Jn xviii 11. Theophrastus notes sweat 
(of the feet at least) to be a physical accompaniment of dywvta in 
its strict sense of the anxiety of the starters in a race ; and Luke 
no doubt described here a physical symptom he had met with in 
his practice as a physician (Paton, ut supra). 

45. 46. he came unto the disciples. The account in Matthew 
and Mark is fuller and more graphic. Three times He prays, three 
times revisits the sleep-ridden three. They record the pathetic 
appeal : Could ye not watch with me one hour, and the puzzling 
words (ironical ?) Sleep on now and take your rest, spoken just as 
Judas and his band were approaching. 

(d) 47-53 The Arrest. Mat xxvi 47-56, Mk xiv 43-50, 
Jn xviii 3-11 

There are no special Lucan features in this incident upon which 
Christian Art could fasten except the healing of Malchus ear. 
Giotto, in his Paduan frescoes, has a remarkable picture of the kiss 
of Judas, in which the traitor appears as the personification of 
sensual vulgarity. Fra Angelico s picture in the Academy at 
Florence gives Judas a black halo. Duccio s representation at 
Siena shows the disciples fleeing like frightened sheep. Mrs Jameson 
(Hist, of O.L., vol. ii, pp. 39-42) mentions this, and reproduces 
a picture of Van Dyck at Madrid ; P. L. W. gives Fra Angelico. 

This may be called the first incident of Good Friday, as it 
presumably occurred after midnight. 

47 While he yet spake, behold, a multitude, and he that 
was called Judas, one of the twelve, went before them ; and 
he drew near unto Jesus to kiss him. 48 But Jesus said unto 
him, Judas, betrayest thou the Son of man with a kiss ? 

47. a multitude. Matthew, a great multitude. Matthew and 
Mark, with swords and staves (Luke is content to mention these 
in v. 52). John (whose account is much fuller), with lanterns and 
torches and weapons. 

XXII 47-Si] ST LUKE 287 

one of the, twelve : this apparently superfluous description is in all 
three Synoptists. Its object is not so much to specify the traitor 
as to throw his criminality into tragic relief. 

to kiss him. So all three Synoptists, but not the fourth Evange 
list. Luke, like John, has no mention of the actual kiss ; and, as 
far as his narrative is concerned, our Lord s words in the next verse 
might be taken as anticipating and avoiding it. The kiss was the 
customary form of greeting between Master and disciple. Matthew 
and Mark say the kiss was given, and was a preconcerted signal, and 
was accompanied with the greeting Rabbi ! or Hail, Rabbi ! 

48. Judas, betrayest thou, &c. St Mark omits this utterance : 
St Matthew has in its place : Friend, do that for which thou art 
come (cf . the whispered words in the Upper Room recorded by 
St John xiii 27 : That thou doest, do quickly ). St John s 
account here is fuller and different, giving, from the point of view 
of another eyewitness a vivid picture of confusing scenes in the 
torch-light. He sees Christ come forward as if to protect His lambs 
from the wolves, and ask boldly Whom seek ye ? , and twice hurl 
back the pack by the terror of His majesty. He sees Judas standing 
irresolute among his newly-chosen companions. Then his narrative 
coalesces with that of the Synoptists. 

49-51. THE HEALING OF MALCHTTS EAR : Trench, Mir., pp. 


49 And when they that were about him saw what would 
follow, they said, Lord, shall we smite with the sword ? 
50 And a certain one of them smote the Servant of the high 
priest, and struck off his right ear. 51 But Jesus answered 
and said, Suffer ye thus far. And he touched his ear, and 
healed him. 

1 Gr. bondservant. 

49. shall we smite with the sword ? The words of v. 37 still ring 
in their dazed ears, and they take them literally. 

50. his right ear. So only Luke of the Synoptists ; John agrees, 
and adds the names of smiter and smitten, names which for obvious 
reasons were not at first published. It is from the narrative of the 
fourth Gospel that the mediaeval canonists draw their inference 
that the two swords of v. 38 were found in Peter s hands. St John 
knew some one in the High Priest s household, and saw a kinsman 
of Malchus there that night (xviii 15). 

51. Suffer ye thus far. Probably addressed to the disciples : 
Hold ! Let it go no further ! forbidding them to obstruct His 
arrest, which was predestined (v. 53b). 

Others take it as an answer to the arresters : Excuse this 
act of resistance, it shall go no further, or Leave me free for this 
one act (the healing touch). Mark has nothing corresponding to 

288 ST LUKE [XXII 5 i-XXlll 32 

this. Matthew, the injunction to the smiter, Put up again thy 
sword, &c. and the twelve legions of angels (xxvi 52, 53). 

he touched his ear, and healed him. It was a typical act of mercy 
to an enemy (cf. vi 27), but had also, no doubt, a practical bearing. 
Jesus would not allow His assailants justification for claiming that 
He was leader of an armed band ; cf . Jn xviii 36. The incident is 
peculiar to St Luke and naturally recorded with interest by the 
Beloved Physician, as the only known instance of His curing a 
violently inflicted wound. (Cf. Trench, Mir., p. 280.) 

52 And Jesus said unto the chief priests, and captains of 
the temple, and elders, which were come against him, Are ye 
come out, as against a robber, with swords and staves ? 
53 When I was daily with you in the temple, ye stretched 
not forth your hands against me : but this is your hour, 
and the power of darkness. 

52. as against a robber. He is being treated as a robber : He 
has just shown Himself the Good Samaritan (x 30, 33). 

with swords and staves. See note on v. 47. 

53. When I was daily with you in the temple. A retort evoked 
by the unnecessary indignity of the binding. Cowards ! why did 
you not arrest Me publicly, in open daylight ? He recognizes 
among them some who had been listeners on Monday, Tuesday, and 
Wednesday, and perhaps on previous occasions. John gives (xviii 20) 
a parallel and fuller statement before the high priest : I ever 
taught in synagogues, and in the temple, where all the Jews come 

the power of darkness. The phrase, here peculiar to St Luke, is 
identical with Col i 13, and may point to the close companionship 
between the Evangelist and St Paul (Hawkins, Hor. Syn., p. 197). 
The same thought occurs in the presentiment of Jn xiv 30 : the 
prince of this world cometh : and he hath nothing in me. 

[Here follows the incident of the flight of St Mark, as related by 
himself, Mk xiv 51, 52. Cf. Edersh. L. and T. ii, p. 545.] 

(3) XXII 54 XXIII 32 The Trials : The Way of the Cross 

See Edersh. L. and T. ii, pp. 546 sqq. ; and for a vivid and 
picturesque presentment, Jas. Stalker, The Trial and Death of Jesus 
Christ, Hodder & Stoughton, 2nd Edn. 1895. Also B. S. Easton, 
critical note on the Trial of Jesus, in Amer. J. T. xix (3), July 
1915, pp. 430-452. 

There seem to have been three Jewish Trials, if we include 
one before Annas, ex-high priest and father-in-law of Caiaphas 
(Jn xviii 23). The first two must have been informal : no judge 
ment could beTdelivered at night. The formal meeting of the 
Sanhedrin will be No. 3. 

xxn 54-60] ST LUKE 289 

Of the first it is not certain that any details are recorded : if 
they are, we must find them in Jn xviii 19-23. 

Of the second (during which occurred Peter s denial according 
to all three Synoptists) details are given hi Mat xxvi 57 sqq., Mk xiv 
55-65. Perhaps Jn xviii 19-23 refers to this also, unless John s 
object is to correct the Synoptists and show that the Denial took 
place while Jesus was before Annas. 

The third, the formal meeting of the Sanhedrin, is mentioned by 
Mat xxvii 1 and by Mk xv 1. Luke here gives a report of its pro 
ceedings, which, however, closely resembles the account hi Matthew 
and Mark of the second trial. 

(The relation of these Synoptic narratives to that of the fourth 
Gospel depends on the interpretation of the verse Jn xviii 24 ; 
whether the aorist there may be rendered as a pluperfect, and the 
whole phrase as a parenthesis. See Edersh., p. 548 note.) St John, 
writing much later, may have unconsciously transferred to Annas 
what the Synoptists rightly ascribe to Caiaphas. The problem 
would be simpler if we could assume (with Godet and others) that 
Annas and Caiaphas lived in different wings of the same palace. 
Edersheim (p. 548) considers this very unlikely. 

Just possibly Luke s vague reference in v. 54 to the high priest s 
house may mean the house of Annas (cf . the ambiguous notice of 
iii 2) : if so, we have John and Luke here together again, as 
against the other two Evangelists. 

(a) XXII 54-65 Jewish Trial at Night ; Peter s Denial 

The longest account of this is in Mat xxvi 57-75 ; next comes 
Mk xiv 53-65 : important details of both of these are reproduced 
in Lk xxii 66-71 (the morning trial). The only important Lucan 
addition is in v. 61. 

54 And they seized him, and led him away, and brought 
him into the high priest s house. But Peter followed afar off. 
55 And when they had kindled a fire in the midst of the 
court, and had sat down together, Peter sat in the midst of 
them. 56 And a certain maid seeing him as he sat in the 
light of the fire, and looking stedfastly upon him, said, This 
man also was with him. 57 But he denied, saying, Woman, 
I know him not. 58 And after a little while another saw him, 
and said, Thou also art one of them. But Peter said, Man, 
I am not. 59 And after the space of about one hour another 
confidently affirmed, saying, Of a truth this man also was 
with him : for he is a Galilsean. 60 But Peter said, Man, 
I know not what thou sayest. And immediately, while he 

L. 19 

290 ST LUKE [XXII 54-63 

yet spake, the cock crew. 61 And the Lord turned, and looked 
upon Peter. And Peter remembered the word of the Lord, how 
that he said unto him, Before the cock crow this day, thou 
shalt deny me thrice. 62 And he went out, and wept bitterly. 
63 And the men that held 1 Jesus mocked him, and beat 
him. 64 And they blindfolded him, and asked him, saying, 
Prophesy : who is he that struck thee ? 65 And many 
other things spake they against him, reviling him. 

1 Gr. him. 

54. the high priest s house, i. e. palace of Caiaphas or possibly 
of Annas (see last note but one, p. 289). 

Peter followed afar off. Love made him follow ; fear, afar off. 
This phrase is in all three Synoptists : the fourth Evangelist omits 
afar off and adds that he was accompanied by another disciple 
known to the High Priest probably St John himself. 

56. a certain maid. The details of St Peter s denial are vivid 
and convincing in all four accounts, and afford a very typical 
instance of the kind of variation in detail which does not invalidate 
the witness on the main point. Here St Luke has (1) a maid, 
(2) a man, (3) a man : nearest to him, St John (1) the porteress, 
(2) the bystanders, (3) a kinsman of Malchus. St Mark (1) a maid, 
(2) the same maid, (3) the bystanders. St Matthew (1) a maid, 
(2) another maid, (3) the bystanders. Matthew and Mark say that 
St Peter began to curse and to swear. 

61. the Lord turned, and looked upon Peter. In this touch, given 
by him alone, Luke the Artist is at his highest. He has put the 
sublimest pathos into the simplest words. 

63. the men that held Jesus mocked him, dye. As foretold by 
Himself, xviii 32. The spitting mentioned there is specified here 
by Mat xxvi 67, 68, and Mk xiv 65. St Luke alone records a second 
mocking by Herod s soldiers ; the other three Evangelists a third, 
by the legionaries of Pilate. 

St Peter s denial has been a common Passion-subject of Art 
from early Christian times (Mrs Jameson, Sacr. and Leg. Art, 
pp. 201-202), even on the primitive sarcophagi, where the cock 
appears as symbol. Pictures of it are rare in the earlier Italian 
schools. His repentance was a congenial subject for Guercino s 
brush ; and Murillo has a remarkably symbolic picture in the 
Louvre, wherein the ardour of repentance gives the Apostle an 
insight into the forthcoming sufferings of the Saviour, and he finds 
himself kneeling, suppliant for forgiveness, before a Christ bound 
to the scourging post and crowned with thorns. 

The trial scene is depicted by Giotto in one of bis Paduan frescoes. 
P. L. W. gives one by Fra Angelico. Mrs Jameson (Hist, of O.L., 
vol. ii, pp. 49-51) describes that, and a picture by Gaudenzio Ferrari. 

xxil 66-71] ST LUKE 291 

(b) 66-71 Jewish Trial at Dawn ; the Great Confession 
Of. Edersh. L. and T. ii, pp. 549 sqq. 

66 And as soon as it was day, the assembly of the elders 
of the people was gathered together, both chief priests and 
scribes ; and they led him away into their council, saying, 
67 If thou art the Christ, tell us. But he said unto them, 
If I tell you, ye will not believe : 68 and if I ask you, ye will 
not answer. 69 But from henceforth shall the Son of man 
be seated at the right hand of the power of God. 70 And 
they all said, Art thou then the Son of God ? And he said 
unto them, x Ye say that I am. 71 And they said, What 
further need have we of witness ? for we ourselves have heard 
from his own mouth. 

