Preparations for Eating the Passover Lamb

Articles, LOY Commentary

Careful analysis shows that a Hebraic source ultimately stands behind the Synoptic Gospels and that this source is best preserved in Luke. Luke’s version of the Preparations for Eating Passover Lamb preserves details—such as Jesus taking the initiative to send the two disciples, commanding the disciples to prepare the lamb, and using Hebraic idiom—that fit the cultural context of first-century Judaism.

Matt. 26:17-19; Mark 14:12-16; Luke 22:7-13

(Huck 234; Aland 308a; Crook 347a)[1]

Revised: 14 December 2022[2]

וַיָּבֹא יֹום חַג הַמַּצּוֹת וַיִּשְׁלַח אֶת פֶּטְרוֹס וְאֶת יוֹחָנָן לֵאמֹר לְכוּ וְהָכִינוּ לָנוּ אֶת הַפֶּסַח וַיֹּאמְרוּ לוֹ אֵיכָן אַתָּה רוֹצֶה שֶׁנָּכִין לְךָ לֶאֱכֹל אֶת הַפֶּסַח וַיֹּאמֶר לָהֶם הֲרֵי כְּשֶׁתִּכָּנְסוּ לָעִיר יִפְגַּע בָּכֶם אָדָם נֹשֵֹׂא כַּד מָיִם לְכוּ אַחֲרָיו לַבַּיִת שֶׁיִכָּנֵס לוֹ וְתֹאמְרוּ לְבַעַל הַבַּיִת אוֹמֵר לְךָ רַבֵּנוּ אֵיכָן הַחֶדֶר שֶׁבּוֹ אוֹכַל אֶת הַפֶּסַח עִם תַּלְמִידַי וְהוּא יַרְאֶה לָכֶם עֲלִיָּה גְּדוֹלָה מוּצַעַת שָׁם הָכִינוּ וַיֵּלְכוּ וַיָּכִינוּ אֶת הַפֶּסַח

The day of the holiday of Unleavened Bread arrived, so Yeshua sent Petros and Yohanan, instructing them: “Go prepare the Passover lamb for us.”

They asked him: “Where do you want us to make preparations for you to eat the lamb?”

“Listen,” he replied, “when you enter the city, you will meet a man carrying a water jar. Follow him. At the house he enters, say to the owner: ‘Our teacher asks: “Where is the dining room where I may eat the Passover lamb with my disciples?”’ He will take you upstairs to a large room with couches spread. There make the preparations.”

Going into the city, they prepared the lamb there.[3]






To view the reconstructed text of Preparations for Eating the Passover Lamb click on the link below:

Story Placement

Preparations for Eating the Passover Lamb appears in the same location in Matthew, Mark and Luke. We have entitled this section of the Hebrew Life of Yeshua “Passover.” At this point in the narrative Judas had already conspired with the chief priests to betray Jesus.

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

Conjectured Stages of Transmission

Triple_FR-Luke_Anth-MattPreparations for Eating the Passover Lamb is a Triple Tradition pericope. Matthew copied this pericope from Mark, but the Lukan-Matthean agreements against Mark indicate that at several points Matthew corrected Mark on the basis of his second source, the Anthology (Anth.). Mark took this pericope from Luke, but extensively rewrote the passage. It appears that Luke copied this pericope from the First Reconstruction (FR).

Crucial Issues

One of the most dramatic moments in Jesus’ life was the so-called “Last Supper,” the Passover meal that Jesus celebrated with his disciples in Jerusalem.[5] However, the celebratory meal[6] required considerable preparations in the preceding days, and especially on the day of the meal.[7] Here are some of the issues that the contents of this pericope raise:

  1. Is the Water Jar Carrier story a foreign element, a later addition to the pericope? Many authorities view the Water Jar Carrier episode as a later addition to the Gospel narrative because of the similarity between the Markan versions of the Water Jar Carrier and the Young Donkey stories (Mark 11:1-6),[8] and because the Water Jar Carrier episode is missing from Matthew’s account.[9] Are these scholars right to doubt the authenticity of the Water Jar Carrier story?
  2. Had Jesus, unbeknown to his disciples, previously made arrangements with a Jerusalem landlord to use one of his rooms, or did Jesus prophesy the meeting with the homeowner’s slave with divine foresight?
  3. Where was Jesus when he sent his disciples to make preparations? Were they sent after the lamb had already been slaughtered, or was slaughtering the lamb in the Temple part of the preparations they were intended to carry out?


Story Opening (L1-9)

L1 ἦλθεν δὲ ἡ ἡμέρα (Luke 22:7). In Hebrew, a “day” or “days” can “come.”[10] However, the construction ἔρχεσθαι + ἡ ἡμέρα that we find in Luke is rare.[11] We find the expression only one other time in NT, in Rev. 6:17: ἦλθεν ἡ ἡμέρα ἡ μεγάλη τῆς ὀργῆς αὐτῶν (“the great day of their wrath has come”; RSV). The construction ἔρχεσθαι + ἡ ἡμέρα is not found in LXX, Jos., Pseud. or Philo. The reverse order (ἡ ἡμέρα [in sing.] + ἔρχεσθαι) is also rare. In NT, LXX, Jos., Pseud. and Philo, it is found only in translations from Hebrew sources.[12] This Hebraism in the first line of Luke’s version of Preparations for Eating the Passover Lamb is an important clue to reconstructing the difficult opening lines of this pericope.

τῇ πρώτῃ ἡμέρᾳ (Mark 14:12). The combination πρώτη + ἡμέρα (“first day”) that we find in Mark occurs 3xx in NT (here, Acts 20:18 and Phil. 1:5); 2xx in LXX (1 Chr. 29:21 [τῆς πρώτης ἡμέρας = הַיוֹם הַהוּא]; Dan. [Theodotion] 10:12 [τῆς πρώτης ἡμέρας = הַיוֹם הָרִאשׁוֹן]); and 5xx in Josephus (Ant. 1:29; 5:22; 14:389; 15:358; J.W. 4:547). We find the reverse order (ἡμέρα + πρώτη) 17xx in LXX.[13] Josephus’ phrase καὶ τῇ πρώτῃ τῆς ἑορτῆς ἡμέρᾳ (“and on the first day of the feast [of Passover]”; Ant. 5:22; Loeb), except for word order, which is flexible in Greek, is almost identical to Mark’s καὶ τῇ πρώτῃ ἡμέρᾳ τῶν ἀζύμων (Mark 14:12). The similarity to the Greek phrase in Josephus may suggest that Mark’s phrase was composed in Greek and does not reflect a Hebrew Ur-text.

τῇ δὲ πρώτῃ (Matt. 26:17). Matthew’s opening is strongly influenced by Mark’s wording. However, Matthew omitted ἡμέρᾳ, found in Luke and Mark. In agreement with Luke against Mark, Matthew has δέ.

L2 τῶν ἀζύμων (Matt. 26:17; Mark 14:12; Luke 22:7). The term τὰ ἄζυμα (ta azūma, “the things unleavened,” “unleavened cakes/bread”) is used in Greek to refer to the Festival of Passover on which only unleavened bread is eaten. In LXX we always find ἡ ἑορτή τῶν ἀζύμων,[14] but outside LXX we sometimes find just τὰ ἄζυμα, as in Matt. 26:17; Mark 14:12; Luke 22:7 (L2) and Josephus, Ant. 3:250; J.W. 5:99.[15] The omission of ἑορτή in all three Synoptic Gospels suggests that the opening lines of this pericope suffered Greek redaction. Since none of the witnesses to the opening escaped Greek editorial activity, it is difficult to reconstruct the Hebrew Ur-text with certainty.[16]

חַג הַמַּצּוֹת (HR). This term appears 9xx in HB (Exod. 23:15; 34:18; Lev. 23:6; Deut. 16:16; Ezra 6:22; 2 Chr. 8:13; 30:13, 21; 35:17), always translated in LXX by ἡ ἑορτή τῶν ἀζύμων. (In Lev. 23:6, ἑορτή appears without the article: ἑορτὴ τῶν ἀζύμων.) Although ἑορτή is absent in the Synoptic Gospels and is not required in Greek (e.g., Jos., Ant. 3:250; J.W. 5:99), חַג is necessary in Hebrew.[17]

L1-2 τῇ πρώτῃ (ἡμέρᾳ) τῶν ἀζύμων / ἡ ἡμέρα τῶν ἀζύμων (Matt. 26:17; Mark 14:12; Luke 22:7). The “first day of Unleavened Bread” usually means the 15th of Nisan; however, preparations for the festival are not made on the 15th, but only until the end of the 14th. The 14th of Nisan may be included as one of the days of the festival when speaking of the Festival of Unleavened Bread because beginning on this day one’s house has to be leaven-free.[18] In Ant. 2:317 Josephus demonstrates that, when speaking loosely of the holiday, one might include the 14th: ἑορτὴν ἄγομεν ἐφ᾿ ἡμέρας ὀκτὼ τὴν τῶν ἀζύμων λεγομένην (“We keep for eight days a feast called the feast of unleavened bread”; Loeb).[19] Josephus creates further confusion about the length of the holiday elsewhere in his writings, e.g.: “On the fifteenth the Passover is followed up by the Feast of Unleavened bread, lasting seven days” (Ant. 3:249; Loeb); and again: “When the day of unleavened bread came round on the fourteenth of the month Xanthicus [corresponding to Nisan]” (J.W. 5:99; Loeb).

(HR) Reconstructing the opening lines of this pericope poses several thorny issues which cannot easily be resolved. Three reconstructions appear to be the strongest options:

  1. וַיָּבֹא חַג הַמַּצּוֹת. In this case we would accept Lindsey’s suggestion that Luke or FR added ἡ ἡμέρα in order to introduce the explanation in L3.[20]
  2. וַיָּבֹא יוֹם חַג הַמַּצּוֹת. In this case we would accept Luke’s Hebraic ἔρχεσθαι + ἡ ἡμέρα as a guide for reconstruction.
  3. וַיְהִי בַּיֹום הָרִאשֹׁון שֶׁלֶּחַג הַמַּצּוֹת. In this case we would reject Luke’s Hebraic ἔρχεσθαι + ἡ ἡμέρα in favor of Mark’s opening.[21] We find בַּיֹום הָרִאשֹׁון (“on the first day”) in numerous contexts in biblical and post-biblical Hebrew where a succession of days are enumerated, including the successive days of a feast.[22] The LXX equivalents of בַּיֹום הָרִאשֹׁון are ἡ ἡμέρα ἡ πρώτη (4xx)[23] ; τῇ ἡμέρᾳ τῇ πρώτῃ (4xx)[24] ; τῆς ἡμέρας τῆς πρώτης (1x)[25] ; ἐν τῇ ἡμέρᾳ τῇ πρώτῃ (1x).[26] Note should be taken of the rabbinic phrase וּבְיוֹם טוֹב הָרִאשׁוֹן שֶׁלַּפֶּסַח (“and on the first festive day [when work is prohibited] of Passover”; m. Taan. 1:2); cf. m. Maas. Sh. 5:6: עֶרֶב יוֹם טוֹב הָרִאשׁוֹן שֶלַּפֶּסַח (“evening of the first festive day of Passover”); m. Hag. 1:3: {בְּיוֹם טוֹב הָרִאשׁוֹן שֶׁלֶחָג {שלפסח (“on the first festive day of the feast [of Passover]”). The phrase חַג הַמַּצּוֹת does not occur in the Mishnah.[27]

Although Mark’s opening is, in many respects, attractive, it appears that Mark has simply reworked the opening lines he found in Luke. Luke’s opening, while showing signs of Greek redaction (most notably the absence of τῆς ἑορτῆς in L2), preserves a clear Hebraism (ἔρχεσθαι + ἡ ἡμέρα in L1). Outside the translation Greek of LXX and the strongly Hebraic book of Revelation, the combination of ἔρχεσθαι + ἡ ἡμέρα is unknown. Thus, Luke’s phrase looks like Hebraic Greek or even translation Greek. The author of Mark, who is known to improve the Greek of his sources,[28] may have seen Luke’s Hebraic ἦλθεν δὲ ἡ ἡμέρα and decided to remove the Hebraism. The author of Mark also loved to supply additional information, and it is possible that if he saw Luke’s “And the day of Unleavened Bread came, on which the Passover lamb is sacrificed,” Mark might have added “first day” to supply greater specificity.

The word order of Mark’s opening line (τῇ πρώτῃ ἡμέρᾳ) is un-Hebraic. In LXX πρώτη + ἡμέρα appears only twice, and only once as the translation of הַיוֹם הָרִאשׁוֹן (Dan. [TH] 10:12). By contrast, the reverse order ἡμέρα + πρώτη appears 17xx in LXX. Of these 17 occurrences, 10 are translations of בַּיוֹם הָרִאשׁוֹן (Exod. 12:15, 16; Lev. 23:7, 35, 39, 40; Num. 7:12; 28:18; Deut. 16:4; Judg. 20:22); 2 are translations of מִן הַיֹּום הָרִאשֹׁון (Dan. 10:12; 2 Esdr. 18:18); one is a translation of מִיוֹם הָרִאשׁוֹן (Exod. 12:15); one is a translation of בַּיָּמִים הָהֵם (2 Kgdms. 16:23); and one is a translation of [לַחֹדֶשׁ] בְּאֶחָד (2 Chr. 29:17). Thus Mark’s word order is decidedly Greek and therefore it is doubtful whether the author of Mark relied on a Hebrew Ur-text that read בַּיוֹם הָרִאשׁוֹן.

While it is possible to explain how an editor reading Luke’s opening lines might come up with a paraphrase such as Mark’s, it is difficult to explain how an editor who read Mark’s opening could have produced a version like Luke’s with a marked Hebraism. Such a scenario is particularly hard to imagine in the case of Luke, who usually transmitted his sources with such care. Therefore, although with due reservation, we have reconstructed with וַיָּבֹא יֹום חַג הַמַּצּוֹת, option 2 above.

L3 ᾗ ἔδει θύεσθαι τὸ πάσχα (Luke 22:7). An English translation yields, “on which [day] it had to be sacrificed the Passover,” that is, “the day on which the Passover lamb had to be sacrificed.” In the afternoon of the 14th of the Jewish month of Nisan, pilgrims who had “come up” to Jerusalem for the Festival of Passover brought their lambs to the Temple to be sacrificed. Unlike other offerings, the Passover lambs were slaughtered by the Israelite pilgrims themselves, not by the priests.[29] These lambs were then taken to a home inside the city,[30] where they were roasted and eaten by “companies” or “associations” (of 10 or more)[31] that evening (at the commencement of the 15th of Nisan, the first of the seven days of the Passover holiday) as part of the Passover meal.[32]

The phrase ᾗ ἔδει θύεσθαι τὸ πάσχα appears to be an explanation for non-Jewish readers, which was added by Luke (or, more likely, FR)[33] and then copied from Luke, with modifications, by Mark. Matthew omits the explanation.[34] Luke’s phrase here in L3 is un-Hebraic (see below), which suggests that it was composed in Greek.

In synoptic texts the words δεῖ and ἔδει (de/edei, “is needful/necessary,” “it was needful/necessary”) may sometimes reflect צָרִיךְ (tzārich, “have a need,” “is necessary”)[35] (e.g., Luke 2:49; 15:32; 19:5; 11:42 = Matt. 23:23), but more often, as probably here, ἔδει is a sign of Greek redaction (e.g., Luke 4:43; 13:33; 17:25; Matt. 17:10 = Mark 9:11).[36] The possibility of a Hebrew equivalent for ἔδει in Luke 22:7 (L3) is unlikely because at this point we are in narrative and should expect biblical narrative style for any conjectured Hebrew Ur-text.[37]

The verb θύειν (thūein, “sacrifice”) is usually the translation of זָבַח (zāvaḥ, “sacrifice”) in LXX. However, the passive of θύειν never occurs in LXX or in NT (of 14 occurrences) except for this one instance. This non-Hebraic passive infinitive form in Luke’s explanation about the Passover sacrifice lends additional support to our supposition that Luke, or more probably the First Reconstructor, composed the phrase appearing in L3.

ὅτε τὸ πάσχα ἔθυον (Mark 14:12) = ᾗ ἔδει θύεσθαι τὸ πάσχα (Luke 22:7). Mark’s ἔθυον might reflect a characteristic Hebrew 3rd per. plur. with an impersonal sense, thus preserving the Hebrew undertext (כשהיו שוחטים),[38] “it was customary to slaughter” (lit., “they were sacrificing”); however, this structure does not occur in HB, and since here we are in narrative, we would expect BH. However, given Mark’s tendency to rework his sources,[39] ὅτε τὸ πάσχα ἔθυον is more likely to be Mark’s replacement for Luke’s ᾗ ἔδει θύεσθαι τὸ πάσχα than the reflection of a Hebraic Ur-text. Notice Josephus’ words: “On the occasion of the feast called Passover, at which they sacrifice[40] from the ninth to the eleventh hour…” (J.W. 6:423; Loeb). The similarity between Mark’s explanation and that found in Josephus suggests that Mark’s reading in L3 was composed in Greek.

L4-5 προσῆλθον οἱ μαθηταὶ τῷ Ἰησοῦ λέγοντες (Matt. 26:17). First-century Jewish disciples joined themselves to a teacher indefinitely, usually until they themselves were qualified to train students. In many ways they were like slaves or indentured servants, and as such disciples rarely took the initiative.[41] Peter’s outburst, “Master, it is well that we are here; let us make three booths…” (Matt. 17:4; Mark 9:5; Luke 9:33), is exceptional, and Peter is immediately reprimanded by Heaven. Instead, disciples waited quietly, responsive to their master’s beck and call: “The eyes of slaves follow their master’s hand” (Ps. 123:2; JPS; cf. Luke 7:8; Matt. 8:9).[42] Luke’s version (see Luke 22:8; L10-15), according to which Jesus takes the initiative, is therefore to be preferred.

