Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Luke 13:32

And He said to them, "Go and tell that fox, ‘Behold, I cast out demons and perform cures today and tomorrow, and the third day I reach My goal.'
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Fox;   Herod;   Jesus, the Christ;   Jesus Continued;   Rulers;   Scofield Reference Index - Parables;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Devil, the;   Fox, the;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Fox;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Demons;   Ruler;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Antipas;   Fox;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Herod;   Jonah;   Tiberias;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Christ, Christology;   Luke, Gospel of;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Fox;   Herod;   Judging;   Matthew, Gospel According to;   Possession;   Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament - Animals;   Dates (2);   Death of Christ;   Demon, Demoniacal Possession, Demoniacs;   Dependence;   Discipline;   Discipline (2);   Disease;   Fierceness;   Foresight;   Fox ;   Immortality;   Lord's Supper. (I.);   Love (2);   Ministry;   Nation (2);   Numbers (2);   Obscurity;   Palestine;   Physician (2);   Political Conditions;   Scorn;   Self-Control;   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Fox;   Numbers as Symbols;   Perfect;   The Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary - Foxes;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Chief parables and miracles in the bible;   Fox;   Wilson's Dictionary of Bible Types - Perfect;   Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary - Fox;  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Cure;   Demon;   Fox;   Jesus Christ (Part 2 of 2);   Jesus Christ, the Arrest and Trial of;   Perfect;   Sanctification;   The Jewish Encyclopedia - Exorcism;   New Testament;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

Tell that fox - Herod was a very vicious prince, and lived in public incest with his sister-in-law, Mark 6:17; : if our Lord meant him here, it is hard to say why the character of fox, which implies cunning, design, and artifice, to hide evil intentions, should be attributed to him, who never seemed studious to conceal his vices. But we may suppose that Christ, who knew his heart, saw that he covered his desire for the destruction of our Lord, under the pretense of zeal for the law and welfare of the Jewish people. A fox among the Jews appears to have been the emblem of a wicked ruler, who united cunning with cruelty, and was always plotting how he might aggrandize himself by spoiling the people. See a quotation in Schoettgen.

The following observation from the judicious Bishop Pearce deserves attention. "It is not certain," says he, "that Jesus meant Herod here; he might only have intended to call that man so, from whom the advice of departing came, (whether from the speaker himself, or the person who sent him), for it is probable, that the advice was given craftily, and with design to frighten Jesus, and, make him go from that place."

To-day and to-morrow - I am to work miracles for two days more, and on the third day I shall be put to death. But it is probable that this phrase only means, that he had but a short time to live, without specifying its duration.

Perfected - Or finished, τελειουμαι . I shall then have accomplished the purpose for which I came into the world, leaving nothing undone which the counsel of God designed me to complete. Hence, in reference to our Lord, the word implies his dying; as the plan of human redemption was not finished, till he bowed his head and gave up the ghost on the cross: see John 19:30, where the same word is used. It is used also in reference to Christ's death, Hebrews 2:10; Hebrews 5:9; see also Acts 20:24, and Hebrews 12:23. The word finish, etc., is used in the same sense both by the Greeks and Latins. See Kypke.

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Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/luke-13.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

Tell that fox - A fox is an emblem of slyness, of cunning, and of artful mischief. The word is also used to denote a dissembler. Herod was a wicked man, but the “particular thing” to which Jesus here alludes is not his “vices,” but his “cunning, his artifice,” in endeavoring to remove him out of his territory. He had endeavored to do it by stratagem - by sending these people who pretended great friendship for his life.

Behold, I cast out devils … - Announce to him the fact that I am working miracles in his territory, and that I shall continue to do it. I am not afraid of his art or his enmity. I am engaged in my appropriate work, and shall continue to be as long as is proper, in spite of his arts and his threats.

Today and tomorrow - A little time. The words seem here to be used not strictly, but proverbially - to denote a short space of time. Let not Herod be uneasy. I am doing no evil; I am not violating the laws. I only cure the sick, etc. In a little time this part of my work will be done, and I shall retire from his dominions.