1 Or, Ye say it, because I am. 

66. as soon as it was day : about 6 a.m. 

the assembly of the elders of the people, &c. Commonly thought 
to mean a regular meeting of the Jewish Supreme Council, the 
Sanhedrin. Edersheim (L. and T. ii, p. 557) denies that it can have 
been such a formal meeting, but not that its acts were the acts of 
all the Sanhedrists. 

67. // thou art the Christ, tell us. The Synoptists hardly give 
us overt ground for this challenge of the high priest ; but the 
fourth Gospel records the claim of Messiahship and Divine Sonship, 
as again and again suspected by the Jews in Jerusalem (Jn v 17-47, 
viii 56-59, x 33), so as to excite them to stone Him for blasphemy. 

69. from henceforth shall the Son of man, &c. Cf. Mat xxvi 
64, Mk xiv 62. This is a clear claim to Messiahship. He will pass 
immediately from death to glory. Indeed, according to Jn xiii 31, 
His glorification had already begun, when the traitor left the 
Upper Room. 

70. the Son of God. Mk xiv 61, The Christ, the Son of the Blessed. 
Ye say that I am. Cf . the answer to Pilate (Jn xviii 37), Thou 

sayest that I am a king. Almost, if not exactly, equivalent to : 
I am, as you say. 

71. What further need have we of witness ? St Luke implies, 
what St Matthew and St Mark state, that they had, so far as their 
will and judgement were concerned, condemned Him to a death 
which they were powerless to inflict. Matthew makes it clear 
(cf. Godet, ad loc.) that this meeting was called to decide on the 
way and means of getting Him put to death. That was, to hand 
him over to the secular arm of the Roman Procurator on a charge 
that was likely to lead to a capital sentence (rebellion against 
Rome, kingly pretensions, xxiii 2). So in Mark (xv 1) it looks almost 


292 ST LUKE [XXIII i- 7 

as though the meeting had been called simply to bind Him and 
convey Him to Pilate. Edersheim points out (p. 557) that when 
Pilate bade them judge Jesus according to Jewish law (Jn xviii 31) 
they replied, not : that they had done so already, but, that they 
had no competence to try capital causes. 

(c) XXIII 1-7 Roman Trial, before Pilate 

St Luke, like St Mark, does not specify the place. In Mat xxvii 
27 and Jn xviii 28 it is named Praetorium, and the latter (Jn xix 
13) adds the further designation of the Pavement, in Aramaic 
Gabbatha. The probable scene (cf. Sanday, Sacred Sites, p. 54) 
is not Fort Antonia, but the palace of Herod the Great, where 
Gessius Floras (Jos. B.J. II xiv 8, 9) scourged his victims and 
gave them over to crucifixion. From this site the traditional place 
of the Crucifixion would be some 300 to 400 yards distant, outside 
the gate. 

Prof. H. J. Cadbury (Expositor, June 1921, p. 439), regarding 
our Gospel as intended to be an Apology for Christianity 
addressed to intelligent Gentiles, notes apologetic marks in his 
account of the Trial : (a) the greater distinctness of the accusation 
(w. 2, 5) ; (6) the fourfold pronouncement of innocence (w. 4, 14, 
15, 22) ; and (c) Pilate s repeated efforts to release Jesus (w. 16, 
20, 22). 

On Christ before Pilate in Art, see Jameson, Hist, of O.L., 
vol. ii, pp. 61-70. Tintoretto s representation in the Scuola de 
S. Rocco is one of the most deservedly famous. It has been 
reproduced by Mrs Jenner (Christ in Art, p. 132), who sees in it 
a rare expression of the divine reticence. 

XXIII And the whole company of them rose up, and 
brought him before Pilate. 2 And they began to accuse 
him, saying, We found this man perverting our nation, and 
forbidding to give tribute to Caesar, and saying that he himself 
is 1 Christ a king. 3 And Pilate asked him, saying, Art thou 
the King of the Jews ? And he answered him and said, 
Thou sayest. 4 And Pilate said unto the chief priests and the 
multitudes, I find no fault in this man. 5 But they were the 
more urgent, saying, He stirreth up the people, teaching 
throughout all Judaea, and beginning from Galilee even unto 
this place. 6 But when Pilate heard it, he asked whether the 
man were a Galilaean. 7 And when he knew that he was of 
Herod s jurisdiction, he sent him unto Herod, who himself also 
was at Jerusalem in these days. 

1 Or, an anointed king 

xxm i-8] ST LUKE 293 

1. before Pilate. Pontius Pilatus was appointed by Tiberius 
fifth procurator of Judaea in A. D. 26, and recalled in A. D. 36 after 
an ill-judged and provocative measure in Samaria (Jos. Ant. XVIII 
ivl,2). Caligula banished him to Gaul, and he died in exile. Mount 
Pilatus, near Lucerne, witnesses to the tradition of his death there. 

2. We found this man, &c. The first two Gospels specify no 
accusation, but imply that it involved a claim to be King of the 
Jews. In the fourth the implication comes later (xviii 33) ; at 
first only the vague evil doer (/ca/coTrotds), extorted by Pilate s 
question. Here the charge is clear cut and logical : before Caiaphas 
Jesus had admitted His claim to Christhood : Christhood involved 
kingship, and this would form a tangible accusation in the Roman 
Court laesa maiestas, treason. If He claimed political kingship 
it would follow that He desired to withhold the tribute. So they 
insolently add this charge, though from the incident of xx 21-26 
they must have known it to be untrue. Thus they have a climax 
of three charges : (a) seditious teaching, cf. v. 5 ; (6) withholding 
of tribute ; (c) claim to sovereignty. 

3. Art thou the King of the Jews ? This question is identically 
recorded in all four Gospels, and implies the specific charge of v. 2. 
The malignity of the accusation of political schemes, which our Lord 
studiedly avoided (cf. Jn xviii 36), lies in the fact that many of 
His accusers would have been followers if He had consented to head 
a political insurrection. 

4. / find no fault : declaration of innocence repeated em 
phatically in the resumed trial (vv. 14, 22). The mere answer to 
his question could not have led to this conclusion. We must posit 
a further conversation such as is given in Jn xviii 33-37. 

5. all Judcea suggests something more than the few days at 
Jerusalem recorded by the Synoptists, and gives corroboration to 
the fourth Evangelist s narrative of several visits to Jerusalem; 
cf. notes on iv 14, 15, and ix 51. 

(d) 8-12 Christ before Herod 

The interest of this incident lies in its undesigned consistency 
with the rest of the Gospel. It is in a line with St Luke s special 
interest in a knowledge of the Court of Herod (see note on viii 3) : 
while the action of Pilate here described is explained by St Luke s 
previous allusion (xiii 1-3) to a recent outrage committed by Pilate 
on some of Herod s subjects. Herod doubtless protested at the 
time, and his protest, if carried further, might have compromised 
Pilate at Rome. Pilate is therefore on his guard not to offend again 
in the same way. He sees an opportunity (a) of shifting his re 
sponsibility for a decision, and (6) of patching up his quarrel with 
Herod. In the latter he succeeds, but not in the former. 

The inclusion of the story how Herod treated the Good 
Physician with cynical generosity must be held to illustrate the 

294 ST LUKE [XXlH8-i 3 

excellence of St Luke s historical information rather than his 
credulity or inventiveness (Prof. Burkitt, The Gospel History and its 
Transmission, Preface). 

8 Now when Herod saw Jesus, he was exceeding glad : 
for he was of a long time desirous to see him, because he had 
heard concerning him ; and he hoped to see some 1 miracle 
done by him. 9 And he questioned him in many words ; 
but he answered him nothing. 10 And the chief priests and 
the scribes stood, vehemently accusing him. 11 And Herod 
with his soldiers set him at nought, and mocked him, and 
arraying him in gorgeous apparel sent him back to Pilate. 
12 And Herod and Pilate became friends with each other 
that very day : for before they were at enmity between 

1 Gr. sign. 

8. hoped to see some miracle. His conception of Christ was 
that of an essentially savage nature, that He was just what He had 
refused to be at the third temptation (iv 9-12) and as often as he 
had refused a mere sign (xi 16, 29 sqq.) viz. a thaumaturge 
or popular miracle-worker. 

9. answered him nothing. Treating Herod with the contempt 
he deserved. 

11. mocked him. St Luke omits the subsequent mocking by 
Pilate s Roman soldiers, narrated by the other three Evangelists, 
and the purple robe with which they clothed him. This gorgeous 
apparel has by some been interpreted as the white robe of a 
candidate for monarchy. The word tells us nothing as to its 
colour. The purpose of the two robes was the same, to make fun 
of His claim to be a King. 

12. became friends. One of the most ironical situations in the 
world s history. 

(e) 13-25 Roman Trial Resumed ; Pilate s Condemnation 
Mat xxvii 15-26, Mk xv 6-15, Jn xviii 29 xix 16 

St Luke s account is substantially the same as that of the other 
two Synoptists, though it differs a good deal in the telling. St John s 
account is more circumstantial, and designed to bring out points 
passed over by the other Evangelists, e. g. the distinction between 
Pilate s conversations with the Jews outside and with the Prisoner 
within the Praetorium. St Matthew s important contribution is 
the message from Pilate s wife (xxvii 19) which may well have 
stimulated the Procurator to further futile efforts for the release. 

xxiil i 4 -i8] ST LUKE 295 

13 And Pilate called together the chief priests and the 
rulers and the people, 14 and said unto them, Ye brought 
unto me this man, as one that perverteth the people : and 
behold, I, having examined him before you, found no fault 
in this man touching those things whereof ye accuse him : 

15 no, nor yet Herod : for he sent him back unto us ; and 
behold, nothing worthy of death hath been done by him. 

16 I will therefore chastise him, and release him. 1 18 But 
they cried out all together, saying, Away with this man, and 
release unto us Barabbas : 19 one who for a certain insur 
rection made in the city, and for murder, was cast into prison. 
20 And Pilate spake unto them again, desiring to release 
Jesus ; 21 but they shouted, saying, Crucify, crucify him. 
22 And he said unto them the third time, Why, what evil 
hath this man done ? I have found no cause of death in him : 
I will therefore chastise him and release him. 23 But they 
were instant with loud voices, asking that he might be crucified. 
And their voices prevailed. 24 And Pilate gave sentence 
that what they asked for should be done. 25 And he released 
him that for insurrection and murder had been cast into 
prison, whom they asked for ; but Jesus he delivered up to 
their will. 

1 Many ancient authorities insert ver. 17 Now he must needs release unto them 
at the feast one prisoner. Others add the same words after ver. 19. 

14. having examined Mm before you : implies more than is given 
us in w. 27. St Luke brings out very clearly the verdict of not 
guilty which preceded the delivery up to crucifixion. Cf . note on 
w. 1-7. 

15. nor yet Herod. This is a new factor, by the introduction of 
which Pilate hopes to gain his point without shouldering too much 

16. chastise him, and release him. A cowardly compromise 
(repeated later, v. 22b) which Pilate s conscience could surely not 
approve. If He were innocent, why chastise Him : if guilty, why 
release Him ? The proposed scourging a most cruel chastise 
ment is to appease His would-be murderers with a sight of His 

17. [Now he must needs release unto them at the feast one prisoner] 
is relegated to Margin in R.V. An insertion from Mat xxvii 15. 

18. release unto us Barabbas. The dramatic contrast between 
the murderer released and the Innocent crucified is well brought out 

296 ST LUKE [XXIII 21-25 

(cf. v. 25). But for the reason of their cry the custom of release 
of a prisoner at the festival and the disappointment of Pilate s 
hope to use this for the release of Jesus we have to look to the 
other three Gospels. As Papini points out (pp. 514, 515) there was 
only one alternative to Jesus the Jews would have accepted, and 
that was Pilate himself. It was his clear duty to face delation to 
Tiberius. At the worst he would only have suffered what he did 
suffer at Caligula s hands a few years later, and he would have had 
the consolation of a good conscience. 

21. they shouted, saying, Crucify, crucify him. St Luke makes 
it abundantly clear that Pilate s cowardly action was due to fear 
of the Jewish crowd : cf. v. 23. St John (xix 16) gives us an 
insight into the reason of his fear not so much the dread of a 
bloody tumult he had his methods of dealing with such as the 
fear of an accusation before Tiberius. If thou release this man, 
thou art not Caesar s friend. St John adds the hypocritical cry of 
the Chief Priests, We have no king but Caesar (xix 15), to which 
St Matthew adds Pilate s hand- washing, and the terrible imprecation 
of the people (Mat xxvii 25), His blood be on us, and on our children ! 
If the Great Refusal of Dante s Inferno (iii 59) has any scriptural 
analogue or reference, Pilate is surely a more appropriate subject 
than the Ruler of xviii 18 ? See note there. 

(f ) 26-32 The Way to Calvary 

The traditional Via Dolorosa lies on the line from the Tower of 
Antonia. If Herod s Palace be the place of judgement (see note 
on v. 1) the route will need revision. The sacred sites were the 
scene of pilgrimages from at least circa A. D. 170 (Melito, ap. Euseb. 
H.E. iv 26, 14) : but the fourteen Stations of the Cross are of 
much later date. An indulgence was decreed for them by Inno 
cent XI (1691-1700). Four of these stations the meeting with 
the Blessed Virgin, and with Veronica, and the Second and Third 
Falls have no ground in the Gospels. Of the remaining ten 
St Luke records eight (if a fall under the Cross be implied in v. 26) 
and one (see vv. 27 sqq.) is peculiar to him. On the Stations in 
Art, see Jameson, Hist, of O.L., vol. ii, pp. 120-123. 

