New English Translation
Instructions on Prayer
11 Now[a] Jesus[b] was praying in a certain place. When[c] he stopped, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John[d] taught[e] his disciples.” 2 So he said to them, “When you pray,[f] say:
Father,[g] may your name be honored;[h]
may your kingdom come.[i]
3 Give us each day our daily bread,[j]
4 and forgive us our sins,
for we also forgive everyone who sins[k] against us.
And do not lead us into temptation.”[l]
5 Then[m] he said to them, “Suppose one of you[n] has a friend, and you go to him[o] at midnight and say to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread,[p] 6 because a friend of mine has stopped here while on a journey,[q] and I have nothing to set before[r] him.’ 7 Then[s] he will reply[t] from inside, ‘Do not bother me. The door is already shut, and my children and I are in bed.[u] I cannot get up and give you anything.’[v] 8 I tell you, even though the man inside[w] will not get up and give him anything because he is his friend, yet because of the first man’s[x] sheer persistence[y] he will get up and give him whatever he needs.
9 “So[z] I tell you: Ask,[aa] and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and the door[ab] will be opened for you. 10 For everyone who asks[ac] receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks, the door[ad] will be opened. 11 What father among you, if your[ae] son asks for[af] a fish, will give him a snake[ag] instead of a fish? 12 Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion?[ah] 13 If you then, although you are[ai] evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit[aj] to those who ask him!”
Jesus and Beelzebul
14 Now[ak] he was casting out a demon that was mute.[al] When[am] the demon had gone out, the man who had been mute began to speak,[an] and the crowds were amazed. 15 But some of them said, “By the power of Beelzebul,[ao] the ruler[ap] of demons, he casts out demons!” 16 Others, to test[aq] him,[ar] began asking for[as] a sign[at] from heaven. 17 But Jesus,[au] realizing their thoughts, said to them,[av] “Every kingdom divided against itself is destroyed,[aw] and a divided household falls.[ax] 18 So[ay] if[az] Satan too is divided against himself, how will his kingdom stand? I ask you this because[ba] you claim that I cast out demons by Beelzebul. 19 Now if I cast out demons by Beelzebul, by whom do your sons[bb] cast them[bc] out? Therefore they will be your judges. 20 But if I cast out demons by the finger[bd] of God, then the kingdom of God[be] has already overtaken[bf] you. 21 When a strong man,[bg] fully armed, guards his own palace,[bh] his possessions are safe.[bi] 22 But[bj] when a stronger man[bk] attacks[bl] and conquers him, he takes away the first man’s[bm] armor on which the man relied[bn] and divides up[bo] his plunder.[bp] 23 Whoever is not with me is against me,[bq] and whoever does not gather with me scatters.[br]
Response to Jesus’ Work
24 “When an unclean spirit[bs] goes out of a person,[bt] it passes through waterless places[bu] looking for rest but[bv] not finding any. Then[bw] it says, ‘I will return to the home I left.’[bx] 25 When it returns,[by] it finds the house[bz] swept clean and put in order.[ca] 26 Then it goes and brings seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they go in and live there, so[cb] the last state of that person[cc] is worse than the first.”[cd]
27 As[ce] he said these things, a woman in the crowd spoke out[cf] to him, “Blessed is the womb[cg] that bore you and the breasts at which you nursed!”[ch] 28 But he replied,[ci] “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey[cj] it!”
The Sign of Jonah
29 As[ck] the crowds were increasing, Jesus[cl] began to say, “This generation is a wicked generation; it looks for a sign,[cm] but no sign will be given to it except the sign of Jonah.[cn] 30 For just as Jonah became a sign to the people of Nineveh,[co] so the Son of Man will be a sign[cp] to this generation.[cq] 31 The queen of the South[cr] will rise up at the judgment[cs] with the people[ct] of this generation and condemn them, because she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon—and now,[cu] something greater[cv] than Solomon is here! 32 The people[cw] of Nineveh will stand up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it, because they repented when Jonah preached to them[cx]—and now,[cy] something greater than Jonah is here!
