HTS Theological Studies
On-line version ISSN 2072-8050
Print version ISSN 0259-9422
WELZEN, Huub. Peace and judgement in the gospel according to Luke. Herv. teol. stud. [online]. 2015, vol.71, n.1, pp.01-11. ISSN 2072-8050. http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/HTS.V71I1.2916.
Quite rightly Luke is called an evangelist of peace and non-violence. It is recognised in several studies that peace, nonviolence and love for the enemy are integral parts of the message of the Lucan Jesus. Yet this statement cannot be made without criticism. In the gospel of Luke there are many texts in which violence is present, which is incongruent with the message of peace and non-violence. Sometimes there is even violence that is excessive. In many of these texts violence has to do with vengeance in the judgement. In some recent studies the relation of the peace-message of Jesus and the retribution in the judgement is discussed. In this article we first examine the problem of violence in Luke's gospel with the help of Luke 19:9-27. In the vision of Luke the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 CE is a consequence of the refusal to accept the message of Jesus. To understand this it is necessary to place the fall of Jerusalem in the eschatological timetable of Luke. We see here a certain equivalence between the situation of the contemporaries of Jesus within the gospel and the situation of the intended readers in the last quarter of the first century CE. Moreover we propose to reverse the way the question is put. We do not have to enlighten how it is possible that after the peace-message of Jesus there will be vengeance in the judgement. First there is the announcement of the judgement. After that a delay is announced for the contemporaries of Jesus as well as for the intended readers of Luke's gospel: a year of the Lord's favour. This delay gives room for repentance.