26 And when they led him away, they laid hold upon one 
Simon of Gyrene, coming from the country, and laid on him 
the cross, to bear it after Jesus. 

26. laid hold upon : they had the power to commandeer labour 
for such a task. Matthew and Mark use the technical word dyya- 


Simon of Cyrene. The Cyrenians had a Synagogue of their own 
at Jerusalem (Ac vi 9). N.T. references to this Simon are all doubt 
ful except that of Mk xv 21, where he is described as father of 

XXIII 26-32] ST LUKE 297 

Alexander and Rufus, who were therefore Christiana well known 
to the first generation. In Rom xvi 13 a Rufus is mentioned, and 
his mother who may be this Simon s widow and in Ac xiii la 
Symeon next to Lucius of Gyrene. 

The cross-bearing forms three of the subjects of the traditional 
Station pictures : (1) carrying, (2) first of three falls, (3) meeting 
with B.V.M. It has been a favourite subject from Giotto onwards. 
The National Gallery has three Station pictures, by Ribalta (No. 
2930), Pedrini (3097), and Borgognone (1077s). Cross-bearings 
by Gaddi (S ta Croce, Florence) and Giorgione (at Boston) are 
described by Mrs Jenner, op. cit., pp. 89, 128. 

27-31. THE DAUGHTERS OF JERUSALEM : a very characteristic 
incident peculiar to this Gospel of Womanhood (cf . note on viii 
1-3). This is St Luke s own Station of the Cross. 

27 And there followed him a great multitude of the people, 
and of women who bewailed and lamented him. 28 But 
Jesus turning unto them said, Daughters of Jerusalem, weep 
not for me, but weep for yourselves, and for your children. 
29 For behold, the days are coming, in which they shall say, 
Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bare, and 
the breasts that never gave suck. 30 Then shall they begin 
to say to the mountains, Fall on us ; and to the hills, Cover 
us. 31 For if they do these things in the green tree, what 
shall be done in the dry ? 

28. A kind of a fortiori. Jesus reciprocates, and more than 
reciprocates, their sympathy. There will be something to weep 
for, a few decades hence, for which I have wept (xix 41) more 
terrible by far than my brief sufferings gladly borne. The more 
terrible because the doom of sin, invoked by the Jews themselves 
(Mat xxvii 25). 

29. Blessed are the barren : for they shall not suffer in their 
children : a final and grim Beatitude (Papini, p. 530). 

31. the green tree . . . the dry. Variously interpreted (a) If the 
Romans treat me admittedly innocent thus, how will they treat 
the guilty, with just cause of anger ? (6) If Jerusalem is responsible 
for such deeds in time of prosperity, what will she be capable of in 
the distressful days to come when her cup of iniquity shall be full ? 
Cf. Ezek xv 1-5. 

32. THE Two MALEFACTORS : cf . w. 39-43. 

32 And there were also two others, malefactors, led with 
him to be put to death. 

298 ST LUKE [XXIII 32-34 

32. And there were also two others, malefactors, led with him. 
Texts here vary very much, trying, in various ways, to avoid 
numbering Jesus among the transgressors (Isa liii 12), which 
the original without any thought of blasphemy does. These two, 
according to Matthew and Mark, were A^o-rat, highway robbers, 
or bandits : the word which our Lord had used hi indignant scorn 
to His captors, when He saw the swords and staves in the Garden 
(xxii 52) ; and His enemies had probably schemed this companion 
ship in order to suggest that He was a criminal of like sort. But see 
Plummer s note, ad loc. 

(4) 33-56 The Death and Burial 
(a) 33-49 The Crucifixion and Death 

33 And when they came unto the place which is called 
x The skull, there they crucified him, and the malefactors, one 
on the right hand and the other on the left. 34 2 And Jesus 
said, Father, forgive them ; for they know not what they do. 
And parting his garments among them, they cast lots. 35 And 
the people stood beholding. And the rulers also scoffed at 
him, saying, He saved others ; let him save himself, if this 
is the Christ of God, his chosen. 36 And the soldiers also 
mocked him, coming to him, offering him vinegar, 37 and 
saying, If thou art the King of the Jews, save thyself. 38 And 
there was also a superscription over him, THIS is THE KING 

1 According to the Latin, Calvary, which has the same meaning. 

2 Some ancient authorities omit And Jesus said, Father, forgive them ; for they 
know not what they do. 

33. the place which is called The skull (A.V. called Calvary, 
from Vulg. Calvaria). The other three Evangelists give the Aramaic 
equivalent Golgotha probably from some association attached 
to the place, e. g. as a Roman place of execution. Dr Sanday 
inclines to the traditional site of this and of the Holy Sepulchre the 
one recovered by Constantino in A.D. 356. A rival site, supported 
by Gen. Gordon and Col. Conder, is that on the north side of the 
city, a skull shaped hillock above Jeremiah s grotto, near the 
place of Jewish execution. But (a) there is no reason to identify 
the Roman and Jewish places of execution, and (b) it is not till 
comparatively late that the place of crucifixion is pictured as a hill 
(Sanday, Sacred Sites, pp. 67-77 ; Hastings D.B., art. Golgotha ). 

34. Father, forgive them : He made intercession for the trans 
gressors (Isa liii 12) . This Gospel records three of the Seven Words 

xxm 34= 351 ST LUKE 299 

from the Cross : St John three more. St Matthew and St Mark 
unite in recording only the most difficult of the utterances, My God, 
my God, why hast Thou forsaken me ? 

St Luke s Words are the first (here), the second (v. 43), and the 
last (v. 46). It is worth noting that the first and last are in substance 
reproduced in St Luke s record of the last utterances of the first 
martyr, St Stephen : Lord, lay not this sin to their charge 
(Ac vii 60), and Lord Jesus, receive my spirit (Ac vii 59). 

This verse was rejected by Westcott and Hort, on the ground of 
poor MS authority (cf. R.V. Marg.) : but it has early Patristic 
attestation (Irenaeus, Origen), and the proportional weight now 
given to that is greater than it was. 

But the verse itself is its own best attestation. It has the ring 
of genuineness, and is undoubtedly genuine history, if not a part of 
Luke s Gospel : just as is the Pericope Adulterae (see on xxi 28) 
even if it belong to neither fourth Gospel nor third. If Codex 
Bezae (D) be accepted, these words will stand, as also the record of 
the Bloody Sweat and the Angelic Succour (xxii 43, 44). 

Here also, as in xxiv 43, 44, there is a second line of defence : 
because the sayings have not only the ring of genuineness, but are 
characteristically Lucan, and doubly so when read with Ac vii 59, 60. 

for they know not what they do : this clause limits indeed the range 
of the forgiveness, as Papini points out ; but is postulated by the 
impossibility of absolution of evil openly willed, without guarantee 
of penitence (p. 534). Our actions are called forth as is emphasized 
by the work of psycho-analysis by so many underground move 
ments within our nature that there is little evil-doing in the world 
into which ignorance does not enter, in some degree, as a factor. 
No one save Jesus Himself could estimate that day s work in true 
perspective. And because this is so, He prays not only for the 
Roman soldiers, driving the nails into His hands and feet, but for 
His malicious foes among the Jews. 

Less than two months afterwards Peter will call some of these 
to repentance with the plea : And now, brethren, I wot that in 
ignorance ye did it, as did also your rulers. . . . Repent ye there 
fore . . . (Ac Hi 17, 19). 

they cast lots. The garments of one executed were the perquisites 
of the soldiers on duty. St John, who was present, gives further 
details, and adduces the text of Ps xxii 18 : 

They parted my garments among them, 
And upon my vesture did they cast lots. 

which the Synoptists cite, as it were, without quotation marks. 

35. And the people stood beholding . . . And the rulers scoffed. 
In the Greek text the two words beholding and scoffed stand in 
juxtaposition, and together form a quotation from Ps xxii 8 (Oewpwv 
ee/u)/<T7//3iov). This episode of the Crucifixion is, in fact, in all 
four Evangelists, a kind of acted commentary on that great Psalm. 

300 ST LUKE [XXIII 35-40 

let him save himself. No doubt He could have done, had He 
been willing to reject the cup (xxii 42) at the last moment. In 
the person of these Jewish leaders Satan is making his last great 
assault ; on the lines of the former attacks (iv 9, xxii 42). If He 
cannot rescue Himself, they assume it is for want of power ; whereas 
it is the power of His redeeming love that alone has placed Him 
and keeps Him on the Cross. 

if this is the Christ of God, his chosen. This (ouros) is contemptu 
ous (cf. xiv 30). We can see them pointing the finger of scorn at 
the helpless-looking, humiliated, and tortured figure. The Christ 
of God as in Peter s confession (ix 20), the chosen as in the Voice 
at the Transfiguration (ix 35). Matthew and Mark prefix to the 
chief priests mocking that of the passers-by, and Matthew 
adds to the former a taunt which echoes yet another verse of the 
Crucifixion Psalm (Ps xxii 8) the opening verse of which both he 
and Mark record as an utterance of the Crucified (Mat xxvii 46, 
Mk xv 34). 

36. the soldiers also mocked him. St Luke alone mentions this. 
Their mockery, as he expresses it, was a milder following of the 
violent example of the Jews. 

offering him vinegar : recalling another Psalm (Ixix 21 ). Matthew 
and Mark record a later offering of the same sour wine (Mat xxvi 
48, Mk xv 36). 

38. a superscription. It was written on a board which the con 
demned carried by a cord round his neck on the way to execution ; 
after which it was nailed up over his head. In this case St John 
says it was inscribed in three languages Hebrew, Greek, and 
Latin (Jn xix 20). St Luke s version probably represents the 
Greek form. From the altercation between Pilate and the Jewish 
leaders which St John there records, it would seem that Pilate 
dictated it as a deliberate insult to them. St Luke evidently regards 
it as an insult to Christ also. 

39-43. THE PENITENT ROBBER. This episode, like xxii 43, 44 
and xxiii 34, is peculiar to St Luke, and very characteristic of him : 
but unlike the case of those passages there is no doubt here of 
the genuineness of the text. Codex Bezae has, indeed, a somewhat 
different reading in v. 39 and an addition in v. 41, but there is no 
question as to the episode as such. 

Here is exhibited Jesus, in whose ears the derisive challenge, 
Save ! - - Save ! Save ! has been ringing (w. 35, 37, 39), 
winning His first-fruits as Saviour upon the Cross itself. Here is 
exhibited also the first and last open championship of the Crucified 
on that day of loneliness for Pilate s pitiable attempts can hardly 
be counted as such. 

39 And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed 
on him, saying, Art not thou the Christ ? save thyself and us. 
40 But the other answered, and rebuking him said, Dost thou 

xxm 39-43} ST LUKE 301 

not even fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation ? 
41 And we indeed justly ; for we receive the due reward of 
our deeds : but this man hath done nothing amiss. 42 And 
he said, Jesus, remember me when thou comest x in thy 
kingdom. 43 And he said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, 
To-day shalt thou be with me in Paradise. 

1 Some ancient authorities read into thy kingdom. 

39. one of the malefactors . . . railed on him. Matthew and Mark 
say both of them railed. Perhaps both did at first, and Dysmas 
(to call him by his traditional name) was softened by the bearing 
of Christ, and especially by the expression of forgiveness in v. 34. 
Papini (p. 543) surmises that the two robbers were jealous because 
they were not, as He, relieved of the weight of their crosses in the 
procession, and also because their companion was so obviously the 
focus of all attention and interest. 

Art not thou the Christ ? he mimics the railing of the rulers, v. 35. 

40-42. But the other answered. These verses are extraordinarily 
rich in implications. N.B. (a) his innate religious sense ( Dost 
thou not even fear God ? the first step in repentance) ; (6) his 
admission of his own criminality, and of the justice of his punish 
ment ; (c) his bold championship of Jesus and recognition of His 
innocence ; (d) his acceptance of the Crucified as Messiah, and 
belief in His kingdom beyond the grave. In a very short time his 
spiritual outlook had expanded and his belief matured, till he had 
outdistanced the most intimate of the disciples with their two years 
close companionship and special training. 

42. Jesus, remember me. The true reading : not as A.V. The 
only place where our Lord is so addressed by an individual in the 
Gospels : it sounds familiar ; and it has been suggested by 
Dr Lock (in an Address on the Seven Words ) that the two com 
panions in crucifixion may have been companions and comrades 
when young, in Galilee. The robber might, however, have read the 
name on the superscription (v. 38), as also the word King. 

in thy kingdom : or into thy kingdom. The reading is doubtful ; 
the meaning, ultimately, the same. 

43. Verily I say unto thee. The asseverative ap^v, common in 
the fourth Gospel in reduplicated form, occurs six times in St Luke, 
scattered over the whole Ministry, in utterances of solemn import 
iv 24, xii 37, xviii 17, 29, xxi 32, xxiii 43. Here it ushers in one of 
the most momentous sayings ever uttered. 

