Greek Study Luke 11:1-13
v1 και εγενετο (γινομαι) aor. "once upon a time".
εν τω + inf. "[Jesus] was" - This preposition with the articular infinitive of the verb to-be, forms a temporal clause of indefinite time; "once, while he was"
προσευχομενον (προσευχομαι) pres. part. "praying" - a present periphrastic construction, underlining the durative aspect of the verb.
εν τοπω τινι "in a certain place" –an indefinite location.
των μαθητων (ης ου) gen. "[one] of his disciples" - adjectival, partitive.
διδαζον (διδασκω) aor. imp. "teach [us]" - imperative, aorist indicating urgency.
προσερχεσθαι (προσερχομαι) pres. inf. "to pray" - infinitive forms an object clause expressing what Jesus should "teach", namely, " to pray. The request is prompted by the disciples once again finding Jesus at prayer.
καθως "just as" - we don't know how or what John taught his disciples when it came to prayer. The disciples are probably asking for a distinctive prayer for disciples of Jesus, in the same way John's disciples had a distinctive prayer.
v2 οταν + subj. "when [you pray]"
Πατερ (πατηρ) voc. "Father" An affectionate term, so "Daddy", although an adult would not use this word in this childish sense. Such an intimate address to Yahweh is a revolutionary act, although there are some Old Testament precedents, Ps.89:26, Jer. 3:4, 19. Though Jesus taught his disciples to address God as "our Father", he never included himself in the "our" since his relationship to the Father is unique. For Jesus it is always "my Father."
αγιασθητω (αιαζω) aor. pas. imp. "hallowed be" - held in reverence, glorified, sanctified. The aorist indicates an eschatological honoring past action with daily ongoing recognition of his person.
το ονομα (α ατος) "[your] name" – Your being, whole self.
η βασιλεια (α) "[you] kingdom" - Note variant, "thy holy Spirit come on us and purify us", rejected by most, but very Lukan. Most commentators understand the kingdom of God in the sense of "God's rule of righteousness " the term is used dynamically of the act of ruling. Possibly the eschatological rule of God through Christ, although the kingdom is a now/not yet reality. The term "kingdom of God" is used by Luke 31 times, and "kingdom" 6. Some scholars suggest "dominion" in the sense of authority and territory.
ελθετω (ερχομαι) aor. imp. "come" - be inaugurated although the kingdom, in the sense of God's eschatological reign, is already inaugurated and so the sense is more likely "be realized" or "consummated."
v3 In the Gk., note the interesting position of the object, "bread", ie. it is in front of the imperative, "give". As noted above, the petitions in the Lord's prayer most likely rest on God's promised blessings to his children. St. Francis believed our daily provision is promised by God, realized by faith, but this view does not properly address the intent of Jesus' words. It seems likely that survival provisions are not promised to believers, who, with all humanity, face the vagaries of life in a world broken by sin. What then is the promised "bread"?
διδου (διδωμι) pres. imp. "give" - present tense is durative, activity as an ongoing process, so "continually give."
το καθ ημεραν "with each day" - "day by day."
τον επιουσιον adj. "daily [bread]" - perhaps remembering the provision of Manna for Israel in their journey through the wilderness. So for the NT saint the provision is not physical "bread" but spiritual "bread", eg. the gifts of the Spirit, a "bread" which is promised. Other possible interpretations have been suggested and tend to be based on the etymology of "daily", a word which remains somewhat of a mystery.
v4 αφες (αφιημι) aor. imp. "forgive" - the aorist imperative encapsulates the whole of the action and therefore leans toward an eschatological forgiveness at the final judgment. For the daily forgiveness of sins an imperfective tense would have been used, none-the-less, many commentators argue for a "regular forgtiving", Stein. This position my find support in the fact that there is no evidence for the use of the present imperative of this verb, so Nolland.
ημιν dat. pro. "us" - Dative of interest, advantage.
ημων gen. pro. "our [sins]" - The genitive is adjectival, possessive, although may be classified as verbal, subjective.
γαρ "for" - introducing a causal clause explaining why God would answer the prayer, namely, "because" even sinful humanity has the capacity to forgive.
αυτοι "we ourselves”
αφιομεν (αφιημι) pres. "forgive" - present tense is durative, so "practice forgiveness".
οφειλοντι (οφειλω) pres. part. "who sins against" - participle is adjectival, attributive, limiting "everyone". Not literal debts, but rather, the word "debt" and "sin" were interchangeable for Second Temple Jews, although this was not so in classical Greek which is why Luke replaces Matthew's "debts" with "sins" in "forgive us our sins".
μη εισενεγκης (εισφερω) aor. subj. "lead us not" – a prohibitive subjunctive. The with the subjunctive, forms a prohibition that covers, not the commencement of the action, "do not begin to", but the whole of the action; so "do not let us be overcome by..."
πειρασμον (ος) "temptation" possibly eschatological tribulation when even the faithful fall away. The request is not that we be spared such tests, since such tests are promised, but that we not succumb to them.
v5 Parable of The Midnight Friend, v5-8 is often treated as if teaching persistence in prayer. But this seems unlikely. Given the thrust of the teaching sayings following the parable, it seems more likely that the parable teaches a "how much more" lesson. If a midnight guest can get what he wants from a reluctant friend, imagine what we can get from a gracious God.
χρησον (κιχρημι) aor. imp. "lend" - As in allow me to have the use of…"
v7 κακεινος "the one [inside]" – a derogatory or sarcastic reference.
