(Luke 13:1 NASB) Now on the same occasion there were some present who reported to Him about the Galileans, whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices.
Luke 13:1: This murderous act of Pilate is only recorded in Luke. The Galilaeans are frequently mentioned by Josephus as the most turbulent and seditious people, being upon all occasions ready to disturb the Roman authority. It is thought that these men followed Judas Gaulonitis of Galilee, who opposed paying tribute to Caesar and submitting to Roman authority (Acts 5:37).
Regardless, Pilate was a cruel ogre of a man. He intentionally tortured and killed many. His actions toward Yeshua and his cruel treatment of Him are a testimony forever to the evil in his heart.
(Luke 13:2 NASB) And He answered and said to them, “Do you suppose that these Galileans were greater sinners than all other Galileans, because they suffered this fate?
Luke 13:2: Yeshua is posing a rhetorical question to them. He is asking if their slaughter was because they were more evil then other Galileans.
(Luke 13:3 NASB) “I tell you, no, but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.
Luke 13:3: Yeshua says that unless they turn back to Torah, they too, will perish. This is the same message Elohim instructed Jeremiah (and the other prophets) to give to the people (Jer. 26:3-6).
(Luke 13:4 NASB) “Or do you suppose that those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them, were worse culprits than all the men who live in Jerusalem?
(Luke 13:5 NASB) “I tell you, no, but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.”
Luke 13:5: It is not known whether these men were evil in what they did or not. Some think Yeshua is referring to men who built an aqueduct that was paid for from Temple funds, therefore the men were evil in accepting the pay for this work. But this may have been an accident that killed bystanders, which is more likely.
Yeshua just gave examples of men who died either in their evil or as bystanders. He is pointing out the fact that unless they repent and turn to the Torah of Elohim, they will all likewise perish.
(Luke 13:6 NASB) And He began telling this parable: “A certain man had a fig tree which had been planted in his vineyard; and he came looking for fruit on it, and did not find any.
Luke 13:6: Yeshua tells a parable of a man who planted a fig tree in his vineyard which did not produce any fruit. Yeshua uses a barren fig tree to represent the hypocrisy of the Pharisees and Sadducees (Matt. 21:15-19).
“Bearing fruit” is a reference to following Torah (Prov. 8:18-20, Isa. 45:8). Yeshua is telling a variation of a parable given by Elohim through His prophet Isaiah (Isaiah 5:1-7).
Yeshua told other similar parables of fruitless people of Israel being disobedient to Torah (Matt. 7:12-23).
(Luke 13:7 NASB) “And he said to the vineyard-keeper, ‘Behold, for three years I have come looking for fruit on this fig tree without finding any. Cut it down! Why does it even use up the ground?’
(Luke 13:8 NASB) “And he answered and said to him, ‘Let it alone, sir, for this year too, until I dig around it and put in fertilizer;
(Luke 13:9 NASB) and if it bears fruit next year, fine; but if not, cut it down.'”
Luke 13:9: The owner of the vineyard was displeased with the complete lack of fruit on the fig tree. He gives the tree one more chance to produce fruit before it is destroyed. This was a message of warning to those of Israel who were not bearing the fruit of the righteousness of the Father.
(Luke 13:10 NASB) And He was teaching in one of the synagogues on the Sabbath.
Luke 13:10: Yeshua was always in the synagogue on the Sabbath. This was His custom (Luke 4:16).
(Luke 13:11 NASB) And behold, there was a woman who for eighteen years had had a sickness caused by a spirit; and she was bent double, and could not straighten up at all.
(Luke 13:12 NASB) And when Jesus saw her, He called her over and said to her, “Woman, you are freed from your sickness.”
(Luke 13:13 NASB) And He laid His hands upon her; and immediately she was made erect again, and began glorifying God.
Luke 13:13: We do not know a lot about this woman’s illness except that is was caused by a spirit and it affected her back so greatly that she was bent over. Yeshua called her over to Him and He healed her.
