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Bible Commentaries
Luke 18

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Verses 1-99

18:1-8. § The Parable of the Unrighteous Judge. Comp. 15:8-10, 11-32, 16:1-9, 19-31, 17:7-10. The connexion with what precedes is close, and is implied in the opening clause; for αὐτοῖς naturally refers to the same audience as before. Had there been no connexion, αὐτοῖς would have been omitted: comp. 13:6. Godet appeals also to the formula ἔλεγεν δὲ καί; but here the καί is not genuine. The connexion is, that, although the time of Christ’s return to deliver His people is hidden from them, yet they must not cease to pray for deliverance. Both here and 21:36 we ve the command to be unremitting in prayer immediately after a declaration that the hour of Christ’s coming is unknown; and the same connexion is found Mark 13:33. See Resch, Agrapha, p. 297.


1. Ἔλεγεν δὲ παραβολήν. See on 5:36.

πρὸς τὸ δεῖν. Not merely the duty, but the necessity of perseverance in prayer is expressed; and prayer in general is meant, not merely prayer in reference to the Second Advent and the troubles which precede it. Only here and ver. 9 is the meaning of a parable put as the preface to it; and in each case it is given as the Evangelist’s preface, not as Christ’s.

πάντοτε προσεύχεσθαι. Comp. πάντοτε χαίρετε.�1 Thessalonians 5:17). Grotius quotes Proclus ad Timæum χρὴ�

The form ἐνκακεῖν is right here, and perhaps Galatians 6:9; Ephesians 3:13; 2 Thessalonians 3:13; ἐγκακεῖν 2 Corinthians 4:1, 2 Corinthians 4:16; but in six places some texts have ἐκκακεῖν. See Gregory, Proleg. p. 78. Ellicott makes ἐγκακεῖν mean “to lose heart in a course of action,” and ἐκκακεῖν “to retire through fear out of it”; but authority for any such word as ἐκκακεῖν seems to be wanting. Perhaps ἐγκακεῖν is not found earlier than Polybius. See Suicer.

2. Κριτής τις ἦν ἔν τινι πόλει. We are probably to understand a Gentile official. He had no respect for either the vox Dei or the vox populi, consciously (ver. 4) defying Divine commands and public opinion. See numerous parallels in Wetst., and contrast 2 Corinthians 8:21. The Talmud speaks of frequent oppression and venality on the part of Gentile magistrates; and for a striking illustration of the parable witnessed by himself see Tristram, Eastern Customs in Bible Lands, p. 228. Note the τις.

The idea of ἐντρέπομαι seems to be that of “turning. towards” a person, and so “paying respect” (20:13; Matthew 21:37; Mark 12:6; 2 Thessalonians 3:14; Hebrews 12:9). But as ἐντρέπω means “I put to shame” (1 Corinthians 4:14), ἐντρέπομαι may possibly have the notion of “being abashed, having a felling of awe,” before a person. In class. Grk. it is commonly followed by a gen.

3. χήρα δὲ ἦν. Typical of defencelessness: she had neither a protector to coerce, nor money to bribe the unrighteous magistrate. The O.T. abounds in denunciations of those who oppress widows: Exodus 22:22; Deuteronomy 10:18, 24:17, 27:19; Job 22:9, Job 22:24:3; Jeremiah 22:3; Ezekiel 22:7, etc. Comp. Non, ita me dii ament, auderet facere hæc viduæ mulieri, quæ in me facit (Ter. Heaut. v. 1:80).


ἤρχετο. “Continued coming, came often,” ventitabat. The imperf. indicates her persistence.

Ἐκδίκησόν με�Matthew 5:25.

As often, the�Joel 2:20; Daniel 4:22, Daniel 4:29, Daniel 4:30, Theod.), etc. Here d has devindica me ab.

4. οὐκ ἤθελεν. The imperf. (A.aleph; A B D L Q R Ξ L) has more point than the aor. (A etc.): he continued refusing, just as she continued coming. With ἐπὶ χρόνον comp. ἐπὶ πλείονα χρ. (Acts 18:20); ἐφʼ ὅσον χρ. (Romans 7:1; 1 Corinthians 7:39; Galatians 4:1).

Εἰ καὶ τὸν Θεὸν οὐ φοβοῦμαι. “Although I fear not God,” implying that this is the actual fact (2 Corinthians 12:11), whereas καὶ εἰ would have put it as an hypothesis (1 Corinthians 8:5; , 1 Peter 3:1). Win. 53:7. b, p. 554.

Perhaps its being given as a fact explains the use of οὐ rather than μή: or the οὐ coalesces with the verb, and thus escapes the influence of the εἰ: comp. 11:8, 14:26, 16:11, 12, 31; 2 Corinthians 12:11. Burton., §§ 284, 469. But see Simcox, Lang. of N. T. p. 184.


οὐδέ. “Nor yet, nor even”: a climax.

5. διά γε τὸ παρέχειν μοι κόπον. “Yet because she trouble me.” Comp. διά γε τὴν�

ὑπωπιάζῃ. From ὑπώπιον, which means (1) the part of the face below the eyes; (2) a blow there, a black eye; (3) any blow. Hence ὑπωπιάζω means (1) hit under the eye, give a black eye; (2) beat black and blue; (3) mortify, annoy greatly (1 Corinthians 9:27). Comp. αἱ πόλεις ὑπωπιασμέναι (Aristoph. Pax, 541). There is no doubt that “annoy greatly” is the meaning here. Comp. Qui me sequatur quoquo eam, rogitando obtundat, enecet (Ter. Eun. iii. 5, 6). Meyer, Godet, Weiss and others advocate the literal meaning, and regard it as a mauvaise plaisanterie or an exaggeration on the part of the judge. But, as Field points out (Otium Norvic. 3. p. 52), the tenses are fatal to it. “Lest at last she come and black my eyes for me” would require ἐλθοῦσα ὑπωπιάσῃ. The judge was afraid of being annoyed continually, not of being assaulted once.


The Latin Versions vary much in their rendering both of εἰς τέλος and of υΚπωπιάζῃ: in novissimo (Vulg.), in novissimo die (q), in tempus (d), usque ad finem (e), usque quaque (1), in finem (r): suggillet (Vulg.), contringat (b ff2 q), molestior sit mihi (e), invidiam mihi faciat (1).

Strauss has pointed out similarities of feature between the parables of the Rich Fool, to the Friend at Midnight at Midnight, and the Unrightous Judge, especially with regard to the soliloquies in each case: διελογίζετο ἐν αὑτῶ λέγων Τί ποιήσω, ὄτι κ.τ.λ., τοῦτο ποιήσω (16:3, 4); εἶπεν ἐν ἑαυτῷ (18:4), One may admit that these are “signs of a common origin,” but that they are also “signs of a Jewish-Christian, or indeed of an Ebionite source,” is not so evident. He says that this “mimic” repetition, “What shall I do? … This will I do,” is thoroughly Jewish. But as Christ was a Jew, speaking to Jews, there is nothing surprising in that. He says also that the Ebionites laid great stress on prayer, and inculcated a contempt for riches; and that two of the three parables do the one, while the third does the other. But assuredly the Ebionites were not peculiar in advocating prayer, not in despising riches, although in the latter point they went to fanatical excess. See Strauss, L. J. § 41, p. 257, ed. 1864.

