The TL:DR Bible: Luke 7-8


Chapter 7:

Centurion: Hey, could you heal my slave whom I love. You know… really love…

Jesus: Sure, I’ll come by your house and heal him right up.

Centurion: Please, I’m not worth your time. Just issue the order to one of your heavenly minions and I know it will be carried out.

Jesus: This guy gets it. Let it be done.

And the Centurion’s beloved slave was healed.

Jesus visits the town of Nain next and he sees a funeral procession with the only son of a widow being carried out to be buried.

Jesus: It’s going to be okay. Young man, get up.

And the young man sits up and everyone is amazed.

Everyone: We’re amazed!

That’s what I just said.

John the Baptist hears about this stuff from jail and sends word to Jesus…

John: Hey, are you the one or should we look for someone else… because I’m kind of rotting in jail and you’re not establishing a kingdom and kicking out the Romans and Herod the Tetrarch.

Jesus: The blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, and good news is preached to the poor.

John the Baptist was really great. But even the least in the kingdom of God will be greater than him.

You guys are like fickle children. John came as an aesthetic and you said he was demon possessed. I eat and drink and you call me a glutton and a drunkard.  But we will be vindicated.

Simon the Pharisee: Hey, come to my house for dinner tonight.

Jesus: Okay.

So they eat dinner, and a woman slips in and anoints Jesus with perfume and cries on his feet, wiping the tears and dirt away with her hair.

Simon the Pharisee: If this man were a prophet, he would know she’s a sinner and he wouldn’t let her touch him.

Jesus: Simon, there was a man who had two debtors. One owed him $50,000, the other owed him $500. He forgives the debt of both. Which man will love him more?

Simon the Pharisee: The one who was forgiven more.

Jesus: Simon, you didn’t extend to me the common hospitality of the day, but this woman has not ceased to show her affection by giving me homage. Thus her many sins are forgiven her. Woman, your faith has saved you, go in peace.

 

Chapter 8:

Jesus also had lots of women follow him, many of whom supported his ministry with their money.

Hey, look. The Parable of the Sower. Some people won’t believe because the devil stops them from understanding. Some will wash out when persecution comes, yeah, we all know some who bailed, not like us. Some will wash out because they get distracted by daily concerns. But we’re the faithful ones who will bear fruit and get the kingdom.

Jesus disses his mom and bros again. Then leaves on another boat and runs into another storm and Jesus stops the storm again and the disciples are all amazed again and wonder who the heck he is.

Jesus gets met by Legion again. Jesus casts Legion out of the man they’re inside of and lets them go kill some pigs.

God hates figs and pigs.

Jesus leaves town and comes back and he heals a woman with icky womanly cooties that made her unclean and raises Jairus’ daughter from the dead.

The TL:DR Bible: Luke 5-6


Chapter 5:

Jesus gets into Peter’s boat so he can preach to the crowd that had gathered on the shore. Afterwards, he tells Peter to go out into the lake and throw out his nets.

Peter: Yeah, the fish only come out at night, but okay, Rabbi.

They throw their nets and catch so many fish that the nets begin to break, so they signal for help from their partners and haul in enough fish so that the boats almost start to sink.

Peter: I’m a sinner, Rabbi, you shouldn’t have anything to do with me.

Jesus: It’s cool. You’re a disciple now.

So they leave their boats and presumably the fish and follow Jesus along with James and John.

So a bit different that Mark’s account of how Jesus first called the disciples.

Jesus heals a leper again. Jesus heals and forgives a paralyzed man again. The Pharisees complain that Jesus forgives the man’s sins again. Jesus calls Matthew again. Matthew throws a party again. The Pharisees complain that Jesus is eating and drinking with sinners. Again.

Jesus: I’m hanging out with sinners because they need me.

John’s disciples complain that Jesus’ disciples aren’t fasting again. Jesus points out that they don’t have to fast while He is with them.

Jesus gives us a lesson about drinking wine.

 

Chapter 6:

The disciples eat wheat on the Sabbath again. The Pharisees complain again. Jesus tells the story of how David broke the law again. David broke more than one law.