To-day shalt thou be with me in Paradise. Since the imagery of 
the Parable of Dives and Lazarus cannot be pressed (cf. note on 
xvi 19-31) as a picture of the World Beyond, this is the surest and 
the most definite revelation that has been given us as to the life 
after death. 

with me in Paradise. Paradise, a word of Persian origin 

302 ST LUKE [xxm 43-45 

= Park or Pleasure-garden, used in LXX for the Garden of 
Eden, is used here, clearly, as equivalent to the Abraham s 
bosom of xvi 22 as the place, or state, of the righteous departed 
awaiting the resurrection. Our Lord s presence in the abode of 
departed spirits (cf . 1 Pet iii 19) must have had, so to speak, a special 
quality during the hours between His death and His resurrection, 
in which Christian tradition placed the Harrowing of Hell. 

But that Christ s followers from the first believed that they, like 
Dysmas, would meet Him there at death, is clear from St Stephen s 
dying words (Ac vii 59) and St Paul s confident phrase penned 
when he was facing a probably imminent martyrdom to depart 
and be with Christ, which is very far better (Phil i 23). Affording 
to the age-long Christian belief and prayer it is Christ s presence 
there which gives the faithful departed refreshment, light, and 

St Paul, in one place, uses paradise for a region of Heaven 
itself (2 Cor xii 4), and it is possible that the same meaning attaches 
to it in Rev ii 7. This confusion of the name has persisted. Dante 
treats of the Earthly Paradise (Garden of Eden) in the last 
cantos of the Purgatorio ; of Heaven in the Paradiso. 

Our Lord s prompt answer, granting much more than was asked, 
makes it perilous for us to deny the possibility of a sincere and 
efficacious death-bed repentance. So Conradin, dying excommuni 
cate and fighting against the forces of the Church, can say (Purg. 
iii 122), The Infinite Goodness hath so wide embrace that it receiveth 
whosoever turneth unto it : 

... La bonta infmita ha si gran braccia, 
Che prende ci6 che si rivolge a lei. 

But any glib confidence in its possibility for ourselves is ruled out 
by the spectacle of the other Robber, precisely similarly situated, 
dying defiantly out of touch with the Saviour. 

44, 45. THE THREE HOURS DARKNESS. This is noted by all 
three Synoptists, as lasting from 12 noon to 3 p.m. St Mark (xv 25) 
states that the crucifixion began at the third hour (9 a.m.). The 
Lesser Hours of Christian devotion, Tierce, Sext, and None, 
were based on these points in our Lord s Passion. 

During the first three hours (9 a.m. to 12) probably occurred all 
that St Luke has recorded hitherto, including the first and second 
Word from the Cross, together with the farewell Word to His 
Mother and the Beloved Disciple in Jn xix 25, 26. 

During the Darkness perhaps near its end we must place 
the fourth Word, recorded by Matthew and Mark alone : My God, 
My God, why hast thou forsaken me ? The omission of this mysterious 
utterance of the Sin -bearer is a clear sign that Luke has not here 
made systematic use of the Marcan source. It is only partially 
compensated by his unique emphasis on the Agony in the Garden. 

XXIII 44-47] ST LUKE 303 

The Rending of the Veil (v. 45) is associated in Matthew and Mark 
with that central or fourth Word. 

After the Darkness we may place St John s fifth and sixth Words 
(Jn xix 28-30) and St Luke s seventh Word (v. 46). 

44 And it was now about the sixth hour, and a darkness 
came over the whole x land until the ninth hour, 45 Hhe sun s 
light failing : and the veil of the temple was rent in the 

1 Or, earth 2 Gr., the sun failing. 3 Or, sanctuary 

44. a darkness. Symbolical of, and appropriate to, the final 
victorious struggle of the Light of the World with the Powers 
of Darkness. Of. Col ii 15. 

45. the sun s light failing, i. e. from eclipse (the equivalent 
of the Greek word), which, as a matter of fact, could not be during 
a full moon ; or from gross and extraordinary atmospheric dis 
turbance. This is doubtless one of the grounds on which mediaeval 
writers based their belief that the weather was affected by demonia 
cal agency (cf. note on viii 24). But the traditional symbolism of 
Art makes the sun hide his face in shame and sorrow at the outrage 
upon his Creator. 

the veil of the temple : the heavy curtain, or rather curtains for 
there were two, a cubit apart that hung between the Holy Place 
and the Holy of Holies. These veils (see Edersheim, L. and T. 
ii, pp. 610-612) were of enormous size, 60 ft. x 30ft., and were reputed 
to need 300 priests to manipulate each. Edersheim sees a dis 
torted version of this occurrence in Tacitus (Hist. v. 13), Josephus 
(B. J. VI v 3), the Gospel according to the Hebrews (Jerome on 
Mat xxvii 51), and the Talmud. Plummer (ad loc.) points to Ac vi 1 
as suggesting the Evangelists source of information : the great 
company of the priests who very early joined the Church. If we 
may venture to discuss the symbolism of such an event, it might 
point (a) to the coming destruction of the Temple (cf . Josephus and 
Talmud above) and, beyond that, (6) the opening of access to the 
Holiest Place by the blood of Jesus (Heb x 19, 20). All that the 
whole Jewish system meant, all that was implied in the separation 
between God and man, came to an end. 

It is natural to connect the rending with the earthquake 
mentioned by Mat xxvii 51. 

46-49. THE END. 

46 1 And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, 
Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit : and having 
said this, he gave up the ghost. 47 And when the centurion 

1 Or, And Jesus,~^crying with a loud voice, said 

304 ST LUKE [xxm 46-49 

saw what was done, he glorified God, saying, Certainly this 
was a righteous man. 48 And all the multitudes that came 
together to this sight, when they beheld the things that were 
done, returned smiting their breasts. 49 And all his acquain 
tance, and the women that followed with him from Galilee, 
stood afar off, seeing these things. 

46. when Jesus had cried with a loud voice. This loud cry is 
mentioned by all three Synoptists, and may be identical with the 
sixth Word of Jn xix 30 the triumphal shout : It is finished. 
This shows that He was not dying of mere exhaustion. Indeed, 
such an utterance as Jn x 17, 18 strongly suggests (and is corrobo 
rated by St Matthew s strange expression he yielded up his spirit ) 
that our Lord s will-power was being intensely exerted in the 
opposite direction from that of a normal dying man, in whom 
nature struggles against dissolution. He gave up His life, not let 
it ebb from Him. Oblatus est quia ipse voluit. None of the Evan 
gelists says simply He died. 

Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit : cf. 1 Pet iv 19. 
A voluntary act (see note above), and cf. also Jn xix 30. This is one 
of the instances (cf. notes on xxii 27 and 32) in which St John 
records the act and St Luke the word. 

commend (-n-apariO^fjio.^ is the regular word for depositing 
something valuable with a friend. 

47. when the centurion saw what was done. The officer in charge 
of the execution and of the quaternion of soldiers. On centurions 
see note on vii 2. This man, whose name in tradition is Longinus, 
was converted by the manner of Christ s death (Mk, Lk) and by 
the accompanying portents (Mat). 

Certainly this was a righteous man : cf . v. 41 . Matthew and Mark 
have a son of God both may be true, or they may be varying 
reports of an exclamation that was in any case a convinced vindica 
tion of the supposed malefactor. 

48. that came together to this sight. The immense Passover 
crowds felt a revulsion of feeling, and showed striking signs of 
remorse. They came to it as a spectacle (tfewptav), but were 
overwhelmed rather than entertained. 

49. stood afar off : (we should translate But for And ) in 
contrast to the crowds who surged up and went away remorseful. 
Mk xv 40 names three of these women, Mary Magdalene, Mary 
mother of James, and Salome, and speaks of them in terms which 
suggest identification with the ministering ladies of viii 3. Mary, 
wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene are specified by St John as 
standing by the cross with the disciple whom He loved, earlier 
in the day. 

seeing these things. Here also, in the word used, is a contrast with 
v. 48. To His friends it was no spectacle. 

xxni 5 o- 5 6] ST LUKE 305 

Supreme among subjects of Christian Art stands the Crucifixion ; 
whether we consider the imaged Christ sculptured (i.e. the Crucifix) 
or the painted representation. The earlier painters viewed it more 
symbolically, and less historically or dramatically. The celebrated 
pictures by Perugino, in Florence and at Petrograd, are of this kind, 
and the strangely beautiful Antoniello da Messina in the National 
Gallery (No. 1166, reprod. by P. L. W.). Tintoretto introduces the 
more dramatic view, and with later painters it is common. The 
attitude of the penitent robber shows that St Luke is followed. 
There is a memorable representation by Luini on the rood-loft of 
S. Maria degli Angioli at Lugano : vast and realistic but devotional. 
Velasquez celebrated picture representing the Cry of Desolation 
(Mk xv 34) has been described as the climax of religious art in 
Spain (Jenner, op. cit., p. 147). In the pictures of the Entomb 
ment, and the Pietd or sorrow over the dead Christ, painters 
from Giotto onwards have placed the climax of the passionate 
sorrow of B.V.M., rather than during the crucifixion. There is a 
beautiful F. Francia in the National Gallery, and a most striking 
Mourning over the dead Christ, by a French painter of the nine 
teenth century. On pictures of the Crucifixion see further, Jameson, 
Hist, of O.L., vol. ii, pp. 136-212, and on the Crucifix, ib., pp. 

(b) 50-56 The Entombment 

On the whole subject of the Entombment see an interesting 
article by C. H. Turner in C.Q.R., vol. Ixxiv, pp. 288-310 (July 
1912), where the authenticity and consistency of the fourfold 
account of our Lord s sepulture are defended against the attack of 
K. Lake (Historical Evidence for the Resurrection of Jesus Christ : 
Williams & Norgate 1907). 

The Marcan account would seem to be derived from one eye 
witness (Joseph), to which St John has added details from another 
eyewitness (Nicodemus) (cf. Turner, op. cit., p. 301). Anything 
material added by St Luke may perhaps be due to Joanna, whom 
he alone mentions (xxiv 10). 

50 And behold, a man named Joseph, who was a councillor, 
a good man and a righteous 51 (he had not consented to 
their counsel and deed), a man of Arimathsea, a city of the 
Jews, who was looking for the kingdom of God : 52 this man 
went to Pilate, and asked for the body of Jesus. 53 And he 
took it down, and wrapped it in a linen cloth, and laid him in 
a tomb that was hewn in stone, where never man had yet 
lain. 54 And it was the day of the Preparation, and the 
sabbath 1 drew on. 55 And the women, which had come with 

1 Gr. began to dawn. 
L. 20 

306 ST LUKE [XXIII 50-53 

him out of Galilee, followed after, and beheld the tomb, and 
how his body was laid. 56 And they returned, and prepared 
spices and ointments. 

And on the sabbath they rested according to the com 

60. a man named Joseph, . . . (51) of Arimathcea. This is added 
by all four Evangelists to distinguish him from the other persons 
of that name known to the early Church, viz. our Lord s foster- 
father (Lk i 27) and His brother (Mk xiii 58), Barsabbas (Ac i 23), 
and Barnabas (Ac iv 36). Arimathea is usually identified with 
Ramathaim (1 Sam i 1), the birth-place of Samuel. A well-known 
legend brings St Joseph over to Britain and to Glastonbury with 
the Holy Grail. 

a councillor, i. e. member of the Sanhedrin, like Nicodemus 
(Jn vii 50) whom the fourth Evangelist associates with him in the 
burying of the Lord. C. H. Turner thinks that these two were 
among the deputation sent by the Sanhedrin to Pilate (Jn xix 31 sqq.) 
to ask that the three crucified ones should be put to death and taken 
down before nightfall, lest the Deuteronomic Law should be broken 
(Deut xxi 22, 23) by the victims being left hanging all through the 
approaching Sabbath : and that Joseph, on his own account, asked 
for the Body of the Saviour that he might dispose of it reverently 
(see v. 52). 

a good man and a righteous . . . Here St Luke greatly expounds 
the narrative ; St Mark simply describes Him as a well-to-do 
(euo-x^wv) councillor, using a word applied repeatedly by St Luke 
to gentlefolk in the Acts (Ac xiii 50, xvii 12). Unless St Luke is 
drawing on another source (? Joanna or Philip), he expands the 
Marcan notice in a moral sense. 

51. looking for the kingdom : like Simeon and Anna (ii 25, 38). 
St Matthew goes further and says he had become a disciple : not, 
however, presumably one of the recognized band (cf. secretly, 
Jn xix 38) else the holy women would surely have co-operated with 
him and not acted separately. 

