Sending the Twelve: Commissioning

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Yeshua summoned his twelve emissaries to Israel and he gave them power to drive out dangerous spirits and to heal every disease and sickness those spirits had caused. Then he sent them on ahead in pairs to every city he intended to visit.

Matt. 9:35; 10:1, 5a; Mark 6:6b-7; Luke 9:1-2; 10:1

(Huck 58, 72, 109, 139a; Aland 49, 98-99, 142, 177; Crook 72, 102-104, 162, 196)[1]

Updated: 6-April-2021

וַיִּקְרָא לִשְׁנֵים עָשָׂר שְׁלִיחָיו וַיִּתֶּן לָהֶם רָשׁוּת עַל כֹּל הַשֵּׁדִים לְהוֹצִיאָם וּלְרַפֵּא כֹּל מַדְוֶה וְכֹל חֳלִי וַיִּשְׁלַח אוֹתָם שְׁנַיִם שְׁנַיִם לְפָנָיו אֶל כֹּל עִיר וָעִיר אֲשֶׁר הוּא הִקְרִיב לָבוֹא שָׁמָּה

Yeshua summoned his twelve emissaries to Israel and he commissioned them to drive out every demon and to heal every disease and sickness those demons had caused. Then he sent them on ahead in pairs to every city he intended to visit.[2]







To view the reconstructed text of Sending the Twelve: Commissioning click on the link below:

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“Mission of the Twelve” complex
Choosing the Twelve

Sending the Twelve: Commissioning

Sending the Twelve: “The Harvest Is
Plentiful” and “A Flock Among Wolves”

Sending the Twelve: Conduct on the Road

Sending the Twelve: Conduct in Town

Sending the Twelve: Apostle and Sender

Story Placement

We have included Sending the Twelve: Commissioning in the “Mission of the Twelve” complex, as its second pericope. To see an overview of the entire “Mission of the Twelve” complex, click here.

Click here to view the Map of the Conjectured Hebrew Life of Yeshua. __________________________________________________________________

Conjectured Stages of Transmission

LOY 121a TransmissionThe Sending the Twelve discourse has a complex transmission history. Luke records two missions: Sending the Twelve (Luke 9:1-6) and Sending the Seventy-two (Luke 10:1-12, 16). The two sending accounts in Luke share nearly the same form and similar content, but vary considerably with respect to wording. What is more, each of Luke’s sending accounts ascribes the mission to a different group of disciples, the Twelve (Luke 9) and the Seventy-two (Luke 10). Despite these differences, it is likely that the two mission accounts in Luke stem from parallel sources that described the same event.[3] The author of Luke probably copied the longer—and frequently more Hebraic—version which appears in Luke 10 from the Anthology (Anth.). The abbreviated version in Luke 9, on the other hand, was probably derived from Luke’s second source, the First Reconstruction (FR), which was itself a redacted version of Anth.[4]

Mark based his version of the Sending the Twelve discourse on Luke 9 in accordance with his usual preference for pericopae derived from FR.[5] However, this did not prevent Mark from borrowing certain details, such as sending the apostles two by two (see below, Comment to L30), either from the version in Luke 10 or directly from Anth.

Matthew’s Sending the Twelve discourse is a conflation of Mark’s Choosing the Twelve[6] with the versions of Sending the Twelve that the author of Matthew found in Mark and Anth. His reliance on Anth. accounts for the many similarities between the Matthew 10 and Luke 10 versions of the Sending discourse.[7] In addition, Matthew supplemented Jesus’ instructions to the Twelve with teaching material from other portions of Mark and Anth. in order to create the second of his five major discourses.[8]

Crucial Issues

  1. Did a mission of the apostles actually take place during Jesus’ lifetime, or is the apostles’ mission a literary construct that projects the missionary activity of the early Church back into the lifetime of Jesus?
  2. Did Luke invent the mission of the Seventy-two in order to prefigure the later mission to the Gentiles?


L1-7 Mark’s introduction to the Sending the Twelve pericope (Mark 6:6b) has no parallel in either of Luke’s Sending accounts. However, there is a distinct similarity between Mark 6:6b and Luke 13:22, as both verses describe Jesus passing through villages on a teaching tour.[9] We believe that Mark 6:6b is a paraphrase of Luke 13:22a, which the author of Mark used as a narrative bridge between his reports of Jesus’ visit to the Nazareth synagogue (Mark 6:1-6a) and his account of the mission of the Twelve (Mark 6:7-13).[10]

The first part of Matt. 9:35 is an expansion of Mark 6:6b[11] with vocabulary similar to that in Luke 8:1, while the final portion of Matt. 9:35 is nearly identical with the final portion of Matt. 10:1. In addition, the entirety of Matt. 9:35 strongly resembles Matt. 4:23, both of which introduce major discourse units in Matthew.

Matthew 9:35 Matthew 4:23 Mark 6:6b Luke 8:1 Matthew 10:1
      Καὶ ἐγένετο ἐν τῷ καθεξῆς  
Καὶ περιῆγεν ὁ Ἰησοῦς Καὶ περιῆγεν Καὶ περιῆγεν καὶ αὐτὸς διώδευεν  
τὰς πόλεις πάσας καὶ τὰς κώμας ἐν ὅλῃ τῇ Γαλειλαίᾳ τὰς κώμας κύκλῳ κατὰ πόλιν καὶ κώμην  
διδάσκων ἐν ταῖς συναγωγαῖς αὐτῶν διδάσκων ἐν ταῖς συναγωγαῖς αὐτῶν διδάσκων.    
καὶ κηρύσσων τὸ εὐαγγέλιον τῆς βασιλείας καὶ κηρύσσων τὸ εὐαγγέλιον τῆς βασιλείας   κηρύσσων καὶ εὐαγγελιζόμενος τὴν βασιλείαν τοῦ θεοῦ  
      καὶ οἱ δώδεκα σὺν αὐτῷ Καὶ προσκαλε-σάμενος τοὺς δώδεκα μαθητὰς αὐτοῦ
        ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς ἐξουσίαν πνευμάτων ἀκαθάρτων ὥστε ἐκβάλλειν αὐτὰ
καὶ θεραπεύων πᾶσαν νόσον καὶ πᾶσαν μαλακίαν. καὶ θεραπεύων πᾶσαν νόσον καὶ πᾶσαν μαλακίαν ἐν τῷ λαῷ.     καὶ θεραπεύειν πᾶσαν νόσον καὶ πᾶσαν μαλακίαν.

The minor agreements in Matt. 10:1 and Luke 9:1 suggest that these verses derive from a pre-synoptic source (Anth.). It is therefore likely that the final portion of Matt. 9:35 is based on the source of Matt. 10:1. Thus, the author of Matthew wove together verses from Anth. and Mark in order to create the introduction to his discourses in Matt. 4:23 and 9:35. The similarity of Matt. 4:23 and 9:35 to Luke 8:1 is probably the result of Matthew’s weaving yet another passage of Anth. into his redactional introduction.

Davies and Allison mention the pleasing balance the author of Matthew achieved in Matt. 9:35 with the three participial phrases introduced with διδάσκων (didaskōn, “teaching”), κηρύσσων (kērūssōn, “proclaiming”) and θεραπεύων (therapevōn, “healing”).[12] This balance is a product of Matthew’s intense reworking of his sources. A similarly-structured sentence is found in Matt. 28:19-20 (“going…baptizing…teaching”).

The weaving of sources in Matt. 9:35 is a microcosm of his procedure in the creation of Matthew’s Sending discourse (Matt. 9:35-11:1). The author of Matthew gathered disparate materials from Mark and Anth. and combined them in a new way in order to create a lengthy sermon on the proper behavior of Jesus’ emissaries and the conditions and outcomes they should anticipate as a result of their endeavors.[13]

L6 ἐν ταῖς συναγωγαῖς αὐτῶν (Matt. 9:35). A measure of distance and dissociation seems to be implied by the mention of “their synagogues.” The phrase συναγωγή αὐτῶν appears once in Luke,[14] 2xx in Mark, and 5xx in Matthew.[15] Matthew also has Jesus refer to “your synagogues” in Matt. 23:34.[16] The greater frequency of “their synagogue” and “your synagogue” in Matthew is symptomatic of the anti-Jewish tendency of the author of Matthew.[17] The present instance, however, may be due to the influence of Mark 1:39. Compare Mark 1:39 with Matt. 9:35 and 4:23:

Matthew 9:35 Matthew 4:23 Mark 1:39
Καὶ περιῆγεν ὁ Ἰησοῦς τὰς πόλεις πάσας καὶ τὰς κώμας διδάσκων ἐν ταῖς συναγωγαῖς αὐτῶν καὶ κηρύσσων τὸ εὐαγγέλιον τῆς βασιλείας καὶ θεραπεύων πᾶσαν νόσον καὶ πᾶσαν μαλακίαν. Καὶ περιῆγεν ἐν ὅλῃ τῇ Γαλειλαίᾳ διδάσκων ἐν ταῖς συναγωγαῖς αὐτῶν καὶ κηρύσσων τὸ εὐαγγέλιον τῆς βασιλείας καὶ θεραπεύων πᾶσαν νόσον καὶ πᾶσαν μαλακίαν ἐν τῷ λαῷ. Καὶ ἦλθεν κηρύσσων εἰς τὰς συναγωγὰς αὐτῶν εἰς ὅλην τὴν Γαλειλαίαν καὶ τὰ δαιμόνια ἐκβάλλων.

If so, then we have identified yet another thread that Matthew wove into the verses that introduced his first two major discourses.

L8 τὸ εὐαγγέλιον τῆς βασιλείας (Matt. 9:35). “The gospel of the Kingdom” is a redactional phrase peculiar to Matthew.[18] Lindsey noted that there is no clear equivalent to εὐαγγέλιον (evangelion, “gospel”) in Hebrew.[19] He therefore supposed that the term “gospel” did not occur in the pre-synoptic sources, but was imported into the synoptic tradition by Mark who had picked up this word from Acts and/or the Pauline Epistles.[20]

L12 Matthew 9:36 is a reworking of Mark 6:34, which the author of Matthew incorporated into the narrative framework for his Sending discourse.

Matthew 9:36 Mark 6:34
Ἰδὼν δὲ τοὺς ὄχλους Καὶ ἐξελθὼν εἶδεν πολὺν ὄχλον
And seeing the crowds, And coming out, he saw a great crowd
ἐσπλαγχνίσθη περὶ αὐτῶν καὶ ἐσπλαγχνίσθη ἐπ᾿ αὐτούς
he had compassion for them and he had compassion on them
ὅτι ἦσαν ἐσκυλμένοι καὶ ἐριμμένοι ὅτι ἦσαν
because they were troubled and downcast because they were
ὡσεὶ πρόβατα μὴ ἔχοντα ποιμένα. ὡς πρόβατα μὴ ἔχοντα ποιμένα,
like sheep not having a shepherd. like sheep not having a shepherd,
  καὶ ἤρξατο διδάσκειν αὐτοὺς πολλά.
  and he began to teach them many things.

In Mark the words “like sheep without a shepherd” come in the wake of the report of John the Baptist’s execution and allude to Num. 27:17 where Moses prays for a successor (i.e., Joshua = Ἰησοῦς in LXX). The function of the allusion is to present Jesus as the natural and legitimate successor of John the Baptist.[21] It is not clear whether the author of Matthew understood the allusion to Num. 27:17, but in any case the function of the crowd’s description as being “like sheep without a shepherd” is different in Matt. 9:36 than in Mark 6:34—the desperate plight of the sheep has become in Matthew the motivation for sending the apostles on their mission. Mark 6:34 was particularly apt for incorporation into the narrative framework of Matthew’s Sending discourse since Mark states that in response to the people’s condition Jesus began to teach them. Mark does not report the content of Jesus’ teaching, whereas the author of Matthew, who reworked Mark 6:34, omitted the reference to teaching but used the verse as the introduction to a major teaching discourse.

L13 At this point the author of Matthew inserted “The Harvest Is Plentiful” saying. Since this saying also appears in the context of sending the apostles in Luke (Luke 10:2), there is good cause for supposing that the harvest saying appeared in the Sending the Twelve discourse in Anth. Given the extent of editorial activity we have observed in the narrative framework of Matthew’s Sending discourse, we have decided to follow Luke’s placement for “The Harvest Is Plentiful.”[22]

L14-23 The high concentration of Lukan-Matthean agreements against Mark in these lines (L14, L17, L22) shows that Luke and Matthew each relied on a non-Markan pre-synoptic source when composing this section.[23] However, this is a fascinating case where Luke and Matthew did not rely upon the same pre-synoptic source. The Sending the Twelve pericope in Luke 9 comes from FR, while Matthew’s sources were Mark and Anth. Thus, Luke and Matthew were able to achieve agreement against Mark only insofar as 1) FR resembled Anth. and 2) Luke and Matthew adhered to the wording of their non-Markan sources.

L14 καὶ προσκαλεσάμενος (GR). Luke and Matthew agree against Mark’s use of the “historical present,”[24] each using a participial form of a compound of καλεῖν (kalein, “to call”). Choosing between Matthew’s προσκαλεσάμενος (proskalesamenos, “summoning”) and Luke’s συγκαλεσάμενος (sūnkalesamenos, “calling together”) is difficult. Against accepting Luke’s reading, we find that the verb συγκαλεῖν occurs 8xx in NT, all but one of which is in Luke-Acts.[25] Therefore, συγκαλεσάμενος in Luke 9:1 could be due to Luke’s editing. On the other hand, if Matthew had found συγκαλεσάμενος in Anth., he could have replaced it with προσκαλεσάμενος under the influence of Mark’s προσκαλεῖν.