6 Εἶπεν δὲ ὁ κύριος. The insertion indicates a pause, during which the audience consider the parable, after which Jesus makes a comment and draws the moral of the narrative. For ὁ κύριος of Christ see on 5:17 and 7:13; and for ὁ κριτὴς τὴς�

7. οὐ μὴ ποιήσῃ. This intensive form of the simple negative may be used in questions as well as in statements, and expresses the confidence with which an affirmative answer is expected: comp. John 18:11.Revelation 15:4 is not quite parallel. The argument here is à forliori, or (as Augustine, Quæst. Evang. ii. 45) ex dissimilitudine, and has many points. If an unjust judge would yield to the importunity of an unknown widow, who came and spoke to him at intervals, how much more will a just God be ready to reward the perseverance of His own elect, who cry to Him day and night ? comp. the very similar passage Eccles. 35:13-18 [32:18-22], and the similar argument Luke 11:13. The treatment of the Syrophenician woman (Matthew 15:22-28 ||) is an illustration of the text. With τῶν βοώντων αὐῷ comp. the souls of the saints under the altar (Revelation 6:9-11, ). In both cases it is deliverance from oppression that is prayed for.


καὶ μακροθυμεῖ ἐπʼ αὐτοῖς. “And He is long-suffering over them” (RV.). This, and not μαλροθυμῶν (E), is the reading of almost all uncials and of other important authorities: et patiens est in illis (d e), et patientiam habebit in illis (Vulg.).

The exact meaning of the different parts of the clause cannot be determined with certainty; but the general sense is clear enough, viz. that, however long the answer to prayer may seem to be delayed, constant faithful prayer always is answered.

The chief points of doubt are (1) the construction of καὶ μακροθυμεῖ, (2) the meaning of μακροθυμεῖ, (3) the meaning of ἐπʼ αὐτοῖς. (1) We need not join καὶ μακροθυμεῖ to οὐ μὴ ποιήσῃ, but may take it with τῶν βοώντων, which is equivalent to of οἳ βοῶσιν: the elect cry and He μακροθυμεῖ ἐπʼ αὐτοῖς. (2) We need not give μακροθυμεῖ its very common meaning of “is slow to anger”: it sometimes means “to be slow, be backward, tarry,” and is almost synonymous with βραδύνω. Comp. Hebrews 6:15; James 5:7; Job 7:16; Jeremiah 15:15; and the remarkably parallel passage Eccles. 35 [32.] 22, καὶ ὁ Κύριος οὐ μὴ βραδύνῃ οὐδὲ μὴ μακροθυμήσει ἐπʼ αὐτοῖς. So also μακροθυμία may mean “slow persistency” as well as “slowness to anger.” Comp. 1 Mac. 8:4, and see Trench, Syn. liii. (3) This being so, there is no need to make ἐπʼ αὐτοῖς refer to the enemies of the elect, although such loose wording is not impossible, especially if Lk. had the passage in Ecclus. in his mind. The words naturally, and in strict grammar necessarily, refer to the elect, and indicate the persons in respect of whom the slowness of action takes place. Comp. μακροθυμῶν ἐπʼ αὐτῷ (James 5:7). The meaning, then, seems to be, “And shall not Clod deliver His elect who cry day and n ht to Him, while He is slow to act for them?” That is, to them in their need the μακροθυμία of God seems to be βραδύτης (Revelation 6:10), just as it does to the ungodly, when they see no judgment overtaking them (2 Peter 3:1-10). But it is possible that μακροθυμεῖ means “is not impatient.” The unjust judge heard the widow’s frequent request with impatience and dislike. God listens to the ceaseless crying of His is saints with willingness and pleasure. In this sense μακροθυμεῖν is the opposite of ὀξυθυμεῖν, “to be quick-tempered.”

8. ἐν τάχει. “Quickly, without delay”; celeriter (a), confestim (d), cito (Vulg.). Although He bears long, and t suffering seems to delay, yet He really acts speedily. This interpretation is confirmed by Acts 12:7, Acts 12:22:18, Acts 12:25:4; Romans 16:20; 1 Timothy 3:14; Revelation 1:1, Revelation 22:6. Other, prefer repente, inopinato. Thus Godet says, that although God delays to act, yet. when the moment comes, He acts swiftly, as at the Deluge and the destruction of Sodom. So Didon, l’heure sonnée, la Vengeance sera Foudroyante (J. C. Ch. 9. p. 614). In any case, the ἐν τάξει is placed last with emphasis.


πλήν. “Howbeit (certain as the Messiah’s deliverance of His people is, a sorrowful question arises) the Son of Man, when He come, will He find faith on the earth?” The πλήν is not im Uebrigen (Weiss), nor seulement (Godet), but doch (Luther), cependant (Lasserre). Latin Versions have verum (d), tamen (b i l q), or verumtamen (Vulg.). Note the emphatic order, both ὁ υἱὸς τ.�

Only here and Galatians 2:17 (where some prefer ἄρα) is ἆρα found in N.T. In LXX it a always followed by γε (Genesis 18:13, Genesis 18:26:9, 37:10; Jeremiah 4:10), but without γε it is freq. in Sym. Latin Versions have numquid (b c i l q) or putas (Vulg.). See B lass on Acts 8:30.

τὴν πίστν. “The necessary faith, the faith in question, faith in Jesus as the Messiah and Saviour.” Others prefer “the faith which perseveres in prayer,” or again “loyalty to Himself,” which is much the same as faith in Christ. The answer to this desponding question, which seems, but only seems, “to call in question the success of our Lord’s whole mediatorial work,” has been given by anticipation 27:26: the majority, not only of mankind but of Christians, will be absorbed in worldly pursuits, and only a few will ‘endure to the end” (Matthew 24:12, Matthew 24:13). No doubt is expressed or implied as to the coming of the Son of Man, but only as to what will find.


There is therefore no reason for conjecturing that the parable received its present from at a time when belief in the Second Advent was waning. Still is there for interpreting it of the Christian Church seeking, help from pagan magistrates against Jewish persecutors, and then concluding that it must have been composed after the time of S. Luke (De Wette). On the other hand, Hilgenfeld sees in the thirst for vengeance, which (he thinks) inspires the parable, evidence of its being one of the oldest portions of the Third Gospel.

9-14. Parable of the Pharisee and the Publican. This s no connexion either with the parable which precedes it or with the narrative which follows it. The two parables were evidently spoken on different occasions and addressed to different audiences, the first to the disciples on a specified occasion, the second to the persons described in ver. 9 on some occasion not specified. They are placed in juxtaposition, probably because tradition assigned them to the same portion of Christ’s ministry (Hahn); or possibly because they both (but in very different ways) treat of prayer (Keil). That Lk. brackets the two parables for some reason is shown by the καί. But note the δέ also, and see on 3:9.

