Torah | Torah

 Saturday, May 14, 2011

notes on past portions

A look at Luke 4


The  Gospels  are  the Word/Saying of Yahweh.

A Commentary on the New Testament from the Talmud and Hebraica
by John Lightfoot (1602-1675)
Exercitations upon the Evangelist St. Luke
Chapters 4-8

In this, you will learn

Did Jesus break tradition by reading only part of the haftarah portion?  NO. This practice is supported by Talmud.

Did Jesus break tradition by reading two separate passages? No. This practice is supported by Talmud.


A Premise heard:

"Jesus read part of the haftarah portion (a practice that is supported by Talmud) in the synagogue and they got so mad at him they tried to kill him"


Luke 4:28 (Consistent Translation) And all in the synagogue were-filled-full of-anger, hearing these-(things);
Luke 4:29 And having-stood-up they-cast him out without the city, and they-led him till the brow of-the mountain upon which their city had-been-built, with-reference-to to-throw him down-a-precipice.


What was said that upset them?


Luke 4:13  And having-finished-completely every trial the slanderer departed from him until (a) season.
14 And the Jesus returned in the power of-the Spirit into the Galilee; and (his) fame went-out down-over the total country-around concerning him
15 And he himself-was-teaching in their synagogues, being-glorified by all

16 And he-went into the Nazareth, the-place-where he-was having-been-nourished; and he-went-in according-to his having-been-custom in the day of-the Sabbaths into the synagogue, and he-stood-up to-read.

After being tempted by satan, then  IN THE POWER OF THE SPIRIT  Jesus read in the synagogue as his custom was.

They were used to Jesus reading (canting?) in this synagogue.

So he read part of the haftarah portion:

Luke 4:17 And (the) little-book of-Esaias the prophet was-handed-over to-him, and having-unrolled the little-book he-found the place, the-place-where it-was having-been-and-still-written, (Isaiah 61)

18  (The) Spirit of-Jehovah (is) upon me on-account of-which he-consecrated me to-myself-be-bringing-good-news to-(ones)-destitute, he-has-dispatched-and-is-still-dispatching me to-cure the-(ones) the heart having-been-and-still-shattered, to-preach forgiveness to-captives and receiving-of-sight to-(ones)-blind, to-dispatch with forgiveness (ones)-having-been-and-still-enfeebled,

comment from Matthew Henry:; in their reading, for the explication of the text, Christ added it from Isa. 58:6, where it is made the duty of the acceptable year to let the oppressed go free, where the phrase the Septuagint uses is the same with this here.

This reading is of a shortened weekly portion and adding a different portion part are normal practices as allowed by Talmud.

19 To-preach (an) accepted year of-Jehovah.
20 And having-rolled the little-book, having-given-(it)-back to-the officer he-was-seated, and the eyes of-all in the synagogue were staring to-him.

Note the dramatic effect Jesus' action had even while this standing to read and sitting to teach was the common practice of the time.  All eyes on him.   Jesus knew what He was doing.  This is how the Holy Spirit presents (writes) this story through Luke. The Holy spirit knew what He was doing. Note: Mat 26:55b Daily I-was-sitting-down with YOU teaching in the temple, and YOU-retained me not. - Jesus sat and taught but did not read in the Temple (HIERON),- only in the synagogue (νας - NAOS) where he grew up did he read, and this he did standing, as was customary.

21 But he-began to-be-saying to them, That today this scripture has-been-and-is-still-fulfilled in YOUR ears.

"this scripture" The second part of the prophecy, the day of God's vengeance, was still future.  This is why he stopped reading where he did - to emphasize what had been fulfilled.  The plain/simple understanding is not difficult.

:22 And they all were-bearing-witness to-him, and they-were-marveling upon the words of-the favor, namely-the-(ones) proceeding-out out-of-his mouth; and they-were-saying, Is not this-(one) the son of-Joseph?


There seems to be a bit of a break in the reaction here.  At this point, they were wondering (thinking) about what Jesus just said.  He had just told them He was the Messiah; that the first part of the prophecy of Isaiah 61 was fulfilled.  Jesus, by his omission of the rest of the quoted passage -which they well knew, and they had read the complete passage in previous years at this synagogue -, was also telling them that the day of vengeance ("2nd" coming) would be future -  not then.  See Isaiah 61:2

 They "wondered" or "marveled" about this message of grace, or better, "the words of-the favor".  That is, as Jesus said, he was "bringing good news" and preaching an "accepted year of Jehovah".  

They marveled at the prospect of Jesus being the Messiah. 

"Isn't this Joseph's son?"  One of their own was the Messiah?  Or, they likely wondered also, what exactly is he saying?  Can this be?

Also note vs 31And they-were-being-surprised upon his doctrine, because his word was with authority.

It seems both the context and manner of Jesus' speech got them to thinking.


An interesting comment from Matthew Henry:

"The books of the Old Testament were in a manner shut up till Christ opened them, Isa. 29:11. Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to take the book, and open the seals; for he can open, not the book only, but the understanding."

