TWELVE: Cp 12 springs at Marah (Exo 15:27). Cp Luk
10:1,2: another "12" and "70"!
Joshua had taken 12 stones out of Jordan, as a token of
Israel's dedication to turn the land of promise into God's kingdom.
Jesus ("Joshua") now selects 12 men (the first, Peter, called
a "stone"), baptized in Jordan, to become the foundation stones of a new
Jerusalem (Rev 21:14).
TAKE NOTHING FOR THE JOURNEY: Not so unusual in the
Mideast (LB 345). Hospitality was expected.
Similar provisions (no extra money, no shoes, no staff, etc)
were enjoined upon temple worshipers (Temple 65). The disciples were now engaged
in the service of the true "temple", Christ!
We are given so many reminders that God will provide for us,
and yet we still worry and panic so much that we possibly even prevent His
provision by our attitude of anxiety. The simple and childlike faith of these
disciples, who were with Jesus, should be reflected in believers today, even
though we have not seen with our eyes and handled with our hands.
NO EXTRA TUNIC: Not necessary at all in the East.
SHAKE THE DUST OFF YOUR FEET: The practice of pious
Jews before entering the Holy Land after a journey abroad. Used in Act 13:51.
Or, because their feet had not been washed as was custom (cp Luk
The gospel of the Kdom was preached even without full
knowledge of Christ's death and resurrection: cp Luk 9:44,45; 18:31-34;
Vv 7-9: Notice John the Baptist is now dead -- Luke does not
record the events associated with his death.
Source of this story: Manaen, former friend of Herod (Act
Clearly there was a great expectation at this time that
Messiah would come, and that he would be preceded by the coming of Elijah: Mat
16:14; 17:10; Mark 6:15; 8:28; 9:11; Luke 9:19; John 1:21. Additionally, there
were those "looking for the consolation of Israel": Luke 2:25.
Was there a family resemblance between John and
This, the third of four Passovers (Joh 2:13n).
Seven points of weakness in disciples: vv
Contrast the two feasts: (1) Herod's: sumptuous, captains and
kings, a "strange woman", a feast of death. A righteous man is slain on a whim.
(2) Christ's: frugal, for the poor, Christ's "bride", bread of life. The typical
death of one who lays down his life for his friends.
The time of this incident: the 3rd of 4 Passovers in Christ's
ministry (Joh 6:4n).
Jesus submerged his personal sorrow (at the death of John the
Baptist) by ministering to others.
FOOD: Sw Exo 12:39; Psa 78:25. This was a Passover
// Psa 23.
SIT DOWN IN GROUPS: Cp special ordering of wilderness
encampments (Num 2). The people encamp in orderly fashion around Jesus, who is
the "Ark" of God, and the "Shekinah Glory"!
Cp language of Last Supper.
Cp 2Ki 4:42-44: Elijah feeds a multitude.
SATISFIED: Satisfied with the bread of heaven: Psa
105:40; cp Psa 22:26; 12:13-16; Isa 25:6-8.
AND THE DISCIPLES PICKED UP TWELVE BASKETFULS OF BROKEN
PIECES: Twelve baskets = twelve apostles! In ministering to others, they
lost nothing themselves. (In the atonement of Christ, there is ample provision
12 BASKETFULS: "Kophinos" = small basket, in ct
"spuris" (large basket) of Mat 15:37; Mar 8:8. Twelve full baskets, ie, the 12
apostles, full of the "bread" of life. In ministering to others, they lost
nothing themselves. In the atonement of Christ, there is ample provision for
BROKEN PIECES: Which the Canaanite woman, like a "dog"
under the Jewish "table", was only too willing to eat (Mat 15:27; Mar 7:28).
They had come to Caesarea Philippi, the furthest possible
point from the temple ritual (Mat 16:13; Mar 8:27).
WHO DO THE CROWDS SAY I AM?: Jesus said unto them, "Who
do you say I am?" And they replied, "You are the eschatological manifestation of
the ground of our being, the kerygma in which we find the ultimate meaning of
our interpersonal relationship." And Jesus said, "Come again?"
Follow the religious notions of the crowd, and you are almost
certain to be wrong. (Notice that popular sentiment did not proclaim Jesus as
Messiah any more; very evidently, this man did not WANT to be king!)
This is the first time that Jesus has clearly stated that he
is to die. That this is so is made more clear in Matthew's account of the same
incident: "From that time on Jesus began to explain to his disciples that he
must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things at the hands of the elders, chief
priests and teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and on the third day
be raised to life" (Mat 16:21).