Jesus heals on the Sabbath. The Pharisees are pissy about this again.

Jesus calls the rest of the disciples again. Then Jesus sits down and teaches them some very different Beatitudes from the ones found in Matthew. The Jesus of Luke is much more into social justice and less into spirituality.

Jesus: Blessed are the poor. They will inherit the Kingdom of God. Blessed are the hungry. They will be satisified. Blessed are the sorrowful. They will receive comfort. Blessed are those who are hated by the world for my sake. They will receive a prophet’s reward.

Woe to those who are rich. They have received all they will ever receive. Woe to those who are well-fed. They will be hungry. Woe to those that rejoice now. They will mourn later. Woe to those who are popular. The world thought the false prophets were popular too.

Love your enemies. Do good to those that hate you. Bless those who curse you. Pray for those that mistreat you. Do not return violence for violence. Give to those in need and do not withhold or demand it back. Treat others as you would like to be treated.

“What about if they’re of a different religion or race or sexual orientation or gender identity or political party? Can I hate them then?”

Jesus: If you only treat people nicely when they treat you nicely, you have no reward. Everyone does that. Love, be kind, do good. Be merciful as God is merciful.

You will be judged by the standard you hold others to, so refrain from judging them.

Be more concerned about your own conduct and shortcomings than those of your brother. Men will know you by your deeds whether good or bad.

Why do people call me ‘Lord” and ignore what I tell them to do?

The TL:DR Bible: Luke 3-4


Chapter 3:

Hey, it’s John the Baptist again. This time all grown up.

John: You pack of poisonous snakes, who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?”

People: Uh… you did. That’s why we’re here.

John: Oh. Well, do good works that show your repentance. You can’t rely on tradition or family. Do what is right, or be destroyed.

People: So what should we do?

John: Give your excess to the poor. Tax collectors shouldn’t cheat the people. And soldiers are not to steal or extort money, do their job justly, and be content with their wages.

People: So are you the Messiah?

John: No, no, I’m the hype man. He’s much greater than me. I’m not fit to untie his shoes. He’s going to baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. Also, Herod the tetrarch? Your marriage is illegal.

Herod: Off to jail for you.

John: Wait… I haven’t baptized Jesus yet.

Herod: Fine. I’ll wait.

Jesus: I’m here.

God: That a boy! Woo!

Holy Spirit: I still haven’t gotten one single line in any of these books.

Herod: Okay, Jesus is baptized. Go to Jail. Do not pass Go. Do not collect $200.

John: Everyone knows that game sucks.

Herod: Yes. Yes, it does.

And Luke includes a genealogy for Jesus that is different from the one Matthew included. Maybe people have many opinions on why that is.

 

Chapter 4:

Jesus goes out to the desert for forty days again and fasts. He was hungry.

Devil: Hey, there. You know if you’re hungry and you’re God, you could make rocks into tasty bread.

Jesus: Man shall not live by bread alone.

Devil: Yeah, that’s pretty much how the body works. You eat, you live. You don’t eat, you die.

Jesus: I meant, man also needs the word of God.

Devil: Can you put salt on that? Anyway, how about you worship me and I make you ruler of the world?

Jesus: According to a lot of the Old Testament, I’m already in charge of the world, so no. Also, I was pretty clear in the Ten Commandments. I’m the only one who gets worship.

Devil: Well, what if you prove you’re the Messiah to the Jews by jumping off the Temple steeple and letting angels catch you?

Jesus: That would be putting God to the test.

Devil: Test all things…

Jesus: That’s not in the script. You’re supposed to go away now.

Devil: Sigh… fine. I don’t know why I ever agreed to appear in this book. I mean, seriously, how does this “Luke” or “Matthew” fellow know what happened out here anyway? Plot holes you could drive a truck through…

Jesus: Time to go home, I guess.

He goes to Nazareth and stands up in the synagogue.

Jesus: Hi all, I’m Jesus and I’ll be your Messiah today.

Nazarenes: Yeah, we know you.

Jesus: You guys all suck. Unbelieving Jews. I bet the Gentiles will believe in me!

