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Soon afterwards (εν τω καθεξης). In 7:11 we have εν τω εξης. This word means one after the other, successively, but that gives no definite data as to the time, only that this incident in 8:1-3 follows that in 7:36-50. Both in Luke alone.
That (κα). One of Luke's idioms with κα εγενετο like Hebrew wav. Went about (διωδευεν). Imperfect active of διοδευω, to make one's way through (δια, οδος), common in late Greek writers. In the N.T. here only and Ac 17:1 .
Through cities and villages (κατα πολιν κα κωμην). Distributive use of κατα (up and down). The clause is amphibolous and goes equally well with διωδευεν or with κηρυσσων (heralding) κα ευαγγελιζομενος (evangelizing, gospelizing). This is the second tour of Galilee, this time the Twelve with him.
Which had been healed (α ησαν τεθεραπευμενα). Periphrastic past perfect passive, suggesting that the healing had taken place some time before this tour. These women all had personal grounds of gratitude to Jesus.
From whom seven devils (demons) had gone out (αφ' ης δαιμονια επτα εξεληλυθε). Past perfect active third singular for the δαιμονια are neuter plural. This first mention of Mary Magdalene describes her special cause of gratitude. This fact is stated also in Mr 16:9 in the disputed close of the Gospel. The presence of seven demons in one person indicates special malignity (Mr 5:9 ). See Mt 17:45 for the parable of the demon who came back with seven other demons worse than the first. It is not known where Magdala was, whence Mary came.
Joanna (Ιωανα). Her husband Χυζα, steward (επιτροπου) of Herod, is held by some to be the nobleman (βασιλικος) of Joh 4:46-53 who believed and all his house. At any rate Christ had a follower from the household of Herod Antipas who had such curiosity to see and hear him. One may recall also Manaen (Ac 13:1 ), Herod's foster brother. Joanna is mentioned again with Mary Magdalene in Lu 24:10 .
Who ministered unto them (αιτινες διηκονουν αυτοις). Imperfect active of διακονεω, common verb, but note augment as if from δια and ακονεω, but from διακονος and that from δια and κονις (dust). The very fact that Jesus now had twelve men going with him called for help from others and the women of means responded to the demand.
Of their substance (εκ των υπαρχοντων αυταις). From the things belonging to them. This is the first woman's missionary society for the support of missionaries of the Gospel. They had difficulties in their way, but they overcame these, so great was their gratitude and zeal.
By a parable (δια παραβολης). Mr 4:2 says "in parables" as does Mt 13:3 . This is the beginning of the first great group of parables as given in Mr 4:1-34 and Mt 13:1-53 . There are ten of these parables in Mark and Matthew and only two in Lu 8:4-18 (The Sower and the Lamp, 8:16) though Luke also has the expression "in parables" ( 8:10). See Mt 13 and Mr 4 for discussion of the word parable and the details of the Parable of the Sower. Luke does not locate the place, but he mentions the great crowds on hand, while both Mark and Matthew name the seaside as the place where Jesus was at the start of the series of parables.
His seed (τον σπορον αυτου). Peculiar to Luke.
Was trodden under foot (κατεπατηθη). First aorist passive indicative of καταπατεω. Peculiar to Luke here.
Of the heavens (του ουρανου). Added in Luke.
As soon as it grew (φυεν). Second aorist passive participle of φυω, an old verb to spring up like a sprout.
Withered away (εξηρανθη). First aorist passive indicative of ζηραινω, old verb, to dry up.
Moisture (ικμαδα). Here only in the N.T., though common word.
Grew with it (συνφυεισα). Same participle as φυεν above with συν- (together).
Asked (επηρωτων). Imperfect of επερωταω (επ and ερωταω) where Mr 4:10 has ηρωτων (uncompounded imperfect), both the tense and the use of επ indicate eager and repeated questions on the part of the disciples, perhaps dimly perceiving a possible reflection on their own growth.