53. he took it down. Here the fourth Gospel inserts mention of 
the co-operation of Nicodemus, bringing 100 Ib. weight of spices, 
myrrh, and aloes. 

wrapped it in a linen cloth. Clean linen says St Matthew, and 
St Mark states earlier (xv 46) that Joseph bought it for the occa 
sion. He uses a different verb ( swathed ). This is one of the rare 
instances where the first and the third Gospel vary the phraseology 
of the second by adopting the same synonym for the Marcan word. 
C. H. Turner thinks it points to Luke having seen the first Gospel 
at some very late stage of the composition of his own . . . and that 
he borrowed from it just a touch here and there (op. cit., p. 302). 

in a tomb that was hewn in stone. This is vaguer than the Marcan 

xxm ss-xxiv] ST LUKE 307 

phrase, which makes clear that it was hewn out of the rock. 
Like the cave in which Lazarus had been buried (Jn xi 38) it had 
a removable stone laid against the orifice (ib. xi 41). St Luke may 
not have realized all the details. Dr Sanday on the whole decides 
(Sacred Sites, pp. 76, 77) for the traditional site of the Holy Sepulchre. 
The tradition, however, does not go back beyond A. D. 356, when 
Constantine cleared away Hadrian s Temple of Venus, which must 
have diverted second-century pilgrims from the spot. 

where never man had yet lain. St Luke adds this to the Marcan 
account. St John adopts it (xix 41) and adds that it was in a 
garden in the place where he was crucified. St Matthew tells 
us that it was Joseph s own new tomb. He who had lain in a 
Virgin s womb, and had been wrapped after death in virgin linen, 
was fitly laid also in a virgin tomb. 

St Luke characteristically omits mention of the stone * here, 
as he means to refer to it later on (xxiv 2). 

54. the day of the Preparation, i. e. Friday. Trapao-Keu?/ is the 
name for Friday in the early Church writers. St John mentions 
the day here (xix 42) and also earlier (xix 31), as the ground for 
the deputation to Pilate. 

55. the women : including, presumably, the two Maries and 
Joanna of xxiv 4 ; cf . viii 2, 3. Matthew and Mark specify Mary 
Magdalene and another Mary (not the Blessed Virgin) : the text here 
seems to suggest a larger group. The fourth Gospel (Jn xix 25) 
names three Maries at the foot of the Cross. 

beheld the tomb, and how his body was laid. Peculiar to St Luke, 
this touch may have been derived from Joanna. 


(1) 1-12 Resurrection and First Appearances 

(2) 13-43 Walk to Emmaus, and Appearance in Upper Room 

(3) 44-53 Summary, to the Ascension 

St Luke s account of these final events is remarkably independent 
of the other three narratives. Of the 53 verses there are only 16 
which are in any sense paralleled in any of the other Gospels, and 
in these the parallel is not perfect. 

The first section, xxiv 1-12, has most of these coincidences 
(w. 1-6 and 9,10 are partly paralleled). All four Evangelists agree 
(a) in giving no picture of the act or process of resurrection itself, 
and (6) in making the first evidence arise out of the visit of the 
women to the tomb at early dawn, in which they found the great 
stone moved, and (c) in recording that angels were seen before the 
Lord Himself. 

But there are bewildering variations in the accounts. In the 
second section, xxiv 13-43, all the first 22 verses, describing the 
appearance of the Lord to Cleopas and his companion, are entirely 


308 ST LUKE [xxiv 1-12 

peculiar to St Luke, though the appendix to St Mark (xvi 12, 13) 
summarizes this episode. The following 7 verses (xxiv 36-43) 
evidently refer to the same appearance in the Upper Room which is 
described by St John in xx 19-23 and summarized in the appendix 
to St Mark (xvi 14 sqq.). But St Luke s details differ considerably 
from those given in the fourth Gospel. Finally, Lk xxiv 44-51 
describes the Ascension, in common with [Mk] xvi 19 : but it is 
possible that all the details of [Mk] xvi 9-20 were really taken from 
the third Gospel (cf. Bennett and Adeney, Biblical Introduction, 
pp. 302, 303). 

As to the problems of harmonizing which arise out of the four 
resurrection narratives, the reader may be referred to Westcott (on 
Jn xx 1), to Plummer s admirable note ad loc. (p. 546), and the 
present writer s Evidences of Christianity (2nd ed., Rivingtons 1913), 
ch v, esp. pp. 95-97 ; and Dr Hermitage Day, The Evidence for 
the Resurrection (S.P.C.K. 1906). It is no paradox to say that the 
difficulty of harmonizing the various resurrection narratives is in 
itself a security for their general truthfulness. Dishonest witnesses 
would have made the evidence more harmonious (Plummer). 
Attempts at harmonies which can never be more than conjectural 
because of the gaps in our knowledge show quite sufficiently that 
the discrepancies in the accounts (which are most marked in St Luke) 
are not inconsistent with the general truth of the story : and one 
feature brought out in each narrative is emphatically reassuring 
the incredulity of the earliest witnesses. There is no suggestion of 
excited expectancy such as might have induced hallucination. 

In two ways this section prepares for the Acts : (a) its general 
theme, the genuine Resurrection of Jesus Christ, is the main theme 
of St Peter s early preaching (Ac ii 24 sqq., cf . iv 10) ; so too St Paul 
at Athens preaches Jesus and the Resurrection, while in Ac i 22 
(as Lk xxiv 48) the primary function of the Apostolate is to be 
witnesses of the Resurrection. (6) The Lord s parting injunction 
is fraught with a promise the promise of Pentecost the climax to 
which (see Introd., pp. xxvi, xxxvii), in a sense, the Gospel leads up. 
The last verse of the Gospel, with its note of joy and praise, 
breathes intensely the atmosphere of the Holy Spirit, whose presence 
indeed broods over the Gospel from its opening page, and over the 
Acts, which Renan called un livre plein de joie. 

(1) 1-12 The Resurrection and First Appearances 

Here is a characteristic transposition, in which St Luke differs 
in his order from Matthew and Mark. They both (Mk xvi 1-8, 
Mat xxviii 1-8) name the women before describing their visit. This 
is one of eleven instances of transposition of material noted by 
Sir John Hawkins in Oxf. Stud., pp. 81-84 (see preliminary note on 
the Passion Narrative, above, p. 247 sq.). These transpositions 
not least when, as here, they involve nothing of importance go to 

xxiv i] ST LUKE 309 

show that St Luke has not made the same kind of use of the Marcan 
source in these later chapters as in the earlier part of the Ministry. 

(a) 1-11 The Women at the Sepulchre : The Empty Tomb 

XXIV But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, 
they came unto the tomb, bringing the spices which they had 
prepared. 2 And they found the stone rolled away from the 
tomb. 3 And they entered in, and found not the body x of the 
Lord Jesus. 4 And it came to pass, while they were per 
plexed thereabout, behold, two men stood by them in dazzling 
apparel : 5 and as they were affrighted, and bowed down 
their faces to the earth, they said unto them, Why seek ye 
2 the living among the dead ? 6 3 He is not here, but is risen : 
remember how he spake unto you when he was yet in Galilee, 
7 saying that the Son of man must be delivered up into the 
hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise 
again. 8 And they remembered his words, 9 and returned 
4 from the tomb, and told all these things to the eleven, and to 
all the rest. 10 Now they were Mary Magdalene, and Joanna, 
and Mary the mother of James : and the other women with 
them told these things unto the apostles. 11 And these words 
appeared in their sight as idle talk ; and they disbelieved them. 

1 Some ancient authorities omit of the Lord Jesus. 2 Gr. him that liveth. 

3 Some ancient authorities omit He is not here, but is risen. 

4 Some ancient authorities omit from the tomb. 

1. But on the first day, &c. The previous clause, beginning 
And on the Sabbath . . . (xxiii 56b), is really part of the same 
sentence, as is marked in the arrangement of paragraphs in R.V. 
Strictly, the chapter should have begun there. 

Here again is a momentous notice (cf . notes on xxii 20, 40). The 
First Day seems to have been continuously (if at first informally) 
observed by Christ s disciples (see Ragg, Evidences of Christianity, 
pp. 120, 121) since the octave of the Resurrection (Jn xx 26, 1 Cor 
xvi 2, and ? Rev i 10), and gradually to have superseded, even for 
Jewish Christians, the observance of the Saturday -sabbath. By the 
time of Ignatius (circa A. D. 110) keeping the Sabbath means 
Judaizing, and has become a reproach among Christians. Thus we 
have in the Christian Sunday a piece of continuous evidence for the 
primitive belief in the reality of our Lord s Resurrection. 

at early dawn. The variations in the four accounts are typical of 
the character of independent evidence. Mk xvi 2 when the sun 

310 ST LUKE [XXIV 1-6 

was risen. Mat xxviii 1, as it began to dawn. Jn xx 1 (of Mary 
Magdalene alone), while it was yet dark. 

bringing the spices. So Mark. Matthew has simply to see the 

2. the stone rolled away. A point on which all the Evangelists 
agree. Was the great stone moved to call the attention of the 
disciples to the interior of the tomb and the undisturbed linen 
wrappings ? Obviously it was not to let the sacred Body issue 
forth : it had done so already, even as some twelve hours later it 
penetrated and left the fast-closed Upper Room. Cf. note on v. 12. 

St Matthew describes how the movement of the stone happened : 
but he does not say the women saw the angel or the earthquake 
move it (Mat xxviii 2-4). According to St Luke and St Mark they 
entered before they saw any angel. 

3. they entered in. In all three Synoptic Gospels the Women 
inspect the interior of the tomb (for Mat xxviii 6b implies it). 
St John says St Mary Magdalene looked in ; he also speaks of a 
very careful inspection by St Peter (see note on v. 12) and St John. 

two men, i. e. Angels (cf . Ac i 10). Mark says a young man . . . 
arrayed in a white robe ; Matthew an angel . . . whose appearance 
was as lightning, and his raiment white as snow, outside the tomb 
(xxviii 3). John speaks of two angels appearing to Mary Magdalene 
alone, one at the head, and one at the feet, within the tomb. 

It is noticeable that Matthew speaks of two blind men where 
Luke and Mark have only one (cf. on xviii 35). In each case the 
spokesman among two, or the more prominent, may have been 
remembered and the other passed out of mind. But Matthew s 
source here seems largely independent of the other two, and of the 
women s report. 

5. bowed down their faces : as to supernatural beings ; cf . Josh v 13, 
Judg xiii 20, Tobit xii 16-22. This effect upon the women at 
once suggests that the men were Angels. Angels are often so 
named in the O.T., e. g. Josh v 13, Ezek xl 3, Dan ix 21, Zech i 8. 

Why seek ye . . . ? Mat xxviii 5, 6, Mk xvi 6 are quite differently 
worded, and independent of each other : all three Synoptists in 
substance the same. 

6. He is not here, but is risen. This is one of the phrases for 
which MS authority is doubtful. Possibly it may have been inter 
polated from Mat xxviii 6. 

when he was yet in Galilee. Mk xvi 7 and Mat xxviii 7 have here 
He goeth before you into Galilee. This is one of the instances of 
the use of the same word or phrase with a different meaning or 
context cited by Sir John Hawkins as testimony to the likelihood 
of an oral source side by side with the written document used by 
our first and third Evangelists (Hor. Syn., p. 73, cf. p. 67). Dr 
Bartlet (Oxf. Stud., p. 339) sees in it a token of a special written 
source. Godet (Eng. Tr. ii, pp. 79, 81) finds similar instances in 
Lk xi 39-44 when compared with Mat xxiii 25-27. 

xxiv 6-io] ST LUKE 311 

It is supposed that St Luke, finding a strange mention of Galilee 
here in the record (written or oral), and not being aware of any post- 
resurrection appearances except in the neighbourhood of Jerusalem, 
was constrained to interpret in this way. Some think that, for a 
like reason, he transferred the miracle of Jn xxi to the early Galilean 
Ministry. See note on v 111. 

It may be observed that the fourth Gospel deliberately redresses 
the balance of the Synoptists as to post-resurrection appearances 
in Galilee, as with regard to work in Judaea and Jerusalem during 
the Ministry. 

On the other hand, it is possible that St Luke is the more correct 
here. All three Synoptists as a matter of fact locate our Lord s 
first prediction of the Passion in Galilee. He may be reporting the 
women s remembrance of the words spoken (v. 8), and He goeth 
before you into Galilee be a corruption of the saying he gives ; 
natural in those who were aware of subsequent Galilean appearances. 

The first two Gospels actually record the earliest appearances 
at Jerusalem, [Mk] xvi 9, 12, 14, Mat xxviii 9 (where, however, the 
invitation to Galilee is repeated by the Lord Himself). 

7. saying that the Son of man. This apparently refers back to 
the first prediction of the Passion (ix 22), though the actual specifi 
cation of crucifixion enters into none of the predictions recorded 
by St Luke. 

8. they remembered his words. A point not noted by either of 
the other two Synoptists. It looks almost as though St Luke 
desired to emphasize the correctness of the account given in v. 6, 
on the testimony of one of the women probably Joanna. 

9. the rest. Cf. v. 33, them that were with them. It is from 
one of this Second Circle of the disciples that Dr Bartlet suggests 
(Oxf. Stud., p. 344) St Luke may have derived his special knowledge 
of the Seventy (xi 1 sqq.). 