The καί is genuine (A.aleph; B D L M Q R X L, Vulg.) although A etc. with several Versions omit.

9. As in ver. 1, this preface to the parable is the Evangelist’s: εἶπεν δέ, δὲ καί, εἶπεν πρός, and εἶπεν παραβολήν are all marks of his style. It is possible to take πρός here as meaning “with a view to,” as in ver. 1, or “against,” as in 20:19. But it is much more likely that it means “unto” after εἶπεν because (1) this construction is specially common in Lk. and (2) we here have persons and not the substantial infinitive after πρός: dixit autem et ad quosdam qui (vulg.). Syr-Sin. has “against.”

τοὺς πεποιθότας ἐφʼ ἑαυτοῖς ὅτι. They themselves were the foundation on which their confidence was built: 11:22; 2 Corinthians 1:9; Hebrews 2:13; Deuteronomy 28:52; 2 Samuel 22:3; Isaiah 8:17, Isaiah 12:2, etc. The Constructions ἔν τινι, ἐπί τινα, and εἴς τινα are less common. Grotius and others render ὅτι “because,” making the righteousness a fact and the ground of their self-confidence; which is incredible. Comp. Proverbs 30:12; Isaiah 65:5. The Talmud inveighs against the Pharisaism of those “who implore you to mention some more duties which they might perform.”

ἐξουθενοῦντας. A strong word, common to Lk. and Paul: “utterly despised, treated as of no account,” 23:11; Acts 4:11; Romans 14:3, Romans 14:10. Comp. Ps. Song of Solomon 2:5.


τοὺς λοιπούς. “The rest, all others” (RV.): comp. οἱ λοιποί (ver. 11). The “other” of AV. and most English Versions has been silently altered into “others” by the printers: “other” means “other folk,” but τοὺς λοιπούς means “all other folk.”

10.�Acts 2:15, Acts 3:1, Acts 10:9).

11. σταθείς. This perhaps indicates the conscious adopting of an attitude or of a conspicuous place: debout et la tête haute (Lasserre); après s’être placé en évidence (Reuss); in loco conspicuo instar statutæ stans erectus (Valek.). Contrast ver. 13 and comp. vet. 40, 19:8; Acts 2:14, Acts 17:22, Acts 27:21. The expression is peculiar to Lk. Standing was the common posture at prayer among the Jews (1 Samuel 1:26; 1 Kings 8:14, 1 Kings 8:22; Matthew 6:5; Mark 11:25). See Lightfoot on Matthew 6:5.

πρὸς ἑαυτόν. These words probably follow ταῦτα (B L, Vulg. Boh. Arm. Orig.); but, even if they precede, they must be taken with προσηύχετο (comp. 2 Mac. 11:13): infra so precabalur (e), apud se orabat (Vulg.). This use of πρὸς ἑαντόν is classical. “Standing by himself” would be καθʼ ἑαυτόν, seorsum, which D here reads: comp. Acts 28:16; James 2:17. The character of his prayer shows why he would not utter it so that others could hear.


εὐχαριστῶ σοι. There is no prayer, even in form; he asks God for nothing, being thoroughly satisfied with his present condition. And only in form is this utterance a thanksgiving; it is self-congratulation. He glances at God, but contemplates himself. Indeed he almost pities God, who but for himself would be destitute of faithful servants.

οἱ λοιποὶ τῶν�1 Corinthians 15:9, 1 Corinthians 15:10, and see Schœttgen, 1., p. 306. Noli in precibus bona tua enumerare.


ἅρπαγες, ἄδικοι, μοιξοί. Gratias agit, non quia bonus, sed quia Bolus; non tam de bonis quæ habet, quam de malis quæ in aliis videt (Bernard, De Grad. Humil. 5:17). But there is no hint that he was lying in acquitting himself of gross and flagrant crimes. Such falsehood in a silent address to God is scarcely intelligible. His error lay in supposing that all other men were guilty of these things, and that he himself was not guilty of sins that were as bad or worse. Hillel had taught, “Endeavour not to be better than the community, and trust not in thyself until the day of thy death.” The οὗτος ις χοντεμπτυους, as often. The τελώνης is pointed out to the Almighty as a specimen of a οἱ λοιποὶ τ.�

12. He cites these good works as instances of the ways in which he is still further superior to other men. He is superior not only in what he avoids, but in what he performs. Characteristically he names just those things on which Pharisees prided themselves (Matthew 9:14, Matthew 23:23).

δὶς τοῦ σαββάτου. Mondays and Thursdays. Moses was supposed to have ascended the mount on the fifth day, and to have come down on the second. For the sing. of σάββατον in the sense of “a week” comp. Mark 16:9; 1 Corinthians 16:2. It is amazing that any should have taken this as meaning “I fast twice on the sabbath,” which would be unintelligible. The jejuno bis in sabbato of the Vulg. might mislead those who knew no Greek. The frequent statement that the Pharisees observed the second and fifth days as fasts all through the year (D. B.2 1:2. p. 1054), and held that this was enjoined by the oral Law, is without foundation: and those who make it are inconsistent in saying that this Pharisee boasts of works of supererogation. In that case he merely States that he keeps the Law in its entirety. The Mosaic Law enjoins only one fast in the year, the Day of Atonement. Other annuaj fasts were gradually established in memory of national calainities (Zechariah 8:19). Occasional fasts were from time to time ordered in seasons of drought and other public calamities, and these additional fasts were always held on Mondays and Thursdays. Thus, a five days’ fast would not last from Monday to Friday inclusive, but would be held on all Mondays and Thursdays until the five days were made up (see the Didache, 8:1; Apost. const. vii. 23, 1). But many individuals imposed extra fasts on themselves, and there were some who fasted on Mondays and Thursdays all the year round. Such cases would be commonest among the Pharisees, and the Pharisee in the parable is one of them: but there is no evidence that all Pharisees adopted this practice or tried to make it a general obligation (Schülrer, Jewish People in the T. of J. C. II. 2. p. 118; Edersh. L. & T. 2. p. 291; Wetstein and Lightfoot, ad loc.). The man, therefore, is boasting of a work of supererogation. What is told us about Jewish fasting in the N.T. (5:33; Matthew 6:16, Matthew 6:9:14; Mark 2:18; Acts 27:9) is confirmed by the Mishna. Note that the Pharisee has dropped even the form of thanksgiving.

With δὶς τοῦ σαββάτου comp. ἑπτάκις τῆς ἡέρας (17:4). The genitives in 24:1; Matthew 2:14, 25:6, 28:13; Galatians 6:17 are not parallel.

ἀποδεκατεύω πάντα. Here again, in paying tithe of everything, he seems to boast of doing more than the Law required. Tithe was due (Numbers 18:21; Deuteronomy 24:22), but not of small garden herbs (Matthew 23:23). There is something for which God owes thanks to him.


