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Bible Commentaries

Godet's Commentary on Selected Books

Luke 18

Verses 1-8

2. The Messiah's Coming: Luk 17:20 to Luke 18:8.

This piece embraces: 1 st. A question put by the Pharisees respecting the time of the appearance of the kingdom of God, and the answer of Jesus ( Luk 17:20-21 ); 2 d. A discourse addressed by Jesus to His disciples on the same subject ( Luk 17:22-37 ); 3 d. The parable of the unjust judge, which applies the subject treated practically to believers ( Luk 18:1-8 ).

Verses 1-43

Third Cycle: The Last Scenes of the Journey, Luk 17:11 to Luke 19:27 .

This third section brings us to Bethany, to the gates of Jerusalem, and to the morning of Palm Day. It seems to me evident that Luke, in Luke 17:11, intends simply to indicate the continuation of the journey begun Luke 9:51, and not, as Wieseler will have it, the beginning of a different journey. In consequence of the multiplicity of events related, Luke reminds us from time to time of the general situation. It is in the course of this third section that his narrative rejoins that of the two other Syn. ( Luk 18:15 et seq.), at the time when children are brought to Jesus that He may bless them. This event being expressly placed in Peraea by Matthew and Mark, it is clear that the following events must have taken place at the time when Jesus was about to cross the Jordan, or had just passed it.

Verses 9-14

3. The Parable of the Pharisee and the Publican: Luke 18:9-14.

Vers. 9-14. This parable is peculiar to Luke. Who are those τινές , certain, to whom it is addressed? They cannot be Pharisees. Luke would have named them, as at Luke 16:14; and Jesus would not have presented to them as an example, in a parable, one of themselves, while designating him expressly in this character. Bleek thinks that they were disciples of Jesus. But Luke would have equally designated them ( Luk 16:1 ). They were therefore probably members of the company following Jesus, who had not yet openly declared for Him, and who manifested a haughty distance to certain sinners, known to be such, who were in the company with them; comp. Luke 19:7.

The word σταθείς , standing erect ( Luk 18:11 ), indicates a posture of assurance, and even boldness (comp. standing afar off, Luk 18:13 ). Πρὸς ἑαυτόν does not depend on σταθείς : “standing aside, at a distance, from the vulgar,” it would have required καθ᾿ ἑαυτόν (Meyer), but on προσηύχετο : “ he prayed, speaking thus to himself...” It was less a prayer in which he gave thanks to God, than a congratulation which he addressed to himself. True thanksgiving is always accompanied by a feeling of humiliation. The Pharisees fasted on the Monday and Thursday of every week. Κτᾶσθαι denotes the act of acquiring rather than that of possessing; it therefore refers here to the produce of the fields ( Luk 11:42 ).

To strike the breast: an emblem of the stroke of death which the sinner feels that he has merited at the hand of God. The heart is struck, as the seat of personal life and of sin. Λέγω ὑμῖν ( Luk 18:14 ): “I tell you, strange as it may appear...” The idea of justification, that is to say, of a righteousness bestowed on the sinner by a divine sentence, belongs even to the O. T. Comp. Genesis 15:6; Isaiah 50:8; Isaiah 53:11.

In the received reading ἢ ἐκεῖνος , ἤ is governed by μᾶλλον , rather, understood. The suppression of the adverb rather serves to prevent the idea that the Pharisee also received his share of justification. In the reading ἢ γὰρ ἐκεῖνος (more strongly supported than the others), ἤ is explained in the same way, and γάρ has, as is often the case, an interrogative value: “ For think you that he (the Pharisee) could be justified?” This somewhat difficult turn of expression has occasioned the Alex. correction παῤ ἐκεῖνον .

Our Lord loves to close His parables with axioms formally expressing the fundamental laws of moral life: God will overthrow all self-exaltation; but He will turn in love to all sincere humiliation.

Undoubtedly, if Luke's object was to point out in the ministry of Jesus the historical foundations for St. Paul's teaching, this piece corresponds most exactly to his intention. But no argument can be drawn therefrom contrary to the truth of the narrative. For the idea of justification by faith is one of the axioms not only of the teaching of Jesus, but of that of the O. T. (comp. besides the passages quoted, Hab 2:4 ).