The third day - After a little time. Perhaps, however, he meant “literally” that he would depart on that day for Jerusalem; that for two or three days more he would remain in the villages of Galilee, and then go on his way to Jerusalem.

I shall be perfected - Rather, I shall have ended my course “here;” I shall have “perfected” what I purpose to do in Galilee. It does not refer to his “personal” perfection, for he was always perfect, but it means that he would have “finished or completed” what he purposed to do in the regions of Herod. He would have completed his work, and would be ready then to go.

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Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/luke-13.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

And he said unto them, go ye and tell that fox,.... Herod, who it may be sent them, of which Christ was not ignorant, nor of his design in it; and who, as Nero, for his cruelty, is compared to a lion, so he for his subtlety in this instance, as well as in the whole of his conduct, to a fox; though some think Christ has a regard to the Pharisees, and their craftiness, in forming this story, pretending good will to him, by acquainting him of Herod's malicious designs, when their view was only to scare him out of their country; so the false prophets and teachers, are for their cunning, subtlety, and flattery, compared to foxes, Song of Solomon 2:15 as well as for their greediness and voraciousness: the word is used with the Jews, for a vain and empty man, in opposition to a good man; as in that sayingF4Pirke Abot, c. 4. sect. 15. & Jarchi in ib. of R. Jannai,

"be thou the tail of lions, and not the head of "foxes;"'

or "vain men", as the gloss explains it:

behold, I cast out devils; or "I will cast out devils", as the Ethiopic version reads, in spite of him, let him do his worst:

and I do cures today and tomorrow; and so for some time to come; and which was doing good, and was what Herod and the Pharisees, had they any humanity in them, would have rejoiced at, and have chose that he should have continued with them, and not have threatened him with his life, or have took any methods to send him from them:

and the third day I shall be perfected; that is, in a little time after, I shall be made perfect by sufferings, my course will be finished, and I shall have done all the work completely, I came about; and till that time come, it is not in his power, nor yours, nor all the men on earth, or devils in hell, to take away my life, or hinder me doing what I am about.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855
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Gill, John. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/luke-13.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

And he said unto them, Go ye, and tell that h fox, Behold, I cast out devils, and I do cures i to day and to morrow, and the third [day] I shall be k perfected.

(h) That deceitful and treacherous man.

(i) That is, a small time, and Theophylact says it is a proverb: or else by "to day" we may understand the present time, and by tomorrow the time to come, meaning by this the entire time of his ministry and office.

(k) That is, when the sacrifice for sin is finished.

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Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/luke-13.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

that fox — that crafty, cruel enemy of God‘s innocent servants.

Behold, I cast out devils and I do cures — that is, “Plot on and ply thy wiles; I also have My plans; My works of mercy are nearing completion, but some yet remain; I have work for to-day and to-morrow too, and the third day; by that time I shall be where his jurisdiction reaches not; the guilt of My blood shall not lie at his door; that dark deed is reserved for others.” He does not say, I preach the Gospel - that would have made little impression upon Herod - in the light of the merciful character of Christ‘s actions the malice of Herod‘s snares is laid bare [Bengel].

to-day, to-morrow, the third day — remarkable language expressive of successive steps of His work yet remaining, the calm deliberateness with which He meant to go through with them, one after another, to the last, unmoved by Herod‘s threat, yet the rapid march with which they were now hastening to completion. (Compare Luke 22:37).

I shall be perfected — I finish my course, I attain completion.

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These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.
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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/luke-13.html. 1871-8.

John Lightfoot's Commentary on the Gospels

32. And he said unto them, Go ye, and tell that fox, Behold, I cast out devils, and I do cures today and tomorrow, and the third day I shall be perfected.