10. Now they were, &c. On the position of this verse cf. note 
on xxiv 1-12. The variations in the enumeration of the holy women 
are interesting. Mary Magdalene is mentioned by all the Evangelists 
and conies first in each list ; Mary mother of James by all three 
Synoptists, Salome in Mark alone, Joanna in Luke alone. (May 
we suppose that Salome, Mark s informant, saw but one angel ; 
Joanna (v. 4) two ?) 

mother of James. So Mark here, but in xv 40 of James the 
less and of Joses ; Matthew has the other Mary. An interesting 
situation is developed if we identify (as is not impossible) Clopas 
with Alphaeus, and Mary of James with Mary (wife) of Clopas 
(Jn xix 25). This Mary will then be the mother of one Apostle, 
James son of Alphaeus, and perhaps of two ; for in Mark (ii 14) 
St Matthew is called Levi, son of Alphaeus. But neither of these 
identifications is certain. 

Joanna : recorder perhaps of xxiii 8-12, 27-31 as well as of the 
details just given. Cf. note on viii 3. 

312 ST LUKE [XXiv 12 

On artists representations of the Women at the Sepulchre see 
Jameson, Hist, of O.L., vol. ii, pp. 272-277. Notable is the early 
picture of Duccio at Siena which wonderfully depicts the awe of 
the Three Maries at the sight of the Angel. 

(b) 12 St Peter at the Sepulchre : cf . Jn xx 3-8 

12 x But Peter arose, and ran unto the tomb ; and stooping 
and looking in, he seeth the linen cloths by themselves ; and 
he 2 departed to his home, wondering at that which was come 
to pass. 

1 Some ancient authorities omit ver. 12. 

2 Or, departed, wondering with himself 

If this verse be genuine (see below) it adds one point more to the 
evidence that the empty Tomb was carefully inspected. It reads 
like an independent and imperfect report of the visit more fully 
described in the fourth Gospel : but is thought by some to be a 
later interpolation based on that passage, because the verse is 
omitted by Codex Bezae (D) and a certain group of minor MSS, 
and also by the old Latin and old Syriac versions. The evidence 
of the clothes is elaborated in Jn xx 5-8, and that of the empty 
Tomb is in Mat xxviii 12-15 made the subject of false witness and 
so explained away by our Lord s enemies. Dr Latham, The Risen 
Master, pp. 36, 37, 46, pictures our Lord s Body as melting out 
of the enwrapping linen in a spiritualized form, and so leaving it 
precisely in situ (see Ragg, Evid. Christ., pp. 93, 94). 

The textual evidence for the passage places it in the class styled 
by Westcott and Hort, Western non-interpolations (cases, i. e., 
in which the Western scribes have refrained from transmitting an 
interpolated addition which has attained a very general acceptance 
owing to the authority of Eastern MSS) ; of these there are no 
less than eight instances in this chapter. See Plummer s additional 
note, pp. 566-569. 

It is held by Blass (cf . Introd., p. xlii) that the longer form, which 
contains these eight passages, and also xxii 19b 20 (see note there), 
and the shorter, which omits these, are both genuine, representing 
two successive editions of the work from St Luke s own hand : the 
longer for Theophilus, the shorter for the use of the Roman Church. 

Here, according to Canon Streeter (Hibbert Journal, xx (Oct. 
1921), pp. 103-112) ended Proto-Luke St Luke s first edition 
which began at ch iii 1, and consisted of Q + special Lucan matter ; 
composed, he thinks, at Caesarea about A. D. 60 and re-edited and 
enlarged to the present dimensions some 20 years later. In iii 1 
xxii 14 the non-Marcan matter is estimated as 671 verses : the 
inserted Marcan matter as 346 verses at most. 

XXIV 13-35] ST LUKE 313 

(2) 13-43 The Walk to Emmaus : The Appearance in the 

Upper Room 

13-35. APPEARANCE TO THE Two DISCIPLES. The significance 
of this incident, which St Luke would seem to have derived from 
a special source (Cleopas, or Joanna, or Philip ?), and which, in 
Dr Latham s words, is strong in those latent and minute indica 
tions of verity that we have lately learned to prize, is well summed 
up in Dr Hermitage Day, op. cit., pp. 17-25. 

13 And behold, two of them were going that very day to 
a village named Emmaus, which was threescore furlongs from 
Jerusalem. 14 And they communed with each other of all 
these things which had happened. 15 And it came to pass, 
while they communed and questioned together, that Jesus 
himself drew near, and went with them. 16 But their eyes 
were holden that they should not know him. 17 And he said 
unto them, 1 What communications are these that ye have one 
with another, as ye walk ? And they stood still, looking sad. 
18 And one of them, named Cleopas, answering said unto 
him, 2 Dost thou alone sojourn in Jerusalem and not know the 
things which are come to pass there in these days ? 19 And 
he said unto them, What things ? And they said unto him, 
The things concerning Jesus of Nazareth, which was a prophet 
mighty in deed and word before God and all the people : 
20 and how the chief priests and our rulers delivered him up 
to be condemned to death, and crucified him. 21 But we 
hoped that it was he which should redeem Israel. Yea and 
beside all this, it is now the third day since these things came 
to pass. 22 Moreover certain women of our company amazed 
us, having been early at the tomb ; 23 and when they found 
not his body, they came, saying, that they had also seen 
a vision of angels, which said that he was alive. 24 And cer 
tain of them that were with us went to the tomb, and found 
it even so as the women had said : but him they saw not. 

1 Gr. What words are these that ye exchange one with another. 

2 Or, Dost thou sojourn alone in Jerusalem, and knowest thou not the things 

13. And behold, two of them. And behold suggests a Jewish 
(written) source. Neither of these two was a member of the Aposto 
lic Body (cf . v. 33) : the name of one is given us as Cleopas possibly 
indicating the source of Luke s information. Dr Sanday thinks 
he might belong to Herod s entourage. That the unnamed companion 

314 ST LUKE [XXiv 15-25 

was St Luke himself is improbable in view of the implications of 
Lk i 2, though it was an early conjecture. 

Emmaus. Josephus gives the name Ammaus to a village 5 miles 
west of Jerusalem now called Koldnijeh ; cf . Sanday, Sacred Sites, p. 30. 

15. Jesus himself drew near. Dante, in the lovely scene where 
the spirit of Statius joins himself and Virgil (Purg. xxi 7-9), uses 
this incident as a simile, suggesting (what is probably intended) that 
Christ overtook them from behind. Lo, even as Luke describes 
that Christ appeared to the two upon the road, after He had risen 
from the tomb . . . 

Ed ecco, si come ne scrive Luca 

Che Cristo apparve ai due ch erano in via 
Gia surto fuor della sepulcral buca. . . . 

16. their eyes were holden. Was it by His will ? If so, we must 
translate the next phrase in order that they might not recognize 
Him - - lest they should . . . But if it was due to some inherent 
difficulty in recognizing the glorified Christ (and there are four 
indications of such difficulty in the Gospels besides this : one of 
them, v. 37) ; then we must render so that they did not recognize 
Him ; which the Greek will equally bear. 

19-24. The conversation (which Cowper treats as a type of 
what true conversations should be) here becomes much more 
natural and animated if (as suggested by Dr Lock) we conceive the 
two friends tumbling over one another in their eagerness to tell 
the story. Cf. the picturesque phrase of v. 17 djm/3uAAeTe Trpo? 
dAA^JVous, words that ye exchange with one another, R.V. marg. : 
Jesus. What things do you mean ? 

19 Cleopas. Why, about Jesus of Nazareth 

Friend. Who in the eyes of God and all the people was a 
prophet mighty in deed and word 

20 G. And how the Chief Priests and our leading men gave him 
up to be sentenced to death, and afterwards crucified him 

21 F. But we were hoping that he was the destined deliverer of 

C. And besides all this, it is now three days since these things 


22, 23 F. And what is more, some of the women of our company 

amazed us ... which said that he was alive 

24 C. And some of us went to the tomb, and found it just as the 

women had said, but him they saw not. 


25 And he said unto them, foolish men, and slow of 
heart to believe Mn all that the prophets have spoken ! 26 Be 
hoved it not the Christ to suffer these things, and to enter 

1 Or, after 

XXIV 25-27] ST LUKE 315 

into his glory ? 27 And beginning from Moses and from all 
the prophets, he interpreted to them in all the scriptures the 
things concerning himself. 

25. slow of heart to believe in all, &c. Heart in Scripture 
includes intellect as well as feeling. On the side of feeling the two 
were right. It was loyalty and love that made them dwell on their 
disappointment ; and made them bold (or careless) enough to 
discuss the matter with one they supposed to be a stranger. It was 
to such loyalty and love that the post-resurrection appearances were 
vouchsafed, for such a temper alone could appreciate the Lord s 
resurrection-life and presence. But they had not allowed it free 
play. Though vv. 19-21 showed that they were ready to receive 
light from O.T. prophecy, they had not drawn conclusions for 
themselves. Slow of heart on the intellectual side. 

26. Behoved it not the Christ to suffer : cf . vv. 44, 46 and Ac iii 18, 
1 Pet ill. The predictions of the Passion, ix 22, &c., were doubtless 
based on our Lord s meditations on the O.T., and specifically on 
Isa liii and some of the Psalms. But the behoved goes behind 
prophecy into essential conformity with men s needs : cf. the 
similar phrase it became him in Heb ii 10. 

and to enter into his glory : at the moment of death ? or at His 
resurrection ? Or even (as Jn xiii 31 seems to indicate) at the Last 
Supper ? 

27. beginning from Moses. Surely not an array of proof-texts, 
but rather an interpretation of the general line of Messianic Pro 
phecy. We have no right to draw a blank cheque on this com 
prehensive reference in support of our favourite proof-texts (any 
more than on Ac i 3 in favour of our best-loved rites and ceremonies) ; 
but surely it justifies us, e. g., in assuming that the first generation 
of Christians (cf. Ac viii 35) were not deluded in applying Isa liii 
to our Lord s atoning sacrifice ? 

28 And they drew nigh unto the village, whither they were 
going : and he made as though he would go further. 29 And 
they constrained him, saying, Abide with us : for it is toward 
evening, and the day is now far spent. And he went in to 
abide with them. 30 And it came to pass, when he had sat 
down with them to meat, he took the 1 bread, and blessed it, 
and brake, and gave to them. 31 And their eyes were opened, 
and they knew him ; and he vanished out of their sight. 
32 And they said one to another, Was not our heart burning 
within us, while he spake to us in the way, while he opened to 

us the scriptures ? 

1 Or, loaf 

316 ST LUKE [XXIV 29-33 

29. Abide with us. An instinctive yearning. Their hearts had 
already recognized Him (cf . v. 32) though their minds lagged behind. 
The verse forms the text and starting-point of one of the best loved 
of our modern hymns Lyte s Abide with me. 

30. he took the bread, and blessed it. The Middle Ages, following 
St Augustine and Theophylact, identified this act with the eucharistic 
blessing ; but apart from the unlikelihood of a celebration between 
the Last Supper and Pentecost, it seems improbable that these two 
can have been present at the Institution (see note on xxii 14). 
More likely is it that the eucharistic blessing of the Great Thursday 
was a sort of climax giving a new and supreme significance to the 
Lord s daily acts of blessing before distributing food to His family 
of disciples. This climax would be foreshadowed by the solemnity 
of special occasions like the Feeding of the Five Thousand (cf . ix 16), 
which in the fourth Gospel is clearly prophetic of the Eucharist. 

Christian Art has not often figured this scene as a Eucharist : 
cf. Carpaccio s picture in S. Salvadore, Venice, and Rembrandt s in 
the Louvre, which Mrs Jenner (op. cit., p. 162) characterizes as 
Rembrandt s nearest approach to a noble picture. The National 
Gallery has two pictures of this episode, both of the sixteenth 
century : No. 753, Altobello Melone, portraying the journey to 
Emmaus, and No. 172, Caravaggio, picturing the meal. Earlier is 
Duccio s picture at Siena. The meeting is thought to be sym 
bolized in Fra Angelico s beautiful representation, over the Guest 
Room door at S. Marco, of two Dominican pilgrims welcoming the 
Saviour. See further, Jameson, Hist . of 0. L., vol. ii, pp. 287-297. 

31. vanished. St Luke uses a poetical word, a^avros, which 
occurs here only in the N.T. This vanishing power of His resur 
rection body is only here directly mentioned, though it is implied 
after the appearances of Jn xx 23 and 29 (not necessarily in Mat 
xxviii 10, Jn xx 17, where those who have seen Him are sent away 
on errands). It is the counterpart of the power of suddenly becoming 
visible (Lk xxiv 36, Jn xx 19, 26). 

32. Was not our heart burning ? This gives the key to the self- 
revelation of Jesus which had just occurred. It was possible 
because their hearts were in tune to receive it. 


33 And they rose up that very hour, and returned to Jeru 
salem, and found the eleven gathered together, and them that 
were with them, 34 saying, The Lord is risen indeed, and 
hath appeared to Simon. 35 And they rehearsed the things 
that happened in the way, and how he was known of them in 
the breaking of the bread. 

