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Bible Commentaries

Heinrich Meyer's Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament
Luke 13

 

 

Other Authors
Introduction

CHAPTER 13

Luke 13:3; Luke 13:5. The evidence in the two verses is so divided between μετανοῆτε (Elz.) and μετανοήσητε (Lach.), as also between ὡσαύτως and ὁμοίως (Lachm. has in both places ὁμοίως, which Elz. reads only in Luke 13:5), that it affords us no means of decision. Tisch. reads in Luke 13:3, μετανοῆτεὁμοίως, but in Luke 13:5, μετανοήσητεὡσαύτως. It is certain that the one passage was changed in accordance with the other,—most probably Luke 13:5 in accordance with Luke 13:3, and that consequently both passages are not, as by Lachm., to be read alike, because in that case no reason would have been suggested for the variation.

Luke 13:4. Instead of οὗτοι Lachm. and Tisch. have, on preponderating evidence, αὐτοί. The Recepta is a frequent alteration.

Luke 13:6. The arrangement πεφυτευμ. ἐν τ. ἀμπ. αὐτ. (Lachm. Tisch.) is preponderatingly attested, and still more strongly is ζητῶν καρπ. (Elz. has καρπ. ζ.).

Luke 13:7. After ἔτη Tisch. has ἀφʼ οὗ, following B D L T5 א, al. Rightly; it was passed over because it could be dispensed with.

Luke 13:8. Elz. has κοπρίαν. But decisive authorities have κόπρια. The feminine form was more common from its use in the LXX.

Luke 13:11. ἦν] is wanting after γυνή in B L T5 X א, min. vss. Lachm. Tisch. A frequent addition.

Luke 13:12. τῆς] Lachm. has ἀπὸ τῆς, in accordance with A D X π א, min. An exegetical expansion.

Luke 13:14. ταύταις] A B L, etc. have αὐταῖς. So too Lachm. and Tisch. Rightly; ταύταις occurred readily to the transcribers; comp. on Luke 13:4.

Luke 13:15. Instead of ὑποκριτά (Elz.), ὑποκριταί is rightly approved by Griesb., and adopted by Lachm. and Tisch., in accordance with considerably preponderating evidence. The singular was introduced in accordance with the foregoing αὐτῷ. In the previous clause instead of οὖν read δέ, with Lachm. and Tisch., in accordance with B D L א, min. Syr. Copt. Sahid. Vulg. It This δέ easily dropped out after the last syllable of ἀπεκρίθη (thus still in one cod. of It.), and the connection that was thus broken was wrongly restored in some authorities by οὖν, in others by καί (16, Aeth.).

On the other hand, in Luke 13:18, instead of δέ we are to adopt οὖν with Tisch., following B L א, min. Vulg. It. al., the reference of which was not understood.

Luke 13:19. μέγα] is wanting in B D L T5 א, 251, vss. Ambr. Suspected by Griesb., bracketed by Lachm. [omitted by Tisch. 8]. Omitted in accordance with Matthew 13:32.

Luke 13:24. πύλης] Griesb. Lachm. Tisch. have θύρας. The Recepta is from Matthew 7:13.

Luke 13:25. We are here to read κύριε only once, with Tisch., following B L א, 157, Copt. Sahid. Vulg. It. Sax. The repetition is from Matthew 25:11.

Luke 13:31. ἡμέρᾳ] Tisch. has ὥρᾳ, which is so weightily attested by A B* D L R X א, min., and is so frequent in Luke, that ἡμέρᾳ appears as having come in by means of the subsequent numeration of days.

Luke 13:32. ἐπιτελῶ] Lachm. and Tisch. have ἀποτελῶ, in accordance with B L א, 33, 124, to which also D is associated by ἀποτελοῦμαι,—it was displaced by the more familiar word ἐπιτελ.

Luke 13:35. After ὑμῶν Elz. has ἔρημος, in opposition to preponderating evidence. An exegetical addition in this place and at Matthew 23:38.

ἕως ἄν] this ἄν is wanting in B D K L R, min., in accordance with Matthew 23:39.

ἥξει] Lachm. and Tisch. have ἥξει, in accordance with A D V δ λ, min. The weight of these authorities is all the more considerable in this place that B L M R X א have not ἥξῃ ὅτε at all, which omission occurred in accordance with Matthew.