In LXX, συγκαλεῖν is used to translate a Hebrew verb 11xx; in ten of these instances, συγκαλεῖν translates קָרָא (qārā’, “call,” “summon”).[26] In LXX, προσκαλεῖν translates a Hebrew verb 12xx; in ten of these instances, προσκαλεῖν translates קָרָא.‎[27] We have accepted Matthew’s προσκαλεσάμενος for GR since in Luke 9:1 there are more redactional layers (Anth.→FR→Luke)—and therefore more opportunities for changes to creep into the text—than in Matt. 10:1 where the author of Matthew may have copied directly from Anth. Happily, whether we accept προσκαλεσάμενος from Matthew or συγκαλεσάμενος from Luke, the best option for HR is -קָרָא לְ. In LXX, συγκαλεῖν translates קָרָא לְ-/אֶל‎ 9xx, while προσκαλεῖν translates קָרָא לְ-/אֶל‎ 8xx. See Choosing the Twelve, Comment to L6.

L15-16 τοὺς δώδεκα ἀποστόλους αὐτοῦ (GR). In L16, where Mark and most manuscripts of Luke have nothing, Matthew adds μαθητὰς αὐτοῦ (mathētas avtou, “his disciples”). Lindsey noted that “the Twelve,” when used as a title for the college of Jesus’ apostles, is difficult to reconstruct in Hebrew since Hebrew ordinarily requires a noun for “the Twelve” to modify.[28] Since the Lukan-Matthean agreements in this section indicate that Matthew was using his non-Markan source in Matt. 10:1, it is possible that Matthew avoided the un-Hebraic reference to “the Twelve” under the influence of Anth. But if Matthew relied on Anth., then he must have modified its wording slightly. Matthew is unique among the Gospels in suggesting that Jesus had only twelve disciples (see Choosing the Twelve, Comment to L7). The other evangelists are clear that Jesus had many disciples, twelve of whom he made apostles. Matthew usually avoided the term ἀπόστολος (apostolos, “emissary,” “apostle”)[29] and we suspect that Matthew replaced “apostle” in Anth. with “disciple.” The presence of ἀποστόλους in some manuscripts of Luke, including Sinaiticus, opposite Matthew’s μαθητάς is suggestive.[30]

לִשְׁנֵים עָשָׂר שְׁלִיחָיו (HR). On reconstructing δώδεκα (dōdeka, “twelve”) with שְׁנֵים עָשָׂר (shenēm ‘āsār, “twelve”), see Choosing the Twelve, Comment to L10. On reconstructing ἀπόστολος (apostolos, “emmisary,” “messenger”) with שָׁלִיחַ (shāliaḥ, “emmisary,” “messenger”), see Choosing the Twelve, Comment to L10-11.

L17 ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς (GR). Matthew’s word order (ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς ἐξουσίαν; edōken avtois exousian, “he gave to them authority”) is more Hebraic than Luke’s order (ἔδωκεν δύναμιν αὐτοῖς; edōken dūnamin avtois, “he gave power to them”).[31] We have therefore accepted Matthew’s word order for GR.

וַיִּתֶּן לָהֶם (HR). On reconstructing διδόναι (didonai, “to give”) with נָתַן (nātan, “give”), see Widow’s Son in Nain, Comment to L18.

L18 δύναμιν αὐτοῖς (Luke 9:1). Whereas according to Matthew Jesus gave the apostles “authority,” Luke writes that he gave them “power and authority.” We have omitted δύναμις (dūnamis, “power”) from GR and a corresponding word in HR since “power” seems to be a later addition from the First Reconstructor (the creator of FR) or the author of Luke.

L19 רָשׁוּת (HR). In rabbinic sources when an emissary (shāliaḥ or shālūaḥ in Hebrew) is commissioned with a task, this is often expressed with the phrase נָתַן רָשׁוּת (nātan rāshūt, “give authority”), as we see in the following examples:

מִי שֶׁנָתָן רְשׁוּת לִשְׁלוּחוֹ לְקַדֵּשׁ אֶת בִּתּוֹ

The one who gave authority to his emissary to arrange the marriage of his daughter…. (m. Kid. 4:9)

וְכֵן הָאִשָּׁה שֶׁנָּתְנָה רְשׁוּת לִשְׁלוּחָ{י}הּ לְקַדְּשָׁהּ

And likewise, the woman who gave authority to her emissary to arrange her marriage…. (m. Kid. 4:9)

ונפל ממנו רב מלמד שנתנה רשות לשלוחים לחבל

and many fall on account of it [Exod. 19:21]: This teaches that authority was given to emissaries to destroy. (Mechilta de-Rabbi Ishmael, BaḤodesh chpt. 4 [ed. Lauterbach, 2:310])[32]

Since in the present pericope Jesus is commissioning his emissaries, there is no more fitting reconstruction of ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς ἐξουσίαν (“he gave them authority”) than וַיִּתֶּן לָהֶם רָשׁוּת (“and he gave them authority”).[33]

L20 ἐπὶ πάντα τὰ δαιμόνια (GR). It is difficult to decide whether “impure spirits” or “demons” appeared in Anth. In Luke 9:1 the author of Luke was copying FR, and it is possible that the First Reconstructor changed “impure spirits” to “demons” for the sake of his non-Jewish Greek-speaking audience. In addition, the high concentration of Lukan-Matthean agreements against Mark in Matt. 10:1 (// Luke 9:1; L14; L17; L22) demonstrate that the author of Matthew relied heavily on Anth.’s wording in this verse, which lends greater weight to Matthew’s “impure spirits” in L20. On the other hand, it is possible that Matthew wrote “impure spirits” under the influence of Mark 6:7 (L36).

Two main considerations led us to accept Luke’s reading, “demons,” for GR. First, the author of Mark proliferated the use of the term “impure spirit” in his Gospel.[34] Three Lukan-Matthean agreements against Mark’s use of “impure spirit”[35] suggest that, at least in those instances, “impure spirit” was added by the author of Mark. Mark’s tendency to proliferate “impure spirit” casts doubt on the derivation of “impure spirit” in L20 from Anth. Moreover, in the Return of the Twelve pericope, when the apostles report their success in performing exorcisms (Luke 10:17), the term the apostles use is “demons,” not “impure spirits.” Since the author of Luke copied the Return of the Twelve from Anth., and since Luke 10:17 refers directly back to the Commissioning (Luke 9:1), it is likely that the same term, “demons,” occurred in both places. We have therefore accepted ἐπὶ πάντα τὰ δαιμόνια (“over all the demons”) for GR, concluding that πνευμάτων ἀκαθάρτων (“of the impure spirits”) in Matt. 10:1 is an example of the author of Matthew’s tendency to blend the wording of his two sources, Mark and Anth.

עַל כֹּל הַשֵּׁדִים (HR). In rabbinic literature עַל + רָשׁוּת is used in the sense of “authority over,” for example:

יש רשות אחרים עליה

…there is the authority of others over her. (t. Kid. 1:11; Vienna MS)

הרי רשות אבא עלי

Behold, my father’s authority is over me. (t. Nid. 5:16; Vienna MS)

In the Hebrew Scriptures the word שֵׁד (shēd, “demon”) occurs only twice, each time in reference to sacrifice to foreign gods (Deut. 32:17; Ps. 106:37). Both instances of שֵׁד are translated in LXX with δαιμόνιον (daimonion, “lesser deity,” “demon”). Whereas in Greek δαιμόνιον may have positive connotations,[36] in Hebrew שֵׁד always refers to a malevolent spirit.

Jesus’ investiture of the apostles with authority over the demons (cf. Luke 10:19) is a dramatic reversal of the status quo, for ancient Jewish sources indicate that many Jews before and after the time of Jesus perceived themselves to be (at least potentially) under the dominion of demonic forces. In the book of Jubilees, for instance, Moses is depicted as praying:

O Lord, let your mercy be lifted up upon your people, and create for them an upright spirit. And do not let the spirit of Beliar rule over them to accuse them before you and ensnare them from every path of righteousness so that they might be destroyed from before your face. (Jub. 1:20; Charlesworth)

Also in Jubilees, Noah prays for his family members when “polluted demons” (Jub. 10:1) began “leading astray and blinding and killing his grandchildren” (Jub. 10:2):

Let your grace be lifted up upon my sons, and do not let the evil spirits rule over them, lest they destroy them from the earth. (Jub. 10:3; Charlesworth)

So too, prior to setting out for the Land of Promise, Abram is depicted in Jubilees as praying:

Save me from the hands of evil spirits which rule over the thought of the heart of man, and do not let them lead me astray from following you, O my God…. (Jub. 12:20; Charlesworth)

In a non-canonical psalm referred to as “Plea for Deliverance,” which was discovered at Qumran, we find this prayer:

אל תשלט בי שטן ורוח טמאה מכאוב ויצר רע אל ירשו בעצמי

Do not cause a satan [or “adversary”] or an impure spirit to rule over me, neither let pain nor the evil inclination take possession of my bones. (11Q5 [11QPsalmsa] XIX, 15-16)[37]

Variations of this prayer also appear in rabbinic literature. In the Babylonian Talmud it is recorded that Rabbi Yehudah ha-Nasi taught that when a guest prays for his host he should say:

ואל ישלוט שטן לא במעשי ידיו ולא במעשי ידינו, ואל יזדקר לא לפניו ולא לפנינו שום דבר הרהור חטא ועבירה ועון מעתה ועד עולם

…and do not permit a satan [or “adversary”] to rule over the works of his [i.e., the host’s—DNB and JNT] hands or over the works of our hands, and permit neither him nor us to be confronted with any thoughts of sin or transgression or iniquity either now or in the future. (b. Ber. 46a)

Likewise, in the prayer that was to be recited upon lying down to sleep we find:

וישלוט בי יצר טוב ואל ישלוט בי יצר הרע

…and let the good inclination have dominion over me, but do not let the evil inclination rule over me…. (b. Ber. 60b)

These prayers attest to a shift of emphasis from external influences that lead to sin in the earlier Second Temple sources to internal impulses in the rabbinic texts. All of the prayers allude to a verse in the Psalms which says:

וְאַל־תַּשְׁלֶט־בִּי כָל־אָוֶן

…and do not cause any iniquity to have dominion over me. (Ps. 119:133)

Other rabbinic sources refer to the dominion of the Angel of Death:

רבי יוסי אומר על תנאי כך עמדו ישראל לפני הר סיני על תנאי שלא ישלוט בהם מלאך המות שנאמר אני אמרתי אלהים אתם וגו′ חיבלתם מעשיכם אכן כאדם תמותון

Rabbi Yose says, “It was upon this condition that Israel stood before Mount Sinai: on condition that the Angel of Death should not have dominion over them, as it says, I said you are gods… [Ps. 82:6]. But you corrupted your ways and therefore you will die like a human being [Ps. 82:7].” (Mechilta de-Rabbi Ishmael, BaḤodesh chpt. 9, on Exod. 20:19)[38]

The dominion of Satan, of demons or impure spirits, of the evil inclination or of the Angel of Death represents a complex of closely related ideas.[39]

A central tenet of Jesus’ message was that that through his his own mission of healing and exorcism God’s reign was breaking into the world and breaking down the strongholds of evil. The powers of sin and death, the powers that enticed human beings to idolatrous worship and that stood behind the thrones of the world’s empires were crumbling in the face of Jesus and his emissaries.[40] By sending out the apostles carry on his mission of healing and exorcism in other towns and villages Jesus was extending the limits of God’s redeeming reign.

The conceptual pairing of illness with evil spirits in Second Temple Jewish sources such as the “Plea for Deliverance” from Qumran (11Q5 [11QPsalmsa] XIX, 15-16),[41] in the Genesis Apocryphon (1Qap Genar XX, 26), and in the writings of Josephus[42] demonstrate that healing and exorcism were two sides of the same coin in the minds of many first-century Jews. It is therefore only natural that the same pairing should occur here in the commissioning of the apostles and in other Gospel narratives (cf., e.g., Luke 13:11).[43]

L21 ὥστε ἐκβάλλειν αὐτά (Matt. 10:1). In Luke 9:1 and in Mark 6:7 there is no parallel to Matthew’s “in order to cast them out.” Was this phrase penned by the author of Matthew to explain what having authority over impure spirits means, or did the author of Matthew copy these words from his source? In LXX, ὥστε (hōste, “so that,” “in order that”) occurs 178xx, 118xx in books that also appear in MT. Seventy-seven of those 118 instances (well over half) occur in the construction ὥστε + infinitive where the underlying Hebrew text has an infinitive construct.[44] Thus ὥστε ἐκβάλλειν in Matt. 10:1 could reflect the translation of a Hebrew infinitive construct.

On the other hand, there are several places in the Gospel of Matthew where ὥστε + infinitive appears without support from the parallels in Mark and/or Luke.[45] While it is possible that in each of these cases the author of Matthew added ὥστε + infinitive on the basis of Anth., we have to contend with the possibility that at least sometimes in Matthew ὥστε + infinitive is redactional.

In the end, and with a great deal of uncertainty, we decided to accept Matthew’s ὥστε ἐκβάλλειν αὐτά for GR since in L17-23 the author of Matthew seems mainly to have relied on Anth.

לְהוֹצִיאָם (HR). In an unpublished essay[46] Lindsey expressed his opinion that although Delitzsch and other early translators of NT into Hebrew used גֵּרֵשׁ (gērēsh, “drive out”) as the equivalent of ἐκβάλλειν (ekballein, “to cast out”) in exorcism contexts, he considered הוֹצִיא (hōtzi’, “cause to go out,” “bring out”) to be preferable. According to Lindsey, previous translators based their decision on the fact that in LXX ἐκβάλλειν is more frequently the translation of ג-ר-שׁ than any other Hebrew root.[47] Nevertheless, Lindsey preferred הוֹצִיא as the equivalent of ἐκβάλλειν because the root ג-ר-שׁ never appears in exorcism contexts.