[Tell that fox.] I conceive our Saviour may allude here to the common proverb: "The brethren of Joseph fell down before his face and worshipped him, saith R. Benjamin Bar Japheth. Saith R. Eliezer This is what is commonly said amongst men, Worship the fox in his time." The Gloss is, 'In the time of his prosperity.' But go you, and say to that fox, however he may wallow in his present prosperity, that I will never flatter him, or for any fear of him desist from my work; but "behold, I cast out devils," &c.

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Lightfoot, John. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "John Lightfoot Commentary on the Gospels". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jlc/luke-13.html. 1675.

Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament

That fox (τηι αλωπεκι ταυτηιtēi alōpeki tautēi). This epithet for the cunning and cowardice of Herod shows clearly that Jesus understood the real attitude and character of the man who had put John the Baptist to death and evidently wanted to get Jesus into his power in spite of his superstitious fears that he might be John the Baptist redivivus. The message of Jesus means that he is independent of the plots and schemes of both Herod and the Pharisees. The preacher is often put in a tight place by politicians who are quite willing to see him shorn of all real power.

Cures (ιασειςiaseis). Old word, but in the N.T. only here and Acts 4:22, Acts 4:30.

I am perfected (τελειουμαιteleioumai). Present passive indicative of τελειοωteleioō old verb from τελειοςteleios to bring to perfection, frequent in the N.T. Used in Hebrews 2:10 of the Father‘s purpose in the humanity of Christ. Perfect humanity is a process and Jesus was passing through that, without sin, but not without temptation and suffering. It is the prophetic present with the sense of the future.

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The Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament. Copyright Broadman Press 1932,33, Renewal 1960. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman Press (Southern Baptist Sunday School Board)
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Robertson, A.T. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rwp/luke-13.html. Broadman Press 1932,33. Renewal 1960.

Vincent's Word Studies

That fox

Herod. Describing his cunning and cowardice.

Cures ( ἰάσεις )

Used by Luke only.

I shall be perfected ( τελειοῦμαι )

The present tense: “the present of the certain future” (Meyer). The meaning is, I come to an end: I have done. Expositors differ greatly. Some interpret, “I end my career of healing, etc.; others, my life.

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Vincent, Marvin R. DD. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/vnt/luke-13.html. Charles Schribner's Sons. New York, USA. 1887.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

And he said unto them, Go ye, and tell that fox, Behold, I cast out devils, and I do cures to day and to morrow, and the third day I shall be perfected.

And he said, Go and tell that fox — With great propriety so called, for his subtilty and cowardice. The meaning of our Lord's answer is, Notwithstanding all that he can do, I shall for the short time I have left, do the works of him that sent me. When that time is fulfilled, I shall be offered up. Yet not here, but in the bloody city.

Behold, I cast out devils — With what majesty does he speak to his enemies! With what tenderness to his friends! The third day I am perfected - On the third day he left Galilee, and set out for Jerusalem, to die there. But let us carefully distinguish between those things wherein Christ is our pattern, and those which were peculiar to his office. His extraordinary office justified him in using that severity of language, when speaking of wicked princes, and corrupt teachers, to which we have no call; and by which we should only bring scandal on religion, and ruin on ourselves, while we irritated rather than convinced or reformed those whom we so indecently rebuked.

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Wesley, John. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/luke-13.html. 1765.

The Fourfold Gospel

And he said unto them, Go and say to that fox1, Behold, I cast out demons and perform cures to-day and to-morrow2, and the third [day] I am perfected3.
    Luke 13:32,33

  1. Go and say to that fox. That is, say to Herod, that crafty, sly fellow. The fox is a type of craftiness and treachery. We have no other instance where Jesus used such a contemptuous expression; but Herod richly merited it. An Idumean by his father, a Samaritan by his mother, a Jew by profession, and a heathen by practice, he happened to be foxy by nature. And he was even now playing the fox by sending these messengers.