Verses 1-9

Luke 13:1-9. Peculiar to Luke;(159) from the source of his account of the journey. At the same moment (when Jesus had spoken the foregoing discourse) there were some there with the news ( παρῆσάν τινες ἀπαγγέλλοντες, Diod. Sic. xvii. 8) of the Galileans ( τῶν γαλιλ. indicates by the article that their fate was known) whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. This expression is a tragically vivid representation of the thought: “whom Pilate caused to be put to death while engaged in their sacrifices.” See similar passages in Wetstein. That the communication was made with evil intention to represent the murdered people as special sinners (Lange), is a hasty inference from the answer of Jesus.

μετὰ τῶν θυσιῶν αὐτ.] not instead of μετὰ τοῦ αἵματος τῶν θυσ. αὐτ., which abbreviation, although in itself allowable, would here be arbitrarily assumed; but we may regard the people as actually engaged in the slaughter or cutting up, or in otherwise working with their sacrifice at the altar (in the outer court) (Saalschütz, M. R. p. 318), in which they were struck down or stabbed, so that their blood streamed forth on their offering.

The incident itself, which the τινές who had arrived mention as a novelty, is not otherwise known to us. Josephus, Antt. xviii. 5, is speaking of the Samaritans, and what he says belongs to a later date (in opposition to Beza). To think of followers of Judas the Gaulonite (Theophylact, Euthymius Zigabenus, Grotius, and others) is arbitrary; but the conjecture that they were enthusiastic devotees of Jesus (Lange) is preposterous, because it does not agree with the subsequent explanation of the Lord. Probably they had made themselves suspected or guilty of (secret) sedition, to which the Galileans were extremely prone (Joseph. Antt. xvii. 9. 3; Wetstein on the passage; see especially Rettig in the Stud. und Kritik. 1838, p. 980 f.). It is possible also that in the tumult that arose on account of the aqueduct built by Pilate (Joseph. Antt. xviii. 3. 2) they also had been drawn in (Ewald, Gesch. Chr. p. 40), with which building, moreover, might be connected the falling of the tower, Luke 13:4.


Verse 2-3

Luke 13:2-3. Jesus makes use of this news by way of warning, and to stir them up to repentance. He points to the slaughter of those people as an example of the divine punishment, which teaches not that the persons concerned are the most deserving of punishment, but that punishment, if carried into effect against individuals, must fall upon all (to wit, the whole class, so that in the application the Messianic punishment of eternal ἀπώλεια is intended(160)) if they should not have repented.

παρά] more than; see Bernhardy, p. 259; Buttmann, Neut. Gr. p. 292 [E. T. 339].

ἐγένοντο] not were ( ἦσαν), but became (see generally, C. F. A. Fritzsche in Fritzschior. Opusc. p. 284 f.)—to wit, declaratory: that they became known as sinners by the fact, namely, that they suffered such things ( πεπόνθ.), perf., see Winer, p. 242 [E. T. 338].


Verse 4-5

Luke 13:4-5. Likewise historically unknown.

πύργος] the well-known tower. What sort of a one it was is altogether uncertain; perhaps a tower of the town-walls (Joseph. Bell. v. 4. 2), so that the spring of Siloah is here meant (Joseph. l.c. says of the walls of the ancient city, πρὸς νότον ὑπὲρ τὴν σιλωὰμ ἐπιστρέφον τηγήν). As to the spring (on the south-east side of the ancient city) and the pool of Siloah, see on John 9:7.

ἐν τ. σιλ.] ἐν of the immediate neighbourhood, at. Comp. Xen. Anab. iv. 8. 32, and thereon, Kühner, Hom. Il. xviii. 521, and elsewhere.

καὶ ἀπέκτ. αὐτούς] a genuine Greek transition from a relative to a demonstrative sentence on account of the different government of the two verbs. Comp. on Luke 10:8.

αὐτοί] (see the critical remarks) they on their part, in opposition to the others, taking them up emphatically, Bornemann, ad Sympos. iv. 63, p. 154; Bernhardy, p. 290. Observe that ὡσαύτως is stronger than ὁμοίως, and hence most appropriately used at Luke 13:5.