In support of Lindsey’s opinion, we note the following:

    1. In LXX the verb ἐκβάλλειν occurs as the translation of הוֹצִיא‎ in 2 Chr. 23:14; 29:5, 16; 2 Esd. 10:3.
    2. The use of י-צ-א in both pa‘al and hif‘il forms with רוּחַ (rūaḥ, “wind,” “spirit”), a synonym for demon, is attested in BH and MH. In Jer. 10:13; 51:16; and Ps. 135:7, for example, we find hif‘il forms of י-צ-א with רוּחַ in descriptions of God causing wind to go out from his storehouses, while in Prov. 29:11 we find כָּל־רוּחוֹ יוֹצִיא כְסִיל (“a fool causes his entire spirit to go out”).
    3. A similar usage is found in rabbinic literature:

      עד שנתייגעו והוציאו את רוחו ואחר כך בא יוסף והחזירה

      …until they [i.e., the magicians—DNB and JNT] wearied him [i.e., Pharaoh—DNB and JNT] and caused his spirit to go out, and afterward Joseph came and restored it…. (Gen. Rab. 89:6)

    4. There is an example where a member of the heavenly retinue says:

      אֵצֵא וְהָיִיתִי רוּחַ שֶׁקֶר בְּפִי כָּל־נְבִיאָיו

      I will go out[48] and be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his [i.e., Ahab’s—DNB and JNT] prophets. (1 Kgs. 22:22; cf. 2 Chr. 18:21)

    5. In a rare example of an exorcism account in rabbinic literature, Rabbi Shimon ben Yohai says צא צא (“Go out! Go out!”) to a demon (b. Meil. 17b).
    6. Finally, the pairing of the verbs גָּעַר (gā‘ar, “rebuke”) and הוֹצִיא (“drive out”) is attested in rabbinic sources.[49] Although in rabbinic sources this pairing does not occur in exorcism narratives,[50] “rebuke” does feature prominently in exorcism contexts.[51] Therefore, we might expect גָּעַר to have been paired with הוֹצִיא in exorcism contexts, too.

Point 1 shows that הוֹצִיא is a justifiable reconstruction of ἐκβάλλειν.Points 2-5 above demonstrate that the root י-צ-א was used to describe the movement of spirits. Point 6 shows that הוֹצִיא is a natural companion of גָּעַר (“rebuke”), a verb we expect to find in exorcism accounts. Nevertheless, there remains some uncertainty regarding our reconstruction, which is partly due to the paucity of exorcism accounts in Hebrew and the lack of an exact parallel for “to cast out a spirit/demon” in any extant Hebrew source.

L22-23 καὶ θεραπεύειν πᾶσαν νόσον καὶ πᾶσαν μαλακίαν (Matt. 10:1). Luke and Matthew agree against Mark to include healing as part of the commissioning of the apostles.[52] As we have already noted, the numerous Lukan-Matthean agreements against Mark in L14-23 indicate that Luke and Matthew copied this section from non-Markan pre-synoptic sources. The wording of this section in Matt. 10:1 is consistently more Hebraic than the parallel in Luke 9:1, which we believe is the result of Matthew’s use of Anth., which was characterized by a Hebraic Greek style, whereas Luke copied this passage from FR, which adopted a more polished Greek style. Here in L22-23 we observe that Luke, or more likely the First Reconstructor, reduced the Hebraic doublet “every disease and every sickness” to “diseases” (plur.) and adopted a less Hebraic word order than in Matt. 10:1.[53]

וּלְרַפֵּא כֹּל מַדְוֶה וְכֹל חֳלִי (HR). In LXX the verb θεραπεύειν (therapevein, “to treat,” “to heal”) is quite rare; in only six instances does θεραπεύειν translate a Hebrew word in the underlying text, and in none of those instances is that verb רִפֵּא (ripē’, “heal”).[54] However, since none of Hebrew words that are translated with θεραπεύειν mean “heal” the LXX cannot guide our reconstruction.[55] For HR we have selected the most natural Hebrew equivalent for “heal,” the root ר-פ-א.

In MT, pa‘al forms of the root ר-פ-א predominate, but in the Mishnah pi‘el forms are more common.[56] We have reconstructed θεραπεύειν with a pi‘el infinitive construct since it would probably be a more natural choice for a speaker of MH even when he was attempting to write in a BH style.

On reconstructing πᾶς (pas, “all,” “every”) with כֹּל (kol, “all,” “every”), see Widow’s Son in Nain, Comment to L19.

The combination of νόσος (nosos, “disease”) with μαλακία (malakia, “sickness”) in a single verse occurs only once in LXX, in a passage that promises blessings to Israel in return for keeping the Torah’s commandments:

καὶ περιελεῖ κύριος ἀπὸ σοῦ πᾶσαν μαλακίαν· καὶ πάσας νόσους Αἰγύπτου τὰς πονηράς, ἃς ἑώρακας καὶ ὅσα ἔγνως, οὐκ ἐπιθήσει ἐπὶ σὲ καὶ ἐπιθήσει αὐτὰ ἐπὶ πάντας τοὺς μισοῦντάς σε

And the Lord will remove from you every illness [πᾶσαν μαλακίαν], and all the dread diseases [πάσας νόσους] of Egypt that you have seen and that you experienced he will not inflict on you, but he will inflict them on all who hate you. (Deut. 7:15; NETS)

In this verse μαλακία is the translation of חֳלִי (oli, “sickness”) and νόσος translates מַדְוֶה (madveh, “disease”). Note that the order of these terms is the reverse of that in Matt. 10:1.

Another passage in Deuteronomy brings the two terms “sickness” and “disease” together, this time in a litany of curses that will result from failure to observe the Torah’s commandments:

אִם־לֹא תִשְׁמֹר לַעֲשׂוֹת אֶת־כָּל־דִּבְרֵי הַתּוֹרָה הַזֹּאת…. וְהֵשִׁיב בְּךָ אֵת כָּל־מַדְוֵה מִצְרַיִם אֲשֶׁר יָגֹרְתָּ מִפְּנֵיהֶם וְדָבְקוּ בָּךְ׃ גַּם כָּל־חֳלִי וְכָל־מַכָּה אֲשֶׁר לֹא כָתוּב בְּסֵפֶר הַתּוֹרָה הַזֹּאת יַעְלֵם יי עָלֶיךָ עַד הִשָּׁמְדָךְ׃

If you are not careful to do all the words of this Torah…. Then he [i.e., the LORD—DNB and JNT] will bring upon you every disease of Egypt [כָּל־מַדְוֵה מִצְרַיִם] that you were afraid of and they will cling to you. Also every sickness [כָּל־חֳלִי] and every plague that was not written in this book of the Torah the LORD will raise up against you until he has destroyed you. (Deut. 28:58-61)

The two biblical passages we have cited are the only two places in Scripture where כָּל־חֳלִי and כָּל־מַדְוֶה occur together.

The author who composed the conjectured Hebrew narrative describing the commissioning of the apostles may have intended his readers to catch the allusion to these verses in Deuteronomy. The curses for disobedience had already come about: the kingdoms of Israel and Judah had been destroyed and the people had gone into exile. But although some Jews had returned to their homeland and the Temple had been rebuilt, the redemption of Israel had not yet been completed.[57] Only three of Israel’s twelve tribes remained,[58] and Israel was still ruled by foreign idolatrous empires. Demonic forces continued to plague God’s people and Israel’s faithfulness had yet to be vindicated. By sending the apostles to heal “every disease and every sickness,” Jesus sent a strong message that the longed-for redemption of Israel was taking place at last.[59]

L24 (Matt. 10:2-4). At this point the author of Matthew departed from his non-Markan pre-synoptic source in order to insert the names of the apostles. For a discussion of the names appearing in the apostolic lists, see Choosing the Twelve.

L26-28 The account of the apostles’ mission in Luke 10 comes from Anth. However, since Luke had already included the FR version of the apostles’ mission in chapter 9, Luke composed a new introduction to the Anth. version of the commissioning account consisting of L26-28 that ascribed the Anth. version of the apostles’ mission to “seventy-two others.”[60] This new introduction allowed Luke to include both versions of the apostles’ mission in his Gospel.

L28 ἑβδομήκοντα δύο (Luke 10:1). Although the manuscript evidence is divided between seventy and seventy-two emissaries, seventy-two is probably the original reading in Luke 10:1.[61] The author of Luke likely chose the number seventy-two because it preserves the relationship between the number of apostles and the twelve tribes of Israel (72 = 6 apostles per tribe).[62]

L29 καὶ ἤρξατο αὐτοὺς ἀποστέλλειν (Mark 6:7). Mark used the grammatical construction ἄρχειν + infinitive 26xx in his Gospel.[63] Luke agrees with Mark to use ἄρχειν + infinitive 2xx,[64] and Matthew agrees with Mark to use ἄρχειν + infinitive 6xx.[65] Mark used ἄρχειν + infinitive 18xx without the support of Luke or Matthew. There are no examples where all three Synoptic Gospels agree to use ἄρχειν + infinitive.

A view of Arbel and Sea of Galilee from Horns of Hattin. Photograph by David Bivin from the collection "Views That Have Vanished: The Photographs of David Bivin."

A view of Arbel and the Sea of Galilee from the Horns of Hattin. Photographed by David N. Bivin on May 17, 1965. From the collection “Views That Have Vanished: The Photographs of David Bivin.”

Matthew used ἄρχειν + infinitive 12xx: 6xx in agreement with Mark, 2xx in agreement with Luke (both in DT), and 4xx without Mark or Luke’s agreement.[66] It appears that when Matthew used ἄρχειν + infinitive it was usually taken over from his sources, but the author of Matthew did not always adopt this construction even when it appeared in his source.[67]

The distribution of ἄρχειν + infinitive in Luke raises questions about the interrelationship between Mark and Luke. Despite agreeing with Mark to use ἄρχειν + infinitive only 2xx, which might lead one to expect that Luke would avoid this construction, we have counted 26 instances of ἄρχειν + infinitive in Luke’s Gospel.[68] Luke used ἄρχειν + infinitive 13xx in TT pericopae without support from Mark or Matthew, 3xx in DT without Matthew’s agreement, and 6xx in unique Lukan pericopae.[69] This shows that Luke was not averse to using ἄρχειν + infinitive. Why then can Mark and Luke agree to use ἄρχειν + infinitive in only two instances? Lindsey observed that there are certain words and grammatical constructions that occur in Mark and Luke, but rarely in the same places. Often Mark used these words and grammatical constructions with inordinate frequency, which is why Lindsey referred to them as “Markan stereotypes.” It was Lindsey’s opinion that the reason Mark and Luke do not agree on the use of these terms and grammatical constructions was that, although the author of Mark used Luke’s Gospel as his main source, he consciously avoided certain Lukan words and phrases in the places where Luke had used them, only to insert them at different points in his own Gospel.

In support of Lindsey’s opinion, we note first that the dramatic drop-off of instances of ἄρχειν + infinitive in Acts (there are only six),[70] compared to the 26 instances in Luke, suggests that ἄρχειν + infinitive is more characteristic of Luke’s sources than of Luke’s personal writing style. We also note that Luke and Matthew agree 7xx against Mark’s use of ἄρχειν + infinitive.[71] These Lukan-Matthean agreements against Mark’s use of ἄρχειν + infinitive suggest that ἄρχειν + infinitive did not occur at those points in the pre-synoptic source shared by Luke and Matthew. Since Mark likely added ἄρχειν + infinitive in these instances, it is reasonable to suspect that many other instances of ἄρχειν + infinitive in Mark are also redactional.

In the present instance, it is difficult to decide whether Mark’s “and he began to send” (Mark 6:7) or Matthew and Luke’s “and he sent” (Matt. 10:5; Luke 9:2; 10:1) is more likely to reflect the reading of a pre-synoptic source. In favor of Mark’s reading, we note the following parallel:

בַּיָּמִים הָהֵם הֵחֵל יי לְהַשְׁלִיחַ בִּיהוּדָה רְצִין מֶלֶךְ אֲרָם וְאֵת פֶּקַח בֶּן רְמַלְיָהוּ‎ (2 Kgs. 15:37)

ἐν ταῖς ἡμέραις ἐκείναις ἤρξατο κύριος ἐξαποστέλλειν ἐν Ιουδα τὸν Ραασσων βασιλέα Συρίας καὶ τὸν Φακεε υἱὸν Ρομελιου (4 Kgdms. 15:37)

In those days the LORD began to send Retzin, king of Aram, and Pekah, Remalyahu’s son, into Judah.

