The Sermon on the Plain in Luke's Gospel
by Felix Just, S.J., Ph.D.

Contrasting the Sermons in Luke and Matthew:

 . “Sermon on the Plain” (Luke 6:17-49) “Sermon on the Mount” (Matt 5:1—7:29)
Preceding Pericopes Overnight prayer on a mountain;
Jesus chooses 12 apostles (6:12-16)
Summary of Jesus’ preaching (4:23)
[Jesus chooses apostles later: 10:1-4]
Sermon Length 33 verses 111 verses
Intro & Setting Comes down mountain; stands on a level place;
crowds; healings (6:17-19; cf. Mark 3:7-8)
Fame spreads; healings; crowds;
goes up mountain; sits (4:24-25; 5:1-2)
Conclusion “After Jesus had finished all his sayings
in the hearing of the people,
he entered Capernaum.” (7:1)
“Now when Jesus had finished saying these things,
the crowds were astounded at his teaching, /
for he taught them as one having authority,
and not as their scribes. (7:28-29; cf. Mark 1:22)
Following Pericopes Centurion of Capernaum (7:1-10)
[Cleansing Leper already in 5:12-16]
Cleansing a Leper (8:1-4)
Centurion of Capernaum (8:5-13)

Outline of Luke's Sermon on the Plain:

Detailed Contents of Luke’s Sermon on the Plain:

 . LUKE Matthew
Beatitudes: “Blessed are…” 6:20-23 5:3-12
Woes: “Woe to you who…” 6:24-26 [ch. 23]
Love your enemies (do good, bless, pray) 6:27-28 5:43-45
“Turn the other cheek…” 6:29-30 5:38-42
Golden Rule: “Do unto others…” 6:31 7:12
“If you love only those…” 6:32-34 5:46-47
Love your enemies (repeated) 6:35 x
Be merciful… as God is 6:36 5:48
Do not judge/condemn (cf. Mk 4:24) 6:37-38 7:1-2; 12:36-37
Can the blind lead the blind? 6:39 15:14
Disciples aren’t above teachers (cf. Jn 13:16) 6:40 10:24-25a
Parable of specks and planks 6:41-42 7:3-5
Trees with good or bad fruit 6:43-44 7:15-20; 12:33
Good/evil people produce good/evil 6:45 12:34-35
Don’t just call out, “Lord, Lord” 6:46 7:21-23
Parable of two houses 6:47-49 7:24-27
Conclusion/Transition 7:1 7:28-29; 8:1

Four Beatitudes and Four Woes (Luke 6:20-26)

Full Text of Luke's Sermon (NRSV):

Material from Matthew’s “Sermon on the Mount” not found in Luke or found elsewhere in Luke:

Pericope Matthew LUKE Mark
Salt of the Earth 5:13 14:34-35 9:50
Light of the World 5:14-16 8:16 4:21
The Law and the Prophets 5:17-20 16:16-17 --
On Murder and Wrath 5:21-26 12:57-59 --
On Adultery 5:27-30 -- 9:43, 47-48
On Divorce (dup. Matt 19:9) 5:31-32 16:18 10:11-12
On Oaths 5:33-37 -- --
On Almsgiving 6:1-4 -- --
On Prayer 6:5-6 -- --
The Lord's Prayer 6:7-15 11:1-4 [cf. 11:25]
On Fasting 6:16-18 -- --
Treasures on Earth / in Heaven 6:19-21 12:33-34 --
The Eye as Lamp of the Body 6:22-23 11:34-36 --
Not Serving Two Masters 6:24 16:13 --
Not Worrying (Birds / Lilies) 6:25-34 12:22-32 --
Not Profaning the Holy 7:6 -- --
Two Roads & Two Gates 7:13-14 13:23-24 --
Conclusion: Effect of the Sermon 7:28-29 -- 1:21-22

Related Resources:


Electronic New Testament Educational Resources
Electronic New Testament Educational Resources


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