L4 προσῆλθον (Matt. 26:17). The verb προσέρχεσθαι appears 86xx in NT: 51 of these occurrences are in Matthew, 5 are in Mark, 8 are in Luke, 1 is in John, 5 are in the first half of Acts and 5 are in the second half of Acts. Here this verb, which appears with such high frequency in Matthew, seems to be an indication of Matthew’s editing. The verb appears 111xx in LXX and is usually (43xx) the translation of some form of קָרַב (qārav, “come near,” “approach”).[43] If there is Hebrew behind προσῆλθον—and this is doubtful since in L4-9 Matthew follows Mark’s deviation from Luke’s version (see below)—we should reconstruct with וַיִּקְרְבוּ for biblical style, and וַיִּגְּשׁוּ for MH style (see Bendavid, 61, 113, 127).

L7 ἀπελθόντες (Mark 14:12). The word ἀπελθόντες is significant: it is a Lukan-Matthean minor agreement of omission. Both Matthew and Luke reject the Markan addition of ἀπελθόντες.[44] It appears that the author of Mark, seeing ἀπελθόντες in Luke 22:13 (L49), picked up this participle and inserted it into the phrase ποῦ θέλεις ἑτοιμάσωμεν, replacing the participle πορευθέντες that he saw in Luke 22:8 (L13), which also precedes a form of ἐτοιμάζειν. Conspicuously, in this five-word phrase, ποῦ θέλεις ἑτοιμάσωμέν σοι φαγεῖν, Matthew (Matt. 26:17) agrees with Luke (Luke 22:9) against Mark: 1) to omit the participle ἀπελθόντες; 2) to add the personal pronoun σοί; and 3) to use the infinitive φαγεῖν (against Mark’s ἵνα φάγῃς)!

L8 ἵνα φάγῃς (Mark 14:12). The conjunction ἵνα followed by a verb in the subjunctive mood is more than twice as frequent in Mark as in Matthew and Luke: 3.59 hits per 1,000 words, in contrast to Matthew’s 1.49 hits per 1,000 words and Luke’s 1.58 hits per 1,000 words.[45] This is further reason to prefer the Lukan-Matthean minor agreement, φαγεῖν, over Mark’s ἵνα φάγῃς. Perhaps the ἵνα φάγωμεν (ἵνα + subjunctive of ἐσθίειν) in Luke 22:8 (L15) influenced Mark to write ἵνα φάγῃς (ἵνα + subjunctive of ἐσθίειν) opposite Matthew and Luke’s aor. inf. φαγεῖν.

Jesus Sends Peter and John to Prepare the Lamb (L10-15)

L10-12 καὶ ἀπέστειλεν Πέτρον καὶ Ἰωάνην εἰπών (Luke 22:8). We should not ignore the very Hebraic καί + main verb (ἀπέστειλεν) + object (Πέτρον καὶ Ἰωάνην) + participle of λέγω (εἰπών) construction. Based on LXX equivalents, one would expect the present participle λέγων in this construction, and not the aorist participle εἰπών. In LXX εἰπών is rare, only appearing 5xx (2 Macc. 6:28; 14:34; 4 Macc. 6:30; 9:25; Prov. 24:24), and never as part of this construction. Still, εἰπών appears to represent the biblical לֵאמֹר (“saying”; rabbinic לוֹמַר).[46]

L11 δύο τῶν μαθητῶν αὐτοῦ vs. Πέτρον καὶ Ἰωάνην (Mark 14:13; Luke 22:8). In the Preparations for Eating the Passover Lamb story, Matthew does not mention the names or the number of disciples, apparently an intended omission on Matthew’s part.[47] Whether named (as in Luke 22:8) or unnamed (as in Mark 14:13), “two disciples” is culturally more appropriate than Matthew’s “disciples,” since Jewish sages typically sent out their disciples in pairs.[48] The Gospels (first-century documents) also confirm this cultural detail. John the Baptist sent two of his disciples to question Jesus (Luke 7:18; Matt. 11:2 [“his disciples”]). Jesus sent his disciples on missions in pairs: when preparing to enter Jerusalem, he sent two disciples to fetch a young donkey (Matt. 21:1; Mark 11:1; Luke 19:29); likewise, for their watershed healing and preaching mission, Jesus sent out his apostles two by two (Luke 10:1; Mark 6:7).[49]

Matthew’s silence regarding the number of disciples Jesus sent to prepare the Passover meal, therefore, appears to be a secondary development. But how do we chose between Luke’s version, which names the disciples Jesus sent, and Mark’s version, in which the disciples are anonymous? To Lowe and Buth, the naming of the two disciples appears to be a Lukan redaction, since these two disciples’ names are found together alone only in the writings of Luke (here, and in Acts 3:1, 3, 4, 11; 4:13, 19; 8:14). However, this statistic is somewhat misleading since the two are mentioned several other times, in Matthew and Mark as well as Luke,[50] as part of the threesome “Peter, John, and James,” Jesus’ inner circle and the first disciples chosen by him (see Luke 5:10-11).

In our reconstruction we have preferred Luke’s version with named disciples because it is likely that Jesus would have chosen two of his most trusted disciples for this important mission. Jesus was probably aware that there was a traitor among his disciples, but it is possible that he did not yet know who the traitor was, or whether there was more than one traitor. Therefore it was necessary for Jesus to chose disciples in whom he had absolute trust. By sending Peter and John to meet the water carrier, Jesus concealed the intended location of the Passover meal from the traitor, thereby protecting his disciples from harm.

אֶת פֶּטְרוֹס וְאֶת יוֹחָנָן (HR). We have reconstructed with אֶת…וְאֶת instead of with the possible, but very rare, BH אֶת…וְ (i.e., אֶת פֶּטְרוֹס וְיוֹחָנָן; cf. Exod. 12:28; Num. 26:4). On reconstructing the names Peter and John, see Choosing the Twelve, Comments to L19, L25.

L12 λέγων (GR). The aorist participle εἰπών (eipōn, “saying”) in Luke 22:8 is probably a redactional substitute for λέγων (legōn, “saying”) made by the First Reconstructor or the author of Luke. Whereas εἰπών is quite rare in the Synoptic Gospels,[51] λέγων is ubiquitous. Perhaps the First Reconstructor or the author of Luke replaced λέγων with εἰπών because he regarded it as a stylistic improvement, or simply for the sake of variety.

In the Synoptic Gospels the verb λέγειν (legein, “to say”) sometimes communicates one of the senses of its Hebrew equivalent, אָמַר (’āmar, “command, “instruct”).[52] Here, this sense of meaning could fit the context, that is, “and he sent Peter and John, commanding,” rather than “and he sent Peter and John, saying.” The same possibility of meaning exists for the forms of λέγειν in L21 (εἶπεν, Luke 22:10), L33 (ἐρεῖτε, Luke 22:11), L36 (λέγει, Matt. 26:18; Mark 14:14; Luke 22:11) and L56 (εἶπεν; εἰρήκει; Mark 14:16; Luke 22:13).

L13 ὑπάγετε εἰς τὴν πόλιν (Mark 14:13). The verb ὑπάγειν (hūpagein, “to go”) was probably introduced by Mark, and then copied from Mark by Matthew (Matt. 26:18), as happened in the story of the rich man (see Rich Man Declines the Kingdom of Heaven, Comment to L44-46; Matt. 19:21; Mark 10:21; Luke 18:22). Lindsey noted that this verb is one of Mark’s stereotypic words,[53] increasing the probability of its being a Greek editorial word and casting doubt on its here being closer to the wording of a pre-synoptic source than Luke’s πορευθέντες.

L13-14 πορευθέντες ἑτοιμάσατε ἡμῖν τὸ πάσχα (Luke 22:8). In LXX the participle of πορεύεσθαι (porevesthai, “to go”) is 7xx followed by an imperative, and this πορεύεσθαι construction is a normal way of translating a Hebrew double imperative.[54] In NT the participle of πορεύεσθαι is followed by the imperative 8xx (Matt. 2:8; 11:4 [= Luke 7:22]; 28:7; Luke 13:32; 14:10; 17:14; 22:8). These eight examples all appear to be derived from a Hebrew undertext.[55]

לְכוּ וְהָכִינוּ (HR). On reconstructing a participle + imperative (e.g., πορευθέντες ἑτοιμάσατε [porevthentes hetoimasate, “Going, prepare!”]) with two successive Hebrew imperatives (e.g., לְכוּ וְהָכִינוּ [lechū vehāchinū, “Go! And prepare!”]), see Call of Levi, Comment to L62.

With Delitzsch, we have reconstructed with a vav before the second of the two imperatives, and not לְכוּ הָכִינוּ. The structure without a vav before the second imperative is found in the Mishnah only once (m. Git. 6:3: צֵא הִתְקַבֵּל [“Go receive for me my writ of divorce”]), while the structure with the vav occurs 46xx.

BH has the double imperative structure over 200xx with vav,[56] but 262xx without the vav. If we were to reconstruct HR according to biblical style, we might omit the vav, thus: לְכוּ הָכִינוּ; however, since here Jesus’ words are in direct speech,[57] a MH style is more appropriate, and therefore our reconstruction has vav before the second imperative, thus: לְכוּ וְהָכִינוּ (L13-14).

In the Mishnah, 3 of the 46 occurrences of vav before the second of two imperatives are in the context of a Passover lamb: m. Pes. 7:2: מַעֲשֶׂה בְּרַבָּן גַּמְלִיאֵל שֶׁאָמַ′ לִטְבִי עַבְדּוֹ צֵא וּצְלֵה לָנוּ אֶת הַפֶּסַח עַל הָאַסְכָּלָה (“An anecdote about Rabban Gamliel [the Younger], who said to Tabi his slave: ‘Go and roast the Passover lamb for us on a grill’”); m. Pes. 8:2: הָאוֹמֶר לְעַבְדּוֹ צֵא וּשְׁחוֹט עָלַיִ אֶת הַפֶּסַח (“He who says to his slave: ‘Go and slaughter for me the Passover lamb…’”); m. Pes. 9:9: חֲבוֹרָה שֶׁאָבַד פִּסְחָהּ אָמְרוּ לְאֶחָד צֵא וּבַקִּשׁ וּשְׁחוֹט עָלֵינוּ (“A company[58] that lost its Passover lamb, they said [gave instructions] to someone, ‘Go out and find [look for] and slaughter [another one] for us [on our behalf]’”).

L14 הָכִינוּ (HR). In this context there are several Hebrew equivalents for the verb ἑτοιμάζειν (etoimazein, “to prepare”) that one is obliged to consider, including: עָשָׂה (‘āsāh, “do”) and הֵכִין (hēchin, “prepare”).[59] We have chosen to reconstruct with הֵכִין, the more literal translation of ἑτοιμάζειν.

The verb שָׁחַט (shāḥaṭ, “slaughter”) accompanied by פֶּסַח (pesaḥ, “Passover lamb sacrifice”) appears in HB 6xx (Exod. 12:21 [cf. Exod. 12:6; 34:25]; Ezra 6:20; 2 Chr. 30:15; 35:1, 6, 11), and שָׁחַט is found another 74xx together with humans, sacrificial animals such as an ox, cattle, calf, bull, ram, goat, kid, bird, or with synonyms for “a sacrifice.”

Whether one reconstructs ἑτοιμάσατε (L14) with the verb הֵכִין or with the verb שָׁחַט, it is clear that we are in the same physical world as the sage who said: “He who says to his slave, ‘Go and slaughter a Passover lamb on my behalf…’” (m. Pes. 8:2).[60]

הֵכִין, the hif‘il of the root כ-ו-ן, (“prepare,” “establish”), appears over 100xx in MT. The most significant of the occurrences of הֵכִין in the context of a Passover sacrifice is 2 Chr. 35:1-19, especially 2 Chr. 35:13-15; however, the exact expression פֶּסַח + הֵכִין does not appear. Likewise, Zeph. 1:7, which speaks of slaughtering and preparing an animal, where “slaughter” and “prepare” are two different actions, is significant. (So, also, in Gen. 43:16.) Job 38:41 uses the word הֵכִין when speaking of preparing or providing food.

One of the most illustrative examples of the meaning of הֵכִין in the context of slaughtering the Passover lamb is found in 2 Chr. 35:6, 13-15:

וְשַׁחֲטוּ הַפָּסַח…וְהָכִינוּ לַאֲחֵיכֶם…וַיְבַשְּׁלוּ הַפֶּסַח בָּאֵשׁ…וְאַחַר הֵכִינוּ לָהֶם וְלַכֹּהֲנִים…וְהַלְוִיִּם הֵכִינוּ לָהֶם וְלַכֹּהֲנִים…אֲחֵיהֶם הַלְוִיִּם הֵכִינוּ לָהֶם

…and slaughter the Passover lamb…and prepare it for your brothers…. They cooked the Passover sacrifice over the fire…and afterward they prepared for themselves and for the priests…and the Levites prepared for themselves and for the priests…their brothers the Levites prepared for them. (italics ours)

At each occurrence of a form of הֵכִין, LXX rendered with a form of ἑτοιμάζειν. Notice that in 2 Chr. 35:6 there occurs, just as in our pericope, the phrase, “Prepare the Passover lamb for someone” (with LXX using the same form of the imperative of ἑτοιμάζειν as in Luke 22:8 [L14]). We also observe that “prepare” is a separate act that follows the act of slaughtering. Peter and John’s question in response to Jesus’ command repeats the same verb “to prepare” that Jesus uses here. Had Jesus used the verb שָׁחַט, the disciples’ question would have been unnecessary, since it was obvious that the Passover lamb had to be slaughtered in the Temple. Reconstructing with הֵכִין, however, makes sense in this context: the disciples knew where the slaughtering was to take place, but they did not know where to roast and prepare the lamb.

ἡμῖν (Luke 22:8; L14). Should we use לָנוּ (cf. m. Pes. 7:2) or עָלֵינוּ (cf. m. Pes. 8:2; 9:9) to reconstruct ἡμῖν? We have preferred לָנוּ because it is not clear that the preposition עַל can follow the verb הֵכִין, and because -לְ is the more literal reconstruction of ἡμῖν.

In MH sources, when someone is sent to roast or slaughter the Passover lamb, there is regularly the mention of “for us” or “for me” (i.e., “on our/my behalf”), as in our passage. This lends extra authenticity to Luke’s text in both places (L14, L19). And in L19 we also have a Lukan-Matthean minor agreement on σοί (“for you”).

One might easily suppose that a Greek editor inserted ἡμῖν (“for us”) in Luke 22:8 (L14) and σοῖ (“for you”) in Luke 22:9 = Matt. 26:17 (L8, L19), since “for you/us” is an obvious inference from this “eat the Passover” context, yet the rabbinic parallels keep us from making that mistaken assumption. “For you” and “for us” are very probably authentic.

τὸ πάσχα (Luke 22:8; L14). The lamb, not the meal.[61] That τὸ πάσχα refers to a lamb is the most natural understanding in this context, since τὸ πάσχα has already been used in Luke 22:7 (cf. Mark 14:12) to refer to the paschal lamb. A general rule of interpretation is that the same word is expected to have the same meaning in the same context unless there is a clear reason to suppose otherwise. The Hellenized Semitic noun πάσχα,[62] is used as the equivalent of the Hebrew word פֶּסַח appears 43xx in LXX. Josephus also used πάσχα as the equivalent of פֶּסַח (e.g., J.W. 2:10; 6:423; Ant. 2:313).[63]

L15 ἵνα φάγωμεν (Luke 22:8). Lindsey (LHNS, to Luke 22:8) writes: “It is highly probable that Luke has added ἵνα φάγωμεν.” Perhaps φάγωμεν (“we may eat”) in L15 was added to the text due to the influence of φαγεῖν (fagein, “to eat”) in L19. All six occurrences of the expression ἵνα + subjunctive of φάγειν in the NT (here, in Mark 14:12 = Luke 22:8; and in Luke 7:36; 22:30; John 6:5; Rev. 19:18) appear to be the hand of a Greek editor. On the other hand, we note that the disciples’ question (L19) contains a form of the verb φάγειν, which may be a hint that Jesus used φάγειν in his command to them (L13-15; Luke 22:8). If so, perhaps Luke’s ἵνα φάγωμεν reflects an early reading.

Peter and John Ask Jesus Where to Prepare (L16-20)

L16-20 It is unlikely that Luke (or his source) moved this verse, the disciples’ question of clarification, from a place opposite its parallels, Matt. 26:17 and Mark 14:12 (L5-9), to this point in Luke’s narrative (L16-20), since the verse contains a Lukan-Matthean minor agreement, and Luke’s order allows the teacher, Jesus, rather than his disciples, to take the initiative in suggesting preparations for the Passover meal. In the Synoptic Gospels it is usually the author of Mark who changes the order of words, and sometimes, as probably here, even the order of sentences in a story.

L16 καὶ εἶπαν αὐτῷ (GR). Luke’s wording in L16, οἱ δὲ εἶπαν αὐτῷ (hoi de eipan avtō, lit., “the but they said to him”) looks like it is the product of stylistic polishing. We suspect Anth.’s wording was καὶ εἶπαν αὐτῷ (kai eipan avtō, “and they said to him”), which is more Hebraic.