Verses 6-9

Luke 13:6-9. Doctrine: the forbearance of God (of the Lord of the vineyard) endures only a short time longer; the ministry of me (the ἀμπελουργός) to you is the last attempt, and on it follows the decision—the decision of the Messianic judgment. Comp. Luke 3:9. Explanations entering more into detail, for instance, of the three years (Augustine, Theophylact, Bisping, and others: the times of the law, the prophets, and Jesus; Euthymius Zigabenus: the τρεῖς πολιτείαι of the judges, the kings, and the high priests), in which, moreover, are not to be found the years of the ministry of Jesus (Jansen, Bengel, Michaelis, Wieseler, Synopse, p. 202, but that there would appear, besides the three years, a fourth also, in which the results of the manuring were to show themselves), mistake the colouring of the parable for its purpose.(161)

συκῆν εἶχέ τις] a certain person possessed a fig-tree. The fig-tree in the vineyard is not opposed to Deuteronomy 22:9, for there trees are not spoken of.

Luke 13:7. According to the reading τρ. ἔτη ἀφʼ οὗ (see the critical remarks): It is three years since I, etc. Comp. Thucyd. i. 18. 2.

ἱνατὶ καὶ κ. τ. λ.] wherefore also (besides that it itself bears nothing), see Hermann, ad Viger. p. 837; Klotz, ad Devar. p. 635 ff. The καί belongs, as is often the case in questions, to the whole sentence (Baeumlein, Partikeln, p. 152).

καταργεῖ] it makes the land useless—to wit, by useless occupation of the space, by exhausting and shading it. Examples of καταργεῖν, inertem facere, Eur. Phoen. 760; Ezra 4:21; Ezra 4:23; Ezra 5:5; Ezra 6:8.

Luke 13:8. καὶ τοῦτο τὸ ἔτος] the present year also—as already those three ineffectual past years.

ἕως ὅτου κ. τ. λ.] until the time that I shall have dug, etc.—whereupon there shall occur, even according to the result, what is said at Luke 13:9.

κἂν μὲν ποιήσῃ καρπόν] and in case perchance it shall have brought forth fruit—even in the classical writers a frequent aposiopesis of the apodosis καλῶς ἔχει. See Valckenaer, Schol. p. 217; Hermann, ad Viger. p. 833; Buttmann, Neut. Gr. p. 339 [E. T. 396]. On the interchange of ἐάν and εἰ in such antitheses, in which the first conditional sentence is spoken with reference to the result, comp. Sauppe, ad Xen. Mem. ii. 6. 37; Stallbaum, ad Plat. Phaed. p. 93 B, Gorg. p. 470 A Winer, p. 263 [E. T. 369].

εἰς τὸ μέλλον] sc. ἔτος, at the following year, which therefore comes in with the next year’s fig-harvest, thou shalt cut it down. Let it still therefore remain so long. Comp. on Luke 1:20. To supply ἔτος is by means of the correlation to τοῦτο τὸ ἔτος, Luke 13:8, more strictly textual than the general notion postea (as it is usually taken).

ἐκκόψεις] “Non dicit vinitor: exscindam, coll. Luke 13:7, sed rem refert ad dominum; desinit tamen pro ficu deprecari,” Bengel.


Verses 10-17

Luke 13:10-17. A Sabbath cure peculiar to Luke, without any more precise specifying of time and place. He might find a motive for inserting it just in this place in his source of the narrative of the journey itself. But to explain its position here from the fact that the three years of Luke 13:7 had reminded him of the eighteen years of Luke 13:11 (Holtzmann, p. 153) would be fantastic.

Luke 13:11. ἦν] aderat.

πνεῦμα ἀσθενείας] a spirit of weakness, i.e. a demon (see Luke 13:16), who paralyzed her muscular powers, so that she could not straighten herself. This conception of ἀσθέν. is more in accordance with the context than the general one of sickness.

εἰς τὸ παντελές] comp. Hebrews 7:25, and thereon Bleek; Ael. xii. 20, v. 7. It belongs adverbially not to μὴ δύναμ. (de Wette, Bleek, and most commentators), but to ἀνακύψαι, with which it stands. She was bowed together (Sirach 12:11; Sirach 19:26 f., and in the Greek writers), and from this position to straighten herself up perfectly was to her impossible.

Luke 13:12. ἀπολέλυσαι] thou art loosed; that which will immediately occur is represented as already completed.

Luke 13:14. ἀποκριθείς] See on Matthew 11:25.

τῷ ὄχλῳ] Taking his stand upon Deuteronomy 5:13, he blames—not directly Jesus, for he could not for shame do so, but—the people, not specially the woman at all: Jesus was to be attacked indirectly.