Nazarenes: Let’s throw him off a cliff and kill him.

Jesus: Uh… I’ll just be going now.

He goes to Capernaum and the people believe him and are impressed by his teaching and his ability to cast out demons. Jesus goes to Peter’s house and heals his mother-in-law again. He hands out more free health care like a socialist and goes on tour.

The TL:DR Bible: Luke 1-2


Chapter 1:

The Gospel of Luke starts off with a brief forward by the author (almost certainly not Luke) saying that while others have written down their Jesus memories as told to them by others, some of whom knew the witnesses, the author will present the best account based on his research.

And by “research” he means he’ll crib from Mark’s gospel too.

Remember John the Baptist? In Mark, he showed up to say “Repent” and baptize Jesus. Matthew says that he realized Jesus was greater than he was and objected to baptizing him. Luke now comes along and adds a backstory for John.

He’s Jesus’ cousin! And he has a miraculous birth too.

John’s dad, Zach, was a priest, and he was old, and so was his wife and they had no kids. But when Zach goes to burn incense in the Temple an angel appears…

Angel: You’re going to have a son. Call him John, he’s going to be the forerunner for the Messiah and Elijah.

Zach: I’m old and so is my wife. How will I know this will happen?

Angel: I’m Gabriel and if you want a sign, you won’t be able to speak until after your son is born because you doubted.

Dude… dick move, Gabe.

So Zach can’t speak, but he can get it on with his wife and knocks her up. And Gabe’s got another job to do. He’s got to go tell a 14 year-old unmarried virgin that God is going to knock her up in a culture where unmarried pregnant girls could get stoned to death.

Gabe: Hail, Mary. Blessed are thou among women…

Mary: I have a feeling I’m going to be hearing that a lot.

Gabe: You’re going to be pregnant with the Messiah.

Mary: I haven’t had sex.

Gabe: God will take care of it. And you can trust my words because your cousin Elizabeth who is old is now pregnant with John the Baptist.

So Mary goes to visit Elizabeth and fetal John jumps around because he’s close to fetal Jesus. Mary sings a praise song. And then John is born. There is some dispute about the name of the baby, but they insist it will be John. Then Zach can speak again and he sings a praise song to God.

And John heads out to the desert to go a bit bonkers.

 

Chapter 2:

“Luke” says a general census of the Roman Empire was ordered by Caesar Augustus when Quirinius was governor of Syria. This is problematic. There is no record of a general census of the entire Empire. The census did not require people to travel to their ancestral homes, and since John and Jesus were conceived during the reign of Herod (1:5) who dies in 4 BC, and Quirinius was not governor of Syria until 6 AD, we’re left with a few inaccuracies right off the bat.

Likewise, in Luke’s account, Joseph and Mary are residents of Nazareth and must travel to Bethlehem, while in Matthew’s account, they only settle in Nazareth after their journey to Egypt and their return.

But Jesus is born. It’s the familiar Christmas story. They can’t find room in any of the inns, so they are settled down in a barn for the night. Mary gives birth to Jesus, they wrap him up in swaddling clothes and set him down to sleep in a bed of hay in a trough.

Angels announce the birth to shepherds.

Angels: Hey, Shepherds! Go to Bethlehem and see the new Messiah who will bring salvation.

So they go find Mary and Joe and worship Jesus and tell them what the angels said.

Eight days later, they cut off the foreskin of the Messiah’s penis and name him Jesus. Thirty-two days after that, Mary is considered to have lost her nasty girl cooties from having a baby, so they head to Jerusalem to offer a sacrifice for Mary’s girl cooties.

There was a man named Simeon who had been told by God that he wouldn’t die until he saw the Messiah, so when they bring Jesus to the Temple, the old man takes the baby and blesses God.

Another senior citizen named Anna also praised God for Jesus and spoke to any who would listen that she had seen the infant Messiah.

Then Joe and Mary head back to Nazareth. No mention of Herod trying to kill Jesus or the wise men or the flight to Egypt.