Mark’s parallel, λέγουσιν αὐτῷ οἱ μαθηταὶ αὐτοῦ (“say to him the disciples of him”; L5, L16; Mark 14:12), with its “historical present,” is even less Hebraic than Luke’s phrasing, and furthermore, replacing past-tense verbs with present-tense verbs is a redactional trait of the author of Mark. In Matthew’s parallel, λέγοντες shows the influence of Mark’s λέγουσι.

L17-20 ποῦ θέλεις ἑτοιμάσωμεν σοι φαγεῖν τὸ πάσχα (Matt. 26:17; Luke 22:9; cf. Mark 14:12). Gill remarked:

And they said unto him, where wilt thou that we prepare? Meaning, not in what village, town, or city, for it was a fixed and determined thing, that the passover should be eaten at Jerusalem, and nowhere else…, but in what house in Jerusalem? (Gill, 7:704)

Gill’s comment is certainly correct. According to Shmuel Safrai,

…the Rabbis taught that the sanctity of the Temple applied to the entire city of Jerusalem, and that the “minor sacrifices” (i.e., those that could be eaten by the people) could be eaten throughout the city (m. Zebah. 5.7-8). Talmudic literature frequently attests that the Paschal sacrifice was in fact eaten in the houses of the city and on its roofs. So also, Philo indicates that on the Festival of Passover every “dwelling-house” (οἰκία; Spec. Laws 2.148) assumes the sanctity of the Temple…. The reality, then, in the last years of the Second Temple period was, that of those celebrating the Passover festival in Jerusalem, some undoubtedly consumed the Passover meal at locations throughout the city of Jerusalem. The narratives of the New Testament, especially Luke 22, further attest to the antiquity of the practice of pilgrims who offered the Paschal sacrifice in the Temple and then consumed it within houses throughout the city.[64]

L17 אֵיכָן (HR). We have a choice if reconstructing to BH between אֵיפֹה ,אַיֵּה and אָנָה.‎[65] In MH, אֵיכָן, and its less common variant הֵיכָן,[66] replaced the three BH choices (Bendavid, 336). Since we are in direct speech, our HR is אֵיכָן.

θέλεις ἑτοιμάσωμεν (L17, L19). To θέλεις ἑτοιμάσωμεν (Matt. 26:17; Mark 14:12; Luke 22:9) one should compare Luke 9:54, where the disciples James and John say, κύριε, θέλεις εἴπωμεν; (“Lord, do you want us to say [aor. subjv., as here]…?”).

L19 ἑτοιμάσωμέν (Luke 22:9; cf. Matt. 26:17; Mark 14:12 [L8]). In this context the verb ἑτοιμάζειν seems to be used of “preparing food” for someone. Repeatedly in this pericope we find forms of ἑτοιμάζειν (L8, L14, L19, L48, L57): ἑτοιμάσωμεν… ἑτοιμάσατε… ἑτοιμάσατε… ἡτοίμασαν (Matt. 26:17 = Mark 14:12 = Luke 22:9; Luke 22:8; Mark 14:15 = Luke 22:12; Matt. 26:19 = Mark 14:16 = Luke 22:13). The mention in this brief passage of ἑτοιμάζειν and τὸ πάσχα (5xx) likely indicates the Passover lamb.[67] Apparently, Jesus’ intention was that Peter and John would go, clean and prepare (make ready for grilling) the Passover lamb, which earlier had been slaughtered in the Temple.

σοι φαγεῖν (Matt. 26:17 = Luke 22:9; L19, L8). Matthew agrees with Luke against Mark to add the personal pron. σοί, and to use the infinitive φαγεῖν against Mark’s ἵνα φάγῃς.[68]

L20 τὸ πάσχα (Luke 22:9). See Comment to L15, Comment to L42-44 (τὸ πάσχα…φάγω) and Comment to L57. Since “prepare” rather than “slaughter” (the Passover lamb) is used throughout this pericope (except for the story setting, L1-3), it is an indication that the slaughtered and dressed lamb was in the possession of Jesus and his band of disciples, having already been brought from the Temple. Jesus was speaking of the preparations that had to be made before the lamb was roasted. If such is the case, the story takes place on the afternoon of Nisan 14 following the slaughtering of the lambs in the Temple beginning at noon.

Jesus’ Detailed Instructions to Peter and John (L21-48)

L21 καὶ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς (GR). The verb εἰπεῖν may represent the Hebrew אָמַר in the sense of “order” or “command.” See above, Comment to L12.

L22-33 Lindsey commented in the margins of his copy of Vincent Taylor, The Gospel According to St. Mark (2d ed.; London: Macmillan, 1966), 538: “He [i.e., Taylor—DNB] does not show the Semitic power of Luke 22:10: הנה ובאתם העירה ופגש בכם איש נושא כד מים. לכו אחריו אל הבית אשר יכנס בו. ואמרתם.”‎[69]

Plummer asked “whether this [the Water Jar Carrier incident] is a case of supernatural knowledge or of previous arrangement.” Scholars have not reached a consensus.[70] The Water Jar Carrier episode in Mark and Luke (Mark 14:13; Luke 22:10) could be an immediate-future prophecy similar to the prophecy in the Young Donkey story: “Go into the village opposite, where on entering you will find a colt tied, on which no one has ever yet sat” (Luke 19:30; RSV).[71] Although it is difficult to argue that Jesus’ foreknowledge of a tethered young donkey standing somewhere in a nearby village was not supernatural, there are valid reasons for supposing that the meeting of Jesus’ disciples with a water carrier was prearranged.

The NIV Study Bible (note to Luke 22:13; “as Jesus had told them”) states: “It may be that Jesus had made previous arrangements with the man in order to make sure that the Passover meal would not be interrupted. Since Jesus did not identify ahead of time just where he would observe Passover, Judas was unable to inform the enemy, who might have interrupted this important occasion.” According to this interpretation, Jesus did not reveal the location of the house or the name of its owner to his disciples in order to prevent Judas from passing on information about Jesus’ whereabouts to the chief priests.[72] One need not assume, according to this interpretation, that Jesus knew that it was Judas who had betrayed him, only that he already suspected that there was a traitor in their midst. This would explain why Jesus hid the location from all but two of his most trusted disciples (see above, Comment to L11). According to this line of reasoning, the house owner had some previous association with Jesus. The disciples did not know this Jerusalem acquaintance (or, did not know where his home was located); otherwise, Jesus could have said to the emissaries, “Go to the home of so-and-so” (as the author of Matthew tells us).

Jesus might have had a large number of acquaintances in Jerusalem, including this landlord.[73] From Luke 2:41 we learn that it was the custom of Jesus’ devout parents to make a pilgrimage to Jerusalem every year for the Festival of Passover, and Jesus may have continued this tradition.[74] Like other renowned first-century teachers from the Galilee such as Yochanan ben Zakkai who “used to sit in the shade of the Temple [בצילו של היכל] and teach the whole day” (b. Pes. 26a; y. Avod. Zar. 3:11 [43b; 24b]), Jesus would have visited Jerusalem to teach in the Temple’s courtyard and porticoes, especially on holidays when throngs of people from throughout the country and from abroad gathered there. If so, those occasions would have afforded Jesus plenty of opportunity to make acquaintances in Jerusalem. The owner of the house in this pericope could, conceivably, have been host to Jesus and his family many times before.

The message that Jesus instructs his disciples to deliver to the owner of the house also hints that Jesus was familiar with the house: “Where is the dining room where I may eat the Passover lamb with my disciples?” (L38-44). France argues that “it is not very likely, given the pressure on space in Jerusalem at Passover time, that a suitable room could have been made available without prior arrangement” (France, Mark, 564).

A further difficulty with the “supernatural foreknowledge” interpretation of the Water Jar Carrier episode is that if Jesus miraculously foresaw the meeting of the water carrier with his two disciples and did not know the location of the house, how would Jesus and the other ten disciples find their way to the house? Or did this require an additional miracle of foresight on Jesus part? The two disciples would have been busy at the landlord’s house until evening with Passover preparations, and therefore, presumably, would not have returned to Jesus and his band of disciples to lead them to the house.

As Plummer observed, “no miracle is wrought, where ordinary precautions suffice.”[75] Prearrangment is the most probable explanation of the Water Jar Carrier incident.

L22 ἰδοὺ εἰσελθόντων ὑμῶν (GR). Ἰδού (idou, “behold”) is a fairly reliable sign of the presence of a Hebrew undertext.[76] In contrast to ἰδού, Luke’s εἰσελθόντων ὑμῶν (“of entering of you,” i.e., “as you enter”), is a genitive absolute construction. Such constructions are often a sign of Greek redaction or Greek composition. In some cases, however, the genitive absolute probably reflects an underlying Hebrew construction, just as it occasionally does in LXX. Luke’s εἰσελθόντων ὑμῶν may be one such example.

הֲרֵי כְּשֶׁתִּכָּנְסוּ (HR). In LXX ἰδού (idou, “behold,” “look”) is nearly always the translation of הִנֵּה (hinēh, “behold,” “look”). In MH, however, הֲרֵי replaced הִנֵּה‎.[77] Since we prefer to reconstruct direct speech in a Mishnaic style of Hebrew, we have adopted הֲרֵי for HR.

On reconstructing εἰσέρχεσθαι with נִכְנַס, see Healing Shimon’s Mother-in-law, Comment to L5.

“As you enter the city” presupposes that Jesus and the disciples were outside the city at the time Jesus gave the instructions. This raises the question of setting and chronology. There appear to be three possibilities: 1) From somewhere outside the city walls Jesus sent the disciples with the lamb already slaughtered to make preparations inside the city; 2) From somewhere outside the city, perhaps from the Mount of Olives where they spent the night (Luke 21:37), Jesus sent the disciples to make preparations including slaughtering the lamb in the Temple; 3) From the Temple Mount where they had just slaughtered the lamb, Jesus sent the two disciples into the city to prepare the lamb ahead of the others.

Of the three, the first possibility seems the most unlikely. Why would Jesus bring the slaughtered lamb, a holy object, outside the city walls beyond the sphere of the Temple’s sanctity, only to bring it back into the city again? The second possibility is also problematic. If the disciples were to meet the water jar carrier at the city gate and he were to lead them to the house where the preparations were to be made, when would there be time for them to go to the Temple to slaughter the lamb? Or are we to suppose that the disciples were first led to the house, then they went to the Temple, and then returned to the house with the lamb? The third possibility is attractive: Jesus does not tell the two disciples to slaughter the lamb, but to prepare the lamb (see Comment to L14 and Comment to L17-20). This would make sense if Jesus sent the disciples from the Temple Mount with the slaughtered lamb in their keeping. However it is unclear whether the Temple Mount was considered to be separate from the city in such a way that exiting the Temple Mount could be described as entering the city.

L23 εἰς τὴν πόλιν (Luke 23:10; cf. L13; Mark 14:13; Matt. 26:18). I.e., to Jerusalem. “The Passover meal had to be eaten within the city’s walls (cf. Deut 16:2; m. Pesaḥ. 7:9…)” (Evans, 371). See Sifre Num. 69, on 9:10 (ed. Horovitz, 64): איזהו מקום אכילתו מפתח ירושלים ולפנים (“What is the place in which it [the Passover lamb] is to be eaten? Within the gates [walls] of Jerusalem”). See also t. Pes. 8:2; t. Sanh. 3:3.[78] For the purpose of eating the Passover lamb, all of the walled area of the city was considered part of the Temple (see above, Comment to L17-20). Jesus taught daily in the Temple (Luke 19:47; 20:1; 21:37-38), but spent the nights outside the city on the Mount of Olives (Luke 21:37).

L24 ἀπαντήσει; συναντήσει (Mark 14:13; Luke 22:10). The verb συναντᾶν (synantan, “meet”) appears 57xx in LXX, where it usually translates the roots פ-ג-ש ,פ-ג-ע and ק-ר-א. The verb συναντᾶν is found 6xx in NT—Luke 22:10; 9:37 (a Lukan “frame” sentence, with no parallel in Matthew or Mark); Acts 10:25 (Cornelius’ meeting of Peter); 20:22; Heb. 7:1, 10 (both of which refer to Melchizedek’s meeting of Abraham [Gen. 14:18], but συναντᾶν does not appear in the Gen. 14 story). Therefore, συναντᾶν could be called a “Lukan word.” The verb ἀπαντᾶν (apantan, “meet”) appears 45xx in LXX, where it usually translates (16xx) the root פ-ג-ע, but 3xx the root פ-ג-ש, and 2xx the root ק-ר-א. The verb ἀπαντᾶν is found only twice in NT—here, in Mark 14:13, and in Luke 17:12 in the Healing Ten Men with Scale Disease pericope, a story that only appears in Luke.[79] Ἀπαντᾶν is rare in NT, but in LXX almost as common as συναντᾶν. Both συναντᾶν and ἀπαντᾶν are so infrequent in the Synoptic Gospels and NT that it is difficult to decide which of the words to use in GR; however, given Mark’s habit of replacing words in his text (see “Results of This Research” below), we have little choice but to prefer Luke’s συναντᾶν.

How should we reconstruct ἰδοὺ εἰσελθόντων ὑμῶν εἰς τὴν πόλιν συναντήσει ὑμῖν ἄνθρωπος βαστάζων κεράμιον ὕδατος (L22-27) to Hebrew? A very interesting parallel is found in 1 Sam. 10:5: וִיהִי כְבֹאֲךָ שָׁם הָעִיר וּפָגַעְתָּ חֶבֶל נְבִיאִים יֹרְדִים מֵהַבָּמָה (“There, as you enter the town, you will encounter a band of prophets coming down from the shrine”; JPS). LXX translates with ἀπαντᾶν: καὶ ἔσται ὡς ἂν εἰσέλθητε ἐκεῖ εἰς τὴν πόλιν καὶ ἀπαντήσεις χορῷ προφητῶν καταβαινόντων ἐκ τῆς Βαμα. Here we find Luke’s εἰσελθεῖν εἰς τὴν πόλιν + participle (Luke: βαστάζων; LXX: καταβαινόντων).

What is the MH equivalent of συναντᾶν? The verb פָּגַש never appears in the Mishnah. The verb פָּגַע appears once in the Mishnah (m. Sanh. 9:6) in the sense “beat up, injure”; however, in printed editions of the Mishnah we find in m. Avot 6:9 (chpt. 6 is a later addition to Tractate Avot, as evidenced by its absence in Kaufmann): פַעַם אַחַת הָיִיתִי מְהַלֵּךְ בַּדֶּרֶךְ וּפָּגַע בִּי אָדָם אֶחָד, וְנָתַן לִי שָׁלוֹם, וְהֶחֱזַרְתִּי לוֹ שָׁלוֹם (“Once I was going down the road and a man met me. He greeted me, and I returned his greeting”). This is the same syntax we find here in Luke and Mark (L24-25): 3rd per. sing. of verb for “meet” + indirect object in 2nd per. + subject. Apparently, in MH it is idiomatic to say “A man met me,” instead of (as in English) “I met a man.”[80]

L25, L27 ἄνθρωπος κεράμιον ὕδατος βαστάζων (Mark 14:13; Luke 22:10). According to many scholars,[81] a man carrying a jar of water would have been regarded as unusual in the time of Jesus.[82] Some scholars have even supposed that water-carrying by men was so rare in first-century Jewish society that they have cited it in support of the theory that Jesus and his disciples celebrated the Passover on a different date than the rest of the Jewish people.[83] As Notley noted, “It is routinely presented as proof for Jesus’ coincidental celebration with the Essene Passover that he instructed his disciples to follow ‘a man carrying water’ (Mark 14:13; Luke 22:10). Underlying this conjecture is the assumption that Jewish men in antiquity did not carry water. The line of reasoning continues that the man must have belonged to an all-male community (i.e., Essenes) in which there were no women to perform these menial tasks…. According to S. Safrai, ‘there is no indication that the act of a man carrying water was either forbidden or socially unacceptable…..”[84]

Notley also cites the injunction in Jubilees 50:8 that forbids men from drawing water on the Sabbath. “That prohibition,” Notley observes, “…assumes that it was permitted, even expected, for a man to draw water on the other six days of the week. Otherwise there would be no need for the Sabbath prohibition.”[85] Thus the theory that Jesus celebrated an Essene Passover, which on other grounds is highly problematic (see Comment to L3), finds no support in the story of the Water Carrier.

Why was the man carrying water to the house of his master on the eve of Passover? Furstenberg suggests that a good deal of water was needed for washing and for thinning the quantities of wine drunk during the meal. Gill suggested that water was needed for baking the unleavened bread the following day, “for on that day it was not lawful to carry any: hence they were obliged to fetch it on the preceding evening.”[86] Plummer suggested that the water was required for ceremonial handwashing before the evening meal. In fact, water was necessary for a variety of purposes and there is no reason why they should be considered mutually exclusive.[87]

L25 ἄνθρωπος (Mark 14:13; Luke 22:10). The man carrying the jar of water was not the בַּעַל הַבַּיִת, the owner of the house, but someone else. Perhaps, since he was doing a menial task, the “man” was a servant of the owner of the house; however, this man is never referred to as a servant or slave. Alternatively, he could have been a family member of the owner. LXX renders אִישׁ with ἀνήρ 789xx and with ἄνθρωπος 424xx. Hebrew fragments of Ben Sira have אָדָם opposite ἀνήρ 27xx and opposite ἄνθρωπος 474xx. In other words, both אִישׁ and אָדָם are frequently rendered ἄνθρωπος by Greek translators. In MH אָדָם became more common and אִישׁ less used (Bendavid, 337). We have reconstructed here with אָדָם.