The rare form�

ὅσα κτῶμαι. “All that I get” (RV.): quæcunque adquiro (i q), quæ adquiro (d). It was on what he acquired, not on what he possessed, that he paid tithe; on his income, not on his capital. All English Versions prior to RV. go wrong here with Vulg. (quæ possideo), Luth. (das ich habe), and Beta. “Possess” would be κέκτημαι. There is a similar error 21:19. Excepting Matthew 10:9 and 1 Thessalonians 4:4, the verb is peculiar to Lk. in N.T. (Acts 1:18, Acts 8:20, Acts 22:28): it is freq. in LXX.


13. μακρόθεν ἑστώς. Far from the Pharisee: nothing else is indicated. In his self-depreciation he thinks himself unworthy to come now in worship to one who must be a favoured servant of God. But we need not suppose that he remained in the Court of the Gentiles (Grot.), in which case the Pharisee in the Court of Israel would hardly have seen him. Comp. 23:49. The change from σταθείς (ver 11) to ἑστώς perhaps implies less of a set, prominent position in this case. Vulg. has stans in both places; but Cyprian has cum stetisset for σταθείς and stabat et for ἑστώς (De Dom. Orat. 6.). Comp. Tac. Hist. iv. 72, 4.

οὑκ ἤθελεν οὐδὲ τοὺς ὀφθαλμοὺς ἐπᾶραι. The common explana “would not lift up even his eyes, ” much less his hands and his face (1 Timothy 2:8; 1 Kings 8:22; Psalms 28:2, Psalms 63:4, Psalms 134:2), does not seem to be satisfactory. The οὐδέ strengthens the previous οὐκ and need not be taken exclusively with, τοὺς ὀφθαλμούς; “would not even lift up his eyes to heaven, ” much less adopt any confident or familiar attitude towards God. See Maldonatus, ad loc. Some Rabbis taught that it was necessary to keep the eyes down or to close them in praying (Schœttgen, 1: p. 307).


ἔτυπτε. “He continued to smite”; tundebat (d), percutiebat (Vulg Comp. 8:52, 23:48. Om. εἰς after ἔτυπτε א B L.

ἱλάσθητί μοι τῷ ἁμαρτωλῷ. “Be merciful (Daniel 9:19) to me the sinner.” He also places himself in a class by himself; but he makes no comparisons. Consciousness of his own sin is supreme; de nemine alio homine cogitat (Beng.). For similar self-accusation comp. Psalms 25:11, 40:12, 51:3; Ezra 9:6; Daniel 9:8; 1 Timothy 1:15. The verb occurs elsewhere in N.T. only Hebrews 2:17, with acc. of the sin. In LXX it is not common. Psalms 64:3, with acc. of the sin. Ps. 24:11, 77:38, Psalms 78:9, with dat. of the sin. 2 Kings 5:18, with dat, of the person, as here. The compound ἐξιλάσκομαι is the more usual word. The classical construction with acc. of the person propitiated is not found in bibl. Grk., because the idea of “propitiating God” is not to be encouraged. “The ‘propitiation’ acts on that which alienates God and not on God, whose love is unchanged throughout” (Wsctt. on Hebrews 2:17, and Additional Note on 1 John 2:2, Epp. of S. John, p. 83).


The Latin Versions have propitiare (c ff2 1), repropitiare (b), miserere (d), propitius esto (Vulg.). See Deissmann, Bible Studies, p. 224.

14. λέγω ὑμῖν. As often, this formula introduces an important declaration uttered with authority (7:26, 28, 9:27, 10:12, 24, 11:9, 51, 12:4, 5, 8, 27, 37, 44, 51, 13:3, etc.). Here Christ once more claims to know the secrets both of man’s heart and of God’s judgments.

κατέβη οὖτος δεδικαιωμένος. The pronoun perhaps looks back to the contemptuous οὖτος in vet. 11. “This despised man went down justified in the sight of God,” i.e. “accounted as righteous, accepted.” Comp. 7:35, 10:29, 16:15; Isaiah 50:8, 53:11; Job 33:32. The Talmud says, “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” (Schœttgen, 1. p. 308).


παρʼ ἐκεῖνον. The expression is one of comparison, and of itself does not exclude the possibility of the Pharisee being justified in some smaller degree. Comp. 13:2, 4. But the context perhaps excludes it. Thus Tertullian (Adv. Marcion. iv. 36), ideoque alterum reprobatum, alterum justificatum. Also Euthym. (ad loc.), ὁ δικαιώσας μόνον ἑαυτὸ κατεδικάσθη παρὰ Θεοῦ, ὁ δὲ καταδικάσας μόνον ἑαυτὸν ἐδικαιώθη παρὰ Θεοῦ. Aug., however, points out that the Scripture does not say that the Pharisee was condemned (Ep. xxxvi. 4, 7).

The readings are various, but παρʼ ἐκεῖνον (א B L, Boh. Sah., Orig. Naz.) may be safely adopted: ab illo (Vulg.) is a misrepresentation of this, and μαλλον παρʼ αικεινον τον φαρισειον (D) an amplification of it. The ἢ ἐκεῖνος (min.pauc.) of Elz. is a gloss; which, however, may have helped to produce the common reading ἢ ὰρ ἐκεῖνος (A A G H K M P Q etc.), ΠΑΠ being changed to ΓΑΠ. If ἤ γὰρ ἐκεῖνος (Tisch., Treg. marg.) be adopted, it must be interrogative: “I say to you, this man went down to his house justified—or did the other do so?” Other Latin variations are præ illum pharisæum (a), magis guam ille pharisæus (b c e), to which some add qui so exaltabat (f ff2 i l q r). ἦ παρʼ ἐκεῖνον (Hofm. Kell) and ἤπερ ἐκεῖνος (Hahn) are conjectures. See Blass, Gr. pp. 106, 139.

ὅτι πᾶς ὁ ἑψῶν, κ.τ.λ. Verbatim as 14:2 (where see note), which Weiss pronounces to be its original position, while its appearance here is due to Lk. Why is it assumed that Jesus did not repeat His sayings?

The suggestion (Aug. Bede) that the Pharisee represents the Jews and the publican the Gentiles cannot be accepted. Nor need we suppose (Godet) that Lk. is here showing that the Pauline doctrine of justification was based on the teaching of Christ. There is nothing specially Pauline here. We are not told that the publican was justified by faith in Christ, but by confession of sin and prayer. The meaning is simple. Christ takes a crucial case. One generally recognized as a saint fails in prayer, while one generally recognized as a sinner succeeds. Why? Because the letter’s prayer is real, and the former’s not. The one comes in the spirit of prayer,—self-humiliation; the other in the spirit of pride,—self-satisfaction.

15-17. Little Children brought to Christ. Matthew 19:13-15; Mark 10:13-16. The narrative of Lk., which has been proceeding tindependently since 9:51, here rejoins Mt. and Mk. The three narratives are almost verbatim alike. Where Lk. differs either he has an expression peculiar to himself, as τὰ βρέφη (ver. 15) or προσεκαλέσατο (ver. 16); or he and Mk. agree against Mt., as in αὐτῶν ἅπτηται (ver. 15), ἔρχεσθαι and τοῦ Θεοῦ (ver. 16), ὃς ἂνμὴ δέξηται, κ.τ.λ. (ver. 17), where Mt. varies considerably in wording. Only in the καί before μὴ κωλύετε (ver. 16) does Lk agree with Mt. against Mk.