What this parable might be (τις αυτη ειη η παραβολη). A mistranslation, What this parable was (or meant). The optative ειη is merely due to indirect discourse, changing the indicative εστιν (is) of the direct question to the optative ειη of the indirect, a change entirely with the writer or speaker and without any change of meaning (Robertson, Grammar, pp. 1043f.).
The mysteries (τα μυστηρια). See for this word on Mt 13:11; Mr 4:11 . Part of the mystery here explained is how so many people who have the opportunity to enter the kingdom fail to do so because of manifest unfitness.
That (ινα). Here Mr 4:11 also has ινα while Mt 13:13 has οτ (because). On the so-called causal use of ινα as here equal to οτ see discussion on Mt 13:13; Mr 4:11 . Plummer sensibly argues that there is truth both in the causal οτ of Matthew and the final ινα of Mark and Matthew. "But the principle that he who hath shall receive more, while he who hath not shall be deprived of what he seemeth to have, explains both the ινα and the οτ. Jesus speaks in parables because the multitudes see without seeing and hear without hearing. But He also speaks in parable
in order that they may see without seeing and hear without hearing." Only for "hearing" Luke has "understand" συνιωσιν, present subjunctive from a late omega form συνιω instead of the -μ verb συνιημ.
Is this (εστιν δε αυτη). Means this. Jesus now proceeds to interpret his own parable.
The seed is the word of God (ο σπορος εστιν ο λογος του θεου). The article with both subject and predicate as here means that they are interchangeable and can be turned round: The word of God is the seed. The phrase "the word of God" does not appear in Matthew and only once in Mark (Mr 7:13 ) and John (Joh 10:35 ), but four times in Luke (5:1; 8:11,21; 11:28 ) and twelve times in Acts. In Mr 4:14 we have only "the word." In Mr 3:31 we have "the will of God," and in Mt 12:46 "the will of my Father" where Lu 8:21 has "the word of God." This seems to show that Luke has the subjective genitive here and means the word that comes from God.
The devil (ο διαβολος). The slanderer. Here Mr 4:15 has Satan.
From their heart (απο της καρδιας αυτων). Here Mark has "in them." It is the devil's business to snatch up the seed from the heart before it sprouts and takes root. Every preacher knows how successful the devil is with his auditors. Mt 13:19 has it "sown in the heart."
That they may not believe and be saved (ινα μη πιστευσαντες σωθωσιν). Peculiar to Luke. Negative purpose with aorist active participle and first aorist (ingressive) passive subjunctive. Many reasons are offered today for the failure of preachers to win souls. Here is the main one, the activity of the devil during and after the preaching of the sermon. No wonder then that the sower must have good seed and sow wisely, for even then he can only win partial success.
Which for a while believe (ο προς καιρον πιστευουσιν). Ostensibly they are sincere and have made a real start in the life of faith.
They fall away (αφισταντα). Present middle indicative. They stand off, lose interest, stop coming to church, drop out of sight. It is positively amazing the number of new church members who "stumble" as Mr 4:17 has it (σκανδαλιζοντα), do not like the pastor, take offence at something said or done by somebody, object to the appeals for money, feel slighted. The "season of trial" becomes a "season of temptation" (εν καιρω πειρασμου) for these superficial, emotional people who have to be periodically rounded up if kept within the fold.
They are choked (συνπνιγοντα). Present passive indicative of this powerfully vivid compound verb συνπνιγω used in Mr 4:19; Mt 13:22 , only there these worldly weeds choke the word while here the victims themselves are choked. Both are true. Diphtheria will choke and strangle the victim. Who has not seen the promise of fair flower and fruit choked into yellow withered stalk without fruit "as they go on their way" (πορευομενο).
Bring no fruit to perfection (ου τελεσφορουσιν). Compound verb common in the late writers (τελοσ, φορεω). To bring to completion. Used of fruits, animals, pregnant women. Only here in the N.T.