L26 πρὸς τὸν δεῖνα (Matt. 26:18). The word δεῖνα, meaning “so and so,” “such and such,” “this or that mortal,” is found only this once in NT and never in LXX, Josephus, Apostolic Fathers or Apocryphal Gospels.[88] Probability requires the assumption that δεῖνα was introduced by the author of Matthew. The words τὸν δεῖνα imply that Jesus gave the disciples the name of the man, having made a previous arrangement with him, and that there was no miraculous foresight.[89]

L31 ὅπου (Mark 14:14). Mark may have inserted ὅπου here under the influence of a more authentic ὅπου in L39 (Luke 22:11; Mark 14:14). Lindsey argues that ὅπου is a “Greek word” and states that “it is highly probable that Luke has added it” (LHNS, to Luke 22:11). Mark’s ὅπου ἂν εἰσέλθῃ is clumsy and unclear in both Greek and literal Hebrew retroversion. However, Luke’s εἰς ἣν εἰσπορεύεται makes sense and can be reconstructed in Hebrew with relative ease.

L32-33 καὶ ἐρεῖτε (Luke 22:11). At Luke 19:31 ἐρεῖτε is a Lukan-Matthean minor agreement against Mark’s εἴπατε; therefore, here, too, ἐρεῖτε probably represents the pre-synoptic text (see below, “Redaction Analysis: Mark’s Version”). Since the words καὶ ἐρεῖτε appear in dialogue, we have reconstructed them using the MH וְתֹאמְרוּ (“and you [plur.] will say”), rather than the BH וַאֲמַרְתֶּם (with Delitzsch). The reading καί ἐρεῖτε retroverts nicely to Hebrew, whether MH (וְתֹאמְרוּ) or biblical (וַאֲמַרְתֶּם). If וַאֲמַרְתֶּם were behind καὶ ἐρεῖτε, this would be a significant case of BH style within dialogue.

The words ἀκολουθήσατε αὐτῷ…καὶ ἐρεῖτε apparently represent the Hebrew undertext because of the לְכוּ אַחֲרָיו… וַאֲמַרְתֶּם structure. Since here we have direct speech, our hypothesis predicts that Jesus would have said וְתֹאמְרוּ; however, it is possible that when his words were put into writing, the author used the higher, more biblical style (וַאֲמַרְתֶּם), which did not match the spoken Hebrew. It is not uncommon for native speakers of a language to move to a more elevated style when writing their language. When the biography of Jesus, probably preserved orally by Jesus’ disciples, was first put down in Hebrew, it is likely that there were occasionally such occurrences.

L34 τῷ οἰκοδεσπότῃ τῆς οἰκίας (Luke 22:11). Mark’s parallel (Mark 14:14) is τῷ οἰκοδεσπότῃ, and Matthew’s (Matt. 26:18) is αὐτῷ. Luke’s expression, τῷ οἰκοδεσπότῃ τῆς οἰκίας (“the owner of the house of the house”), is awkward because the noun οἰκοδεσπότης means “owner of the house,” which makes τῆς οἰκίας (“of the house”) superfluous. Luke’s awkward phrase may reflect a Hebrew undertext, בַּעַל הַבַּיִת, which we would expect to be translated as τῷ κυρίῳ τῆς οἰκίας (“the owner of the house”). Luke, or more likely his source (FR), may have replaced τῷ κυρίῳ with τῷ οἰκοδεσπότῃ (the normal way of expressing “owner of the house” in Greek). However, it is more likely that ὁ οἰκοδεσπότης τῆς οἰκίας, although superfluous and unidiomatic, was the original Greek translation of the Hebrew vorlage.

Lowe, however, does not believe that τῷ οἰκοδεσπότῃ τῆς οἰκίας is a Semitism. According to Lowe, Luke’s phrase τῷ οἰκοδεσπότῃ τῆς οἰκίας could simply be making reference to the words εἰς τὴν οἰκίαν in the previous verse. Notice that Mark lacks οἰκία in both verses.

We find בַּעַל הַבַּיִת in Exod. 22:7 and Judg. 19:22, 23, where, in each case, LXX translates with ὁ κύριος τῆς οἰκίας. The expression בַּעַל הַבַּיִת occurs frequently in rabbinic sources.

Furstenberg notes: “According to halachah, the host (בעל הבית) must join the company (חבורה), who are guests in his home, in eating the lamb.”

L35 ὅτι (Mark 14:14). A Lukan-Matthean minor agreement of omission. Both Matthew and Luke reject the Markan addition of ὅτι.

L36 λέγει σοι ὁ διδάσκαλος (Luke 22:11). Many scholars assume that Matthew and Mark preserve the correct word order of the phrase “the teacher says”; however, Luke’s λέγει σοι ὁ διδάσκαλος has a more Hebraic word order.[90]

ὁ διδάσκαλος (Matt. 26:18; Mark 14:14; Luke 22:11).[91] Jesus’ unspecified reference to himself as “the teacher,” without mentioning his name is further evidence that Jesus had made prior arrangements with the landlord to use his dining room.[92]

רַבֵּנוּ (HR). The Hebrew language prefers to attach pronominal suffixes (such as “my” and “your”) to nouns. Greek authors, by contrast, tend to avoid such constructions, allowing the reader to understand a personal possessive pronoun from the context.[93] Take, for example, the story of the slaying of Abel, where the Hebrew text reads וַיָּקָם קַיִן אֶל הֶבֶל אָחִיו וַיַּהַרְגֵהוּ (“And Cain rose against Abel his brother and slew him”; Gen. 4:8). In the translation Greek of LXX we find this sentence rendered quite literally as ἀνέστη Καιν ἐπὶ Αβελ τὸν ἀδελφὸν αὐτοῦ καὶ ἀπέκτεινεν αὐτόν (“Cain rose against Abel his brother and slew him”); however, when Josephus retold the biblical story in literary Greek, he wrote ὁ Κάις…κτείνει τὸν ἀδελφόν (“Cain…slew the brother”; Ant. 1:55), omitting the possessive pronoun. Sometimes, even LXX drops the possessive pronouns present in the Hebrew text. For instance, LXX translates אֱלֹהֵינוּ (“our God”) 6xx simply as θέος or ὁ θέος, with no possessive pronoun.[94] In consideration of this dynamic between the Hebrew and Greek languages, we have reconstructed ὁ διδάσκαλος with רַבֵּנוּ instead of הָרַב. Interestingly, “Many Latin MSS read magister noster, ‘our teacher’” (Evans, 369).[95]

One might ask why we do not reconstruct διδάσκαλος with מוֹרֶה (mōreh, “teacher”), which is known in BH (e.g., Prov. 5:13; Isa. 30:20). Our answer is that the New Testament makes it clear that, in the late Second Temple period, διδάσκαλος was the Greek equivalent of רַבִּי (cf. Matt. 23:8; John 1:38).

λέγει (Matt. 26:18; Mark 14:14; Luke 22:11). Could λέγει here have the Hebraic sense of “command,” that is, “the Teacher commands you,” rather than “the Teacher says to you” or “the Teacher asks you”? (See above, Comment to L12.) A striking rabbinic parallel to Jesus’ words (L33-34, L36) is found in b. Pes. 86b: כל מה שיאמר לך בעל הבית עשה (“Whatever the owner of the house will command [lit., will tell] you to do, do it”). In this rabbinic saying we find the verb אָמַר (in the sense of “tell,” “command”), and the expression בעל הבית (“the owner of the house”). A second rabbinic passage in which אָמַר carries the sense “command” is found in m. Yom. 1:5: שֶׁלֹּא תְשַׁנֶּה דָבָר מִכָּל מָה שֶׁאָמַרְנוּ לָך (“that you will not change a thing of anything we have commanded [lit., we told] you”).

L37-L43 ὁ καιρός μου ἐγγύς ἐστιν, πρὸς σὲ ποιῶ τὸ πάσχα μετὰ τῶν μαθητῶν μου (Matt. 26:18). According to Davies and Allison (3:458), “Matthew has inserted the reference to the time being near, turned a question into a sovereign command—Jesus does [not] ask to be invited but rather dictates to his host—and once more abbreviated.” Although it is perfectly good Hebrew,[96] the phrase “My time is near” probably was added by the author of Matthew, or by a redactor of Matthew. The phrase is too similar to Jesus’ words recorded in Mark 1:15 (“The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent, and believe in the gospel”) and John 7:6 (“My time has not yet come…”) to be historical.[97] These phrases seem to be a Greek-speaking disciple’s post-resurrection reflection on the death of Jesus. The phrase ὁ γὰρ καιρὸς ἐγγύς appears in Rev. 1:3 and 22:10.[98]

L38 κατάλυμα (Mark 14:14; Luke 22:11). France (Mark, 565) thinks it remarkable that the landlord did not take offense when Jesus referred to the dining room as κατάλυμά μου (katalūma mou, “my dining room”). However, it is probable that the pronoun μοῦ is Mark’s theological addition that hints at Jesus’ lordship. Luke’s text flows better: “Where is the room where” rather than “Where is my room where.” If Luke preserved the better text, then there is no need to raise the possibility of offense on the owner’s part.

κατάλυμα appears 3xx in NT, here in the Preparations for Eating the Passover Lamb (Luke 22:11; Mark 14:14) and in Luke’s account of Jesus’ nativity: διότι οὐκ ἦν αὐτοῖς τόπος ἐν τῷ καταλύματι (“because there was no place for them in the katalyma”; Luke 2:7).[99] Martin notes that “The word kataluma is a late Greek word used in the papyri for lodgings or quarters for troops. It has a wide range of meanings in the Septuagint including temportary lodgings for visitors to the temple (1 Chron. 28:12) or God’s presence in the temple (2 Kings 7:6); a temporary resting place on a journey (Jer. 14:8); a den of a lion [Jer. 32(25):38], etc.”[100]

BDAG (521) suggests that κατάλυμα can be understood as “guest-room, as in [Luke] 22:11; Mark 14:14, where the contexts also permit the sense dining-room.” Moulton-Milligan (329) states that κατάλυμα is “the Hellenistic equivalent of καταγωγεῖον.” Καταγωγεῖον (see entry “καταγωγεύς” in LSJ, 888) is the equivalent of κατάγαιον or κατάγειον, all three the opposites of ἀνάγαιον (L46). Edwards (421) remarks: “The hall [the κατάλυμα mentioned in this pericope]…resembles the meeting place of the early church described in Acts 1:13 and 12:12.”

אֵיכָן הַחֶדֶר (HR). For our decision to reconstruct ποῦ with אֵיכָן (’ēchān, “where?”), see above, Comment to L17. More difficult to decide is how one should reconstruct κατάλυμα.[101] One option is עֲלִיָּה (aliyāh), but since in L46 (Mark 14:15; Luke 22:12) we find ἀνάγαιον (anagainon), which probably represents עֲלִיָּה,‎[102] we suspect that a different Hebrew word stands behind κατάλυμα. Another option for reconstructing κατάλυμα is טְרִיקְלִין (ṭriklin, “banquet hall””), a loanword in Hebrew from the Greek τρικλίνιον (triklinion, “dining room” “triclinium”).[103] However, if טְרִיקְלִין was present in the Hebrew Ur-text, why was it not translated by τρικλίνιον? Reconstructing with חֶדֶר (ḥeder, “room,” “inner room,” as opposed to “upper room”), therefore, appears to be the best alternative even though ταμιεῖον is the usual LXX equivalent of חֶדֶר,‎[104] and not κατάλυμα.[105]

L40-42 πρὸς σὲ ποιῶ τὸ πάσχα (Matt. 26:18). Lindsey (LHNS, to Matt. 26:18) writes: “What is πρὸς σέ? Surely not Hebrew?” Matthew preserves the pres. tense of the verb ποιεῖν, but Hebrew would prefer the future tense at this point.

L42-44 τὸ πάσχα…φάγω (Mark 14:14; Luke 22:11). Can φαγεῖν τὸ πάσχα ever mean “eat the Passover meal”? Apparently not. The expression seems always to indicate the eating of the sacrificial lamb (see Comment to L57). Lowe points out that the position of the verb (φάγειν) at the end of the clause, as here, is a Greek (rather than a Hebrew) construction.

According to Boring, “He [i.e., Jesus—DNB] will celebrate the Passover ‘with his disciples,’ not with his family. So, too, his disciples are not with their families. The group about the table represents the new family to which they belong….”[106] However, Boring’s assumption that the disciples’ wives and children were not present at the Last Supper is unfounded. According to Safrai (Safrai-Stern, 809), in the time of Jesus the Passover meal was a family celebration.

L43 τῶν μαθητῶν (Matt. 26:18; Mark 14:14; Luke 22:11). Jesus mentions διδάσκαλος (רַב; L36), and in the same breath mentions its opposite, μαθητής (תַּלְמִיד). We have this same contrast in HB’s only occurrence of תַּלְמִיד:

וַיַּפִּילוּ גּוֹרָלוֹת מִשְׁמֶרֶת לְעֻמַּת כַּקָּטֹן כַּגָּדוֹל מֵבִין עִם־תַּלְמִיד׃

They cast lots for shifts on the principle of “small and great alike, like master like apprentice.” (1 Chr. 25:8; JPS)

The noun תַּלְמִיד appears in the Mishnah,[107] while the word רַב (often in the sense of “master of a slave”) is found in the Mishnah at least 10xx in the sense of “master of a disciple” (e.g., m. Ter. 8:1; m. Bab. Metz. 2:11; m. Mak. 2:2; m. Edu. 1:3; 8:7; m. Avot 1:6, 16 [3xx]; m. Ker. 6:9 [2xx]). רַב also appears in MT, but in the sense of “great,” “greater.” Notice in this pericope the contrast between רַב and תַּלְמִיד. This same contrast occurs in Jesus’ saying, “A disciple is not above his teacher, and a slave is not above his master” (Matt. 10:24; Luke 6:40).[108]

L45 καὶ αὐτὸς δείξει ὑμῖν (GR). The words καὶ αὐτός constitute a Hebraism: וְהוּא (“and he”; e.g., in Luke 7:12; 8:22; 9:51).[109] On the other hand, κἀκεῖνος is a Grecism and a possible sign of a Greek editor’s hand.[110] However, why would Luke, who has καὶ αὐτός frequently in his account, replace καὶ αὐτός with κἀκεῖνος if he saw καὶ αὐτός in his source? We therefore conclude that Luke saw κἀκεῖνος in the source he was copying, which at this point was FR and not Anth., and that this Grecism is from the First Reconstructor’s hand, and not from the hand the author of Luke or from the Anthologizer.

L46 ἀνάγαιον μέγα ἐστρωμένον (Mark 14:15; Luke 22:12). Here we have Hebraic word order. Unlike English, in Hebrew the adjective follows its noun, e.g., “upper-room big” rather than “big upper-room.” In Luke the noun ἀνάγαιον is followed by two adjectives, in Mark by three. We suspect that Mark added the third adjective, ἕτοιμον (L47; Mark 14:15), for his Greek readers as an explanation of ἐστρωμένον (estrōmenon, “furnished”).

ἀνάγαιον. The noun ἀνάγαιον (anagainon)[111] is derived from “(ἄνω; γαῖα [γῆ] ‘someth. raised fr. the ground’) a room upstairs” (BDAG, 59). Ἀνάγαιον is an extremely rare word in Koine Greek,[112] although we find ἀνάγαιον in papyri from the end of the sixth cent. C.E. (Moulton-Milligan, 30; LSJ, 100). Its opposite, κατάγαιον or κατάγειον (katagaion, katageion, “ground-floor room,” “cellar”), is attested from the second cent. C.E. (Μoulton-Μilligan, 30; cf. entry “κατάγειος” in LSJ, 886). Ἀνάγαιον appears in NT only in this story (Mark 14:15; Luke 22:12), but never in LXX, Philo, Pseudepigrapha, Josephus, Plutarch, Apostolic Fathers or Apocryphal Gospels. Ἀνάγαιον and κατάλυμα have much the same sense: “room,” “hall.”

ἐστρωμένον (Mark 14:15; Luke 22:12).[113] The verb στρωννύειν (strōnnūein, “spread,” “furnish”) appears 8xx in LXX. Its equivalents are: י-צ-ע (Esth. 4:3; Isa. 14:11), ר-פ-ד (Job 17:13) and כ-ב-ד (Ezek. 23:41: καὶ ἐκάθου ἐπὶ κλίνης ἐστρωμένης καὶ τράπεζα κεκοσμημένη, וְיָשַׁבְתְּ עַל־מִטָּה כְבוּדָּה וְשֻׁלְחָן עָרוּךְ לְפָנֶיהָ).

עֲלִיָּה גְּדוֹלָה מוּצַעַת (HR). It is possible that κατάλυμα and ἀνάγαιον represent the same Hebrew word. It is also possible that a Greek editor replaced the second instance of κατάλυμα with ἀνάγαιον for the sake of variety. Nevertheless, we believe it is more likely that use of two different words in Greek is the result of translating two separate Hebrew terms. What is more, supposing that two different words stand behind κατάλυμα and ἀνάγαιον gives better sentence progression: “Where is the [dining] room…and he will show you an upstairs room” (and not, “Where is the upstairs room…and he will show you an upstairs room”).[114]

L48 ἡμῖν (Mark 14:15). Swete (330-331) points out that “the Lord does not often use the pl. in this inclusive [1st-person] way, but cf. ix. 39 [sic 40].” Swete’s observation is correct, but he also should have observed that Luke’s parallel (L48; Luke 22:12) does not have ἡμῖν. The pronoun ἡμῖν, therefore, is likely a Markan addition.[115]

The Disciples Carry Out Jesus’ Command (L49-57)

The landlord had readied a furnished room, but it was necessary for Jesus’ disciples to make further preparations. Jesus commanded (lit., “told”) them to do so (Mark 14:15; Luke 22:12). And they did as their master commanded (Matt. 26:19; Mark 14:16; Luke 22:13).

