Lukas 3

1 In the shenat chamesh esreh (15th year) of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, while Pontius Pilate was governing Yehudah, when Herod [Antipas] was tetrarch of the Galil, and when Philip the brother of Herod Antipas was tetrarch of Iturea and Trachonitis, and at the same time Lysanias was tetrarch of Abilene,
2 And when, during the same historical period, Anan and Caiapha were Kohanim Gedolim, then it was that the dvar Hashem came to [the kohen-navi] Yochanan Ben Zecharyah bamidbar (in the wilderness).
3 And Yochanan went into all the surrounding region of the Yarden preaching a tevilah of teshuva for the selichat avon,
4 As it has been written in the sefer divrei Yeshayah Hanavi, KOL KOREY BAMIDBAR (A voice of one shouting in the wilderness, YESHAYAH 40:3): Prepare the Derech Hashem (the Way of the L-rd). Make his paths straight!
5 KOL GEY YINNASE VKHOL HAR VGIVAH YISHPALU (Every valley will be filled in and every mountain and hill will be leveled off), VHAYAH HEAKOV LEMISHOR VHARKHASIM LVIKAH (The crooked will be made straight, the rough paths made into smooth roads);
6 VRAU CHOL BASAR ES YESHUAT ELOHEINU (and all basar will see the salvation of our G-d). [YESHAYAH 40:3-5; TEHILLIM 98:2; YESHAYAH 42:16; 52:10]
7 Therefore, Yochanan was saying to the multitudes coming out to have the mikveh mayim’s tevilah supervised by him, You banim of nachashim, who warned you to flee from the charon af [Hashem] habah (the coming burning wrath of Hashem)?
8 Therefore, produce p’ri tov l’teshuva (fruit worthy of repentance), and do not begin to presume within yourselves, saying, We have the zechut Avot (merit of the Fathers) of Avraham Avinu, for, I say to you, that Hashem is able from these avanim (stones) to raise up banim to Avraham Avinu.
9 And already the ax is laid at the shoresh haetzim (the root of the trees). Therefore, every etz not producing pri tov is cut down and is thrown into the Eish.
10 And the multitudes were questioning him, saying, What then should we do?
11 And in reply, Yochanan was saying to them, Let the one having two kaftans share with the one having none, and let the one having okhel (food) do likewise.
12 Now came also mochesim (tax collectors) to receive the tevilah of teshuva, and they said to him, Rabbi, what should we do?
13 And Yochanan said to them, Collect nothing more than the amount having been commanded you.
14 And chaiyalim (soldiers) as well were asking him, What should we do also? And Yochanan said to them, Extort kesef from no one, and let there be no lashon hora, and be satisfied with your loin (wages).
15 As the Am [Berit] were filled with expectation, and all were wondering in their levavot (hearts) concerning Yochanan, whether perhaps he might be the Moshiach,
16 Yochanan answered everyone, saying, I give you a tevilah with a mikveh mayim, but Hu HaBah (He Who Comes, i.e., Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach) has more chozek (strength) than me; I am not worthy to untie the strap of his sandals. He will give you a tevilah with the Ruach Hakodesh and with Eish.
17 The winnowing fork is in his hand to clean out his threshing floor and to gather the wheat into his storehouse, but the MOTZ (chaff) he will burn up with an EISH LO TIKHBEH (fire not [ever] extinguished.
18 Therefore, with many other dvarim Yochanan was exhorting them, preaching the Besuras HaGeulah to the Am [Berit].
19 Now Herod the tetrarch, when he was reproved by Yochanan about Herodias, the wife of his brother, and about all reshaim (evil) which he did,
20 Herod added this above all: he locked up Yochanan in the beit hasohar (prison).
21 And it came about while all the Am [Berit] were receiving the tevilah, and when Yehoshua also had been given the tevilah and was davening, Shomayim was opened,
22 And the Ruach Hakodesh descended in demut gashmit as a yonah upon Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach; and then came a bat kol out of Shomayim, saying, ATAH BNI AHUVI ASHER BCHA CHAFATSTI
23 And Yehoshua himself was about shaloshim shanah, at the beginning of his avodas kodesh ministry, being the ben (as it was being thought of Yosef) ben Eli,
24 Ben Mattat, ben Levi, ben Malki, ben Yannai, ben Yosef,
25 Ben Mattityahu, ben Amotz, ben Nachum, ben Chesli, ben Naggai,
26 Ben Machat, ben Mattityahu, ben Shimi, ben Yosef, ben Yodah,
27 ben Yochanan, ben Reisha, ben Zerubavel, ben Shealtiel, ben Neri,
28 Ben Malki, ben Addi, ben Kosam, ben Elmadan, ben Er
29 Ben Yehoshua, ben Eliezer, ben Yorim, ben Mattat, ben Levi,
30 Ben Shimon, ben Yehudah, ben Yosef, ben Yonam, ben Elyakim,
31 Ben Malah, ben Manah, ben Mattatah, ben Natan, ben Dovid,
32 Ben Yishai, ben Oved, ben Boaz, ben Salmon, ben Nachshon,
33 ben Amminadav, ben Admin, ben Arni, ben Chetzron, ben Peretz, ben Yehudah,
34 Ben Yaakov, ben Yitzchak, ben Avraham, ben Terach, ben Nachor,
35 ben Serug, ben Reu, ben Peleg, ben Ever, ben Shelah,
36 Ben Keinan, ben Arpachshad, ben Shem, ben Noach, ben Lemekh,
37 Ben Metushelach, ben Chanoch, ben Yered, ben Mahalalel, ben Keinan,
38 Ben Enosh, ben Shet, ben Adam, ben HaElohim.