In an honest and good heart (εν καρδια καλη κα αγαθη). Peculiar to Luke. In verse 8 the land (γην) is called αγαθην (really good, generous) and in verse 15 we have εν τη καλη γη ( in the beautiful or noble land ). So Luke uses both adjectives of the heart. The Greeks used καλος κ' αγαθος of the high-minded gentleman. It is probable that Luke knew this idiom. It occurs here alone in the N.T. It is not easy to translate. We have such phrases as "good and true," "sound and good," "right and good," no one of which quite suits the Greek. Certainly Luke adds new moral qualities not in the Hellenic phrase. The English word "honest" here is like the Latin honestus (fair, noble). The words are to be connected with "hold fast" (κατεχουσιν), "hold it down" so that the devil does not snatch it away, having depth of soil so that it does not shrivel up under the sun, and is not choked by weeds and thorns. It bears fruit (καρποφορουσιν, an old expressive verb, καρπος and φορεω). That is the proof of spiritual life.
In patience (εν υπομονη). There is no other way for real fruit to come. Mushrooms spring up overnight, but they are usually poisonous. The best fruits require time, cultivation, patience.
When he hath lighted a lamp (λυχνον αψας). It is a portable lamp (λυχνον) that one lights (αψας aorist active participle of απτω, to kindle, fasten to, light).
Under the bed (υποκατω κλινης). Here Mr 4:21 has the regular υπο την κλινην instead of the late compound υποκατω. Ragg notes that Matthew distributes the sayings of Jesus given here by Lu 8:16-18; Mr 4:21-25 concerning the parable of the lamp and gives them in three separate places (Mt 5:15; 10:26; 13:12 ). That is true, but it does not follow that Mark and Luke have bunched together separate sayings or that Matthew has scattered sayings delivered only on one occasion. One of the slowest lessons for some critics to learn is that Jesus repeated favourite sayings on different occasions and in different groupings just as every popular preacher and teacher does today. See on Mr 4:21 for further discussion of the lamp and stand.
May see the light (Βλεπωσιν το φως). In Mt 5:16 Jesus has it "may see your good works." The purpose of light is to let one see something else, not the light. Note present subjunctive (βλεπωσιν), linear action "Jesus had kindled a light within them. They must not hide it, but must see that it spreads to others" (Plummer). The parable of the lamp throws light on the parable of the sower.
That shall not be known (ο ου μη γνωσθη). Peculiar to Luke. First aorist passive subjunctive of γινωσκω with the strong double negative ου μη. See on Mr 4:22 for discussion of κρυπτον and αποκρυφον.
How ye hear (πως ακουετε). The manner of hearing. Mr 4:24 has "what ye hear" (τ ακουετε), the matter that is heard. Both are supremely important. Some things should not be heard at all. Some that are heard should be forgotten. Others should be treasured and practised.
For whosoever hath (Hος αν γαρ εχη). Present active subjunctive of the common verb εχω which may mean "keep on having" or "acquiring." See on Mr 4:25 for discussion.
Thinketh he hath (δοκε εχειν), or
seems to acquire or to hold . Losses in business illustrate this saying as when we see their riches take wings and fly away. So it is with hearing and heeding. Self-deception is a common complaint.
His mother and brethren (η μητηρ κα ο αδελφο αυτου). Mr 3:31-35; Mt 12:46-50 place the visit of the mother and brothers of Jesus before the parable of the sower. Usually Luke follows Mark's order, but he does not do so here. At first the brothers of Jesus (younger sons of Joseph and Mary, I take the words to mean, there being sisters also) were not unfriendly to the work of Jesus as seen in Joh 2:12 when they with the mother of Jesus are with him and the small group (half dozen) disciples in Capernaum after the wedding in Cana. But as Jesus went on with his work and was rejected at Nazareth (Lu 4:16-31 ), there developed an evident disbelief in his claims on the part of the brothers who ridiculed him six months before the end (Joh 7:5 ). At this stage they have apparently come with Mary to take Jesus home out of the excitement of the crowds, perhaps thinking that he is beside himself (Mr 3:21 ). They hardly believed the charge of the rabbis that Jesus was in league with Beelzebub. Certainly the mother of Jesus could give no credence to that slander. But she herself was deeply concerned and wanted to help him if possible. See discussion of the problem in my little book The Mother of Jesus and also on Mr 3:31 and Mt 12:46 .