L49 ἀπελθόντες δὲ (GR). Opposite Luke’s ἀπελθόντες δέ (apelthontes de, “but departing”) Mark has καί ἐξῆλθον (kai exēlthon, “and they went out”). Although Mark’s καί + aorist in L49, L52 and L55 could be reconstructed as a series of vav-consecutives, Luke’s participle + δέ + aorist (L49, L55) could also reflect a series of vav-consecutives.[116] In favor of Luke’s reading we note that there is one Lukan-Matthean minor agreement in the use of ἀπέρχεσθαι (aperchesthai “to depart”) against Mark (Matt. 9:7; Luke 5:25; Mark 2:12), who used ἐξέρχεσθαι (exerchesthai, “to go out), as here in Mark 14:16. In addition, Luke and Matthew twice agreed to use ἀπέρχεσθαι (Matt. 8:19; Luke 9:57; Matt. 8:21; Luke 9:59) where there are no Markan parallels. Moreover, Luke and Matthew agreed 4xx against Mark’s use of ἐξέρχεσθαι, indicating that in at least these four instances ἐξέρχεσθαι in Mark is redactional. Given Mark’s modus operandi,[117] we have adopted Luke’s reading for GR.

וַיֵּלְכוּ (HR). On reconstructing ἀπέρχεσθαι (aperchesthai, “to go away”) with הָלַךְ (hālach, “walk”), see Not Everyone Can Be Yeshua’s Disciple, Comment to L7.

L52 καὶ ἦλθον εἰς τὴν πόλιν (Mark 14:16). A Lukan-Matthean minor agreement of omission. Both Matthew and Luke reject the Markan addition of καὶ ἦλθον εἰς τὴν πόλιν.

L53 συνέταξεν (Matt. 26:19). It is unlikely that Matthew’s συνέταξεν reflects the Hebrew undertext. The verb συντάσσειν (sūntassein, “order,” “command”) is usually (124xx) the translation of צִוָּה (tzivāh, “command”) in LXX. It appears in NT only in Matthew (here; Matt. 21:6; 27:10). Therefore, συνέταξεν appears to be indicative of Matthean redaction. The verb appears in the last verse of Matt. 27:3-10 in the phrase καθὰ συνέταξέν μοι κύριος. Matt. 27:3-10 is a unique Matthean pericope and contains τότε and other elements of Matthean redaction. The instance of συντάσσειν in Matt. 21:6 has the same συνέταξεν αὐτοῖς ὁ Ἰησοῦς as here. The phrase συνέταξεν αὐτοῖς ὁ Ἰησοῦς is strong evidence of Matthean redaction and cautions us against preferring Matthew’s version of this story.[118]

L55-56 εὗρον καθὼς εἶπεν αὐτοῖς (Luke 22:13). Luke’s wording in L55-56, with its concern to show that Jesus’ prediction was correct, and its of the pluperfect form εἰρήκει (eirēkei, “he had said”), looks like the product of redaction either by the First Reconstructor or the author of Luke. We have therefore omitted these lines from GR and HR.

L57 καὶ ἡτοίμασαν τὸ πάσχα (“and they prepared the Passover [lamb]”; Matt. 26:19; Mark 14:16; Luke 22:13). If this meal[119] was not a sectarian meal, but the usual observance in Jerusalem, as we suppose, these preparations included those necessary for grilling the Passover lamb in the homeowner’s courtyard.[120]

Redaction Analysis

Which Synoptic Gospel(s) has (have) best preserved the Preparations for Eating the Passover Lamb story? Which synoptic account, or accounts, should we prefer?

Mark’s Version

Contrary to the opinion of most scholars, our analysis shows evidence that Mark’s version of this pericope is a rewritten account of a more original version, such as we find in Luke’s Gospel. Taylor (536) pointed out a number of identically-worded phrases in Mark’s versions of the Young Donkey story (Mark 11:1-6) and the Water Jar Carrier incident (Mark 14:13-16).[121] These parallels include:

  1. ἀποστέλλει δύο τῶν μαθητῶν αὐτοῦ (Mark 11:1; 14:13)
  2. καὶ λέγει αὐτοῖς (Mark 11:2; 14:13)
  3. ὑπάγετε εἰς τὴν κώμην / πόλιν (Mark 11:2; 14:13)
  4. εἴπατε (Mark 11:3; 14:14)
  5. ὁ κύριος / διδάσκαλος (Mark 11:3; 14:14)
  6. καὶ ἀπῆλθον καὶ εὗρον / ἐξῆλθον…καὶ εὗρον (Mark 11:4; 14:16)
  7. καθὼς εἶπεν ὁ Ἰησοῦς / καθὼς εἶπεν αὐτοῖς (Mark 11:6; 14:16)

Influenced by the similar Young Donkey story, which appears earlier in his Gospel, Mark repeated some of the words and phrases from that earlier story in the Water Jar Carrier incident. At these points Mark’s version appears less authentic than the more Hebraic and often more coherent wording exhibited by Luke’s text. It appears that Mark intentionally echoed the wording of the Young Donkey story in Mark 11:1-6 in order to highlight their similarity. In a majority of Mark’s identically-worded phrases, in both accounts, the wording of Luke’s account is to be preferred as more accurately representing the pre-synoptic text.

Instead of ἀποστέλλει δύο τῶν μαθητῶν αὐτοῦ (Mark 11:1; 14:13), Luke has ἀπέστειλεν δύο τῶν μαθητῶν (Luke 19:29) and καὶ ἀπέστειλεν Πέτρον καὶ Ἰωάνην (Luke 22:8). Luke’s καί + aorist tense is more Hebraic than Mark’s historical present verb (a frequent Markan substitution).[122] In Preparations for Eating the Passover Lamb alone, which is just five verses in length, Mark replaces three aorist-tense verbs in Luke with historical present-tense verbs.

Opposite Mark’s καὶ λέγει αὐτοῖς (Mark 11:2; 14:13), Luke has λέγων (Luke 19:30), a Lukan-Matthean minor agreement, and εἰπών (Luke 22:8), the equivalent of לֵאמֹר. In both parallels Mark has his typical historical pressent.

Instead of Mark’s εἴπατε (Mark 11:3; 14:14), Luke has ἐρεῖτε (Luke 19:31; 22:11), a Lukan-Matthean minor agreement in Luke 19:31. The minor agreement at Luke 19:31 is evidence that ἐρεῖτε was probably also the pre-synoptic reading in the Preparations for Eating the Passover Lamb story. Furthermore, at Luke 22:11 (L32-33), the reading καί ἐρεῖτε retroverts nicely to Hebrew, whether mishnaic (וְתֹאמְרוּ) or biblical (וַאֲמַרְתֶּם).

Opposite Mark’s καὶ ἀπῆλθον / ἐξῆλθον…καὶ εὗρον (Mark 11:4; 14:16), Luke has ἀπελθόντες δὲ…εὗρον in both Luke 19:32 and Luke 22:13. In LXX the verb ἀπέρχεσθαι is usually the translation of הָלַךְ.‎[123] In both contexts (Young Donkey and Water Carrier), the pre-synoptic Greek text probably had a form of the verb ἀπέρχεσθαι. In L49 (Mark 14:16; Luke 22:13), ἀπέρχεσθαι (as Luke) rather than a form of the verb ἐξέρχεσθαι (as Mark) is to be preferred: וַיֵּלְכוּ fits this context better than וַיֵּצְאוּ.

Instead of καθὼς εἶπεν ὁ Ἰησοῦς (Mark 11:6), the text of Luke reads καθὼς εἶπεν αὐτοῖς (Luke 19:32), which is the reading of Mark 14:16, where Luke reads καθὼς εἰρήκει αὐτοῖς (Luke 22:13). Εἰρήκει is probably the improvement of a Greek editor (see Comment to L55-56).

Aside from these places where Mark appears to have rewritten the Preparations for Eating the Passover Lamb pericope on the basis of the Young Donkey story, Mark probably introduced the following changes into his version of the Preparations for Eating the Passover Lamb:

  1. L1. Replaced δέ, a Lukan-Matthean minor agreement, with καί.
  2. L5-9. Moved Luke 22:9 to a spot earlier in his account.
  3. L5 (and L16). Replaced ὁ δὲ εἶπαν (aor.) with λέγουσιν (hist. pres.).
  4. L7 (and L18). Added ἀπελθόντες, a Lukan-Matthean minor agreement in omission.
  5. L8 (and L19). Replaced σοι φαγεῖν, a Lukan-Matthean minor agreement, with ἵνα φάγῃς.
  6. L10. Replaced ἀπέστειλεν (aor.) with ἀποστέλλει (hist. pres.).
  7. L11. Substituted δύο τῶν μαθητῶν αὐτοῦ for Πέτρον καὶ Ἰωάνην.
  8. L12 (and L21). Replaced ὁ δὲ εἶπεν (aor.), a Lukan-Matthean minor agreement, with καὶ λέγει (hist. pres.).
  9. L13. Substituted ὑπάγετε for πορευθέντες.
  10. L13. Added εἰς τὴν πόλιν, which he saw in Luke 22:10.
  11. L24. Substituted ἀπαντήσει for συναντήσει.
  12. L30. Added καί.
  13. L31. Replaced εἰς ἣν εἰσπορεύεται with ὅπου ἂν εἰσέλθῃ.
  14. L32-33. Replaced καὶ ἐρεῖτε with εἴπατε.
  15. L35. Added ὅτι, a Lukan-Matthean minor agreement in omission.[124]
  16. L36. Substituted ὁ διδάσκαλος λέγει for λέγει σοι ὁ διδάσκαλος.
  17. L38. Added μοῦ.
  18. L45. Substituted καὶ αὐτός for κἀκεῖνος.
  19. L47. Added ἕτοιμον.
  20. L48. Added καί.
  21. L48. Added ἡμῖν, perhaps reflecting the ἡμῖν with ἑτοιμάσατε in L14.
  22. L49. Substituted καὶ ἐξῆλθον for ἀπελθόντες δέ.
  23. L51. Added οἱ μαθηταί.
  24. L52. Added καὶ ἦλθον εἰς τὴν πόλιν, a Lukan-Matthean minor agreement in omission.
  25. L55. Added καί.

This pericope provides a good example of the way in which the author of Mark edited his sources. In this pericope we have 25 (or perhaps more) changes in just 5 verses of Mark, of which 11 (nos. 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 13, 14, 15, 16 and 24) are relatively sure to be Mark’s changes. The other 14 possible Markan changes are supported by circumstantial evidence, that is, they become more probable because of Mark’s method of continually introducing changes to the text. The author of Mark, not the author of Luke, is responsible for these changes.[125]

Matthew’s Version

Lowe argues that Matthew presents the more Hebraic version of Preparations for Eating the Passover Lamb, and also is the closest of the three synoptic accounts to the Hebrew vorlage:

Three of the central phrases in Luke’s story of the pitcher-man are definitely un-Hebraic: ἑτοιμάσατε ἡμῖν τὸ πάσχα ἵνα φάγωμεν (v. 8; not paralleled in either Matt. or Mark); κεράμιον ὕδατος βαστάζων (v. 10; Mark identical); and ὅπου τὸ πάσχα μετὰ τῶν μαθητῶν μου φάγω (v. 11; Mark identical). Less striking, but nevertheless the wrong word order, are: κἀκεῖνος ὑμῖν δείξει (v. 12; likewise Mark καὶ αὐτὸς ὑμῖν δείξει). And lacking a conj. between two finite verbs: ποῦ θέλεις ἑτοιμάσωμεν (v. 9; not paralleled in either Matt. or Mark).[126] Of those 5 phrases: a) parallel to the one in v. 11 (ὅπου τὸ πάσχα μετὰ τῶν μαθητῶν μου φάγω), Matt. has the correct word order for a Hebraic origin; b) the other 4 have no parallel in Matt. at all; c) two of them (vv. 8 [ἑτοιμάσατε ἡμῖν τὸ πάσχα ἵνα φάγωμεν] and 9 [ποῦ θέλεις ἑτοιμάσωμεν]) do not even have a parallel in Mark. So even Mark is less un-Hebraic than Luke in this part of the pericope. The three phrases shared by Luke and Mark are identical (except καὶ αὐτὸς vs. κἀκεῖνος), so all relationship hypotheses are equally conceivable in respect of them: Mark borrowing from Luke or vice versa or both using a shared Gk. source. But the absence of the other two phrases in Mark actually favors him over Luke. There may be the appearance of one or two Hebraisms in Luke’s elaboration. Our criterion, however, should not be occasional Hebraisms (which could be biblical flourishes or even accidental) but a continuous Hebraic text. This Luke definitely does not have in vv. 8-12: all 5 verses are un-Hebraic in a greater or lesser degree, whereas the non-miraculous version of Matt. does correspond to a continuous Heb. text. My conclusion is that a) the whole story of the pitcher-man is an anecdotal addition at the Gk. stage; b) the version of Matt. is Hebraic almost from beginning to end; c) Lk’s version is superior, at most, in the opening words of the 1st v.; d) this pericope provides no substantial support for any version of Luke priority; e) on the contrary, were we to judge from this pericope alone, and did not know about the excellent versions of Luke in other places and about (the Gk.) Matt.’s evident borrowing from Mark elsewhere, we would have to conclude that the order of development is Matt.-Mark-Luke.

Other authorities disagree. Especially significant is the opinion of Davies-Allison (3:456):

[In Matt. 26:17-19] Matthew has made several interesting changes to Mark. Most of them shift the emphasis away from Jesus’ foreknowledge to ‘his obedient seizure of his καιρός’ (G. Barth, in TIM, p. 144, n. 1) and the disciples’ obedience to him. He has (i) greatly abbreviated; (ii) referred to ‘the disciples’ in general rather than two in particular (…v. 18); (iii) omitted both the man with a water jar and mention of an upper room and in general made the scene less picturesque; (iv) inserted ‘my time is at hand’ (v. 18 diff. Mark 14.14); (v) turned a question of Jesus into a statement (v. 18 diff. Mark 14.14); and (vi) added an apparent allusion to Exodus [Ex 12.28] (…v. 19) and so underlined the new exodus theme.[127]

Matthew’s version looks contrived because of its structure: “Note that our verse [Matt. 26:19] repeats the vocabulary of v. 17 and so makes an inclusio: V. 17: οἱ μαθηταί—τῷ Ἰησοῦ—ἑτοιμάσωμεν—τὸ πάσχα; V. 19: οἱ μαθηταί—ὁ Ἰησοῦς—ἡτοίμασαν—τὸ πάσχα” (Davies-Allison, 3:458). Davies and Allison (3:458) further point out that “Ex 12.28 directly follows Moses’ instructions for Passover.” The reading of LXX is: καὶ ἀπελθόντες ἐποίησαν οἱ υἱοὶ Ισραηλ καθὰ ἐνετείλατο κύριος τῷ Μωυσῇ καὶ Ααρων οὕτως ἐποίησαν, surprisingly similar to Matt. 26:19: καὶ ἐποίησαν οἱ μαθηταὶ ὡς συνέταξεν αὐτοῖς ὁ Ἰησοῦς καὶ ἡτοίμασαν τὸ πάσχα.

The appearance of ὁ Ἰησοῦς in Matthew’s account (Matt. 26:17, 19; L5, L54) also stands in the way of accepting Matthew’s version of the story. Twice in Matthew’s shorter version of the story, in contrast to Mark and Luke’s versions, Jesus’ name appears. In first-century Jewish culture, addressing a sage by name was a social taboo. The Synoptic Gospels reflect this cultural aversion: only demons (Luke 4:34; 8:28), lepers (Luke 17:13) and a beggar (Luke 18:38) impolitely address Jesus by name. Apparently, disciples were reluctant even to refer to a sage by name in writing. Therefore, it is probable that the addition of Ἰησοῦς in the Preparations for Eating the Passover Lamb story was a Matthean innovation.

Luke’s Version

It appears that Luke’s version of Preparations for Eating the Passover Lamb, although it has undergone some redaction, is the closest of the Synoptic Gospels to the pre-canonical Greek text. Apparently, at this point in his Gospel, Luke copied from FR (Luke’s Source 2) rather than from Anth. (Luke’s more Hebraic Source 1).[128] As usual when Luke depended on FR, we find fewer minor agreements and Hebraisms.

