Expositor's Greek Testament
LESSON ON PRAYER. DISCOURSES IN SELF-DEFENCE.
And it came to pass, that, as he was praying in a certain place, when he ceased, one of his disciples said unto him, Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.Luke 11:1-13 contain a lesson on prayer, consisting of two parts: first, a form of prayer suggesting the chief objects of desire (Luke 11:1-4); second, an argument enforcing perseverance in prayer (Luke 11:5-13). Whether the whole was spoken at one time or not cannot be ascertained; all one can say is that the instructions are thoroughly coherent and congruous, and might very well have formed a single lesson.
Luke 11:1-4. The Lord’s Prayer with a historical introduction (Matthew 6:7-15).—ἐν τόπῳ τινὶ: neither the place nor the time of this incident is indicated with even approximate exactness. It is simply stated that it happened when Jesus was at a certain place, and when He was praying (προσευχόμενον). Why the narrative comes in here does not clearly appear. I have suggested elsewhere (The Parabolic Teaching of Christ, Preface to the Third Edition) that the parable of the Good Samaritan, the story of Martha and Mary and the Lesson on Prayer form together a group having for their common heading: “at school with Jesus,” exhibiting under three types the scholar’s burden, the Teacher’s meekness, and the rest-bringing lesson, so giving us Lk.’s equivalent for Mt.’s gracious invitation (chap. Luke 11:28-30). I am now inclined to think that Schola Christi might be the heading not merely for these three sections but for the whole division from Luke 9:51 to Luke 18:14, the contents being largely didactic.—τις τ. μαθ.: a later disciple, Meyer thinks, who had not heard the Teaching on the Hill, and who got for answer to his request a repetition of the Lord’s Prayer, given by Mt. as part of the Sermon on the Mount. This conjecture must go for what it is worth.—καθὼς καὶ Ἰωάννης: the fact here stated is not otherwise known: no trace of a Johannine liturgy; but the statement in itself is very credible: prayer like fasting reduced to system in the Baptist’s circle.
And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth.Luke 11:2. λέγετε, say, but not implying obligation to repeat regularly the ipsissima verba. The divergence of Lk.’s form from that of Mt., as given in critical editions of the N. T., is sufficient evidence that the Apostolic Church did not so understand their Lord’s will, and use the prayer bearing His name as a formula. Interpreters are not agreed as to which of the two forms is the more original. For my own part I have little doubt that Lk.’s is secondary and abbreviated from the fuller form of Mt. The very name for God—Father—without any added epithet is sufficient proof of this; for Jesus was wont to address God in fuller terms (vide Luke 10:21), and was not likely to give His disciples a form beginning so abruptly. Lk.’s form as it stands in W.H is as follows:
 Westcott and Hort.
Father! Hallowed be Thy name.
Come Thy kingdom.
The bread of each day give us daily.
And forgive our sins, for we also forgive every one owing us.
And bring us not into temptation.
The third petition: Thy will be done, etc., and the second half of the sixth: but deliver us from evil, are wanting.
Give us day by day our daily bread.Luke 11:3. τὸ καθʼ ἡμέραν, daily, for Mt.’s σήμερον, this day, is an alteration corresponding to the καθʼ ἡμέραν in the Logion concerning cross-bearing (Luke 9:23).—δίδου, for δὸς, is a change necessitated by the other.
And forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil.Luke 11:4. ἁμαρτίας: for Mt.’s ὀφειλήματα, but it is noticeable that the idea of sins is not introduced into the second clause. Lk. avoids making our forgiving and God’s parallel: we forgive debts, God sins. Whether the debts are viewed as moral or as material is not indicated, possibly both.—On the whole, vide Mt.
And he said unto them, Which of you shall have a friend, and shall go unto him at midnight, and say unto him, Friend, lend me three loaves;Luke 11:5-8. The selfish neighbour. This parable and that of the unjust judge (Luke 18:1-8) form a couplet teaching the same lesson with reference to distinct spheres of life or experience: that men ought always to pray, and not grow faint-hearted when the answer to prayer is long delayed. They imply that we have to wait for the fulfilment of spiritual desires, and they teach that it is worth our while to wait: fulfilments will come, God is good to them that wait upon Him.