Come to him (συντυχειν). Second aorist active infinitive of συντυγχανω, an old verb, though here alone in the N.T., meaning to meet with, to fall in with as if accidentally, here with associative instrumental case αυτω.
These which hear the word of God and do it (ο τον λογον του θεου ακουοντες κα ποιουντες). The absence of the article with "mother" and "brothers" probably means, as Plummer argues, "Mother to me and brothers to me are those who &c." No one is a child of God because of human parentage (Joh 1:13 ). "Family ties are at best temporal; spiritual ties are eternal" (Plummer) . Note the use of "hear and do" together here as in Mt 7:24; Lu 6:47 at the close of the Sermon on the Mount. The parable of the sower is almost like a footnote to that sermon. Later Jesus will make "doing" a test of friendship for him (Joh 15:14 ).
And they launched forth (κα ανηχθησαν). First aorist passive indicative of αναγω, an old verb, to lead up, to put out to sea (looked at as going up from the land). This nautical sense of the verb occurs only in Luke in the N.T. and especially in the Acts (Ac 13:13; 16:11; 18:21; 20:3,13; 21:I,2; 27:2,4,12,21; 28:10f. ).
He fell asleep (αφυπνωσεν). First aorist (ingressive) active indicative of αφυπνοω, to put to sleep, to fall off to sleep, a late verb for which the older Greek used καθυπνοω. Originally αφυπνοω meant to waken from sleep, then to fall off to sleep (possibly a medical use). This is the only passage which speaks of the sleep of Jesus. Here only in the N.T.
Came down (κατεβη). Second aorist active indicative of καταβαινω, common verb. It was literally true. These wind storms (λαιλαπς. So also Mr 4:37 ) rushed from Hermon down through the Jordan gorge upon the Sea of Galilee and shook it like a tempest (Mt 8:24 ). Mark's (Mr 4:37 ) vivid use of the dramatic present γινετα (ariseth) is not so precise as Luke's "came down." See on Mt 8:24 . These sudden squalls were dangerous on this small lake.
They were filling (συνεπληρουντο). Imperfect passive. It was the boat that was being filled (Mr 4:37 ) and it is here applied to the navigators as sailors sometimes spoke. An old verb, but in the N.T. used only by Luke (8:23; 9:51; Ac 2:1 ).
Teacher (Διδασκαλε), Mt 8:25 has
Lord (Κυριε). The repetition here shows the uneasiness of the disciples.
The raging of the water (τω κλυδον του υδατος). Κλυδων, common Greek word, is a boisterous surge, a violent agitation. Here only in the N.T. save Jas 1:6 . Κυμα (Mr 4:37 ) is the regular swell or wave. A
He commandeth (επιτασσε). Peculiar to Luke.
They arrived (κατεπλευσαν). First aorist active indicative of καταπλεω, common verb, but here only in the N.T. Literally,
they sailed down from the sea to the land, the opposite of
launched forth (ανηχθησαν) of verse 22. So we today use like nautical terms, to bear up, to bear down.
The Gerasenes (τον Γερασηνων). This is the correct text here as in Mr 5:1 while Gadarenes is correct in Mt 8:28 . See there for explanation of this famous discrepancy, now cleared up by Thomson's discovery of Khersa (Γερσα) on the steep eastern bank and in the vicinity of Gadara.
And for a long time (κα χρονω ικανω). The use of the associative instrumental case in expressions of time is a very old Greek idiom that still appears in the papyri (Robertson, Grammar, p. 527).
