The bull of St Luke


Two Healings, Lk 5,12-26

We have already seen how two incidents which were kept apart in Mark's Gospel have been brought closer together by Luke.

Now read the story of two healings and then compare them closely with Mark's account. The major change that I've already mentioned is the closer link between the two incidents (5,17 & Mk 2,1). You will though find a whole array of other minor alterations of Mark by Luke which do tell us much about his interests.

For leprosy, see Leviticus 13-14. This goes into considerable detail and includes the sacrifices required for purification
What is perhaps unexpected about 5,12? What is surprising about Jesus'reaction in verse 13?

Where in Mark do we find the equivalent of 5,16? Why might Luke have made the change here?

In verse 17, Luke introduces the Pharisees. Where do they appear in Mark's account? See also 5,21. What is their importance for Luke? What is said about Jesus in this verse?

What is the notable detail added by Luke in verse 18?

What is distinctive about the roof in verse 19?

Ill health and sins are traditionally linked. See Deuteronomy 5,9-10. Look at Mark 2,5 and then note how Luke changes Jesus' address to the sick man. (This point may be obscured by the translations; look for example at the NRSV as well as the NABRE footnote.)

Although Luke has omitted a detail from Mark 2,8, the point is still made in 5,22.

Verse 23 is then the heart of the matter, followed by verse 24 where "Son of Man" is found for the first time in this Gospel. For the background to this title, see Ezekiel 2,1 and Daniel 7,13.

What is the reaction of the man and the crowd in verses 25-26?

How do the people differ from their leaders?

Time to look at my response.

We can now move on to read 5,27-39, the two stories at the centre of this section.