  2. Behold, I cast out demons and perform cures to-day and to-morrow,
  3. and the third [day]. Wiesler, Meyer, Alford, and other able commentators think that the days mentioned in this difficult passage are literal days. If the language is to be thus construed, the saying amounts to a promise to leave Herod's territory in three days. Such construction, however, is not consistent with the elevation of the sentiment and the solemnity of its repetition. Three days are thus sometimes used proverbially to designate a short time (Hosea 6:2), and they are unquestionably so used here. The meaning then is this: "For a little while I liberate and heal and abide in your territory to disturb your peace. But in a few days I shall be perfected in my office as a liberator and healer, after which I shall be seen no more in your territory. And though I understand these plots against me, I must fill up my time and go on my course till I suffer martyrdom at Jerusalem, which has the gruesome honor of being the prophet-slaying city".

  4. I am perfected. This word finds its complement in the "It is finished" of John 19:30. Both the verbs are derived from the Greek word "telos", which means "end" or "completion". Compare also 2 Corinthians 12:9 Philippians 3:12; Hebrews 2:10; Hebrews 5:8,9; Hebrews 11:40.

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website. These files were made available by Mr. Ernie Stefanik. First published online in 1996 at The Restoration Movement Pages.
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J. W. McGarvey and Philip Y. Pendleton. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "The Fourfold Gospel". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tfg/luke-13.html. Standard Publishing Company, Cincinnati, Ohio. 1914.

Abbott's Illustrated New Testament

That fox. This was Herod Antipas, the son of Herod the Great, and the one who slew John the Baptist. He did not possess the savage energy of his father, but, as usual with those who are trained up under the immediate pressure of a merciless despotism, he was crafty, cunning, and indirect in his aims, though in heart unprincipled and cruel.--To-day and to-morrow, &c. He meant that he must go on with his labors of kindness and love for a little time longer, and that then his work would be done.

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Abbott, John S. C. & Abbott, Jacob. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "Abbott's Illustrated New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ain/luke-13.html. 1878.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

32 And he said unto them, Go ye, and tell that fox, Behold, I cast out devils, and I do cures to day and to morrow, and the third day I shall be perfected.

Ver. 32. Today and tomorrow] i.e. As long as I wish, without his leave. Faith makes a man walk about the world as a conqueror.

I shall be perfected] Or, I shall be sacrificed, as Pareus rendereth it, τελειουμαι, In sacrificium offerar.

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/luke-13.html. 1865-1868.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Luke 13:32. I do cures to-day and to-morrow, Some apply this to the years of Christ's ministry, supposing that a day is put for a year; but the explication is improper, because if the three days here mentioned were intended to comprehend the whole time of our Lord's ministry, this conversation must have happened in the first year thereof, contrary to St. Luke himself, who tells us, Ch. Luke 9:51 that the time was come that he should be received up. Besides, according to this interpretation, Christ's being perfected on the third day, will imply that he was to suffer in the third year of his ministry, which is far from being a certain point. The real meaning of the words seems to be as follows: "I shall not be very long with you on earth; yet, while I am here, I will perform the duties of my ministry, without beingafraid of any man; because my life cannot be taken from me, but in the place and at the time appointed by my Father." The word Τελειουμαι, rendered I shall be perfected, may refer to Christ's finishing the great work of atonement, and being by death consecrated to his office, as our great High Priest:—as the word is used, Hebrews 2:10; Hebrews 5:8-9; Hebrews 10:7.

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Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/luke-13.html. 1801-1803.

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

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).

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Meyer, Heinrich. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". Heinrich Meyer's Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hmc/luke-13.html. 1832.

Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament

Luke 13:32. εἴπατε, tell ye) if you dare.— ἐκβάλλω, κ. τ. λ., I cast out) He does not add, I preach the Gospel; for this would have been less within the comprehension of Herod. From the goodness of Jesus’ actions, the wickedness of Herod’s designs against Him stands out the more palpable and glaring.(133)ἐπιτελῶ, I use despatch in performing cures [conficio]) I am urgent, inasmuch as My time is short. He speaks with majesty in making answer to His enemies; with humility towards His friends. See Matthew 11:5; Matthew 12:27.— σήμερον καὶ αὔριον) So the LXX., σή΄ερον καὶ αὔριον, Joshua 22:18 [ ἐὰν ἀποστῆτε σή΄ερον ἀπὸ κυρίου, καὶ αὐριὸν ἐπὶ πάντα ἰσραὴλ ἔσται ὀργή], with which comp. Luke 13:28.(134) It is equivalent to a proverb concerning the time to come; as the phrase, yesterday and the day before, χθὲς καὶ τρίτην ἡμέραν, is used concerning the time past. If it had depended on Herod, not even a day would have been left to the Lord.— τελειοῦμαι) I reach the goalthe consummation. Comp. Hebrews 11:40 [“That they without us should not be perfect.”] On the third day He departed from Galilee [the territory of Herod], turning His course towards Jerusalem, being about to die there; see Luke 13:33, at the end: and so, from this time forth, He vividly realized to His own mind the consummation. [Nor did He return after this to Galilee, previous to His resurrection.—Harm., p. 407.]

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Bengel, Johann Albrecht. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jab/luke-13.html. 1897.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

See Poole on "Luke 13:31"

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Luke 13:32". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/luke-13.html. 1685.

Alexander MacLaren's Expositions of Holy Scripture

этой лисице Можно предположить, что применение Христом этого выражения трудно совместить с Исх. 22:28; Еккл. 10:20 и Деян. 23:5. Однако те стихи касаются ежедневных бесед. Часто пророки, выступающие как глашатаи Бога и имеющие власть от Бога, были уполномочены публично порицать вождей (ср. Ис. 1:23; Иез. 22:27; Ос. 7:3-7; Соф. 3:3). Поскольку Иисус говорил с абсолютной Божьей властью, Он имел полное право высказываться об Ироде в таких выражениях. Раввинские литературные произведения часто использовали слово «лисица», чтобы показать какого-то хитрого и в то же время ничего не стоящего человека. Фарисеи, которые страшились власти Ирода, вероятно, были поражены смелостью Христа.

сегодня, и завтра, и в третий день Это выражение означает только то, что у Христа было Свое, Божье расписание; оно не планировало буквально трехдневный график. Подобные этому выражения были общепринятыми в семитском употреблении и редко использовались в буквальном смысле для определения точного промежутка времени. См. пояснение к Мф. 12:40.

кончу Т.е. смертью в завершение Своего дела. Ср. Евр. 2:10; Ин. 17:4, 5; 19:30. Ирод грозился убить Его, но никто не мог убить Христа до наступления Его времени Ин. 10:17, 18).

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MacLaren, Alexander. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". Alexander MacLaren's Expositions of Holy Scripture. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mac/luke-13.html.

Justin Edwards' Family Bible New Testament

That fox; sly, subtle, mischievous man.

To-day and to-morrow; a short time.

I shall be perfected; shall have completed my work.

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Edwards, Justin. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "Family Bible New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/fam/luke-13.html. American Tract Society. 1851.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

32.Go ye and tell—These men did not claim really to have come from Herod Antipas. They do not pretend to report Herod’s own words as from him. But Jesus does, in his reply, recognize the fact which they leave unexpressed. He assumes that they came from Herod as with a murderous message, and he sends back his reply to Antipas by them. Our Lord thus unmasks the whole deceit, and holds Antipas responsible for at once his cunning and his cruelty.

That fox—Who conceals himself, yet threatens my life through you. Those who charge our Lord here with improper disrespect to his human sovereign, ought to see that the term fox is a just rebuke for Herod’s sin of artfulness.

Though our Lord uses this epithet to rebuke the present duplicity of Herod Antipas, yet fox-like cunning was one of the permanent qualities which he either possessed or affected. Wetstein says: “He, like many other princes of his time, shaped his manners after the model of the Emperor Tiberius, who, among all traits of character, prided himself upon his own dissimulation. Then Herod was an old fox, since he had held the government now thirty years and had played the most diverse characters. He played the slave to Tiberius, the master to Galilee, the friend to the Emperor’s prime favourite Sejanus, and to his own three brothers, Archelaus, Philip, and Herod II.; all whose dispositions were most opposite to each other, and to the temper of Antipas himself.”

