The initial first page posed a good question; and we’ve had some great answers so far; but people kept getting bogged down there.
I therefore switched to a ‘latest post first’ configuration, so we could get back to specific books & passages.
I’d like everything on this site — ideally anything in-or-about the Christian Bible — to be open to discussion here. (I’m still attempting to link things so as to facilitate that. If there’s a passage or subject you can’t find, ask & you might receive.)
For a number of years, this was a small-scale group blog [founded as ‘Friendly Bible Study’ by a man dubbing himself ‘Kwakersaur’], and I hope it can return to that format.
When my last active colleague wandered off, abandoning his own blog as well, we were on our way through Luke.
When I wrote this, we were on Luke 19:11-27. ‘The Parable of the Talents.’ Seemingly a simple, moralistic parable, it does get a bit harsh.
Could it have just been a disapproving observation [as William Herzog suggests] of ‘the way of the world’ in Judea’s 1st Century economy? Or was it (as people tend to think) a way of saying “I’m going to be gone for awhile; and I want y’all to make good use of your time & resources meanwhile. You might be sorry if you don’t…”?
While ‘Luke’ doesn’t go in for “wailing and gnashing of teeth” like ‘Matthew’; and his unlucky servant gets off with merely losing his ‘money’ — There’s that odd subplot of a returning king — Jesus?! — ordering “As for those enemies of mine, who did not want me to reign over them, bring them here and slay them before me.”
In light of NT Wright’s perspective in Jesus and the Victory of God (etc.) the story could be about Israel and its 1st Century leadership. Jesus, he says, conceives of his pilgrimage to Jerusalem as YHWH’s long-prophecized return to the Temple. & will want to know: How have they been doing with the authority, wealth, traditions God has placed in their care?
Any of several meanings can be worth pursuing.