Luke 4:23

New Testament

20 Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant, and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fixed on him. 21 Then he began to tell them, “Today this scripture has been fulfilled even as you heard it being read.” 22 All were speaking well of him, and were amazed at the gracious words coming out of his mouth. They said, “Isn’t this Joseph’s son?” 23 Jesus said to them, “No doubt you will quote to me the proverb, ‘Physician, heal yourself!’ and say, ‘What we have heard that you did in Capernaum, do here in your hometown too.’” 24 And he added, “I tell you the truth, no prophet is acceptable in his hometown. 25 But in truth I tell you, there were many widows in Israel in Elijah’s days, when the sky was shut up three and a half years and there was a great famine over all the land. 26 Yet Elijah was sent to none of them, but only to a woman who was a widow at Zarephath in Sidon.

Genesis Rabbah 23:4


AND LAMECH SAID UNTO HIS WIVES, etc. (IV, 23 ff). R. Jose b. R. Hanina said: He summoned them to their marital duties. Said they to him: ‘Tomorrow a flood will come are we to bear children for a curse?’ He answered, ‘FOR HAVE I SLAIN A MAN FOR MY WOUNDING—that wounds should come to me on his account! AND A YOUNG MAN CHILD FOR MY BRUISING—that bruises should come upon me! Cain slew, yet judgment was suspended for him for seven generations; for me, who did not slay, surely judgment will wait seventy-seven generations!’ (Rabbi said: This is a reasoning of darkness [i.e. fallacious]: for if so, whence is the Holy One, blessed be He, to exact His bond of debt? R. Jacob b. Idi asked R. Johanan: If a man, why a child, if a child, why a man? He was a man in deeds and a child in years.) Said he [Lamech] to them [his wives]: ‘Come, let us go to Adam [and consult him].’ So they went to him. He said to them: ‘Do you do your duty, while the Holy One, blessed be He, will do His.’ ‘Physician, physician, heal thine own limp!’ retorted the other. ‘Have you kept apart from Eve a hundred and thirty years for any reason but that you might not beget children by her!’® On hearing this, he [Adam] resumed his duty of begetting children, -and forthwith, And Adam knew his wife again (Gen. IV, 25).

 Notes and References

"... because Jesus began his ministry at about the age of thirty, it is also at least possible that he had acquired a higher level of education, given the span of time that would allow him to gain further education prior to his public ministry. Indeed, some Jewish boys attended the ephebeia (see above), if they had the financial means to do so. His use of parables may also suggest that he had learning beyond that of the primary, since only learned Jewish teachers would have known how to use this type of genre. Additionally, Jesus’ statement, “Surely you will quote this proverb to me: ‘Physician heal yourself’ (Πάντως ἐρεῖτέ μοι τὴν παραβολὴν ταύτην· Ἰατρέ, θεράπευσον σεαυτόν)” (Luke 4:23), may also suggest that he had some acquaintance with both Jewish and Greek literature. (This proverb is found in Greek literature, “A physician for others, but himself teeming with sores”, Euripides [480–406 BCE], Incertarum Fabularum Fragmenta 1086, as well as in Jewish literature, “Physician, physician heal thine own limp!”, Genesis Rabbah 23:4) The only thing that would mitigate us from considering this possibility that Jesus did attend an education beyond the primary is if he did not have the financial means to do so ..."

Ong, Hughson T. The Multilingual Jesus and the Sociolinguistic World of the New Testament (p. 254) Brill, 2016

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