Luke 11:5. εἶπεν: the story is not called a parable, as the similar one in chap. 18 is, but it is one. God’s ways in the spiritual world are illustrated by men’s ways in everyday life.—τίς ἐξ ὑμῶν, etc.: the whole parable, Luke 11:5-8, is really one long sentence in which accordingly the construction comes to grief, beginning interrogatively (as far as φίλον, Luke 11:5, or παραθήσω αὐτῷ, Luke 11:6) and continuing conditionally, the apodosis beginning with λέγω ὑμῖν, Luke 11:8, and taking the form of an independent sentence.—μεσονυκτίου, at midnight, a poetic word in classic Greek, a prose word in late Greek. Phryn. says: μεσονύκτιον ποιητικόν, οὐ πολιτικόν. In hot climates travelling was largely done during night, therefore the hour was seasonable from the traveller’s point of view, while unseasonable from the point of view of people at home. This is a feature in the felicity of the parable.—χρῆσον, 1st aorist active imperative, from κίχρημι, here only in N. T., to lend.
For a friend of mine in his journey is come to me, and I have nothing to set before him?Luke 11:6. οὐκ ἔχω: this does not necessarily imply poverty: bread for the day was baked every morning. It is rather to be wondered at that a man with a family of children (Luke 11:7) had any over.
And he from within shall answer and say, Trouble me not: the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give thee.Luke 11:7. μή μοι, etc.: similar phrase in Luke 18:5. Cf. Matthew 26:10, Mark 14:6. Here = don’t bother me!—κέκλεισται, has been barred for the night, a thing done and not to be undone for a trifling cause.—εἰς τὴν κοίτην: they have gone to bed and are now sleeping in bed, and he does not want to risk waking them (ἵνα μὴ ἀφυπνίσῃ αὐτά, Euthym.).—οὐ δύναμαι: οὐ θέλω would have been nearer the truth.
I say unto you, Though he will not rise and give him, because he is his friend, yet because of his importunity he will rise and give him as many as he needeth.Luke 11:8. λέγω ὑμῖν: introducing a confident assertion.—διά γε τ. ἀν., yet at least on account of, etc. He may give or not give for friendship’s sake, but he must give for his own sake.—ἀναίδειαν (here only in N.T.), the total disregard of domestic privacy and comfort shown by persistent knocking; very indecent from the point of view of the man in bed (ἀναίδειαν = τὴν ἐπιμονὴν τῆς αἰτήσεως, Euthym.).
And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.Luke 11:9-13. The moral of the story (cf. Matthew 7:7-11).—κἀγὼ ὑμῖν, etc., and I (the same speaker as in Luke 11:8) say to you, with equal confidence. What Jesus says is in brief: you also will get what you want from God, as certainly as the man in my tale got what he wanted; therefore pray on, imitating his ἀναίδεια. The selfish neighbour represents God as He seems, and persistent prayer looks like a shameless disregard of His apparent indifference.
Luke 11:9-10 correspond almost exactly with Matthew 7:7-8. Vide notes there.
For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.
If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if he ask a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent?Luke 11:11. τίνα δὲ: δὲ introduces a new parabolic saying: which of you, as a father, shall his son ask? etc. In the T.R. Lk. gives three examples of possible requests—Mt.’s two: a loaf, and a fish, and a third, an egg. Cod. B omits the first (W.H put it on the margin).—ᾠόν, σκορπίον: in the two first instances there is resemblance between the thing asked and supposed to be given: loaf and stone, fish and serpent; in Lk.’s third instance also, the σκορπίος being a little round lobster-like animal, lurking in stone walls, with a sting in its tail. The gift of things similar but so different would be cruel mockery of which almost no father would be capable. Hens were not known in ancient Israel. Probably the Jews brought them from Babylon, after which eggs would form part of ordinary food (Benziger, Heb. Arch., p. 94).
 Westcott and Hort.
Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion?
If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?Luke 11:13. ὁ π. ὁ ἐξ οὐρανοῦ, this epithet is attached to πατὴρ here though not in the Lord’s Prayer.—Πνεῦμα Ἅγιον instead of Mt.’s ἀγαθὰ. The Holy Spirit is mentioned here as the summum donum, and the supreme object of desire for all true disciples. In some forms of the Lord’s Prayer (Marcion, Greg. Nys.) a petition for the gift of the Holy Spirit took the place of the first or second petition.