33 “No one after lighting a lamp puts it in a hidden place[cz] or under a basket,[da] but on a lampstand, so that those who come in can see the light. 34 Your eye is the lamp of your body. When your eye is healthy,[db] your whole body is full of light, but when it is diseased,[dc] your body is full of darkness. 35 Therefore see to it[dd] that the light in you[de] is not darkness. 36 If[df] then[dg] your whole body is full of light, with no part in the dark,[dh] it will be as full of light as when the light of a lamp shines on you.”[di]
Rebuking the Pharisees and Experts in the Law
37 As he spoke,[dj] a Pharisee[dk] invited Jesus[dl] to have a meal with him, so he went in and took his place at the table.[dm] 38 The[dn] Pharisee was astonished when he saw that Jesus[do] did not first wash his hands[dp] before the meal. 39 But the Lord said to him, “Now you Pharisees clean[dq] the outside of the cup and the plate, but inside you are full of greed and wickedness.[dr] 40 You fools![ds] Didn’t the one who made the outside make the inside as well?[dt] 41 But give from your heart to those in need,[du] and[dv] then everything will be clean for you.[dw]
42 “But woe to you Pharisees![dx] You give a tenth[dy] of your mint,[dz] rue,[ea] and every herb, yet you neglect justice[eb] and love for God! But you should have done these things without neglecting the others.[ec] 43 Woe to you Pharisees! You love the best seats[ed] in the synagogues[ee] and elaborate greetings[ef] in the marketplaces![eg] 44 Woe to you![eh] You are like unmarked graves, and people[ei] walk over them without realizing it!”[ej]
45 One of the experts in religious law[ek] answered him, “Teacher, when you say these things you insult[el] us too.” 46 But Jesus[em] replied,[en] “Woe to you experts in religious law as well![eo] You load people[ep] down with burdens difficult to bear, yet you yourselves refuse to touch[eq] the burdens with even one of your fingers! 47 Woe to you! You build[er] the tombs of the prophets whom your ancestors[es] killed. 48 So you testify that you approve of[et] the deeds of your ancestors,[eu] because they killed the prophets[ev] and you build their[ew] tombs![ex] 49 For this reason also the wisdom[ey] of God said, ‘I will send them prophets and apostles, some of whom they will kill and persecute,’ 50 so that this generation may be held accountable[ez] for the blood of all the prophets that has been shed since the beginning[fa] of the world,[fb] 51 from the blood of Abel[fc] to the blood of Zechariah,[fd] who was killed[fe] between the altar and the sanctuary.[ff] Yes, I tell you, it will be charged against[fg] this generation. 52 Woe to you experts in religious law! You have taken away[fh] the key to knowledge! You did not go in yourselves, and you hindered[fi] those who were going in.”
53 When he went out from there, the experts in the law[fj] and the Pharisees began to oppose him bitterly,[fk] and to ask him hostile questions[fl] about many things, 54 plotting against[fm] him, to catch[fn] him in something he might say.
- Luke 11:1 tn Grk “And it happened that while.” The introductory phrase ἐγένετο (egeneto, “it happened that”), common in Luke (69 times) and Acts (54 times), is redundant in contemporary English and has not been translated. Here καί (kai) has been translated as “now” to indicate the transition to a new topic.
- Luke 11:1 tn Grk “he”; the referent (Jesus) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
- Luke 11:1 tn Because of the length and complexity of the Greek sentence, a new sentence was started here in the translation.
- Luke 11:1 sn John refers to John the Baptist.
- Luke 11:1 sn It was not unusual for Jewish groups to have their own prayer as a way of expressing corporate identity. Judaism had the Eighteen Benedictions and apparently John the Baptist had a prayer for his disciples as well.
- Luke 11:2 sn When you pray. What follows, although traditionally known as the Lord’s prayer, is really the disciples’ prayer. It represents how they are to approach God, by acknowledging his uniqueness and their need for his provision and protection.
- Luke 11:2 tc Most mss, including later majority (A C D W Θ Ψ 070 ƒ13 33vid M it), add ἡμῶν ὁ ἐν τοῖς οὐρανοῖς (hēmōn ho en tois ouranois, “our [Father] in heaven”) here. This makes the prayer begin like the version in Matt 6:9. The shorter version is read by P75 א B (L: + ἡμῶν) 1 700 as well as some versions and fathers. Given this more weighty external evidence, combined with the scribal tendency to harmonize Gospel parallels, the shorter reading is preferred.sn God is addressed in terms of intimacy (Father). The original Semitic term here was probably Abba. The term is a little unusual in a personal prayer, especially as it lacks qualification. Although it is a term of endearment used in the family circle, it is not the exact equivalent of “Daddy” (as is sometimes popularly suggested). However, it does suggest a close, familial relationship. See also the note on Abba at Rom 8:15.
- Luke 11:2 tn Grk “may your name be held in reverence” or “may your name be considered holy”; traditionally, “hallowed be your name.”
- Luke 11:2 tc Most mss (א A C D W Θ Ψ 070 ƒ13 33vid M it) read at the end of the verse “may your will be done on earth as [it is] in heaven,” making this version parallel to Matt 6:10. The shorter reading is found, however, in weighty mss (P75 B L), and cannot be easily explained as arising from the longer reading.sn Your kingdom come represents the hope for the full manifestation of God’s promised eschatological rule reflected in the OT prophetic literature, the ongoing hope of the Jewish people, a hope which is subsumed by Christianity.
- Luke 11:3 tn Or “Give us bread each day for the coming day,” or “Give us each day the bread we need for today.” The term ἐπιούσιος (epiousios) does not occur outside of early Christian literature (other occurrences are in Matt 6:11 and Didache 8:2), so its meaning is difficult to determine. Various suggestions include “daily,” “the coming day,” and “for existence.” See BDAG 376 s.v.; L&N 67:183, 206.
