Looking Back: What Do the World’s ‘Bible Experts’ Say?

expert

“And Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.”
–Luke 9:62

Perhaps no verse in the Bible but Luke 9:62 better demonstrates the corruption that a hard-working ‘Bible expert’ can employ.

Perhaps no verse in the Bible demonstrates the ‘homogenization process” of the so-called ‘Bible experts’ better than Luke 9:62.

The process of homogenization among the ‘Bible experts’ works a little something like the following.

1- One ‘expert’ comments on a verse from God’s Word. 2- Other ‘experts’ LATER provide comments which mostly ECHO what the first ‘expert’ said. 3- ONLY those who mostly agree with that first ‘expert’ are considered ‘experts.’ 4- Any who DISAGREE are considered RENEGADES and do not get cited. 5- Later ‘experts’ MAY be moved by force of public opinion to include additional details which will satisfy the public, but probably will NOT clarify God’s Word.

In this way, does the world refine–and almost UNIVERSALLY AGREE–what is ‘acceptable’ thinking about God’s Word.

In this way, does written Bible commentary get homogenized for future generations.

Luke 9:62 addresses what Jesus said about ‘looking back.’

The ‘experts’ commentary ALL agree on what Jesus said–to a point.

First up is one commentary which offers three other ‘experts.’

As no man is fit to manage a plough who is not intent on his work, so no man must think of taking upon himself the profession of the Gospel, who allows worldly considerations to be uppermost in his mind.
Bishop Mann

The ancient ploughs, being much more rude and simple than those in modern use, required peculiar attention in the person who had the guidance of them, in order to make them penetrate the ground and to direct them straight.
Fragments to Calmet

The first member of this sentence is a proverbial expression for the character of a person, who when he is engaged in a work of importance, allows his attention to be distracted by things foreign to his business.
Doctor Campbell
British Family Bible notes

Next, is an offering from Family Bible Notes.

Having put his hand to the plough, and looking back; the husbandman who puts his hands to the plough must keep them, and his eyes too, fixed upon it. If he looks back, as for example to converse with those behind him, his work will be poorly done. The Syrian plough, being light, required the weight of the ploughman’s body on it to keep it in the furrow. If he looked off, it would start aside. So he who would be a worthy servant of Christ must give him his whole heart and his whole time.

Fit for the kingdom of God; fit for the ministry of Christ’s gospel in his kingdom. Such was plainly the original application of these words. But they apply with equal force to every kind of service which Christ requires. No man who is not ready to leave all when Christ calls, is prepared to serve him on earth, or enjoy him in heaven.

The third ‘expert’ stays the course of the first two.

No man, &c.–As ploughing requires an eye intent on the furrow to be made, and is marred the instant one turns about, so will they come short of salvation who prosecute the work of God with a distracted attention, a divided heart. Though the reference seems chiefly to ministers, the application is general. The expression “looking back” has a manifest reference to “Lot’s wife” (Ge 19:26; and see on JFB for Lu 17:32). It is not actual return to the world, but a reluctance to break with it. (Also see on JFB for Mt 8:21.)
Jamieson, Fausseett and Brown

And finally, another ‘expert’ comments on Luke 9:62. This last expert, Albert Barnes, adds a few points to his commentary and may come closes to hitting the nail of the meaning on its head.

CLOSE–but no cigar.

No man, having put his hand, &c. To put one’s hand to a plough is a proverbial expression to signify undertaking any business. In order that a ploughman may accomplish his work, it is necessary to look onward–to be intent on his employment–not to be looking back with regret that he undertook it. So in religion. He that enters on it must do it with his whole heart. He that comes still loving the world–still looking with regret on its pleasures, its wealth, and its honours–that has not wholly forsaken them as his portion, cannot be a Christian, and is not fit for the kingdom of God. How searching is this test to those who profess to be Christians! And how solemn the duty of all men to renounce all earthly objects, and to be not only almost, but altogether, followers of the Son of God! It is perilous to tamper with the world –to look at its pleasures or to seek its society. He that would enter heaven must come with a heart full of love to God; giving all into his hands, and prepared always to give up all his property, his health, his friends, his body, his soul to God, when he demands them, or he cannot be a Christian. Religion is everything or nothing. He that is not willing to sacrifice everything for the cause of God, is really willing to sacrifice nothing.
Albert Barnes

NOTHING is said expressly about whether Jesus was addressing BELIEVERS or NON-BELIEVERS or PRETENDERS.

MUCH was written about the practice of plowing a field.  MUCH.

NOT MUCH was written about WHY Jesus may have spoken the words He did.

NONE of the so-called ‘Bible experts’ tackled the topic of ‘looking back with longing for a sin-filled life.’

HOWEVER, the ‘experts’ agree: be careful when plowing a field!

DOES the reader have any thoughts on this entire subject?

It is not YET too late: there is still a LITTLE time to change direction (repent), place your faith (hope) for the future entirely on Jesus Christ and enter the kingdom of heaven.

DOES the reader believe he is saved?

Make Your Calling and Election Sure: End Times Survival

DOES the reader believe he is NOT saved?

Time is Running Out: Today is the Day of Salvation

THE GOSPEL OF JESUS CHRIST

“Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:

And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve: After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep. After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles. And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time. ”
1 Corinthians 15:1-8

“For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.”
-–Romans 1:16

A Reminder: The Gospel is Simple

MORE: Eternal Salvation Through Jesus Christ: Salvation Messages from End Times Prophecy Report

[Portions of this piece appeared originally in End Times Prophecy Headlines:  March 14, 2022.]

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by Jeremiah Jameson
–with Mondo Frazier

image: Photo by Austin Distel on Unsplash.com

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Author: Jeremiah J Jameson

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