Thirdmill Study Bible

Notes on Luke 6:22-36

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Luke 6:22-23

These final verses emphasize the hopeful nature of the beatitude (blessed) statements to those who are politically and spiritually oppressed. Just as Jesus himself was opposed, so people would hate, exclude, and insult his disciples (10:16; John 15:8; Acts 3–4; 7; 21–28). Such rejection because of Jesus brings blessing from God; he has not forgotten his people in such times (Jam. 2:7; 1 Pet. 4:14-15). Knowing this allows one to rejoice now for a great reward awaits them in heaven (Acts 5:41; 16:25; 21:13). Moreover, it is sadly normal for God's righteous people to suffer abuse at the hands of the wicked. Even the prophets of Israel were treated that way (see 1 Kgs. 18:4, 13; 22:27; 2 Chron. 16:10; 24:20-21; Neh. 9:26; Jer. 2:30; 11:18-22; 37:15-16).

Luke 6:24

woe. See note on 6:20-26. rich. Wealth is not naturally wrong, nor are all who are wealthy sinful. The problem comes when wealth disguises spiritual poverty, a hindrance to saving faith (12:13-21; 16:14, 19-31; 18:18-30; Matt. 19:23-24). Such persons find their comfort in what they have now, rather than in God's future reward. One notable example of one who was wealthy and godly is Joseph of Arimathea (23:50; Matt 27:57).

Luke 6:25

Those who are full now, having found satisfaction in the things of this world, will be hungry on the last day (1:53; Isa. 65:13). This hunger is a metaphor for the judgment and their lack of comfort (Isa. 5:22; Amos 8:11). Unlike the godly who will laugh with joy on the last day (v. 21), the laughter of the faithless is one of scoffing and mocking (Gen. 17:17; 18:12-15; Mark 5:40; Jam. 4:9). The wicked will later mourn and weep under God's just judgment.

Luke 6:26

Unlike the true prophets who were mistreated (v. 23), the false prophets were well-liked. They pandered to the people and spoke peace when they should have warned of judgment (Isa. 30:9-11; Jer. 5:31; 23:16-22; Mic. 2:11). Likewise, if all people speak well of someone, it likely means they are not living as God desires (Jam. 4:4).

Luke 6:27-36

Jesus presented a radical standard for his disciples. This was especially clear in his call to love one's enemies. Though some try to reduce Christian love to a single word (agape), the totality of the Bible's teaching will not allow this. Different words are used to describe divine (John 5:20; 11:3; 16:27) and Christian love (John 21:17; Tit. 3:15). Moreover, not all love is positive, a common word for love describes love for sinful things (2 Sam. 13:1, 4, 15; 2 Tim. 2:14). Christian love is rightly defined by sacrificial action (Eph. 5:25) and gracious affection (1 Cor. 13:1-8). Jesus details practical and challenging examples of such love in these verses.

Luke 6:27

love your enemies. There was a tradition among the Jews that said love your neighbors and hate your enemies (Matt. 5:43). Jesus pushed against that, making clear the high standard of love he expected of his disciples. This went beyond similar teachings in the Old Testament (Exod. 23:4-5; Prov. 17:5; 24:17; 25:21-22; Job 31:29-34). do good. Jesus did not leave his command to love enemies as something vague. He gave specific directions about how to obey it. Christian love is active in doing good, even toward those who show hatred.

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