Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Luke 9

Jesus Sends Out the Twelve Apostles

Jesus gave his guys power to heal and he sent them out to spread the word of God. He said to help anyone who accepts it and move on when people don't.

Herod Is Perplexed by Jesus

Herod was hearing reports that John was raised from the dead, that Elijah had appeared, and that one of the prophets of old has risen. He didn't know what to make of it.

Jesus Feeds the Five Thousand

Jesus goes to a desolate place and a bunch of people followed him. There wasn't enough food for everyone and they only had 5 loaves of bread and 2 fish. Jesus said a blessing and broke the bread and passed it around. There was plenty for everyone and afterward there was a bunch left over.

I have heard the interpretation of this story that many of the people had food on them secretly and Jesus basically motivated the people to share when they wouldn't have otherwise. Seems to square with the story the way it is written here.

Peter Confesses Jesus as the Christ

Jesus asks who the crowds think he is, some say John the Baptist, some say Elijah, Peter says he is the Christ.

Jesus Foretells His Death

Jesus says he will be rejected and killed and raised from the dead after 3 days.

Take Up Your Cross and Follow Jesus

Jesus says if you are truly with me take up a cross and join me. He says if you lose your life for Jesus you will gain in the afterlife.

I think that is what he says anyway, it's fairly cryptic.

The Transfiguration

Jesus went up a mountain along with Peter John and James. Jesus' face was altered and his clothing became dazzling white. He was talking with Moses and Elijah. Peter said they could set up some tents for Moses and Elijah but they departed quickly. Then a cloud came down and a voice boomed from the cloud saying Jesus is his son and to listen to him. Oh yeah, and in the middle of the story it mentions that the three disciples with Jesus were asleep, and they were groggy as this was happening, and it seems to have happened quickly.

I typically try to just let the miracle stuff go, but here it explicitly says the witnesses to this event were just waking up and groggy. It seems so much more likely to me that this was a dream.

Jesus Heals a Boy with an Unclean Spirit

There was a young boy who the disciples were unable to heal so the father asked Jesus to do it, he did.

Jesus Again Foretells His Death

Jesus told his disciples that he would be delivered into the hands of men. They did not understand because they didn't want to hear it. They were afraid to ask him further about the matter.

Who Is the Greatest?

The disciples argued which of them is the best and Jesus said the least if the one who is great.

Translation: the disciples were jockeying for position and Jesus told them to shut up. (agree?)

Anyone Not Against Us Is For Us

Someone not affiliated with Jesus was casting out demons in his name. Jesus said to let the guy be as he is not against us.

A Samaritan Village Rejects Jesus

His disciples went ahead of him to make preparations for Jesus at a Samaritan village. The villagers did not want to take Jesus in. The disciples then asked Jesus if they should have fire come from the heaven to destroy the village and Jesus said no.

The disciples are not nice people.

The Cost of Following Jesus

People who want to follow Jesus first wanted to bury their father or say goodbye to their family. Jesus said no.

I don't really understand the point of this.


  1. Jesus feeds the 5000. I've never heard that interpretation about asking the people who brought food to share. I'm not sure how I feel about it though. Part of me thinks its good, since you really should share with those who do not have, but the other half of me is thinking that the people who prepared by bringing their lunch with them have to suffer because other people didn't prepare. I'd be more than happy to share my lunch at work with someone who doesn't have any food, but I probably wouldn't be happy if my boss told me that I had to share my lunch with everybody.

    The transfiguration.. It's interesting how he says in Verse 27 that “But I say until you truthfully, there are some of those standing here who will not taste death until the see the kingdom of God.” To me that sounds really specific that Gods kingdom will come before they die. I guess it must be a metaphor.

    Boy with the unclean spirit. The boy sounds like he has a seizure. Is this saying that people with seizures are possessed? And why does Jesus get mad at the apostles for not being able to cure the kid?

    With me or against me? I just wanted to compare these verses again.;luke+11:23;matthew+12:30

    The cost of following Jesus. I think its terrible that they weren't even allowed to bury their father or say goodbye to their families. These are terrible family values in my opinion.

  2. The feed the 5 thousand thing, I don't mean to imply that Jesus forced them to share, in fact he didn't say it outright. It is more like, they see Jesus sharing what little food he has and they look at what they brought and just sorta go "I can get by with half of this, I'll throw the other half in the basket and someone else can eat." If this is what the story is saying I think it is really good. If everyone was sharing what they could the truly needy would often be taken care of. Also, if everyone was doing this you would share when you are doing well and at another time when you are having a hard time someone would share with you. Is that what this story is about? I don't know, honestly I don't think so, but if someone has that as a take away I'm not complaining :)

    The transfiguration thing, I have seen that defended as it is unclear what "the kingdom of God" is. It initially sounds like heaven, but it seems more about a worldly society under rule of God or something. It's hard to explain, but it's not necessarily end times stuff. Is that reasonable? I don't know. So some people have said when Jesus died on the cross it started the kingdom of God, what does that mean? Seems like a cop out to me, but that is one way I have seen people try to defend it.

  3. Oh okay.. I guess I misunderstood you. :) I think its great to help out anyone you can that needs it. Someday you just might. I remember reading somewhere or watching something that brought up this being an advantage in nature of cooperation. A bunch of apes of monkeys or a group or predators take down a prey and share it. One can't keep it to themselves for later as it will spoil. So, for example, I or a small group bring down a big elk and share it with my companions and other extended family members. Next time, maybe they might bring down something and share it with me. No sense in letting it rot.

    That does make sense.. though it seems like meanings seem to get changed a lot in the bible as time goes by. More and more things which used to be taught as literal are for no real explainable reason considered metaphorical, other than they weren't true to begin with. This was something that bothered me growing up.

  4. yeah that is true, it is hard to know when something is taught today as a metaphor if it used to be taught a literal. I suppose a historian could find those types of things out. Sounds like an interesting research project for someone who isn't me.

    The altruism stuff you were talking about reminds me of vampire bats. If one isn't allowed to feed the others will share with him. Initially the researchers thought the behavior was only between family but they later tested it and it was between unrelated bats as well. There was an expectation of later reciprocation I think. I probably read that in the selfish gene but it might have been a different book, it's been a while. It also reminded me of iterated prisoners dilemma. Which I have read about from several sources but I believe it was also talked about in selfish gene.


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