Re. Luke 3:21-22 Cont'd
Sat, 9 Nov 1996 12:41:11 +0000


On reconsidering the passage with the insight of what was said by
Carl, it seems that I have detected a different focus in this
passage. As new as I am to openly discussing my opinions about what
the Bible writers intended to say based upon what they wrote, it is
helpful for me to bounce them around with those who have greater
experience in this area. I would like to be able develop a sense of
how to accurately draw conclusions about these things. This forum
is sufficiently non-threatening to air them without fear! Pardon me
if what follows is redundant!

Traditionally we have seemingly been hung-up on the event of Jesus'
baptism, and indeed for Matt. the wonder that Jesus would submit to
the Bap. of John is the focus. However, for Luke the infinitives
betray that the focus is on the opening of the heavens, the descent
of the Holy Spirit and the voice from heaven. He seems to be more
concerned with the affirmation of Christ's identity. Is it
fair to say that in this passage, if the syntax is anything to go
by, that John's baptizing the people,and the genitive absolute note
about Jesus being baptized and praying is the backdrop against which
God the Father designates the Son? (Or is does the rest of the
passage deserve more attention, or should I say, does it play a more
significant role?)

In addition, I failed to pick up on the aor. 2 infinitive, genesqai,
which seems to form a triad here, with anewchqhnai and katabhnai,
to my mind is the real substance of Luke's message. He
is seeking to establish the credentials under which Christ will
accomplish his mission. The next event describes the challenge to
Christ by Satan based upon this designation as the Son and later,
Christ will point to this event in the Nazarene synagogue and claim
that the Spirit of the Lord is indeed upon him in the messianic
sense. All of this occurs before His ministry gets under way. Even
the birth narratives, which are heavily flavoured with the OT styles
of expression and prophetic language, in Luke 1-2 seems to focus
on the identity of the baby as the long promised messiah.

How far out in left field is all of this?
Love to all the family,