Since Mark’s ἤρξατο…ἀποστέλλειν (ērxato…apostellein, “he began…to send”) is so similar to ἤρξατο…ἐξαποστέλλειν (ērxato…exapostellein, “he began…to send out”) in 4 Kgdms. 15:37, we cannot rule out the possibility that Mark’s phrase reflects a Hebraic source. On the other hand, the construction ἄρχειν + infinitive is not itself a Hebraism,[72] and could reflect Mark’s own editorial style. Given that ἄρχειν + infinitive is an editorial feature of Mark’s Gospel, and given the Lukan-Matthean agreement against Mark in L29, we have accepted καὶ ἀπέστειλεν αὐτοὺς for GR.[73]

L30 δύο δύο (Mark 6:7); ἀνὰ δύο δύο (Luke 10:1). Sending the apostles in pairs fits with Jesus’ usual practice of sending two disciples to perform a particular task,[74] and conforms to broader Jewish custom.[75]

Establishing the text of Luke 10:1 is problematic. Vaticanus, which we use as the basis for our reconstruction, reads ἀνὰ δύο δύο, but most manuscripts have only ἀνὰ δύο. Is the double δύο a copyist’s error, an assimilation to Mark 6:7, or the original reading? In LXX there is but a single example where ἀνά precedes a number. It is found in 3 Kgdms. 18:13 where ἑκατὸν ἄνδρας ἀνὰ πεντήκοντα ἐν σπηλαίῳ (“a hundred men, by fifty to a cave”; NETS) is the translation of מֵאָה אִישׁ חֲמִשִּׁים חֲמִשִּׁים אִישׁ בַּמְּעָרָה (“a hundred men: fifty fifty each in a cave”; 1 Kgs. 18:13). However, in other places where MT has שִׁבְעָה שִׁבְעָה or שְׁנַיִם שְׁנַיִם LXX has ἑπτὰ ἑπτά or δύο δύο (cf. Gen. 7:2, 3, 9, 15). In the writings of Josephus we find ἀνὰ μίαν (“one each”; Ant. 9:65), ἀνὰ τρία (“three each”; Ant. 12:102), ἀνὰ δέκα (“ten each”; Ant. 12:216), ἀνὰ πέντε (“five each”; Ant. 3:138), ἀνὰ πέντε καὶ εἴκοσι (“twenty-five each”; Ant. 17:322), ἀνὰ πεντήκοντα (“fifty each”; J.W. 1:658; 5:225; Ant. 17:172), ἀνὰ ἑξακοσίους (“six hundred each”; J.W. 3:67), ἀνὰ χιλίους (“a thousand each”; J.W. 3:67; 6:131) and ἀνὰ δισχιλίους (“two thousand each”; J.W. 2:500; 3:68), but no examples of ἀνὰ with the number doubled as with ἀνὰ δύο δύο. Does this strengthen or weaken the argument in favor of Vaticanus’ reading?[76] In any case, HR is reasonably certain.[77] We find שְׁנַיִם שְׁנַיִם‎ 3xx in MT (Gen. 7:9, 15; 1 Chr. 26:17), 2xx in Hebrew fragments of Ben Sira (Sir. 33:15; 42:24), 2xx in DSS (CD V, 1 [quoting Gen. 7:9]; 4Q365 23 I, 9), and frequently in the Mishnah (cf., e.g., m. Shev. 3:6, 7; m. Eruv. 10:1; m. Yom. 2:6; m. Suk. 5:6 [6xx]; m. Bab. Metz. 8:9; m. Sanh. 5:5; m. Men. 11:1; m. Meil. 6:1; m. Tam. 4:3 [2xx]; m. Par. 3:5).[78]

L31 πρὸ προσώπου αὐτοῦ (Luke 10:1). Apart from biblical quotations, πρὸ προσώπου + personal pronoun occurs in NT only in the writings of Luke (Luke 9:52; 10:1).[79] Fitzmyer (1:115) regards πρὸ προσώπου + personal pronoun in Luke to be a “Septuagintism,” an attempt by the author of Luke to imitate LXX style. However, it is more likely that πρὸ προσώπου αὐτοῦ is a Hebraism copied from Anth.[80]

לְפָנָיו (HR). In LXX, πρὸ προσώπου + personal pronoun occurs 96xx,[81] where it usually translates לִפְנֵי + pronominal suffix (e.g., לְפָנֶיךָ)[82] or sometimes מִפְּנֵי + pronominal suffix (e.g., מִפָּנֶיךָ),[83] and very rarely עַל פְּנֵי + pronominal suffix (e.g., עַל פָּנָיו).[84] The combination שָׁלַח לִפְנֵי occurs in Gen. 24:7; 32:4; 45:5, 7; 46:28; Exod. 23:20, 27, 28; 33:2; Deut. 1:22; Josh. 24:12; Mic. 6:4; Ps. 105:17 (cf. 2 Kgs. 6:32). Our reconstruction reflects the normal way to describe sending someone ahead (cf. m. Bik. 3:3).

L32 אֶל כֹּל עִיר וָעִיר (HR). Luke’s “city and place” (Luke 10:1) is a bit unusual, with no parallels in the rest of NT, LXX, or in the writings of Philo and Josephus. In Hebrew we find no examples of עִיר וּמָקוֹם, but in the late books of the Hebrew Bible, in Ben Sira and in DSS we find the phrase עִיר וָעִיר meaning “every city.”[85] The translators of Ezra and 2 Chronicles rendered עִיר וָעִיר woodenly, but the translators of Esther and Ben Sira avoided the repetition of “city,” suggesting that Greek speakers found this Hebraism to be vulgar and redundant. Perhaps Anth. preserved a more literal translation of עִיר וָעִיר, which the author of Luke subsequently changed to “city and place” for the sake of his Greek readers. Reconstructing with עִיר וָעִיר seems preferable to reconstructing τόπος with כְּפָר (kefār, “village”)[86] or חָצֵר (ḥātzēr, “village”), which is archaic.

L33 אֲשֶׁר הוּא הִקְרִיב לָבוֹא שָׁמָּה (HR). On reconstructing the relative pronoun ὅς (hos, “who,” “which”) with אֲשֶׁר (asher, “who,” “which”), see Choosing the Twelve, Comment to L11.

The verb μέλλειν (mellein, “to be about to”) occurs 43xx in LXX, but only 13xx in books included in the Hebrew Bible. Of those 13 instances, μέλλειν frequently has no counterpart in the underlying Hebrew text; consequently, L33 is exceedingly difficult to reconstruct. It is possible that the author of Luke changed the wording of his source to provide a more elegant sentence for his Greek readers, or perhaps the Greek translator of the Hebrew Life of Yeshua encountered an unusual Hebrew construction in his source and, against his usual practice, decided to give the sense of the Hebrew Ur-text instead of a literal translation. Two Hebrew constructions that might have prompted a Greek translator to opt for a less-than-literal translation are עָמַד + infinitive and הִקְרִיב + infinitive.[87] The former construction is known from rabbinic sources, such as:

קמה עומדת להיקצר וגפנים עומדות להיבצר

…grain that is about [lit., “standing”] to be harvested and vines that are about [lit., “standing”] to be plucked…. (y. Yev. 15:3 [78b]; cf. y. Ket. 4:8 [29b]; 8:4 [48a])

Thus, reconstructing ἤμελλεν…ἔρχεσθαι in L33 with עָמַד לָבוֹא is possible. However, the construction עָמַד + infinitive with the sense “about to” is rare and, except for a few variant readings,[88] is not attested in any sources earlier than the Jerusalem Talmud. Moreover, in narrative portions of the Gospels, as here in L33, we expect a biblical style of Hebrew. Therefore, we have not adopted עָמַד + infinitive for HR.[89]

The second possibility, הִקְרִיב + infinitive, occurs, albeit rarely, in MT. The best example is found in the story of Abram’s sojourn in Egypt:

וַיְהִי כַּאֲשֶׁר הִקְרִיב לָבוֹא מִצְרָיְמָה וַיֹּאמֶר אֶל שָׂרַי אִשְׁתּוֹ הִנֵּה נָא יָדַעְתִּי כִּי אִשָּׁה יְפַת מַרְאֶה אָתְּ

And when he was about [lit., “drew near”] to enter Egypt he said to Sarai his wife, “Now look, I know that you are a woman of beautiful appearance….” (Gen. 12:11)

Other examples include:

כְּמוֹ הָרָה תַּקְרִיב לָלֶדֶת תָּחִיל תִּזְעַק בַּחֲבָלֶיהָ כֵּן הָיִינוּ מִפָּנֶיךָ יי

As a pregnant woman who is about [lit., “will draw near”] to give birth will writhe and cry out in her labor, so were we because of you, O LORD. (Isa. 26:17)

וְאַתֶּם הָרֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל עַנְפְּכֶם תִּתֵּנוּ וּפֶרְיְכֶם תִּשְׂאוּ לְעַמִּי יִשְׂרָאֵל כִּי קֵרְבוּ לָבוֹא

And you, mountains of Israel, put out your branches and bear your fruit for my people Israel for they are about [lit., “draw near”] to enter. (Ezek. 36:8)

We have modeled our reconstruction of οὗ ἤμελλεν αὐτὸς ἔρχεσθαι as אֲשֶׁר הוּא הִקְרִיב לָבוֹא שָׁמָּה on Gen. 12:11. On reconstructing ἔρχεσθαι with בָּא (bā’, “come”), see Demands of Discipleship, Comment to L8.

L34-36 ἐδίδου αὐτοῖς (Mark 6:7). In Luke 9 and Matt. 10 Jesus first gives the apostles authority and then sends them out. The order of giving and sending in Mark 6:7 is reversed. The Lukan-Matthean agreement against Mark indicates that the author of Mark is responsible for the change. Transpositions of this sort are a common feature of Mark’s editorial style.[90]

L37-39 “To proclaim the Kingdom of God and to heal” may have been penned by the First Reconstructor as a condensed paraphrase of the Anth. material found in Luke 10:9:

Luke 9:2 Luke 10:9
κηρύσσειν τὴν βασιλείαν τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ ἰᾶσθαι καὶ θεραπεύετε τοὺς ἐν αὐτῇ ἀσθενεῖς καὶ λέγετε αὐτοῖς· ἤγγικεν ἐφ᾿ ὑμᾶς ἡ βασιλεία τοῦ θεοῦ.

The FR version of the instructions to the apostles in Luke 9:3-5 omits the command to heal and announce the arrival of the Kingdom of Heaven which appears in the Anth. version of the instructions in Luke 10:9. To compensate for this omission, the First Reconstructor summarized these instructions in the introductory narrative (Luke 9:2). The instructions in Luke 10:9 are closer to Jesus’ mindset, according to which healings are evidence of the arrival of God’s Kingdom. Therefore, in Jesus’ instructions healing preceeds teaching about the Kingdom.

Redaction Analysis

Attempting to reconstruct in Hebrew the apostles’ commissioning is a useful tool for detecting the editorial activity of the authors of the Synoptic Gospels. Sections that revert easily to Hebrew probably indicate that these passages were transmitted faithfully from the original Greek translation of the Hebrew Life of Yeshua, whereas the difficulty we encounter in reconstructing other passages is likely the result of Greek editorial activity on the part of the authors of the Synoptic Gospels or their sources. Each of the synoptic writers made changes to their sources in order to integrate the commissioning pericope into the narrative frameworks of their respective Gospels.

Luke’s Versions[91]

Sending the Twelve: Commissioning
Luke (Anth.) Anthology
26 Total
to Anth.:
15 Total
Taken Over
in Luke:
to Anth.:
57.69 % of Anth.
in Luke:
Click here for details.
Sending the Twelve: Commissioning
Luke (FR) Anthology
26 Total
to Anth.:
14 Total
Taken Over
in Luke:
to Anth.:
53.85 % of Anth.
in Luke:
Click here for details.

In Luke there are two apostolic missions, that of the Twelve (Luke 9) and that of the Seventy-two (Luke 10). The reason Luke reported two missions is probably because he had two versions of a single mission, one from each of his pre-synoptic sources (Anth. and FR), and, unlike the author of Matthew who wove parallel sources together, the author of Luke preferred to copy his sources en bloc. It is unlikely that Jesus sent different groups of apostles out on separate missions on two different occasions.

The version of the apostles’ mission in Luke 9 likely stems from FR, since this version is shorter, has a stronger focus on narrative than teaching, and has a more polished Greek style. Luke 9:1, which contains a number of agreements with Matt. 10:1 against Mark 6:7, probably reflects the original introduction to the commissioning pericope. Nevertheless, comparison with Matt. 10:1 shows that the First Reconstructor made numerous little changes to improve the Greek style, such as omitting the purpose clause “to cast them out” in L21, adopting a more natural Greek word order in L22, and eliminating the second half of a Hebraic doublet in L23. The author of Luke probably made a few additional adjustments of his own, such as changing καὶ προσκαλεσάμενος to συγκαλεσάμενος δὲ in L14 and maybe adding “power” in L18. Luke 9:2 looks like it could be FR’s attempt to summarize Anth. material now preserved only in Matt. 10:7-8.

The version of the apostles’ mission in Luke 10 probably stems from Anth. It preserves an overt Hebraism in L31 (πρὸ προσώπου αὐτοῦ) and culturally appropriate information in L30 (sending the apostles in pairs). In order to integrate the Anth. material into the framework of his Gospel, however, the author of Luke rewrote the introduction (L26-28) and he may have made changes to avoid phrases that sounded awkward in Greek (e.g., ἀνὰ δύο instead of δύο δύο in L30, or πόλιν καὶ τόπον instead of πόλιν καὶ πόλιν in L32). Why would Luke remove the Hebraisms in L30 and L32 but not πρὸ προσώπου αὐτοῦ in L31? Perhaps Fitzmyer was correct in supposing that πρὸ προσώπου αὐτοῦ would have been familiar to Luke from LXX. Unlike Fitzmyer, however, we do not believe that πρὸ προσώπου αὐτοῦ was an attempt on the part of Luke to imitate LXX style. It seems much more plausible that πρὸ προσώπου αὐτοῦ reflects the wording of Anth., Luke’s Hebraic source.

Mark’s Version[92]

Sending the Twelve: Commissioning
Mark Anthology
18 Total
to Anth.:
8 Total
Taken Over
in Mark:
to Anth.:
44.44 % of Anth.
in Mark:
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When the author of Mark, who used Luke and Anth. as the main sources of his Gospel, encountered doublets in Luke he usually preferred to copy Luke’s FR material, which he was able to identify easily due to its absence in Anth. Mark’s version of the apostles’ commissioning, accordingly, is a paraphrase of the FR version in Luke 9. The author of Mark made characteristic changes to Luke, using the historical present in L14, transposing the order of giving authority and sending, and omitting the command to heal (L22). Despite his reliance on Luke 9, it is clear that Mark was familiar with both of Luke’s commissioning accounts since he added the detail about sending the apostles in pairs (L30), found in Luke 10:1.

Matthew’s Version[93]

Sending the Twelve: Commissioning
Matthew Anthology
27 Total
to Anth.:
19 Total
Taken Over
in Matt.:
to Anth.:
70.37 % of Anth.
in Matt.:
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The author of Matthew used the apostles’ mission as the occasion for the second of his major teaching discourses. He also chose to conflate the Choosing the Twelve account with the description of the apostles’ commissioning. As a result of this decision, a great deal of editorial activity is evident in Matthew 9:35-10:5. Probably only Matt. 10:1 reflects the commissioning pericope as it appeared in Anth. In Matt. 10:1 we find important agreements with Luke 9:1 against Mark 6:7, and it is likely that Matt. 10:1 preserves the wording of the Greek translation of the conjectured Hebrew Life of Yeshua even better than does Luke 9:1. This achievement is due to Matthew’s reliance directly on Anth., whereas Luke 9:1 derives from FR, a revision of Anth. Thus, there are fewer literary stages between the Greek translation and Matt. 10:1 than between the Greek translation and Luke 9:1.

