Children of a Compassionate God: A Theological Exegesis of Luke 6:20-49
Luke 1-6:16 forms the literary context for the Sermon on the Plain. This context grounds Jesus' teaching authority as the Son of God. The beatitudes and woes (6:20-26) establish a revolutionary vision of the authentic human life. The love commandment is grounded in two general ethical principles - the Golden Rule (6:31) as a maxim of general altruism and the imitatio Dei (6:36) making human conduct respond to the deepest human desires intimated in the Rule. Consequently, Christian disciples are to avoid hostile judgment, as their master did; one can judge truly only by examining the fruits one produces. These commands, which carry human authenticity beyond its limits, are the only way to avoid total destruction.
The Theology of the Lukan Sermon
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