However, although Luke’s version of Preparations for Eating the Passover Lamb is considerably redacted, remarkably, it still preserves the story more faithfully than Mark or Matthew. It is much easier to reconstruct the pre-synoptic Greek sources of DT texts such as, e.g., Luke 7:8; Matt. 8:9 and Matt. 13:16-17; Luke 10:23-24 than TT texts like those found in this pericope. Nevertheless, even when Luke and Matthew’s texts have undergone redaction, as in this pericope (in Matthew’s case, serious redaction), it is still possible to reconstruct their literary ancestors with considerable success.[129]

Results of This Research

We return now to the questions raised at the outset of this inquiry:

  1. Is the Water Jar Carrier story a foreign element, a later addition to the pericope? As we have seen, Matthew’s version of the Preparations for Eating the Passover Lamb is seriously redacted, including significant abbreviation. The absence of the Water Jar Carrier in Matthew, therefore, is not a strong argument against its authenticity. Mark reworked the Water Jar Carrier incident to draw out similarities to the Young Donkey story, but the Lukan version is Hebraic, historically credible, and therefore likely to have derived from a Hebrew Ur-text. The two minor agreements (ὁ δὲ εἶπεν and the omission of ὅτι) within the segment also argue in favor of its authenticity. If this portion of the pericope is legendary, then it was already legendary in the Synoptic Gospels’ Heb. ancestor, something that is difficult to believe.
  2. Had Jesus, unbeknown to his disciples, previously made arrangements with a Jerusalem landlord to use one of his rooms, or did Jesus prophesy the meeting with the homeowner’s slave with divine foresight? The interpretation that Jesus depended on divine foreknowledge is possible, but unnecessary in the Preparations for Eating the Passover Lamb story. It is entirely likely that Jesus had friends and acquaintances in Jerusalem since pilgrimage to Jerusalem was an annual tradition in Jesus’ family and Jesus may have maintained this tradition in his adulthood. Even under normal circumstances prearrangements to reserve a space would probably have been necessary because of the large number of pilgrims coming to Jerusalem for the feast. But Jesus was probably also aware that there was a traitor among his band of disciples. In order to conceal the location from the traitor, Jesus privately arranged with a Jerusalem landlord to reserve a place for Jesus and his disciples to eat the Passover lamb so that the celebration would not be disturbed. Jesus sent two of his most trusted disciples to make preparations, and only when the meal was ready did Jesus lead the rest of his disciples to the house, by which time it was too late for the traitor to reveal the location to Jesus’ enemies.
  3. Where was Jesus when he sent his disciples to make preparations? Were they sent after the lamb had already been slaughtered, or was slaughtering the lamb in the Temple part of the preparation they were intended to carry out? Three scenarios seem possible: 1) Jesus and the disciples slaughtered the lamb and took it outside the walls of Jerusalem. From there Jesus sent Peter and John to make preparations; 2) From somewhere outside the walls of Jerusalem Jesus sent Peter and John to enter the city, slaughter the lamb and make preparations; 3) After slaughtering the lamb, Jesus sent Peter and John from the Temple Mount into the city to prepare the lamb for the Passover meal. We have ruled out the first scenario since it seems highly improbable that Jesus would take the slaughtered lamb beyond the limits of Jerusalem’s sanctity. The second scenario is possible, but it does not match Jesus’ instructions to enter the city, follow the water jar carrier and make preparations in the house where he leads them. (At what point are the disciples to slaughter the lamb in the Temple?) The third scenario is attractive, but it remains to be seen whether it was possible to describe leaving the Temple Mount as entering the city. It is also possible that Luke or FR added the words “as you enter the city” to the Preparations for Eating the Passover Lamb story.


Reconstructing Triple Tradition pericopae is always a challenging task. Whenever Luke depended on FR the challenge is increased since FR edited the Anthology’s material, often improving the Greek style and deleting or obscuring Hebraisms. Nevertheless, careful analysis shows that a Hebraic source ultimately stands behind the Synoptic Gospels and that this source is best preserved in Luke. Luke’s version of the Preparations for Eating the Passover Lamb preserves details—such as Jesus taking the initiative to send the two disciples (see the discussion to L4-5), commanding the disciples to prepare the lamb (cf. m. Pes. 7:2), and using Hebraic idiom (cf. L24-25)—that fit the cultural context of first-century Judaism.

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  • [1] For abbreviations and bibliographical references, see “Introduction to ‘The Life of Yeshua: A Suggested Reconstruction.’
  • [2] Revised with the assistance of Joshua N. Tilton and Lauren S. Asperschlager.
  • [3] 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.
  • [4] The impetus for this commentary and reconstruction was the Jerusalem School of Synoptic Research’s monthly seminar that took place on July 7, 2008 (Attending: Gary Alley; Sharon Alley; Leehee Aynav; Guido Baltes; David Bivin; Randall Buth; Akiva Cohen; Yair Furstenberg; Malcolm Lowe; Halvor Ronning), and the subsequent written discussion that Bivin had with Baltes, Buth, Cohen and Lowe who responded to his written summary of the seminar discussions.
  • [5] “The Passover meal was traditionally held at night (Exod. 12:8; cf. m. Pesaḥ 10:1), not in the early evening” (France, Matt., 983).
  • [6] We might have used the noun סֵדֶר (sēder, “order”) in speaking about the paschal meal and liturgy for which Jesus and his disciples were preparing; however, סֵדֶר first appears in Jewish literature only in the Middle Ages (Even-Shoshan, Millon, 901). We do not find the word “meal” in this passage about preparations for a meal. The Hebrew word for “meal” is סְעוּדָה, which appears 27xx in the Mishnah, but never with פֶּסַח, as in the expression סְעוּדַת פֶּסַח. The expression סְעוּדַת פֶּסַח is sometimes heard in modern Hebrew, but is absent from ancient Hebrew sources, including rabbinic literature. Another Hebrew word for “meal,” אֲרֻחָה, found once in MT (Prov. 15:17), is not used of the Passover meal.
  • [7] See Comment to L57.
  • [8] Collins (646) states: “…one can say that this story is a legend or that it has legendary features. It is similar in form to the account of the finding of a young donkey in [Mark] 11:1-7…. This passage was probably not in Mark’s passion source.”
  • [9] Lowe argues that Matthew’s version of this pericope is the more Hebraic text (see “Redaction Analysis: Matthew’s Account” below), which, along with the absence of the Water Jar Carrier section (Luke 22:10; Mark 14:13), indicates that Matthew preserves the better text. In contrast, H. B. Green (210) stated: “Mk’s version of this episode has a very close formal correspondence to that of the fetching of the colt in Mark 11:1-6 (= Matt. 21:1-7). Mt’s drastic reduction (similar to his re-handling of the miracle stories) has destroyed this parallelism. The prophetic sign disappears….”
  • [10] Cf., e.g., 1 Sam. 2:31; 26:10; 2 Kgs. 20:17; Isa. 7:17; 39:6; Jer. 9:24; 16:14; 19:6; 23:5, 7; 30:3; 31:27, 31, [38]; 33:14; 48:12; 49:2; 50:27; 51:47, 52; Ezek. 7:10; 21:30, 34; Hos. 9:7; Amos 4:2; 8:11; 9:13; Zech. 14:1; Mal. 3:19; Ps. 37:13; Eccl. 2:16; 12:1.
  • [11] We often find יוֹם + בָּא translated in LXX as ἥκω + ἡμέρα (cf. Ps. 36:13; Hos. 9:7; Isa. 7:17; Ezek. 21:30, 34).
  • [12] There are five instances of ἡ ἡμέρα [in sing.] + ἔρχεσθαι in LXX: ἡ ἡμέρα αὐτοῦ ἔλθῃ (1 Kgdms. 26:10); ἰδοὺ ἡμέρα κυρίου ἔρχεται…ἡ ἡμέρα ἡ ἐρχομένη (Mal. 3:19); ἰδοὺ γὰρ ἡμέρα κυρίου ἀνίατος ἔρχεται (Isa. 13:9); and ἡμέρα ἀπωλείας ἦλθεν (Jer. 26:21). The plural ἡμέραι ἔρχονται appears in: 1 Kgdms. 2:31; 4 Kgdms. 20:17; Amos 4:2; 8:11; 9:13; Zech. 14:1; Isa. 39:6; Jer. 9:24; 16:14; 19:6; 23:5, 7; 28:52; 30:18; 31:12; 37:3; 38:27, 31, 38.
  • [13] The combination ἡμέρα + πρώτη occurs in: Exod. 12:15 [2xx], 16; Lev. 23:7, 35, 39, 40; Num. 7:12; 28:18; 29:13; Deut. 16:4; Judg. 20:22; 2 Kgdms. 16:23; 2 Chr. 29:17; 2 Esd. 18:18; 1 Macc. 3:29; Dan. 10:12. Of these 17 occurrences, 10 are translations of בַּיוֹם הָרִאשׁוֹן (Exod. 12:15, 16; Lev. 23:7, 35, 39, 40; Num. 7:12; 28:18; Deut. 16:4; Judg. 20:22); 2 are translations of מִן הַיֹּום הָרִאשֹׁון (Dan. 10:12; 2 Esdr. 18:18); one is a translation of מִיוֹם הָרִאשׁוֹן (Exod. 12:15); one is a translation of בַּיָּמִים הָהֵם (2 Kgdms. 16:23); and one is a translation of [לַחֹדֶשׁ] בְּאֶחָד (2 Chr. 29:17).
  • [14] Exod. 23:15; 34:18; Lev. 23:6; Deut. 16:16; 2 Chr. 8:13; 30:13, 21, 22; 35:17; 1 Esd. 1:17; 7:14; 2 Esd. 6:22; cf. Luke 22:1: Ἤγγιζεν δὲ ἡ ἑορτὴ τῶν ἀζύμων ἡ λεγομένη πάσχα (“Drew near the Feast of Unleavened Bread, which is called Passover”) and cf. Luke 2:42: τῇ ἑορτῇ τοῦ πάσχα (“for the Feast of Passover”).
  • [15] In the works of Josephus the Feast of Unleavened Bread is usually referred to as ἡ τῶν ἀζύμων ἑορτή or ἡ ἑορτή τῶν ἀζύμων (as in LXX). The places in the works of Josephus in which he mentions both ἑορτή and τὰ ἄζυμα are: Ant. 2:317; 3:321, 248-250; 9:263, 264, 271; 10:70; 11:109; 14:21; 17:213-214; 18:29; 20:106; J.W. 2:10, 224, 244, 280; 4:402; 5:99; 6:290, 421-427 (cf. Philo, Spec. 1:181). The places in which he mentions both τὸ πάσχα and τὰ ἄζυμα are: Ant. 3:249; 10:70; 14:21; 18:29; 20:106; J.W. 2:10.
  • [16] Lindsey observed that the transitions between pericopae were especially susceptible to Greek redaction. 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.”
  • [17] There are no examples of יוֹם הַמַּצוֹת in MT, DSS or rabbinic sources.
  • [18] See Mechilta de-Rabbi Ishmael, Pisha chpt. 8, on Exod. 12:15 (ed. Horovitz-Rabin, 26 [l. 18], 28 [l. 6]).
  • [19] Thackeray (note to Ant. 2:317; Loeb) comments on Josephus’ use of the number “eight”: “Originally seven days, Nisan 15-21 (Lev. xxiii. 6, cf. Ex. xii. 18 f., and so Josephus himself A. iii. 249), ‘but from time immemorial the Jews outside of Palestine have added a day to their principal festivals’ (Oesterley-Box, Religion and Worship of Synagogue, ed. 2, 385).” However, it is more likely that Josephus speaks of eight days not because of Jewish Diaspora practice, nor because he was writing for the non-Jewish world, but because Jewish homes in the land of Israel were leaven-free for part of Nisan 14.
  • [20] Lindsey made this suggestion in the margins of his copy of Vincent Taylor, The Gospel According to St. Mark (2d ed.; London: Macmillan, 1966), 536.
  • [21] By and large Matthew accepted Mark’s opening, although he omitted the explanation in L3.
  • [22] Cf. Exod. 12:15, 16; Lev. 23:7, 35, 39, 40; Num. 7:12; 28:18; Deut. 16:4; Judg. 20:22; 4Q216 V, 4, 11; 4Q365 23 I, 10; 11Q XL, 9; m. Suk. 5:6; m. Taan. 4:3; m. Tam. 7:4; m. Kel. 17:14; m. Nid. 10:3. Compare the rabbinic phrase בְּיוֹם טוֹב הָרִאשׁוֹן in: m. Eruv. 3:8; m. Suk. 3:13, 14; m. Meg. 3:5.
  • [23] Exod. 12:16; Lev. 23:7, 35; Num. 28:18.
  • [24] Lev. 23:39, 40; Num. 7:12; Deut. 16:4.
  • [25] Exod. 12:15.
  • [26] Judg. 20:22.
  • [27] For L1-2 Lindsey suggested the reconstruction בְּאֶחָד לְחַג הַמַּצּוֹת . This suggestion is found in the margins of his copy of Vincent Taylor, The Gospel According to St. Mark (2d ed.; London: Macmillan, 1966), 536. In MH we find the structure בְּ + בְּאֶחָד + month (“on the first [day] of [the month of]…”). This structure appears 19xx in the Mishnah (m. Shek. 1:1 [בְּאֶחָד בַּאֲדָר]; 3:1 [בְּאֶחָד בְּנִיסָן (2xx), בְּאֶחָד בְּסִיוָן, בְּאֶחָד בְּתִשְׁרִי (2xx)]; m. Rosh Hash. 1:1 [בְּאֶחָד בְּנִיסָן, בְּאֶחָד בֶּאֱלוּל, בְּאֶחָד בְּתִשְׁרִי (2xx), בְּאֶחָד בִּשְׁבַט]; m. Taan. 4:5) [בְּאֶחָד בְּטֵבֵת, בְּאֶחָד בְּטֵבֵת (2xx)]; m. Bech. 9:5 [בְּאֶחָד בְּסִיוָן (2xx), בְּאֶחָד בְּנִיסָן, בְּאֶחָד בְּתִשְׁרִי, בְּאֶחָד בֶּאֱלוּל]). Likewise, this MH expression appears in DSS, e.g., 4Q252 I, 11; 4Q252 I, 22; 4Q321 II, 1 (2xx); 4Q321a V, 4. Notice, e.g., באחד בראשון (“on the first [day] of the first [month]”) in DSS (4Q321 III, 7; 4Q321a I, 2). However, in Hebrew the way of citing a date on a calendar is not the same as referring to a day in a succession of days. See Segal, 196-197.
  • [28] See Halvor Ronning, “Who Made the ‘Omission,’ Luke or Mark?” under the subheading “Historical, Cultural, Literary and Linguistic Evidence.”
  • [29] According to the Mishnah, “An Israelite [i.e., a Jew who was not a priest] slaughtered, and the priest accepted it” (m. Pes. 5:6; cf. t. Pes. 3:11). This custom is also attested by Philo, who writes:

    In this festival many myriads of victims from noon till eventide are offered by the whole people, old and young alike, raised for that particular day to the dignity of the priesthood. (Spec. 2:145; Loeb)

    See Safrai-Safrai, 10.

