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Luke 23:50-53

Context
Jesus’ Burial

23:50 Now 1  there was a man named Joseph who was a member of the council, 2  a good and righteous man. 23:51 (He 3  had not consented 4  to their plan and action.) He 5  was from the Judean town 6  of Arimathea, and was looking forward to 7  the kingdom of God. 8  23:52 He went to Pilate and asked for the body 9  of Jesus. 23:53 Then 10  he took it down, wrapped it in a linen cloth, 11  and placed it 12  in a tomb cut out of the rock, 13  where no one had yet been buried. 14 

1 tn Grk “And behold.” Here καί (kai) has been translated as “now” to indicate the transition to a new topic. The Greek word ἰδού (idou) at the beginning of this statement has not been translated because it has no exact English equivalent here, but adds interest and emphasis (BDAG 468 s.v. 1).

2 tn Grk “a councillor” (as a member of the Sanhedrin, see L&N 11.85). This indicates that some individuals among the leaders did respond to Jesus.

3 tn Grk “This one.” Because of the length and complexity of the Greek sentence, a new sentence was started in the translation at this point.

4 tc Several mss (א C D L Δ Ψ 070 Ë1,13 [579] 892 1424 2542 al) read the present participle συγκατατιθέμενος (sunkatatiqemeno") instead of the perfect participle συγκατατεθειμένος (sunkatateqeimeno"). The present participle could be taken to mean that Joseph had decided that the execution was now a mistake. The perfect means that he did not agree with it from the start. The perfect participle, however, has better support externally (Ì75 A B W Θ 33 Ï), and is thus the preferred reading.

sn The parenthetical note at the beginning of v. 51 indicates that Joseph of Arimathea had not consented to the action of the Sanhedrin in condemning Jesus to death. Since Mark 14:64 indicates that all the council members condemned Jesus as deserving death, it is likely that Joseph was not present at the trial.

5 tn Because of the length and complexity of the Greek sentence, a new sentence was started in the translation at this point.

6 tn Or “Judean city”; Grk “from Arimathea, a city of the Jews.” Here the expression “of the Jews” (᾿Iουδαίων, Ioudaiwn) is used in an adjectival sense to specify a location (cf. BDAG 478 s.v. ᾿Iουδαῖος 2.c) and so has been translated “Judean.”

7 tn Or “waiting for.”

8 sn Though some dispute that Joseph of Arimathea was a disciple of Jesus, this remark that he was looking forward to the kingdom of God, the affirmation of his character at the end of v. 50, and his actions regarding Jesus’ burial all suggest otherwise.

9 sn Joseph went to Pilate and asked for the body because he sought to give Jesus an honorable burial. This was indeed a bold move on the part of Joseph of Arimathea, for it clearly and openly identified him with a man who had just been condemned and executed, namely, Jesus. His faith is exemplary, especially for someone who was a member of the council that handed Jesus over for crucifixion (cf. Mark 15:43).

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

11 tn The term σινδών (sindwn) can refer to a linen cloth used either for clothing or for burial.

12 tn In the Greek text this pronoun (αὐτόν, auton) is masculine, while the previous one (αὐτό, auto) is neuter, referring to the body.

13 tn That is, cut or carved into an outcropping of natural rock, resulting in a cave-like structure (see L&N 19.26).

14 tc Codex Bezae (D), with some support from 070, one Itala ms, and the Sahidic version, adds the words, “And after he [Jesus] was laid [in the tomb], he [Joseph of Arimathea] put a stone over the tomb which scarcely twenty men could roll.” Although this addition is certainly not part of the original text of Luke, it does show how interested the early scribes were in the details of the burial and may even reflect a very primitive tradition. Matt 27:60 and Mark 15:46 record the positioning of a large stone at the door of the tomb.

tn Or “laid to rest.”



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