Sunday, June 19, 2022

Proper 8 - Series C (26 June - 2 July)

Proper 8 Series C
(June 26-July 2)

Lord of all power and might, author and giver of all good things, graft into our hearts the love of your name and nourish us with all goodness that we might love and serve our neighbor

1 Kings 19: 9b–21
Galatians 5:1, 13–25
Luke 9:51–62

Christ’s Messengers Proclaim His Kingdom

When the prophet Elijah became discouraged and despaired of his life, “the word of the LORD came to him” (1 Kings 19:9b) and stood him “on the mount before the LORD” (1 Kings 19:11). The Lord made Himself known to the prophet — not in the impressive power of gale force winds, nor in an earthquake, and nor in the fire, but in “the sound of a low whisper” (1 Kings 19:12). 

Today God reveals Himself to us through the frail preaching of the Gospel. The Son of Man sends “messengers ahead of Him ... to make preparations for Him” (Luke 9:52). 

Putting their hand to that plow of preaching, they “go and proclaim the kingdom of God,” and they do not look back (Luke 9:60, 62). 

What they preach is not the power of the Law with its “yoke of slavery,” but the power of God unto salvation through the Gospel of forgiveness, by which “Christ has set us free” (Gal. 5:1).

A Samaritan Village Rejects Jesus

9:51 - This is a turning point in Luke's gospel. Now Jesus knows the end is near. He sets out resolutely toward Jerusalem. The cross is now His focus. It happened - as the time for him to be taken up to heaven. 

Ἐγένετο δὲ ἐν τῷ συμπληροῦσθαι τὰς ἡμέρας τῆς ἀναλήμψεως αὐτοῦ καὶ αὐτὸς τὸ πρόσωπον ἐστήρισεν τοῦ πορεύεσθαι εἰς Ἰερουσαλήμ,
When the days drew near for him to be taken up, he set his face to go to Jerusalem.

9:52 - Jesus sends messengers ahead. See 10:1 Jesus sent messengers to all places He would visit. These are official ambassadors, messengers,(pastors). See Matthew 25, "visited a stranger"

καὶ ἀπέστειλεν ἀγγέλους πρὸ προσώπου αὐτοῦ. καὶ πορευθέντες εἰσῆλθον εἰς κώμην Σαμαριτῶν,  ὡς ἑτοιμάσαι αὐτῷ
And he sent messengers ahead of him, who went and entered a village of the Samaritans, to make preparations for him.

9:53 - A Samaritan village will not welcome/ receive Jesus because He Is traveling on His way to Jerusalem. As they reject Him they reject the cross and the message of the cross. 

 καὶ οὐκ ἐδέξαντο αὐτόν, ὅτι τὸ πρόσωπον αὐτοῦ ἦν πορευόμενον εἰς Ἰερουσαλήμ
But the people did not receive him, because his face was set toward Jerusalem.

9:54 - James and John want to know whether they should call down fire from heaven.  Why?  They had just witnessed the Transfiguration. Are they being presumptive? 

 ἰδόντες δὲ οἱμαθηταὶ Ἰάκωβος καὶ Ἰωάννης εἶπαν• Κύριε, θέλεις εἴπωμεν πῦρ καταβῆναι ἀπὸ τοῦ οὐρανοῦ καὶ ἀναλῶσαι [e]αὐτούς;
 And when his disciples James and John saw it, they said, “Lord, do you want us to tell fire to come down from heaven and consume them?

Some manuscripts add “as Elijah did.” This echoes John's preaching about the wrath to come - See Luke 3:7-9  See also Elijah calling down fire  from heaven on the captains and their men - 2 Kings 1:10-14.

9:55 - 56 - Jesus rebukes them and they move on.  He gives no explanation. He must be rejected to save them. This echoes the repute of Peter. (The variant echoes Matt.20:28 and John 3:17 "For the Son of Man did not come to destroy the lives of men, vault to save." 

:55 has several variants - see the Good Samaritan 10:30-37,  and the Samaritan leper 17:11-19.