Results of This Research

1. Did a mission of the apostles actually take place during Jesus’ lifetime, or is the apostles’ mission a literary construct that projects the missionary activity of the early Church back into the lifetime of Jesus? Some scholars have questioned the historical veracity of the apostles’ mission.[94] In large part their skepticism is due to the almost complete lack of information about the apostles’ experiences while on their mission, the absence of any discernible effects of the mission, and Jesus’ minimal response to the apostles upon their return in Mark 6:30 and Luke 9:10 (Matthew does not report the apostles’ return at all!).[95] We believe that Jesus’ full response to the mission became fragmented in the pre-synoptic sources, so that it appears in sayings scattered throughout Matthew and Luke. The reconstructed complex that goes back to early material translated from a conjectured Hebrew Life of Yeshua suggests that a mission carried out by the apostles did, indeed, take place during Jesus’ lifetime.[96]

2. Did Luke invent the mission of the Seventy-two in order to prefigure the later mission to the Gentiles? Although we believe Luke did invent the idea of a mission of seventy-two apostles, it seems he did not do so in order to allude to a Gentile mission, but rather to maintain the essential link between the number of apostles and the tribes of Israel. If Luke chose the number seventy-two because it is a multiple of twelve—the number of Israel’s tribes—then this would seem to rule out prefigurement of a Gentile mission. Luke knew that the mission of Jesus’ apostles was a mission to spread the news of Israel’s redemption that was taking place through the inbreaking of God’s reign, which was manifest in and through Jesus’ itinerating band of full-time disciples.


Jesus sent the apostles on a mission to Israel to herald the longed-for redemption when God would set his people free from the rule of foreign empires and the diabolical powers that energized them, when the twelve tribes would be miraculously restored, and when Israel’s faithfulness to the Torah would be vindicated in the sight of the nations who had ridiculed and sometimes persecuted them. Israel’s redemption had already been taking place through Jesus’ healing of the sick, casting out of demons, and teaching about God’s character. Now it was beginning to take place through a wider group of Jesus’ followers, a select college of twelve fully-trained, full-time disciples, who were commissioned as emissaries to carry out the same redemptive activities that Jesus had initiated.

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  • [1] For abbreviations and bibliographical references, see “Introduction to ‘The Life of Yeshua: A Suggested Reconstruction.’
  • [2] This translation is a dynamic rendition of our reconstruction of the conjectured Hebrew source that stands behind the Greek of the Synoptic Gospels. It is not a translation of the Greek text of a canonical source.
  • [3] Two clues in Luke’s text suggest that there was but a single mission of Jesus’ emissaries. First, while describing the return of the Seventy-two, Jesus states that he had given the apostles authority over the power of the enemy, for which reason the spirits submitted to them (Luke 10:19-20). However, it is only in the Sending the Twelve pericope that Jesus gives apostles authority over demons (Luke 9:1; cf. Matt. 10:1); see J. Green, 410. Second, in the Two Swords pericope, Jesus asks, “When I sent you without purse, bag or sandals, did you lack anything?” (Luke 22:35). However, the prohibition against sandals appears only in the Sending the Seventy-two story, whereas Jesus’ question in Luke 22:35 appears to be addressed solely to the Twelve; see Manson, Sayings, 257. It appears that Luke desired to preserve both versions of the Sending account, and therefore ascribed one of them to the Seventy-two. The numbers 12 and 72 (= 6 x 12) are both related to the tribes of Israel; see Manson, Sayings, 257; Ze’ev Safrai and Peter J. Tomson, “Paul’s ‘Collection for the Saints’ (2 Cor 8-9) and Financial Support of Leaders in Early Christianity and Judaism,” in Second Corinthians in the Perspective of Late Second Temple Judaism (ed. Reimund Bieringer, Emmanuel Nathan, Didier Pollefeyt, and Peter J. Tomson; Leiden: Brill, 2014), 182 n. 163. Ascribing one account of the mission to seventy-two apostles was a literary device that allowed Luke to preserve the inextricable link between the number of apostles and the twelve tribes and yet also to include both the Anth. and FR versions of the mission in his Gospel.
  • [4] Lindsey noted that a common feature of the Lukan Doublets is that one version is typically longer and more Hebraic, while the other version is usually shorter and written in a more polished Greek style. This observation led Lindsey to the conclusion that Luke used two sources that were parallel to one another, and that the doublets are the result of Luke’s decision to occasionally copy both versions of a story that appeared in those parallel sources. Lindsey dubbed the longer, Hebraic source Anthology (Anth.), and the abbreviated, polished Greek source First Reconstruction (FR). Lindsey also suggested that much of the material in Luke 9:51-18:14, a section commonly referred to by scholars as Luke’s Greater Interpolation, stems from Anth. See Robert L. Lindsey, “From Luke to Mark to Matthew: A Discussion of the Sources of Markan ‘Pick-ups’ and the Use of a Basic Non-canonical Source by All the Synoptists,” under the subheading “Lukan Doublets: Sayings Doublets.”
  • [5] According to Lindsey, the author of Mark typically preferred Luke’s FR pericopae. See Lindsey, “From Luke to Mark to Matthew,” under the subheading “Lukan Doublets: Narrative Doublets”; idem, “Unlocking the Synoptic Problem: Four Keys for Better Understanding Jesus,” under the subheading “The Power of the Anthology.”
  • [6] See Choosing the Twelve.
  • [7] Martin noted that the Matthew 10 and Luke 10 versions of the Sending discourse are much more Semitic than either the Luke 9 or Mark 6 versions, which from the perspective of Lindsey’s solution to the Synoptic Problem is unsurprising since Matt. 10 and Luke 10 are based on Anth. See Raymond A. Martin, Syntax Criticism of the Synoptic Gospels (Lewiston, N.Y.: Edwin Mellen, 1987), 67.
  • [8] On the formation of Matthew’s Sending discourse, see Burnett H. Streeter, “On the Original Order of Q,” in Studies in the Synoptic Problem (ed. W. Sanday; Oxford: Clarendon, 1911), 141-164, esp. 149; Bundy, 333; Knox, 2:48; Francis Wright Beare, “The Mission of the Disciples and the Mission Charge: Matthew 10 and Parallels,” Journal of Biblical Literature 89 (1970): 1-13, esp. 3; Fitzmyer, 2:842. Commenting on the different redactional styles of Luke and Matthew, Streeter (210-211) wrote, “when Mark and Q overlap, Matthew carefully conflates the two,” and suggested that “perhaps the best illustration of the difference in their method is the conflation by Matthew (x. 1 ff.) of the Charge to the Seventy (Lk. x. 1-10) with Mark’s Charge to the Twelve (Mk. vi. 7 ff.), as contrasted with Luke’s presentation of the same material as two distinct episodes.”
  • [9] Lindsey suggested that the author of Mark frequently supplemented his narrative with words and phrases from the portions of Luke he omitted. See Robert L. Lindsey, “A New Approach to the Synoptic Gospels,” thesis 10; idem, “The Major Importance of the ‘Minor’ Agreements,” under the subheading “Hebraic Texts and Synoptic Interdependence.”
  • [10] Cf. Bundy, 251.
  • [11] Bundy (155) writes, “Mk 6:6b has a teaching tour precede the mission of the twelve, and in 9:35 Matthew seems to be borrowing this idea from Mark, but he expands this purely editorial notice of Mark to suit his own literary plan and purpose.” Cf. Montefiore, TSG, 2:140-141; Beare, “The Mission of the Disciples and the Mission Charge,” 6.
  • [12] See Davies-Allison, 2:146.
  • [13] Robert Morosco provides a detailed diagram of the Markan and Lukan parallels to Matthew’s Sending discourse. See Robert E. Morosco, “Matthew’s Formation of a Commissioning Type-Scene out of the Story of Jesus’ Commissioning of the Twelve,” Journal of Biblical Literature 103.4 (1984): 539-556, diagram on 540-541.
  • [14] The phrase συναγωγή τῶν Ἰουδαίων (sūnagōgē tōn Ioudaiōn, “synagogue of the Jews”), which occurs 4xx in Acts (Acts 13:5; 14:1; 17:1, 17), hints at the non-Jewish identity of the author of Luke-Acts and his audience, but does not necessarily have a negative connotation.
  • [15] We find συναγωγή αὐτῶν in Matt. 4:23; 9:35; 10:17; 12:9; 13:54; Mark 1:23, 39; Luke 4:15.
  • [16] On the equally dissociative references to “your Torah” in John, see David Flusser, “The Gospel of John’s Jewish-Christian Source,” under the subheading “The Author of the Fourth Gospel.”
  • [17] On anti-Jewish sentiment in the Gospel of Matthew, see David Flusser, “Two Anti-Jewish Montages in Matthew” (Flusser, JOC, 552-560); idem, “Matthew’s Verus Israel” (Flusser, JOC, 561-574); idem, “Anti-Jewish Sentiment in the Gospel of Matthew” (Flusser, JSTP2, 351-353); R. Steven Notley, “Anti-Jewish Tendencies in the Synoptic Gospels”; Rich Man Declines the Kingdom of Heaven, under the subheading “Redaction Analysis: Matthew’s Version.”
  • [18] The term εὐαγγέλιον occurs 8xx in Mark (Mark 1:1, 14, 15; 8:35; 10:29; 13:10; 14:9; 16:15), 4xx in Matthew (Matt. 4:23; 9:35; 24:14; 26:13; the first three instances are part of the phrase τὸ εὐαγγέλιον τῆς βασιλείας), and 0xx in Luke.
  • [19] See Robert L. Lindsey, “A New Approach to the Synoptic Gospels,” under the subheading “Personal Encounter with the Problem”; cf. Buchanan, 1:426.
  • [20] See Joshua N. Tilton and David N. Bivin, “LOY Excursus: Catalog of Markan Stereotypes and Possible Markan Pick-ups,” under the entry for Mark 1:1.
  • [21] See Rainey-Notley, 315.
  • [22] See Sending the Twelve: “The Harvest Is Plentiful” and “A Flock Among Wolves,” under the subheading “Story Placement.”
  • [23] See Luz (2:66 n. 6), who writes, “The minor agreements are so numerous…that one may ask whether the original Q introduction to the sending discourse is to be found behind Matt. 10:1 and Luke 9:1.”
  • [24] On Mark’s use of the historical present, see the table in the footnotes to “LOY Excursus: Mark’s Editorial Style.”
  • [25] In NT, the verb συγκαλεῖν appears in Mark 15:16; Luke 9:1; 15:6, 9; 23:13; Acts 5:21; 10:24; 28:17.
  • [26] In LXX, συγκαλεῖν translates קָרָא in Exod. 7:11; Josh. 9:22; 10:24; 22:1; 23:2; 24:1; Prov. 9:3; Zech. 3:10; Isa. 62:12 (variant reading); Jer. 1:15.
  • [27] In LXX, προσκαλεῖν translates קָרָא in Gen. 28:1; Exod. 5:3; 1 Kgdms. 26:14; Esth. 4:5; Ps. 49:4; Prov. 9:15; Job 17:14 (variant reading); Amos 5:8; 9:6; Joel 3:5.
  • [28] Lindsey explained that in Hebrew it is unusual to have a number like “twelve” function as a stand-alone noun. It is more usual for the number to modify a noun like “tribes” or “apostles.” In Hebrew one can refer to “the twelve tribes” or to “the twelve apostles,” but normally not to “the Twelve.” See Lindsey, HTGM, 69-70; cf. Choosing the Twelve, Comment to L10-11.
  • [29] The sole occurrence of ἀπόστολος in the Gospel of Matthew is in Matt. 10:2.
  • [30] Commenting on Luke 9:1, Bovon (1:344 n. 8) writes, “Some good mss. add the title ‘Apostles’ to ‘the Twelve.’ See Metzger (Textual Commentary, 146), who speaks too critically of ‘later copyists.’”
  • [31] Here, as elsewhere, we are using Vaticanus as our base text. In N-A, Matthew and Luke have the same word order (ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς). On the rationale for using Codex Vaticanus for the base text of the reconstruction, see  the Introduction to ‘The Life of Yeshua: A Suggested Reconstruction,’ under the subheading “Codex Vaticanus or an Eclectic Text?”
  • [32] In addition we find examples of emissaries acting by the authority of their commissioner expressed as בְּרָשׁוּת (berāshūt):

    שלוח בית דין שהכה ברשות בית דין והזיק בשוגג פטור במזיד חייב מפני תיקון העולם

    An emissary [שלוח] of the court who strikes a blow by authority of the court and he does [permanent] harm unintentionally is exempt, but if intentionally, he is liable because of the public good. (t. Git. 3:8; Vienna MS)

    שליח בית דין שהכה ברשות בית דין והזיק פטור מדיני אדם ודינו מסור לשמים

    An emissary [שליח] of the court who struck [a person while carrying out his sentence] by authority of the court and he did [permanent] harm is exempt from human judgment and his judgment is handed over to Heaven. (t. Bab. Kam. 6:17; Vienna MS; cf. t. Bab. Kam. 9:11; t. Mak. 2:5)

  • [33] In the Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs, with respect to the eschatological priest, we read:

    καὶ δώσει ἐξουσίαν τοῖς τέκνοις αὐτοῦ τοῦ πατεῖν ἐπὶ τὰ πονηρὰ πνεύματα

    And he shall grant to his children the authority to trample on wicked spirits. (T. Levi 18:12; Charlesworth)

    The language in this passage is strikingly similar to the description of the commissioning of the apostles in L17-20.