(Luke 13:14 NASB) And the synagogue official, indignant because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath, began saying to the multitude in response, “There are six days in which work should be done; therefore come during them and get healed, and not on the Sabbath day.”
Luke 13:14: This is not the first time Yeshua healed on the Sabbath. But it was apparently the first time He did it in this synagogue or in this area.
(Luke 13:15 NASB) But the Lord answered him and said, “You hypocrites, does not each of you on the Sabbath untie his ox or his donkey from the stall, and lead him away to water him?
(Luke 13:16 NASB) “And this woman, a daughter of Abraham as she is, whom Satan has bound for eighteen long years, should she not have been released from this bond on the Sabbath day?”
Luke 13:16: The logic used by Yeshua is impeccable. This woman was held in bondage by a spirit that tortured her for eighteen years. Why shouldn’t Yeshua release her from her bondage when everyone present in that synagogue releases their ox or donkey from the stall in order to feed them?
(Luke 13:17 NASB) And as He said this, all His opponents were being humiliated; and the entire multitude was rejoicing over all the glorious things being done by Him.
Luke 13:17: His opponents were humiliated. The entire multitude rejoiced over all the glorious things being done by Yeshua.
Was it necessary for Yeshua to humiliate these men who were against Him and against His Torah? He wanted their folly to be known by all. Yeshua is once again like Moses when he exposed the folly of the false magicians of Pharoah (2 Tim. 3:8-9).
(Luke 13:18 NASB) Therefore He was saying, “What is the kingdom of God like, and to what shall I compare it?
(Luke 13:19 NASB) “It is like a mustard seed, which a man took and threw into his own garden; and it grew and became a tree; and THE BIRDS OF THE AIR NESTED IN ITS BRANCHES.”
Luke 13:19: Yeshua now uses two parables to expose the evil in Israel.
He says that the Kingdom of Elohim is like a mustard seed. The mustard seed was known as the smallest of seeds in that day. When it grows into a tree, the birds of the air nest in its branches. Birds represent evil ones (Matt. 13:3-4, 18-19). Birds also represent evil in the Assyrian and Babylonian Empires in the Tanakh (Ezek 31:1-6, Dan. 4:12).
Yeshua is saying that the Kingdom of Israel has grown to be a big ugly bush and evil ones are resting there very comfortably.
(Luke 13:20 NASB) And again He said, “To what shall I compare the kingdom of God?
(Luke 13:21 NASB) “It is like leaven, which a woman took and hid in three pecks of meal, until it was all leavened.”
Luke 13:21: This is a remarkable message in this one verse. Leaven represents evil every time it is mentioned in Scripture (1 Cor. 5:6-7, Matt. 16:6). The Feast of Unleavened Bread is a Feast that is a reminder to get sin out of our lives.
The meal is the seed, which is the Word of Elohim (Luke 8:11). Scripture is consistent in it’s message, it’s methodology, and it’s symbolism.
The woman hid evil in the Word of Elohim. Paul just told us that a little leaven leavens the whole lump. A little evil will corrupt the entire Word of Elohim. That is the message of this precious little verse.
(Luke 13:22 NASB) And He was passing through from one city and village to another, teaching, and proceeding on His way to Jerusalem.
(Luke 13:23 NASB) And someone said to Him, “Lord, are there just a few who are being saved?” And He said to them,
Luke 13:23: Yeshua just told them that the Kingdom of Elohim is outwardly full of evil and inwardly full of corruption. So this was a very logical question raised by someone who was listening.
(Luke 13:24 NASB) “Strive to enter by the narrow door; for many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able.
Luke 13:24: Yeshua tells us to enter into the narrow gate. He is referring to righteousness. This is the gate of Elohim (Psalm 118:19-20, Isa. 26:1-2).
Yeshua says that many will seek to enter the gate of righteousness and will not be able. We are also told this in Revelation where we see the bride of Messiah, Israel, portrayed as a city. The unrighteous will not enter into the gates of New Jerusalem (Rev. 21:25-27).