Verses 15-17

4. The Children brought to Jesus: Luke 18:15-17.

Vers. 15-17. It is here that Luke's narrative rejoins Matthew's ( Mat 19:14 ) and Mark's ( Mar 10:13 ), after having diverged from them at Luke 9:51. Jesus is in Peraea. Of his sojourn in this province Matthew and Mark have as yet related only one fact the conversation with the Pharisees regarding divorce, summarily reproduced by Luke, Luke 16:13-19.

By the phrase: even infants ( καὶ τά ...), Luke 18:15, Luke would indicate that the consideration enjoyed by Jesus had reached its height. Mothers brought him even their nurslings. The article before βρέφη denotes the category.

The apostles think that this is to abuse the goodness and time of their Master. Mark, who likes to depict moral impressions, describes the indignation felt by Jesus ( ἠγανάκτησε ) on perceiving this feeling. Luke is less severe, the evangelist who is accused of abusing the Twelve. After calling back those little ones who were being sent away ( αὐτά ), Jesus instructs His disciples in respect of them. Matthew, as usual, summarizes.

There is in children a twofold receptivity, negative and positive, humility and confidence. By labour expended on ourselves, we are to return to those dispositions which are natural to the child. The pronoun τῶν τοιούτων , of such, does not refer to other children, such as those present, but to all those who voluntarily put on the dispositions indicated. Jesus, according to Mark, clasped those children tenderly in His arms, and put His hands on them, blessing them. Matthew speaks only of the imposition of hands. These touching details are omitted by Luke. For what reason, if he knew them? They agreed so well with the spirit of his Gospel! Volkmar ( Die Evangel. p. 487) explains this omission by the prosaic character of Luke (!). According to the same author, these little children represent the Gentiles saved by grace. Party dogmatics, even in this the simplest narrative of the Gospel!

Verses 18-23

1 st. Luke 18:18-23. The Rich Young Man.

Luke gives this man the title ἄρχων , chief, which probably signifies here, president of the synagogue. Matthew and Mark simply say εἷς . Later, Matthew calls him a young man ( Luk 18:20 ). His arrival is given with dramatic effect by Mark: He came running, and kneeled down before Him.

He sincerely desired salvation, and he imagined that some generous action, some great sacrifice, would secure this highest good; and this hope supposes that man has power of himself to do good; that therefore he is radically good. This is what is implied in his apostrophe to Jesus: Good Master; for it is the man in Him whom he thus salutes, knowing Him as yet in no other character. Jesus, by refusing this title in the false sense in which it is given Him, does not accuse Himself of sin, as has been alleged. If He had had a conscience burdened with some trespass, He would have avowed it explicitly. But Jesus reminds him that all goodness in man, as in every creature whatsoever, must flow from God. This axiom is the very foundation of Monotheism. Thereby He strikes directly at the young man's fundamental error. So far as Jesus is concerned, the question of His personal goodness depends solely on the consideration whether His inward dependence on that God, the only Good, is complete or partial. If it is complete, Jesus is good, but with a goodness which is that of God Himself operating in Him. His answer does not touch this personal side of the question. In Matthew, at least according to the Alex. reading, which is probably the true one, the word good is omitted in the young man's address, and the answer of Jesus is conceived in these terms: “ Why askest thou me about what is good? One only is good. ” Which may signify: “Good is being joined to God, the only Good;” or: “Good is fulfilling the commandments of God, the only good Being.” These two explanations are both unnatural. Even Bleek does not hesitate here to prefer the form of Luke and Mark. That of Matthew is perhaps a modification arising from the fear of inferences hostile to the purity of Jesus, which might be drawn from the form of His answer, as it has been transmitted to us by the two other Syn.

Jesus has just rectified the young man's radical mistake. Now He replies to his question. The work to be done is to love. Jesus quotes the second table, as bearing on works of a more external and palpable kind, and consequently more like one of those which the young man expected to be mentioned. This answer of Jesus is earnest; for to love is to live! (See at Luke 10:28.) The only question is how we can attain to it. But Jesus proceeds like a wise instructor. Far from arresting on their way those who believe in their own strength, He encourages them to prosecute it faithfully to the very end, knowing well that if they are sincere they shall by the law die to the law ( Gal 2:19 ). As Gess says: “To take the law in thorough earnest is the true way to come to Jesus Christ.”