  • [34] The author of Luke used the term “impure spirit” 6xx in his Gospel and 2xx in Acts (Luke 4:33 [πνεῦμα δαιμονίου ἀκαθάρτου], 36; 6:18; 8:29; 9:42; 11:24; Acts 5:16; 8:7. The author of Mark accepted every instance of Luke’s use of “impure spirit,” except for Luke 11:24, which appears in a pericope not included in Mark (Mark 1:23 = Luke 4:33; Mark 1:27 = Luke 4:36; Mark 3:11 = Luke 6:18 [cf. Matt. 12:15]; Mark 5:8 = Luke 8:29; Mark 9:25 = Luke 9:42 [cf. Matt. 17:18]) but Mark also has “impure spirit” where the Lukan and/or Matthean parallels have synonyms such as “demon” or “demonized.” In all, Mark refers to “impure spirits” 11xx in his Gospel. See Joshua N. Tilton and David N. Bivin, “LOY Excursus: Catalog of Markan Stereotypes and Possible Markan Pick-ups,” under the entry for Mark 1:23.
  • [35] The three points at which Luke and Matthew agree against Mark’s use of impure spirit are Mark 3:30 (TT pericope but the entire verse is omitted in Luke and Matthew); Mark 5:2 (cf. Luke 8:27; Matt. 8:28); Mark 5:13 (cf. Luke 8:33; Matt. 8:31).
  • [36] See T. H. Gaster, “Demon, Demonology,” in The Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible (4 vols.; ed. George A. Buttrick et al.; Nashville: Abingdon, 1962), 1:817; Werner Foerster, “δαίμων, δαιμόνιον,” TDNT, 2:2-3. Even in NT δαιμόνιον is not necessarily a negative term. In the phrase ξένων δαιμονίων (“foreign deities”; Acts 17:18) it is the adjective ξένος, not the noun δαιμόνιον, that has the negative connotation. Likewise, among Jewish authors δαιμόνιον is sometimes used in a positive sense. Thus, of a Jewish high priest Josephus could write:

    ὡμίλει γὰρ αὐτῷ τὸ δαιμόνιον ὡς μηδὲν τῶν μελλόντων ἀγνοεῖν, ὅς γε καὶ περὶ δύο τῶν πρεσβυτέρων υἱῶν ὅτι μὴ διαμενοῦσι κύριοι τῶν πραγμάτων προεῖδέν τε καὶ προεφήτευσεν.

    For so closely was he in touch with the Deity [τὸ δαιμόνιον], that he was never ignorant of the future; thus he foresaw and predicted that his two elder sons would not remain at the head of affairs. (J.W. 1:69; Loeb)

    In the above quotation Josephus used δαιμόνιον as a synonym for the God of Israel. So, too, in the following example:

    τῷ γὰρ ὄντι πλεῖστα μὲν τῶν ἔξωθεν καὶ παρ᾿ ἐλπίδας εἰς εὐτυχίαν αὐτῷ τὸ δαιμόνιον προσετίθει….

    In truth, a divine power [δαιμόνιον] had given him [i.e., Herod—DNB and JNT] a great many instances of good fortune, even more than he had hoped for, in external affairs…. (Ant. 16:76; Loeb)

  • [37] Flusser believed that this non-canonical psalm was not composed by members of the Qumran community, since it does not use terminology typical of sectarian literature. See David Flusser, “Qumran and Jewish ‘Apotropaic’ Prayers” (JOC, 214-225, esp. 215); idem, “Psalms, Hymns and Prayers,” in Jewish Writings of the Second Temple Period (CRINT II.2; ed. Michael E. Stone; Philadelphia: Fortress, 1984), 551-577, esp. 561.

    Compare the “Plea for Deliverance” to a line from the Prayer of Levi preserved in its original language and in Greek translation:

    [ — ו]אל תשלט בי כל שטן

    καὶ μὴ κατισχυάτω με πᾶς σατανᾶς πλανῆσαί με ἀπὸ τῆς ὁδοῦ σου

    And do not cause any satan to have dominion over me to make me wander from your way. (4QLevib ar [4Q213a] 1 I, 17; T. Levi after 2:3 in the Mount Athos MS)

    See Michael E. Stone and Jonas C. Greenfield, “The Prayer of Levi,” Journal of Biblical Literature 112.2 (1993): 247-266.

  • [38] Rabbi Yose’s comment may be compared to Rom. 5:14, where Paul writes that from the time of Adam until Moses Death had dominion over human beings. On this passage in Romans, see Gary A. Anderson, “The Status of the Torah in the Pre-Sinaitic Period: St. Paul’s Epistle to the Romans,” in Biblical Perspectives: Early Use and Interpretation of the Bible in Light of the Dead Sea Scrolls (ed. Michael E. Stone and Esther G. Chazon; Leiden: Brill, 1998), 1-23.
  • [39] According to one rabbinic sage, the above mentioned names are all synonymous:

    אמר ר″ל הוא שטן הוא יצר הרע הוא מלאך המות

    Resh Lakish said, “Satan is [the same as] the evil inclination, which is [the same as] the Angel of Death.” (b. Bab. Bat. 16a)

    See Flusser, “Qumran and Jewish ‘Apotropaic’ Prayers” (JOC, 219-220); Ishay Rosen-Zvi, “Yetser Ha-Ra and Daimones: A Shared Ancient Jewish and Christian Discourse,” in Jews and Christians in the First and Second Centuries: How to Write Their History (CRINT 13; ed. Peter J. Tomson and Joshua Schwartz; Leiden: Brill, 2014), 431-453.

  • [40] For a discussion of the political implications of exorcism, see Richard A. Horsley, Jesus and the Spiral of Violence: Popular Jewish Resistance in Roman Palestine (San Francisco: Harper & Row, 1987), 184-190; ; idem, “‘My Name Is Legion’: Spirit Possession and Exorcism in Roman Palestine,” in Experientia, Volume 1; Inquiry into Religious Experience in Early Judaism and Christianity (ed. Frances Flannery, Colleen Shantz, and Rodney A. Werline; Leiden: Brill, 2008), 41-57.
  • [41] On the connection between demons and illness in the “Plea of Deliverance,” see the comments of Menahem Kister, “Demons, Theology and Abraham’s Covenant (CD 16:4-6 and Related Texts),” in The Dead Sea Scrolls At Fifty (ed. Robert A. Kugler and Eileen M. Schuller; Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1999), 167-181, esp. 170.
  • [42] In his account of King Solomon’s reign, Josephus links the power to perform exorcisms with the ability to heal:

    παρέσχε δ᾿ αὐτῷ μαθεῖν ὁ θεὸς καὶ τὴν κατὰ τῶν δαιμόνων τέχνην εἰς ὠφέλειαν καὶ θεραπείαν τοῖς ἀνθρώποις· ἐπῳδάς τε συνταξάμενος αἷς παρηγορεῖται τὰ νοσήματα καὶ τρόπους ἐξορκώσεων κατέλιπεν, οἷς οἱ ἐνδούμενοι τὰ δαιμόνια ὡς μηκέτ᾿ ἐπανελθεῖν ἐκδιώκουσι.

    And God granted him [i.e., Solomon—DNB and JNT] knowledge of the art used against demons for the benefit and healing of men. He also composed incantations by which illnesses are relieved, and left behind forms of exorcisms with which those possessed by demons drive them out, never to return. (Ant. 8:43; Loeb)

  • [43] On the possibility that a demon was the cause of the fever in the story of Shimon’s mother-in-law, see Healing Shimon’s Mother-in-law, Comment to L18.
  • [44] The construction ὥστε + infinitive is the LXX translation of an infinitive construct in Gen. 1:15 (ὥστε φαίνειν = לְהָאִיר)‎; Gen. 1:17 (ὥστε φαίνειν = לְהָאִיר); Gen. 9:15 (ὥστε ἐξαλεῖψαι = לְשַׁחֵת); Gen. 15:7 (ὥστε δοῦναι = לָתֶת); Gen. 23:8 (ὥστε θάψαι = לִקְבֹּר)‎; Gen. 34:22 (ὥστε εἶναι = לִהְיוֹת)‎; Gen. 34:30 (ὥστε πονηρόν με εἶναι = לְהַבְאִישֵׁנִי)‎; Gen. 45:27 (ὥστε ἀναλαβεῖν = לָשֵׂאת); Exod. 5:2 (ὥστε ἐξαποστεῖλαι = לְשַׁלַּח); Exod. 6:4 (ὥστε δοῦναι = לָתֵת); Exod. 6:13 (ὥστε ἐξαποστεῖλαι = לְהוֹצִיא); Exod. 7:24 (ὥστε πιεῖν = לִשְׁתּוֹת)‎; Exod. 12:4 (ὥστε μὴ ἱκανοὺς εἶναι εἰς πρόβατον = מִהְיֹת מִשֶּׂה); Exod. 12:42 (ὥστε ἐξαγαγεῖν αὐτούς = לְהוֹצִיאָם); Exod. 23:2 (ὥστε ἐκκλῖναι = לְהַטֹּת); Exod. 25:27 (ὥστε αἴρειν = לָשֵׂאת); Exod. 29:1 (ὥστε ἱερατεύειν = לְכַהֵן); Exod. 29:36 (ὥστε ἁγιάσαι αὐτό = לְקַדְּשׁוֹ); Exod. 29:42 (ὥστε λαλῆσαί = לְדַבֵּר); Exod. 30:4 (ὥστε αἴρειν = לָשֵׂאת)‎; Exod. 30:18 (ὥστε νίπτεσθαι = לְרָחְצָה);‎ Exod. 30:38 (ὥστε ὀσφραίνεσθαι = לְהָרִיחַ); Exod. 36:2 (ὥστε συντελεῖν = לַעֲשׂת)‎; Exod. 36:10 (ὥστε συνυφᾶναι = לַעֲשׂוֹת [Heb. 39:3]); Exod. 36:38 (ὥστε ἐπικεῖσθαι = לָתֵת [Heb. 39:31]); Exod. 38:4 (ὥστε αἴρειν = לָשֵׂאת [Heb. 37:5]); Exod. 38:10 (ὥστε αἴρειν = לָשֵׂאת [Heb. 37:14]); Exod. 39:12 (ὥστε λειτουργεῖν = לְשָׁרֵת [Heb. 39:1]); Exod. 40:15 (ὥστε εἶναι = לִהְיֹת); Lev. 5:22 (ὥστε ἁμαρτεῖν = לַחֲטֹא); Lev. 7:30 (ὥστε ἐπιθεῖναι = לְהָנִיף)‎; Lev. 8:34 (ὥστε ἐξιλάσασθαι = לְכַפֵּר); Lev. 14:21 (ὥστε ἐξιλάσασθαι = לְכַפֵּר)‎; Lev. 15:32 (ὥστε μιανθῆναι = לְטָמְאָה)‎; Lev. 16:10 (ὥστε ἀποστεῖλαι = לְשַׁלַּח); Lev. 17:4 (ὥστε ποιῆσαι = לְהַקְרִיב); Lev. 20:5 (ὥστε ἐκπορνεύειν = לִזְנוֹת); Lev. 20:6 (ὥστε ἐκπορνεῦσαι = לִזְנוֹת); Lev. 22:33 (ὥστε εἶναι = לִהְיוֹת); Lev. 23:37 (ὥστε προσενέγκαι = לְהַקְרִיב); Lev. 25:28 (ὥστε ἀποδοῦναι = הָשִׁיב)‎; Lev. 25:38 (ὥστε εἶναι = לִהְיוֹת); Lev. 26:15 (ὥστε ὑμᾶς μὴ ποιεῖν = לְבִלְתִּי עֲשׂוֹת); Lev. 26:15 (ὥστε διασκεδάσαι = לְהַפְרְכֶם); Lev. 26:44 (ὥστε ἐξαναλῶσαι αὐτοὺς = לְכַלֹּתָם); Num. 5:8 (ὥστε ἀποδοῦναι = לְהָשִׁיב); Num. 7:1 (ὥστε ἀναστῆσαι = לְהָקִים)‎; Num. 8:11 (ὥστε ἐργάζεσθαι = לַעֲבֹד); Deut. 4:35 (ὥστε εἰδῆσαι = לָדַעַת)‎; Deut. 5:15 (ὥστε φυλάσσεσθαι = לַעֲשׂוֹת)‎; Deut. 5:29 (ὥστε φοβεῖσθαί = לְיִרְאָה); Deut. 12:20 (ὥστε φαγεῖν = לֶאֱכֹל); Deut. 28:55 (ὥστε δοῦναι = מִתֵּת); Josh. 8:3 (ὥστε ἀναβῆναι = לַעֲלוֹת); Josh. 10:14 (ὥστε ἐπακοῦσαι = לִשְׁמֹעַ); Josh. 22:23 (ὥστε ἀποστῆναι = לָשׁוּב); Josh. 22:23 (ὥστε ἀναβιβάσαι = לְהַעֲלוֹת); Josh. 22:23 (ὥστε ποιῆσαι = לַעֲשׂוֹת); Josh. 22:29 (ὥστε οἰκοδομῆσαι = לִבְנוֹת)‎; Josh. 24:16 (ὥστε λατρεύειν = לַעֲבֹד); Judg. 3:1 (ὥστε πειράσαι = לְנַסּוֹת); Judg. 3:4 (ὥστε πειράσαι = לְנַסּוֹת); Judg. 7:2 (ὥστε μὴ παραδοῦναι με = מִתִּתִּי); Judg. 9:24 (ὥστε ἀποκτεῖναι = לַהֲרֹג); Judg. 16:5 (ὥστε ταπεινῶσαι αὐτόν = לְעַנֹּתוֹ); Ruth 4:5 (ὥστε ἀναστῆσαι = לְהָקִים)‎; 1 Kgdms. 10:9 (ὥστε ἐπιστραφῆναι = כְּהַפְנֹתוֹ [Heb. 1 Sam. 10:9])‎; 2 Kgdms. 13:2 (ὥστε ἀρρωστεῖν = לְהִתְחַלּוֹת [Heb. 2 Sam. 13:2])‎; 2 Kgdms. 14:7 (ὥστε μὴ θέσθαι = לְבִלְתִּי שִׂום [Heb. 2 Sam. 14:7])‎; 2 Chr. 6:6 (ὥστε εἶναι = לִהְיוֹת); Ps. 36:8 (ὥστε πονηρεύεσθαι = לְהָרֵעַ); Prov. 30:14 (ὥστε ἀναλίσκειν καὶ κατεσθίειν = לֶאֱכֹל); Isa. 10:2 (ὥστε εἶναι = לִהְיוֹת)‎; Isa. 16:12 (ὥστε προσεύξασθαι = לְהִתְפַּלֵּל); Isa. 33:19 (ὥστε μὴ ἀκοῦσαι = מִשְּׁמוֹעַ); Jer. 32:28 (ὥστε πιεῖν = לִשְׁתּוֹת); Dan. 1:4 (ὥστε εἶναι = לַעֲמֹד).
  • [45] The following table shows all the instances of ὥστε + infinitive in the Gospel of Matthew and their Markan and Lukan parallels (if any):