And he was casting out a devil, and it was dumb. And it came to pass, when the devil was gone out, the dumb spake; and the people wondered.Luke 11:14-16. Brief historical statement introducing certain defensive utterances of Jesus.
Luke 11:14-15 answer to Matthew 9:33-34; Matthew 12:22-24, and Luke 11:16 to Matthew 12:38. The reproduction of these passages here is very summary: the reference to Israel, Matthew 9:33, and the question “is not this the Son of David?” Luke 12:23, e.g., being omitted. Then, further, it is noticeable that the references to the Pharisees and scribes, as the authors of the malignant theory as to Christ’s cure of demoniacs and the persons who demanded a sign, are eliminated, the vague terms τινὲς (Luke 11:15) and ἕτεροι (Luke 11:16) being substituted. The historical situation in which Jesus spoke is wiped out, the writer caring only for what He said.
But some of them said, He casteth out devils through Beelzebub the chief of the devils.
And others, tempting him, sought of him a sign from heaven.
But he, knowing their thoughts, said unto them, Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and a house divided against a house falleth.Luke 11:17-23. The Beelzebub theory (Matthew 12:25-30, Mark 3:23-27).
Luke 11:17. διαμερισθεῖσα. Lk. has a preference for compounds; μερισθεῖσα in Mt.—καὶ οἶκος ἐπὶ οἶκον πίπτει, and house falls against house, one tumbling house knocking down its neighbour, a graphic picture of what happens when a kingdom is divided against itself. In Mt. kingdom and city are two co-ordinate illustrations of the principle. In Mk. a house takes the place of Mt.’s city. In Lk. the house is simply a feature in the picture of a kingdom ruined by self-division. Some (e.g., Bornemann and Hahn) render Lk.’s phrase: house upon house, one house after another falls. Others, in a harmonistic interest, interpret: a house being divided (διαμερισθεὶς understood) against itself (ἐπὶ οἶκον = ἐφʼ ἑαυτὸν) falls.
If Satan also be divided against himself, how shall his kingdom stand? because ye say that I cast out devils through Beelzebub.
And if I by Beelzebub cast out devils, by whom do your sons cast them out? therefore shall they be your judges.
But if I with the finger of God cast out devils, no doubt the kingdom of God is come upon you.Luke 11:20. ἐν δακτύλῳ Θεοῦ: instead of Mt.’s ἐν πνεύματι Θεοῦ, which is doubtless the original expression, being more appropriate to the connection of thought. Lk.’s expression emphasises the immediateness of the Divine action through Jesus, in accordance with his habit of giving prominence to the miraculousness of Christ’s healing acts. But the question was not as to the fact, but as to the moral quality of the miracle. The phrase recalls Exodus 8:9.—ἔφθασεν: φθάνω in classics means to anticipate, in later Greek to reach, the idea of priority being dropped out.
When a strong man armed keepeth his palace, his goods are in peace:Luke 11:21. ὅταν: introducing the parable of the strong man subdued by a stronger, symbolising the true state of the case as between Beelzebub and Jesus, probably more original in Lk. than in Mt. (Matthew 12:29).—καθωπλισμένος, fully armed, here only, in N.T.—αὐλήν, court, whose entrance is guarded, according to some; house, castle, or palace according to others (οἰκίαν in Mt.).
But when a stronger than he shall come upon him, and overcome him, he taketh from him all his armour wherein he trusted, and divideth his spoils.Luke 11:22. πανοπλίαν, panoply, a Pauline word (Ephesians 6:11; Ephesians 6:13).—διαδίδωσιν, distributes the spoils among his friends with the generosity and the display of victory, referring probably to the extensive scale of Christ’s healing ministry among demoniacs.
He that is not with me is against me: and he that gathereth not with me scattereth.Luke 11:23 = Matthew 12:30.
When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest; and finding none, he saith, I will return unto my house whence I came out.Luke 11:24-26. The parable of the unclean spirit cast out and returning: given by Mt. in connection with the demand for a sign (Luke 12:43 ff.). Lk.’s version differs from Mt.’s chiefly in minute literary variations. Two omissions are noticeable: (1) the epithet σχολάζοντα in the description of the deserted house (a probable omission, the word bracketed in W. and H), (2) the closing phrase of Mt.’s version: οὕτως ἔσται καὶ τῇ γενεᾷ τ. τ. πονηρᾷ. On the import of the parable vide on Mt., ad loc.