Today and to-morrow—The method of Wieseler, as we have remarked, (p. 101,) furnishes here a very apt adjustment. Most commentators have been obliged to explain this phrase of time to be indefinite. This arises from their inability to indicate any particular period of two or three days which it can be applied to measure. But turn to John 11:6, and we find that after he received, at this very locality, the message of Lazarus’s death from the sisters of Bethany, he abode two days, and then said, Let us go into Judea. Let us suppose that the spies of Herod and the messenger of the sisters arrived at about the same hour, and the two days of John are just these two days of Jesus. Starting on the third day, Jesus would reach Bethany on the fourth, and find Lazarus four days dead. John 11:39. And so, too, if a message touching Lazarus and Herod Antipas arrived at the same time, we see how it happens that in a parable delivered a few hours afterwards a Lazarus and an infidel Rich Man present themselves to view. (See note on Luke 21:19-31.) And we may add that, keeping Antipas in view, we may, perhaps, discover a connection in the passage Luke 16:13-18, which commentators have been so puzzled to find.

The third day I shall be perfected—The Greek for I shall be perfected) , (being, as Van Oosterzee maintains, a present middle,) signifies, I complete or finish; namely my Peraean work.

So fearless and calm was the Saviour’s reply to the despot. Spite of the bloody threat, he will remain his full appointed time; he will perform those cures and dispossessions of demons that excite the tetrarch’s anxiety; he will then leave his work, not half done, but complete and perfected.

This period of two or three days covers, all our Lord’s discourse to Luke 17:10. How should we divide the matter into the days? It is not easy to say. We suggest that on the first day Jesus attends the feast, Luke 14:1-24 and Luke 14:25-35 is delivered to the crowd that followed him as he returned from the feast to his abode. On the second day are the assemblage and discourse, Luke 15:1 to Luke 16:31; while Luke 17:1-10 is uttered to the disciples on his way to Bethany.

 

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/luke-13.html. 1874-1909.

Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible

‘And he said to them, “Go and say to that fox, ‘Behold, I cast out demons and perform cures today and tomorrow, and the third day I am perfected.’ ”

But Jesus replies without fear. As in His reply to John the Baptiser He points to His signs and wonders. Let him consider those. (Even for Herod the door was open if he would listen). But Jesus’ words were not this time spoken in the hope that they would be effective. They had revivified the one who lay in Herod’s dungeons, they would leave unmoved the one who sat on the throne. Indeed His reply is probably acknowledging that He knows that He will not have long to live. He has only ‘today and tomorrow’, that is a comparatively short while. Nevertheless He knows that it is within God’s plan, for its ending on ‘the third day’ indicates completeness. Perhaps again He has Hosea 6:1-2 in mind. This would suggest that His perfecting at least includes the resurrection. Meanwhile He will continue His ministry, casting out evil spirits and healing the sick as He has always done. He will not be put off that by Herod’s threats. Let the fox bark as he will. And then in God’s perfect timing His career will achieve all that it has set out to do. He will be ‘perfected’, not at Herod’s choice but at God’s. To his listeners ‘perfected’ signified that He would consider His work complete, to Him it indicated that having risen from the dead as the perfect sacrifice for sin He would be enthroned as Messiah and Lord and share once more the glory of His Father (John 17:5).

“Go and say to that fox.” This is probably saying that Herod is nothing to be afraid of, for he is but a fox, not a lion or a wolf or a bear. He tries to roar, but all he does is bark. Whoever heard of running away from a fox? Some, however, see it as suggesting that he was to be seen as sly in his behaviour (a Jewish view of the fox), or even as despicable, like a scavenger, or a wrecker of vineyards (Song of Solomon 2:15). Or possibly like a fox which is content to linger among the ruins and does not seek to build them up (Ezekiel 13:4). In all cases they are only concerned for themselves and their own welfare. Foxes are of advantage to no one but themselves. But Jesus was not wont to insult people, even kings, so we must see it as a warning not name-calling.

