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Bible Commentaries

Vincent's Word Studies
Luke 10



Other Authors
Verse 1

Appointed ( ἀνέδειξεν )

Used by Luke only. Lit., to lift up and shew, as Acts 1:24: “Shew which one thou hast chosen.” Hence to proclaim any one elected to an office. See on the kindred noun, shewing, Luke 1:80.

Other seventy

Wrong; for he had not appointed seventy previously. Rev., rightly, seventy others, with reference to the twelve.

Verse 2

The harvest ( θερισμὸς )

From θέρος , summer (compare θέρομαι , to become warm)Harvest, that which is gathered in summer. Wyc., much ripe corn is, but few workmen.


See on Luke 8:38.

Send forth ( ἐκβάλῃ )

Lit., drive or thrust forth, implying the urgency of the mission. See on Mark 1:12.

Verse 3

I send forth ( ἀποστέλλω )

See on Matthew 10:2.

Verse 4

Purse ( βαλλάντιον )

Used by Luke only. For money.

Scrip ( πήραν )

For victuals. Rev., wallet.


Not that they were to go unshod, but that they were not to carry a change of sandals. See Deuteronomy 29:5; Deuteronomy 33:25.

Salute no man

Oriental salutations are tedious and complicated. The command is suited to a rapid and temporary mission. Compare 2 Kings 4:29. “These instructions were also intended to reprove another propensity which an Oriental can hardly resist, no matter how urgent his business. If he meets an acquaintance, he must stop and make an endless number of inquiries, and answer as many. If they come upon men making a bargain, or discussing any other matter, they must pause and intrude their own ideas, and enter keenly into the business, though it in nowise concerns them; and, more especially, an Oriental can never resist the temptation to assist when accounts are being settled or money counted out. The clink of coin has a positive fascination to them” (Thomson, “Land and Book”).

Verse 5

Peace to this house

The usual oriental salutation. See Judges 19:20.

Verse 6

If a son of peace be there

So Rev. A Hebraism, referring to the character of the head of the house, and the tone of the household. Compare Job 21:9.

Verse 7

The workman is worthy, etc

See on Matthew 10:10.

Verse 11

Dust ( κονιορτὸν )

From κόνις , dust, and ὄρνυμι ,to stir up. Strictly, dust that is raised by walking.


See on Matthew 19:5. Frequent in medical language of the uniting of wounds.

Wipe off ( ἀπομάσσομεθα )

See on Luke 5:2. Only here in New Testament.

Verse 13

Mighty works

See on Matthew 11:20.

Sackcloth ( σάκκῳ )

From the Hebrew sakwhat is knotted together; net-shaped; coarsely woven. It was made of goats' or camels' hair (Revelation 6:12), and was a material similar to that upon which Paul wrought in tent-making. The same word in Hebrew is used to describe a grain-sack, and this coarse material of which it is made (Genesis 42:25; Joshua 9:4). So the Greek σαγή means a pack or baggage. The same root, according to some etymologists, appears in σαγήνη , a drag-net (see Matthew 13:47), and σάγος , Latin sagum, a coarse, soldier's cloak. It was employed for the rough garments for mourners (Esther 4:1; 1 Kings 21:27), in which latter passage the sackcloth is put next the flesh in token of extreme sorrow. Compare 2 Kings 6:30; Job 16:15.

Ashes ( σποδῷ )

As a sign of mourning. Defiling one's self with dead things, as ashes or dirt, as a sign of sorrow, was common among the Orientals and Greeks. Thus Homer describes Achilles on hearing of the death of Patroclus:

“Grasping in both hands

The ashes of the hearth, he showered them o'er

His head, and soiled with them his noble face.”

Iliad, xviii., 28.

And Priam, mourning for Hector:

“In the midst the aged man

Sat with a cloak wrapped round him, and much dust

Strewn on his head and neck, which, when he rolled

Upon the earth, he gathered with his hands.”

Iliad, xxiv., 162-5.

See 1 Samuel 4:12; 2 Samuel 1:2; 2 Samuel 13:19; Job 2:12; Revelation 18:19. In Judith 4:14,15, in the mourning over the ravages of the Assyrians, the priests minister at the altar, girded with sackcloth, and with ashes on their mitres. Sir Gardner Wilkinson, describing a funeral at Thebes, says: “Men, women, and children, with the body exposed above the waist, throw dust on their heads, or cover their faces with mud” (“Modern Egypt and Thebes”). Stifling with ashes was a Persian mode of punishment. Compare Apocrypha, 2 Maccabees 13:5-7. Herodotus relates that Nitocris, an Egyptian queen, after having drowned the murderers of her brother, threw herself into an apartment full of ashes, in order to escape the vengeance of their friends.

Verse 14

But ( πλὴν )

Rev., howbeit. See on Matthew 11:22.

