Thirdmill Study Bible

Notes on Luke 11:41-52

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Luke 11:41

clean. Acceptable to God, when offered with pure hearts (see 19:8).

Luke 11:42

woe. See notes on 6:20-26. tithe. The Old Testament law commanded all people to give a tenth of what they owned to God in a tithe (Num. 18:21-24). The Pharisees went beyond what was required. neglect. The Pharisees were very careful to obey some particulars of the law but missed the main point. They failed to act justly toward their neighbor (Isa. 1:17; Mark 7:9-13) and love God with all their heart (Deut. 6:4-5).

Luke 11:43

Woe. See notes on 6:20-26. front seats . . . greetings. The Pharisees enjoyed having reputations of godliness. But they failed to seek God and cultivate true godliness.

Luke 11:44

Woe. See notes on 6:20-26. unmarked graves. Contact with death made a person ritually unclean under the Old Testament law (Num. 19:16). If a grave was unmarked, someone might walk over it without knowing it. Jesus said the Pharisees were such graves — unknowingly spiritually dead inside and unclean before God.

Luke 11:45

teachers of the law. See note on 5:17.

Luke 11:46

Woe. See notes on 6:20-26. burdens. By adding extra rules and traditions, the teachers of the law, made it hard and miserable to keep God's word. It should have been a joy (Ps. 119:97, 103, 165). Worse, as hypocrites they did not try to keep the burdens themselves.

Luke 11:47-48

Woe. See notes on 6:20-26. prophets. During Jesus' day, teachers went to the traditional burial places of the prophets and built memorials. It was supposed to be a sign of piety. But Jesus showed their hypocrisy. It was easier to pay empty tribute to a dead prophet than to listen to a living one. killed. All throughout biblical history, God's prophets were killed for speaking God's truth. The same spirit of hard-heartedness existed in the teachers of that day. They rejected Jesus, God's perfect prophet (Heb. 1:1). Eventually, they would kill him as well (9:22; 19:47; 22:2; Matt. 20:18).

Luke 11:49

this reason. That is, the sins laid out in vv. 39-48. God's wisdom. Is often contrary to human wisdom (1 Cor. 1:20-25). Though they will suffer, he sent prophets and apostles to preach to his people (1 Thess. 2:15; see Eph. 3:5; 2 Pet. 3:2; Rev. 18:20). These words of God are not quoted from the Old Testament.

Luke 11:50

The rejection of Jesus and his apostles is part of a history of persecution of God's prophets (see note on vv. 47-48). However, this generation's persecution of Jesus is especially wicked as all the prophets pointed to him (24:26-27, 44-47; John 5:39).

Luke 11:51

Abel's blood . . . Zechariah. Adam's son, Abel, was the first person killed for his faith in God (Gen. 4:1-12). According to the Hebrew order of the Old Testament, 2 Chronicles is the final book. There, Zechariah is the last person shown being martyred for his faith in God (2 Chron. 24:20-22). Jesus is saying that from the beginning to end of the Old Testament history, Satan has been at work to stop the plan of God. He did this in many ways, but especially through death (John 8:44).

Luke 11:52

Woe. See notes on 6:20-26. taken away the key. Those who claim to be teachers of the God's Law pervert that teaching. They keep people from understanding as they should. hinder. They claimed to preach a message of salvation but were only blind guides because they had not entered God's salvation themselves. They prevent people from entering the kingdom.

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