33. they rose up that very hour: for the expression, cf. xiii 31. 

xxiv 33-43] ST LUKE 317 

They cannot contain themselves for joy, and feel they must share 
it with the brethren at Jerusalem. Cf . 2 Kgs vii 9. 

the. eleven. A loose expression (for Thomas was absent, Jn xx 24) 
but easily intelligible. 

and them that were with them: cf. all the rest, v. 9, and note 
there. The band would doubtless include the women, and perhaps 
also some or all of the hundred and twenty of Ac i 15. 

34. hath appeared to Simon. The obvious reference (as sug 
gested above) is to one of the Eleven, Simon Peter. St Luke, 
who after the choice of the Twelve habitually speaks of this Apostle 
as Peter (viii 45, ix 28 sqq., xii 41, xviii 28, xxii 8, 54 sqq., xxiv 12), 
names him as Simon before his apostleship (iv 38, v 3 sqq.) and 
always in the mouth of our Lord (v 10, xxii 31). This appearance 
to Cephas is named by St Paul in 1 Cor xv 5, and may perhaps 
be numbered among the Pauline touches of St Luke s Passion Story. 
It is curious that none of the Gospels records a special appearance to 
the Lord s Blessed Mother. That such was vouchsafed has been 
largely assumed in Church tradition, and Christian Art has taken 
up the theme. 

35. And they : adduced their own piece of evidence to strengthen 
the joyful conviction. [Mk] xvi 13 strangely says Neither believed 
they them : a touch that militates against the theory that [Mk] 
xvi 12, 13 is simply a summary of Lk xxiv 13 sqq. 

in the breaking of the bread. The same phrase in Ac ii 42 describes 
one of the four fundamental points of Pentecostal Church Life. 
There its reference seems to be to Eucharist or Agape or both. 
Here the reference itself is non-eucharistic (see note on v. 30) ; but 
the appearance referred to and the pondering on it may have helped 
the Apostolic Church to a fuller development of eucharistic doctrine. 


36 And as they spake these things, he himself stood in the 
midst of them, %nd saith unto them, Peace be unto you. 
37 But they were terrified and affrighted, and supposed that 
they beheld a spirit. 38 And he said unto them, Why are ye 
troubled ? and wherefore do reasonings arise in your heart ? 
39 See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself : handle me, 
and see ; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye behold 
me having. 40 2 And when he had said this, he shewed them 
his hands and his feet. 41 And while they still disbelieved 
for joy, and wondered, he said unto them, Have ye here any 
thing to eat ? 42 And they gave him a piece of a broiled 
fish. 3 43 And he took it, and did eat before them. 

1 Some ancient authorities omit and saith unto them, Peace be unto you. 

- Some ancient authorities omit ver. 40. 

* Many ancient authorities add and a honeycomb. 

318 ST LUKE [XXiv 3 6- 43 

36. he, himself stood in the midst of them : cf . Jn xx 19. It seems 
most probable that these two passages refer to the same Appearance, 
though each Evangelist emphasizes different aspects of the scene. 

Peace be unto you. The ordinary Hebrew salutation, but fraught 
with special meaning in Jesus s mouth (Jn xiv 27, xvi 33), and with 
memories of that same Upper Room on the previous Thursday. 
Henceforth it was to become a regular factor in the Apostolic greet 
ings (see N.T. Epistles, passim), in combination (if we may count 
xapa and xpts as cognates) with the Gentile grace implied in 
our Lord s other recorded post-resurrection salutation All hail 
(xatpere, Mat xxviii 9). 

Whether it is a genuine part of Luke s original text is doubtful : 
this is one of D s omissions, and Westcott and Hort s Western 
non-interpolations. See note on v. 12. It may be an interpolation 
from Jn xx 19. 

37. terrified and affrighted. Even Peter, and the two recently 
arrived, who had already seen Him. There was nothing alarming 
in being overtaken on the road : but the sudden appearance in a 
locked and bolted room (Jn xx 19) startled them, as had the sight 
of Him walking on the waters in the storm (Mk vi 49). John has 
no hint of this only their joy at seeing Him : cf. v. 41. Mk xvi 8 
has a similar description of the alarm of the women at finding the 
tomb empty. 

39. See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself. Not a flimsy 
ghost probably alluding to those infallible identification marks, 
the prints of the nails. There is an apparent contrast here between 
St Luke s description of our Lord s risen Body and his friend 
St Paul s description of the spiritualized resurrection-body in 
1 Cor xv 37, 44, 50. See further, w. 42, 43. The same solidity, 
amenable to touch as well as sight, is suggested by Jn xx 27. 

40. And when he had said this, he shewed them his hands and his 
feet. Of very doubtful MS authority : possibly an adaptation of 
Jn xx 20. 

41. disbelieved for joy, and wondered. Here Luke is the psycho 
logist. Like so many other indications in the Resurrection docu 
ments (cf., e. g., w. 5, 11, 12, 21-24) it cuts across the argument 
that the Appearances may have been hallucinations coming upon 
minds predisposed, in whom the wish was father to the thought. 

42. 43. ... a piece of a broiled fish. And he took it, and did eat. 
This trait in the story, to those who witnessed it most convincing, 
is for us the most difficult. We can only suppose it an accommoda 
tion to the needs of their faith. Cf. E. R. Bernard, Hastings D.B., 
art. Resurrection, p. 234. 

In Ac x 41 Peter speaks of us who did eat and drink with him 
after he rose from the dead. But that might be satisfied by Jn xxi 13 
where He feeds His disciples with fish and bread by the lake-side. 
We must remember that the narrator is (a) Luke the physician, the 
most scientific of the Evangelists, and (6) the companion of the 

XXIV 44-53] ST LUKE 319 

writer of 1 Cor xv and 2 Cor v 1, and (c) the only Evangelist who 
plainly speaks of our Lord s resurrection-body as vanishing at 
will. We have not the data for judging exactly the nature of that 
body nor the degree of its correspondence with that which may 
one day be ours by His grace : only we may safely conclude that 
it is, like the natural body but more perfectly, a medium of 
expression of the spirit and personality, and that it has gifts and 
capacities from our present point of view supernatural. 

(3) 44-53 Summary from Easter to the Ascension 

From any indication in the Gospel itself all this might have 
occurred on the same day, or rather night. It was already late 
when the two disciples started on their 5-mile walk back to Jerusa 
lem. Then some time must be allowed for the incidents of vv. 33^43. 
May Luke have pictured a repetition of the nightly walk up the 
slope of the Mount of Olives of the previous week ? (xxi 37) : the 
disciples, now a larger band, and with a very different outlook, 
filing down and up in the moonlight, as on the fatal Thursday, from 
the Upper Room, over Kidron and past Gethsemane ? (But see 
Plummer s note, p. 564, on w. 50-53.) If so, he acquired much 
more detailed information before writing Ac i, and was able to 
correct his error, realizing that the Appearances had spread over 
40 days. Ac i 1-12 is thus our final authority for the Great Forty 
Days, representing the Evangelist s more mature judgement. 

More probably, however, he has simply left vague what he 
found vague, and refused, as so often in the Great Interpolation 
(ix 51 x viii 1 1 ) , to define beyond the point allowed by his information . 
It will then be a summary of sayings and movements spread over 
an indefinite time. Accepting this point of view, it is natural for 
the harmonist to insert here (and there is ample margin for them 
in Ac i 3) the Galilean incidents of Jn xxi 1-23 and Mat xxviii 16-20. 

(a) 44-49 The Last Commission 

44 And he said unto them, These are my words which 
I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, how that all 
things must needs be fulfilled, which are written in the law 
of Moses, and the prophets, and the psalms, concerning me. 
45 Then opened he their mind, that they might understand 
the scriptures ; 46 and he said unto them, Thus it is written, 
that the Christ should suffer, and rise again from the dead the 
third day ; 47 and that repentance J and remission of sins 
should be preached in his name unto all the 2 nations, beginning 

1 Some ancient authorities read unto. 

1 Or, nations. Beginning from Jerusalem, ye are, witnesses 

320 ST LUKE [XXIV 44-47 

from Jerusalem. 48 Ye are witnesses of these things. 49 And 
behold, I send forth the promise of my Father upon you : 
but tarry ye in the city, until ye be clothed with power from 
on high. 

44. And he said unto them. At first sight a continuation of the 
narrative of vv. 36-43. But see preceding note. 

my words which I spake unto you. Like the angel s message (v. 6) 
this refers back to such utterances as ix 22, xviii 31-33, and doubtless 
also many such sayings unrecorded in our Gospels. To the two 
on the road to Emmaus He had already given the light on the O.T. 
which He is now about to grant to the larger group, expanding His 
earlier predictions of the Passion and Resurrection. 

while I was yet with you. The same phrase is used in Ac ix 39 
of dead Dorcas, looking back to the time before her decease. It 
throws light on the incident of the broiled fish (v. 43), suggesting 
that He is not there eating for need of material food as in the old 
days : only for witness. He has not come back to be with them 
as Dorcas would come back, as Lazarus, and Jairus s daughter, and 
the young man of Nam to share with them again the conditions 
of the life after the flesh. He has passed into another state. His 
relations with them are changed ; His visible appearances inter 
mittent. Yet in a spiritual (and therefore more real) sense, He is 
to be with them all the days, even to the consummation of the 
age, Mat xxviii 20. 

the law of Moses, and the prophets, and the psalms. Moses and 
the Prophets alone were mentioned in v. 27. This threefold 
division (cf. Preface to Ecclesiasticus) is probably intended to 
embrace the O.T. canon in its entirety : the Law = Pentateuch ; 
the Prophets, (a) Former = Joshua 2 Bangs (excluding Ruth), 
(b) Later = Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and the Twelve (Minor) 
Prophets ; Psalms standing for the Writings ( Hagiographa ) = 
all the other books, including Ruth, Chronicles, Ezra-Nehemiah, 
and Daniel. The Psalter formed a leading factor of this last group, 
especially from the point of view of the Messianic Hope, and in 
Hebrew Bibles usually heads the third Canon. This last group, 
completing the circle of the Hebrew Scriptures, was not, as a matter 
of fact, formally canonized till about A. D. 90, but by the first 
century all those writings were generally recognized as Scriptures. 

Our Lord here sets His seal on the belief, so strong in Christian 
thinkers of all ages, that the permanent value of the O.T. as a whole 
lies in its witness to Christ. Cf. Jn v 39, Ye search the scriptures, 
because ye think that in them ye have eternal life ; and these are they 
which bear witness of me. 

47. and that repentance . . . should be preached . . . This is what 
we find St Peter doing after Pentecost : Ac ii 38, iv 12. Is this the 
conclusion of His summary of O.T. teaching ; or does a special 


injunction of our Lord s begin here ? It is difficult to find chapter 
and verse in the O.T. for this preaching of repentance in the Messiah s 
name, though such passages as Mai iv 5, 6 strike the same note. 

49. And behold, I send forth, &c. The Pentecostal Gift of Ac ii. 
This is one of the main scriptural grounds for the famous Filioque 
clause, which asserts of the Holy Spirit that He proceedeth from 
the Father and the Son. 

tarry ye in the city : cf . Ac i 4. Apparently inconsistent with 
Mat xxviii 16-20 where the Eleven, and Jn xxi where several 
of the Apostles, meet the Lord (by appointment, Mat) in Galilee. 
But the difficulty vanishes if these words were spoken after the 
return from Galilee. See prelim, note on vv. 44-53. 

(b) 50-53 The Ascension. Cf. [Mk] xvi 19, Ac i 9 

50 And he led them out until they were over against 
Bethany : and he lifted up his hands, and blessed them. 
51 And it came to pass, while he blessed them, he parted 
from them, J and was carried up into heaven. 52 And they 
Worshipped him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy : 
53 and were continually in the temple, blessing God. 

1 Some ancient authorities omit and was carried up into heaven. 

2 Some ancient authorities omit worshipped him, and. 

50. over against Bethany. The actual scene of the Ascension is 
probably the summit of the Mount of Olives, where the Church has 
been erected above Bethany to the westward, and about a mile 
distant from it or else one of the lower ridges nearer the main 
road from Jerusalem. It is not a priori probable that He would 
choose a public place, too near a frequented track. 

51. while he blessed them. Beautifully recorded as the Master s 
last visible act. This is not repeated in the Acts account, though 
a blessing is implied in His last recorded speech there : Ye shall 
be my witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea and Samaria, 
and unto the uttermost part of the earth (Ac i 8). 

he parted from them. The same phrase is used as in Gethsemane 
(xxii 59), which has led some who on MSS authority doubt the 
genuineness of the next clause to regard this parting as just like 
the previous ones except for its being the last. 

was carried up into heaven. The MS evidence against this clause 
is that of the Western non-interpolations (see note on v. 12) 
reinforced by N ; but the circumstantial evidence in its favour 
is of the strongest. Westcott and Hort, who double-bracket it 
in their Text, claim that the Ascension did not apparently lie 
within the proper scope of the Gospel, but St Luke himself, in 
Ac i 1-2 asserts that the terminus ad quern of his former treatise 
was the day in which he was received up. St Matthew does not 

L. 21 

322 ST LUKE [XXIV 52, 53 

record the Ascension, but in xxvi 64 he makes Christ foretell His 
session at the right hand of power. St John also omits to narrate 
the fact, but his references to it are the most numerous and explicit 
of all (Jn i 51, vi 62, xiii 3, 33, xiv 28, xvi 5, 10, 18). St Mark s 
genuine narrative does not record it : but that is confessedly incom 
plete, and the appendix [Mk] xvi 19 does. For the frequent refer 
ences in St Paul, St Peter, and the Epistle to the Hebrews see the 
article Ascension in Hastings D.C.G. i, esp. p. 126. For the 
doctrine of the Ascension see that and Denney, s.v. in Hastings 
D.B. i. 