When Jesus was twelve, they take him to Jerusalem for the Passover. Jesus stays behind for three days and no one notices because they travelled in caravans with relatives. When they can’t find him, they go back to Jerusalem and find him in the Temple hanging out with the rabbis listening and asking questions and generally impressing all of the teachers.

Mary: Hey, son! We’ve been worried sick! You’ve been gone for three days! We searched everywhere for you!

Jesus: Why were you looking for me? Didn’t you know I’d be in my Father’s house? He lets me stay up as late as I want!

Mary: Sigh… Jehovah, we agreed you’d get weekend visitation.

Jehovah: Yeah, I know. But he just showed up. I would have called, but cell phones haven’t been invented yet.

Mary: Like you don’t have a bunch of angels up there just waiting to deliver messages. Come on, Jesus, we’re going home.

Jehovah: You better listen to your mom, Slugger.

Jesus: Fine.

So Jesus goes back to Nazareth and grows up and becomes well-liked.

The TL:DR Bible: Mark 14-16


Chapter 14:

Priests: We have to kill Jesus before he starts a riot and Rome starts killing us. But we can’t do it during the holiday or we might start a riot.

Jesus gets anointed with expensive perfume.

Disciples: Hey! That could have been sold and the money used for the poor.

Jesus: You can help the poor whenever you want to, but I’m leaving and she wanted to make sure I smelled nice. I mean, dudes, we’ve been trekking through the deserts for years now. You don’t have to announce when we’re coming to town anymore, people can smell us from miles away.

Judas: Well, this is just too much for me. I’m off to betray you.

Jesus: Okay. The rest of you go find someone in the city and tell him we’re crashing at his place for the Passover meal.

They eat the Passover. Jesus starts the Communion sacrament. Jesus passive-aggressively lets Judas know that he’s a traitor. Jesus predicts Peter’s denials. And they go off to pray.

Jesus: Dear God, okay, you totally got me in Matthew. So how’s about we call it a day and don’t kill me off in Mark? Let’s just maybe forgive humanity without a bloody, gory death for me.

God: I’m sorry, were you saying something? I was just playing with my new iPhone.

Jesus gets arrested. One of Jesus’ followers invents streaking.

We get Jesus’ trials and Peter’s denials.

 

Chapter 15:

“Mark” wants the nice Roman government to know that Christians do not blame them for the death of Jesus. Since good, tolerant Pilate found no reason to kill someone calling himself the King of the Jews. It was those Jewish people.

Jesus gets mocked and beaten and flogged and nailed to a cross. Again.

Everyone mocks Jesus including the thieves being crucified next to him. Jesus cries out to God asking why God has forsaken him, then he yells again and dies.

The Temple curtain is torn in two, and the centurion crucifying Jesus proclaims him the son of God.

Joseph of Arimathea claims the body and buries Jesus for the second time.

 

Chapter 16:

“Mark’s” resurrection story is the shortest of them all. The Marys come to the tomb on Sunday morning and find it open. A young man in a white robe greets them.

Young man: Hey, guys. Jesus is not here. He has risen. Go and tell the disciples and Peter that he is going to Galilee and you will see him there as He promised.

The women flee from the tomb and say nothing because they were afraid.

And that’s it.

Later authors probably found this ending insufficient and added verses 9 and following, including the bit about snake handling. So don’t pick up a rattlesnake because Jesus didn’t actually say that would be one of your superpowers.

The TL:DR Bible: Mark 11-13


Chapter 11:

Jesus: Hey, dudes, go get a colt that hasn’t been ridden from Jerusalem and if anyone asks you why you’re taking it, say, ‘We’re on a mission from God.’

So they find the colt and Jesus rides it into Jerusalem (sadly, he doesn’t try to ride a donkey and a colt like he did in Matthew) as everyone comes out and proclaims him the Messiah.

Jewish bystander: Finally! The Messiah has come to free us from our Roman oppressors!

Roman solider: Oi. You think we ought to do something about that bloke stirrin’ up the crowd into an anti-Roman mood?

Roman soldier 2: Eh, it’ll be fine. Besides, I’m on me break.

Jesus checks out the Temple and goes back to Bethany. He curses the fig tree because it has no fruit. Unlike in Matthew, it doesn’t wither immediately.