αποκριθεις (αποκρινομαι) aor. pas. part. "answers" -attendant circumstance participle expressing action accompanying the main verb "may say", pleonastic (redundant).
μη ... παρεχε (παρεχω) pres. imp. "don't bother" - present tense is durative expressing ongoing trouble. Probably the image is of a small house where getting up to open the door will wake the household.
μοι dat. pro. "me" - to/for me. Dative of indirect object / interest, disadvantage.
μετ (μετα) + gen. "with" - [the children of me are] with [me in the bed] expressing association/accompaniment.
ου δυναμαι pres. "I am not able” possibly stronger; "I won't " ναστας (ανιστημι) aor. part. "get up".
v8 We finally come to the answer of the rhetorical question asked in v5. Of course, in verse five the question was formed in the second person plural, but this seems to have been lost in the journey and is further disturbed by the addition of "I tell you" (this phrase is often used to indicate an application of, or conclusion to, an argument and so can be left untranslated).
ει και + ind. "though" - a concessive conditional clause, 1st class, where the condition stated in the protasis is viewed as true, "if as is the case....then” - the conditional clause is best translated as "even if .... then certainly".
αναστας (ανιστημι) aor. part. "[he will not] get up and [give]" - having arisen. Attendant circumstance participle expressing action accompanying the main verb "will not give", so "get up and give", as NIV.
δια το + inf. "because [he is his friend] / [because of] friendship" – an articular infinitive of the verb to-be governed by the preposition "because", forming a causal clause expressing the reason for the action of the verb "will not give."
την αναιδειαν (α) means "boldness or shameless audacity" and is a hapax legomenon. But it is also a disputed translation which is why numerous translations propose: "persistence", "boldness", "shamelessness" in the sense that making such a demand at midnight is any of those. There is a problem with the grammar in that ουτον "his", of "his shame", seems to align with "friend" which refers to the man knocking not the man asleep (although not necessarily). The illustration does not teach that the man in bed is supposed to represent God; this is not an allegory but a sermon illustration. The point is if a friend will comply with a difficult request (albeit belatedly) what can you expect of God?
εγερθεις (εγειρω) aor. pas. part. "he will surely get up" - attendant circumstance participle expressing action accompanying the verb "he will give."
ωσων gen. pro. "as much as [he needs]" - [he has need of] whatever. Genitive of direct object after the verb χρηζει, "has need of."
v9 Sayings on prayer, v9-13: a) The reliability of God - He keeps his promises, v9-10. These two stitched sayings of Jesus serve to apply the parable. If a friend will give you what you ask, even when it is inconvenient to do so, imagine what God will do for you when you ask something of him, so ask ... The general nature of the saying has led to the view that a believer can ask anything of God and it will be given. Sometimes this view is moderated by qualifications such as "asking in faith / believing", even of being in a state of grace, forgiven, living a righteous life, etc. The context, especially v13, indicates that this is not a general promise for "anything", but specifically of a saving right relationship with God through Christ. Ask for his friendship and it is ours for eternity, seek him and we will find him, knock on his door and we will be welcomed into his presence. It is though possible that the saying has a wider application in that the good gift of the Spirit, cf. v13, encompasses all the promised blessings of the kingdom.
καγω υμιν λεγω "so I say to you" - to introduce a conclusion or application.
αιτειτε (αιτεω) pres. imp. "ask" - present imperative urging activity as an ongoing process, so "make it your habit to ask".
δοθησεται (διδωμι) fut. pas. "it will be given" - a theological passive expressing God as the agent.
υμιν dat. pro. "to you" - Dative of indirect object.
υμιν dat. pro. "[will be opened] to you" - Dative of interest, advantage.
v10 α αιτων (αιτεω) pres. part. "[everyone] who asks" - the one asking.
λαμβανει (λαμβανω) pres. "receives" - present tense is iterative, expressing repeated action.
τω κρουοντι (κρουω) dat. pres. part. " the one knocking" - participle serves as a substantive, dative of advantage.
ανοιγησεται (ανοιγω) fut. pas. "will be opened" - variant in the present tense exists and has strong support. Again, may be treated as a theological passive.
v11 τινα "which" - who, what, why an interrogative pronoun.
αιτησει (αιτεω) fut. "if [your son] asks for" - deliberative future. Here the possibility is made unlikely by the negative connective μη. In fact, the και probably reflects the original construction which was possibly a Semitic conditional sentence with the apodosis in the form of a question, "if any father among you is asked by his son for a fish, will he give him a serpent instead of a fish"? Marshall. The syntax of the sentence is difficult, ie. an anacoluthon (Luke has lost his way with the grammar). Note the double accusative construction ("fathers" and "fish") with "asks", "which" and "fathers" in apposition. The articular form of "fathers" and "son" serve to express the possessive.
ιχθυν (υς υος) "a fish" - Is the fish actually an eel?
v13 διδοναι (διδωμι) pres. inf. "[know] how to give".
ποσω μαλλον "how much more" - the key to understanding the passage as a whole. ο εξ ουρανου "[your Father] in heaven" - from heaven. The article may not be original. The sense may be "the Father gives from heaven the
πνευμα αγιον "the Holy Spirit" - as opposed to Matthew's "good gifts" variant, "good gifts" also exists for Luke, but it is more than likely that "Holy Spirit" is original. Luke's propensity to affirm the role of the Spirit is an unlikely motivation for changing an original "good gifts" since the gift of the Spirit, for Luke, waits for Pentecost.
τοις αιτουσιν (αιτεω) pres. part. "those who ask" - participle serves as a substantive.