Dedicated to the writings of Saint Luke.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Let the Reader Understand

Mark 13:14
"But when you see the desolating sacrilege set up where it ought not to be (let the reader understand), then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains;

I was going to blog on “the abomination of desolation” when the thought occurred to me that the words “read” and “reader” must occur numerous times in the Bible. The word “read” appears 253 times in the Revised Standard Version. The phrase “have you not read” appears seven times in the synoptic gospels. One example is: And Jesus answered, "Have you not read what David did when he was hungry, he and those who were with him?” This example appears in both Matthew and Luke. There was a crowd of people about Jesus when he responded to the Pharisees. Jesus was asking the Pharisees and also the crowd, have you not read?

Why then is there a question about literacy?

Another question:

The expression “Let the reader understand” occurs only in Matthew 24:15 and Mark 13:14 but not in the Lucan parallel at Luke 21:20-24.

Matthew and Mark certainly understood that many readers would read their book.

Why does the phrase “Let the reader understand” not appear in Luke? Would you include “Let the reader understand” in a document initially addressed to one person, most excellent Theophilus?

copyrighted 2005


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