:55 Some manuscripts add And he said, “You do not know what manner of spirit you are of

στραφεὶς δὲ ἐπετίμησεν [f]αὐτοῖς.
But he turned and rebuked them

:56 Some manuscripts add or the Son of Man came not to destroy people's lives but to save them”

καὶ ἐπορεύθησαν εἰς ἑτέραν κώμην.
And they went on to another village.

The cost of following Jesus

9:57-62 - A summary of Jesus' exchanges on his journey - compare this with Matthew 8:19-22 - Note, these exchanges take place around the Sea of Galilee.  Together they reflect an unsentimental and realistic view of discipleship.  This might mean alienation if not persecution (see 9:23-25) it requires single-minded, unflinching devotion to Christ and His mission. See Hebrews 11:35ff  - This overrides social convention and family obligation (see 14:25-33).

9:57 - is this a fellow from the crowd of followers or one whom they encountered?

Καὶ πορευομένων αὐτῶν ἐν τῇ ὁδῷ εἶπέν τις πρὸς αὐτόν• Ἀκολουθήσω σοι ὅπου ἐὰν ἀπέρχῃ
 As they were going along the road, someone said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.”

9:58 - Foxes have holes, birds of heaven have places to dwell but the son of man has nowhere to recline his head.  

καὶ εἶπεν αὐτῷ ὁ Ἰησοῦς• Αἱ ἀλώπεκες φωλεοὺς ἔχουσιν καὶ τὰ πετεινὰ τοῦ οὐρανοῦ κατασκηνώσεις, ὁ δὲ υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου οὐκ ἔχει ποῦ τὴν κεφαλὴν κλίνῃ
And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.”

9:59 - 60 he turns and said to another, "follow me",  the man replied 'Let me first bury my father.' Jesus said to him, "let the dead bury the dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God."  1 Kings 19  Elijah allowed Elisha to say good-by to his family. - One greater than Elijah is here. 

εἶπεν δὲ πρὸς ἕτερον• Ἀκολούθει μοι. ὁ δὲ εἶπεν• Κύριε, ἐπίτρεψόν μοι ἀπελθόντι πρῶτον θάψαι τὸν πατέρα μου.
To another he said, “Follow me.” But he said, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.” 

 εἶπεν δὲ αὐτῷ• Ἄφες τοὺς νεκροὺς θάψαι τοὺς ἑαυτῶν νεκρούς, σὺ δὲ ἀπελθὼν διάγγελλε τὴν βασιλείαν τοῦ θεοῦ.
 And Jesus said to him, “Leave the dead to bury their own dead. But as for you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God.” 

εἶπεν δὲ καὶ ἕτερος• Ἀκολουθήσω σοι, κύριε• πρῶτον δὲ ἐπίτρεψόν μοι ἀποτάξασθαι τοῖς εἰς τὸν οἶκόν μου
Yet another said, “I will follow you, Lord, but let me first say farewell to those at my home.” 

εἶπεν δὲ [n]ὁ Ἰησοῦς• Οὐδεὶς ἐπιβαλὼν τὴν χεῖρα ἐπ’ ἄροτρον καὶ βλέπων εἰς τὰ ὀπίσω εὔθετός ἐστιν [p]τῇ βασιλείᾳ τοῦ θεοῦ.
Jesus said to him, “No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.”

"Anyone who does not follow in this way is not appropriate or fit or properly suited for the reign of God.”  εὔθετός 

Commitment to Christ Requires total Surrender

We encounter numerous excuses not to follow Christ. Have things changed over the years?

1. I will follow you wherever you go.”  - “Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.”
A.  I will follow so long as I am not inconvenienced.
B. I will follow so long as my creature comforts are not compromised.
C. I will follow but don’t make this discipleship too difficult!

2. "I will follow you, Lord; but first, let me go back and say good-by o my family.” Jesus replied, “No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.”
A. We need a total focus.
B. Jesus will take second seat to no one

Where are your priorities? John the Baptist’ words still ring true, “I must decrease, He must increase.”

ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.
The Greek New Testament: SBL Edition. Copyright © 2010 by Society of Biblical Literature and Logos Bible Software
Luther's Seal Copyright © Higher Things

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