Cp Elijah, rejected by Ahab and Jezebel, but "raised" from
despondency (1Ki 19:2-8).
AND TAKE UP HIS CROSS: If you're not going to carry
your cross, don't bother making the trip!
AND FOLLOW ME: "Of the three things enjoined, the last
is a vital thing: to follow. The other two [denying self and taking up the
cross] are utterly essential because through the essential you achieve that
which is vital. The reason is this. You can approve, and not follow. You can
applaud and not follow. You can understand and preach, without following. You
can defend the Truth pugnaciously, without following. You can tire yourself out
on busy works -- without following... The central thing is the denial of self.
It is utterly radical. Denial of self is the inward thing. Taking up the cross
daily is the external manifestation of the inward condition. To talk of it is
not to realize it. To write about it is not to achieve it. The use of the word
'daily' emphasizes that it is not just a theory but something that is real and
practical; facing squarely every new circumstance; confronting bravely every
impediment; grasping joyfully every new opportunity. In practice it means giving
unhindered access to the Master into every chamber and especially into every
dark corner. To think of that possibility might make us feel ashamed but at the
same time it may do us good" (GD).
WHAT GOOD IS IT FOR A MAN TO GAIN THE WHOLE WORLD:
Square miles they conquered:
1. Genghis Khan (1162-1227), 4,860,000.
2. Alexander the Great (356-323 BC) 2,180,000.
3. Tamerlane (1336-1405), 2,145,000.
4. Cyrus the Great (600-529 BC), 2,090,000.
5. Attila (406-453), 1,450,000.
6. Adolf Hitler (1889-1945), 1,370,000, all of which he lost
in 3 years.
7. Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821) 720,000.
8. Mahmud of Ghazni (971-1030) 680,000.
9. Francisco Pizarro (1470-1541), 480,000.
10. Hernando Cortes (1485-1547), 315,000.
The Jews' judgments are for our example and admonition (1Co
How will they "see"? By seeing the glory of God in His only
Son (Joh 1:14; Jam 2:1), esp at Transfiguration (vv 28-36; cp 2Pe
EIGHT DAYS: Given as 6 days in Mat 17:1; Mar 9:2.
Perhaps Luke counted beginning and ending days, whereas Matthew and Mark did not
A MOUNTAIN: Climbing the mountain: a parable of our
journey to the Kdom. Poss site: Mt Nebo, where Moses died (Deu 34) and Elijah
ascended (2Ki 2).
Instances of Jesus withdrawing into a mountain, apart --
sometimes for privacy and prayer, and sometimes to instruct his followers: Mat
5:1; 8:1; 14:23; 15:29; 17:1; 24:3; 28:16; Mark 3:13; 6:46; 9:2; 13:3; Luke
6:12; 9:28; 22:39; John 6:3,15; 8:1.
DEPARTURE: Gr "exodus": ie Christ's mission, the
deliverance of brethren from Egyptian bondage (cp Heb 2:15).
HE DID NOT KNOW WHAT HE WAS SAYING: Do we always have
to say something?
Cp the overshadowing Cloud of Presence in
THE DISCIPLES KEPT THIS TO THEMSELVES, AND TOLD NO ONE AT
THAT TIME WHAT THEY HAD SEEN: Silence was his settled policy for most of his
ministry (Mat 9:30; 17:9; 12:16; Mar 1:34; 5:43; 7:36; 8:26; Luk 5:14), with one
notable exception (Mar 5:19 -- Legion with his family). But in last days of
ministry, a change of course (Mat 21:1-11; Joh 7:37; 9:3; 11:4).
Vv 37-43: Power of faith and intercession of others: Mat 8:13;
9:32; 15:28; 17:14-18; Luk 8:50; Joh 4:49; Jos 6:17; Gen 7:1; 18:32; 19:12; Act
Cp 2Ki 4:29-37: child healed, but disciples (ie Gehazi)
AS TO WHICH OF THEM WOULD BE THE GREATEST: Cp 2Ki
5:22,26: the disciple Gehazi seeks "greatness" and wealth. Don't many of our
little ecclesial disputes have their roots in this question? This dispute did
not cease altogether until Christ's death (Mar 10:35; Luk 22:24-30).
Suggestion: the special three at the Transfiguration (Luk
9:28...) arouse envy in others.
