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Bible Commentaries

Vincent's Word Studies
Luke 24



Verse 1

Very early in the morning ( ὄρθρου βαθέως )

Lit., at deep dawn, or the dawn being deep. It is not uncommon in Greek to find βαθύς , deep, used of time; as deep or late evening. Plutarch says of Alexander, that he supped “at deep evening; i.e., late at night. Philo says that the Hebrews crossed the Red Sea “about deep dawn (as here), while others were yet in bed.” So Socrates, in prison, asks Crito the time of day. He replies, ὄρθρος βαθύς ,the dawn is deep, i.e. breaking (Plato, “Crito,” 43).


Verse 4

Shining ( ἀστραπτούσαις )

Only here and Luke 17:24, Akin to ἀστράπη , lightning. See on bright shining, Luke 11:36 and compare Luke 17:24.

Verse 11

To them ( ἐνώπιον αὐτῶν )

Rev., literally, in their sight

Idle tales ( λῆρος )

Lit., silly talk; nonsense. Only here in New Testament. Used in medical language of the wild talk of delirium. Wyc., madness. Tynd., feigned things.

Verse 12

Stooping down

See on looketh, James 1:25. The best texts omit this verse.


Not garments, but the linen bandages in which the body had been rolled. So Rev., cloths.

Verse 13

Threescore furlongs

Seven miles.

Verse 15

Went with ( συνεπορεύετο )

The use of the imperfect here is very beautiful. Jesus drew near while they were absorbed in their talk, and was already walking with them when they observed him.

Verse 17

Ye have ( ἀντιβάλλετε )

Lit., throw back and forth; exchange.

“Discussed a doubt and tossed it to and fro” (Tennyson).

And are sad ( σκυθρωποί )

Only here and Matthew 6:16, on which see note. The best texts put the interrogation point after walk, add καὶ ἐστάθησαν , and render, and they stood still, looking sad. So Rev.

Verse 18

Art thou only a stranger in Jerusalem ( σὺ μόνος παροικεῖς Ἰερουσαλὴμ )

Παροικεῖν , to dwell as a stranger, is used in later Greek of strangers who have no rights of citizenship, and no settled home. Compare Hebrews 11:9. See on strangers, 1 Peter 1:1; and compare sojourning, 1 Peter 1:17. The only of the A. V. is commonly understood adverbially: “Are you nothing but a stranger?” But the emphasis of the question falls there, and the word is an adjective. Render “Dost thou alone dwell as a stranger in Jerusalem?” Are you the only one who sojourns as a stranger in Jerusalem, and who does not know, etc. So, nearly, Wyc., Thou alone art a pilgrim in Jerusalem.

Verse 19

What things ( ποῖα )

Lit., “what kind of things.”

Verse 21

Trusted ( ἠλπίζομεν )

More correctly, hoped. Imperfect: were hoping all the while.

Should have redeemed

Rev., more correctly, should redeem ( λυτροῦσθαι ). See on 1 Peter 1:18.

Beside all this ( σὺν πᾶσιν τούτοις )

Lit., with all these things: his betrayal and crucifixion, etc.

To-day is the third day ( τρίτην ταύτην ἡμέραν ἄγει σήμερον )

The best texts omit to-day. The phrase forms an idiom which cannot be neatly rendered. Literally it is, “He (Christ) is passing ( ἄγει ) this day as the third.” Rev., It is now the third day since, etc.

Verse 22

Made us astonished ( ἐξέστησαν )

Literally the verb means to put out of place; and so, to drive one out of his senses. Hence the A. V. is feeble. Rev., better, amazed us.

Early ( ὀρθριναὶ )

Lit., early ones. Only here and Revelation 22:16. Compare ὄρθρος , dawn, Luke 24:1.

Verse 23

That they had seen - which said

Cleopas, absorbed in his story, throws himself back to the time of his interview with the women. Lit., “They came saying that they have seen a vision of angels which say ( λέγουσιν )i1.

Verse 25

Fools and slow of heart ( ἀνόητοι καὶ βραδεῖς τῇ καρδίᾳ )

This is an unfortunate translation, in the light of the ordinary, popular use of the word fool. Jesus would never have called those sorrowful disciplesfools in that sense. The word is compounded of ἀ , not, and νοέω , which implies, besides seeing, perception of the mind as consequent upon sight. It is therefore equivalent to dull of perception. They had read what the prophets had spoken, but had failed to perceive its application to Christ. While this rebuke relates to the understanding, the following one, slow of heart, goes deeper, and contemplates the region of feeling and moral susceptibility. Your heart is dull and slow to respond to these testimonies of your own prophets. Compare hardiness of heart, Mark 16:14.

All ( ἐπὶ πᾶσιν )

Rev., rightly, in all; relying upon ( ἐπί ) all the utterances of the prophets.

Verse 26

Ought not ( οὐχὶ ἔδει )

The A. V. does not convey the precise meaning, which is, that, in the eternal order of things, and in fulfilment of the eternal counsel of God as expressed in the prophecies, it was essentially fitting that Christ should suffer. Rev. is clumsy but correct: behoved it not the Christ to suffer?