 Westcott and Hort.
And when he cometh, he findeth it swept and garnished.
Then goeth he, and taketh to him seven other spirits more wicked than himself; and they enter in, and dwell there: and the last state of that man is worse than the first.
And it came to pass, as he spake these things, a certain woman of the company lifted up her voice, and said unto him, Blessed is the womb that bare thee, and the paps which thou hast sucked.Luke 11:27-28. The woman in the crowd. In Lk. only, though reminding one of Matthew 12:46-50, Mark 3:32-35. It reports an honest matron’s blessing on the, to her probably unknown, mother of Jesus, who in this case, as in an earlier instance (Luke 8:19-21), treats the felicity of natural motherhood as entirely subordinate to that of disciplehood.
Luke 11:27. κοιλία, μαστοὶ: “Mulier bene sentit sed muliebriter loquitur” (Bengel).
But he said, Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it.Luke 11:28. μενοῦν might be confirmatory (utique) or corrective (imo vero), or a little of both; the tone of voice would show which of the two the speaker meant to be the more prominent. Correction probably was uppermost in Christ’s thoughts. Under the appearance of approval the woman was taught that she was mistaken in thinking that merely to be the mother of an illustrious son constituted felicity (Schanz). Viger (Ed. Hermann), p. 541, quotes this text as illustrating the use of μενοῦν in the sense of imo vero, rendering: “Quin imo, vel imo vero, beati qui audiunt verbum Dei”. Its position at the beginning of the sentence is contrary to Attic use: “reperitur apud solos Scriptores Macedonicos,” Sturz, De Dial. Mac. el Alex., p. 203.—τὸν λόγον τ. Θ., those who hear and keep the word of God, the truly blessed. Cf. “His word” in Luke 10:39; an established phrase.
And when the people were gathered thick together, he began to say, This is an evil generation: they seek a sign; and there shall no sign be given it, but the sign of Jonas the prophet.Luke 11:29-32. The sign of Jonah (Matthew 12:38-42).—Τ. ὄ. ἐπαθροιζομένων, the crowds thronging to Him. The heading for the following discourse has been anticipated in Luke 11:16; ἕτεροι πειράζοντες, instead of Mt.’s scribes and Pharisees, asking a sign. In Lk.’s narrative Jesus answers their question in presence of a gathering crowd supposed to be referred to in the expression ἡ γενεὰ αὕτη. ἐπαθροίζω occurs here only in N.T.—ἡ γενεὰ αὕτη, etc., this generation is an evil generation; said in reference to the crowd supposed to sympathise with and share the religious characteristics of their leaders. The epithet μοιχαλὶς (Matthew 12:39) is omitted as liable to be misunderstood by non-Hebrew readers.
For as Jonas was a sign unto the Ninevites, so shall also the Son of man be to this generation.Luke 11:30. The sign of Jonah is not further explained as in Mt. (Matthew 12:40), and it might seem that the meaning intended was that Jonah, as a prophet and through his preaching, was a sign to the Ninevites, and that in like manner so was Jesus to His generation. But in reference to Jesus Lk. does not say “is” but “shall be,” ἔσται, as if something else than Christ’s ministry, something future in His experience, was the sign. Something is obscurely hinted at which is not further explained, as if to say: wait and you will get your sign.
The queen of the south shall rise up in the judgment with the men of this generation, and condemn them: for she came from the utmost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and, behold, a greater than Solomon is here.Luke 11:31-32 = Matthew 12:41; Matthew 12:22, only that the men of Nineveh and the Queen of Sheba change places. Mt.’s order seems the more natural, the discourse so passing from the sign of Jonah to the Ninevites, who had the benefit of it.
The men of Nineve shall rise up in the judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: for they repented at the preaching of Jonas; and, behold, a greater than Jonas is here.
No man, when he hath lighted a candle, putteth it in a secret place, neither under a bushel, but on a candlestick, that they which come in may see the light.Luke 11:33-36 contain parabolic utterances concerning the placing of a light, and the conditions under which the eye sees the light.
Luke 11:33 repeats Luke 8:16 in slightly varied language, and Luke 11:34-36 reproduce what Mt. gives in his version of the Sermon on the Mount (Luke 6:22-23). The connection with what goes before is not apparent.