Luke 13:15. ὑποκριταί] Euthymius Zigabenus aptly says: ὑποκριτὰς ὡνόμασε τοὺς κατὰ τὸν ἀρχισυνάγωγον (the class of men to which he belonged, the hierarchical opposition, comp. Luke 13:17), ὡς ὑποκρινομένους μὲν τιμᾶν τοῦ σαββάτου νόμον, ἐκδικοῦντας δὲ τὸν φθόνον ἑαυτῶν.

ἀπαγαγών] pictorially, “ad opus demonstrandum,” Bengel.

Luke 13:16. The argument is a minori ad majus (as Luke 14:5), and the majus is significantly indicated by the doubled description θυγατέρα ἀβρ. οὖσαν (comp. Luke 19:9) and ἣν ἔδησεν σατανᾶς κ. τ. λ. “Singula verba habent emphasin” (Grotius),—a remark which holds good also of the vividly introduced ἰδού, comp. Deuteronomy 8:4. As a daughter of Abraham, she belongs to the special people of God, and must hence be wrested from the devil. Of spiritual relationship with Abraham (Lechler in the Stud. u. Krit. 1854, p. 821) nothing is said.

ἣν ἔδησεν σατ.] since he, namely, by means of one of his servants, a demon, has taken away her liberty in the manner mentioned at Luke 13:11.

δέκα κ. τ. λ. is not a nominative, but an accusative of the duration of time. Comp. Luke 13:8; Luke 15:29, and elsewhere.

Luke 13:17. κατῃσχύν. πάντ. οἱ ἀντικ. αὐτ.] Comp. Isaiah 45:16.

γινομένοις] Present; describing the glorious work of Jesus as continuing.


Verses 18-20

Luke 13:18-20. Comp. on Matthew 13:31-33; Mark 4:31 f.

ἔλεγε οὖν] does not introduce the parables which follow in an indefinite and random manner (Strauss, I. p. 626; comp. de Wette and Holtzmann), which is erroneously inferred from Luke 13:17 regarded as a closing remark, and denies to Luke even the commonest skill in the management of his materials; but after the conclusion of the preceding incident (Luke 13:17) Jesus, in consequence ( οὖν, see the critical remarks) of the joy manifested by the people, sees Himself justified in conceiving the fairest hopes on behalf of the Messianic kingdom, and these He gives utterance to in these parables. This is how we find it in Luke; and his mode of connecting them with the context is so consistent with the facts, that from this quarter there is no opposition to our assuming as original in this place what, if not an exact repetition of the two parables already spoken at Matthew 13 and Mark 4, was at least an express reference to them. Even in the source of his narrative of the journey from which Luke draws from Luke 9:51 onwards, they might have been connected with the foregoing section, Luke 13:10-17.

Luke 13:19. εἰς κῆπον ἑαυτοῦ] into a garden belonging to himself, where it was protected, where he could observe and foster it, etc.

Luke 13:20. πάλιν] once more; for the question of Luke 13:18 is repeated.


Verse 21

Luke 13:21. Introduction of a new act in the progress of the journey (Luke 9:57, Luke 10:38, Luke 17:11). The mention of the journey holds the historical thread.

καὶ πορ. ποιούμ.] teaching, and at the same time, etc.


Verse 23

Luke 13:23. This questioner was certainly a confessor of Jesus, Luke 13:24 ff. There is nothing besides this that we can define more precisely, except that the question itself might be called forth by the stringency of the claims of Jesus.

As to εἰ,(162) see on Matthew 12:10.


Verse 24

Luke 13:24. πρὸς αὐτούς] refers to those who were present, of whom the questioner was one. Jesus, giving after His manner a practical application to the theoretical question, answers not directly, but by means of the admonition: Strive to enter in (to the Messiah’s kingdom, to which that question referred, conceived of as a house) by the narrow door, since many in vain shall attempt to enter. Therein is implied: “Instead of concerning yourselves with the question whether they who attain to salvation are only few, reflect rather that many shall not attain it, and set out therefore on the right road to attaining it.”

διὰ τῆς στενῆς θύρας] (see the critical remarks) reminds us of a house which has, besides the usual door, also a distinct small one, and only by means of this is admission possible: so the attainment of salvation is possible only by means of the μετάνοια. The figurative representation, which Jesus has already made use of in the Sermon on the Mount, Matthew 7:13, is here repeated and modified; the simple διὰ τῆς στεν. θύρ., without any more definite explanation (comp., on the other hand, Matt. l.c.), bears the stamp of a reference to something already previously propounded (in opposition to de Wette, Weiss, and others, who are in doubt as to the originality of the saying in this place).

