1 The Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron: 2 “This is the ordinance of the law that the Lord has commanded: ‘Instruct the Israelites to bring you a red heifer without blemish, which has no defect and has never carried a yoke. 3 You must give it to Eleazar the priest so that he can take it outside the camp, and it must be slaughtered before him. 4 Eleazar the priest is to take some of its blood with his finger, and sprinkle some of the blood seven times in the direction of the front of the tent of meeting. 5 Then the heifer must be burned in his sight—its skin, its flesh, its blood, and its offal is to be burned.
29 Now when he approached Bethphage and Bethany, at the place called the Mount of Olives, he sent two of the disciples, 30 telling them, “Go to the village ahead of you. When you enter it, you will find a colt tied there that has never been ridden. Untie it and bring it here. 31 If anyone asks you, ‘Why are you untying it?’ just say, ‘The Lord needs it.’” 32 So those who were sent ahead found it exactly as he had told them. 33 As they were untying the colt, its owners asked them, “Why are you untying that colt?” 34 They replied, “The Lord needs it.” 35 Then they brought it to Jesus, threw their cloaks on the colt, and had Jesus get on it.
Notes and References
"... on which no one has yet ridden. I.e. fit for "the king" who is to enter. This detail is taken over by Luke word for word from Mark 11:2. There it was possibly an allusion to Zechariah 9:9, a 'new foal.' That nuance, however, should not be read into the Lucan passage, which otherwise has no allusion to Zechariah. Moreover, one should not wonder about Jesus riding an animal not yet broken in, and going downhill; to do so is to miss the point of the story. The description of the colt used here may be echoing the description of animals in the Old Testament that have never borne a yoke. See Numbers 19:2; Deuteronomy 21:3; 1 Samuel 6:7. A similar motif will recur in 23:53 ..."
Fitzmyer, Joseph A. The Gospel According to Luke: Introduction, Translation, and Notes (p. 1249) Doubleday, 1981
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