Luke 11:33. κρύπτην, a hidden place: crypt, vault, cellar, or press, to put a lamp in which is to make it useless.
The light of the body is the eye: therefore when thine eye is single, thy whole body also is full of light; but when thine eye is evil, thy body also is full of darkness.Luke 11:34. ὁ λύχνος, etc., the lamp of the body is thine eye. This thought in connection with the foregoing one might lead us to expect some remark on the proper placing of the body’s lamp, but the discourse proceeds to speak of the single (ἁπλοῦς) and the evil (πονηρὸς) eye. The connection lies in the effects of these qualities. The single eye, like a properly placed lamp, gives light; the evil eye, like a lamp under a bushel, leaves one in darkness. On these attributes of the eye vide remarks on Matthew 6:22-23.
Take heed therefore that the light which is in thee be not darkness.Luke 11:35. A counsel to take care lest the light in us become darkness, answering to that suggested in the parable: see that the lamp be properly placed.
If thy whole body therefore be full of light, having no part dark, the whole shall be full of light, as when the bright shining of a candle doth give thee light.Luke 11:36. This verse is very puzzling both critically and exegetically. As it stands in T.R. (and in W.H) it appears tautological (De Wette), a fault which some have tried to surmount by punctuation, and some by properly placed emphasis—on ὅλον in the protasis and on φωτεινόν in the apodosis, giving this sense: if thy body be wholly lighted, having no part dark, then will it be lighted indeed, as when the lamp with its lightning illumines thee (so Meyer). Even thus the saying seems unsatisfactory, and hardly such as Lk., not to say our Lord, could have been responsible for. The critical question thus forces itself upon us: is this really what Lk. wrote? Westcott and Hort think the passage contains “a primitive corruption,” an opinion which J. Weiss (in Meyer, p. 476, note) endorses, making at the same time an attempt to restore the true text. Such attempts are purely conjectural. The verse is omitted in , some Latin codd., and in Syr. Cur The new Syr. Sin has it in a form which Mrs. Lewis thus renders: “Therefore also thy body, when there is in it no lamp that hath shone, is dark, thus while thy lamp is shining, it gives light to thee”—a sentence as dark as a lampless body.
 Westcott and Hort.
 Codex Bezae
yr. Cur. Curetonian Syriac. (For Greek equivalent vide Baethgen’s Evangelienfragmente.)
yr. Sin. Sinaitic Syriac (recently discovered).
And as he spake, a certain Pharisee besought him to dine with him: and he went in, and sat down to meat.Luke 11:37-54. In the house of a Pharisee; criticism of the religion of Pharisees and scribes (Matthew 23). This section contains a selection of the hard sayings of Jesus on the “righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees,” given with much greater fulness in Mt.’s great antipharisaic discourse, the severity of the attack being further mitigated by the words being thrown into the form of table talk. This is the second time Jesus appears as a guest in a Pharisee’s house in this gospel, speaking His mind with all due freedom but without breach of the courtesies of life. The effect and probable aim of these representations is to show that if it ultimately came to an open rupture between Jesus and the Pharisees it was their fault, not His.
Luke 11:37. ἐν τῷ λαλῆσαι, while He was speaking, as if it had been ἐ. τ. λαλεῖν. ἐν goes most naturally with the present infinitive, but Lk., who uses ἐν with infinitive much more frequently than any other N.T. writer, has ἐν with the aorist nine times. Vide Burton (M. and T., § 109), who remarks in reference to such cases: “The preposition does not seem necessarily to denote exact coincidence (of time), but in no case expresses antecedence. In 1 Corinthians 11:21 and Hebrews 3:12 the action of the infinitive cannot be antecedent to that of the principal verb.”—ἀριστήσῃ: the meal was breakfast rather than dinner.
And when the Pharisee saw it, he marvelled that he had not first washed before dinner.Luke 11:38. ἐθαύμασεν: the cause of wonder was that Jesus did not wash (ἐβαπτίσθη) before eating. We have here Lk.’s equivalent for the incident in Matthew 15:1 ff., Mark 7:1 ff., omitted by him. But the secondary character of Lk.’s narrative appears from this, that the ensuing discourse does not, as in Mt. and Mk., keep to the point in hand—neglect of ritual ablutions, but expatiates on Pharisaic vices generally.