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Pett, Peter. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible ". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pet/luke-13.html. 2013.

Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament

Luke 13:32. That fox. A figure of cunning and mischief. Herod deserved the name. As the Greek word for ‘fox’ is feminine, it is possible that the term points to Herod’s loss of manliness through the influence of Herodias. But it is not certain that this was spoken in Greek.

Do, or, ‘perform,’ cures. Our Lord mentions His works, because it was these, rather than His words, which had excited Herod’s anxiety (chap. Luke 9:7).

Today and tomorrow, and the third day come to the end, i.e., of these works in your country (Perea). This is the simplest sense of this much disputed passage; meaning: I shall remain in your territory three days longer. The days must then be understood in the literal sense. Some, however, refer them to His present work (‘today’), His future labors (‘tomorrow’), and His sufferings at Jerusalem (‘the third day’). Such a sense would not only be unusual, but it is opposed by the next verse, where the third day is a day of journeying, not of death.—The word used is in the present tense, because our Lord would tell Herod that the future to Him is certain.

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Schaff, Philip. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/scn/luke-13.html. 1879-90.

The Expositor's Greek Testament

Luke 13:32. , this fox; the fox revealed in this business, ostensibly the king, but in a roundabout way the would-be friends may be hit at (Euthy. Zig.). The quality denoted by the name is doubtless cunning, though there is no clear instance of the use of the fox as the type of cunning in the Scriptures elsewhere.— , etc.: this note of time is not to be taken strictly. Jesus is in the prophetic mood and speaks in prophetic style: to-day, to-morrow, and the third day symbolise a short time.— as to form may be either middle or passive. If middle it will mean: finish my healing (and teaching) ministry in Herod’s territory (Galilee and Peraea). This meaning suits the connection, but against it is the fact that the verb is never used in a middle sense in N.T., and very rarely in classics. Taken passively it will mean: I am perfected by a martyr’s death (Hebrews 11:40; Hebrews 12:23). Commentators are much divided between these meanings.

 

 

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Nicol, W. Robertson, M.A., L.L.D. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". The Expositor's Greek Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/egt/luke-13.html. 1897-1910.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

is rather surprising that Christ should make use of these opprobrious words, which could be of no service to himself, but which would only serve to irritate king Herod, should they come to his ears. But Christ, by these words, probably wished to shew that he was not the least afraid of him whom the Pharisees feigned to have a design on his life: for it is supposed that the Pharisees had invented this fiction, in order to compel him to leave them quiet. (Maldonatus)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/luke-13.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

fox. Figure of speech Hypocatastasis. App-6.

devils = demons.

do cures = perform, or effect cures.

cures. Occurs only here

and, Acts 4:22, Acts 4:30.

I shall be perfected = I come to an end [of My work]: viz. by the miracle of John 11:40-44. Compare John 19:30.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/luke-13.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

And he said unto them, Go ye, and tell that fox, Behold, I cast out devils, and I do cures to day and to morrow, and the third day I shall be perfected.

And he said unto them, Go ye, and tell that fox (that crafty, cruel enemy of God's innocent servants), Behold, I cast out devils, and I do cures today and tomorrow, and the third day I shall be perfected - or, finish My course, attain completion. 'Plot on and ply thy wiles; I also have My plans; My works of mercy are nearing completion, but some yet remain; I have work for today and tomorrow too, and the third day; by that time I shall be where his jurisdiction reaches not; the guilt of My blood shall not lie at his door; that dark deed is reserved for others.' He does not say, as Bengel remarks, I preach the Gospel-that would have made little impression upon Herod. In the light of the merciful character of Christ's actions the malice of Herod's snares is laid bare.