ζητήσουσιν] weaker than ἀγωνίζεσθε.

εἰσελθεῖν] in general; διὰ τῆς στενῆς θύρας is not repeated.

κ. οὐκ ἰσχύσουσιν] because they omit ἀγωνίζεσθαι εἰσελθεῖν διὰ τῆς στενῆς θύρας, i.e. they have not repented.


Verses 25-27

Luke 13:25-27.(163) If you are excluded from the kingdom of Messiah, you shall then in vain urge your external connection with me! πλάττει γὰρ οἰκοδεσπότην τινὰ καθήμενον κ. ὐποδεχόμενον (at the repast, Luke 13:29) τοὺς φίλους αὐτοῦ (rather his family; see subsequently on πόθεν), εἶτα ἐγειρόμενον κ. ἀποκλείοντα τὴν θύραν τοῦ οἴκου αὐτοῦ κ. μὴ συγχωροῦντα τοῖς ἄλλοις εἰσελθεῖν, Euthymius Zigabenus. The construction is such that the apodosis begins with τότε, Luke 13:26 (Bengel, Bornemann), and continues down to ἀδικίας, Luke 13:27, in accordance with which the punctuation should be adjusted. The apodosis does not begin as early as καὶ ἀποκριθείς, Luke 13:25 (the usual mode of punctuation), so that with Luke 13:26 a new sentence would begin; for the former καί, which would not be a sign of the apodosis (de Wette), but would mean also, would be superfluous and confusing, whereas τότε presents itself, according to a usage known to every one (Luke 5:35, Luke 21:20, and elsewhere), of itself, and according to the meaning, as the division of the sentence. It is according to the meaning, for thus the apodosis brings out the principal point, namely, the urging of the relation of external connection and (observe only the continuation of the apodosis through Luke 13:27) its fruitlessness. Lachmann (following Beza) connects ἀφʼ οὖἄνοιξον ἡμῖν (after which he places a full stop) with καὶ οὐκ ἰσχύσουσιν, Luke 13:24. Schegg follows him. But opposed to this is the second person ἄρξησθε, which is not in accordance with ἰσχύσουσιν, but carries forward the address that began with ἀγωνίζεσθε. Ewald conceives the apodosis as beginning as early as καὶ ἄρξησθε, Luke 13:25, but in such a manner that this apodosis is transformed into a second protasis. The harshness of this supposition is increased still more by the fact that if we read ἄρξησθε, Luke 13:26, the force of the protasis must come up anew with the repetition of the sound.(164)

καὶ ἄρξησθε] can only arbitrarily be limited to κρούειν, as though it ran ἄρξ. ἔξω ἑστῶτες κρούειν (Fritzsche, ad Matth. p. 541). It refers to both the infinitives. The people have begun the persistent standing there and knocking, in respect of which they say: Lord, open to us; then the master of the house answers that he knows them not (Matthew 25:12), etc.; next, they begin to say something else, to wit, their ἐφάγομεν κ. τ. λ. Thus there appears in ἄρξησθε and ἄρξεσθε, Luke 13:26, a very vivid representation of their several fruitless attempts.

καὶ ἀποκρ. ἐρεῖ ὑ΄] a graphic transition to the future: after that … ye shall have begun … and he shall say. At the same time, however, it is a departure from the regular construction,(165) as though ἄν had not gone before (Klotz, ad Devar. p. 142).

οὐκ οἶδα ὑμᾶς πόθεν ἐστέ] Comp. John 7:27; Winer, p. 551 [E. T. 781].

πόθεν] i.e. of what family (see on John 7:27); ye are not members of my house, but of another that is unknown to me.

Luke 13:26 f. ἐνώπιόν σου] before thine eyes, as thy guests, but corresponding in a more lively manner to the expression of the master of the house than the mere μετά σου.