15. Προσέφερον δὲ αὐτῷ καὶ τὰ βρέφη. The δὲ and καὶ τὰ βρέφη are peculiar to Lk. For δέ Mk. has καί and Mt. τότε: for καὶ τὰ βρέφη both have simply παιδὶα. “Now people were bringing to Him even their babes,” or “their babes also,” as well as sick folk. In any case βρέφος must be rendered here as in 2:12, 16: comp. 1:41, 44; Acts 7:19; 1 Peter 2:2. AV. has “babe,” “infant,” and “young child.” Vulg. has infans throughout.

ἅπτηται Mt. says more distinctly, τὰς χείρας ἐπιθῇ καὶ προσεύξηται. Blessing them is meant: comp. Genesis 48:14, Genesis 48:15.


The pres. subj. after imperf. indic. is a constr. that is freq. in LXX. It shows how the opt, is going out of use. But here it might be explained as expressing the thought of those who brought the babes, a thought put in a direct form for the sake of vividness: “that He may touch” for “that He might touch.” Win. 41. b. 1. a, p. 360.

ἐπετίμων αὐτοῖς Not because, as Chrysostom and Theophylact suggest they thought that little children were unworthy to approach Him; but because they thought it a waste of His time and an abuse of His kindness; or, as Jerome, followed closely by Bede, puts it, eum in similitudineum hominum offerentium importunitate lassari. On the first anniversary of their birth Jewish children were sometimes brought to the Rabbi to be blest.

Lk. has the imperf. in both places, προσὲφερον…ἐπετίμων: Mt. προσηνέχθησοαν…ἐπετίμησαν: Mk. προσέφερον…ἐπετίμησαν.

16. προσεκαλέσατο. Even if with B we omit αὐτά, this would mean that He called the children (with their parents), and then addressed the disciples. Mk. has ἰδὼν…ἠγανάκτησεν Mt. simply εἶπεν.

μὴ κωλύετε. “Cease to forbid.” The wording is almost identical in all three narratives. Jerome and Euthym. (on Matthew 19:14) point out that Christ does not say τούτων but τοιούτων, ut ostenderet non ætatem regnare sed mores. It is not these children, nor all children, but those who are childlike in character, especially in humility and trustfulness, who are best fitted for the Kingdom.

17. Verbatim as in Mark 10:15. Mt. gives a similar saying on a different occasion (18:3, 4). The δέξηται explains the τοιούτων: a child receives what is offered to it, in full trust that it is good for it, μηδὲν διακρινόμενος μηδὲ�

18-30. The Rich Young Ruler who preferred his Riches to the Service of Christ. Matthew 19:16-30; Mark 10:17-31. In all three narratives this section follows immediately upon the one about bringing children to Christ. This young ruler is humiliated by being told that there is still a great deal to be done before he is qualified for ζωὴ αἰώνιος. Thus the lessons supplement one another. The children, like the publican, are nearer the Kingdom than they could suppose themselves to be; the rich young man, like the Pharisee, is farther from it than he supposed himself to be. Those who can be benefited by being abased (9, 22), are abased; while those who cannot be harmed by being exalted (16), are exalted. Here again Lk. often agrees with Mk. in small details of wording against Mt., and only once �


18. ἄρχων. Lk. alone tells us this, and we are in doubt what he means by it. His being a νεανίσκος as Mt. tells us (19:20, 22), is rather against his being a member of the Sanhedrin or a ruler of a synagogue. Weiss, Neander, and others conjecture that νεανίσκος is an error, perhaps an inference drawn by Mt. from Christ’s charge, especially τίμα τὸν πατέρα σου, κ.τ.λ. Certainly ἐκ νεότητος (which is wanting in the best texts of Mt.) does not seem appropriate to a νεανίσκος. Yet Holtzmann supposes that νεανίσκος has been added through a misconception of ἐκ νεότητος But the rich ruler’s self-confidence might easily make him pose as an older man than he really was. Keim seems to be nearer the truth when he says that “the whole impression is that of an eager and immature young man” (Jes. of Naz. v. p. 36). The statement of Mk., that he ran to Jesus and kneeled to Him (10:17), indicates youthful eagerness.

τί ποιήσας, κ.τ.λ.. See on 10:25, where the same question is asked. In Mt the “good is transferred from “Master” to “what,” Αιδάσκαλε, τί�Matthew 19:16.

19. Τί με λέγεις�John 5:19-30). Non se magistrum non esse, sed magistrum absque Deo nullum bonum esse testatur (Bede). There is no need to add to this the thought that the goodness of Jesus was the goodness of perfect development (see on 2:52), whereas the goodness of God is that of absolute perfection (Weiss on Mark 10:18).


οὐδεὶς�

Here Lk. exactly agrees with Mk., except that he places the seventh before the sixth commandment, and omits, as Mt. does, μὴ�Romans 13:9, James 2:11, and in Cod. B of Deuteronomy 5:17 adultery is mentioned before murder. Philo says that in the second πεντάς of the decalogue adultery is placed first as μέγιστον�Exo_20. and Deut, 5, Οὐ φονεύσεις κ.τ.λ. So also Romans 13:9. In Mk. and James 2:11, Μὴ φονεύσῃς.


21. ταῦτα πάντα ἐφύλαξα ἐκ νεότητος. Not so much a boast, as an expression of dissatisfaction. “I wanted to be told of something special and sublime; and I am reminded of duties which I have been performing all my life.” The reply exhibits great ignorance of self and of duty, but is perfectly sincere.

That it was possible to keep the whole Law is an idea which is frequent in the Talmud. Abraham, Moses, and Aaron were held to have done so. R. Chanina says to the Angel of Death, “Bring me the book of the Law, and see whether there is anything written in it which I have not kept” (Schoettg. 1. pp. 160, 161. See also Edersh. L. & T. 1. p. 536).

Here, as in Matthew 19:20; Genesis 26:5; Exodus 12:17, Exodus 20:6, we have the act. of φυλάττω: Mark 10:20; Leviticus 18:4, Leviticus 18:20:8, Leviticus 18:22, Leviticus 18:26:3, the mid. without difference of sense.


22.�

Ἔτι ἕν σοι λείπει. Mk. has ἕν σε ὑστερεῖ. Mt. transfers the words to the young man, τί ἔτι ὑστερῶ; Christ neither affirms nor denies the ruler’s statement of his condition. Assuming it to be correct, there is still something lacking, viz. detachment from his wealth. In what follows we have two charges, one to sell and distribute; the other to follow Christ; and the first is preparatory to the second. But we may not separate them and make the first the one thing lacking and the second the answer to τί ποιήσας in ver. 18. In ἕξεις θησαυρὸν ἐν τοῖς οὐρανοῖς we have a clear reference to ζωὴν αἰώνιον, and this promise is attached to the first charge. The πάντα (comp. 6:30, 7:35, 9:43, 11:4) and the compound διάδος (11:22; Acts 4:35; elsewhere only John 6:11) are here peculiar to Lk.