Verse 15

Which art exalted to heaven

For ἡ , the article, rendered which, the best texts give μὴ , the interrogative particle; and for the participle having been exalted, the future shalt be exalted. Render, as Rev., Shalt thou be exalted, etc.


Rev., Hades. See on Matthew 16:18.

Verse 16

Despiseth ( ἀθετεῖ )

See on Luke 7:30, and compare Galatians 2:21; Galatians 3:15.

Verse 17

The seventy

“The fuller development of the new dispensation begins with the mission of the seventy, and not with the mission of the apostles. Its ground-work, from Luke's point of sight, is the symbolic evangelization of every nation upon earth, and not the restoration of the twelve tribes of Israel. According to Jewish tradition, there were seventy or seventy-two different nations and tongues in the world. In Luke 10:1, some read seventy-two instead of seventy (Westcott, “Int. to the Study of the Gospels”).

Verse 18

I beheld ( ἐθεώρουν )

The verb denotes calm, intent, continuous contemplation of an object which remains before the spectator. So John 1:14, we beheld, implying that Jesus' stay upon earth, though brief, was such that his followers could calmly and leisurely contemplate his glory. Compare John 2:23:” they beheld his miracles,” thoughtfully and attentively. Here it denotes the rapt contemplation of a vision. The imperfect, was beholding, refers either to the time when the seventy were sent forth, or to the time of the triumphs which they are here relating. “While you were expelling the sub -ordinates, I was beholding the Master fall” (Godet). The Revisers do not seem to have had any settled principle in their rendering of this word throughout the New Testament. See my article on the Revised New Testament, Presbyterian Revi ew, October, 1881, p. 646 sq.


A transcription of the Hebrew word, derived from a verb to lie in wait or oppose. Hence an adversary. In this sense, of David, 1 Samuel 29:4, and of the angel who met Balaam, Numbers 22:22. Compare Zechariah 3:1, Zechariah 3:2; Job 2:1-13. Διάβλος , devil, is the more common term in the New Testament. In Revelation 12:9, both terms are applied to him.

As lightning

Describing vividly a dazzling brilliance suddenly quenched.

Fall ( πεσόντα )

Lit., having fallen. The aorist marks the instantaneous fall, like lightning.

Verse 21

The best texts omit Jesus.


See on 1 Peter 1:6.

In spirit

The best texts add τῷ ἁγίῳ , the holy, and render in the Holy Spirit.

I thank

See on Matthew 11:25. From this point to Luke 10:25, compare Matthew 11:25-27, and Matthew 13:16, Matthew 13:17.


See on Matthew 11:25.

Verse 22

Are delivered ( παρεδόθη )

See on Matthew 11:27.

Verse 25


See on Luke 7:30.


See on temptation, Matthew 6:13.

To inherit

See on inheritance, 1 Peter 1:4.

Eternal ( εἰώνιον )

The word will be fully discussed in the second volume.

Verse 26


See on Luke 4:16.

Verse 27

Thou shalt love, etc

See on Mark 12:30. Luke addsstrength.


Verse 29

Willing ( θέλων )

Rev., desiring. See on Matthew 1:19. I think this is stronger than desiring; rather, determined.

Neighbor ( πλησίον )

See on Matthew 5:43.

Verse 30

Answering ( ὑπολαβὼν )

Used by Luke only, and in this sense only here. See on Luke 7:43. It means, strictly, to take up; and hence, of conversation, to take up another's discourse and reply.

Fell among

See on James 1:2.

Thieves ( λῃσταῖς )

See on Matthew 26:55; and Luke 23:39-43. These were not petty stealers, but men of violence, as was shown by their treatment of the traveller. The road from Jerusalem to Jericho passed through a wilderness (Joshua 16:1), which was so notorious for robberies and murders that a portion of it was called “the red or bloody way,” and was protected by a fort and a Roman garrison.


Not of his clothing only, but of all that he had.

Wounded ( πληγὰς ἐπιθέντες )

Lit., having laid on blows. Blows or stripes is the usual sense of the word in the New Testament. See Luke 12:48; Acts 16:23. It has the metaphorical sense of plagues in Revelation 15:1, Revelation 15:6, Revelation 15:8, etc.

Half dead ( ἡμιθανῆ τυγχάνοντα )

The full force of the expression cannot be rendered into English. The word τυγχάνοντα throws an element of chance into the ease. Lit., happening to be half dead; or “leaving him half dead, as it chanced; his condition being a matter of unconcern to these robbers. The word ἡμιθανῆ ,half dead, occurs nowhere else in the New Testament. The best texts, however, omit τυγχάνοντα .

Verse 31

By chance ( κατὰ συγκυρίαν )

Only here in New Testament. The word means, literally, a coincidence. By coincidence of circumstances.

There came down

Imperfect, was going down, as Rev.