ἐν ταῖς πλατ. ἡμ. ἐδίδαξ.] A divergence from the person describing to the person described, which occurs in Luke 13:27 in ἀπόστητε ἀδικίας,(166) and at Luke 13:28 f. Bengel aptly says on Luke 13:27 : “Iterantur eadem verba; stat sententia; sed iterantur cum emphasi.” For the rest, comp. on Matthew 7:22 f. According to the tendency-critics, the doers of iniquity in Matthew must be Pauline-Christians, but in Luke Jewish-Christians; see Hilgenfeld, Krit. Unters. p. 184 f., Evang. p. 196, Zeitschr. 1865, p. 192. What crafty turns the evangelists have got credit for! Antinomians (Weizsäcker) are not meant at all, but immoral adherents.


Verse 28-29

Luke 13:28-29. Comp. on Matthew 8:11 f. The words of Jesus.

ἐκεῖ] there, in the place to which ye shall thus be turned away. For the most part it is understood temporally, ἐν ἐκείνῳ τῷ καιρῷ Euthymius Zigabenus. Rarely thus in the classical writers (Soph. Phil. 394; Bornemann, Schol. p. 90 f.), but never (yet comp. ἐκεῖθεν, Acts 13:21) in the New Testament; and here the context points definitely by ἀπόστητε ἀπʼ ἐμοῦ to the well-known locality, as, moreover, the standing type of this formula sanctioned by use (Matthew 13:42; Matthew 13:50; Matthew 22:13; Matthew 24:51; Matthew 25:30) with ἐκεῖ leads one to think only of that locality.

ὅταν ὄψησθε] What contrasts! They saw the patriarchs and prophets established in the kingdom, but in themselves experience the sense of being cast out, and instead of them come heathens from the east and west, etc. On the subjunctive form ὄψησθε, see Buttmann, Neut. Gr. p. 31 [E. T. 36].

ἀβρ. κ. ἰσ. κ. ἰακώβ] Comp. Matthew 8:11. The Marcionite reading πάντας τοὺς δικαίους is an intentional removal of the patriarchs (Volkmar, comp, Zeller, Apostelg. p. 17). It was not original, so that the canonical reading cannot be said to have been introduced in accordance with Matt. l.c., or in opposition to Marcion’s views (Hilgenfeld, Baur).

ἐκβαλλομ. ἔξω] agrees with the figure, although the persons concerned are not admitted at all; for they are members of the family, and as such, i.e. as originally belonging to the theocratic community of the patriarchs and prophets, they are by their rejection practically ἐκβαλλόμενοι ἔξω. The present tense is justifiable, since the ὁρᾶν κ. τ. λ. at the time of the ἔσται κλαυθμός will be already past. Hence: if ye shall have seen yourselves as such, become (not are) the cast out. After they shall have seen this measure carried out, they shall be in hell, where there shall be weeping, etc.


Verse 30

Luke 13:30. Comp. on Matthew 19:30; Matthew 20:16.

εἰσίν] (before the establishment of the kingdom; ἔσονται) after it, in the kingdom.

ἔσχατοι] i.e. those who have not become believers till very late (as such, born heathens, Luke 13:29);

ἔσονται πρῶτοι] Members of the first rank in the kingdom of Messiah. The originality of this maxim, uttered in several forms and in various connections, is to be claimed exclusively for no particular place.


Verse 31

ff

Luke 13:31 ff. as far as Luke 13:33 peculiar to Luke from the source of his narrative of the journey.

According to Luke 17:11, the incident occurred in Galilee, with which Luke 9:51 ff. (see on the passage) is not inconsistent.

That the Pharisees did not merely give out on pretence their statement in reference to Antipas (Theophylact, Euthymius Zigabenus, Maldonatus, and others, including Olshausen and Ebrard), but actually had instructions from him, because he himself wished to be rid of the dreaded miracle-worker (Luke 9:7; Luke 9:9) out of his dominions, is plain from τῇ ἀλώπεκι ταύτῃ, Luke 13:32, whereby is declared His penetration of the subtle cunning(167) of Herod (not of the Pharisees); in the contrary case, Jesus would have had no ground for characterizing him just as He did, and that too in the consciousness of His higher prophetic and regal dignity. But that Herod used even the enemies of Jesus for this purpose was not unwisely calculated, because he could rely upon them, since they also, on their part, must be glad to see Him removed out of their district, and because the cunning of the Pharisees for the execution of such like purposes was at all events better known to him than were the frequent exposures which they had experienced at the hands of Jesus. On the proverbial ἀλώπηξ, comp. Pind. Pyth. ii. 141; Plat. Pol. ii. p. 365 C and thereupon, Stallbaum; Plut. Sol. 30. Comp. ἀλωπεκίζειν in Aristoph. Vesp. 1241; also κίναδος, Dem. 281. 22, 307. 23; Soph. Aj. 103.