Lukas 3 Commentary

Chapter 3

John the Baptist's ministry. (1-14) John the Baptist testifies concerning Christ. (15-20) The baptism of Christ. (21,22) The genealogy of Christ. (23-38)

Verses 1-14 The scope and design of John's ministry were, to bring the people from their sins, and to their Saviour. He came preaching, not a sect, or party, but a profession; the sign or ceremony was washing with water. By the words here used John preached the necessity of repentance, in order to the remission of sins, and that the baptism of water was an outward sign of that inward cleansing and renewal of heart, which attend, or are the effects of true repentance, as well as a profession of it. Here is the fulfilling of the Scriptures, ( Isaiah 40:3 ) , in the ministry of John. When way is made for the gospel into the heart, by taking down high thoughts, and bringing them into obedience to Christ, by levelling the soul, and removing all that hinders us in the way of Christ and his grace, then preparation is made to welcome the salvation of God. Here are general warnings and exhortations which John gave. The guilty, corrupted race of mankind is become a generation of vipers; hateful to God, and hating one another. There is no way of fleeing from the wrath to come, but by repentance; and by the change of our way the change of our mind must be shown. If we are not really holy, both in heart and life, our profession of religion and relation to God and his church, will stand us in no stead at all; the sorer will our destruction be, if we do not bring forth fruits meet for repentance. John the Baptist gave instructions to several sorts of persons. Those that profess and promise repentance, must show it by reformation, according to their places and conditions. The gospel requires mercy, not sacrifice; and its design is, to engage us to do all the good we can, and to be just to all men. And the same principle which leads men to forego unjust gain, leads to restore that which is gained by wrong. John tells the soldiers their duty. Men should be cautioned against the temptations of their employments. These answers declared the present duty of the inquirers, and at once formed a test of their sincerity. As none can or will accept Christ's salvation without true repentance, so the evidence and effects of this repentance are here marked out.

Verses 15-20 John the Baptist disowned being himself the Christ, but confirmed the people in their expectations of the long-promised Messiah. He could only exhort them to repent, and assure them of forgiveness upon repentance; but he could not work repentance in them, nor confer remission on them. Thus highly does it become us to speak of Christ, and thus humbly of ourselves. John can do no more than baptize with water, in token that they ought to purify and cleanse themselves; but Christ can, and will baptize with the Holy Ghost; he can give the Spirit, to cleanse and purify the heart, not only as water washes off the dirt on the outside, but as fire clears out the dross that is within, and melts down the metal, that it may be cast into a new mould. John was an affectionate preacher; he was beseeching; he pressed things home upon his hearers. He was a practical preacher; quickening them to their duty, and directing them in it. He was a popular preacher; he addressed the people, according to their capacity. He was an evangelical preacher. In all his exhortations, he directed people to Christ. When we press duty upon people, we must direct them to Christ, both for righteousness and strength. He was a copious preacher; he shunned not to declare the whole counsel of God. But a full stop was put to John's preaching when he was in the midst of his usefulness. Herod being reproved by him for many evils, shut up John in prison. Those who injure the faithful servants of God, add still greater guilt to their other sins.

Verses 21-22 Christ did not confess sin, as others did, for he had none to confess; but he prayed, as others did, and kept up communion with his Father. Observe, all the three voices from heaven, by which the Father bare witness to the Son, were pronounced while he was praying, or soon after, Lu. 9:35 ; Joh. 12:28 . The Holy Ghost descended in a bodily shape like a dove upon him, and there came a voice from heaven, from God the Father, from the excellent glory. Thus was a proof of the Holy Trinity, of the Three Persons in the Godhead, given at the baptism of Christ.

Verses 23-38 Matthew's list of the forefathers of Jesus showed that Christ was the son of Abraham, in whom all the families of the earth are blessed, and heir to the throne of David; but Luke shows that Jesus was the Seed of the woman that should break the serpent's head, and traces the line up to Adam, beginning with Eli, or Heli, the father, not of Joseph, but of Mary. The seeming differences between the two evangelists in these lists of names have been removed by learned men. But our salvation does not depend upon our being able to solve these difficulties, nor is the Divine authority of the Gospels at all weakened by them. The list of names ends thus, "Who was the son of Adam, the son of God;" that is, the offspring of God by creation. Christ was both the son of Adam and the Son of God, that he might be a proper Mediator between God and the sons of Adam, and might bring the sons of Adam to be, through him, the sons of God. All flesh, as descended from the first Adam, is as grass, and withers as the flower of the field; but he who partakes of the Holy Spirit of life from the Second Adam, has that eternal happiness, which by the gospel is preached unto us.

Lukas 3 Commentaries

The Orthodox Jewish Bible fourth edition, OJB. Copyright 2002,2003,2008,2010, 2011 by Artists for Israel International. All rights reserved.