Verse 27

He expounded ( διερμήνυεν )

Or interpreted: throughout ( διά ). Imperfect, he went on interpreting from passage to passage.

Verse 28

They went ( ἐπορεύοντο )

Imperfect, were going. So Rev,

Made as though ( προσεποιήσατο )

The verb means originally to add or attach to; hence to take to one's self what does not belong to him; and so, to pretend; though pretending as implying anything false, does not attach to this act of Jesus. He was going on, and would have gone on but for their invitation. Only here in New Testament.

Verse 29

They constrained ( παρεβιάσαντο )

Contrary to ( παρά ) his apparent intention of going on. Only here and Acts 16:15.

Is far spent ( κέκλικεν )

Lit., has declined. Wyc., is now bowed down.

Verse 30

And gave ( ἐπεδίδου )

A very beautiful use of the imperfect, indicating that while he was in the act of distributing they recognized him. He blessed, and having broken, was giving it to them, when, in an instant, their eyes were opened (aorist tense).

Verse 31

They knew ( ἐπέγνωσαν )

Clearly recognized.

And he vanished out of their sight ( αὐτὸς ἄφαντος ἐγένετο ἀπ ' αὐτῶν )

Lit., he, invisible, became away from them. It is not simply, he suddenly departed from them, but he passed away from them invisibly. The ἐγένετο , became, is construed with ἀπ ' αὐτῶν , from them.

Verse 32

Did not our heart burn - while he talked - opened. ( οὐχὶ ἡ καρδία ἡμῶν καιομένη ἦν - ὡς ἐλάλει - διήνοιγεν )

The A. V., as usual, pays no attention to the graphic imperfects here. They are speaking of something which was in progress: “was not our heart burning (finite verb and participle) while he was speaking, and was opening the scriptures?”

Verse 34

Is risen ( ἠγέρθη ) - appeared ( ὤφθη )

Both aorists. The Lord rose and appeared. So Wyc. See on appeared, Luke 22:43.

Verse 35

They told ( ἐξηγοῦντο )

Rev., rehearsed is better, because the verb means to tell at length or relate in full.

Verse 36

Jesus himself

The best texts omit Jesus. Render as Rev., “he himself stood.”

And saith unto them, Peace be unto you

The best texts omit.

Verse 38

Thoughts ( διαλογισμοὶ )

See on James 2:4, and deceiving, James 1:22. Rev., reasonings. As if he had said, “Why do you reason about a matter which your spiritual perception ought to discern at once.” Compare note on fools, Luke 24:25.

Verse 39

Handle ( ψηλαφήσατε )

Compare 1 John 1:1. The word occurs also Acts 17:27; Hebrews 12:18. “It never expresses the so handling an object as to exercise a moulding, modifying influence upon it, but at most a feeling of its surface; this, it may be, with the intention of learning its composition (Genesis 27:12, Genesis 27:21, Genesis 27:22); while, not seldom, it signifies no more than a feeling for or after an object, without any actual coming in contact with it at all” (Trench, “Synonyms”). Compare Acts 17:27. Used of groping in the dark, Job 5:14:; of the blind, Isaiah 59:10; Deuteronomy 28:29; Judges, Judges 16:26. See on Hebrews 12:18.

Verse 41

Meat ( βρώσιμον )

Only here in New Testament. Lit.,anything eatable. Wyc., anything that shall be eaten. Rev., better, anything to eat, as the word meat has largely lost, in popular usage, its old sense of food in general.

Verse 42


Only here in New Testament.

Of an honey-comb

The best texts omit.

Verse 44

The words

The best texts insert my.

Must ( δεῖ )

See on ought not, Luke 24:26.

Verse 45

Understanding ( νοῦν )

Which had been closed. See onfools, Luke 24:25.

Verse 46

Thus it behoved

The best texts omit. Render, as Rev., thus it is written that the Christ should suffer.

Christ ( τὸν Χριστὸν )

Note the article, the Christ, and see on Matthew 1:1.

Verse 47

Should be preached

See on preacher, 2 Peter 2:5.

In his name

On the foundation of ( ἐπἵ ) See on Matthew 24:5.


See on Luke 3:3; and on forgiven, James 5:15.

Beginning from Jerusalem

Some editors place a period after nations, and join these words with the next sentence, omitting and: “beginning from Jerusalem ye are witnesses.”

Verse 49

I send ( ἐγὼ ἐξαποστέλλω )

Rev., better, send forth, giving the force of ἐξ . I emphatic.

Endued with power

The Rev. has properly substituted the simpler clothed, which, to the English reader, conveys the exact figure in the word. This metaphorical sense of clothed is found in classical Greek. Aristophanes has clothed with audacity; Homer, clothed with strength; Plutarch, clothed with nobility and wealth.

Verse 51

And was carried up into heaven

Some texts omit.


Copyright Statement
The text of this work is public domain.

Bibliography Information
Vincent, Marvin R. DD. "Commentary on Luke 24:4". "Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament". Charles Schribner's Sons. New York, USA. 1887.

Lectionary Calendar
Monday, October 19th, 2020
the Week of Proper 24 / Ordinary 29
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