Verse 32

Luke 13:32. ἰδοὺ, ἐκβάλλωτελειοῦμαι] Behold, I cast out demons, and I accomplish cures to-day and to-morrow, and on the third day I come to an end; to wit, not in general with my work, with my course (Acts 20:24), or the like, but, according to the context, with these castings out and cures. A definitely appropriate answer, frank and free, in opposition to timid cunning. To-day and to-morrow I allow myself not to be disturbed in my work here in the land of Herod, but prosecute it without hindrance till the day after to-morrow, when I come to a conclusion with it. Jesus, however, mentions precisely His miraculous working, not His teaching, because He knew that the former, but not the latter, had excited the apprehension of Herod.

τελειοῦμαι] (the present of the certain future, not the Attic future) might be the middle (Jamblichus, Vit. Pyth. 158); but in all the passages of the New Testament, and, as a rule, among the Greek writers, τελειοῦσθαι is passive. So also here; comp. Vulg. It.: consummor. τελειοῦν means ad finem perducere, the passive τελειοῦσθαι ad finem pervenire. Hence: I come to a conclusion, I have done; with what? the context shows, see above. Against the explanation of the end of life, so that the meaning would amount to morior (Theophylact, Euthymius Zigabenus, Beza, Calvin, Grotius, Bengel, Kypke, and many others; comp. also Neander, Baumgarten-Crusius, Schegg, Bisping, Linder in the Stud. u. Krit. 1862, p. 564), are decisive even the statements of the days which, in their definiteness,(168) could not be taken (as even Kuinoel, Ewald, and others will have them) proverbially ( σήμερον κ. αὔρ: per breve tempus, and τῇ τρίτῃ: paulo post; comp. Hosea 6:2), as also πορεύεσθαι, Luke 13:33. Just as little reason is there for seeing prefigured in the three days, the three years of the official ministry of Jesus (Weizsäcker, p. 312).


Verse 33

Luke 13:33. Nevertheless (although I am not, through your advice, disconcerted in that three days’ ministry) the necessity still lies before me, to-day and to-morrow and the next day, to obey your πορεύου ἐντεῦθεν, since it is not allowable that a prophet, etc. Jesus means to say, “Nevertheless it cannot at all be otherwise than that I should conjoin with this work, which is still to be done to-day and to-morrow and the next day, the departure from Galilee, since I shall not perish in Galilee, as Herod threatens, but in order to perish must proceed to Jerusalem, which after all has the monopoly, that a prophet must not be slain out of it.” In the answer, which as looking approaching death in the face at once boldly contemns the threatening of the timid prince, are accordingly involved the three positions—(1) I have undertaken to labour three days more in Galilee, and in that undertaking I will not be disconcerted; (2) nevertheless, I must in these three days contrive my departure from Galilee;(169) and wherefore this? in order to escape the death with which Herod threatens me? No; (3) I must do this because I must not in Galilee—not outside of Jerusalem, but just in that place of the murder of prophets—die; and therefore must make for Jerusalem.(170)

πορεύεσθαι] depart, Luke 13:31. It is not in contradiction with Luke 13:22, for while travelling Jesus was accustomed to cast out demons, and to perform cures. If He wished to do the latter, He could at the same time do the former. Most of the commentators (even Grotius, Kuinoel, Olshausen) are grammatically and contextually wrong (see Luke 13:31) in the explanation: travel about undisturbed in my occupations. When others, following Syr., limit πορεύεσθαι merely to τῇ ἐχο΄ένῃ, interpreting it either as to depart (Theophylact, Casaubon) or to die (Euthymius Zigabenus, Elsner), they supply (comp. also Neander) after αὔριον a thought such as ἐργάζεσθαι or ἐνεργῆσαι εἶπον. This is indeed to make the impossible possible!

