But Jesus rebuked the evil spirit and healed the boy. Then He gave him back to his father. Awe gripped the people as they saw this majestic display of God’s power. While everyone was marvelling at everything He was doing, Jesus said to His disciples, “Listen to Me and remember what I say. The Son of Man is going to be betrayed into the hands of His enemies.”Luke 9:43-44
Do you remember my comments in Gem 923 . Luke ends the story in an interesting way. He totally omits the comment “this kind does not go out except by prayer [and fasting].” But rather joins the end of this story with the second prediction of the resurrection which the other two separate off in time. Why does Luke give it immediacy after the demoniac boy story, as though it had happened directly after it? Whereupon Luke follows Mark’s order in adding the dispute over who is the greatest followed by the who-is-not-against-us-is-for-us segment. Then he leaves out the segment about plucking your eye out if it offends you and sundry other elements. After this Luke begins his Greater Interpolation. Jesus starts the journey toward Jerusalem. What unifies all of this together for Luke? Take some time to think about it.
Notice how Matthew and Mark separate the stories in time. Luke is the only one who juxtaposes the stories in the way he does. He makes it sound as though this second statement of his coming death happened on the end of the story of the demoniac boy. But both Matthew and Mark make it clear there was an interval of time in between the close of the Demoniac story and the 2nd allusion to His impending death.
- Luke handling of it states: “while everyone was marveling at all that He was doing, He said to his disciples . . . The Son of Man is going to be delivered into the hands of men.”
- Matthew’s account records: and while they were gathering together in Galilee, Jesus said to them, “The Son of Man is going to be delivered into the hands of men; and they will kill Him, and He will be raised on the third day.”
- Mark states: From there they went out and began to go through Galilee, and He did not want anyone to know about it. For He was teaching His disciples and telling them, “The Son of Man is to be delivered into the hands of men, and they will kill Him; and when He has been killed, He will rise three days later.”
Both Matthew and Mark closed the story with the disciples asking why they couldn’t drive the demon out. Then Jesus makes the statement about prayer and fasting. Luke totally omits this portion. Not only that, he side slips the clarity of the statement of Jesus pending death and resurrection. For Luke the focus is not so much in the statement of Jesus’ pending death but the failure of the disciples to understand. “Let these words sink into your ears . . . they did not understand this statement but were afraid to ask.” Luke omits the pieces in between related to the disciples query about their failure. He only reports their failure and then hastens to add to it the disciples lack of understanding. Following this, Luke places the story of the dispute among the disciples as to which one of them is the greatest. (Luke 9:44-48) Then Luke records the comment: “we told them to stop because they are not part of our group.”
How odd, following the transfiguration and the account of the glory that the disciples experienced, all we have recorded are the disciples foibles one after another. Their lack of understanding concerning His coming death, their in-fighting and squabbles among themselves as to who is most prominent and finally their exclusion of other people who are not part of the in-crowd. Are these the same disciples who saw (or heard about) the glory which descended on Mount Hermon [to go with the traditional assumption] or Mount Carmel to maintain the link with Elijah? It seems unbelievable that they could descend so far so fast. And remember Luke has structured this section so that it is immediate in its time frame.
Certainly Luke’s focus appears to be solely to highlight the disciples’ shortcomings in the light of the glory they received first hand or vicarious through those who saw it (assuming Peter James and John told the others what happen on the mountain. Either way these stories are stacked up to make a point. I would say what is true of the disciples is also true of us too. How quickly we lose sight of the glory and sink back into the mire of the mundane. Guard against it as best you can. Maybe in the light of this link, Peter’s idea of building booths to preserve the glory was not such a bad idea. To highlight this tendency in us Luke leaps from the end of the demoniac story to those listed above and does not daly with the discussion as to why the disciples couldn’t caste out the demon. He is only interested in the fact that they couldn’t, not the whys and wherefores it seems.
When we have nothing left but God, we discover that God is enough.Daniel Sigarlaki
It is not who you were but who you are willing to be that will take you to a better future.Anon
The faults in others that irritate you most are likely what you unconsciously hate most in yourself.Rick Warren
The urge to disgrace anyone never flows from grace. It comes from pride, envy, or hate.Rick Warren
We take ourselves way too seriously, but don’t take God seriously enough.Rick Warren