Three Camels and the Needle

In Luke 11, Jesus gives us a truly odd juxtaposition — until we learn to think of generational bloodguilt more biblically than we usually do. Jesus says that one generation killed the prophets, and a subsequent generation builds a tomb for that same prophet (Luke 11:47). According to carnal calculus, building a tomb of honor for a martyr is a way of repudiating the murderous deeds of those who killed him.
But Jesus tags it as a way of endorsing those murderous deeds (Luke 11:48). The word used there is suneudokeo —  the same word that Paul uses of the unbeliever who is willing to stay together with the believer in marriage (1 Cor. 7:13). It could be rendered as “pleased to be together with.”

This is, truly, one of the deepest and most inscrutable of all Jesus’ sayings — and He has a lot of them. This is one of the hardest of His hard sayings. And, at the very least, the builders of tombs and cathedrals should beware. The namers of Reformed colleges likewise should beware. The invokers of ancient glories should always watch their step. Understanding the history of the kingdom is like getting three camels through the eye of the needle.

Theology That Bites Back



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