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With reference to three different incidents discuss the attitude of Jesus towards outcasts as presented in Luke's Gospel?

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Introduction

Salma Aftab Outcasts With reference to three different incidents discuss the attitude of Jesus towards outcasts as presented in Luke's Gospel? Jewish religion and culture created many distinctions in society and there were many categories of people who were considered as outcasts, such as, lepers, Romans, foreigners, the sick and the poor. People who belonged to any of these categories were considered "unclean" and therefore were avoided. Jesus consistently breaks these conventions and interacts with outcasts. Jesus demonstrates equality and compassion whilst dealing with outcasts. In Luke 16:19-31, the parable of the rich man and Lazarus. The Rich Man gave the beggar nothing, not even the scraps from the table passed over by those who had plenty. This lack of generosity certainly had its consequences in the afterlife. His misuse of his riches has excluded him from eternal reward. He has enjoyed his 'reward' on earth in full, spending it all on himself, with no care for the beggar at his gate. ...read more.

Middle

A priest and a Levite walk by, ignoring him. The only one who stops and helps is a Samaritan. The Jews hated Samaritans at this time, and they wouldn't have liked that teaching. Jesus was saying that our neighbours might be the people we least expect. In that last parable, Jesus would have caused great offence by hinting that a Samaritan, a foreigner, and so an outcast, could reach the kingdom of heaven. Jews had the belief that they were God's chosen people, and so were the only people who would enter heaven. Jewish law told that some groups should be ostracised and so they became outcasts. Jesus' open welcoming of outcasts would have provoked hostile reactions among Jews as He was clearly breaking laws. Jesus himself was made an outcast for associating with other outcasts, which even helped his teachings. Jesus, however, welcomed and helped these people. He openly broke down the barriers that society had placed between themselves and these outcasts. Jesus touched lepers, talked with tax collectors and ate with sinners. ...read more.

Conclusion

On the Sermon on the Mount, he had taken it upon himself to, in the Jew's eyes, to rewrite what had been passed down form generation to generation from Mosses and others. Although not completely changing them, some would have found that the new laws were much harder as they required real commitment to God. They considered that if you gave money to the church, you were a good person. Now they were shown that they must have the spirit and the faith, which was much more important. In many of Jesus' miracles he did them because of the strong faith of those who received. Jews saw the Romans as an occupying army and the fact that they were foreigners and so in the Jew's eyes wouldn't enter heaven. Jews would have believed that these were second-class citizens and anyone who worked for them were disloyal to the Jews. Also many Jews felt that tax collectors charged much more than was required. This was immensely irritating to the Jews and therefore tax collectors were considered unclean spiritually and morally. 1 Jeremias www.netedge.co.uk 2 Hendrikesen 1978 3 Drury. www.netedge.co.uk ...read more.

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