Early representations of the Ascension depicted only the feet 
of Christ as visible. Fra Angelico was the last to use this device. 
On the Ascension in Christian Art, see Jameson, Hist, of 0. L. t 
vol. ii, pp. 305-313. 

52. they worshipped him. Of . Mat xxviii 17. 

53. were continually in the temple, blessing God. This, and the 
pieceding clause form a perfect conclusion to St Luke s book, which 
ends, as it began, on the note of joy and blessing. Cf. Introd., 
p. xxxix. 


Abilene : 44 

Ablutions, Pharisaic : 174 

Abomination of Desolation : 263 

Abraham : 47, 195, 222 sq., 302 

Abyss : 111 

Accuracy of St. Luke: xii, xviiisq., 

xxx, xxxiv, 145 
Adeney, Dr W. F., St Luke ( Century 

Bible ) : xli, 55, 78, 90, 101 
Adultery, Woman taken in : see Pericope 
Advent : 129, 183, 229 sqq., 262-271 
Agape: 317 
Agony : 186, 284 sqq. 
A in Karim : 18 
Albertinelli : 17 
Alexandrinus, Codex (A) : 31 
Allegory : 75, 183 
Allen, W. C. (in Oxford Studies, q.v.) : 

xxiii, 52, 87 
Alphaeus: 79,311 
Am ha-aretz : 175 
American Journal of Theology: see 

Easton, Michael, Palmer, Torry, 

Votaw, Warschauer 
Angelico, Fra : xxxiii, 12, 34, 277, 286, 

316, 322 
Angels : xxviii, 9, 150, 209. 213, 259, 

284, 310 sq. 

Anna : 38 sqq., 114, 235, 306 
Annas : 43 sqq., 288 sq. 
Annunciation : xxxii, 11-16 
Antoniello da Messina : 305 
Apocalypse of Q : 230 
Apocalyptic writings : 24, 203, 269 sq. 
Apostles : 79, 174 
call of : xlviii, 66, 79 
Appearances after Resurrection : 

313 sqq. 

Avamaisms : xxi, xxxvii, xlvi, 95> 143 
Archelaus : 26, 188, 245 sq. 
Aretaeus : 71, 135, 157 
Aretas : xxxii, 206 

Argument a fortiori : 75, 163, 177, 233 
Art : xxviii, xxxii sqq., 12, 317, et 


Articles, the Thirty-nine : 226 
Ascension : xlv, lii, 143, 321 sq. 

Asceticism : 26, 39, 94 

Atonement, the : 300 sqq., 315 

- Day of : 75, 221, 235 

Augustine, St : 50, 125, 204, 316 

Augustus : 27, 246 

Authorship of third Gospel : xi-xvii 

Ave Maria : 13 sq. 

Aytoun, R. A. : The Ten Hymns of the 
Nativity in their original language 
(Journ. Theol. Studies, 1917, vol. 
xviii) : 6, 20, 22, 31, 35 

Azariyeh, El ( = Bethany) : 159 

Azazel: 167 

Badcoek, F. J. (Journ. TJteol. Studies, 

July 1921) : 132 
Banquet : see Feast 
Baptism : 46, 124 

of infants : 239 sq. 

of Jesus : 49 

symbolic : 185, 286 
Bartholomew : 80 
Bartimaeus : 241 

Bartlet, Dr J. Vernon (Encycl. Brit.): 
xxiv, xxx 

(Oxford Studies, q.v.) : 65, 104, 120, 
135, 137, 140, 143, 156, 241, 247, 257, 
281, 310 

Bassano, Jacopo : 158, 210, 221 

Beatitudes : 80 sqq. 

Bebb, LI. J. M. (Hastings D.B., vol. iii, 

art. Luke, Gospel of ) : xliii 
Beelzebub : 153, 165 sqq. 
Bellini, Giovanni : 33, 283 
Benedictus : 22-25, 213, 251 
Benefactors : 280 
Bengel : 93 
Bernard, E. R. (Hastings D.B., art. 

Resurrection ) : 257, 318 

T. D., Songs of the Holy Nativity 
(Macmillan 1895) : xlvii, 5 sqq., 14 

Bethabara: 198,227 

Bethany : 158 sqq., 161, 249, 253, 321 

beyond Jordan : 198 
Bethlehem: 28 
Bethphage: 249 
Bethsaida : 122 sq., 149 




Bethshean: 227 

Betrayal : 273 sq., 286 sq. 

Betrothal: 29 

Bezae, Codex : xiii sq., xli sq., 44, 49, 

133, 181, 232, 278, 299, 300, 312, 318 
Bigg, Dr C., Wayside Sketches : 263 
Blasphemy against Holy Ghost : 177 
Blass, F., Philology of the Gospels (Mac- 

millan 1898) : xiii, xxv, xliii, 28, 49, 

77, 161, 226, 263, 271, 312 

Evangelium Secundum Lucam (Teub- 
ner 1897) : xiii sq., 263, 272 

Blindness cured : 93, 241 sq. 
Bloody Sweat : xliii, li, 286 
Boanerges : 144, 157 
Bolton, The Madonna of St Luke 

(Putnam 1895) : xxviii 
Boniface VIII, Pope : 282 
Border of garment : 115 
Botticelli, Sandro : 32 
Box, G. H., The Virgin Birth of Jesus 

(Pitman, 1916) : 14, 32, 106 
Boyhood of Christ : 40 sq., 162, 207 
Bread, Breaking of : 278, 316 sq. 
Breakfast: 172 
Brethren of our Lord : 105 
Brooke, Prof. A. E. : 20 
Burkitt, Prof. F. C., Sources for the Life 

of Jesus : xxiv 

The Gospel History and its Trans 
mission : 35, 294 

(Proceedings of Brit. Academy, 
1911-12) : 42 

Byzantine art : 277 

Cadbury, Prof. C. C., Harvard Studies, 
No. vi (Oxford Press 1920) : xxxi, 
110, 135, 240 

Expositor, June 1921 : xviii, 292 
Caesar, Augustus : see Augustus 

Julius : xii 

Caesarea Philippi : 125, 131, 149 

Caiaphas : 43 sq., 289 sq. 

Calamity, lessons of : 187 sqq. 

4 Calvary : 298 

Camel and needle s eye : 240 

Canon of the O.T. : 320 ; cf . 258 sq. 

Canticles of the Gospel : 5 sqq. 

Capernaum : 62 sq., 67, 90, 149 

Caracci: 210 

Carob tree : 212 

Carpaccio, Vittore : 34, 73, 316 

Carpenter, S. C., Christianity according 

to St Luke (S.P.C.K. 1919): xliii, 


Catacombs : 209 
Catechist, Catechumen : 3, 4 
Census : 27 
Centurion : 90, 304 
Charles VIII: 263 

Chase, Bishop, The Credibility of the Acts 
(Macmillan 1902) : xxi, xxxi 

The Creed and the N.T. (Macmillan 
1920): 13 

Texts and Studies, vol. i, No. 3 ( The 
Lord s Prayer in the Early Church ) : 

The Gospels in the Light of Historical 
Criticism (1914) : xx 

Chasidim : 20, 70, 202. 221 

Cheyne, T. K. : 42 

Child, childhood, children: 41, 163, 


Chorazin : 149 
Christ, the: 30, 126, 293. See also 

Chronology of the Ministry : xlv, 44, 

141, 194, 198, 223, 226 sq., 275 
Chrysostom, St : 92 
Church : 210, 219 
Church Quarterly Review (see Turner, 

C. H.) : 305 
Chuza: 101 
Circumcision : 21, 23 
Cities, priestly : 18 
Citizenship, heavenly : 151 

Roman : 282 

Clement of Alexandria, St : xlvi 

of Rome, St : 266 
Cleopas : xxi, 313 sqq. 

Climax of Galilean Ministry : 118, 123 

Clopas: 304, 311 

Cobbold, G. A., Tempted like as we arc 

(London 1900) : 53 
Colony, Roman : xv 
Coming One : 92 
Commandments : 154, 239 
Commission, of Twelve : 119 sqq. 

of Seventy : 145 sqq. 

Common Prayer, Book of : 24, 147, 183, 

237, 240, 242 
Competition : 87, 137 
Conder, Colonel : 298 
Confession, the Great : 125 sq. 
Confiteor: 236 
Consolation of Israel : 35 
Constantino the Great : 298, 307 
Contentions among the XII : 138, 278 
Converts to Christianity : 186 
Corban : 174, 189 
Corn, plucking of : 176 sq. 
Council, priestly : 272 
Courses of priests : 24 
Covenant, the New : 279 
Coverdale: 20 
Covetousness : 179 sq. 
Cowper: 314 
Creed, old Roman : 4 
Crivelli: 12 
Cross : 128, 206, 247, 296 



Crucifix : 305 

Crucifixion : li, 128, 256, 298-305 

Psalms : 299 sq. 

Cubit: 181 

Cup, symbolic : 186, 286 

Cups of Passover : 277 sqq. 

Cyrene : xiii, 296 

Cyril, St, of Jerusalem : 131 

Dalman : 28 

Damien, Fr. : 69 

Dante : viii, xxx, 16, 24, 82, 95, 108, 

150, 159, 163, 178, 219, 221 sq., 236, 

239, 257, 282, 296, 302, 314 
Darkness, three hours : 269, 303 
Date of composition : xviii sqq., 251, 

263 sq. 
Daughters of Jerusalem : xli, li, 247, 

David: 77 

House of : 13 

Son of : 165, 242, 246, 260 sq. 

Throne of : 14 

Davidic descent of Christ : 13 sqq., 28, 

50, 106 
Day, Dr Hermitage, The. Evidence, for 

the Resurrection (S.P.C.K. 1906) : 

306, 313 

Days of the Son of Man : 229 sq. 
Dayspring : 25 
Dead raised : 91, 117 
Death of Christ : 304 
Dedication Festival : xlix sq., 9 
Defilement, ceremonial : 156 
Deissmann, Light from the Ancient East : 

28, lllsq., 120, 150, 166, 178, 187, 

200, 230, 234, 280 
Demoniac : 64, 108 sqq., 150 
Denarius : 98, 124, 157, 257 
Denney, Prof. J., in Hastings D.B. 

(art. Ascension ) : 322 
Departed, condition of : 220 sqq. 
Deuteronomy : 54, 145, 147 
Diatessaron : see Tatian 
Didache : 236, 277 
Dio Cassius : 44 
Diocletian : 177 
Dioscorides : xxxi, 71, 157, 225 
Disciples : 79, 82, 138 
Discipleship, qualifications for : 82 sq., 

128 sq., 206 
Dives: 221 

Divinity of Jesus : xxiii, 71, 152 
Divorce: 219 

Doctors, Christ among : 40 sqq. 
Dogs: 222 
Donatello: 26 
Donatists: 204 
Dorcas: 117,320 

Doublets : xix, 104, 145, 178, 228, 

246, 261 
Dove: 49 
Drachma : 246 
Dropsy: 199 

Duccio : 12, 277, 286, 312, 316 
Diirer, A. : 210 
Dust, shake off : 121, 148 
Dysmas : 301 sq. 

Eagles (vultures) : 232 

Ears to hear : 102, 206 

Earthquake : 303, 310 

Easter : xlv, li, 307 sqq. 

Easton, B. S. (Amer. Journal of Theol., 
July 1915, Trial of Jesus ) : 288 

Ebionism : xli, 62, 206 

Ecclesiasticus : xlvi, 24 

Eclipse: 269 

Edersheim, Life and Times of Jesus the 
Messiah (Longmans 1897, 2 vols.) : 
37, 45, 57, 59, 62, 64 sqq., 67, 73, 83, 
102, 113, 128, 130, 149, 150. 158, 166, 
172 sq., 178, 182, 187, 190, 192, 194, 
198 sq., 200, 206, 208, 211 sq., 215 sq., 
222 sq., 226, 233, 236, 238 sq., 
242 sqq., 253 sq., 256 sq., 260, 262, 
274 sq., 288 sq., 291 sq., 303 

Elephantiasis, 69 

Elijah : 10, 62, 131, 144, 166 

Eliot, George : 217 

Elisabeth : 8 sqq. 

Elisha : 62, 124, 145, 147 

Emmaus : Hi, 314 

Encyclopaedia Biblica: see, Robinson, 

Encyclopaedia Britannica: see Bartlet, 

Encyclopaedia of Religion and Ethics 
(Hastings) : see Reid 

Enemies, love to : 84 

Enoch, Book of : 72 

Enrolment : 27 

Entombment : 305 sqq. 

Ephraem Syrus : 50 

Epileptic: 135 

Epiphanius : 29, 106, 276