Saturday, December 31, 2005

Investigation - Lk.7:36-50

Investigation & petition

“The conduct of both Jesus and of the woman is unlike either fiction or clumsily distorted fact. His gentle severity towards Simon and tender reception of the sinner, are as much beyond the reach of invention as the eloquence of her speechless affection.” (Plummer, 209)

“The underlying scandal of Jesus’ behavior is here once again that he is a friend to tax collectors and sinners (vs.7:34).” (Nolland, 355)

“. . . ‘sinner’ – probably a euphemism for ‘prostitute’ or ‘courtesan.’” (Nolland, 360)

“At an oriental banquet the guests left their sandals at the door and reclined on low couches with their feet behind them. It was not uncommon for the doors to be left open to admit all sorts of people, from beggars in search of food to a rabbi’s admirers in search of intellectual entertainment.” (Caird, 114)

“. . . the Pharisee addresses Jesus as [teacher], a word which is equivalent to ‘rabbi’, and which expresses a very considerable politeness on the part of the Pharisee. In Luke, Jesus is described or addressed as ‘Teacher’ frequently by non-disciples (8:49; 9:38; 10:25; 11:45; 12:13; 19:39; 20:21,38,39).” (Marshall 310)

“The word ‘alabaster’ denoted a globular container for perfumes. It had not handles and was furnished with a long neck which was broken off when the contents were needed. Despite the name the container was not always made of alabaster . . . Jewish ladies commonly wore a perfume flask suspended from a cord around the neck, and it was so much a part of them that they were allowed to wear it on the Sabbath.” (Morris, 146-147)

“Weeping in Luke normally connotes a sharp distress (often in bereavement) which does not fit here with the woman’s other gestures. We may speak of tears of remorse, but not of anguish, because this woman has found her peace. The sorrow of regret is suffused with the warmth of grateful affection.” (Nolland, 354)

“Some have held that Luke’s ‘sinner’ was Mary Magdalene, but this is sheer speculation.” (Morris, 146)

“. . . the significance of the action may be partly that the perfume would have been bought with her immoral earnings.” (Marshall, 308)

“Simon was conceited enough to think that a prophet would see in the woman exactly what the Pharisee saw; but where he only saw a sinner, Jesus saw a sinner pardoned and restored.” (Caird, 114)

“. . . two assumptions of the Pharisee, that a prophet would not allow himself to be touched by a sinful, and therefore, unclean, woman, and that the mark of a prophet is clairvoyance. . . . But the Pharisees assumptions are both wrong. Jesus is able to read his thoughts and reply to them, and also not only is Jesus willing to accept the touch of a sinful woman, but he even suggests that her action is more welcome to him than that of his host.” (Marshall, 309-310)

“vs.49 . . . To say ‘ within themselves’ rather than ‘among themselves’; so that Jesus was answering their thoughts, as he had already answered Simon’s.” (Plummer, 214)

My God, in the name of Jesus, help me to see others not as they have been, but as they are, and help me to see myself as I should be, not as I think I am. Amen.