He had worn no clothes (ουκ ενεδυσατο ιματιον). First aorist middle indicative, constative aorist, viewing the "long time" as a point. Not pluperfect as English has it and not for the pluperfect, simply "and for a long time he did not put on himself (indirect middle) any clothing." The physician would naturally note this item. Common verb ενδυω or ενδυνω. This item in Luke alone, though implied by Mr 5:15 "clothed" (ιματισμενον).
Fell down (προσεπεσεν). Second aorist active of προσπιπτω, to fall forward, towards, prostrate before one as here. Common verb. Mr 5:6 has προσεκυνησεν (worshipped).
The Most High God (του θεου του υψιστου). Uncertain whether του θεου genuine or not. But "the Most High" clearly means God as already seen (Lu 1:32,35,36; 6:35 ). The phrase is common among heathen (Nu 24:16; Mic 6:6; Isa 14:14 ). The demoniac may have been a Gentile, but it is the demon here speaking. See on Mr 2:7; Mt 8:29 for the Greek idiom (τ εμο κα σο). "What have I to do with thee?" See there also for "Torment me not."
For he commanded (παρηγγελλεν γαρ). Imperfect active, correct text, for he was commanding.
Often times (πολλοις χρονοις). Or "for a long time" like χρονω πολλω of verse 27 (see Robertson, Grammar, p. 537, for the plural here).
Was kept under guard (εδεσμευετο). Imperfect passive of δεσμευω to put in chains, from δεσμος, bond, and that from δεω to bind. Old, but rather rare verb. Only here and Ac 22:4 in this sense. In Mt 23:4 it means to bind together. Some MSS. read δεσμεω in Lu 8:29 .
Breaking the bands asunder (διαρησσων τα δεσμα). Old verb, the preposition δια (in two) intensifying the meaning of the simple verb ρησσω or ρηγνυμ, to rend.
Was driven (ηλαυνετο). Imperfect passive of ελαυνω, to drive, to row, to march (Xenophon). Only five times in the N.T. Here alone in Luke and peculiar to Luke in this incident.
Legion (Λεγιων). See on Mr 5:9 .
Into the abyss (εις την αβυσσον). Rare old word common in LXX from α privative and βαθυς (deep). So bottomless place (supply χωρα). The deep sea in Ge 1:2; 7:11 . The common receptacle of the dead in Ro 10:7 and especially the abode of demons as here and Re 9:1-11; 11:7; 17:8; 20:1,3 .
A herd of many swine (αγελη χοιρων ικανων). Word
Were choked (απεπνιγη). Second aorist (constative) passive indicative third singular (collective singular) where Mr 5:13 has the picturesque imperfect επνιγοντο.
Saw what had come to pass (ιδοντες το γεγονος). This item only in Luke. Note the neat Greek idiom το γεγονος, articular second perfect active participle of γινομα. Repeated in verse 35 and in Mr 5:14 . Note numerous participles here in verse 35 as in Mr 5:15 .
He that was possessed with devils (demons) (only two words in Greek, ο δαιμονισθεις, the demonized).
Was made whole (εσωθη). First aorist passive indicative of σωζω to save from σως (safe and sound). This is additional information to the news carried to them in verse 34.
Were holden with great fear (φοβω μεγαλω συνειχοντο). Imperfect passive of συνεχω with the instrumental case of φοβος. See a similar use of this vigorous verb in Lu 12:50 of Jesus and in Php 1:23 of Paul.
From whom the devils (demons) were gone out (αφ' ου εξεληλυθε τα δαιμονια). Past perfect active of εξερχομα, state of completion in the past.
Prayed him (εδεειτο αυτου). Imperfect middle, kept on begging.
Throughout the whole city (καθ' ολην την πολιν). Mr 5:20 has it "in Decapolis." He had a great story to tell and he told it with power. The rescue missions in our cities can match this incident with cases of great sinners who have made witnesses for Christ.
Welcomed (απεδεξατο). Peculiar to Luke. To receive with pleasure, from αποδεχομα, a common verb.