    Matt. 8:24 TT = Mark 4:37 (cf. Luke 8:23)
    Matt. 8:28 TT (cf. Mark 5:4; Luke 8:[–])
    Matt. 10:1 TT (cf. Mark 6:7; Luke 9:1)
    Matt. 12:22 TT (cf. Mark 9:33; Luke 11:14)
    Matt. 13:2 TT = Mark 4:1 (cf. Luke 8:4)
    Matt. 13:32 TT = Mark 4:32 (cf. Luke 13:19)
    Matt. 13:54 TT (cf. Mark 6:2; Luke 4:22)
    Matt. 15:31 Mk-Mt (cf. Mark 7:37)
    Matt. 24:24 TT (cf. Mark 13:22; Luke 21:[–])
    Matt. 27:1 TT (cf. Mark 15:1; Luke 22:66)
    Matt. 27:14 TT = Mark 15:5 (cf. Luke23:[–])

    TT = verse has parallels in all three Synoptic Gospels; Mk-Mt = Markan-Matthean pericope

    From the above presentation we see that the author of Matthew sometimes copied ὥστε + infinitive from Mark but more frequently either added ὥστε + infinitive on his own initiative or on the basis of Anth. It is significant that Matthew’s use of ὥστε + infinitive never finds support in the Gospel of Luke.

  • [46] Partially quoted in Sending the Twelve: “The Harvest Is Plentiful” and “A Flock Among Wolves”, Comment to L46.
  • [47] The verb ἐκβάλλειν occurs 96xx in LXX, 78 of those instances occurring in books from MT. Of the 78 instances of ἐκβάλλειν where we have an underlying Hebrew verb, that verb is from the root ג-ר-ש‎ 36xx: pi‘el 29xx (Gen. 3:24; 4:14; 21:10; Exod. 2:17; 6:1; 10:11; 11:1; 23:28, 29, 30, 31; 33:2; Num. 22:6, 11; Deut. 33:27; Josh. 24:12, 18; Judg. 6:9; 9:41; 11:2, 7; 1 Kgdms. 26:19; 3 Kgdms. 2:27; 1 Chr. 17:21; 2 Chr. 20:11; Ps. 77[78]:55; 79[80]:9; Prov. 22:10; Hos. 9:15); pa‘al (qal) 6xx (Exod. 34:11; Lev. 21:7, 14; 22:13; Num. 30:10; Ezek. 44:22); pu‘al 1x (Exod. 12:39).
  • [48] Here י-צ-א appears in the pa‘al stem because the spirit expresses its own intention to go out, whereas in exorcism contexts spirits are forced to go out, which is expressed with the hif‘il stem.
  • [49] See Avot de-Rabbi Natan, Version A, §12 (ed. Schechter, 50), §15 (ed. Schechter, 61) (2xx).
  • [50] We do, however, find a story in Sifre Deut. §305 (ed. Finkelstein, 326) ∥ Avot de-Rabbi Natan, Version A, §12 (ed. Schechter, 50) in which Moses rebuked (גָּעַר) the Angel of Death and the Angel of Death departed (יָצָא; Sifre Deut.) or Moses drove him out (הוֹצִיאוֹ; Avot de-Rabbi Natan).
  • [51] The Aramaic cognate root ג-ע-ר became a technical term for excorcism. See Jan Joosten, “The Verb גער ‘to Exorcise’ in Qumran Aramaic and Beyond,” Dead Sea Discoveries 21 (2014): 347-355. In the Gospels ἐπιτιμᾶν (epitiman, “to rebuke”) the Greek equivalent of גָּעַר (“rebuke”) is prominent in exorcism narratives. On ἐπιτιμᾶν as the equivalent of גָּעַר, see Healing Shimon’s Mother-in-law, Comment to L18.
  • [52] See Bovon, 1:344 n. 13.
  • [53] The Hebrew language delights in using doublets when in other languages, including Greek, a single word would suffice. In the specific case of “sickness” we frequently find חֳלִי (oli, “sickness”) paired with a synonym such as מַדְוֶה (madveh, “disease”; Deut. 7:15), מַכָּה (makāh, “injury”; Deut. 28:59, 61; Jer. 6:7), מַכְאוֹב (mach’ōv, “pain”; Isa. 53:3, 4), מָזוֹר (māzōr, “wound”; Hos. 5:13), or קֶצֶף (qetzef, “anger”; Eccl. 5:16).
  • [54] In LXX θεραπεύειν translates a Hebrew word in 2 Kgdms. 19:25 (עָשָׂה); Esth. 2:19 (יָשַׁב);‎ 6:10 (יָשַׁבחִלָּה);‎ 29:6 (בִּקֵּשׁ); Isa. 54:17 (עֶבֶד).
  • [55] The most common verb for “heal” in LXX is ἰᾶσθαι (iasthai) which usually translates the root ר-פ-א.
  • [56] For examples of רִפֵּא in the Mishnah, see m. Ket. 4:9 (2xx); m. Ned. 4:4; m. Bab. Kam. 8:1 (3xx). The only pa‘al example occurs in m. Sanh. 10:1 in a biblical quotation. There are, indeed, several examples in the Mishnah of the pa‘al participle רוֹפֵא, but these are used as a substantive meaning “physician.”
  • [57] On the Jewish perception in the Second Temple period that the exile had yet to be ended, see Michael A. Knibb, “The Exile in the Literature of the Intertestamental Period,” Heythrop Journal 17.3 (1976): 253-272.
  • [58] In the Second Temple period Jews traced their ancestry to the tribes of Judah, Benjamin or Levi. See Choosing the Twelve, Comment to L10-11.
  • [59] On the link between Jesus’ healing miracles and his understanding of Israel’s redemption, see Barry L. Blackburn, “The Miracles of Jesus,” in The Cambridge Companion to Miracles (ed. Graham H. Twelftree; Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2011), 113-130, esp. 120-124.
  • [60] Note that the two instances of ἀναδεικνύειν (anadeiknūein, “to appoint”) in NT occur in Luke-Acts (Luke 10:1; Acts 1:24). In LXX ἀναδεικνύειν occurs 18xx (1 Esd. 1:32, 35, 41, 44; 2:2; 8:23; 2 Macc. 2:8; 9:14, 23, 25; 10:11; 14:12, 26; 3 Macc. 2:14; 6:8; Hab. 3:2; Dan. 1:11, 20). All but three of these instances are in books composed in Greek, and only one instance of ἀναδεικνύειν corresponds to a word in the underlying Hebrew text (Dan. 1:11). As a general rule, compound verbs like ἀναδεικνύειν are indicative of less Hebraic, more sophisticated Greek. Probably ἀναδεικνύειν in Luke 10:1 comes not from a source, but from Luke’s own pen.
  • [61] The number seventy-two is quite rare in LXX. Seventy-two cattle are to be set aside as the LORD’s tribute in Num. 31:38, and in 1 Esd. 8:63 seventy-two lambs are mentioned as an offering. Seventy appears more frequently and as a more significant number in LXX: Israel had seventy elders (Exod. 24:1, 9; Num. 11:16, 24-25); seventy souls went down to Egypt (Deut. 10:22); Gideon had seventy sons (Judg. 8:30; 9:18, 24, 56), as did Ahab (4 Kgdms. 10:1, 6-7); a normal lifespan was considered to be seventy years (Ps. 89[90]:10); and there were seventy years during which the Temple lay in ruins (2 Chr. 36:21; 1 Esd. 1:55; Jer. 36:10; Dan. 9:2). As Aland argued (Metzger, 151), given the prominence of the number seventy in the biblical tradition, it is easy to understand why seventy-two in Luke 10:1 might have been changed to seventy by later scribes (see also Marshall, 414-415; Nolland, Luke, 2:546; Safrai and Tomson, “Paul’s ‘Collection for the Saints,’” 182 n. 163). Nevertheless, the instances where the number seventy becomes seventy-two and vice versa in various traditions are striking. For example, the seventy names in the table of nations in Gen. 10 in MT expands to seventy-two names in LXX. According to MT, Adonibezek subjugated seventy kings (Judg. 1:7), but Josephus (Ant. 5:123) and some LXX manuscripts have seventy-two. According to Let. Aris. §50 and Jos., Ant. 12:39 there were seventy-two translators of the Septuagint, but in Ant. 12:57 and Justin Martyr, Hortatory Address to the Greeks chpt. 13, the number is seventy. What was it about the numbers seventy and seventy-two that caused the ancients so much confusion?
  • [62] The tradition that there were seventy-two translators of the Septuagint explicitly links this number to the tribes of Israel (Let. Aris. §47-50; Jos., Ant. 12:39).
  • [63] We find ἄρχειν + infinitive in Mark 1:45; 2:23; 4:1; 5:17, 20; 6:2, 7, 34, 55; 8:11, 31, 32; 10:28, 32, 41, 47; 11:15; 12:1; 13:5; 14:19, 33, 65, 69, 71; 15:8, 18. All of these appear in Triple Tradition pericopae with the exception of Mark 6:55 (cf. Matt. 14:35) and Mark 15:18 (cf. Matt. 27:29). On the use of ἄρχειν + infinitive in Mark, see C. H. Turner, “Marcan Usage: Notes, Critical and Exegetical, on the Second Gospel VIII Auxiliary and Quasi-auxiliary Verbs,” Journal of Theological Studies 28 (1927): 349-362, esp. 352-353; Taylor, 48, 63-64; Joshua N. Tilton and David N. Bivin, “LOY Excursus: Catalog of Markan Stereotypes and Possible Markan Pick-ups,” under the entry for Mark 1:45. On the use of ἄρχειν + infinitive in the Synoptic Gospels generally, see Randall Buth and Brian Kvasnica, “Critical Notes on the VTS” (JS1, 259-317, esp. 261-268).
  • [64] The two instances of Lukan-Markan agreement to use ἄρχειν + infinitive are in Mark 11:15 = Luke 19:45; Mark 12:1 = Luke 20:9.
  • [65] The six instances of Markan-Matthean agreement to use ἄρχειν + infinitive are in Mark 2:23 = Matt. 12:1; Mark 8:31 = Matt. 16:21; Mark 8:32 = Matt. 16:22; Mark 14:19 = Matt. 26:22; Mark 14:33 = Matt. 26:37; Mark 14:71 = Matt. 26:74.
  • [66] Of the four instances in Matthew of ἄρχειν + infinitive that do not have the support of Mark or Luke, one appears in a TT context (Matt. 4:17), one appears in a DT context (Matt. 11:20), one appears in a Mark-Matt. context (Matt. 14:30), and one appears in a unique Matthean pericope (Matt. 18:24).
  • [67] See Buth and Kvasnica, “Critical Notes on the VTS” (JS1, 265).
  • [68] We find ἄρχειν + infinitive in Luke 3:8; 4:21; 5:21; 7:15, 24, 38, 49; 9:12; 11:29, 53; 12:1, 45; 13:25, 26; 14:9, 18, 29, 30; 15:14, 24; 19:37, 45; 20:9; 21:28; 23:2, 30.
  • [69] Luke used ἄρχειν + infinitive in TT contexts without the agreement of Mark or Matthew in Luke 4:21; 5:21; 7:38, 49; 9:12; 11:29; 12:1; 13:25, 26; 19:37; 21:28; 23:2, 30. Luke used ἄρχειν + infinitive in DT without Matthew’s agreement in Luke 3:8; 11:53; 14:18. Luke used ἄρχειν + infinitive in unique Lukan pericopae in Luke 7:15; 14:9, 29, 30; 15:14, 24.
  • [70] The six instances of ἄρχειν + infinitive in Acts are: Acts 1:1; 2:4; 11:15; 18:26; 24:2; 27:35.
  • [71] The Lukan-Matthean agreements against Mark’s use of ἄρχειν + infinitive are Luke 8:37 = Matt. 8:34 against Mark 5:17; Luke 9:2 = Matt. 10:5 against Mark 6:7; Luke 18:28 = Matt. 19:27 against Mark 10:28; Luke 18:31 = Matt. 20:17 against Mark 10:32; Luke 18:37-38 = Matt. 20:30 against Mark 10:47; Luke 21:8 = Matt. 24:4 against Mark 13:5; Luke 22:58 = Matt. 26:71 against Mark 14:69.
  • [72] See Buth and Kvasnica, “Critical Notes on the VTS” (JS1, 264). Examples of ἄρχειν + infinitive in the writings of Philo and Josephus are numerous. In the writings of Philo we find ἤρξατο ποιεῖν (Leg. 1:18); ἤρξατο μετρεῖν (Cher. 31); ἤρξατο εἶναι (Gig. 66); ἤρξατο διαιρεῖν (Her. 134); ἤρξατο κατασκήπτειν (Mos. 1:176); ἤρξατο προφητεύειν (Mos. 2:69); ἤρξατο προσφέρειν (Decal. 13); ἤρξατο φέρεσθαι (Spec. 2:142; 4:85); ἤρξατο μεταβάλλειν (Virt. 76); ἤρξατο διοίγνυσθαι (Praem. 37); ἤρξατο κονίεσθαι (Flacc. 104); ἤρξατο λωφᾶν (Legat. 18); ἤρξατο πρυτανεύειν (Legat. 48). In the writings of Josephus we find ἤρξατο σωφρονίζειν (J.W. 2:493); ἤρξατο λέγειν (J.W. 6:327; Ant. 7:289; 8:3, 276, 295; 11:38, 43, 55, 300); ἤρξατο ὑποβαίνειν (Ant. 1:90); ἤρξατο κατηγορεῖν (Ant. 1:314); ἤρξατο προσκυνεῖν (Ant. 7:95); ἤρξατο πυνθάνεσθαι (Ant. 7:268; 11:160); ἤρξατο οἰκοδομεῖσθαι (Ant. 8:62); ἤρξατο θρησκεύειν (Ant. 8:192); ἤρξατο εὔχεσθαι (Ant. 8:342); ἤρξατο τιμᾶν (Ant. 9:256); ἤρξατο δεῖσθαι (Ant. 11:265); ἤρξατο ποιεῖσθαι (Ant. 12:110); ἤρξατο διαφθείρειν (Ant. 13:120); ἤρξατο νοσεῖν (Ant. 18:25); ἤρξατο πολιορκεῖν (Ag. Ap. 1:159).
  • [73] The omission of αὐτοὺς in Vaticanus’ text of Luke 10:1 is probably a copyist’s error. N-A consider αὐτοὺς to be so secure that it is not even put in brackets.
  • [74] Jesus sent two disciples to procure a donkey in advance of his entry to Jerusalem (Matt. 21:1; Mark 11:1; Luke 19:29), and two disciples to make preparations for eating the Passover lamb (Mark 14:13; Luke 22:8; cf. Matt. 26:19). See Preparations for Eating Passover Lamb, Comment to L11.
  • [75] See Flusser, Jesus, 48. John the Baptist sent two of his disciples to question Jesus (Luke 7:18; cf. Matt. 11:2). See Yohanan the Immerser’s Question, Comment to L9. For examples of rabbinic sages sending out disciples in pairs, cf. m. Sot. 1:3; m. Mak. 2:5.
  • [76] According to Plummer (Luke, 272), “The reading ἀνὰ δύο δύο (B K) seems to be a combination of ἀνὰ δύο and δύο δύο.”
  • [77] Note, however, that Milligan cited a third-century C.E. papyrus (P. Oxy. 886) with the construction κατά δύο δύο as evidence that Luke’s ἀνὰ δύο δύο (“two by two”) is not necessarily a Hebraism. See George Milligan, Selections from the Greek Papyri (2d ed.; Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1912), 111. Cf. Moulton-Howard, 439; Moule, Idiom, 182.
  • [78] On the repetition of a number in Hebrew to express distribution (e.g., “two by two” or “two at a time”), see Segal, 197. Cf. שָׁלוֹשׁ שָׁלּוֹשׁ (“three each”) in m. Rosh Hash. 4:6; אַרְבַּע אַרְבַּע (“four by four”), [חָמֵשׁ [חמשׁ‎ (“five by five”), שֵׁשׁ שֵׁשׁ (“six by six”) and שֶׁבַע שֶׁבַע (“seven by seven”) in m. Kil. 5:5; שְׁמוֹנֶה שְׁמוֹנֶה (“eight by eight”) in m. Kil. 4:9; תשע תשע (“nine each”) in y. Taan. 4:5 [24b]; עֶשֶׂר עֶשֶׂר (“ten at a time”) 2xx in m. Men. 6:5.
  • [79] We find πρὸ προσώπου σου in Matt. 11:10; Mark 1:2; Luke 7:27, evidently a hybrid quotation of Exod. 23:20 and Mal. 3:1.
  • [80] For a critique of the view that Luke attempted to imitate LXX style, see Raymond A. Martin, Studies in the Life and Ministry of the Historical Jesus (New York: University Press of America, 1995), 3-5.
  • [81] We find that πρὸ προσώπου + personal pronoun also occurs 5xx in books for which we have no Hebrew text, but which may have been composed in Hebrew (Jdt. 3:3; 10:13; 1 Macc. 3:22; 5:7, 43). In 3 Kgdms. 12:10 and Jer. 30:27 (= 49:32 MT), there is no underlying Hebrew for πρὸ προσώπου + personal pronoun in MT. In these cases LXX may reflect a different recension of the Hebrew text.
  • [82] Cf., e.g., Exod. 23:20; 32:34; 33:2; Num. 27:17 (2xx); Deut. 1:21, 30; 2:31, 33; 9:3; 22:6; 23:15; 28:7; 30:1, 15, 19; 31:3 (2xx); 3 Kgdms. 12:8; 2 Chr. 19:11; Ps. 56[57]:7; Eccl. 2:26; 9:1; Mic. 2:13 (2xx); 6:4; Joel 2:3, 10; Hab. 3:5; Zech. 3:4, 8; Mal. 3:1; Isa. 62:11; Jer. 9:12; 15:1, 19; 21:8; Ezek. 4:1; 8:11; 14:1; 16:18, 19; 20:1; 22:30; 23:24; 23:41; 36:17; 44:15.
  • [83] Cf., e.g., Exod. 34:11, 24; Lev. 18:24; Num. 33:52; Deut. 2:21; 4:38; 6:19; 8:20; 9:4; Job 23:17.
  • [84] In LXX πρὸ προσώπου + personal pronoun translates עַל פְּנֵי + pronominal suffix in Exod. 34:6 and Deut. 5:7.
  • [85] Examples of עִיר וָעִיר with the meaning “every city” appear in Esth. 8:11, 17; 9:28; Ezra 10:14; 2 Chr. 11:12; 28:25; 31:19; Sir. 10:3; 11QTa [11Q19] XLVIII, 14; t. Shek. 3:16; t. Sanh. 3:5[10].
  • [86] We find כְּפָרִים וַעֲיָירוֹת (“villages and cities”) 4xx in the Mishnah (m. Meg. 1:1 [4xx]), but always in that order, which is opposite of Luke’s order, and always in the plural, also unlike Luke 10:1. Cf. 1 Chr. 27:25, where we read וְעַל הָאֹצָרוֹת בַּשָּׂדֶה בֶּעָרִים וּבַכְּפָרִים וּבַמִּגְדָּלוֹת יְהוֹנָתָן בֶּן־עֻזִּיָּהוּ (“and over the treasuries in the field, in the cities, and in the villages and in the towers: Yehonatan ben Uziyahu”). Here, too, the plural number and word order is different from Luke 10:1.
  • [87] The construction עָתִיד + infinitive is well attested in the Mishnah (see Segal, 167), but in narrative contexts such as in L33 we expect a more biblical style of Hebrew and, more importantly, the phrase עָתִיד לָבוֹא (‘ātid lāvō’) invariably means “future to come,” not “about to enter.”
  • [88] In printed editions of the Mishnah and in the Cambridge MS we find פָּרָה הָעוֹמֶדֶת לֵילֵד (“a cow that is about to give birth”) in m. Bab. Kam. 9:1. However, the Kaufmann and Parma MSS have פָּרָה [[מ]]עוּבֶּרֶת לֵילֵד (“a cow that is big from pregnancy”). There are also variant readings in t. Bab. Kam. 6:9[20] between עתיד לחתכה and עומד לחתכה (both phrases meaning “about to chop off”). In this case, too, the former reading is to be preferred since it stands in parallel with עתיד לקצוץ (“about to cut down”) in the same passage. The variant readings do not prove that the construction עָמַד + infinitive was current in the period of the Mishnah or Tosefta. They only establish that the construction was current in the time of the copyists who were responsible for the variant readings.
  • [89] Note, too, that in all instances of the construction עָמַד + infinitive that we have identified, the root ע-מ-ד always appears as a participle in sentences where the point of view is the present tense, whether in statements of fact (“you are destined to stumble”) or in descriptions of hypothetical scenarios (“grain that is about to be harvested”), which is quite different from narration of past events as in L33.
  • [90] On editorial features characteristic of the Gospel of Mark, see “LOY Excursus: Mark’s Editorial Style.”
  • [91]
    Sending the Twelve: Commissioning
    Luke’s Anth. Version Anthology’s Wording (Reconstructed)
    μετὰ δὲ ταῦτα ἀνέδειξεν ὁ κύριος ἑτέρους ἑβδομήκοντα δύο καὶ ἀπέστειλεν ἀνὰ δύο δύο πρὸ προσώπου αὐτοῦ εἰς πᾶσαν πόλιν καὶ τόπον οὗ ἤμελλεν αὐτὸς ἔρχεσθαι καὶ προσκαλεσάμενος τοὺς δώδεκα ἀποστόλους αὐτοῦ ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς ἐξουσίαν ἐπὶ πάντα τὰ δαιμόνια ὥστε ἐκβάλλειν αὐτὰ καὶ θεραπεύειν πᾶσαν νόσον καὶ πᾶσαν μαλακίαν καὶ ἀπέστειλεν αὐτοὺς δύο δύο πρὸ προσώπου αὐτοῦ εἰς πᾶσαν πόλιν καὶ πόλιν οὗ ἤμελλεν αὐτὸς ἔρχεσθαι
    Total Words: 26 Total Words: 40
    Total Words Identical to Anth.: 15 Total Words Taken Over in Luke: 15
    Percentage Identical to Anth.: 57.69% Percentage of Anth. Represented in Luke: 37.50%
    Sending the Twelve: Commissioning
    Luke’s FR Version Anthology’s Wording (Reconstructed)
    συγκαλεσάμενος δὲ τοὺς δώδεκα ἔδωκεν δύναμιν αὐτοῖς καὶ ἐξουσίαν ἐπὶ πάντα τὰ δαιμόνια καὶ νόσους θεραπεύειν καὶ ἀπέστειλεν αὐτοὺς κηρύσσειν τὴν βασιλείαν τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ ἰᾶσθαι καὶ προσκαλεσάμενος τοὺς δώδεκα ἀποστόλους αὐτοῦ ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς ἐξουσίαν ἐπὶ πάντα τὰ δαιμόνια ὥστε ἐκβάλλειν αὐτὰ καὶ θεραπεύειν πᾶσαν νόσον καὶ πᾶσαν μαλακίαν καὶ ἀπέστειλεν αὐτοὺς δύο δύο πρὸ προσώπου αὐτοῦ εἰς πᾶσαν πόλιν καὶ πόλιν οὗ ἤμελλεν αὐτὸς ἔρχεσθαι
    Total Words: 26 Total Words: 40
    Total Words Identical to Anth.: 14 Total Words Taken Over in Luke: 14
    Percentage Identical to Anth.: 53.85% Percentage of Anth. Represented in Luke: 35.00%