The young man's reply ( Luk 18:21 ) testifies, undoubtedly, great moral ignorance, but also noble sincerity. He knows not the spiritual meaning of the commandments, and thinks that he has really fulfilled them. Here occurs the inimitable stroke of Mark's pencil: “And Jesus, beholding him, loved him. ” When critics wish to make out Mark to be the compiler of the two other evangelists, they are obliged to say, with De Wette, that Mark himself, inventing this amiable answer, has ascribed to Jesus his own feelings. We see much rather in this saying, one of those strokes which reveal the source whence the narratives of Mark proceed, and which must have been one very near the person of Jesus. It was an apostle who was following the impressions of Jesus as they depicted themselves in His countenance, and who caught as it passed the look of tenderness which He cast on this person so sincere and so innocent.

This look of love was also a scrutinizing look ( ἐμβλέψας αὐτῷ , Mar 5:21 ), by which Jesus discerned the good and bad qualities of the heart, and which dictated to Him the following saying. The δέ , with ἀκούσας ( Luk 18:22 ), is adversative and progressive. It announces a new resolution taken by the Lord. He determines to call this man into the number of His permanent disciples. The real substance of His answer, indeed, is not the order to distribute his goods, but the call to follow Him. The giving away of his money is only the condition of entering upon that new career which is open to him (see at Luke 9:61, Luk 12:33 ). In the proposal which He makes to him, Jesus observes the character which best corresponds to the desire expressed by the young man. He asked of Him some work to do; and Jesus points out one, and that decisive, which perfectly corresponds to his object, inasmuch as it assures him of salvation. To disengage oneself from everything in order to follow Jesus conclusively, such is really salvation, life. The formal correspondence of this answer to the young man's thought appears in the expression, One thing thou lackest (Luke and Mark); and more clearly still in that of Matthew, If thou wilt be perfect, go...Undoubtedly, according to the view of Jesus, man cannot do more or better than fulfil the law (Matthew 5:17; Mat 5:48 ). Only the law must be understood not in the letter, but in the spirit (Matthew 5:0). The perfection to which Jesus calls the young man is not the fulfilling of a law superior to the law strictly so called, but the real fulfilling, in opposition to that external, literal fulfilling which the young man already had ( Luk 18:21 ). This one thing which he lacks is the spirit of the law, that is, love ready to give everything: this is the whole of the law (Luke 6:0). The words, Thou shalt have treasure in heaven, do not signify that this almsgiving will open heaven to him, but that, when he shall have entered into this abode, he will find there, as the result of his sacrifice, grateful beings, whose love shall be to him an inexhaustible treasure (see at Luk 16:9 ). The act, which is the real condition of entering heaven, is indicated by the last word, to which the whole converges, Follow me. The mode of following Jesus varies according to times. At that time, in order to be inwardly attached to Him, it was necessary for a man to follow Him externally, and consequently to abandon his earthly position. At the present day, when Jesus lives no more in the body here below, the only condition is the spiritual one, but with all those moral conditions which flow from our relation to Him, according to each one's character and place.

The sorrow which this answer occasions the young man is expressed by Mark in the most dramatic way: He heaved a deep sigh ( στυγνάσας ). The Gospel of the Hebrews thus described this scene: “Then the rich man began to scratch his head, for that was not to his mind. And the Lord said to him: How, then, canst thou say, I have kept the law; for it is written in the law, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself; and lo! many of thy brethren, children of Abraham, live in the gutter, and die of hunger, while thy table is loaded with good things, and nothing is sent out to them?” Such is the writing which some modern critics (e.g., Baur) allege to be the original of our Matthew, and the parent of our synoptical literature!

Verses 18-30

5. The Rich Young Man: Luke 18:18-30.

In the three Syn. this piece immediately follows the preceding (Matthew 19:16; Mar 10:17 ). Oral tradition had connected the two, perhaps because there existed between them a real chronological succession.

Three parts: 1 st. The conversation with the young man ( Luk 18:18-23 ); 2 d. The conversation which takes place in regard to him ( Luk 18:24-27 ); 3 d. The conversation of Jesus with the disciples regarding themselves ( Luk 18:28-30 ).

Verses 24-27

2 d. Luke 18:24-27. The Conversation regarding the Rich Man.

