As the time drew near for Him to ascend to heaven, Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem. He sent messengers ahead to a Samaritan village to prepare for His arrival. But the people of the village did not welcome Jesus because He was on His way to Jerusalem. When James and John saw this, they said to Jesus, “Lord, should we call down fire from heaven to burn them up [as Elijah did]?” But Jesus turned and rebuked them. [And He said, “You don’t realize what your hearts are like.][For the Son of Man has not come to destroy people’s lives, but to save them.”] So they went on to another village. Luke 9:51-56
Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem.
- “Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem.” One translation says “set His face like flint”.
- “A Samaritan village”
- “not welcome . . . because He was on His way to Jerusalem”
- [as Elijah did]* especially interesting in the light of what James and John said.
- [And He said, “You don’t realize what your hearts are like.]*
- [For the Son of Man has not come to destroy people’s lives, but to save them.“]*
There are two very interesting verses which background this story. They are:
And the Lord Jehovah will help Me. On account of this I was not ashamed. On account of this I set My face like flint, and I know that I shall not be ashamed.Isaiah 50:7
This verse is related to the Messiah who would be resolute in the face of opposition and accomplish what He came to do. No wonder Jesus set His face toward Jerusalem, despite knowing what would have happen there. Jesus is simply doing what had been stated of Messiah by Isaiah but in the time of Ahab and the subsequent kings. He would resolutely stand against those who would oppose him and set His face toward that which He knew was His redemptive task to perform. The resolve and willingness He had to carry out the task God had for Him would win the day and enable Him to stand firm against all who opposed Him.
So Elijah went to appear before Ahab. Meanwhile, the famine had become very severe in Samaria.1 Kings 18:2
Well isn’t that interesting, the action surrounding Elijah and the prophets of Baal took place in Samaria. Samaria was one of the chief centres of cultic worship set up in Israel’s past. Jereboam used the golden calves which Aaron made to set up High Places at Dan and Bethel, in Ephraim. Bethel was in Samaria, very close to Mt Gerazim. Ahab’s palace was in Samaria. It is no coincidence that James and John made the comments they did concerning the sons of thunder about calling down fire on them as Elijah did. They are not making a general statement about God bringing judgement on those who don’t not following God’s laws and instructions for worship. In fact James and John are very aware that they are standing in Samaria which was the area where the Elijah incident took place. No wonder they say, “as Elijah did”. [or do they?] They are calling on God’s fire to fall on the very descendants of those on whom it fell in the first place. How fitting that these sons of thunder should want judgement to be visited on these people again.
Clipped from E-Sword for you
The Samaritans occupied the country formerly belonging to the tribe of Ephraim and the half-tribe of Manasseh where the cult centres of worship had been set up under Jereboam. This region was situated between Jerusalem and Galilee; so that in passing from the one to the other, it was a direct course to pass through Samaria. The capital of the country was Samaria, formerly a large and splendid city. It was situated about 15 miles to the northwest of the city of Shechem or Sychar and about 40 miles to the north of Jerusalem. Sychar or Shechem was also a city within the limits of Samaria.
This people was formerly composed of a few of the ten tribes and a mixture of foreigners. When the ten tribes were carried away into captivity to Babylon, the King of Assyria sent people from Cutha, Ava, Hamath, and Sepharvaim to inhabit their country, 2Kings 17:24; Ezra 4:2-11. These people at first worshipped the idols of their own nations; but, being troubled with lions, which had increased greatly while the country remained uninhabited, they supposed it was because they had not honored the God of the country. A Jewish priest was therefore sent to them from Babylon to instruct them in the Jewish religion. They were instructed partially from the books of Moses, but still retained many of their old rites and idolatrous customs, and embraced a religion made up of Judaism and idolatry, 2 Kings 17:26-28.
The basis of dispute between the Jews and the Samaritans were:
- The Jews, after their return from Babylon, set about rebuilding their temple. The Samaritans offered to aid them. The Jews, however, perceiving that it was not from a love of true religion, but that they might obtain a part of the favors granted to the Jews by Cyrus, rejected their offer. The consequence was, that a stage of long and bitter animosity arose between them and the Jews.
- While Nehemiah was engaged in building the walls of Jerusalem, the Samaritans used every art to thwart him in his undertaking, Neh 6:1-14.
- The Samaritans at length obtained leave of the Persian monarch to build a temple for themselves. This was erected on “Mount Gerizim,” and they strenuously contended that that was the place designated by Moses as the place where the nation should worship. Sanballat, the leader of the Samaritans, constituted his son-in-law, Manasses, high priest. The religion of the Samaritans thus became perpetuated, and an irreconcilable hatred arose between them and the Jews.
- Samaria became a place of resort for all the outlaws of Judea. They received willingly all the Jewish criminals and refugees from justice. The violators of the Jewish laws, and those who had been excommunicated, betook themselves for safety to Samaria, and greatly increased their numbers and the hatred which subsisted between the two nations.5. The Samaritans received only the five books of Moses, and rejected the writings of the prophets and all the Jewish traditions. From these causes arose an irreconcilable difference between them, so that the Jews regarded them as the worst of the human race John 8:48, and had no dealings with them, John 4:9.
Well that is a lot to think about. There is also another link that is staring you right in the face which I will deal with next Gem before we put it all together. Are these segments genuine or not?
4. [as Elijah did]*
5. [And He said, “You don’t realize what your hearts are like.]*
6. [For the Son of Man has not come to destroy people’s lives, but to save them.”]*
Here is some help again from E-Sword:
even as Elias did; upon the two captains of fifties, with their fifties, as recorded in 2Ki_1:9 This clause was wanting in a certain copy of Beza’s, and is not in the Vulgate Latin version; but is in other copies and versions, and by all means to be retained.And He said, “You don’t realize what your hearts are like. For the Son of Man has not come to destroy people’s lives, but to save them; so far in this verse, and the latter part of the former verse, are left out in five ancient copies of Beza’s, and in the Ethiopic version, but are in the rest of the Eastern versions, and in other copies, and are rightly retained:
The words, Ye know not of what spirit ye are; for the Son of man is not come to destroy men’s lives, but to save them, are wanting in ABCEGHL, and in many others. Griesbach leaves the latter clause out of the text. It is probable that the most ancient MSS. read the passage thus: But he turned, and rebuked them, and said, Ye know not of what spirit ye are. And they went to another village. See the authorities in Griesbach.
I will explain all this gobble-de-gook in the next Gem. Suffice to say, this is what is available to you from E-Sword addressing the issue as to whether these “missing verses” are genuine or not. But for the moment you need some time to take it all in and draw some conclusions.
We are not human beings having a spiritual experience we are spiritual beings having a human experience.Paul Scanlon
If Jesus calls you a dog, don’t bristle. (Mark 7:27-29) Simply ask for crumbs. And suddenly you have the inheritance of sons.John Piper
You will regret many things in life, but you will NEVER regret being too kind, too fair or too generous!Rick Godwin
When you prioritize the important, other things will fall in place. Do you know what is important?Shelvia Hendoro