What about the Scribes and Pharisees who are standing on the outskirts of the scene?

Here are two peer responses to this assignment

imagine yourself in the shoes of the people who hear these parables. What are the “sinners” sitting at Jesus’ feet feeling? What are they thinking? What about the Scribes and Pharisees who are standing on the outskirts of the scene?

I believe that the woman in Luke chapter 7 was very loving and was repenting for her sins that she has committed. She does everything she can to express her regret to Jesus, “She stood behind him at his feet, weeping, and began to bathe his feet with her tears and to dry them with her hair. Then she continued kissing his feet and anointing them with the ointment.”1 The Pharisees are in disbelief that Jesus is a prophet. They couldn’t believe that Jesus would allow a sinner to be touching him. Furthermore, they couldn’t believe in a person who forgives sins. However, Jesus combated that with a parable. He explained that the more you forgive, the more you should love. Although the Pharisees invited Jesus into his home to share a meal, he didn’t receive the same love as the woman who was a sinner. All in all, Jesus forgave the woman for having such a strong faith in him, “Therefore, I tell you, her sins, which were many, have been forgiven; hence she has shown great love. But the one to whom little is forgiven, loves little.”2 “ Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”3

Luke 7:28

Luke 7:47

Luke 7:50

Finish the final parable. If Jesus had finished the parable, what do you think the elder brother would do? Why do you think so? How does the fact that this parable is not finished make it more effective?

I believe that after what his father said the oldest brother went into the house and celebrate with everyone else that his younger brother has come home. The younger brother was in great need for help. He thought that he could make a life on his own and that you could live without his father. On the other hand, the eldest brother seemed to have resentment because he follows the rules and is asking for praise. However, after his father talked to him it seems to be clear that there is no tension and that everything is swell. I came up with this ending because the two parables in Luke 15 share the same plot. A person will lose/regret what they have done and come home. Moreover, the people will be happy that you have come back and will have open arms for your arrival. “There will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous people who need no repentance.”1 Jesus is trying to say that it may be hard for someone to believe, but it’s even harder to find someone who hasn’t believed and now does. I think that not having this parable finished makes the reader think and find the true meaning behind it. In my case, I had to read Luke:15 a couple times to truly grasp the true meaning behind what it’s saying. I believe that having the last parable unfinished puts a much greater emphasis to finding the moral of the story.

Luke 15:7

What do you believe Luke is saying to the people of the Christian movement? What is the message which we need to hear in all this?

The gospel of Luke plays an important role within the Christan movement. The way I saw it is that in Luke, Jesus heavily used parables to share his teachings to the fellow people. He would figuratively give answers through storytelling. In Luke 7 and 15 it shares parables about Jesus having open arms and treating sinners with forgiveness and love regardless of everyone else’s perception. If Jesus is able to forgive sinners, then we as people should too. We should celebrate them and throw parties for when they have sinned and came back to Jesus for help and affirmation. I believe that the main message in Luke is to not drive people, especially sinners, away, but to bring them closer to Jesus.

Peer #1: Julia,
The Gospel of Luke is centered around Jesus’s good deeds and miracles performed, and their relationship to the people involved. Specifically, we see Jesus rewarding faithful followers of his, while occasionally receiving judgement from others. In Luke chapter seven, the story of “Jesus Anointed by a Sinful Woman” displays both sides involved in Jesus’s miracles; a sinner and a Pharisee. The sinner came to Jesus openly; completely giving herself to him, weeping and wetting his feet with her tears. She was feeling heavy remorse, and had faith overflowing out of her. She gives as much as she can to Jesus, though not much; covering his feet with her perfume. The Pharisee becomes seemingly jealous; pointing out that Jesus should know about her sins. Jesus uses a story comparing two people who owe debt to explain why this sinner is worthy of his attention. One person owes more debt than the other, but the money-lender forgives them both. Jesus continues by explaining that the person who owed more debt will love the money-lender more; connecting the story to the sinful woman. “Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven – as her great love has been shown. But whoever has been forgiven little loves little.” (7:47)

The “Parable of the Lost Son” continues the idea that people of strong faith should be rewarded; however, it shows the opposite. Focused around two brothers; the younger and greedier one receives more attention and praise from his father. The eldest son, who remained faithful to the father throughout the entirety of the story becomes upset, proclaiming, “Look! All these years I’ve been slaving for you and never disobeyed your orders. Yet you never gave me a young goat so I could celebrate.” (15:29) The father ignores this proclamation, explaining that the return of the youngest son should still be celebrated. If this parable was drawn out, I think that the elder brother would leave, because he felt his faith to his father was not being rewarded. The stories shared throughout Luke’s gospel emphasize a relationship between faith and reward; and I think that by leaving the story unfinished, Luke allows the reader to exercise their own faith in determining the end to the story.

Luke uses narratives that are relatable to the reader; various accounts of being strong in your faith, but also becoming occasionally doubtful. This relates heavily to the Christian movement; which is deep-rooted in faith and the idea that good deeds and strong belief in God will stay rewarding. Luke uses this combination of stories and symbolism to relate to the reader on multiple levels; spirituality is a journey of ups and downs, and it is important to provide people with that reminder.

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