And the Lord said unto him, Now do ye Pharisees make clean the outside of the cup and the platter; but your inward part is full of ravening and wickedness.Luke 11:39. ὁ Κύριος, once more this title in narrative.—νῦν: variously taken as = igitur or = ecce, or as a strictly temporal particle = now “a silent contrast with a better πάλαι” (Meyer). Hahn affirms that νῦν at the beginning of a sentence can mean nothing else than “now”. But Raphel, in support of the second of the above senses (“admirationem quandam declarat”), quotes from Arrian νῦν δύναταί τις ὠφελῆσαι καὶ ἄλλους, μὴ αὐτὸς ὠφελημένος (Epict., lib. iii., cap. 23, 1). Bengel cites 2 Kings 7:6, Sept, where νῦν in the first position is the equivalent for הִנֵּה (vide Sweet’s edition). Lo! ecce! seems best to suit the situation, which demands a lively emotional word. Godet happily renders: “Vous voilà bien! Je vous prends sur le fait.”—πίνακος for Mt.’s παροψίδος (Luke 23:25).—τὸ ἔσωθεν ὑμῶν, your inside, instead of the inside of the dishes in Mt. The idea is that the food they take into their bodies is the product of plunder and wickedness (πονηρίας = ἀκρασίας, Mt.).
Ye fools, did not he that made that which is without make that which is within also?Luke 11:40. ἄφρονες, stupid men! not so strong a word as μωροὶ (Matthew 23:17).—οὐχ ὁ ποιήσας, etc.: either a question or an assertion. As an assertion = he that makes the outside (as it should be) does not thereby also make the inside: it is one thing to cleanse the outside, another, etc. On this view ποιήσας has a pregnant sense = purgare, which Kypke and others (Bornemann dissenting) claim for it in this place. As a question the reference will be to God, and the sense: did not the Maker of the world make the inside of things as well as the outside? Why therefore lay so exclusive stress on the latter? The outside and inside are variously taken as body and spirit (Theophy., Euthy., etc.), vessel and contents (Wolf, Hofmann), vessel and human spirit (Bengel).
But rather give alms of such things as ye have; and, behold, all things are clean unto you.Luke 11:41. πλὴν, rather (instead of devoting such attention to the outside).—τὰ ἐνόντα, etc., give, as alms, the things within the dishes. Others render as if the phrase were κατὰ τ. ἐν.: according to your ability (Pricaeus, Grotius, etc.).
But woe unto you, Pharisees! for ye tithe mint and rue and all manner of herbs, and pass over judgment and the love of God: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.Luke 11:42-44. To this criticism of the externalism of the Pharisees, the only thing strictly relevant to the situation as described, are appended three of Mt.’s “woes” directed against their will-worship in tithing (Matthew 23:23), their love of prominence (Matthew 23:6, not formally put as a “woe”), and their hypocrisy (Matthew 23:27).—πήγανον, rue, instead of Mt.’s ἄνηθον, anise, here only in N.T.—πᾶν λάχανον, every herb, general statement, instead of Mt.’s third sample, κύμινον.—τὴν ἀγάπην τ. Θ., the love of God, instead of Mt.’s mercy and faith.
Woe unto you, Pharisees! for ye love the uppermost seats in the synagogues, and greetings in the markets.Luke 11:43. Pharisaic ostentation is very gently dealt with here compared with the vivid picture in Matthew 23:5-7, partly out of regard to the restraint imposed by the supposed situation, Jesus a guest, partly because some of the details (phylacteries, e.g.) lacked interest for Gentile readers.
Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are as graves which appear not, and the men that walk over them are not aware of them.Luke 11:44. This “woe” is evidently adapted for Gentile use. In Mt. the sepulchres are made conspicuous by white-washing to warn passers-by, and the point is the contrast between the fair exterior and the inner foulness. Here the graves become invisible (ἄδηλα, in this sense here only in N.T.; cf. 1 Corinthians 14:8) and the risk is that of being in the presence of what is offensive without knowing. Farrar (C. G. T.) suggests that the reference may be to Tiberias, which was built on the site of an old cemetery.
Then answered one of the lawyers, and said unto him, Master, thus saying thou reproachest us also.Luke 11:45-52. Castigation of the scribes present; severe, but justified by having been invited.
Luke 11:45. τις τῶν νομικῶν: a professional man, the Pharisees being laymen; the two classes kindred in spirit, hence the lawyer who speaks felt hit.