- Luke 11:4 tn Grk “who is indebted to us” (an idiom). The picture of sin as debt is not unusual. As for forgiveness offered and forgiveness given, see Luke 6:37 and Matt 6:14-15.
- Luke 11:4 tc Most mss (א1 A C D W Θ Ψ 070 ƒ13 33 M it syc,p,h) add “but deliver us from the evil one,” an assimilation to Matt 6:13. The shorter reading has better attestation (P75 א*,2 B L 1 700 vg sa Or). Internally, since the mss that have the longer reading here display the same tendency throughout the Lord’s Prayer to assimilate the Lukan version to the Matthean version, the shorter reading should be regarded as authentic in Luke.tn Or “into a time of testing.”sn The request Do not lead us into temptation is not to suggest that God causes temptation, but is a rhetorical way to ask for his protection from sin. Some interpreters see this as a specific request to avoid a time of testing that might lead to a crisis of faith, but occurring as it does toward the end of the prayer, a more general request for protection from sin seems more likely.
- Luke 11:5 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “then” to indicate the implied sequence of events within the narrative.
- Luke 11:5 tn Grk “Who among you will have a friend and go to him.”
- Luke 11:5 tn Grk “he will go to him.”
- Luke 11:5 tn The words “of bread” are not in the Greek text, but are implied by ἄρτους (artous, “loaves”).
- Luke 11:6 tn Grk “has come to me from the road.”
- Luke 11:6 sn The background to the statement I have nothing to set before him is that in ancient Middle Eastern culture it was a matter of cultural honor to be a good host to visitors.
- Luke 11:7 tn Κἀκεῖνος (kakeinos) has been translated “Then he.”
- Luke 11:7 tn Grk “answering, he will say.” This is redundant in contemporary English and has been simplified to “he will reply.”
- Luke 11:7 tn Grk “my children are with me in the bed.” In Jewish homes in the time of Jesus, the beds were often all together in one room; thus the householder may be speaking of individual beds (using a collective singular) rather than a common bed.
- Luke 11:7 tn The syntax of vv. 6-7 is complex. In the Greek text Jesus’ words in v. 6 begin as a question. Some see Jesus’ question ending at v. 6, but the reply starting in v. 8 favors extending the question through the entire illustration. The translation breaks up the long sentence at the beginning of v. 7 and translates Jesus’ words as a statement for reasons of English style.
- Luke 11:8 tn Grk “he”; the referent (the man in bed in the house) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
- Luke 11:8 tn Grk “his”; the referent (the first man mentioned) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
- Luke 11:8 tn The term ἀναίδεια (anaideia) is hard to translate. It refers to a combination of ideas, a boldness that persists over time, or “audacity,” which comes close. It most likely describes the one making the request, since the unit’s teaching is an exhortation about persistence in prayer. Some translate the term “shamelessness” which is the term’s normal meaning, and apply it to the neighbor as an illustration of God responding for the sake of his honor. But the original question was posed in terms of the first man who makes the request, not of the neighbor, so the teaching underscores the action of the one making the request.
- Luke 11:9 tn Here καί (kai, from καγώ [kagō]) has been translated as “so” to indicate the conclusion drawn from the preceding parable.
- Luke 11:9 sn The three present imperatives in this verse (Ask…seek…knock) are probably intended to call for a repeated or continual approach before God.
- Luke 11:9 tn Grk “it”; the referent (a door) is implied by the context and has been specified in the translation for clarity.
- Luke 11:10 sn The actions of asking, seeking, and knocking are repeated here from v. 9 with the encouragement that God does respond.
- Luke 11:10 tn Grk “it”; the referent (a door) is implied by the context and has been specified in the translation for clarity.
- Luke 11:11 tn Grk “the”; in context the article is used as a possessive pronoun (ExSyn 215).
- Luke 11:11 tc Most mss (א A C D L W Θ Ψ ƒ1,13 33 M lat syc,p,h bo) have “bread, does not give him a stone instead, or” before “a fish”; the longer reading, however, looks like a harmonization to Matt 7:9. The shorter reading is thus preferred, attested by P45,75 B 1241 sys sa.
- Luke 11:11 sn The snake probably refers to a water snake.
- Luke 11:12 sn The two questions of vv. 11-12 expect the answer, “No father would do this!”
- Luke 11:13 tn The participle ὑπάρχοντες (huparchontes) has been translated as a concessive participle.
- Luke 11:13 sn The provision of the Holy Spirit is probably a reference to the wisdom and guidance supplied in response to repeated requests. Some apply it to the general provision of the Spirit, but this would seem to look only at one request in a context that speaks of repeated asking. The teaching as a whole stresses not that God gives everything his children want, but that God gives the good that they need. The parallel account in Matthew (7:11) refers to good things where Luke mentions the Holy Spirit.