Astounding! The smallest child = Christ, and Christ =
"Today's great men are the ones who are in powerful positions,
the President of the United States, the Prime Minister of England, President and
Prime Minister of Russia and successful business people like Bill Gates and
"But today's great men are there because they have climbed
their way to the top, doing all they have to do to get there and using anyone
they need to use on the way. More often than not they are power-hungry or
money-hungry and willing to do anything to get what they want.
"Jesus tells us of a different type of great man. 'He who is
least among you -- he is the greatest.' And he spoke about children, who, as far
as greatness goes, are least of all. The great man is the one who can welcome a
child, make him feel at home and wanted, who has time for him, putting the needs
of the child ahead of his own. The great man is the one who is the servant of
everyone else, putting the needs of others first.
"The difference between the great men of today and the great
men of God is that today's me will have had their time -- and it ends in death
-- but God's great men will live for ever. Be great for God" (RP).
A MAN DRIVING OUT DEMONS IN YOUR NAME: Something the 9
disciples could not do (Mar 9:18,28; Luk 9:40). A further fear for loss of
status. (We may assume Christ knew the man and his mission).
NOT ONE OF US: Not one of the disciples. But he may
have been a follower of Christ. Even if he did not acknowledge their precedence,
he might still acknowledge Jesus.
FOR WHOEVER IS NOT AGAINST YOU IS FOR YOU: In Luk 9:50
those not against the disciples and their work will not lightly speak evil of
Christ. It isn't ours to forbid any work done, however imperfectly, in Christ's
name. But in Luk 11:23 neutrality now becomes an impossibility.
APPROACHED: "Sumpleroo" = to be filled up together; an
intensive form: 'when the time was fully come.'
TAKEN UP: "Heaven" not in orig. KJV has "received up".
May sig: sacrifice and resurrection (taken up from grave), and then (later)
JESUS RESOLUTELY SET OUT FOR JERUSALEM: Jesus is
beginning his journey to Jerusalem. Whilst this is a spiritual journey the focus
is now on the cross. We can trace the journey thus: Luk 9:51,53,57; 10:38;
13:22,33; 17:11; 18:31; 19:11,28. This is a spiritual journey rather than a
direct route: this will be seen by noting where Jesus is on each occasion.
TO CALL FIRE DOWN FROM HEAVEN: // 2Ki 1:10,12. Christ's
mission: to save and not to destroy (v 56). (Perhaps John himself preached in
this very village later: Act 8:25).
I WILL FOLLOW YOU WHEREVER YOU GO: A "volunteer". Did
he know what he was saying?
THE SON OF MAN HAS NO PLACE TO LAY HIS HEAD: It had
been true even at his birth (Luk 2:7)!
Examples of prophetic reluctance: Exo 4:10; Jer 1:6; Eze 3:14;
Jon 1:3; 1Ki 19:10; Luk 5:8,10; 9:59; 18:23; Act 13:13; 18:9. Ct Isa
LORD, FIRST LET ME GO AND BURY MY FATHER: Lamsa writes:
" 'My father is an old man, over seventy years of age. I have to support him
until he dies.' In the East when a man reaches this age, he is considered dead.
He has finished his work and has no more interest in life. He can no longer earn
and produce. He is a burden on the family. He entrusts everything to his oldest
son, his first born; the son who is to continue his posterity. He has labored
and toiled with the sweat of his brow, and raised his children. Now he expects
them to take care of him. One often hears Easterners say: 'My father is near the
grave!' 'My father is at the side of the grave.' The real meaning is, 'My father
may die any day. My father is very old; I expect him to pass away any time.' If
this man's father had been dead Jesus would not have been preaching that day.
Instead He would have been one of the mourners until the dead man was
Or, possibly such a figure of speech could also have been used
by a man whose father was not nearly that old, nor at the point of death. "First
let me bury my father" might then be his idiomatic way of saying: "I cannot
commit myself to such an enterprise so long as my father is alive. I must first
of all honor his wishes." Thus implying: "When my father has died -- 20 or 30
years from now -- then I will be my own man, and I can follow you."
LET THE DEAD BURY THEIR OWN DEAD: Or, "Leave dead to
the burier of the dead." Lamsa writes: "The Aramaic word for 'dead' is 'metta',
and the word for 'town' is 'matta'... It seems more likely that the early
copyists and translators confused the [two words] and what Jesus meant was, 'let
the town bury the dead.' This seems more reasonable because each town buries
their own dead."
Vv 61,62: Cp Elisha when called by Elijah: 1Ki
SAY GOOD-BY: Farewells, like greetings, could be very
long (Luk 10:4).