It is not the fact of proprietorship which hinders the soul from taking its flight to spiritual blessings; it is the feeling of security which it inspires. So, in Mark, Jesus says, in explanation of His first declaration: “How hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter...!” The Shemites denote the impossibility of a thing by the image of a heavily-laden camel arriving at a city gate which is low and narrow, and through which it cannot pass. Then, to give this image the piquant form which the Oriental proverb loves, this gate is transformed into the eye of a needle. Some commentators and copyists, not understanding this figure, have changed κάμηλος , camel, into κάμιλος (the η was pronounced ι ), a very unusual word, which does not occur even in the ancient lexicographers, and which, it is alleged, sometimes denotes a ship's cable. In the received text ( τρυμαλιᾶς ῥαφίδος ), ῥαφίδος is a correction borrowed from Mark and Matthew; the true reading in Luke is βελόνης , which also signifies needle. Instead of the word τρυμαλία , the Alex. read τρύπημα (or τρήμα ). The first form might come from Mark; but it is more probable that it is the second which is taken from Matthew, the Gospel most generally used. We must therefore read in Luke, τρυμαλιᾶς βελόνης .

To exclude the rich from salvation was, it seemed, to exclude all; for if the most blessed among men can only be saved with difficulty, what will become of the rest? Such appears to be the connection between Luke 18:25-26. De Wette joins them in a somewhat different way: “As every one more or less seeks riches, none therefore can be saved.” This connection is less natural.

Jesus, according to Matthew and Mark, at this point turns on His disciples a look full of earnestness ( ἐμβλέψας αὐτοῖς , looking upon them): “It is but too true; but there is a sphere in which the impossible is possible, that of the divine operation ( παρὰ τῷ Θεῷ , with God).” Thus Jesus in the twinkling of an eye lifts the mind of His hearers from human works, of which alone the young man was thinking, to that divine work of radical regeneration which proceeds from the One only good, and of which Jesus is alone the instrument. Comp. a similar and equally rapid gradation of ideas, John 3:2; John 3:5.

Which would have been better for this young man to leave his goods to become the companion in labour of the St. Peters and St. Johns, or to keep those possessions so soon to be laid waste by the Roman legions?

Verses 28-30

3 d. Luke 18:28-30. The Conversation regarding the Disciples.

There had been a day in the life of the disciples when a similar alternative had been put before them; they had resolved it in a different way. What was to accrue to them from the course which they had taken? Peter asks the question innocently, in the name of all. The form of his inquiry in Matthew, What shall we have therefore? contains, more expressly than that of Luke and Mark, the idea of an expected recompense. In Matthew, the Lord enters at once into Peter's thought, and makes a special promise to the Twelve, one of the grandest which He addressed to them. Then, in the parable of the labourers, He warns them against indulging pride, on the ground that they have been the first to follow Him. It is difficult fully to harmonize this parable with the special promise which precedes it, without holding that the promise was conditional, and was not to be fulfilled, except in so far as they did not abandon themselves to the spirit of pride combated in the parable, which savours of refinement. As, therefore, Luke places this same promise in a wholly different setting, Luke 22:28-30, a context with which it perfectly agrees, it is probable that Matthew placed it here through an association of ideas which admits of easy explanation. According to Luke and Mark, the promise by which Jesus answered Peter is such as to apply to all believers; and it behoved to be so, if Jesus did not wish to favour the feeling of self-exaltation which breathed in the question of the apostle. There is even in the form, There is no man that...(Mark and Luke), the express intention to give to this promise the widest possible application.

All the relations of natural life find their analogies in the bonds formed by community of faith. Hence there arises for the believer a compensation for the painful rupture of fleshly ties, which Jesus knew so well by experience (Luke 8:19-21; comp. with Luk 8:1-3 ); and every true believer can, like Him, speak of fathers and mothers, brethren and children, who form his new spiritual family. Luke and Mark speak, besides, of houses; Matthew, of lands. The communion of Christian love in reality procures for each believer the enjoyment of every sort of good belonging to his brethren; yet, to prevent His disciples from supposing that it is an earthly paradise to which He is inviting them, He adds in Mark, with persecutions. Matthew and Luke had assuredly no dogmatic reason for omitting this important correction, if they had known it.

Luke likewise omits here the maxim, “ Many that are first shall be last, etc....,” with which this piece closes in Mark, and which in Matthew introduces the parable of the labourers.

The common source of the three Syn. cannot be the proto-Mark, as Holtzmann will have it, unless we hold it to be at their own hand that Luke ascribes to this rich man the title, ruler of the synagogue, and that Matthew calls him a young man. As to Luke's Ebionite tendency, criticism is bound to acknowledge, with this piece before it, that if salvation by voluntary poverty is really taught in our Gospel, it is not less decidedly so by the other two Syn.; that it is a heresy, consequently, not of Luke, but of Jesus, or rather, a sound exegesis can find no such thing in the doctrines which our three evangelists agree in putting in the Master's mouth.

