From: Harold R. Holmyard III (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Thu Nov 30 2000 - 21:41:42 EST
>I have several question about Luke 21.28, and will try to restrict them to
>the parameters of this list :-), even though I am trying to get it to
>preach on Sunday!
>ARXOMENWN DE TOUTWN GINESQAI ANAKUYATE KAI EPARATE TAS KEQALAS hUWN DIOTI
>EGGIZEI APOLUTRWSIS hUWN.
>First: "Stand up and raise your heads" I can understand that this is not
>literal, but what could a "figurative" meaning be, or have meant to greek
In context, one pictures human beings hunkered down in the face of awesome
natural disturbances (vv. 25-27), which would possibly be accompanied by
terrible human destruction (vv. 20-24). Yet the natural calamities would be
a pointer beyond themselves to the return of the Lord (vv. 29-33). Luke
21:29-33 is parallelled by texts in Matthew and Mark that describe the
second coming of Christ (Matt 24:29-44; Mk 13:24-37), even if the idea is
not so clear in Luke 21 due to the way that Luke divided his material. The
NT is clear that Christ will return visibly in the heavens. So perhaps
Jesus was saying that believers should let these signs in nature stimulate
encouragement rather than fear. The disciples should figuratively
straighten up and lift their heads to the skies in anticipation of the
visible advent of Christ.
>Second: (venturing dangerously close to theological meaning) Pauline
>APOLUTRWSIS is (normally/often) a freedom from sin/s, or from the
>body. Here it seems to be neither. Any guesses?
It seems that APOLUTRWSIS has the idea of "deliverance" from the trials of
the prophesied time. This is the translation offered by LSJ for Luke 21.28.
But I see no need to isolate it from such texts as Rom 8:23. The OT
pictures the terrible time prophesied by Christ as the antechamber to the
golden age. So Jesus could be pointing forward to the fulfillment of the OT
prophecies as well as to a redemption from danger.
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