GOSPEL of LUKE
Thirteen and Fourteen
"To what is the kingdom of God like, and to what
will I compare it? It is like a grain of mustard seed, which a man
took and cast into his garden; and it grew until it became a tree,
and the birds of the air found a lodging in its branches."
time some men came and told Jesus about the Galilaeans whose blood
Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. "Do you think," he answered,
"that these Galilaeans were sinners above all the Galilaeans because
this happened to them? I tell you, No! But unless you repent you
will all perish in like manner. Or, as for the eighteen on whom
the tower in Siloam fell - do you think they were debtors to God
beyond all those who dwell in Jerusalem? I tell you, No! But unless
you repent you will perish in the same way."
GOSPEL OF THE OTHER CHANCE AND
THE THREAT OF THE LAST CHANCE
Jesus spoke this
parable; "A man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard. He came
looking for fruit on it and did not find it. He said to the keeper
of the vineyard, 'Look you - for the last three years I have been
coming and looking for fruit on this fig tree, and I still am not
finding any. Cut it down! Why should it use up the ground?' 'Lord,'
he answered him 'let it be this year too, until I dig round about
it and manure it, and if it bears fruit in the coming year, well
and good; but if not, you will cut it down.'"
MORE THAN LAW
was teaching in one of the synagogues on the Sabbath; and - look
you - there was a woman there who had a spirit of weakness for eighteen
years. She was bent together and could not straighten up properly.
When Jesus saw her he called her to him. "Woman," he said, "you
are set free from your weakness"; and he laid his hands upon her;
and immediately she was straightened. The president of the synagogue
was vexed that Jesus had healed on the Sabbath. "Are there not six
days," he said to the crowd, "in which work ought to be done? Come
and be healed on them and not on the Sabbath day." "
the Lord answered. "Does each one of you not loose his ox or his
ass from the manger on the Sabbath, and lead him out and give him
drink? And as for this woman, a daughter of Abraham, whom - look
you - Satan bound for eighteen years, should she not have been loosed
from this bond on the Sabbath day?" And, as he said this, his opponents
were put to shame, and all the crowd rejoiced at the glorious things
that were done by him.
EMPIRE OF CHRIST
said to them, "To what is the kingdom of God like, and to what will
I compare it? It is like a grain of mustard seed, which a man took
and cast into his garden; and it grew until it became a tree, and
the birds of the air found a lodging in its branches."
LEAVEN OF THE KINGDOM
Jesus said, "To what will I liken the kingdom of God? It is like
leaven, which a woman took and hid in three measures of meal, until
the whole was leavened."
RISK OF BEING SHUT OUT
continued to go through towns and villages, teaching and making
his way to Jerusalem. "Lord," someone said to him, "are those who
are to be saved few in number?" He said to them, "Keep on striving
to enter through the narrow door, because many, I tell you, will
seek to enter in and will not be able to. Once the master of the
house has risen and shut the door, and when you begin to stand outside
and knock, saying, 'Lord, open to us,' he will answer you, 'I do
not know where you come from.' Then you will begin to say, 'We have
eaten and drunk in your presence and you taught in our streets.'
He will say, 'I tell you, I do not know where you come from. Depart
from me all you who are workers of iniquity.' There will be weeping
and gnashing of teeth there, when you will see Abraham and Isaac
and Jacob in the kingdom of God and yourselves cast out. And they
will come from the east and from the west, and from the north and
from the south, and take their places at table in the kingdom of
God. And - look you - there are those who are last who will be first,
and there are those first who will be last."
hour some Pharisees came to Jesus. "Depart," they said to him, "and
get on your way from this place, because Herod is out to kill you."
he said, "and tell that fox, look you, I cast out demons and I work
cures today and tomorrow, and on the third day my work is perfected.
I must be on my way today, and tomorrow and the next day, because
it is not possible for a prophet to perish out of Jerusalem. Jerusalem!
