Luke 10:21
In that hour Jesus rejoiced in spirit, and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes: even so, Father; for so it seemed good in thy sight.
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(21, 22) in that hour Jesus rejoiced in spirit.—The words that follow are found also in Matthew 11:25-27 (see Notes on those verses), but the opening clause that introduces them is peculiar to St. Luke, and is noticeable as the one instance where the word “rejoiced,” which appears in the Magnificat (Luke 1:47), is used of our Lord’s human feeling of exultation. It indicates what one may call the enthusiasm of spiritual joy more than any other synonym, and conveys the impression that the disciples must have noticed something exceptional in their Lord’s look and manner. The verbal agreement with St. Matthew indicates that both the Evangelists must have drawn from a common source, documentary or oral.

Luke 10:21-24. In that hour Jesus rejoiced — On this occasion Jesus, meditating on the unspeakable wisdom and goodness of the divine dispensations to mankind, felt extraordinary emotions of joy. And said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth — In both of which thy kingdom stands, and that of Satan is to be destroyed; that thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent — Hast suffered them to be hid from those that are wise and prudent in their own eyes, or who really are so with respect to the things of this world; and hast revealed them unto babes — To persons illiterate, and of comparatively weak understanding, but are wise as to the things of God. He rejoiced not in the state of ignorance and darkness, in which the wise and prudent were left, as a punishment of their self-confidence and pride, and in their consequent destruction, but in the display of the riches of God’s grace to others, in such a manner as reserves to him the entire glory of our salvation, and hides pride from man. All things are delivered to me of my Father — He repeats the declaration of his own extensive authority, which he had testified before. See notes on Matthew 11:25-27. And no man knoweth who the Son is — Essentially one with the Father; but the Father — Who sent him, and who only knows his dignity and the mystery of his person. And who the Father is — How great, how wise, how good; but the Son — His essential wisdom and word. And he to whom the Son will reveal him — In pursuance of one very important design of his coming, which was to declare the Father, and communicate the saving knowledge of him to all truly willing and desirous to receive it. And he turned to his disciples, and said privately, &c. — It appears, that when the seventy disciples returned, Jesus was surrounded with a great multitude of people; therefore after he had spoken publicly as above related, to the seventy, he turned himself to all his disciples, and uttered what follows privately, so as not to be heard by the people in general. Blessed are the eyes which see the things which ye see, &c. — The happiness here praised was enjoyed by the seventy, as well as by the twelve, and consequently it was as fit that they should be made sensible of its greatness, as that the twelve should understand it. Besides, this declaration, as well as what was spoken more publicly, was designed to moderate the joy which the seventy had conceived, on finding the devils subject to them. The subjection of the devils to their command was not so great a happiness as their being allowed to hear Christ’s sermons, and to see his miracles. These things show, that what our Lord said privately to his disciples, was said to the seventy as well as to the twelve.

10:17-24 All our victories over Satan, are obtained by power derived from Jesus Christ, and he must have all the praise. But let us beware of spiritual pride, which has been the destruction of many. Our Lord rejoiced at the prospect of the salvation of many souls. It was fit that particular notice should be taken of that hour of joy; there were few such, for He was a man of sorrows: in that hour in which he saw Satan fall, and heard of the good success of his ministers, in that hour he rejoiced. He has ever resisted the proud, and given grace to the humble. The more simply dependent we are on the teaching, help, and blessing of the Son of God, the more we shall know both of the Father and of the Son; the more blessed we shall be in seeing the glory, and hearing the words of the Divine Saviour; and the more useful we shall be made in promoting his cause.See the notes at Matthew 11:25-27. 21, 22. Jesus … said, &c.—The very same sublime words were uttered by our Lord on a former similar occasion (see on [1629]Mt 11:25-27); but (1) There we are merely told that He "answered and said" thus; here, He "rejoiced in spirit and said," &c. (2) There it was merely "at that time" (or season) that He spoke thus, meaning with a general reference to the rejection of His gospel by the self-sufficient; here, "In that hour Jesus said," with express reference probably to the humble class from which He had to draw the Seventy, and the similar class that had chiefly welcomed their message. "Rejoice" is too weak a word. It is "exulted in spirit"—evidently giving visible expression to His unusual emotions; while, at the same time, the words "in spirit" are meant to convey to the reader the depth of them. This is one of those rare cases in which the veil is lifted from off the Redeemer's inner man, that, angel-like, we may "look into it" for a moment (1Pe 1:12). Let us gaze on it with reverential wonder, and as we perceive what it was that produced that mysterious ecstasy, we shall find rising in our hearts a still rapture—"Oh, the depths!"Ver. 21,22. See Poole on "Matthew 11:25", and following verses to, Matthew 11:27, where we met with these words of our Saviour.