Mt., having transferred the words about “lacking something yet” to the rich young man, gives Christ’s reply Εἰ θέλεις τέλειος εἶναι in place of Ἔτι ἕν σοι λείπει. These words cannot mean a perfection superior to the fulfilment of the Law, for no such perfection is possible (17:10). A misconception is point led to the distinction between the performance of duty and moral perfection, which has produced much error in moral theology. Clam. Alex. rightly says, ὄταν εἴπῃ Εἰ θέλεις τέλειος γενέσθαι (sic), πωλήσας τὰ ὑπάρχοντα δὸς πτωχοῖς, ἐλέγχει τὸν καυχώμενον ἐπὶ τῷ πάσας τὰς ἐντολὰς ἐκ νεότητος τετηρηκέναι· οὐ γὰρ πεπληρώκει τό, Ἀγαπήσεις τὸν πλησίον σου ὡς ἑαυτόν· τότε δέ, ὑπὸ τοῦ Κυριου συντελειούμενος, ἐδιδάσκετο διʼ�

23. περίλυπος. Stronger than λυπούμενος (Mt. Mk.), to which Mk. adds the graphic στυγνάσας (Ezekiel 32:10; [Matthew 16:3]). For περίλυπος comp. Mark 6:26, Mark 6:14:34; Matthew 26:38. He wanted to follow Christ’s injunctions, but at present the cost seemed to him to be too great.


πλούσιος σφόδρα. The statement explains, and perhaps in some measure excuses, his distress. He possessed a great deal more than a boat and nets; and Peter, James, and John were not told to sell their boats and nets and give the proceeds to the poor; because their hearts were not wedded to them.

24. Πῶς δυσκόλως. All three have this adv., which occurs nowhere else in bibl. Grk. Clam. Alex. seems to allude to the saying when he writes ὁ λόγος τουὺς τελώμας λέγει δυσκόλως σωθήσεται (Strom. v. 5. p. 662, ed. Potter). Lk. omits the departure of the ruler, which took place before these words were uttered. Mk. alone records (10:24) the consternation which they excited in the disciples, and Christ’s repetition of them. It was perhaps largely for the sake of Judas that these stern words about the perils of wealth were uttered to them.

25. In the Talmud an elephant passing through the eye of a needle is twice used of what is impossible; also a camel dancing in a very small corn measure. See Lightfoot, Schœttgen, and Wetstein, ad loc. For εὐκοπώτερον see small print on 5:23. The reading κάμιλον = “cable” here and Matthew 19:24 is an attempt to tone down a strong statement. It is found only in a few late MSS. The word κάμιλος occurs only in Suidas and a scholiast on Aristoph. Vesp. 1030. Some would give the meaning of “cable” to κάμηλος (so Cyril on Matthew 19:24), but no doubt the animal is meant. Others would make the “needle’s eye” into a narrow gateway for foot-passengers; but this also is erroneous. See Expositor, Ist series, 3. p. 369, 1876; WH. 2. App. p. 151. For βελόνης, which occurs nowhere else in bibl. Grk., Mt. and Mk. have ῥαφίνη, and for τρήματος Mk. has τρυμαλιᾶς. Hobart claims both βελόη and τρῆμα as medical, the former with good reason (p. 60).


Celsus said that this saying of Christ was borrowed along with others from Plato. But the passage which he quoted from the Laws (v. p. 742) merely says that a man cannot be at once very good and very rich. There is nothing about a camel or a needle. Orig. Con. Cels. 6:16, 1. The saying in the Koran (7:38), “Neither shall they enter into paradise, until a camel through the eye of a needle,” is probably taken from the Gospels (Sale, p. 108).

It is specially to be noted that this hard saying about the difficulty of those who have riches entering into the Kingdom of God is in all three Gospels and not merely in the one which is supposed to be Ebionite in tone. Comp. Matthew 6:19-21; Mark 12:41, Mark 12:42. Lk.omits the great amazement, ἐξεπλήσσντο σφόδρα (Mt.), περισσῶς ἐξεπλήσσοντο (Mk.), which this second utterance on the impediments caused by wealth excited in the disciples.


The Latin translator of Origen’s comm, on Mat_19. has the following extract from “a certain Gospel which is called According to the Hebrews.” But neither this preface not the extract are in the Greek text of Origen. Dixit ad eum alter divitum, Magisterter, quid bonum faciens vivam ? Dixit ei, Homo, legem et prophetas fac. Respondit ad eum, Feci. Dixit ei, Vade, vende omnia quæ possides et divide pauperibus et veni, sequere me. Coepit autem dives scalpere caput suum (sic), et non placuit ei: Et dixit ad eum Dominus, Quomodo dicis Legem feci et prosphetas ? quoniam scriptum est in lege Diliges proximum tuum sicut te ipsum, et ecce multi fratres tui, filii Abrahæ amicti sunt stercore, morientes præ fame, et demur tua plena est multis bonis, et non egreditur omnino aliquid ex ea ad eos. Et conversus dixit Simoni discipulo suo, sedenti apud se, Simon, fili Johannæ, facilius est camelum intrare per foramen acus quam divitem in regnum cæorum. See also the fragment quoted from the narrative of the man with the withered hand (Luke 6:8). These specimens explain why the Gospel according to the Hebrews was allowed to pass into oblivion. and it is difficult to believe that this Nazarene Gospel was the original Hebrew of our Mt. If it was, “our Greek Evangelist must have been a most unfaithful translator” (Salmon, Int. to N.T. p. 166, 5th ed.). We may add that he must have been a person of very superior taste and ability.

26. Καὶ τίς δύναται σωθῆναι; Not “what rich man” (Weiss), but “what person of any description”: Numbers 24:23. The whole world either possesses or aims at possessing wealth. If, then, what every one desires is fatal to salvation, who can be saved? The καί adds emphasis to the question, which arises out of what has just been said: Comp. 10:29; John 9:36; 2 Corinthians 2:2.


27. Τὰ�

Not only before proper names which begin with a vowel (Mt :28:15; John 1:40), but also in other cases, παρά sometimes is found unelided; παρὰ ἁμαρτωλῷ (19:7). This is commonly the case before ἄνθρωπος: comp. Matthew 19:26; Mark 10:27; John 5:34, John 5:41; Galatians 1:12.

δυνατὰ παρὰ τῷ Θεῷ. Zacchæus proved this (19:1-10). Comp. Zechariah 8:6; Job 42:2. For parallels from profane writers see Grotius and Wetstein on Matthew 19:26. But παρὰ�Genesis 18:14; Jeremiah 32:17, Jeremiah 32:27; Zechariah 8:6.


28. εἶπεν δὲ ὁ Πέτρος. His being the one to speak is characteristic; but he does not speak in a spirit of boastfulness. Rather it is the reaction from their consternation which moves him to speak: spe ex verbis Salvatoris concepts (Bang.). He wants to be assured that God’s omnipotence has been exerted on their behalf, and that they may hope to enter the Kingdom. Mt adds τί ἄρα ἔσται ἡμῖν; Note the εἶπεν δέ, which neither Mt. nor Mk. has.