- Luke 11:14 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “now” to indicate the transition to a new topic.
- Luke 11:14 tn Grk “a demon [and it was] mute.” The words “and it was” are omitted from some significant mss and are placed in brackets in the NA28 text, indicating significant doubt about their originality. If the words in question are omitted, the Greek text would read “a mute demon.” Either way, the phrase should probably be understood to mean that the demon caused muteness (the inability to speak) in its victim, although the statement is sometimes taken to refer to the demon’s own inability to speak (cf. TEV, “a demon that could not talk”).
- Luke 11:14 tn Grk “And it happened that when.” The introductory phrase ἐγένετο (egeneto, “it happened that”), common in Luke (69 times) and Acts (54 times), is redundant in contemporary English and has not been translated. Here δέ (de) has not been translated either.
- Luke 11:14 tn The aorist verb has been translated here as ingressive, stressing the beginning of the action. The context clearly indicates an ingressive force here.sn This miracle is different from others in Luke. The miracle is told entirely in one verse and with minimum detail, while the response covers several verses. The emphasis is on explaining what Jesus’ work means.
- Luke 11:15 tn Grk “By Beelzebul.”sn Beelzebul is another name for Satan. So some people recognized Jesus’ work as supernatural, but called it diabolical.
- Luke 11:15 tn Or “prince.”
- Luke 11:16 tn Grk “testing”; the participle is taken as indicating the purpose of the demand.
- Luke 11:16 tn The pronoun “him” is not in the Greek text, but is implied. Direct objects were frequently omitted in Greek when clear from the context.
- Luke 11:16 tn Grk “seeking from him.” The imperfect ἐζήτουν (ezētoun) is taken ingressively. It is also possible to regard it as iterative (“kept on asking”).
- Luke 11:16 sn What exactly this sign would have been, given what Jesus was already doing, is not clear. But here is where the fence-sitters reside, refusing to commit to him.
- Luke 11:17 tn Grk “he”; the referent (Jesus) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
- Luke 11:17 sn Jesus here demonstrated the absurdity of the thinking of those who maintained that he was in league with Satan and that he actually derived his power from the devil. He first teaches (vv. 17-20) that if he casts out demons by the ruler of the demons, then in reality Satan is fighting against himself, with the result that his kingdom has come to an end. He then teaches (v. 21-22) about defeating the strong man to prove that he does not need to align himself with the devil because he is more powerful. Jesus defeated Satan at his temptation (4:1-13) and by his exorcisms he clearly demonstrated himself to be stronger than the devil. The passage reveals the desperate condition of the religious leaders, who in their hatred for Jesus end up attributing the work of the Holy Spirit to Satan.
- Luke 11:17 tn Or “is left in ruins.”
- Luke 11:17 tn Grk “and house falls on house.” This phrase pictures one house collapsing on another, what is called today a “house of cards.”
- Luke 11:18 tn Here δέ (de) has been translated as “so” to indicate that the clause that follows is a logical conclusion based on the preceding examples.
- Luke 11:18 tn This first class condition, the first of three “if” clauses in the following verses, presents the example vividly as if it were so. In fact, all three conditions in these verses are first class. The examples are made totally parallel. The expected answer is that Satan’s kingdom will not stand, so the suggestion makes no sense. Satan would not seek to heal.
- Luke 11:18 tn Grk “because.” “I ask you this” is supplied for the sake of English.
- Luke 11:19 sn Most read your sons as a reference to Jewish exorcists (cf. “your followers,” L&N 9.4; for various views see D. L. Bock, Luke [BECNT], 2:1077-78), but more likely this is a reference to the disciples of Jesus themselves, who are also Jewish and have been healing as well (R. J. Shirock, “Whose Exorcists are they? The Referents of οἱ υἱοὶ ὑμῶν at Matthew 12:27/Luke 11:19, ” JSNT 46 : 41-51). If this is a reference to the disciples, then Jesus’ point is that it is not only him, but those associated with him whose power the hearers must assess. The following reference to judging also favors this reading.
- Luke 11:19 tn The pronoun “them” is not in the Greek text, but is implied. Direct objects were frequently omitted in Greek when clear from the context.
- Luke 11:20 sn The finger of God is a figurative reference to God’s power (L&N 76.3). This phrase was used of God’s activity during the Exodus (Exod 8:19).
- Luke 11:20 sn The kingdom of God is a major theme of Jesus’ teaching. The nature of the kingdom of God in the NT and in Jesus’ teaching has long been debated by interpreters and scholars, with discussion primarily centering around the nature of the kingdom (earthly, heavenly, or both) and the kingdom’s arrival (present, future, or both). An additional major issue concerns the relationship between the kingdom of God and the person and work of Jesus himself. See Luke 6:20; 11:20; 17:20-21.