In that hour Jesus rejoiced in Spirit,.... In his human soul: his heart was filled with joy, not so much at the success of the seventy disciples, and the subjection of the devils to them, as in the view he had of the spread of the Gospel, and of the revelation and application of the truths of it to multitudes of mean and despicable persons, while it was rejected by the wise and learned; and particularly at the sovereign and distinguishing grace of God towards the elect, whose names are written in heaven; upon the mention of which his soul was so affected, that he broke out in, an exulting strain, into thanksgivings to God, in the following manner,

and said, I thank thee, O Father,.... In three ancient copies of Beza's, and in the Vulgate Latin, Syriac, and Ethiopic versions it is read, "in the Holy Spirit"; and the Persic version reads, "he spake, or confabulated with the Holy Spirit": but the former reading and sense are best. See Gill on Matthew 11:25, Matthew 11:26

{5} In that hour Jesus rejoiced in spirit, and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou hast hid these things from the {h} wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes: even so, Father; for so it seemed good in thy sight.

(5) The Church is contemptible, if we consider its outward appearance, but the wisdom of God is most marvellous in it.

(h) Of this world.

Luke 10:21-22. See on Matthew 11:25-27.[134] Luke places this thanksgiving prayer in immediate chronological connection (in the same hour) with the return of the Seventy. Theophylact says: ὥσπερ πατὴρ ἀγαθὸς παῖδας ἰδὼν κατορθώσαντάς τι, οὕτω καὶ ὁ σωτὴρ ἀγάλλεται, ὅτι τοιούτων ἀγαθῶν ἠξιώθησαν οἱ ἀπόστολοι. Still this chronological position is hardly the historical one. See on Matth.

Τῷ ΠΝΕΎΜΑΤΙ] not the Holy Spirit (see the critical remarks). Comp. Luke 1:47. It is His own πνεῦμα ἁγιωσύνης, Romans 1:4. The opposite of this, ἨΓΑΛΛ. Τ. ΠΝ., occurs in John 11:33.

ΤΑῦΤΑ] finds in Luke its reference in ὍΤΙ ΤᾺ ὈΝΌΜΑΤΑ ὙΜῶΝ Κ.Τ.Λ., Luke 10:20, and is hence to be understood[135] of the knowledge of the life eternal in the kingdom of Messiah (comp. Luke 8:10 : γνῶναι τὰ μυστήρια τῆς βασιλείας).

Luke 10:22. καὶ στραφεὶς κ.τ.λ.] (see the critical remarks). From the prayer to God He turns in the following words to the disciples (the Seventy and the Twelve).

πρὸς τοὺς μαθ.] belongs to στραφείς. Comp. Luke 7:44, Luke 14:25. As to the idea of the πάντα μοι παρεδ., which is not, as with Baur, Schenkel, and others, to be referred merely to the spiritual and moral region, see on Matthew 28:18.

γινώσκει] That the Marcionite reading ἔγνω is the original one, and not a gnostic alteration, is rendered probable by the very ancient date at which it is found (Justin, the Clementines, the Marcosites). Comp. on Matthew 11:27. The gnostic interpretation of ἔγνω, which is contested by the Clementines (Luke 18:13 f.), very easily brought about the change into the present tense. See (after Baur, Hilgenfeld, Semisch, Köstlin, Volkmar) Zeller, Apostelg. p. 13f.

τίς] in respect of His nature, counsel, will, thought, etc. In what way, however, τίς ἐστιν ὁ πατήρ is said to be gnostic rather than biblical (Köstlin, p. 161) it is not easy to see. The Father who has sent the Son has His perfect revelation for the first time in Him. Comp. John 14:9.

ᾧ ἐὰν βούλ.] Comp. concerning the Spirit, 1 Corinthians 12:11. This will of the Son, however, in virtue of His essential and moral unity with the Father, is no other than the Father’s will, which the Son has to fulfil. Comp. Gess, Pers. Chr. p. 18 f. Observe, again, that the negation, which is not to be relatively explained away, οὐδεὶςεἰ μή, establishes a relation of a unique kind, namely, that of the metaphysical fellowship.

[134] Keim, Geschichtl. Christus, p. 51, sees here the climax reached of the consciousness of the divine Sonship, and that hence there now appears, instead of the “your Father,” as hitherto, the designation “my Father.” But on the one hand “your Father” is still said at the same time and later (Luke 12:30; Luke 12:32; Matthew 10:20; Matthew 18:14; Matthew 23:9), and on the other Jesus, not to mention Luke 2:49, says “my Father” even as early as in the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 7:21). Baur, indeed (Neutest. Theol. p. 86), knows no other way of getting rid of the offence which this expression of Matthew 7:21 gives him than by attributing the words to a later period of the ministry of Jesus. It is easy in this way to set aside what will not fit into our notions.