  • [30] Cf. m. Zev. 5:8. This practice, however, was opposed by the author of Jubilees (49:16-20) and the author of the Temple Scroll (11Q19 [11QTa] XVII, 8-9) who held to a more ancient halachic tradition attested in 2 Chr. 35:13 and Ezek. 46:20-24, according to which the Passover sacrifices had to be eaten in the courtyard of the Temple (see Safrai-Safrai, 10-11). The fact that Jesus ate the Passover lamb with his disciples in a Jerusalem home rather than in the Temple courtyard indicates that Jesus did not follow the Essene halachah.
  • [31] See the references to “companies” in Jos., J.W. 6:423 (“a company [φατρία] of not less than 10”); m. Pes. 7:13 (“two companies [חֲבוּרוֹת] that were eating [two separate Passover offerings] in one house”); and m. Pes. 9:9 (“a company [חֲבוּרָה] whose Passover offering was lost”). Cf. Safrai-Safrai, 14. According to Robinson, “Jesus and his disciples constituted one company; and he, as the Master, directed some of them (Peter and John) to attend to the purchase and slaughtering of the lamb, and other necessary preparations.” Thomas Robinson, The Evangelists and the Mishna: Illustrations of the Four Gospels Drawn From Jewish Traditions (London: James Nisbet, 1859), 144.
  • [32] The Pentateuch appears to call the 14th of Nisan “Passover”: “On the fourteenth day of the first month the LORD’s Passover is to be held. On the fifteenth day of the month there is to be a festival” (Num. 28:16-17 [cf. Lev. 23:5-6]; NIV). However, the JPS version renders: “In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month, there shall be a passover sacrifice to the LORD, and on the fifteenth day of that month a festival.” The NIV misunderstood פֶּסַח as referring to the festival rather than to the lamb, as evidenced by the words of its translation: “Passover is to be held.”
  • [33] It is difficult to believe that Luke created the phrase ᾗ ἔδει θύεσθαι τὸ πάσχα (L3), since usually Luke transmitted his two sources, Anth. and FR, faithfully. Therefore, the phrase probably originated with FR, which Luke copied throughout this pericope.
  • [34] According to Gundry (Matt., 523), “[Matt.] 26:17 (Mark 14:12; Luke 22:7) Matthew leaves Mark’s ‘day’ to be understood and omits ‘when they were sacrificing the Passover.’ The latter omission probably stems from awareness that his Jewish reading audience did not need the explanation.” See below, Comment to L3 (ὅτε τὸ πάσχα ἔθυον [Mark 14:12]).
  • [35] צָרִיךְ is not found in HB, but the noun צֹרֶךְ appears once in HB (2 Chr. 2:15; rendered in LXX by χρεία), signaling the greater use of the root צ-ר-ך in MH, where צֹרֶךְ is found, e.g., 81xx in the Mishnah. In the Hebrew fragments of Ben Sira צֹרֶךְ appears 29xx and צָרִיךְ‎ 6xx. In DSS, צֹרֶךְ is found once (11Q19 [11QTa] XLVII, 9), and although DSS attempted to follow the style of HB, צָרִיךְ appears twice (4Q197 [4QTobb ar] 3 I, 1; 4Q372 1 I, 17). The word צָרִיךְ (in masc. and fem. sing. and plur.) appears more than 6,000xx in rabbinic literature. It is found over 200xx in the Mishnah, including הָיָה צָרִיךְ‎ 5xx (m. Yom. 4:1; m. Taan. 2:3; m. Bab. Metz. 7:1; m. Bab. Bat. 9:6; m. Neg. 14:8; all 5 = לֹא הָיָה צָרִיךְ), and הָיוּ צְרִיכִים‎ 2xx (m. Par. 3:4; m. Sot. 9:6); approximately 300xx in Tosefta, including הָיָה צָרִיךְ‎ 8xx, of which seven are לֹא הָיָה צָרִיךְ.
  • [36] Δεῖ appears only 45xx in LXX, yet over 300xx in Josephus and over 100xx in NT. In the Synoptic Gospels δεῖ is found 32xx (Matt.: 8xx; Mark: 6xx; Luke: 18xx). It also appears 22xx in Acts (13xx in 2 Acts), so δεῖ could certainly be Luke’s redaction at times in Luke-Acts.
  • [37] J. Green (755) views Luke’s use of δεῖ here as a theological motif (citing Luke 9:22; 13:33; 22:22, 37; 24:7, 26, 44; Acts 1:16; 17:2-3), indicating “divine necessity”: “…Luke’s attribution of the timing of sacrifice to divine necessity—a necessity rooted in Scripture (cf. Exod 12:6, 21; Deut 16:1-7), but portrayed by Luke in such a way that one may be reminded of the progression of events related to Jesus’ death according to divine necessity.” Green’s conclusion is doubtful.
  • [38] The verb שָׁחַט is a better candidate for reconstruction than זָבַח. Although, as Bendavid (16) points out, שְׁחִיטָה and זְבִיחָה have the same sense in MH, שָׁחַט is always the verb that is used when speaking of sacrificing the Passover lamb (e.g., m. Pes. 3:7; 5:1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6; 6:5, 6; 8:1, 2, 3, 5, 7; 9:9; not one instance of זָבַח in the Mishnah’s tractate Pesahim!). Even when the accompanying noun is זֶבַח, the verb remains שָׁחַט (cf. m. Men. 2:4, הַשּׁוֹחֵט אֶת הַזֶּבַח).
  • [39] See “LOY Excursus: Mark’s Editorial Style.”
  • [40] “They sacrifice” is a translation of θύουσιν (“they are sacrificing”), the same verb (θῦσαι) used by Mark and Luke in L3, and the same continuative form of the verb, ἔθυον (impf.), used by Mark (and hinted at by Luke’s impf. ἔδει). θύουσιν is also used to refer to the Passover sacrifice in Jos., Ant. 17:213. The continuative form of θῦσαι is again used in referring to the Passover sacrifice in Ant. 2:313 (θύομεν, “we are sacrificing”), but the aor. θύσαντες is used in Ant. 9:271.
  • [41] “Initiative on the part of the disciples is rare and mostly plays a negative role” (Nolland, Matt., 1,062). On the relationship between a sage and his disciple, see Safrai, “With All Due Respect…
  • [42] For תַּלְמִיד (talmid, “disciple”) as a synonym for, or parallel to, עֶבֶד (‘eved, “servant,” “slave”), see Matt. 10:24-25. Cf. the famous saying of Antigonus of Socho (early second cent. B.C.E.): “Don’t be like slaves [עֲבָדִים] who serve their master [lit., “the master”; hārāv הָרָב] in order to receive a reward…” (m. Avot 1:3).
  • [43] The verb προσέρχεσθαι is found often in the Apocrypha (including 8xx in Ben Sira where, in its Hebrew fragments, we find equivalents twice [Sir. 6:19, קרב; and 9:13, קרבת]).
  • [44] “Mark 14.12 has needless ἀπελθόντες” (Davies-Allison, 3:457). Hagner (2:763) calls ἀπελθόντες a “redundant participle.”
  • [45] See Comment to L15.
  • [46] Elsewhere in NT we find the καί / δέ + main verb + object + εἰπών construction 5xx (Luke 9:21-22; John 18:22; Acts 7:26, 27; 19:21). We find additional καί + main verb in the past tense syntax in Matt. 26:19 (καὶ ἐποίησαν οἱ μαθηταὶ…καὶ ἡτοίμασαν…) and Mark 14:16 (καὶ ἐξῆλθον οἱ μαθηταὶ καὶ ἦλθον…καὶ εὗρον…καὶ ἡτοίμασαν).
  • [47] “Compare the omission of ‘send them out two by two’ in [Matt.] 10.1 diff. Mark 6.7. (But in [Matt.] 21.1; Mark 11.1 Matthew retains ‘two disciples’.)” (Davies-Allison, 3:457 n. 14).
  • [48] For example, Rabban Gamaliel (first cent. C.E., the grandson of Gamaliel, the teacher of Paul) sent two disciples to Rabbi Hanina ben Dosa (first cent. C.E.) to ask him to pray for his sick son (y. Ber. V, 9d; b. Ber. 34b). For the Hebrew text and English translation of this story, see Healing Shimon’s Mother-in-law, Comment to L16. The justification for traveling in pairs was apparently Eccl. 4:9-10: “Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow; but woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up” (RSV). Additional examples include: m. Sot. 1:3; m. Mak. 2:5; t. Sanh. 10:5[11]; t. Ohol. 17:6. The Talmud also speaks of disciples studying in pairs: b. Shab. 63a; b. Taan. 7a. Often the rationale for sending two disciples seems to be so that there will be two witnesses.
  • [49] See Sending the Twelve: Commissioning, Comment to L30.
  • [50] Peter, James, and John appear together in Matt. 17:1; Mark 9:2; Luke 9:28; Mark 5:37 = Luke 8:51; Mark 13:3; 14:33 [cf. Matt. 26:37]; Acts 1:13. On the order Peter, James and John versus Peter, John and James, see Choosing the Twelve, Comment to L19-25.
  • [51] The participle εἰπών occurs in Matt. 26:44; Mark 14:39; Luke 9:22; 19:28; 22:8; 23:46; 24:40. Since εἰπών also occurs 9xx in Acts (Acts 1:9; 4:25; 7:26, 27, 60; 18:21; 19:21, 40; 20:36) it may be that εἰπών should be attributed to the author of Luke rather than to the First Reconstructor.
  • [52] Examples of this sense of אָמַר in HB are: 1 Sam. 16:16; 1 Chr. 21:17; 2 Chr. 24:8; Neh. 13:9, 19, 22; Esth. 1:17; 9:14; Ps. 105:31, 34; 107:25; Dan. 1:3. See HALOT, I אמר, sense 6.
  • [53] See Robert L. Lindsey, A Hebrew Translation of the Gospel of Mark (2d ed.; Jerusalem: Dugith, 1973), 81.
  • [54] Gen. 27:13: πορευθεὶς ἔνεγκε = לֵךְ קַח; Gen. 37:14: πορευθεὶς ἰδέ = לֶךְ נָא רְאֵה; Gen. 43:2: πάλιν πορευθέντες [free translation (cf. Gen. 44:25), lit., “again going,” in place of the usual ἀποστράφητε, ἐπιστράφητε, ἀναστράφητε, or ὑποστράφητε] πρίασθε = שֻׁבוּ שִׁבְרוּ; Exod. 5:11: πορευόμενοι συλλέγετε = לְכוּ קְחוּ; Exod. 5:18: πορευθέντες ἐργάζεσθε = לְכוּ עִבְדוּ;‎ 2 Kgs. 5:10 (LXX: 4 Kgdms. 5:10): πορευθεὶς λοῦσαι = הָלוֹךְ וְרָחַצְתָּ [inf. abs., “going”]; 1 Macc. 7:7: πορευθεὶς ἰδέτω (like the conjectured Hebrew undertext of the Life of Yeshua, the Hebrew text of 1 Macc. was lost in antiquity).
  • [55] E.g., Matt. 11:4 and Luke 7:22 (no parallel in Mark) have almost identical wording for eleven words and are likely authentically reflecting a Hebrew undertext: καὶ ἀποκριθεὶς ὁ Ἰησοῦς εἶπεν αὐτοῖς· πορευθέντεςἀπαγγείλατε Ἰωάννῃ ἃ ἀκούετε καὶ βλέπετε (Matt. 11:4); καὶ ἀποκριθεὶς εἶπεν αὐτοῖς· πορευθέντες ἀπαγγείλατε Ἰωάννῃ ἃ εἴδετε καὶ ἠκούσατε (Luke 7:22).
  • [56] But only once does BH have הַפֶּסַח with a double imperative with vav: Exod. 12:21: מִשְׁכוּ וּקְחוּ לָכֶם צֹאן לְמִשְׁפְּחֹתֵיכֶם וְשַׁחֲטוּ הַפָּסַח (“Select and take for yourselves lambs for your families, and slaughter the Passover offering”).
  • [57] We advocate a mixed style when reconstructing the conjectured Hebrew behind the Synoptic Gospels: BH for narrative portions of the text, and MH for dialogue. At L13 we switch to a MH style in HR: לְכוּ וְהָכִינוּ עָלֵינוּ אֶת הַפֶּסַח (HR, L13-14). This also will be the case for the words of the disciples’ question (HR, L17, L19-20) and Jesus’ reply (HR, L22-25, L27-29, L31-34, L36, L38-39, L42-46, L48).
  • [58] Or “association.”
  • [59] See comments about “prepare” at L7, L13-14, L19 and L57.
  • [60] As already noted by John Gill in the year 1746 in his comment on Matt. 26:17 (Gill, 7:324-325).
  • [61] See explanation at L42-44 τὸ πάσχα…φάγω.
  • [62] On this apparently Aramaic form representing a Hebrew word, see Randall Buth and Chad Pierce, “Hebraisti in Ancient Texts: Does Ἑβραϊστί Ever Mean ‘Aramaic’?” (JS2, 75). Because the Greek equivalent of פֶּסַח is πάσχα, Greek speakers notice what at first glance appears to be a theologically pregnant wordplay: πάσχα – πάσχω (“to suffer”).
  • [63] See Buth and Pierce, “Hebraisti in Ancient Texts” (JS2, 87-88).
  • [64] Shmuel Safrai, “Early Testimonies in the New Testament of Laws and Practices Relating to Pilgrimage and Passover” (JS1, 47-48).
  • [65] In MT we find אַיֵּה‎ 53xx, אֵיפֹה‎ 10xx and אָנָה‎ 42xx.
  • [66] In the Mishnah אֵיכָן occurs 26xx (m. Ber. 7:5; m. Shab. 1:3; 16:1, 3; m. Eruv. 10:15; m. Pes. 10:6; m. Yom. 5:5; m. Shek. 6:1, 3; m. Suk. 3:9; m. Meg. 2:3; m. Bab. Kam. 9:7, 8; m. Mak. 2:4; 3:10; m. Shevu. 3:1 [2xx]; 8:2, 3 [3xx], 4, 5, 6 [2xx]; m. Tam. 7:3) while הֵיכָן occurs only 3xx (m. Tem. 1:1; m. Tev. Yom 4:7; m. Yad. 3:1).
  • [67] “The implication of the disciples’ question is that the Passover lamb has just been slaughtered, so there is now need to retire to suitable quarters. They are asking where those quarters are” (Evans, 373).
  • [68] Papyrus 75, א and A agree against B not to add σοι φαγῖν τὸ πάσχα at Luke 22:9.
  • [69] Nolland’s judgment on Luke 22:10 is: “Luke makes a series of changes of vocabulary and syntax in line with his own preferences. In the move from ὑπάγετε (lit. ‘depart’; Mark 14:13) to ἰδοὺ εἰσελθόντων ὑμῶν (lit. ‘behold, as you enter’), Luke not only uses favored words but also recognizes that after his earlier reconstruction an imperative at this point would be out of place” (Nolland, Luke, 1,033).
  • [70] See Plummer, Luke, 492-493. Scholars including Gill (7:325), Swete (331) and Collins (647) favor the “divine foreknowledge” interpretation. According to Boring, “This sub-unit is often called the ‘preparation for the Passover,’ but Mark devotes only a brief clause devoid of details to the actual preparation (16c, ‘they prepared the Passover meal’). A more appropriate title would be ‘Jesus’ foreknowledge and authority exhibited in securing a room in which to celebrate the Passover.’” See M. Eugene Boring, Mark: A Commentary (NTL; Louisville: Westminster John Knox, 2006), 387.
  • [71] Lowe suggests that “the miraculous character of the [water carrier] story is paralleled most closely by the story, in Matt. alone, of the miraculous payment of the temple tax (Matt. 17:24-27: ‘Go to the sea, and the first fish you catch…’), a tale that is thoroughly un-Hebraic in form.” Notice also Jesus’ prophetic knowledge of Nathanael (John 1:47-48) and the Samaritan woman (John 4:18) in un-Hebraic contexts.
  • [72] Proponents of this view include Hagner (2:765), Evans (373), Plummer (Luke, 492) and Mason (Luke, 248). But Hooker disagreed: “There is no suggestion that Jesus is in hiding, or that the preparations are being carried out in secret; anyone could have followed the disciples just as they followed their guide.” See Morna D. Hooker, The Gospel According to Saint Mark (BNTC; London: A. & C. Black, 1991; repr., Hendrickson), 335.
  • [73] France (Mark, 565) comments: “In Mark’s narrative we have had no basis to suppose that Jesus had any supporters or even acquaintances in Jerusalem. This is one of several indications of the artificiality of Mark’s narrative structure.”
  • [74] See Chana Safrai, “Jesus’ Devout Jewish Parents and Their Child Prodigy.”
  • [75] See Plummer, Luke, 492.
  • [76] See Moulton-Howard, 15, 23, 447; Moule, Idiom, 183. Ἰδού appears 1,092xx in LXX, but the word never appears in the works of Josephus, who wrote almost half a million words! Of its 200 occurrences in NT, ἰδού appears 126xx in the Synoptic Gospels, 19xx in the first half of Acts and 26xx in Revelation. These are the more Hebraic portions of NT. By contrast, it appears but 4xx in John and 4xx in the second half of Acts. Furthermore, in the Synoptic Gospels ἰδού occurs 8xx a Lukan-Matthean minor agreement against Mark. Matthew and Luke agree 18xx on the use of ἰδού at the same spot in their narratives: 2 of these are agreements with Mark (TT; Matt. 19:27 = Mark 10:28 = Luke 18:28; Matt. 20:18 = Mark 10:33 = Luke 18:31), 8 are agreements against Mark (TT; Matt. 8:2 = Luke 5:12; Matt. 9:2 = Luke 5:18; Matt. 9:18 = Luke 8:41; Matt. 10:16 = Luke 10:3; Matt. 17:3 = Luke 9:30; Matt. 24:23 = Luke 17:21; Matt. 24:25 = Luke 17:21; Matt. 26:47 = Luke 22:47) and 8 are found in DT contexts (Matt. 11:8 = Luke 7:25; Matt. 11:10 = Luke 7:27; Matt. 11:19 = Luke 7:34; Matt. 12:41 = Luke 11:32; Matt. 12:42 = Luke 11:31; Matt. 23:38 = Luke 13:35; Matt. 24:26 = Luke 17:23; Matt. 24:26 = Luke 17:23). Matthew and Mark agree 6xx on the use of ἰδού at the same spot in their narratives: 2 of these are agreements with Luke (TT), 2 are agreements against Luke (TT; Matt. 12:47 = Mark 3:32; Matt. 13:3 = Mark 4:3) and 2 are in TT contexts where Luke has no corresponding phrase (Matt. 26:45 = Mark 14:41; Matt. 26:46 = Mark 14:42).
  • [77] See Bendavid, 343.
  • [78] Boring (Mark: A Commentary, 387) comments on Mark’s ὑπάγετε εἰς τὴν πόλιν (Mark 14:13; L13): “The command to ‘go into the city’ presupposes they are outside it.”
  • [79] Lindsey (LHNC, 83, 919, 972) supposed that the author of Mark remembered the ἀπαντᾶν in Luke 17:12 and used it as a replacement for the συναντᾶν in Luke 22:10. The conjectured substitution of ἀπαντᾶν here is similar to Mark’s replacement of Luke’s πολλαπλασίονα with ἑκατονταπλασίονα (Mark 10:30; Luke 18:30), in that ἑκατονταπλασίονα also appears only twice in NT (Mark 10:30; Luke 8:8). See “LOY Excursus: Mark’s Editorial Style.”
  • [80] Therefore, in respect to foreknowledge, “A man will meet you,” rather than “You will meet a man,” would have no significance, as France (Mark, 563) remarks: “ἀπαντήσει ὑμῖν (rather than ‘you will meet’) suggests that the man is on the lookout for them, rather than a chance encounter.”
  • [81] Cf., e.g., Keener (624 n. 46): “Perhaps because slaves…, especially female slaves, often carried water (Test. Job 21:2-3; cf. John 2:7; Gen. Rab. 53:13; 93:6; cf. Eurip. Electra 55, 140…), the disciples could readily recognize the particular man in Mark 14:13.”
  • [82] Guido Baltes (personal communication) traces this suggestion to M.-J. Lagrange of the Ecole Biblique in Jerusalem, who wrote, “If one can judge from the present day, I see only women carrying jars, while men usually carry water in skins.” See Marie-Joseph Lagrange, Evangile selon Saint Marc (Paris: J. Gabalda, 1911), 350.
  • [83] Note that in Avot de-Rabbi Natan, Version B, chpt. 21 (ed. Schechter, 45) we find a description of a typical workman who carries a wine jug (חָבִית) on his shoulder.
  • [84] R. Steven Notley, “Jesus and the Essene Passover,” under the subheading “The Myth of an Essene Quarter.”
  • [85] Ibid.
  • [86] See Gill, 7:480.
  • [87] See Plummer, Luke, 492.
  • [88] On the other hand, δεῖνα occurs 12xx in Philo, 2xx in papyri and perhaps 1x in Pseudepigrapha (Luz [3:353 n. 25] cites Lucian, Soloec. 5:6; Revivescentes 38; Indoct. 4; and Demosthenes, Or. 13.5).
  • [89] “Matthew represents the unnamed host as τὸν δεῖνα; like the English ‘such and such’ it is a way of representing a name which one does not know or has some reason for not actually reporting. In Matthew’s scene it represents some name Jesus is understood to have actually mentioned” (Nolland, Matt., 1,062). “‘Go into the city to so-and-so’…clearly implies prearrangement on the part of Jesus” (Fitzmyer, 1,383).
  • [90] We find Luke’s λέγει σοι in Bel and the Dragon (v. 34): τάδε λέγει σοι κύριος ὁ θεός (“These things says to you the LORD God”). The Mishnah does not have the phrase אוֹמֵר לְךָ, but it has 27xx אוֹמֵר לוֹ, אוֹמֵר לָהֶם, etc. In MT אוֹמֵר לְךָ appears once in Isa. 41:13: הָאֹמֵר לְךָ (LXX: ὁ λέγων σοι). In MT when God or another (e.g., a king) sends messengers to someone to communicate a message, the words of the sender are couched in a standard form: “Thus said so-and-so.” The word order in MT and LXX is verb (first) and name of sender (second), as in Luke, and the verb for “say” is in the pres. indic.: λέγει. In 1 Kgs. 20:2-3 (LXX: 3 Kgdms. 21:2-3), for example, when King Ben-hadad of Aram sends messengers to Ahab, MT reads, כֹּה אָמַר בֶּן הֲדַד (“Thus said Ben-hadad”), and LXX translated as τάδε λέγει υἱὸς Αδερ (“These things says the son of Ader”). In 3 Kgdms. 21:2, LXX even has the phrase εἰς τὴν πόλιν (“into the city”), as in Luke 22:10. When Jacob sends messengers to his brother Esau (Gen. 32:4-5), he commands them to say (according to LXX): οὕτως ἐρεῖτε τῷ κυρίῳ μου Ησαυ οὕτως λέγει ὁ παῖς σου Ιακωβ (“Thus you will say to my lord Esau: ‘Thus says your servant Jacob’”). Not only are the messengers to say, οὕτως λέγει ὁ παῖς σου Ιακωβ, the word order of Luke, but Jacob’s instructions are, οὕτως ἐρεῖτε τῷ κυρίῳ μου Ησαυ, with the future ἐρεῖτε of the verb λέγειν, just as in Luke 22:11 (L33), in contrast to the εἴπατε of Matthew and Mark. For similar messenger examples, see Gen. 45:9; Exod. 4:22 (with ἐρεῖς); 5:1, 10; 7:16-17 (with ἐρεῖς), 26 (with ἐρεῖς); 8:16 (with ἐρεῖς); 9:1 (with ἐρεῖς), 13 (with ἐρεῖς); Num. 20:14; 1 Kgs. 20:5, 9 (LXX: 3 Kgdms. 21:5, 9); 21:19 (LXX: 3 Kgdms. 20:19); 2 Kgs. 1:16 (LXX: 4 Kgdms. 1:16); 9:18 (LXX: 4 Kgdms. 9:18). Notice λέγει τὸ πνεῦμα in Rev. 14:13.
  • [91] ὁ διδάσκαλος (ho didaskalos, “the teacher”) is used in NT as a title of Jesus only three other contexts: in Mark 5:35; Luke 8:49 (“While he was still speaking, there came from the ruler’s house some who said, ‘Your daughter is dead. Why trouble the Teacher any further?’”); John 11:28 (“she went and called her sister Mary, saying quietly, ‘The Teacher is here and is calling for you’”; RSV); and John 13:13-14 (“You call me Teacher and Lord; and you are right, for so I am”; RSV). The ὁ διδάσκαλος in Matt. 10:24-25 (cf. Luke 6:40) is the Hebraic generic usage meaning “a teacher.” (In that saying ὁ κύριος stands in parallel to ὁ διδάσκαλος, and δοῦλος stands in parallel to μαθητής.)
  • [92] Plummer (Luke, 493) wrote, “Like ὁ κύριος ([Luke] xix. 31), this implies that the man knows Jesus, and is perhaps in some degree a disciple.” Cf. Hagner, 2:765.
  • [93] Or, if it is impossible to omit a possessive pronoun, Greek authors prefer to place it before the noun. They rarely place possessive pronouns after the noun, as in Hebrew syntax.
  • [94] These 6 instances are: 4 Kgdms. 18:22; Isa. 1:10; 35:2; 52:10; 61:6; Jer. 8:14.
  • [95] An example of the omission of a possessive pronoun in the transition from Hebrew to Greek can also be found in the two versions of the Lord’s Prayer. Matthew’s more Hebraic version reads, Πάτερ ἡμῶν (= אָבִינוּ, “Our Father”; Matt. 6:9), whereas Luke’s improved Greek version reads simply, Πάτερ (“Father”; Luke 11:2).
  • [96] Lindsey (LHNS, to Matt. 26:18) points out the parallel in Luke 21:8 in a less redacted context, “Many will come…saying, ‘…The time is near (ὀ καιρὸς ἤγγικεν)!’”
  • [97] Luz (3:354) comments: “The readers will probably understand this statement of Jesus first of all in terms of [Matt.] 26:2: Jesus’ καιρός is the time of his passion…. Similarly, but even more pointedly, the Johannine Jesus will then designate the passion as ‘my time’ (7:8; cf. v. 6) and as ‘my hour’ (2:4; cf. 7:30; 8:20; cf. 12:23; 13:1; 17:1). The language and the theology of the Gospel of John are previewed in Matthew.”
  • [98] Gundry (Matt., 525) observes that “the concept of nearness appears often in eschatological passages (see, e.g., Isa. 13:6; Zeph. 1:7; Rev. 1:3; 22:10).”
  • [99] Martin argues that katalyma is “incorrectly translated as ‘inn’” at Luke 2:7 and that “the reference is to the guest room of a house” (Raymond A. Martin, Studies in the Life and Ministry of the Historical Jesus [New York: University Press of America, 1995], 12-13).
  • [100] Ibid.
  • [101] The noun κατάλυμα appears 14xx in LXX as the translation of several different Hebrew words: אֹהֶל, מָלוֹן, לִשְׁכָּה, מִשְׁכָּן, נָוֶה.
  • [102] Depending on the context, עֲלִיָּה can mean “upstairs room (upper room),” “upper floor (upper story)” and “attic.” Furstenberg suggests that κατάλυμα may represent עֲלִיָּה, which is found in m. Shab. 1:4: “…in the עֲלִיָּה [upstairs room] of Haninah b. Hezekiah b. Gurion.” The noun עֲלִיָּה appears 52xx in the Mishnah. The three most interesting and illustrative of these occurrences are: m. Eruv. 6:6, where טְרִיקְלִין (ṭriklin, “banquet hall”), חֲדָרִים (adārim, “rooms”) and עֲלִיּוֹת (‘aliyōt, “upstairs rooms”) are found in the same passage; m. Nid. 2:5, where we find the phrase הַחֶדֶר הַפְּרוֹזְדּוֹר וְהָעֲלִייָּה (“the room, the front hall and the upstairs room”); and m. Bech. 7:3, where חֶדֶר (“room”) and עֲלִייָּה (“upstairs room”) appear in the same clause.