29. Ἀμὴν λέγω ὑμῖν. In all three: it is a declaration of great moment. Not only has God done this for the Twelve, but for many others: and every one who has had grace to surrender is sure of his reward. Lk. alone has γυναῖκα, and alone omits�

Between λάβῃ (B D M, Arm.), which may come from Mk., and�Romans 1:27; Colossians 3:24; 2 John 1:8. It is often used with τ. μισθόν (Xen. Anab. vii. 7, 14; Her. 8:137, 6). Vulg. has et non recipiat.

ἐν τῷ καιρῷ τούτῳ. Note the contrast with τῷ αἰῶνι: not merely in this world, but in this season. So also in Mk. Comp. ἐν τῷ νῦν καιρῷ (Romans 3:26, Romans 8:18), and τὸν καιρὸν τὸν ἐνεστηκότα (Hebrews 9:9), which means the same: see Wsctt.

ἐν τῶ αἰῶνι τῷ ἐρχομένῳ. “In the age which is in process of being realized.” See on 7:19, and comp. Ephesians 1:21, Ephesians 1:2:7; Hebrews 6:5. Bengal remarks that Scripture in general is more explicit about temporal punishments than temporal rewards, but about eternal rewards than eternal punishments.

Millermarians made use of this promise as an argument for their views. It would be in the millennium that the faithful would receive literally a hundredfold of what they had given up for the Kingdom’s sake: non intelligentes quod si in cæteris digna sit refiromissio, in uxoribus appareat turpitudo; ut qui unam pro Domino dimiserit, et centum recipiat in futuro (Jerome on Matthew 19:29).


Lk. omits the saying about last being first and first last, having already recorded it in a different connexion (13:30).

31-34. The Third Announcement of the Passion. Matthew 20:17-19; Mark 10:32-34. For previous announcements (just before and just after the Transfiguration) see 9:22, 44. The raising of Lazarus should probably be placed here. The decree of the Sanhedrin for the arrest of Jesus had very likely already been passed when our Lord made this new announcement of His death. Apostolis sæpius dixit et indies expressius, ut in posterum testes essent præscientiæ iprsius (Grotius).


The εἷπεν (ver. 31) is the one item which Lk. and Mt. have in common against Mk. In several expressions in vv. 32, 33 Lk. agrees with Mk. against Mt. The εἶπεν πρός the πάντα (see on 7:35, 9:43, 11:4), τὰ γεγραμμένα (see on 22:37), and all of ver. 34 are peculiar to Lk.’s account.

31. παραλαβών. “Took to Himself” (9:28, 11:26; Acts 15:39). The notion of taking aside, away from the multitude, is involved, but is not prominent. In class, Grk. it is freq. of taking a wife, a companion, an ally, or adopting a son. This announcement specially concerned the Twelve who were to accompany Him to Jerusalem. See the graphic account of their behaviour Mark 10:32.

διὰ τῶν προφητῶν. This is the regular expression for the utterances of prophecy: they are spoken by means of the Prophets.” The Prophet is not an originating agent, but an instrument. But this is the only place in which the phrase occurs in Lk., who says little to his Gentile readers about the fulfilment of prophecy. Comp. Matthew 1:22, Matthew 1:2:5, Matthew 1:15, Matthew 1:23, Matthew 1:4:14, Matthew 1:8:17, Matthew 1:12:7, Matthew 1:13:35, etc. In Matthew 2:17 and 3:3 ὑπό is a false reading. Comp. Haggai 2:2.—See Gould on Mark 10:33, Mark 10:34.

τῷ υἱῷ τοῦ�Matthew 13:14). But for this Lk. elsewhere has ἐν τῷ υἱῶς τ.�

32. παραδοθήσεται γὰρ τοῖς ἔθνεσιν. This is a new element of definiteness in the prophecy, and it almost carries with it, what Matthew 20:19 distinctly expresses, that the mode of death will be crucifixion. It is said that this prediction has been made more definite by the Evangelist, who has worded it in accordance with accomplished facts. But, in that case, why were not 9:22 and 44 made equally definite? That Christ should gradually reveal more details is in harmony with probability. Lk., however, omits the high priests and scribes, and their condemning Christ to death before handing Him over to the heathen, although both Mt. (10:18) and Mk. (10:33) say that Jesus predicted these details on this occasion. Here Lk. alone has ὑβρισθήσεται (11:45; Acts 14:5; elsewhere twice).


33. τῇ ἡμέρᾳ τῇ τρίτῃ. Mk. has the less accurate μετὰ τρεῖς ἡμέρας, which can hardly have been invented to fit the facts. While the prediction of His death might shake the disciples’ faith in His Messiahship, the prediction of His rising again was calculated to establish it.

34. καὶ αὐτοὶ οὐδὲν τούτων συνῆκαν. Comp. 2:50. Note the characteristic καὶ αὐτοί and ἦν κεκρυμμένον. Lk. alone mentions the appeal to prophecy (ver. 31), and he alone states—with three-fold emphasis—that the Twelve did not at all understand. But Mt. and Mk. illustrate this dulness a apprehension by the request of the sons of Zebedee for the right and left hand places in the Kingdom, which Lk. omits. Their minds were too full of an earthly kingdom to be able to grasp the idea of a Messiah who was to suffer and to die: and without that they could not understand His rising again, and did not at first believe when they were told that He had risen. Their dulness was providential, and it became a security to the Church for the truth of the Resurrection. The theory that they believed, because they expected that He would rise again, is against all the evidence. Comp. 9:45.

κεκρυμμένον�2 Kings 4:27; Psalms 118:19?; Isaiah 40:27; Jeremiah 39:17. This statement is not identical with either of the other two. It explains the fact that they not only did not understand any of this at the time, but “did not get to know (ἐγίωσκον) the things that were said.”

35-43. The Healing of Blind Bartimæus at Jericho. Matthew 20:29-34; Mark 10:46-52. This miracle probably took place in the week preceding that of the Passion.

The three narratives have exercised the ingenuity of harmonizers. Lk. and Mk. have only one blind man; Mt. again mentions two (comp. Matthew 9:27). Lk. represents the miracle as taking place when Jesus was approaching Jericho; Mt and Mk. as taking place when He was leaving it. Lk. says that Jesus healed with a command,�Matthew 20:34). 2. As Christ entered Jericho, Bartimæus cried for help, and was not healed; he then joined a second blind man, and with him made an appeal as Jesus left Jericho, and then both were healed (Calvin and Maldon. Followed by Wordsw.). 3. One blind man was healed as He entered, Bartimæus, and another as He left (Aug. Quæst. Evang. 2:48). 4. One was healed as He entered and one as He left; and Mt. combines the first with the second (even Neander inclines to this, L. J. C. § 236, note). 5. There were two Jerichos, Old and New, and Lk. means that Jesus was approaching New Jericho, Mt. and Mk. that He was leaving Old Jericho (Macknight), although there is no evidence that Old Jericho was still inhabited, or that “Jericho” without epithet could at this time mean anything but the city which was given by Antony to Cleopatra, and afterwards redeemed by Herod the Great (Jos. Ant. 15:4, 2, 4). See Stanley, Sin. & Pal. p. 310; also some good remarks by Sadler on Mark 10:46, to the effect that “the inspiration of the Evangelists did not extend to minutiæ of this sort”, and by Harvey Goodwin against forced explanations (Gosp. of S. Luke, p. 311, Bell, 1865). 6. See below on ver. 35. The narrative of Mk., who gives the name Bartimæus and other details, is probably the most exact of the three. See Wsctt. Intr. to the Gospels, ch. 7. p. 367, 7th ed.