Verses 31-34

6. The Third Announcement of the Passion: Luke 18:31-34.

Vers. 31-34. Twice already Jesus had announced to His disciples His approaching sufferings ( Luk 9:18 et seq., 43 et seq.); yet, as proved by the request of the two sons of Zebedee (Matthew 20:20; Mar 10:35 ), their hopes constantly turned towards an earthly kingdom. In renewing the announcement of His Passion, Jesus labours to abate the offence which this event will occasion, and even to convert it into a support for their faith, when at a later date they shall compare this catastrophe with the sayings by which He prepared them for it ( Joh 13:19 ). Mark prefaces this third announcement by a remarkable introduction ( Luk 10:32 ). Jesus walks before them on the road; they follow, astonished and alarmed. This picture reminds us of the expression, He set His face stedfastly ( Luk 9:51 ), as well as of the sayings of the disciples and of Thomas (John 11:8; Joh 11:16 ). What substantial harmony under this diversity of form! In general, Luke does not quote prophecies; he does so here once for all, and, as it were, in the mass. The dative τῷ υἱῷ may be made dependent on γεγραμμένα , “written for the Son of man,” as the sketch of His course; or τελεσθήσεται , “shall be accomplished in respect to the Son of man,” in His person. The first construction is simpler. The form of the fut. passive used by Luke denotes passive abandonment to suffering more forcibly than the active futures used by Matthew and Mark. The kind of death is not indicated in Luke and Mark so positively as in Matthew ( σταυρῶσαι ); nevertheless the details in this third announcement are more precise and more dramatic than in the preceding. See at Luke 9:45. On Luk 18:34 Riggenbach justly observes: “Toward everything which is contrary to natural desire, there is produced in the heart a blindness which nothing but a miracle can heal.”

As Luk 18:34 has no parallel in the other two Syn., Holtzmann thinks that Luke makes this reflection a substitute for the account of the request preferred by Zebedee's sons, which is found here in the narratives of Matthew and Mark. But does not a perfectly similar reflection occur in the sequel of the second announcement of the Passion ( Luk 9:45 ), where no such intention is admissible? It is difficult for those who regard Luke's Gospel as systematically hostile to the Twelve, to explain the omission of a fact so unfavourable to two of the leading apostles. Volkmar ( Die Evangel. p. 501) has found the solution: Luke wishes to avoid offending the Judeo-Christian party, which he desires to gain over to Paulinism! So, artful in what he says, more artful in his silence, such is Luke in the estimate of this school of criticism!

Verses 35-43

7. The Healing of Bartimeus: Luke 18:35-43.

John's very exact narrative serves to complete the synoptical account. The sojourn of Jesus in Peraea was interrupted by the call which led Jesus to Bethany to the help of Lazarus (John 11:0). Thence He proceeds to Ephraim, on the Samaritan side, where He remained in retirement with His disciples ( Joh 11:54 ). It was doubtless at this time that the third announcement of His Passion took place. On the approach of the feast of Passover, He went down the valley of the Jordan, rejoining at Jericho the Galilean caravans which arrived by way of Peraea. He had resolved this time to enter Jerusalem with the greatest publicity, and to present Himself to the people and to the Sanhedrim in the character of a king. It was His hour, the hour of His manifestation, expected long ago by Mary ( Joh 2:4 ), and which His brethren ( Joh 7:6-8 ) had thought to precipitate.

Vers. 35-43. Luke speaks of a blind man sitting by the wayside, whom Jesus cured as He came nigh to Jericho; Mark gives this man's name, Bartimeus; according to his account, it was as Jesus went out of Jericho that He healed him; finally, Matthew speaks of two blind men, who were healed as Jesus departed from the city. The three accounts harmonize, as in so many cases, only in the words of the dialogue; the tenor of the sufferer's prayer and of the reply of Jesus is almost identical in the three ( Luk 18:38 and parallel). Of those three narratives, that of Mark is undoubtedly the most exact and picturesque; and in the case of a real difference, it is to this evangelist that we must give the preference. It has been observed, however (Andreae Beweis des Glaubens, July and August 1870), that Josephus and Eusebius distinguished between the old and the new Jericho, and that the two blind men might have been found, the one as they went out of the one city, the other at the entrance of the other. Or, indeed, it is not impossible that two cures took place on that day, the one on the occasion of their entrance into the city, the other on their leaving it, which Matthew has combined; Luke applying to the one, following a tradition slightly altered, the special details which had characterized the other. This double modification might have been the more easily introduced into the oral narrative, if Jesus, coming from Ephraim to Jericho, entered the city, as is very probable, by the same road and by the same gate by which He left it to go to Jerusalem. If there were two blind men, they might then have been healed almost on the same spot.

