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Luke 13:22-30

Context
The Narrow Door

13:22 Then 1  Jesus 2  traveled throughout 3  towns 4  and villages, teaching and making his way toward 5  Jerusalem. 6  13:23 Someone 7  asked 8  him, “Lord, will only a few 9  be saved?” So 10  he said to them, 13:24 “Exert every effort 11  to enter through the narrow door, because many, I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able to. 13:25 Once 12  the head of the house 13  gets up 14  and shuts the door, then you will stand outside and start to knock on the door and beg him, ‘Lord, 15  let us in!’ 16  But he will answer you, 17  ‘I don’t know where you come from.’ 18  13:26 Then you will begin to say, ‘We ate and drank in your presence, and you taught in our streets.’ 19  13:27 But 20  he will reply, 21  ‘I don’t know where you come from! 22  Go away from me, all you evildoers!’ 23  13:28 There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth 24  when you see Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, 25  and all the prophets in the kingdom of God 26  but you yourselves thrown out. 27  13:29 Then 28  people 29  will come from east and west, and from north and south, and take their places at the banquet table 30  in the kingdom of God. 31  13:30 But 32  indeed, 33  some are last 34  who will be first, and some are first who will be last.”

1 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “then” to indicate the implied sequence of events within the narrative.

2 tn Grk “he”; the referent (Jesus) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

3 tn This is a distributive use of κατά (kata); see L&N 83:12.

4 tn Or “cities.”

5 tn Grk “making his journey toward.” This is the first of several travel notes in Luke’s Jerusalem journey section of Luke 9-19; other notes appear at 17:11; 18:31; 19:28, 41.

6 map For location see Map5 B1; Map6 F3; Map7 E2; Map8 F2; Map10 B3; JP1 F4; JP2 F4; JP3 F4; JP4 F4.

7 tn Here δέ (de) has not been translated.

8 tn Grk “said to.”

9 sn The warnings earlier in Jesus’ teaching have led to the question whether only a few will be saved.

10 tn Here δέ (de) has been translated as “so” to indicate that Jesus’ reply was triggered by the preceding question.

11 tn Or “Make every effort” (L&N 68.74; cf. NIV); “Do your best” (TEV); “Work hard” (NLT); Grk “Struggle.” The idea is to exert one’s maximum effort (cf. BDAG 17 s.v. ἀγωνίζομαι 2.b, “strain every nerve to enter”) because of the supreme importance of attaining entry into the kingdom of God.

12 tn The syntactical relationship between vv. 24-25 is disputed. The question turns on whether v. 25 is connected to v. 24 or not. A lack of a clear connective makes an independent idea more likely. However, one must then determine what the beginning of the sentence connects to. Though it makes for slightly awkward English, the translation has opted to connect it to “he will answer” so that this functions, in effect, as an apodosis. One could end the sentence after “us” and begin a new sentence with “He will answer” to make simpler sentences, although the connection between the two sentences is thereby less clear. The point of the passage, however, is clear. Once the door is shut, because one failed to come in through the narrow way, it is closed permanently. The moral: Do not be too late in deciding to respond.

13 tn Or “the master of the household.”

14 tn Or “rises,” or “stands up.”

15 tn Or “Sir.”

16 tn Grk “Open to us.”

17 tn Grk “and answering, he will say to you.” This is redundant in contemporary English and has been simplified to “he will answer you.”

18 sn For the imagery behind the statement “I do not know where you come from,” see Ps 138:6; Isa 63:16; Jer 1:5; Hos 5:3.

19 sn This term refers to wide streets, and thus suggests the major streets of a city.

20 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “but” to indicate the contrast present in this context.

21 tc Most mss (Ì75* A D L W Θ Ψ 070 Ë1,13 Ï) have ἐρεῖ λέγω ὑμῖν (erei legw Jumin; “he will say, ‘I say to you’”) here, while some have only ἐρεῖ ὑμῖν (“he will say to you” in א 579 pc lat sa) or simply ἐρεῖ (“he will say” in 1195 pc). The variety of readings seems to have arisen from the somewhat unusual wording of the original, ἐρεῖ λέγων ὑμῖν (erei legwn Jumin; “he will say, saying to you” found in Ì75c B 892 pc). Given the indicative λέγω, it is difficult to explain how the other readings would have arisen. But if the participle λέγων were original, the other readings can more easily be explained as arising from it. Although the external evidence is significantly stronger in support of the indicative reading, the internal evidence is on the side of the participle.

tn Grk “he will say, saying to you.” The participle λέγων (legwn) and its indirect object ὑμῖν (Jumin) are redundant in contemporary English and have not been translated.

22 sn The issue is not familiarity (with Jesus’ teaching) or even shared activity (eating and drinking with him), but knowing Jesus. Those who do not know him, he will not know where they come from (i.e., will not acknowledge) at the judgment.

23 tn Grk “all you workers of iniquity.” The phrase resembles Ps 6:8.

24 sn Weeping and gnashing of teeth is a figure for remorse and trauma, which occurs here because of exclusion from God’s promise.

25 tn Grk “and Isaac and Jacob,” but 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.

26 sn The kingdom of God is a major theme of Jesus. It is a realm in which Jesus rules and to which those who trust him belong. See Luke 6:20; 11:20; 17:20-21.

27 tn Or “being thrown out.” The present accusative participle, ἐκβαλλομένους (ekballomenous), related to the object ὑμᾶς (Jumas), seems to suggest that these evildoers will witness their own expulsion from the kingdom.

28 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “then” to indicate the implied sequence of events in the discourse.

29 tn Grk “they”; the referent (people who will come to participate in the kingdom) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

30 tn Grk “and recline 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. The word “banquet” has been supplied to clarify for the modern reader the festive nature of the imagery The banquet imagery is a way to describe the fellowship and celebration of accompanying those who are included as the people of God at the end.

31 sn The kingdom of God is a major theme of Jesus. It is a realm in which Jesus rules and to which those who trust him belong. See Luke 6:20; 11:20; 17:20-21.

32 tn Here καί (kai) has been translated as “but” to indicate the contrast present in this context.

33 tn Grk “behold.”

34 sn Some are last who will be first, and some are first who will be last. Jesus’ answer is that some who are expected to be there (many from Israel) will not be there, while others not expected to be present (from other nations) will be present. The question is not, “Will the saved be few?” (see v. 23), but “Will it be you?”



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