Luke 9

The Transfiguration SUMMARY OF LUKE 9: The Twelve Apostles Sent Forth. Herod's Wonder About Jesus. The Five Thousand Fed. Peter's Confession of Faith. Saving and Losing Life. The Transfiguration. The Child Healed. Who Shall Be Greatest? James and John and the Samaritan Village. Excuses for Not Following Christ.

He called his twelve disciples together. This Commission of the Apostles is given in Mt 10:1-42 Mr 6:7-13. Matthew's account is the fullest, on which see notes.
Shake off the very dust from your feet.

See PNT Mt 10:14.
Now Herod the tetrarch. Herod Antipas.

See PNT Mt 2:1. For Herod's perplexity about Christ, see notes on Mt 14:1-12 Mr 6:14-29.
Went aside privately. For the feeding of the five thousand, see notes on Mt 14:13-27 Mr 6:30-44 Joh 6:1-21.

A desert place. Near Bethsaida, on the eastern shore of the Jordan.

Bethsaida. Near the mouth of the Jordan into the Sea of Galilee.
He was alone praying. Only Luke informs us of this, his disciples being present, when he asked the question,

Whom say the people that I am? See notes on Peter's confession of faith, Mt 16:13-20 Mr 8:27-30.
The Son of man must suffer many things, etc. For the first announcement to his disciples of his death, and the discourse, see notes on Mt 16:21-28 Mr 8:31-9:1. About an eight days after. For the Transfiguration, see notes on Mt 17:1-9 Mr 9:1-8. Luke adds the facts (1) that the Lord "went upon the mountain to pray" (Lu 9:28); (2) that "as he prayed", he was transfigured (Lu 9:29); (3) that "the appearance of his countenance was altered" (Lu 9:29); (4) that the theme of conversation with Moses and Elijah was the Lord's "decease" (Lu 9:30,31); (5) that the apostles "were awake" when they saw the vision (Lu 9:32); (6) that they "told no man in those days", even as Jesus directed (Lu 9:36 Mt 17:9). They kept [it] close. Until after the death and resurrection of the Lord. Look upon my son. For the healing of the lunatic child, see Mt 17:14-21 Mr 9:14-29. Matthew calls the boy "lunatic" (Mt 17:15). The symptoms are like epilepsy. He said unto his disciples. For this second statement of the Lord's suffering at Jerusalem, see notes on Mt 17:22-23 Mr 9:30-32 Which of them should be greatest. See notes on Mt 18:1-6 Mr 9:33-50. For notes on the question of John and the Lord's answer, see Mark as above. When the time was come. The time of his suffering was not far away. He was about to leave Galilee.

He stedfastly set his face to go to Jerusalem. Knowing what he should suffer there. Just when this was we are not told.
Sent messengers. To secure a stopping place for himself and disciples on their journey.

Entered into a village of the Samaritans. To go from Galilee to Jerusalem "he must needs go through Samaria" (Joh 4:4), unless he went down on the east of the Jordan. The Samaritans were hereditary enemies of the Jews, and the two peoples had no intercourse.
They did not receive him. Because he was evidently journeying to Jerusalem. This stirred up their bigotry. They thus not only refused Jesus as a prophet, but violated the sacred duties of hospitality. The refusal to receive a religious teacher was considered rejection of his claims. Wilt thou that we command fire? These gentle apostles were filled with wrath at the insult to the Master. Their zeal for the Lord led them into a sanguinary feeling that was sinful. Thus, often, religious zeal has led men to sinful acts and a persecuting spirit.

As Elijah did? See 2Ki 1:9-12.
He . . . rebuked them. Their spirit was not his. He quietly left the inhospitable village and went elsewhere. He was not a destroyer, but a Savior. Zeal for Christ is no excuse for fanaticism. On these excuses, see notes on Mt 8:18-22 Mr 4:35. Luke adds a few new facts which I notice.

A certain man. A scribe (Mt 8:19).

I will follow thee. The Lord tries his sincerity by telling him of the hardships before him.
The Son of man. The Messiah.

See PNT Mt 10:23. He had no permanent home. Often his only shelter at night was the open sky.
He said unto another. A disciple.

See PNT Mt 8:21.
Let the dead bury their dead. Let the world attend to its own duties. To preach the kingdom rises above every other duty. The disciple was probably an apostle, who wished to stay with his father until his father's death. No man, having put his hand to the plough. An agricultural figure. The plowman must look ahead instead of back. So, too, of the Christian. The Savior's words were suggested by a request of one to go home for a farewell before following him. In thousands of instances it has been show that the convert who goes to confer with unbelieving relatives before the final step is likely to part with Christ instead. Heathen, ready to be baptized, who go home for a final farewell before the step, are likely to be persuaded not to take it, so missionaries tell us.
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