The name Bartimeus ( son of Timeus), which Mark has preserved, comes either from the Greek name Τιμαῖος , the honourable, or from the Aramaic, same, samia, blind; blind, son of the blind (Hitzig, Keim). Mark adds: the blind man. The term suggests the name by which he was known in the place.

The address, son of David, is a form of undisguised Messianic worship. This utterance would suffice to show the state of men's minds at that time. The rebuke addressed to him by the members of the company ( Luk 18:39 ) has no bearing whatever on the use of this title. It seems to them much rather that there is presumption on the part of a beggar in thus stopping the progress of so exalted a personage.

The reading of the T. R., σιωπήσῃ , is probably taken from the parallels. We must read, with the Alex.: σιγήσῃ (a term more rarely used).

Nothing could be more natural than the sudden change which is effected in the conduct of the multitude, as soon as they observe the favourable disposition of Jesus; they form so many inimitable characteristics preserved by Mark only. With a majesty truly royal, Jesus seems to open up to the beggar the treasures of divine power: “What wilt thou that I shall do unto thee?” and to give him, if we may so speak, carte blanche ( Luk 18:41 ).

In replying to the blind man's prayer, Luke 18:42, He says, thy faith, not, my power, to impress on him the value of that disposition, in view of the still more important spiritual miracle which remains to be wrought in him, and, hath saved thee, not, hath made thee whole; although his life was in no danger, to show him that in this cure there lies the beginning of his salvation, if he will keep up the bond of faith between him and the Saviour's person. Jesus allows Bartimeus to give full scope to his gratitude, and the crowd to express aloud their admiration and joy. The time for cautious measures is past. Those feelings to which the multitude give themselves up are the breath preceding that anticipation of Pentecost which is called Palm Day. Δοξάζειν relates to the power, αἰνεῖν to the goodness of God ( Luk 2:20 ).

The undeniable superiority of Mark's narrative obliges Bleek to give up here, at least in part, his untenable position of regarding Mark as the compiler of the two others. He acknowledges, that even while using the narrative of the other two, he must have had in this case a separate and independent source. So far well; but is it possible that this source absolutely contained nothing more than this one narrative?

Holtzmann, on the other hand, who regards the proto-Mark as the origin of the three Syn., finds it no less impossible to explain how Matthew and Luke could so completely alter the historical side of the account (the one: two blind men instead of one; the other: the healing before entering Jericho rather than after, etc.), and to spoil at will its dramatic beauty, so well reproduced by Mark. And what signifies the explanation given by Holtzmann of Luke's transposition of the miracle, and which is borrowed from Bleek: that Luke has been led by the succeeding history of Zaccheus to place the healing before the entrance into Jericho!

Volkmar, who derives Luke from Mark, and Matthew from the two combined, alleges that Mark intended the blind man to be the type of the Gentiles who seek the Saviour (hence the name Bartimeus; Timeus comes, according to him, from Thima, the unclean); and the company who followed Him, and who wish to impose silence on the man, to be types of the Judeo-Christians, who denied to the Gentiles access to the Messiah of Israel. If Luke omits the most picturesque details, it is because of his prosaic character. If he omits the name Bartimeus, it is because he is offended at finding the Gentiles designated as impure beings. If he places the miracle before entering Jericho, it is because he distinguishes the healing of the man from that of his paganism, which shall be placed after, and that in the salvation granted to Zaccheus. Zaccheus, the pure, is the counterpart of Timeus, the unclean ( Die Evangel. pp. 502-505). Of its kind this is the climax! Such is the game of hide and seek which the evangelists played with the Churches on the theme of the person of Jesus! After this we need give no other proofs of this author's sagacity.

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Bibliographical Information
Godet, Frédéric Louis. "Commentary on Luke 18". "Godet's Commentary on Selected Books". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/gsc/luke-18.html.