Sunday, June 04, 2006

The ministry of Jesus as ‘the Way’ : Babu

 St. Luke depicts the whole career of Jesus as a course or way. This view of his career appears to be rooted in the pre-Lucan tradition, which refers Is. 40:3 to describe John the Baptist’s role in the desert, that is, “making ready the way of the Lord (cf. Mk. 1:3; Lk. 3:4; 7:27). “The specific meaning of the “way” (hodos), which would have had in John’s career, becomes for Luke a special designation for Jesus’ salvific mission.”49 Thus both Jesus and John are closely related through the details of the Lucan geographical perspective to the Father’s salvific plan.

In the infancy narrative itself we see different journeys to Jerusalem and Judea. Mary who received the Good News journeys from Nazareth to Judea in order to visit her cousin Elizabeth (Lk 1:39). Joseph has to go from Galilee to Judea (Bethlehem) for the census (2:4). Later, Joseph and Mary go with child Jesus up to Jerusalem in order to present him in the temple (2:22). So also the 12-year-old Jesus goes to Jerusalem with his parents in order to be in his Father’s house (2:41-52). At the beginning of his public ministry Jesus led by the devil goes to Jerusalem to be tempted (4:19).

The public ministry of Jesus in Lucan writings is presented in the framework of a journey narrative (Lk. 4:14-19:46). This travelogue has two parts, namely, journey in Galilee (Lk. 4:14-9:50) and journey to Jerusalem (9:51-19:46). Towards the end of Jesus’ Galilean ministry, “he went on through cities and villages, preaching and bringing the Good News of the Kingdom of God” (Lk.8: 1). The various travel narratives and journey situations in this section depict Jesus as a wanderer towards his Father.50 The very core of Jesus’ mission and ministry is stated at the close of the journey section. “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” (Lk.19: 10).


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