[135] Not, of the power over the demons, as Wittichen, d. Idee Gottes als des Vaters, 1865, p. 30, wishes to hare it. To that also belongs πάντα, ver. 22.

Luke 10:21-24. The exultation of Jesus (Matthew 11:25-27).—The setting in Mt. gives to this great devotional utterance of Jesus a tone of resignation in connection with the apparent failure of His ministry. Here, connected with the fall of Satan, it has a tone of triumph (ἠγαλλιάσατο).—ἐν τῷ πνεύματι τῷ ἁγίῳ: it was an inspired utterance, “a kind of glossolaly,” J. Weiss (Meyer).

21. rejoiced] Rather, exulted, a much stronger word, and most valuable as recording one element — the element of exultant joy—in the life of our Lord, on which the Evangelists so rarely touch as to have originated the legend, preserved in the spurious letter of P. Lentulus to the Senate, that He wept often, but that no one had ever seen Him smile.

I thank thee, O Father] Literally, “I make grateful acknowledgment to Thee .”

from the wise and prudent...unto babes
] Here we have the contrast between the ‘wisdom of the world,’ which is ‘foolishness with God,’ and the ‘foolishness of the world,’ which is ‘wisdom with God,’ on which St Paul also was fond of dwelling, 1 Corinthians 1:21; 1 Corinthians 1:26; 2 Corinthians 4:3-4; Romans 1:22. For similar passages in the Gospels see Matthew 16:17; Matthew 18:3-4.

unto babes] i.e. to all who have “the young lamb’s heart amid the full- grown flocks”—to all innocent childlike souls, such as are often those of the truly wise. Genius itself has been defined as “the heart of childhood taken up and matured into the power of manhood.”

Luke 10:21. Ἠγαλλιάσατο, exulted) The crowning point of the fruits of Christ’s office was reached at that time. He Himself rejoiced in the joy of His disciples described in Luke 10:20, But rejoice, etc.—Κύριε τοῦ οὐρανοῦ καὶ τῆς γῆς, Lord of heaven and earth) Satan is cast out from heaven and earth: the kingdom of God stands in heaven and on earth.—[νηπίοις, babes) Such were the Seventy, and those who had received their testimony.—V. g.]

Verse 21. - In that hour Jesus rejoiced in spirit. More than "rejoiced;" the Greek word rather signifies "exulted." Very rarely in the holy story of the life of lives is a hint given us of any gleam of gladness or of joy irradiating the spirit of the Man of sorrows. The exultation of the Blessed here was based upon his conviction that this first success of his own was but the commencement of a long and weary, but yet, in the end, of a triumphant campaign against the spirits of sin and evil. What these, in their mortal weakness by the aid of their poor imperfect faith in his Name, had been able to accomplish, was an earnest, a pledge, of the mighty work which his followers would, in the power of the same Name, be enabled to effect in the coming ages. In that solemn hour did Messiah see, in the far future, of "the travail of his soul," and was satisfied. The absence of all sign of joy in the life of our Lord is well brought out in that touching legend which we find in the spurious letter of P. Lentulus to the senate, that he wept often, but that no one had ever seen him smile. That thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes. Looking upon his servants after their return from their successful mission, a group made up certainly for the most part of poor untutored men - fishers, artisans, and the like, children of the people, without rank or position - Jesus thanks the Father that, in the persons of the men chosen to be the instruments of his work, he has looked away from all the ordinary machinery of human influence. As he gazes upon the band of successful missionaries, Jesus thanks the Father that henceforth his servants, if they would be successful, must owe the powers which gave them success entirely to his training, and not to the world's. Even so, Father; for so it seemed good in thy sight. This is "the only record, outside St. John's Gospel, of a prayer like that which we find in John 17. For the most part, we may believe, those prayers were offered apart, on the lonely hillside, in the darkness of night; or, it may be, the disciples shrank in their reverence, or perhaps in the consciousness of their want of capacity, from attempting to record what was so unspeakably sacred. But it is noteworthy that in this exceptional instance we find, both in the prayer and the teaching that follows it in St. Matthew and St. Luke, turns of thought and phrase almost absolutely identical with what is most characteristic of St. John. It is as though this isolated fragment of a higher teaching had been preserved by them as a witness that there was a region upon which they scarcely dared to enter, but into which men were to be led afterwards by the beloved disciple, to whom the Spirit gave power to recall what had been above the reach of the other reporters of his Master's teaching" (Dean Plumptre). Luke 10:21The best texts omit Jesus.


See on 1 Peter 1:6.

In spirit

The best texts add τῷ ἁγίῳ, the holy, and render in the Holy Spirit.


See on Matthew 11:25. From this point to Luke 10:25, compare Matthew 11:25-27, and Matthew 13:16, Matthew 13:17.


See on Matthew 11:25.

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