οὐκ ἐνδέχεται] it cannot be done, it is not possible (2 Maccabees 11:18, and see Stallbaum, ad Plat. Rep. vi. p. 501 C), with ironically excited emotion makes the frequent and usual hyperbolically to appear as necessary (for all the prophets were not actually slain in Jerusalem, as is shown even in the instance of the Baptist) for the purpose of showing how empty the threatening of Herod appears to Jesus, since He must rather go to Jerusalem to die. The opinion (Grotius, Drusius, Knatchbull, Lightfoot, Wolf, and others) that He refers to the right belonging exclusively to the Sanhedrim of judging prophets and condemning them to death (Sanhedr. f. 2. 1, f. 89. 1, and elsewhere) is mistaken, since the matter here in question is of the actual ἀπολέσθαι, and since Jesus could not place Himself on a level with those who were condemned as false prophets. Comp. Winer in Zimmerman’s Monatsschr. II. 3, p. 206.


Verse 34-35

Luke 13:34-35. See on Matthew 23:37 ff. The original place of this exclamation is in Matthew (in opposition to Olshausen, Wieseler, Holtzmann, and others), although the connection in which Luke gives it from his source of the journey is not to be called inappropriate (in opposition to Schleiermacher, de Wette, Bleek). The painful reminder and announcement appears on the part of Jesus natural enough after Luke 13:33, and in the face of the theocratic hypocrites, Luke 13:35 is a striking dismissal.

τὴν ἑαυτῆς νοσσιάν] her own nest, namely, with the chickens therein, her own brood. Comp. Plat. Pol. viii. p. 548 A Herod. iii. 111, often in the LXX. As to the testimony of the passage before us to an already frequent ministry of Jesus in Jerusalem, see on Matthew 23:38 f., Remark. Comp. Weizsäcker, p. 310. But Schenkel, in opposition to all the evangelical notices, conjectures that during His supposed single sojourn in Judea (where He now is) He was oftener in Jerusalem. According to Keim (D. geschichtl. Chr. p. 34), Luke must at least have understood all the Jews as the children of Jerusalem, which, however, according to the context (Luke 13:33; Luke 13:35), is not correct. In Luke the apostrophe refers to the remote inhabitants of the central seat of the theocracy.

Luke 13:35. Continued apostrophe to the inhabitants of Jerusalem.

λέγω δὲ ὑμῖν κ. τ. λ.] cannot refer to the festal procession that was close at hand (Erasmus, Er. Schmid, Stein; Paulus, according to whom the meaning must be, “before the festival caravans I shall not come!”(171)), which would yield the most nugatory and inappropriate thought in a pompous form, as the conclusion of a solemn denunciation of threatening. It refers to the Parousia (see already Theophylact), and the train of thought is: “The divine protection departs from your city ( ἀφίεται ὑμῖν οἶκ. ὑμ., see on Matthew 23:38), and in this abandonment I shall not appear to you as a helper,—ye shall not see me until I come to the establishment of my kingdom, and shall receive your (then no further to be withheld) homage as the Messiah.” The meaning is somewhat different from what it is in Matthew. Observe, namely—(1) that Luke has not the ἀπάρτι of Matthew (and, moreover, could not have it, since he has the saying before the festal entry); (2) that, therefore, in Luke the time of the οὐ μή με ἴδητε must be the duration of the previously declared abandonment; (3) that instead of λέγω γάρ (Matt.) Luke places λέγω δέ, which δέ is not to be taken as explanatory, in the sense of γάρ (because it is not followed by ἀπάρτι as in Matthew), but as in continuation, autem, as an advance towards a new point in the announcement: “Ye shall be abandoned, but how long? abandoned even till my Parousia.” Comp. the expression ζητήσετέ με κ. οὐχ εὑρήσετε in John 7:34 : the restoration of Israel, so that by ἕως κ. τ. λ. would be meant the conversion of the people (Hofmann, Schriftb. II. 2, p. 90 ff.), is neither here nor elsewhere taught in the New Testament.

ἕως ἥξει (see the critical remarks) ὅτε εἴπητε] till it (the point of time) shall be, when ye shall have said. The subjunctive after ὅτε without ἄν: “si res non ad cogitationem refertur et eventus tantummodo spectatur,” Klotz, ad Devar. p. 688. See on this specially Homeric use, even Thiersch in the Act. Monac. I. p. 13 ff.; Bernhardy, p. 397 f., 400. In this place to consider the subjunctive as occasioned by ἕως (Buttmann, Neut. Gr. p. 199 [E. T. 231 f.]) is arbitrary.

 


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Bibliography Information
Meyer, Heinrich. "Commentary on Luke 13:4". Heinrich Meyer's Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hmc/luke-13.html. 1832.

Lectionary Calendar
Sunday, September 15th, 2019
the Week of Proper 19 / Ordinary 24
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