And he said, Woe unto you also, ye lawyers! for ye lade men with burdens grievous to be borne, and ye yourselves touch not the burdens with one of your fingers.Luke 11:46. Jesus fearlessly proceeds to say what He thinks of the class.—καὶ ὑμῖν, yes! to you lawyers also woes. Three are specified: heavy burdens (Matthew 23:3), tombs of the prophets (Matthew 23:29-31), key of knowledge (Matthew 23:14).—φορτίζετε (with two accusatives only in N.T.), ye lade men with unbearable burdens.—προσψαύετε, ye touch, here only in N.T.
Woe unto you! for ye build the sepulchres of the prophets, and your fathers killed them.Luke 11:47. καὶ οἱ πατέρες ὑ., and your fathers. This reading of   is to be preferred on internal grounds to οἱ δὲ, as implying that the two acts were not contrasted but kindred = they killed, you build, worthy sons of such fathers.
 Codex Sinaiticus (sæc. iv.), now at St. Petersburg, published in facsimile type by its discoverer, Tischendorf, in 1862.
 Codex Ephraemi
Truly ye bear witness that ye allow the deeds of your fathers: for they indeed killed them, and ye build their sepulchres.Luke 11:48 points the moral.—ἄρα: perhaps with Schleiermacher we should write ἆρα, taking what follows as a question.—οἰκοδομεῖτε, ye build, absolutely (without object, vide note 3 above). Tomb-building in honour of dead prophets and killing of living prophets have one root: stupid superstitious reverence for the established order.
Therefore also said the wisdom of God, I will send them prophets and apostles, and some of them they shall slay and persecute:Luke 11:49. ἡ σοφία τ. Θ.: vide notes on Matthew 23:34.—ἀποστόλους, apostles, instead of wise men and scribes in Mt.—ἐκδιώξουσιν, they shall drive out (of the land), in place of Mt.’s σταυρώσετε.
That the blood of all the prophets, which was shed from the foundation of the world, may be required of this generation;Luke 11:50. ἐκζητηθῇ, “a Hellenistic verb used in the sense of the Latin exquiro,” Farrar (C. G. T.).
From the blood of Abel unto the blood of Zacharias, which perished between the altar and the temple: verily I say unto you, It shall be required of this generation.Luke 11:51. τοῦ ἀπολομένου who perished, in place of the harsher whom ye slew of Mt.—τοῦ οἴκου = τοῦ ναοῦ in Mt., the temple.
Woe unto you, lawyers! for ye have taken away the key of knowledge: ye entered not in yourselves, and them that were entering in ye hindered.Luke 11:52. Final woe on the lawyers, a kind of anticlimax. Cf. Mt., where the pathetic apostrophe to Jerusalem follows and concludes the discourse.—τὴν κλεῖδα τῆς γνώσεως, the key which is knowledge (genitive of apposition) admitting to the Kingdom of God. Many take it = the key to knowledge.
And as he said these things unto them, the scribes and the Pharisees began to urge him vehemently, and to provoke him to speak of many things:Luke 11:53. The foregoing discourse, though toned down as compared with Mt., was more than the hearers could stand. The result is a more hostile attitude towards the free-spoken Prophet than the classes concerned have yet shown, at least in the narrative of Lk. They began δεινῶς ἐνέχειν, to be sorely nettled at Him (cf. Mark 6:19). Euthy. gives as equivalents ἐγκοτεῖν, ὀργίζεσθαι. The Vulgate has graviter insistere, to press hard, which A.V and R.V follow. Field (Ot. Nor.) decides for the former sense = the scribes and Pharisees began to be very angry.—ἀποστοματίζειν: Grimm gives three meanings—to speak from memory (ἀπὸ στόματος); to repeat to a pupil that he may commit to memory; to ply with questions so as to entice to offhand answers. In this third sense the word must be taken here as it is by Theophy. (and by Euthy.: ἀπαιτεῖν αὐτοσχεδίους καὶ ἀνεπισκέπτους ἀποκρίσεις ἐρωτημάτων δολερῶν = to seek offhand ill-considered answers to crafty questions).
 Authorised Version.
 Revised Version.
Laying wait for him, and seeking to catch something out of his mouth, that they might accuse him.Luke 11:54 really gives the key to the meaning of ἀποστοματίζειν (here only in N.T.).