- Luke 11:20 tn The phrase ἔφθασεν ἐφ᾿ ὑμᾶς (ephthasen eph’ humas) is important. Does it mean merely “approach” (which would be reflected in a translation like “has come near to you”) or actually “come upon” (as in the translation given above, “has already overtaken you,” which has the added connotation of suddenness)? The issue here is like the one in 10:9 (see note there on the phrase “come on”). Is the arrival of the kingdom merely anticipated or already in process? Two factors favor arrival over anticipation here. First, the prepositional phrase “upon you” suggests arrival (Dan 4:24, 28 Theodotion). Second, the following illustration in vv. 21-23 looks at the healing as portraying Satan being overrun. So the presence of God’s authority has arrived. See also L&N 13.123 for the translation of φθάνω (phthanō) as “to happen to already, to come upon, to come upon already.”
- Luke 11:21 tn The referent of the expression “a strong man” is Satan.
- Luke 11:21 tn The word αὐλή (aulē) describes any building large and elaborate enough to have an interior courtyard, thus “dwelling, palace, mansion” (L&N 7.6).
- Luke 11:21 tn Grk “his goods are in peace.”
- Luke 11:22 tn Because of the length and complexity of the Greek sentence, a new sentence was started here in the translation.
- Luke 11:22 tn The referent of the expression “a stronger man” is Jesus.
- Luke 11:22 tn Grk “stronger man than he attacks.”
- Luke 11:22 tn Grk “his”; the referent (the first man mentioned) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
- Luke 11:22 tn Grk “on which he relied.”
- Luke 11:22 tn Or “and distributes.”
- Luke 11:22 sn Some see the imagery here as similar to Eph 4:7-10, although no opponents are explicitly named in that passage. Jesus has the victory over Satan. Jesus’ acts of healing mean that the war is being won and the kingdom is coming.
- Luke 11:23 sn Whoever is not with me is against me. The call here is to join the victor. Failure to do so means that one is being destructive. Responding to Jesus is the issue.
- Luke 11:23 sn For the image of scattering, see Pss. Sol. 17:18.
- Luke 11:24 sn This is a reference to an evil spirit. See Luke 4:33.
- Luke 11:24 tn Grk “man.” This is a generic use of ἄνθρωπος (anthrōpos), referring to both males and females.
- Luke 11:24 sn The background for the reference to waterless places is not entirely clear, though some Jewish texts suggest spirits must have a place to dwell, but not with water (Luke 8:29-31; Tob 8:3). Some suggest that the image of the desert or deserted cities as the places demons dwell is where this idea started (Isa 13:21; 34:14).
- Luke 11:24 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “but” to indicate the contrast present in this context.
- Luke 11:24 tc ‡ Most mss, including a few early and significant ones (P45 א* A C D W Ψ ƒ1,13 M lat), lack τότε (tote, “then”). Other mss, including some early and important ones (P75 א2 B L Θ Ξ 070 33 579 892 1241 co), have the adverb. Although the external evidence better supports the longer reading, the internal evidence is on the side of the shorter, for conjunctions and adverbs were frequently added by copyists to remove asyndeton and to add clarification. The shorter reading is thus preferred. The translation, however, adds “Then” because of English stylistic requirements. NA28 has τότε in brackets indicating doubts as to its authenticity.
- Luke 11:24 tn Grk “I will return to my house from which I came.”
- Luke 11:25 tn Grk “comes.”
- Luke 11:25 tn The words “the house” are not in Greek but are implied.
- Luke 11:25 sn The image of the house swept clean and put in order refers to the life of the person from whom the demon departed. The key to the example appears to be that no one else has been invited in to dwell. If an exorcism occurs and there is no response to God, then the way is free for the demon to return. Some see the reference to exorcism as more symbolic; thus the story’s only point is about responding to Jesus. This is possible and certainly is an application of the passage.
- Luke 11:26 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “so” to indicate the concluding point of the story.
- Luke 11:26 tn Grk “man.” This is a generic use of ἄνθρωπος (anthrōpos), referring to both males and females.
- Luke 11:26 sn The point of the story is that to fail to respond is to risk a worse fate than when one started.
- Luke 11:27 tn Grk “And it happened that as.” The introductory phrase ἐγένετο (egeneto, “it happened that”), common in Luke (69 times) and Acts (54 times), is redundant in contemporary English and has not been translated. Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
- Luke 11:27 tn Grk “lifted up her voice and said.” This idiom is somewhat redundant in contemporary English and has been simplified to “spoke out.”
- Luke 11:27 tn For this term see L&N 8.69.
- Luke 11:27 sn Both the reference to the womb and the breasts form a figure of speech called metonymy. In this case the parts are mentioned instead of the whole; the meaning is “Blessed is your mother!” The warnings seem to have sparked a little nervousness that brought forth this response. In the culture a mother was valued for the accomplishments of her son. So this amounts to a compliment to Jesus.