  • [92]
    Sending the Twelve: Commissioning
    Mark’s Version Anthology’s Wording (Reconstructed)
    καὶ προσκαλεῖται τοὺς δώδεκα καὶ ἤρξατο αὐτοὺς ἀποστέλλειν δύο δύο καὶ ἐδίδου αὐτοῖς ἐξουσίαν τῶν πνευμάτων τῶν ἀκαθάρτων καὶ προσκαλεσάμενος τοὺς δώδεκα ἀποστόλους αὐτοῦ ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς ἐξουσίαν ἐπὶ πάντα τὰ δαιμόνια ὥστε ἐκβάλλειν αὐτὰ καὶ θεραπεύειν πᾶσαν νόσον καὶ πᾶσαν μαλακίαν καὶ ἀπέστειλεν αὐτοὺς δύο δύο πρὸ προσώπου αὐτοῦ εἰς πᾶσαν πόλιν καὶ πόλιν οὗ ἤμελλεν αὐτὸς ἔρχεσθαι
    Total Words: 18 Total Words: 40
    Total Words Identical to Anth.: 8 Total Words Taken Over in Mark: 8
    Percentage Identical to Anth.: 44.44% Percentage of Anth. Represented in Mark: 10.00%

  • [93]
    Sending the Twelve: Commissioning
    Matthew’s Version Anthology’s Wording (Reconstructed)
    καὶ προσκαλεσάμενος τοὺς δώδεκα μαθητὰς αὐτοῦ ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς ἐξουσίαν πνευμάτων ἀκαθάρτων ὥστε ἐκβάλλειν αὐτὰ καὶ θεραπεύειν πᾶσαν νόσον καὶ πᾶσαν μαλακίαν…. τούτους τοὺς δώδεκα ἀπέστειλεν ὁ Ἰησοῦς καὶ προσκαλεσάμενος τοὺς δώδεκα ἀποστόλους αὐτοῦ ἔδωκεν αὐτοῖς ἐξουσίαν ἐπὶ πάντα τὰ δαιμόνια ὥστε ἐκβάλλειν αὐτὰ καὶ θεραπεύειν πᾶσαν νόσον καὶ πᾶσαν μαλακίαν καὶ ἀπέστειλεν αὐτοὺς δύο δύο πρὸ προσώπου αὐτοῦ εἰς πᾶσαν πόλιν καὶ πόλιν οὗ ἤμελλεν αὐτὸς ἔρχεσθαι
    Total Words: 27 Total Words: 40
    Total Words Identical to Anth.: 19 Total Words Taken Over in Matt: 19
    Percentage Identical to Anth.: 70.37% Percentage of Anth. Represented in Matt.: 47.50%

  • [94] See Beare, Earliest, 125 §109; idem, “The Mission of the Disciples and the Mission Charge,” 12-13.
  • [95] Brown suggested that the author of Matthew made the Twelve “into a transparency for the members of Matthew’s own community,” and therefore omitted any details about the apostles’ mission that were not applicable to the conditions his readers faced. This included omitting the report of the apostles’ return, because for Matthew’s community the mission was still ongoing. See Schuyler Brown, “The Mission to Israel in Matthew’s Central Section,” Zeitschrift für die Neutestamentliche Wissenschaft 69.1 (1978): 73-90, esp. 74-75, 79.
  • [96] Click here to see an overview of the entire “Mission of the Twelve” complex.

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