    The עֲלִיָּה was usually accessed by an outside staircase. On houses in first-century Israel, see Shmuel Safrai, “Home and Family,” in Safrai-Stern (728-792, esp. 730-732).

  • [103] The noun τρικλίνιον is not found in LXX or NT. The Hebrew equivalent of τρικλίνιον, טְרִיקְלִין, appears 5xx in the Mishnah (m. Eruv. 6:6; m. Bab. Bat. 1:6; 6:4; m. Avot 4:16; m. Mid. 1:6). The most well known of these occurrences is in m. Avot 4:16: “Rabbi Akiva says: ‘This world is like a פְרוֹזְדּוֹר [front hall, antechamber, vestibule] before the world to come. Prepare yourself in the פְרוֹזְדּוֹר so that you will enter the טְרִיקְלִין [banquet hall].’” We learn the dimensions of a טְרִיקְלִין from m. Mid. 1:6: “He who wants to build a טְרִיקְלִין, [builds it] 10 by 10 cubits [15 by 15 feet].”
  • [104] In LXX חֶדֶר, which occurs 39xx in MT, is translated with ταμιεῖον 31xx.
  • [105] The noun חֶדֶר is found 8xx in the Mishnah: m. Eruv. 6:6; m. Sot. 8:7 (bridal chamber); m. Bab. Bat. 3:7; 4:1; m. Bech. 7:3; m. Ohol. 8:6; m. Nid. 2:5; 7:4.
  • [106] See Boring, Mark: A Commentary, 388.
  • [107] By chance the form תַּלְמִידַי (“my disciples,” the equivalent of οἱ μαθηταί μου in L43) does not appear in the Mishnah; however, as reported by the Talmud, R. Eliezer said: “Much Torah have I taught, yet my disciples [תַּלְמִידַי] have only drawn from me as much as a painting stick from its tube” (b. Sanh. 68a). For a second example of תַּלְמִידַי, see y. Taan. 2:8 [65d]. In DSS תַּלְמִיד does not occur in any form.
  • [108] Compare the contrast between master and student in a sentence from the Mishnah: “Rabban Gamaliel stood up and kissed him [his disciple] on his head” (m. Rosh Hash. 2:9).
  • [109] The combination καὶ αὐτός (with the pron. in the nom. in all its genders and numbers) appears 42xx in Luke. This combination occurs in Mark only 5xx (Mark 4:38 [Markan redaction]; 6:47 [Markan redaction]; 8:29 [Markan redaction]; 15:43; and here); and only 4xx in Matthew (Matt. 20:10; 21:27 [Matthean redaction]; 25:44; 27:57 [= Mark 15:43]).
  • [110] E.g., the combination κἀκεῖνος (with the pron. ἐκεῖνος in the nom. in all its genders and numbers) appears in Luke only here (Luke 22:12) and in Luke 11:7; in Mark only 3xx (Mark 4:20; 16:11, 13 [both occurrences in Mark’s “Longer Ending”]); and once in Matthew (Matt. 15:18). The combination appears in LXX 5xx (3 Kgdms. 3:21; Job 31:15; Wis. 18:1; Isa. 66:5; Susanna 57), but in the works of Josephus 88xx (e.g., Ant. 1:9, 323; 2:3, 94; 4:107; etc.).
  • [111] The Koine ἀνάγαιον (variants: ἀνάγειον, ἀνάγεον) is the equivalent of the Classical ἀνώγαιον or ἀνώγεον. In Xenophon (Anabasis 5.4.29; cf. Antiphanes, Frag. 312) we find ἀνώγεον referring to “the upper floor of a house, used as a granary” (see entry “ἀνώγαιον” in LSJ, 169).
  • [112] A more common word for upstairs room is ὑπερῷον, the LXX equivalent of עֲלִיָּה, which appears 4xx in NT (Acts 1:13: 9:37, 39; 20:8), 17xx in LXX, 5xx in Josephus and 2xx in Philo.
  • [113] Fitzmyer (1,383) comments: “In LXX Ezek 23:41 klinē estrōmenē, ‘a spread couch,’ suggests the cushions needed for reclining at table.” Gould (261) comments: “ἐστρωμένον—spread or strewn, is used of making up a bed or couch, and here of making up, or furnishing a room with couches.” Nolland (Luke, 1,034) comments: “ἐστρωμένον is literally ‘spread out,’ but here ‘set up for a banquet.’” France (Matt., 984) reasons that since “Mark 14:15 says that the room was already prepared for the meal before the disciples came…all they had to prepare was the food.”
  • [114] Compare our reconstruction to Delitzsch’s translation, who rendered ἀνάγαιον μέγα ἐστρωμένον (in Mark 14:15 and Luke 22:12) as עֲלִיָּה גְדוֹלָה מֻצָּעָה (“large furnished upstairs room”). The noun רהיטים and the adjective מרוהט are modern Hebrew and not found in BH or MH.
  • [115] On Markan style, which includes adding words to the text of his source, see “LOY Excursus: Mark’s Editorial Style.”
  • [116] On participle + δέ + aorist as the equivalent of vav-consecutive + vav-consecutive, see Rich Man Declines the Kingdom of Heaven, Comment to L37-41.
  • [117] On the author of Mark’s redactional methods, see “LOY Excursus: Mark’s Editorial Style.”
  • [118] Luz (3:354) comments: “Matthew’s language follows here a widespread biblical formula that Rudolf Pesch has significantly called Ausƒührungsformel (“execution formula” or “fulfillment formula”). It appears several times in Matthew (1:20-25; 21:2-7; cf. 28:15)…. For Matthew discipleship means to belong to the family of those brothers and sisters of Jesus who do the will of the heavenly Father (12:50). This makes it understandable why it would have made no sense for him if only two disciples had carried out Jesus’ command and the others had not been involved.”
  • [119] Here, as elsewhere in this passage, τὸ πάσχα probably refers to the Passover lamb, not the Passover meal (see above, Comment to L42-44). Although Christian readers today are more accustomed to interpreting these verses as though they referred to preparations for a meal, standard Hebrew lexicons and dictionaries give no examples of this usage of פֶּסַח. Even-Shoshan (Millon, 1074) lists only the senses “Passover festival” and “Passover sacrifice.” Jastrow (1194) indeed lists “Passover meal” as one of the three meanings of פֶּסַח, but gives no examples of this meaning of the word. We have found no examples in ancient Hebrew literature of פֶּסַח in the sense of “Passover meal.” Can פֶּסַח in the phrases φαγεῖν τὸ πάσχα or ἑτοιμαζεῖν τὸ πάσχα (L14-15, L19-20, L42-44, L57) ever mean “eat the Passover meal”? Apparently not. Note that in Luke 22:15, when Jesus said “I have so very much wanted to eat this Passover,” the meat of the roasted lamb would have been right before them. Here, too, the reference is to the Passover lamb.
  • [120] Lightfoot (342-343) details the necessary preparations. According to Hooker (The Gospel According to Saint Mark, 335): “The preparations included the provision of unleavened bread, wine and bitter herbs, and the roasting of the lamb, which was killed in the temple in the afternoon.” Note again m. Pes. 7:2: “An anecdote about Rabban Gamliel, who said to Tabi his slave: ‘Go and roast the Passover lamb for us on a grill.’” For the Passover meal and the Passover holiday, as it was eaten and as it was celebrated in the Second Temple period, see Safrai-Safrai, 9-15.
  • [121] Taylor (536) comments about these parallels: “These agreements show that the two stories are composed by the same writer, but they do not suggest that they are doublets. The parallelism is like that already noted in the narratives of the Deaf Mute (vii. 31-7) and the Blind Man at Bethsaida (viii. 22-6) and illustrates the tendency of Mark to repeat himself.”
  • [122] On the historical present in Mark, see “LOY Excursus: Mark’s Editorial Style,” under the subheading “Mark’s Freedom and Creativity.”
  • [123] See Comment to L49.
  • [124] “As often, Matthew omits Mark’s recitative ὅτι. Luke agrees with the omission” (Gundry, Matt., 525, to Matt. 26:18).
  • [125] For more on Mark’s reworking of his sources, see “LOY Excursus: Mark’s Editorial Style.”
  • [126] Matt. 26:17 (L6-8) reads: ποῦ θέλεις ἑτοιμάσωμεν.
  • [127] Cf. Luz (3:351-353), Beare (Earliest, 223 §234) and Hagner (2:763).
  • [128] Wherever Luke copied from FR, one cannot view Anth. directly, but only indirectly through FR. One can compare the much more “Hebraic Greek” of Anth. with the less “Hebraic Greek” of FR in, e.g., the two versions of the Lord’s Prayer: Matthew’s Hebraic-Greek version (Matt. 6:9-13), presumably copied from Anth., and Luke’s redacted “Greek-Greek” version (Luke 11:2-4), copied from FR.
  • [129] Most authorities assume that Matthew copied Mark’s text, occasionally inserting words and passages from conjectured Q (Matthew’s second source, the source he shared in common with Luke). Each place where Matthew deserts the text of Mark is extremely significant, since at these points in his text it is possible that Matthew began copying his second source. In this pericope Matthew frequently deserts Mark (e.g., in L40-41), and these differences include three minor agreements with Luke against Mark, and another three agreements with Luke against Mark in omission. In such a synoptic situation, it behooves us to proceed with caution, carefully considering each element in the text of Matthew’s Gospel. Lowe’s arguments are well taken.
  • David N. Bivin

    David N. Bivin

    David N. Bivin is founder and editor of Jerusalem Perspective. A native of Cleveland, Oklahoma, U.S.A., Bivin has lived in Israel since 1963, when he came to Jerusalem on a Rotary Foundation Fellowship to do postgraduate work at the Hebrew University. He studied at the Hebrew…
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