- Luke 11:28 tn Grk “said.”
- Luke 11:28 sn This is another reference to hearing and doing the word of God, which here describes Jesus’ teaching; see Luke 8:21.
- Luke 11:29 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
- Luke 11:29 tn Grk “he”; the referent (Jesus) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
- Luke 11:29 sn The mention of a sign alludes back to Luke 11:16. Given what Jesus had done, nothing would be good enough. This leads to the rebuke that follows.
- Luke 11:29 sn As the following comparisons to Solomon and Jonah show, in the present context the sign of Jonah is not an allusion to Jonah being three days in the belly of the fish, but to Jesus’ teaching about wisdom and repentance.
- Luke 11:30 tn Grk “to the Ninevites.” What the Ninevites experienced was Jonah’s message (Jonah 3:4, 10; 4:1).
- Luke 11:30 tn The repetition of the words “a sign” are not in the Greek text, but are implied and are supplied here for clarity.
- Luke 11:30 tc Only the Western ms D and a few Itala mss add here a long reference to Jonah being in the belly of the fish for three days and nights and the Son of Man being three days in the earth, apparently harmonizing the text to the parallel in Matt 12:40.
- Luke 11:31 sn On the queen of the South see 1 Kgs 10:1-3 and 2 Chr 9:1-12, as well as Josephus, Ant. 8.6.5-6 (8.165-175). The South most likely refers to modern southwest Arabia, possibly the eastern part of modern Yemen, although there is an ancient tradition reflected in Josephus which identifies this geo-political entity as Ethiopia.
- Luke 11:31 sn For the imagery of judgment, see Luke 10:13-15 and 11:19. The warnings are coming consistently now.
- Luke 11:31 tn Grk “men”; the word here (ἀνήρ, anēr) usually indicates males or husbands, but occasionally is used in a generic sense of people in general, as is the case here (cf. BDAG 79 s.v. 1, 2). The same term, translated the same way, occurs in v. 32.
- Luke 11:31 tn Grk “behold.”
- Luke 11:31 sn The message of Jesus was something greater than what Solomon offered. On Jesus and wisdom, see Luke 7:35; 10:21-22; 1 Cor 1:24, 30.
- Luke 11:32 tn See the note on the word “people” in v. 31.
- Luke 11:32 tn Grk “at the preaching of Jonah.”sn The phrase repented when Jonah preached to them confirms that in this context the sign of Jonah (v. 30) is his message.
- Luke 11:32 tn Grk “behold.”
- Luke 11:33 tn Or perhaps “in a cellar” (L&N 28.78). The point is that the light of Jesus’ teaching has been put in public view.
- Luke 11:33 tc The phrase “or under a basket” is lacking in some significant and early mss (P45,75 L Γ Ξ 070 ƒ1 700* 1241 2542 sys sa). It is hard to decide in this case, since the inclusion of “or under a basket” is widely attested by some early and decent witnesses, as well as the overwhelming majority of mss (א A B C D W Θ Ψ ƒ13 M latt). The parallel passage in Luke 8:16 does not include “under a basket.” If the phrase “under a basket” were added as a harmonization with Mark 4:21 and Matt 5:15, it is perhaps surprising that scribes did not add the phrase at Luke 8:16 as well. It seems somewhat more likely that a scribe copying Luke would be inclined to harmonize 11:33 with 8:16 by omitting the phrase here. Thus, the words “or under a basket” seem to have the marks of authenticity.tn Or “a bowl”; this refers to any container for dry material of about eight liters (two gallons) capacity. It could be translated “basket, box, bowl” (L&N 6.151).
- Luke 11:34 tn Or “sound” (so L&N 23.132 and most scholars). A few scholars take this word to mean something like “generous” here (L&N 57.107), partly due to the immediate context of this saying in Matt 6:22 which concerns money, in which case the “eye” is a metonymy for the entire person (“if you are generous”).
- Luke 11:34 tn Or “when it is sick” (L&N 23.149).sn There may be a slight wordplay here, as this term can also mean “evil,” so the figure uses a term that points to the real meaning of being careful as to what one pays attention to or looks at. Ancient understanding of vision involved light coming into the body from outside, and “light” thus easily becomes a metaphor for teaching. As a “diseased” eye would hinder the passage of light, so in the metaphor Jesus’ teaching would be blocked from being internalized in the hearer.
- Luke 11:35 tn This is a present imperative, calling for a constant watch (L&N 24.32; ExSyn 721).
- Luke 11:35 sn Here you is a singular pronoun, individualizing the application.
- Luke 11:36 tn This is a first class condition in the Greek text, so the example ends on a hopeful, positive note.
- Luke 11:36 tn Grk “Therefore”; the same conjunction as at the beginning of v. 35, but since it indicates a further inference or conclusion, it has been translated “then” here.