For they were all waiting for him (ησαν γαρ παντες προσδοκωντες αυτον). Periphrastic imperfect active of
prosdokao , an old verb for eager expectancy, a vivid picture of the attitude of the people towards Jesus. Driven from Decapolis, he is welcomed in Capernaum.
Was (υπηρχεν). Imperfect of υπαρχω in sense of ην as in modern Greek. Common in Luke, and Acts, but not in other Gospels.
She lay a dying (απεθνησκεν). Imperfect active, she was dying. Mt 9:18 has it that she has just died.
Thronged (συνεπνιγον). Imperfect active of συμπνιγω, to press together, the verb used of the thorns choking the growing grain (Lu 8:14 ). It was a jam.
Had spent all her living upon physicians (εις ιατρους προσαναλωσασα ολον τον βιον). First aorist active participle of an old verb προσαναλισκω, only here in the N.T. But Westcott and Hort reject this clause because it is not in B D Syriac Sinaitic. Whether genuine or not, the other clause in Mr 5:26 certainly is not in Luke: "had suffered many things of many physicians." Probably both are not genuine in Luke who takes care of the physicians by the simple statement that it was a chronic case:
could not be healed of any (ουκ ισχυσεν απ' ουδενος θεραπευθηνα). He omitted also what Mark has: "and was nothing bettered but rather grew worse."
The border of his garment (του κρασπεδου του ιματιου). Probably the tassel of the overgarment. Of the four corners two were in front and two behind. See on Mt 9:20 .
Stanched (εστη). Second aorist active indicative,
stopped at once (effective aorist).
Press thee and crush thee (συνεχουσιν σε κα αποθλιβουσιν). Hold thee together, hold thee in (συνεχω, see verse 37).
Crush thee (αποθλιβω) here only in the N.T., a verb used of pressing out grapes in Diodorus and Josephus. Mr 5:31 has συνθλιβω, to press together.
For I perceived that power had gone forth from me (εγω γαρ εγνων δυναμιν εξεληλυθυιαν απ' εμου). Εγνων is second aorist active indicative of γινωσκω, knowledge by personal experience as here. It is followed by the second perfect active participle εξεληλυθυιαν in indirect discourse (Robertson, Grammar, pp. 1040-42). Jesus felt the sensation of power already gone. Who does not know what this sense of "goneness" or exhaustion of nervous energy means?
Trembling (τρεμουσα). Vivid touch of the feeling of this sensitive woman who now had to tell everybody of her cure, "in the presence of all the people" (ενωπιον παντος του λαου). She faced the widest publicity for her secret cure.
From the ruler of the synagogue's house (παρα του αρχισυναγωγου). The word "house" is not in the Greek here as in Mr 5:35 where απο is used rather than παρα, as here. But the ruler himself had come to Jesus (Lu 8:41 ) and this is the real idea. Trouble not (μηκετ σκυλλε). See on Lu 7:6 for this verb and also Mr 5:35; Mt 9:36 .
And she shall be made whole (κα σωθησετα). This promise in addition to the words in Mr 5:36 . See there for discussion of details.
Knowing that she was dead (ειδοτες οτ απεθανεν). That she died (απεθανεν), second aorist active indicative of αποθνησκω.
Called (εφωνησεν). Certainly not to wake up the dead, but to make it plain to all that she rose in response to his elevated tone of voice. Some think that the remark of Jesus in verse 52 (Mr 5:39; Mt 9:24 ) proves that she was not really dead, but only in a trance. It matters little. The touch of Christ's hand and the power of his voice restored her to life.
Maiden (η παις) rather than Mark's (Mr 5:41 ) το κορασιον (vernacular Koine).
Her spirit returned (επεστρεψεν το πνευμα αυτης). The life came back to her at once.
Be given her to eat (αυτη δοθηνα φαγειν). The first infinitive δοθηνα is an indirect command. The second φαγειν (second aorist active of εσθιω) is epexegetic purpose.
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