Greek Study Luke 14:1-14
v1 και εγενετο (γινομαι) aor. and it came to pass this phrase introduces a new episode.
σαββατω (ον) dat. one Sabbath; the dative is temporal "on the Sabbath day."
τινος των αρχοντων Φαρισαιων gen. "a prominent Pharisee" - The use of multiple genitives is unusual, there is a possessive (the house of), a partitive (he is both prominent and others are subordinate to him; i.e. he is one those who exercise authority over other Pharisees, so a leading churchman; a bishop of sorts.)
φαγειν (εσθιω) aor. inf. "to eat" - infinitive forms a purpose clause; Jesus went to the Pharisee's home to eat – teaching and healing were not initially on the menu!
ησαν παρατηρουμενοι (παρατηρεω) pres. part. "[he] was being carefully watched" - a periphrastic imperfect construction expressing durative action; so he was being surveilled.
v2 και ιδου and behold, indicating surprise, the unexpected presence of this sick man at the meal - either his arrival or more likely being placed before Jesus to see if Jesus would bend/break the Sabbath law regarding healing.
υδρωπικος adj. "[a man] suffering from abnormal swelling" literally water in his limbs (CHF or “dropsy/edema” – a malady that Jewish teachers often associated with sexual sin.)
v3 απακριθεις (αποκρινομαι) pas. part. "[Jesus] asked" attendant circumstance participle expressing action accompanying the verb ειπεν - an unusual Semitic construction, more common in the Greek – so this story is likely preserved in the Gentile community – one might hermeneutically speculate as to why.
εξεστιν "is it lawful" - permitted
θεραπευσαι (θεραπευω) aor. inf. "to heal" - infinitive serves as the subject of the verb "is lawful"; lit. "is to heal lawful on the Sabbath."
τω σαββατω/ (ον) dat. "on the Sabbath" - Dative of time. These churchmen can't say yes as it would defy tradition, but they also are aware a good argument can be mounted from scripture to support yes. And they can’t say no because they would prove themselves to be heartless, seeing as it was they who brought the sick person to meet Jesus. Hoisted on their own petard, as the old saying goes.
v4 ησυχασαν (ησυχαζω) "they remained silent" - in a legal setting silence means approval, but as they are cornered it is more likely embarrassment!
επιλαβομενος (επιλαμβανομαι) aor. mid. part. "so taking hold of [the man]" - adverbial, expressing result, "so as a result” – a verb is not used elsewhere of Jesus’ healing, it conveys a tactile sense. Jesus uses some form of overt physical contact he does not use elsewhere. Another peculiar, if not singular element to this story
v5 τινος gen. pro. "if one" pronoun introduces an interrogative clause which has two sub clauses, the second being the question. The Pharisees understood it was proper to relieve the immediate distress of someone on the Sabbath, even that of an animal, though the Essenes believed this could only apply to a person.
υιος ... ονος "son " – is a textual variant as "ass" fits the context better and has a strong Old Testament precedent. But a change from "son" to "ass" is more easily explained than a change from "ass" to "son".
και ουκ and not. This negation is used to show that Jesus expects a positive answer.
v6 ανταποκριθηναι (ανταποκρινομαι) pas. inf. "[and they had nothing] to say" – lit. "They could make no answer to the argument put forth by Jesus." (If only politics worked this way in the real world!)
v7 επεχων (επεξω) pres. part. "when he noticed" τους κεκλημενους (καλεω) pas. part. " the guests" εξελεγοντο (εκλεγομαι) mid. imperf. "picked" - middle voice is best "choosing for themselves" πρωτοκλισιας (α) "the places of honor" αραβολην (η) "[he told them this] parable"
Teaching parables are often little more than illustrations used to make a point, so idiomatically "he gave them a little word of advice". The implication is these churchmen demonstrated by their actions the inability to promote their own righteousness let alone God’s.
v8 οταν + subj. "when" υπο someone γαμους (ος) "wedding feast" technically the banquet hall; "when you are invited by anyone to a banquet hall"
μη κατακλιθης (κατακλινω) aor. pas. subj. "do not take" a subjunctive of prohibition.
μηποτε + subj. "lest” negated purpose; "as it may turn out that..."
η κεκλημενος "may have been invited" - " a more distinguished guest than yourself has been invited".
v9 ο .... καλεσας (καλεω) aor. part. "the host who invited [both of you]" ελθων (ερχομαι) aor. part. "will come [and say]" σοι dat. pro. "to you" τουτω dat. pro. "[give] this person [your seat]" και τοτε "and then” μετα αισχυνης (η) "humiliated" (lit. “with shame”) preposition μετα + gen. is adverbial expressing manner in the sense of being shamed as opposed to feeling shame. Honored guests often arrived late (and for effect) so it was pragmatically unwise to go for the more honored seat early. (At this point honor is determined by social status, by 300 AD it was determined by age.)
εσχατον adj. "least" - adjective is elative i.e. the "lower" rather than the "last" seat.
v10 οταν + subj. "when" Given the nature of Jesus' sarcasm here, which is not overly evident, we may need to expand the opening clause: "when you are invited to a dinner party and you really what to make an impression on the guests (given the high opinion that you have of yourself), then πορευθεις (πορευομαι) aor. pas. part. "[take the lowest place]" αναπεσε (αναπιπτω) imp. sit down ινα + subj. "so that"
ο κεκληκως (καλεω) perf. part. "host" σοι dat. "[will say] to you" ανωτερον adv. "[move up] to a better place" - [move up] higher. The verb προσαναβηθι, "move up", may have the sense of "come up", ie. the host is inviting the person to come closer.
v11 ο υψων (υψοω) part. "[everyone] who exalts" - in the sense of lifting up to a high station ταπεινωθησεται (ταπεινοω) fut. pas. "will be humbled" the agent of the action is God - the proud, particularly the self-righteous, are blind to reality to the extent of not even getting pride right. (Luke is likely referring back to the Magnificat.)
ο ταπεινων (πατεινω) pres. part. "he who humbles [himself]".
v12 τω κεκληκοτι (καλεω) perf. part. "to his host" ποιης (ποιεω) sub. "you give" δειπνον (ον) "dinner" the evening meal - the 2 meals are the two main meals of the day a late morning and a late afternoon.
μη φωνει (φωνεω) pres. imp. "do not invite" present tense implies that the command urges an ongoing process; this principle of reciprocity was dominant in the first century, as today.
ανταποδομα (α ατος) "repaid" positive or negative, here a positive.
v13 αλλ (αλλα) "but" - Strong adversative δοχην (η) "banquet" πτωχους (ος) "poor" - beggar a person socially disadvantaged due to limited resources the list in this passage is of different types of socially disadvantaged people. The list appears again in v21 of the following parable.
v14 μακαριος εση "you will be blessed" a predicate adjective; "If you show reciprocity in extending hospitality, you will be blessed." The blessing, given the context, is to be exalted in the sight of God.
ανταποδοθησεται (ανταποδιδωμι) fut. pas. "you will be repaid" God is the agent.
των δικαιων gen. adj. "of the righteous" - the Pharisees believed in the general resurrection of the dead to judgment; some to reward, others to punishment.