- Luke 11:36 tn Grk “not having any part dark.”
- Luke 11:36 tn Grk “it will be completely illumined as when a lamp illumines you with its rays.”
- Luke 11:37 tn The use of the aorist infinitive here should probably be translated “as he spoke” rather than “while he was speaking” (see ExSyn 595). The Pharisee did not necessarily interrupt Jesus to issue the invitation.
- Luke 11:37 sn See the note on Pharisees in 5:17.
- Luke 11:37 tn Grk “him”; the referent (Jesus) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
- Luke 11:37 tn Grk “and reclined at table,” as 1st century middle eastern meals were not eaten while sitting at a table, but while reclining on one’s side on the floor with the head closest to the low table and the feet farthest away.
- Luke 11:38 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.
- Luke 11:38 tn Grk “he”; the referent (Jesus) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
- Luke 11:38 tn The words “his hands” are not in the Greek text, but have been supplied for clarity.sn Washing before meals was a cultural practice that was described in the OT, but not prescribed there (Gen 18:4; Judg 19:21). It was apparently related to concern about contracting ceremonial uncleanness (Lev 11:31-38; t. Demai 2.11-12).
- Luke 11:39 sn The allusion to washing (clean the outside of the cup) shows Jesus knew what they were thinking and deliberately set up a contrast that charged them with hypocrisy and majoring on minors.
- Luke 11:39 tn Or “and evil.”
- Luke 11:40 sn You fools is a rebuke which in the OT refers to someone who is blind to God (Pss 14:1; 53:1; 92:6; Prov 6:12).
- Luke 11:40 tn The question includes a Greek particle, οὐ (ou), that expects a positive reply. God, the maker of both, is concerned for what is both inside and outside.
- Luke 11:41 tn Grk “Give the things inside as alms.” Three different approaches have been taken to the syntax and meaning of this phrase: (1) τὰ ἐνόντα (ta enonta, “the things inside”) is an accusative of respect (“give alms with respect to the things inside”); (2) τὰ ἐνόντα is an adverbial accusative (“give alms inwardly,” i.e., from the heart); (3) the word translated “alms” represents a mistranslation of the original Aramaic term “cleanse,” so the statement urges the hearers to “cleanse the things inside.” According to D. L. Bock (Luke [BECNT], 2:1115) the latter meaning is unlikely because the present verse is independent of Matt 23:26, not parallel to it, and makes good sense as it stands.sn In Jewish culture giving alms to the poor was a very important religious observance; it was meant to be an act of mercy, kindness, and love (D. L. Bock, Luke [BECNT], 2:1114). The implication from the text is that the Pharisees gave alms, but without any of the spiritual concern which should have motivated those generous actions. Here Jesus commands the Pharisees to give from within themselves to those in need instead of just giving of their possessions. In so doing they would show true inner purity acceptable to God. This is in keeping with the author’s social concerns elsewhere in the Gospel (cf., e.g., 1:52-53; 4:18-19; 6:20-21; 14:13).
- Luke 11:41 tn Grk “and behold.” The Greek word ἰδού (idou) at the beginning of this clause has not been translated because it has no exact English equivalent here, but adds interest and emphasis (BDAG 468 s.v. 1).
- Luke 11:41 sn The expression everything will be clean for you refers to the agreement that should exist between the overt practice of one’s religious duties, such as almsgiving, and the inner condition of one’s heart, including true love for God and the poor; one is not only to wash the outside of the cup and plate, but the inside as well, since as Jesus said, God created the inside too. Religious duties are not to be performed hypocritically, i.e., for the applause and esteem of people, but rather they are to be done out of a deep love for God and a sensitivity to and concern for the needs of others. Then, everything will be clean, both hearts and lives.
- Luke 11:42 tn Grk “Woe to you…because you…” The causal particle ὅτι (hoti) has not been translated here for rhetorical effect (and so to the end of this chapter).
- Luke 11:42 tn Or “you tithe mint.”
- Luke 11:42 sn These small herbs were tithed with great care (Mishnah, m. Demai 2:1).
- Luke 11:42 tn Grk “and rue.” Καί (kai) has not been translated since English normally uses a coordinating conjunction only between the last two elements in a series of three or more.sn Rue was an evergreen herb used for seasoning.
- Luke 11:42 sn Justice was a major theme of OT ethics (Mic 6:8; Zech 7:8-10).
- Luke 11:42 tn Grk “those,” but this has been translated as “the others” to clarify which are meant.
- Luke 11:43 tn Or “seats of honor.” The term here is plural and is not a reference only to the lead “seat of Moses” in the synagogue, but includes the front seats near the ark.
- Luke 11:43 sn See the note on synagogues in 4:15.
- Luke 11:43 tn Grk “and the greetings.”sn The later Jewish summary of oral tradition, the Talmud, notes elaborate greetings for rabbis. The rebuke here is for pride.
