But he said, Yes rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Blessed are they that hear the word of God.—The term thus used clearly designates here the message of the Kingdom spoken by our Lord Himself, as in the parable of the Sower (Matthew 13:20). In its wider application, it of course includes, though it must not be confined to it, the record of that spoken Word, or of subsequent revelations of the Truth in what we know as Scripture.
Blessed is the womb ... - She thought that the "mother" of such a person must be especially happy in having such a son.
Yea, rather blessed ... - Jesus admits that she was happy - that it was an honor to be his mother, but he says that the chief happiness, the highest honor, was to obey the word of God. Compared with this, all earthly distinctions and honors are as nothing. Man's greatest dignity is in keeping the holy commandments of God, and in being prepared for heaven. See the notes at Luke 10:20.See Poole on "Luke 11:27"
yea rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God and keep it; intimating, that though his mother was happy in bearing and suckling such a son, yet it was a far greater happiness to hear the word of God; meaning either himself, the eternal "Logos", so as to embrace him, believe on him, and have him formed in the heart; or the Gospel preached by him, so as to understand it, receive it as the ingrafted word, and bring forth fruit, and act in obedience to it, observe it, and abide by it, and never relinquish it. This is a greater happiness than to be related to Christ in the flesh, though ever so nearly. The Ethiopic version reads, "that hear the word of God, and believe, and keep it": for faith comes by hearing, and shows itself in doing. Barely to hear the word, and even give an assent to it, will be of little avail, unless what is heard and believed is put in practice.But he said, Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)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.28. Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it] See Luke 8:21. Our Lord invariably and systematically discouraged all attempt to exalt the merely human relationship or intercourse with Him, and taught that the Presence of His Spirit was to be a nearer and more blessed thing than knowledge of Him “after the flesh” (John 14:16; 2 Corinthians 5:16).
and keep it] Hearing without obedience was more than valueless, Matthew 7:21; Matthew 12:50; Romans 2:13.Luke 11:28. Μενοῦνγε) The mother of One who teaches so well is pronounced ‘blessed:’ but in truth rather blessed are they who follow the Teacher. So μενοῦνγε, [Nay but, O man, etc.] Romans 9:20; Romans 10:18 [μενοῦνγε εἰς πάσαν τὴν γῆν, etc.: “Have they not heard? Yes verily, their sound went into all the earth”].—οἱ ἀκούοντες, they who hear) including even that pious woman herself.—φυλάσσοντες, who keep it) viz. they who bear Christ and His word in their heart, as His mother had borne the Saviour Himself in her womb. [She however was one who herself also kept the word, being on that very account ‘blessed.’ Luke 1:45 (Luke 2:19).—V. g.]Verse 28. - But he said, Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the Word of God, and keep it. As was invariably his practice, he declines to enter into any discussion respecting the peculiar blessedness which earthly relationship to him might bring. It was not for public discussion. The Lord, in his reply, tells her? however, that there was something even more blessed than that earthly relationship to which she was alluding, and to that something all, if they pleased, might attain.
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