The Talmudists said that there were almost as many priests at Jericho as at Jerusalem.

Passed by on the other side ( ἀντιπαρῆλθεν )

The verb occurs only here and Luke 10:32.

Verse 32

Came and looked

Rev., saw. Seeming to imply that the Levite went farther than the priest in coming near to the wounded man, and, having observed his condition, passed on.

Verse 33

Came where he was

There is a strong contrast with the other cases, and a downright heartiness in the words, κατ ' αὐτὸν , down to him. The Levite had come κατὰ τόπον , “down to the place.”

Verse 34

Bound up ( κατέδησεν )

Only here in New Testament.

Wounds ( τραύματα )

Only here in New Testament.

Pouring in ( ἐπιχέων )

Rather upon ( ἐπί ), as Rev. Wine to cleanse, and oil to soothe. See Isaiah 1:6.

Oil and wine

Usual remedies for sores, wounds, etc. Hippocrates prescribes for ulcers, “Bind with soft wool, and sprinkle with wine and oil.”

Beast ( κτῆνος )

Perhaps akin to κτῆμα , a possession; since animals anciently constituted wealth, so that a piece of property and a beast were synonymous terms.

Inn ( πανδοχεῖον )

Only here in New Testament. From πᾶν , all, and δέχομαι , to receive:a place of common reception. See on inn, Luke 2:7. Remains of two khans, or inns, on the road between Jericho and Jerusalem are mentioned by modern travellers. Porter (“Handbook of Syria and Palestine”) speaks of one about a mile from Bethany, and another farther on, at the most dangerous part of the road, an extensive, ruined caravanserai, called Khan el Almah, situated on the top of a bleak ridge. Concerning the former, Hepworth Dixon (“Holy Land”) says: “About midway in the descent from Bethany to Jericho, in a position commanding a view of the road above and below, … on the very spot where search would be made for them, if no such ruins were suspected of existing, stands a pile of stones, archways, lengths of wall, which the wandering Arabs call Khan Houdjar, and still make use of as their own resting-place for the night. These ruins are those of a noble inn; the lewan, the fountain, and the court, being plainly traceable in the ruins.”

Verse 35

Two pence

About thirty-five cents. See on Matthew 20:2.

I will repay

TheI is expressed ( ἐγὼ ), and is emphatic. Trouble him not for the reckoning; I will repay.

Verse 36

Was neighbor ( πλησίον γεγονέναι )

More correctly, has become neighbor. Jesus throws himself back to the time of the story. So Rev., proved neighbor. “The neighbor Jews became strangers. The stranger Samaritan became neighbor to the wounded traveller” (Alford).

Verse 37

He that shewed mercy on him. ( μετά )

Rather with him: ( μετά ): dealt with him as with a brother. The lawyer avoids the hated word Samaritan.


Verse 38

Received ( ὑπεδέξατο )

From ὕπο , under, and δέχομαι , to receive. Received him under her roof. Martha is marked as the head of the household. It was her house. She received the guest, and was chiefly busy with the preparations for his entertainment (Luke 10:40).

Verse 39

Sat ( παρακαθέσθεισα )

Only here in New Testament. Lit., sat beside ( παρά )i1.

Verse 40

Was cumbered ( περιεσπᾶτο )

Only here in New Testament. The Rev. might better have inserted in the text the marginal rendering, woe distracted. The verb means, literally, to draw from around ( περί ). Martha's attention, instead of centring round Jesus, was drawn hither and thither. The περί , around, in composition with the verb, is followed immediately by another περί , “about much serving.”

Came to him ( ἐπιστᾶσα )

Came up to him, as Rev., suddenly stopping in her hurry.

Hath left ( κατέλιπεν )

The aorist, as Rev., did leave, indicating that she had been assisting before she was drawn off by Jesus' presence. Some read κατέλειπεν the imperfect, was leaving.

Help ( συναντιλάβηται )

The verb consists of three elements: λαμβάνω ,to take hold; σύν ,together with; ἀντι , reciprocally - doing her part as Martha does hers. It might be paraphrased, therefore, take hold and do her part along with me. It occurs only here and Romans 8:26, of the Spirit helping our infirmities, where all the elements of the verb are strikingly exemplified.

Verse 41

Thou art anxious ( μεριμνᾷς )

See on Matthew 6:25.

Troubled ( θορυβάζῃ )

From θόρυβος , tumult. Anxious denotes the inward uneasiness: troubled, the outward confusion and bustle.


Copyright Statement
The text of this work is public domain.

Bibliography Information
Vincent, Marvin R. DD. "Commentary on Luke 10:4". "Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament". Charles Schribner's Sons. New York, USA. 1887.

Lectionary Calendar
Friday, November 27th, 2020
the Week of Christ the King / Proper 29 / Ordinary 34
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