And from the Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the old testament, Vol 7, (Isaiah) pp580:

“Jehovah hath anointed me”
(mashach othi, more emphatic than mêshachani ), notwithstanding the fact that
mashach is used here in the sense of prophetic and not regal anointing
(1Ki. 19:16), we may find in the choice of this particular word a hint at the fact,
that the Servant of Jehovah and the Messiah are one and the same person. So
also the account given in Luke 4:16-22 — viz. that when Jesus was in the
synagogue at Nazareth, after reading the opening words of this address, He
closed the book with these words, “This day is this scripture fulfilled in your
ears” — cannot be interpreted more simply in any other way, than on the
supposition that Jesus here declares Himself to be the predicted and divinely
anointed Servant of Jehovah, who brings the gospel of redemption to His
Moreover, though it is not decisive in favour of our explanation, yet this
explanation is favoured by the fact that the speaker not only appears as the
herald of the new and great gifts of God, but also as the dispenser of them"

(emphasis is mine)


 Jesus, knowing their thoughts, continued speaking:

Luke 4:23 And he-said to-them, In-any-event YOU-will-say to-me this parable, Curer, you-heal yourself; as-many-(things)-as we-heard having-come-to-pass in the Capernaum, you-do also here in your fatherland. (as always, Jesus spoke to the Jewish crowd in parables.)
24 But he-said, Amen I-am-saying to-YOU, that not-one prophet is accepted in his fatherland.  (note how quickly this is fulfilled!)
25 But on truth I-am-saying to-YOU, many widows were among the Israeli in the days of-Elias, when the heaven was shut upon three years and six months, as (a) great famine came-to-pass upon all the land,
26 And to not-one of-them was Elias sent unless into Sarepta of-the Sidonia to (a) widow woman. (she was a gentile)

27 And many lepers were among the Israeli upon Elisha the prophet, and not-one of them was-cleansed unless Naaman the Syrian. (Naaman was a gentile)

28 And all in the synagogue were-filled-full of-anger, hearing these-(things);
29And having-stood-up they-cast him out without the city, and they-led him till the brow of-the mountain upon which their city had-been-built, with-reference-to to-throw him down-a-precipice.
 But he having-gone-through, through (the) midst of-them, he-was-proceeding.

(as vs14 shows, He was in the power of the Spirit..  That is, as God, he could pass through them.  Think: by Him all things consist - Jesus had the power over the molecular structure of all matter.  He could literally pass through them. That is, unless you believe Jesus needed some schooling from the Essenes to learn how to be God.  [A Key Point: Jesus could not be killed; He gave His life for our sin's propitiation.]

This "Power" is how Jesus got down from the pinnacle where Satan had placed him:

Luke 4:9 And he-led him into Jerusalem, and he-stood him upon the pinnacle of-the temple, and he-said to-him, if you-are the son of-the God, you-cast yourself down hence;
Luke 4:13 And having-finished-completely every trial the slanderer departed from him until (a) season. (meat hint: satan tempted Jesus six times)
Luke 4:14 And the Jesus returned in the power of-the Spirit into the Galilee; and (his) fame went-out down-over the total country-around concerning him.


What was it that Jesus said that was so upsetting to the Jews? 

Was it that he only read part of the Isaiah passage?  NO. This practice is supported by Talmud.

Were they upset that he read two separate passages? No. This practice is supported by Talmud.

Was it incorrect protocol by Jesus that upset them?  Give me a break. No.

Was it that he told them they were not worthy of The Messiah and that Gentiles could have a relationship with their God?     Yes.


There has been some argument that Jesus would have read the complete haftarah portion and that Jesus' words were cut out of the Greek texts by the Catholic Church (or someone else).  This notion is disproved by what scripture says, in both Old and New Testaments in this very context::

1Peter 1:25 (ASV 1901) "But the word of the Lord abideth for ever. And this is the word of good tidings which was preached unto you. "

Consistent Translation: "But the saying of-Jehovah is-remaining into the age. But this is the saying namely-the good-news-having-been-brought with-reference-to YOU"


The Gospels - The good news of the Messiah - are the Word/Saying of Yahweh.


The Word is NEVER lost or hidden from man.  The "true version written in Hebrew"  is not buried in the bowels of the Vatican.  The truth always has been and always will be readily available to man.

   The fact of the enduring Word is supported in The "Old" Testament:

Psalm 12: 6&7
vs6  "The words of Jehovah are pure words; As silver tried in a furnace on the earth, Purified seven times.
Thou wilt keep them, O Jehovah, Thou wilt preserve them from this generation for ever. "

This is what Jesus said about His words:

Mat 24:35 The heaven and the earth will-go-past, but by-no-means might my words go-past.


From these passages, we know absolutely that nothing in the Old or New Testaments is lost.  This makes Bible study a little more challenging, because it does not allow us to make things up to fit our doctrine.  We actually have to study to show ourselves approved unto God. Fortunately, we don't have to know everything.  This fact is produced in Paul's letter to the Corinthians:

I COR.13:12 For just-now we-are-looking through (a) mirror in (an) enigma, but then face to face; just-now I-am-coming-to-know out-of part, but then I-shall-come-to-know-thoroughly-for-myself according-as also I-came-to-be-known-thoroughly.
13 But at-this-instant trust, hope, charity (are) remaining, these three things; but the charity (is) (the) greater of-these.


If you don't know the meaning, it is better to say "I don't know" than to make something up.  However, everything is vanity.



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