Jesus comes back to the Temple the next day and starts overturning the money changers’ tables and blocking people who wanted to bring stuff to sell into the Temple.

Roman soldier: Eh, there’s that bloke again causing a ruckus. Think we should arrest him?

Roman soldier 2: I just started eating this ice cream cone. I’d have to put it down and by the time we got the paperwork done, it’d be all melty.

Roman soldier: We’re really bad at our jobs.

Roman Soldier 2: Amen.

On the next day, the find the fig tree wilted and dead, and Peter says, “Hey, Jesus, that tree you cursed died!”

Jesus: If you believe, ‘all things for which you pray and ask, believe that you have received them and they will be granted to you.’

Dear Lord, please let me win the Mega Millions jackpot today. Okay, I believe I will win. So I’ll go buy a ticket and get back to you on Monday if this works.

They enter Jerusalem and the priests want to know by what authority he wrecks the Temple and Jesus stumps with a question about John the Baptist.

 

Chapter 12:

Jesus tells the parable of the vineyard again wherein all the other religious leaders are evil bastards and God’s going to kill them, destroy their city and start a new religion.

Pharisee: Should we pay taxes?

Jesus: Yes. But be devoted to God also.

Sadducees: What about the lady who marries seven times and dies? Whose wife is she?

Jesus: There’s no marriage in heaven.

Scribe: What is the greatest commandment?

Jesus: Love God and love your neighbor as yourself.

Scribe: Truly spoken. Love is much better than all of the religious rituals.

Jesus: You’re almost saved. So everyone, how does David call the Messiah his Lord when the Messiah is a descendent of David and the elder is always more honorable than the younger?

Then they have a seat and watch people giving money to the Temple. And Jesus spies a poor widow who throws in two pennies, the last of her money that she had to live on.

Jesus: Hey, she put in more than everyone because she gave all that she had to God.

Disciple: Yeah, but what is she going to eat now?

Jesus: Eh.

 

Chapter 13:

Jesus tells us all about the coming fall of Jerusalem and the return of his kingdom which is implied to be pretty soon. It’s pretty much what was in Matthew, so if you want more details than this, go back and read that section. I’ll wait.

I’d like to think that if “Mark” knew he was responsible for the Left Behind series of books, he would add an apology to this section.

The TL:DR Bible: Mark 7-10


Chapter 7:

Some Pharisees observe that the disciples are eating bread without washing their hands. (The author of Mark steps in to note that those crazy Jews were like all obsessed with washing their hands and cleaning their kitchenware. Crazy, right?)

So they ask Jesus about it and Jesus says, “You guys are hypocrites, man. You say a man doesn’t have to honor his mom and dad by giving them food or money or clothing if he claims he dedicated it to God first. So there.”

Jesus: You’re not made unclean by what goes into your mouth, but by what comes out of it.

Disciples: What does that mean?

Jesus: Sigh… when you eat stuff, your body breaks it down and you poop out the waste. But your bad words and bad ideas and bad actions make you unclean.

So they go visit Tyre next and spend the night. And a woman shows up asking for help for her demon possessed daughter. Jesus doesn’t acknowledge her, so she keeps asking him over and over again.

Jesus: No Gentile dogs. Only Jews get free psychiatric care and exorcisms.

Woman: But even dogs get table scraps.

Jesus: Ah. You got me. Okay, it’s done. You’re daughter’s better.

So he leaves and goes to another town, where he treats a deaf and blind man by… putting his fingers into the man’s ears and spitting on the man’s tongue and telling him to be opened.

And everyone was astonished.

Everyone: We’re astonished!

 

Chapter 8:

So Jesus hands out free food again like a common liberal.

And some Pharisees ask for a sign.

Jesus: I’m not doing any sign. No signs will be given to this generation… except the very clear signs I perform in the gospel of John to show everyone I’m the son of God.

Jesus tells the disciples obtusely that the Pharisees are hypocrites and they shouldn’t be like that. Hahahahaha… yeah… that didn’t take long for the church to mess that up, did it?