Jerusalem! Killer of the prophets! Stoner of those who were sent
to you! How often I wanted to gather together your children as a
hen gathers her brood under her wings - and you would not! Look
you; your house is desolate. I tell you, you will not see me until
you shall say, 'Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.'"
UNDER THE SCRUTINY OF HOSTILE MEN
Sabbath day Jesus had gone into the house of one of the rulers who
belonged to the Pharisees to eat bread; and they were watching him.
And - look you - there was a man before him who had dropsy. Jesus
said to the Scribes and Pharisees, "Is it lawful to heal on the
Sabbath? Or, is it not?" They kept silent. So he took him and healed
him and sent him away. He said to them, "Suppose one of you has
an ass or an ox, and it falls into a well, will he not immediately
pull it out, even if it is on the Sabbath day?" And they had no
answer to these things.
NECESSITY OF HUMILITY
spoke a parable to the invited guests, for he noticed how they chose
the first places at the table. "When you are bidden by someone to
a marriage feast," he said, "do not take your place at table in
the first seat, in case someone more distinguished than you has
been invited, for in that case the man who invited you will come
and say to you, 'Give place to this man.' And then, with shame,
you will begin to take the lowest place. But, when you have been
invited, go and sit down in the lowest place, so that, when the
man who has invited you comes, he will say to you, 'Friend, come
up higher.' Then you will gain honour in front of all who sit at
table with you. For he who exalts himself will be humbled, and he
who humbles himself will be exalted."
said to the man who had invited him, "Whenever you give a dinner
or a banquet, do not call your friends, or your brothers, or your
kinsfolk or your rich neighbors, in case they invite you back again
in return and you receive a repayment. But when you give a feast,
invite the poor, the maimed, the lame and the blind. Then you will
be happy, because they cannot repay you. You will receive your repayment
at the resurrection of the righteous."
KING'S BANQUET AND THE KING'S GUESTS
of those who were sitting at table with Jesus heard this, he said,
"Happy is the man who eats bread in the kingdom of God." Jesus said
to him, "There was a man who made a great banquet, and who invited
many people to it. At the time of the banquet he sent his servants
to say to those who had been invited, 'Come, because everything
is now ready.' With one accord they all began to make excuses. The
first said to him, 'I have bought a field, and I must go out and
see it. Please have me excused.' Another said, 'I have bought five
yoke of oxen, and I am on my way to try them out. Please have me
excused.' Another said, 'I have married a wife, and, therefore,
I cannot come.' So the servant came and told his master these things.
The master of the house was enraged, and said to his servant, 'Go
out quickly to the streets and lanes of the town and bring here
the poor, and the maimed, and the blind and the lame.' The servant
said, 'Sir, your orders have been carried out and there is still
room.' So the master said to his servant, 'Go out to the roads and
to the hedges, and compel them to come in, so that my house may
be filled. For I tell you that none of these men who were invited
shall taste of my banquet.'"
COUNTING THE COST
crowds were on the way with Jesus. He turned and said to them, "If
any man comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, and
wife and children, and brothers and sisters, and even his own life
too, he cannot be my disciple. Whoever does not carry his cross
and come after me cannot be my disciple. Which of you, if he wishes
to build a tower, does not first sit down and reckon up the expense,
to see whether he has enough to finish it? This he does lest, when
he has laid the foundation and is unable to complete the work, all
who see him begin to mock him, saying, 'This man began to build
and was unable to finish the job.' Or, what king when he is going
to engage battle with another king, does not first sit down and
take counsel, whether he is able with ten thousand men to meet him
who comes against him with twenty thousand? If he finds he cannot,
while he is still distant, he sends an embassy and asks for terms
of peace. So, therefore, everyone of you who does not bid farewell
to all his possessions cannot be my disciple."
said, "Salt is a fine thing; but if salt has become insipid, by
what means shall its taste be restored? It is fit neither for the
land nor the dunghill. Men throw it out. He who has an ear to hear,
let him hear."
turn to chapters fifteen and sixteen