(Luke 13:25 NASB) “Once the head of the house gets up and shuts the door, and you begin to stand outside and knock on the door, saying, ‘Lord, open up to us!’ then He will answer and say to you, ‘I do not know where you are from.’
Luke 13:25: Once Elohim shuts the door, it will be too late. He will answer and say “I do not know where you are from.” In Matthew’s account (which was probably on a different occasion) He states “Depart from me, I never knew you, you who practice lawlessness” (Matt. 7:21-23).
He will say to those who do not obey His Word, “I never knew you.” This is consistent with His Word throughout (John 14:15, 21-24, 1 John 2:3-7).
(Luke 13:26 NASB) “Then you will begin to say, ‘We ate and drank in Your presence, and You taught in our streets’;
(Luke 13:27 NASB) and He will say, ‘I tell you, I do not know where you are from; DEPART FROM ME, ALL YOU EVILDOERS.’
Luke 13:27: Look at how some Christian leaders have twisted Scripture to say what they want it to say. This is a note in the Believer’s Study Bible on this verse:
“Workers of iniquity” means literally “workers of unrighteousness.” These are not immoral men, but workers of the law, who because of a legalistic approach to salvation are producing only “unrighteousness.”
(Luke 13:28 NASB) “There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth there when you see Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God, but yourselves being cast out.
Luke 13:28: Yeshua says that many who were of Israel will be cast outside of the Kingdom where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
(Luke 13:29 NASB) “And they will come from east and west, and from north and south, and will recline at the table in the kingdom of God.
Luke 13:29: Yeshua says they will come from all over the world to sit at the table in the Kingdom (Isa. 43:5-11, 49:5-7, Isa. 2:1-4).
(Luke 13:30 NASB) “And behold, some are last who will be first and some are first who will be last.”
Luke 13:30: What does Yeshua mean when He says that some of the first will be last and some of the last first? He is apparently referring to the Jewish people who received the news of the Kingdom first and the Gentiles (Greeks) who received it last (Romans 2:9-10).
(Luke 13:31 NASB) Just at that time some Pharisees came up, saying to Him, “Go away and depart from here, for Herod wants to kill You.”
(Luke 13:32 NASB) And He said to them, “Go and tell that fox, ‘Behold, I cast out demons and perform cures today and tomorrow, and the third day I reach My goal.’
(Luke 13:33 NASB) “Nevertheless I must journey on today and tomorrow and the next day; for it cannot be that a prophet should perish outside of Jerusalem.
Luke 13:33: Yeshua is saying that Herod cannot stop Him from His mission. He will reach His goal on the third day when He conquers death. Regardless, He will keep moving for now, for His time is not quite yet.
(Luke 13:34 NASB) “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, just as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you would not have it!
(Luke 13:35 NASB) “Behold, your house is left to you desolate; and I say to you, you shall not see Me until the time comes when you say, ‘BLESSED IS HE WHO COMES IN THE NAME OF THE LORD!'”
Luke 13:35: Jerusalem has been the city that kills the prophets (2 Chron. 36:15-16, Neh. 9:26). Yeshua said that He wanted to protect Jerusalem like a hen protects her brood. This same analogy was used several times in the Tanakh (Ruth 2:12 Ps 17:8 36:7 57:1 91:4). Yeshua is speaking as a manifestation of the Father by speaking these words.
But Yeshua states that they will not see Him again until the time comes when they say, “Blessed is He who comes in the name of Yahweh!” This is also a quote from the Tanakh (Psalm 118:26).
Jerusalem will not see Him until they say “Blessed is He who comes in the Name of Yahweh.” That is exactly what happened (Luke 19:37-38).
Patrick McGuireCopyright 2014 Patrick McGuire and Beit Yeshua Torah Assembly All rights reserved, no portion of this Lesson may be reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission except in the case of brief quotations in articles and reviews. Beit Yeshua Torah Assembly Fort Smith, Arkansas