Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Luke 3:7-18: The Gospel Lectionary Passage for Sunday, December 13, 2009

This is my own translation of the lectionary gospel lesson for Sunday. Please make any comments concerning the passage you want. Together, let's discuss the Word of God:

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7Then he said to those who came from the crowds to be baptized by him, “Offspring of serpents, who pointed out to you to flee from the future wrath? 8Now bear fruit in keeping with repentance, and don’t start to say among yourselves, ‘As a father, we have Abraham;’ for I say to you that God is able, from these stones, to raise up children to Abraham. 9But already even the ax is lying upon the root of the trees. Then all trees that don’t bear good fruit are cut out and into fire are cast.”

10And the crowd began to ask him saying, “Then what should we do?” 11And he answered and said to them, “The one who has two tunics, let him share with one who doesn’t have, and the one who has food, similarly let him do.” 12And even tax collectors came to be baptized and they said to him, “Teacher, what should we do?” 13And he said to them, “Nothing more than you’re commanded collect.” 14And those in the army also asked him saying, “And we, what should we do?” And he said to them, “You should exhort nothing and you shouldn’t accuse anyone falsely, and be satisfied with your wages.”

15And because the people were waiting and they were all debating in their heart concerning John, whether he might be the Christ, 16John answered and said to them all, “I myself in water baptize you, but a person is coming who is more powerful than me, who’s sandal thong I’m not worthy to loosen, he himself will baptize in Holy Spirit and fire, 17whose winnowing shovel is in his hand to clean thoroughly his threshing floor and to gather the wheat into his storehouse, but the chaff will be burned up in fire unquenchable.” 18Then also with many other appeals he brought good news to the people.

1 comment:

  1. Early in the passage, there's two imperatives: "bear" and "don't start to say." I believe this establishes the "what." Although parts of this passage are also found in Matthew and Mark, the section dealing with the crowds, tax collectors and soldiers is unique to Luke. And since the Greek word translated "bear" (in bear fruit) and "do" (What should we do) is the same, Luke would seem to want his audience to know how to bear fruit. Tax collectors and either Roman or Herodian soldiers wouldn't claim Abraham as a father. In other words, this section explains the imperatives. Finally, the why is addressed in the last section, dealing with the coming Christ. And imagine of "Holy Spirit and fire" may have connections with Pentecost.

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