New Defender's Study Bible Notes
4:4 every word of God. See also Matthew 4:4. “It is written” is in the perfect tense, carrying the force of: “It stands written once and for all.” Note that it is not just the “thoughts” of Scripture that are vital, but every word!
4:5 taking him up. The order of the second and third temptations, as given in Luke, is opposite to that recorded in Matthew. A comparison of the sequential conjunctions (“then” in Matthew, “and” in Luke) indicates that Matthew’s sequence is chronological, Luke’s is topical. This, in fact, is fairly evident throughout both gospels, and should be kept in mind in comparing their accounts of various events.
4:5 moment of time. There are three “moments” mentioned in the New Testament, each using a different Greek word, and each used only one time in the Bible. In this verse, the Greek word for “moment” is stigma, meaning “a point” in time. But ruling the world for just an instant in time (compared to eternity) was a poor bargain, and Jesus rejected it. In I Corinthians 15:51-52, we shall all be changed “in a moment.” Here the Greek word is atomos, meaning “an indivisible particle” of time. At present we are experiencing “light affliction, which is but for a moment” (II Corinthians 4:17). The word here is parautika, meaning the “present moment.”
4:16 as his custom was. It is noted, significantly, that Jesus regularly attended the weekly services in the synagogue. As a boy, His knowledge of the Scriptures had impressed the Jerusalem rabbis, and it seems probable that He was regularly called on to read and speak in the Nazareth synagogue, up until He began His public ministry. When He returned for a visit, it was natural that He would be called on again. This time, however, His message was different, and it produced a strong reaction.
4:18 upon me. The Holy Spirit had come upon the Lord Jesus in the visible form of a dove at His baptism, and both the Father speaking from heaven and John the Baptist had identified Him as the Son of God (Luke 3:22; John 1:18, 34). This began His public ministry, so He now made statements and claims before His acquaintances at Nazareth which went far beyond anything they had heard from Him before, even identifying Himself as the fulfillment of Messianic prophecy, quoting Isaiah 61:1. They were first impressed, then shocked, and finally angered.
4:19 preach the acceptable year. Jesus stopped His quoting from Isaiah 61:2 just before “the day of vengeance of our God,” obviously realizing that this portion would not be fulfilled “this day” (Luke 4:21), but at His second coming.
4:24 his own country. See note on Matthew 13:54-58. This principle seems almost always to hold true, even for Jesus! “He marveled because of their unbelief,” and “did not many mighty works there” at Nazareth (Mark 6:6; Matthew 13:58). It is noteworthy that this principle is recorded in all four gospels (Matthew 13:57; Mark 6:4; Luke 4:24; John 4:44).
4:26 was a widow. Christ’s reference here is to Elijah’s miraculous ministry to the widow of Zarephath and her son (I Kings 17:8-24), a woman who lived in Sidon rather than Israel, and who not only was hospitable to him, but acknowledged that he was a prophet of the true God.
4:27 Naaman the Syrian. See the account in II Kings 5:1-16. This Syrian officer, like the widow of Zarephath with Elijah, recognized that Elisha was a prophet of the one true God.
4:30 passing through the midst. His fellow townsmen were so infuriated by what they judged to be blasphemous statements that, even though they were well aware of His moral perfections and spiritual godliness, they attempted to slay Him. By some unexplained method, however, whether by miraculous power or merely by force of character, He passed through their midst unharmed.
4:32 with power. God’s words, whether spoken by Jesus or written in Scripture, are indeed full of power, and a number of physical analogies are used to characterize its power. It is like a sword (Hebrews 4:12), a hammer (Jeremiah 23:29), a fire (Jeremiah 20:9), and light (Psalm 119:105), in addition to our daily food (Luke 4:4; Jeremiah 15:16; Hebrews 5:12).
4:41 not to speak. See note on Mark 3:12.