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/luke-13.html. 1871-8.

The Bible Study New Testament

32. Go tell that fox. A fox is symbolic of sly cunning. This described the character of Herod, It may be that Herod himself sent the Pharisees to try to scare Jesus. He could not kill Jesus because of his popularity. On the third day. Some think Jesus meant he would be moving on in three days’ time. But it is more likely he meant this symbolically, speaking of his teaching mission ending in the glory of the Cross and Resurrection.

 

 

 

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Ice, Rhoderick D. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "The Bible Study New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ice/luke-13.html. College Press, Joplin, MO. 1974.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(32) Go ye, and tell that fox . . .—The word was eminently descriptive of the character both of the Tetrarch individually, and of the whole Herodian house. The fact that the Greek word for “fox” is always used as a feminine, gives, perhaps, a special touch of indignant force to the original. He had so identified himself with Herodias that he had lost his manliness, and the proverbial type of the worst form of woman’s craft was typical of him.

Behold, I cast out devils.—What was the meaning of the message? What we read in Luke 23:8, perhaps, supplies the answer to that question. Herod “hoped to have seen some miracle done by Him,” and Jesus, reading his thoughts, tells him that the time for such sights and wonders was all but over. One day, and yet another, and yet a third—so our Lord describes, in proverbial speech (comp. the analogous forms of Exodus 5:14; Hosea 6:2), an interval of very short duration, and then “I am perfected.” The word is strictly a present tense used predictively, and may be either middle or passive in its meaning, the latter being most in harmony with the use of the verb elsewhere. “Then I am brought to the end; then I reach the goal of this human life of Mine.” Very noteworthy in connection with this passage is the prominence given to the verb throughout the Epistle to the Hebrews, as, e.g., in Hebrews 2:10; Hebrews 5:9.

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/luke-13.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

And he said unto them, Go ye, and tell that fox, Behold, I cast out devils, and I do cures to day and to morrow, and the third day I shall be perfected.
that fox
This was probably Herod Antipas, tetrarch of Galilee, who is described by Josephus as a crafty and incestuous prince, with which the character given him by our Lord, and the narratives of the evangelists, exactly coincide.
3:19,20; 9:7-9; 23:8-11; Ezekiel 13:4; Micah 3:1-3; Zephaniah 3:3; Mark 6:26-28
I cast
9:7; Mark 6:14; John 10:32; 11:8-10
I shall
John 17:4,5; 19:30; *Gr:; Hebrews 2:10; 5:9
Reciprocal: Genesis 22:4 - third;  2 Kings 6:32 - See ye how;  Song of Solomon 2:15 - the foxes;  Matthew 14:1 - Herod;  Matthew 14:9 - sorry;  Luke 9:9 - And he;  Luke 9:31 - spake;  Luke 23:9 - but;  John 7:30 - but;  John 9:4 - must;  John 13:1 - knew;  Acts 13:1 - Herod;  Hebrews 7:28 - consecrated;  Revelation 11:7 - when

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/luke-13.html.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

32.Go, tell that fox It is certain, that the person here spoken of is Herod Antipas. Though he had throughout the character of a fox, and was as remarkable for servility as for cunning, I do not think that the term, fox, is intended to refer generally to the cunning of his whole life, but rather to the insidious methods by which he labored to undermine the doctrine of the Gospel, when he did not venture to attack it openly. Christ tells him that, with all his craftiness, he will gain nothing by his schemes. “Whatever artifices he may devise,” says Christ, “today and tomorrow I will discharge the office which God has enjoined upon me; and when I shall have reached the end of my course, I shall then be offered in sacrifice.” That we may perceive more clearly the meaning of the words, Christ acknowledges, in the former part of his message, that on the third day—that is, within a very short time—he must die; and in this way shows, that he could not be deterred from his duty by any fear of death, to which he advanced boldly, with fixed purpose of mind.

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Calvin, John. "Commentary on Luke 13:32". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/luke-13.html. 1840-57.