Then Jesus heals a blind man by spitting on his eyes, but it only partially heals him, so Jesus lays his hands on the man’s eyes and he can see again.

Jesus: Hey, who does everyone think I am?

Disciples: John the Baptist risen from the dead, Elijah, or another prophet.

Jesus: What about you guys?

Peter: You’re the Messiah!

Jesus: Ah, this guy knows. But don’t tell anyone about it. It’s a secret because I’m going to be arrested and killed by the priests.

Peter: Uh… no. We didn’t sign up for that. We’re not letting that happen.

Jesus: Go away, Satan. Hey, everyone! If you want to be my disciple, you have to deny your own wishes and needs and be ready to die a horrible painful death. But, if you do that, then you’ll be richly rewarded in the afterlife. Those of you who aren’t ready to do that, will get nothing. And you guys better not deny me, because then I’ll be ashamed of you when I come back with the angels.

 

Chapter 9:

Jesus: Some of you standing here. Right here. You guys. Some of you won’t die until you see the Kingdom of Heaven come with power.

We get the Transfiguration again. This time Peter suggests they stay there and throw up a couple of tents for Moses and Elijah, even though Peter had never seen Moses and Elijah, so how would he know they were Moses and Elijah? Ah, they were probably wearing nametags. Every good church special occasion calls for nametags.

And John the Baptist was really Elijah… even though he said he wasn’t and Elijah was just there a second ago with his head fully attached.

We revisit the rest of the disciples who aren’t very good at exorcisms yet, so the boy’s father pleads with Jesus to help him.

Jesus: Crap. You disciples suck. Let’s go see the boy.

Father: IF you can do anything, I would appreciate it.

Jesus: IF? IF? Why anything is possible if you believe.

Father: Okay, okay, I believe. Help my unbelief.

Jesus: Hey, demon. Get out of the boy.

Boy: AHEWROQIUSKLDHFDSRFWEIOOI…. And I’m fine.

Disciples: Why couldn’t we do that?

Jesus: Oh, uh… you didn’t pray first.

Jesus tells them he’s going to die again and be resurrected. No one asks what he meant by that. Then they get into a fight about who is going to be King Jesus’ right hand man once the Kingdom of God arrives.

Jesus: Yeah, it’s not going to work that way. So if you guys want to be great, you have to serve your fellow man.

John: Hey, Jesus, I saw filthy heathen casting out demons in your name, and I put a stop to it because he’s not a part of our Reformed Baptist Convention of 32 AD.

Jesus: Sigh… dude… stop it. Just stop it. If someone’s not against me, they’re for me. Someone doing good works in my name or showing kindness to others, they’re not going to lose their reward.

But if anyone causes one of these kids to stumble, they’re going to pay. It’s better to maim your own body if it’s causing you to sin, than to go to hell.

Yeah… I’m not sure any of us are really THAT committed, Jesus.

 

Chapter 10:

Jesus: Moses gave you divorce because you jerks couldn’t handle monogamy until death. So whoever divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery. And if she gets remarried, she commits adultery too.

There is no “except for sexual immorality” clause in this gospel.

Jesus blesses the children, laying his hands on them.

No, not like that, Father Tim. Definitely not like that.

The rich young ruler comes back seeking eternal life, but leaves after Jesus tells him to sell all of his goods and take care of the poor.

Jesus: It’s easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to get into heaven.

Disciples: What? If the hard-working, morally upright, blessed Job Creators can’t get into heaven’s gated community, what hope is there for us?

Jesus: I’ll talk to the bouncer. He’ll let you in.

Peter: Hey, you know, we left all of our stuff to follow you. What are we going to get?

Jesus: The Papacy.

Peter: Does it pay much?

Jesus: Goodness, yes. And you get to wear nice robes and a funny hat.

Peter: Worth it.

So they head up to Jerusalem. Jesus goes over the dying and coming back plan again and James and John unwittingly invite pain and suffering upon themselves because they wanted to be Jesus’ right and left hand men.

And Jesus heals a blind man.

Bartimaeus: Okay, whoever dressed me in a pink robe with a pastel orange hat has some explaining to do.