The Meaning of Luke 9:60 Explained

Luke 9:60

KJV: Jesus said unto him, Let the dead bury their dead: but go thou and preach the kingdom of God.

YLT: and Jesus said to him, 'Suffer the dead to bury their own dead, and thou, having gone away, publish the reign of God.'

Darby: But Jesus said to him, Suffer the dead to bury their own dead, but do thou go and announce the kingdom of God.

ASV: But he said unto him, Leave the dead to bury their own dead; but go thou and publish abroad the kingdom of God.

What does Luke 9:60 Mean?

Context Summary

Luke 9:51-62 - The Steadfast Face
The Master's steadfast face rebukes us! Alas, we so often flinch and cannot appropriate Isaiah 50:7. But whether we follow afar off or closely, that lithe, alert, eager figure is always in front and taking the upward path.
We need to remember which kingdom we belong to. We have passed out of the sphere of force and war, into the kingdom of the Son of God's love. It is a reversal of the divine plan of evolution to go back to the fire of vengeance. The only fire that we can invoke is that of the Holy Spirit; and it is remarkable that one of these two brothers lived to call down that very fire on those same villages. See Acts 8:14-25.
The Lord was ever acting as a winnowing fan, detecting the wheat and the chaff in human motive. Be prepared to follow your Lord through loneliness, homelessness, the rupture of tender ties, and the plowing of a solitary furrow. But keep your eye fixed on the correlatives supplied on the eternal side of your life! [source]

Chapter Summary: Luke 9

1  Jesus sends his apostles to work miracles, and to preach
7  Herod desires to see Jesus
10  The apostles return
12  Jesus feeds five thousand;
18  inquires what opinion the world had of him; foretells his passion;
23  proposes to all the pattern of his patience
28  The transfiguration
37  He heals the lunatic;
43  again forewarns his disciples of his passion;
46  commends humility;
51  bids them to show mildness toward all, without desire of revenge
57  Many would follow him, but upon conditions

Greek Commentary for Luke 9:60

Leave the dead to bury their own dead [απες τους νεκρους ταπσαι τους εαυτων νεκρους]
This paradox occurs so in John 5:28-2961. The explanation is that the spiritually dead can bury the literally dead. For such a quick change in the use of the same words, see John 5:21-29 (on spiritual resurrection from sin in John 5:21-27, on bodily resurrection from the grave, 1618416472_1) and John 11:25. The harshness of this proverb to the scribe probably is due to the fact that he was manifestly using his aged father as an excuse for not giving Christ active service. [source]
But go thou and publish abroad the kingdom of God [συ δε απελτων διαγγελλε την βασιλειαν του τεου]
The scribe‘s duty is put sharply Christ called him to preach, and he was using pious phrases about his father as a pretext. Many a preacher has had to face a similar delicate problem of duty to father, mother, brothers, sisters and the call to preach. This was a clear case. Jesus will help any man called to preach to see his duty. Certainly Jesus does not advocate renunciation of family duties on the part of preachers. [source]
Their dead [τοὺς ἑαυτῶν νεκρούς]
As Rev., their own dead. [source]
Preach [διάγγελλε]
Publish abroad, as Rev. διά , throughout all regions.sa40 [source]

Reverse Greek Commentary Search for Luke 9:60

Romans 9:17 Might be declared [διαγγελῇ]
Published abroad, thoroughly ( διά ). So Rev. See on Luke 9:60. “Even to the present day, wherever throughout the world Exodus is read, the divine intervention is realized” (Godet). [source]

What do the individual words in Luke 9:60 mean?

He said then to him Leave the dead to bury - their own dead you however having gone forth declare the kingdom - of God
Εἶπεν δὲ αὐτῷ Ἄφες τοὺς νεκροὺς θάψαι τοὺς ἑαυτῶν νεκρούς σὺ δὲ ἀπελθὼν διάγγελλε τὴν βασιλείαν τοῦ Θεοῦ

Εἶπεν  He  said 
Parse: Verb, Aorist Indicative Active, 3rd Person Singular
Root: λέγω  
Sense: to speak, say.
αὐτῷ  to  him 
Parse: Personal / Possessive Pronoun, Dative Masculine 3rd Person Singular
Root: αὐτός  
Sense: himself, herself, themselves, itself.
Ἄφες  Leave 
Parse: Verb, Aorist Imperative Active, 2nd Person Singular
Root: ἀφίημι 
Sense: to send away.
νεκροὺς  dead 
Parse: Adjective, Accusative Masculine Plural
Root: νεκρός  
Sense: properly.
θάψαι  to  bury 
Parse: Verb, Aorist Infinitive Active
Root: θάπτω  
Sense: to bury, inter.
τοὺς  - 
Parse: Article, Accusative Masculine Plural
Sense: this, that, these, etc.
ἑαυτῶν  their  own 
Parse: Reflexive Pronoun, Genitive Masculine 3rd Person Plural
Root: ἑαυτοῦ  
Sense: himself, herself, itself, themselves.
νεκρούς  dead 
Parse: Adjective, Accusative Masculine Plural
Root: νεκρός  
Sense: properly.
δὲ  however 
Parse: Conjunction
Root: δέ  
Sense: but, moreover, and, etc.
ἀπελθὼν  having  gone  forth 
Parse: Verb, Aorist Participle Active, Nominative Masculine Singular
Root: ἀπέρχομαι  
Sense: to go away, depart.
διάγγελλε  declare 
Parse: Verb, Present Imperative Active, 2nd Person Singular
Root: διαγγέλλω  
Sense: to carry a message through, announce everywhere, through places, through assemblies of men etc.
βασιλείαν  kingdom 
Parse: Noun, Accusative Feminine Singular
Root: βασιλεία  
Sense: royal power, kingship, dominion, rule.
τοῦ  - 
Parse: Article, Genitive Masculine Singular
Sense: this, that, these, etc.
Θεοῦ  of  God 
Parse: Noun, Genitive Masculine Singular
Root: θεός  
Sense: a god or goddess, a general name of deities or divinities.