- Luke 11:43 sn See the note on marketplace in Luke 7:32.
- Luke 11:44 tc Most mss (A [D] W Θ Ψ ƒ13 M it) have “experts in the law and Pharisees, hypocrites” after “you,” but this looks like an assimilation to the parallel in Matt 23:25, 27, 29. The shorter reading has earlier attestation from a variety of reliable mss (P45,75 א B C L ƒ1 33 1241 2542 lat sa).
- Luke 11:44 tn Grk “men.” This is a generic use of ἄνθρωπος (anthrōpos), referring to both males and females.
- Luke 11:44 sn In Judaism to come into contact with the dead or what is associated with them, even without knowing it, makes one unclean (Num 19:11-22; Lev 21:1-3; Mishnah, m. Demai 2:3). To Pharisees, who would have been so sensitive about contracting ceremonial uncleanness, it would have been quite a stinging rebuke to be told they caused it.
- Luke 11:45 sn That is, an expert in the interpretation of the Mosaic law. They worked closely with the Pharisees.
- Luke 11:45 tn For this term, see Matt 22:6; Luke 18:32; Acts 14:5; 1 Thess 2:2.
- Luke 11:46 tn Grk “he”; the referent (Jesus) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
- Luke 11:46 tn Grk “said.”
- Luke 11:46 tn Here “as well” is used to translate καί (kai) at the beginning of the statement.
- Luke 11:46 tn Grk “men.” This is a generic use of ἄνθρωπος (anthrōpos), referring to both males and females.
- Luke 11:46 tn Grk “you yourselves do not touch.” This could mean one of two things: (1) Either they make others do what they themselves do not (through various technical exceptions) or (2) they make no effort to help the others fulfill what they are required to do. Considering the care these religious figures are said to have given to the law, the second option is more likely (see L&N 18.11).
- Luke 11:47 sn The effect of what the experts in the law were doing was to deny the message of the prophets and thus honor their death by supporting those who had sought their removal. The charge that this is what previous generations did shows the problem is chronic. As T. W. Manson said, the charge here is “The only prophet you honor is a dead prophet!” (The Sayings of Jesus, 101).
- Luke 11:47 tn Or “forefathers”; Grk “fathers.”
- Luke 11:48 tn Grk “you are witnesses and approve of.”
- Luke 11:48 tn Or “forefathers”; Grk “fathers.”
- Luke 11:48 tn Grk “them”; the referent (the prophets) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
- Luke 11:48 tn “Their,” i.e., the prophets.
- Luke 11:48 tc The majority of mss list a specific object (“their tombs”), filling out the sentence (although there are two different words for “tombs” among the mss, as well as different word orders: αὐτῶν τὰ μνημεῖα (autōn ta mnēmeia; found in A C W Θ Ψ 33 M) and τοὺς τάφους αὐτῶν (tous taphous autōn; found in ƒ1, 2542). This suggests that early copyists had no term in front of them but felt the verb needed an object. But since a wide distribution of early Alexandrian and Western mss lack these words (P75 א B D L 579 1241 it sa), it is likely that they were not part of the original text of Luke. Nevertheless, the words “their tombs” are inserted in the translation because of requirements of English style.
- Luke 11:49 sn The expression the wisdom of God is a personification of an attribute of God that refers to his wise will.
- Luke 11:50 tn Or “that this generation may be charged with”; or “the blood of all the prophets…may be required from this generation.” This is a warning of judgment. These people are responsible for the shedding of prophetic blood.
- Luke 11:50 tn Or “foundation.” However, this does not suggest a time to the modern reader.
- Luke 11:50 tn The order of the clauses in this complicated sentence has been rearranged to simplify it for the modern reader.
- Luke 11:51 sn Gen 4:10 indicates that Abel’s blood cried out for justice.
- Luke 11:51 sn It is not clear which Zechariah is meant here. It is probably the person mentioned in 2 Chr 24:20-25.
- Luke 11:51 tn Or “who perished.”
- Luke 11:51 tn Or “and the temple”; Grk “and the house,” but in this context a reference to the house of God as a place of sanctuary.
- Luke 11:51 tn Or “required from.”
- Luke 11:52 sn You have taken away the key to knowledge is another stinging rebuke. They had done the opposite of what they were trying to do.
- Luke 11:52 tn Or “you tried to prevent.”
- Luke 11:53 tn Or “the scribes.” See the note on the phrase “experts in the law” in 5:21.
- Luke 11:53 tn Or “terribly.”
- Luke 11:53 tn For this term see L&N 33.183.
- Luke 11:54 tn Grk “lying in ambush against,” but this is a figurative extension of that meaning.
- Luke 11:54 tn This term was often used in a hunting context (BDAG 455 s.v. θηρεύω; L&N 27.30). Later examples of this appear in Luke 20.