The attempts of Hitzig and Keim to use the name, which in Syriac may perhaps mean “son of the blind,” to discredit the whole narrative, are rightly condemned by comes Weiss (L. J. 2. p. 439, Eng. tr. 3. p. 222). Strauss suggests that the name comes from ἐπετίμων (ver. 39; Mark 10:48)and ἐπετίμησε (Matthew 20:31) (L. J. § 71, p. 429, 1864). For other possible meanings see Lightfoot, Hor. Heb. ad loc..


35. ἐν τῷ ἐγγίζειν αὐτὸν εἰς Ἰερειχώ. The translation, “When He was not far from Jericho,” i.e. as He had just left it (Grotius, Nösgen), is perhaps the worst device for harmonizing Lk. with Mt. and Mk. The meaning of ἐγγίζειν is decisive; and there is the εἰς in addition. Both Herod the Great and Archelaus had beautified and enlarged Jericho, which at this time must have presented a glorious appearance (D.B.2 art. “Jericho”). It was here that Herod had died his horrible death (Jos. B. J. 1:33, 6, 7).

Note the characteristic ἐγένετο and ἐν τῷ c. infin. See on 3:21, and comp. 2 Samuel 15:5.

In class. Grk. ἐγγίζειν is not common, and usually has the dat. In bbl. Grk. it is very frequent; sometimes with dat., esp. in the phrase ἐγγίζειν τῷ θεῷ (James 4:8; Exodus 19:22; Leviticus 10:3; Isaiah 29:13, etc.); sometimes with πρός (Genesis 45:4, 48:10; Exodus 19:21, etc.); and also with εἰς (19:29, 24:28; Matthew 21:1; Mark 11:1; Tob. 6:10 א, 11:1). In N.T. ἐγγίζειν is always intrans.


For ἐπαιτῶν (א B D L, Orig.) A P Q R etc. have προσαιτῶν. Comp. 16:3.

36. ὄχλου διαπορευομένου. The caravan of pilgrims going up to the Passover. See on 6:1 and on 11:29; also Edersh. Hist. of J. N. p. 255, ed. 1896. Leaving His place of retirement (John 11:54, John 11:55), Jesus had joined this caravan; and it is probable that He came to Jericho in order to do so. The crowd was there, according to all three narratives, before the miracle took place. This shows how untenable is the view of Keim, Holtzmann, and Weiss, that Lk. has purposely transferred the healing from the departure to the entry in order to account for the crowd at the meeting with Zacchæus (19:3): the miracle produced the crush of people. But according to Lk. himself the crowd was there before the miracle.

ἐπύθάνετο τί ἔη τοῦτο. In N.T. πυνθάνομαι is almost peculiar to Lk. (15:26, where see note; Acts 4:7, Acts 4:10:18, Acts 4:29, etc.). Omitting ἄν with א A B P etc. against D K L M Q R X, “He enquired what this was,” not “what this possibly might be.” Matthew 2:4; John 4:52.


37. For�

υἱὲ Δαυείς. This shows that he recognizes Jesus as the Messiah (Matthew 9:27, Matthew 9:12:23, Matthew 9:15:22, Matthew 9:21:9, Matthew 9:15). It is not this which the multitude resent, but the interruption: comp. 5:15. They regard him as an ordinary beggar, asking for money. And Jesus was perhaps teaching as He went. Mk. tells us how the attitude of the people changed towards him, when they saw that Jesus had decided to listen to him. See Gould on Mark 10:47.

39. σιγήσῃ. Excepting Romans 16:25 and 1 Corinthians 14:28, 1 Corinthians 14:30, 1 Corinthians 14:34, the verb is peculiar to Lk. in N.T. (9:36, 20:26; Acts 12:17, Acts 12:15:12, Acts 12:13). Mt. and Mk. have σιωπᾷν, which א A Q R, Orig. read here.


ἔκραζεν. Note the change of verb and tense from ἐβόησεν While βοάω is specially an intelligent cry for help, κράζω is often an instinctive cry or scream, a loud expression of strong emotion. In class. Grk. κράζω is often used of the cries of animals. The two words are sometimes joined (Dem. De Cor. p. 271; Aristoph. Plut. 722). Mt. and Mk. have κράζω in both places, and Mt. has the aor. in both. The man’s persistency is evidence of his faith, which Christ recognizes.

40. σταθείς. See on ver. 11: the others have στάς. Excepting in Mt. and Acts, where the verb is common, κελεύω occurs here only in N.T. In LXX it is found only in the Apocrypha. Mk. here describes the man’s casting away1 his ἱμάτιον and leaping up to come to Jesus, when the people had passed on to him Christ’s command. Christ’s making those who had rebuked him to be the bearers of His invitation to him is to be noted.

With the constr., ἐγγίσαντος … αὐτόν instead of ἐγγίσαντα, comp. 12:36, 15:20, 17:12, 22:10, 53; Acts 4:1, Acts 21:17.


41. τί σοι θέλεις ποιήσω; Not that Jesus gives him carte blanche (Godet) to have anything that he likes; but that He will make clear to the multitude that this is no ordinary beggar, but one who has faith to ask to be healed. For the constr. see on 9:54. Both Mt. (14:19, 20:34) and Lk. (19:5) use�

43. παραχρῆμα. Mk. has εὐθύς Comp. 5:25, 8:44, 55, 22:60. Lk. alone records that the man glorified God, and that the people followed his example; comp. 9:43. The poctical word αἶνος is not rare in LXX, but occurs in N.T. only here an in a quotation from Psalms 8:2 in Matthew 21:16. With αἶνον διδόναι comp δόξαν διδόναι (17:18; Romans 4:20; Revelation 4:9).


It is worth while to collect together the characteristics of Lk.’s style which are very conspicuous in this section, especially when it is compared with Mt. and Mk. In ver. 35 we have ἐγένετο, ἐν τῷ c. infin., and ἐπαιτῶν (only here and 16:3); in ver. 36, διαπορευομένου (6:1, 13:22) and ἐπυνθάνετο (15:26); in ver. 37,�

1 In Syr-Sin.Timai Bar-Timai “rose and took up his garment, and came, to Jesus.” Comp. John 21:7. In Diatess. Tat. he asks for sight, “that I may see Thee.”

Bibliographical Information
Driver, S.A., Plummer, A.A., Briggs, C.A. "Commentary on Luke 18". International Critical Commentary NT. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/icc/luke-18.html. 1896-1924.
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