The Destruction of Jerusalem According to Luke's Gospel: A Historical-Typological Moral
1985 ROME; BIBLICAL INSTITUTE PRESS
Charles Homer Giblin
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"The topic entails another mode of interpreting Luke's Gospel, complementing
other accepted modes (apologetic, pastoral-horatory, doctrinal) and aptly
describing described as "historical-typological." This further mode is
grounded in the preface to Luke's presentation of his gospel as kind of
history. It respects the narrative progression of Luke's Gospel including
some attention to the way in which he conditions his typed audience to
reflect upon and personally to apply the intended lesson. The fate of
Jerusalem is brought about by two major facts. First, the people are
insensitive to the terms for peace. Although they are ostensibly favorable
to Jesus' teaching (as "Impressed unbelievers have been hitherto, and are
warned rather than condemned, they will, as a matter of historical reality,
perish for the more serious sins of others. Second, the rulers of the people
(the Romans not excepted, but not considered as primarily responsible) have
committed injustice and thus bring about the ruin of the people. The fate of
Jerusalem, however, is not ultimately weighed as an event in itself - it is
a sign for others, and is expressly related to time for (judgment of)
All this proves to be relevant,
parabolically, to Luke's readership, a man of affluence and influence,
educated, who is expected to perceive in "a history" what should be done and
what should be avoided, to discern models of good and of evil, with their
consequences for society as he knows it. In effect, Luke's lesson apropos of
his account of Jerusalem's destruction is to be construed as a question
prompted in the typed reader's mind: If this is what happened to Jerusalem
because of the way Jesus and those who represent him, his disciples, were
treated, what will happen to my city/nation/society if he (and his
followers, who stand for him) are treated similarly? What am I, as a
respected man with some influence, expected to do?" (viii)
WHAT OTHERS HAVE SAID
Michael J. Iafrate
"Whether or not these two suggestions are true (perhaps Jesus did, in
fact, carry Roman currency, and perhaps he did not intentionally call for a
coin to divide the two parties), the fact that Jesus knows they have the
coin in their possession there in the temple would have been terribly
embarrassing for both parties. Says Richard Cassidy, “They pretended to be
seriously concerned about the observance of the law - they had asked whether
it is lawful to give tribute to Caesar - and yet they obviously did not take
the law seriously enough to observe its prohibitions against
images.”18Charles Homer Giblin echoes this same suggestion, saying that
Jesus’ opponents’ production of the coin solves the question of where their
own loyalties lie. They have already made their decision, for by their
possession of the Roman coin in the temple, they reveal that they have
already aligned themselves with Caesar." (Render Unto Caesar, Render Unto
God: Making Sense of the Misused Tribute Teaching)
The Fordham Tradition
"The Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople invited Charles Homer
Giblin, S.J., professor of theology, to contribute to the International
Interdisciplinary Seminar on the Apocalypse of St. John. The seminar,
commemorating the 19th centenary of the composition of the Book of
Revelation, was held in Athens and on the Isle of Patmos. Fr. Giblin spoke
on the Divine Spirit in St. John's Apocalypse. Thirty-two scholars from
twelve countries participated in the seminar" (February 1996)
Rev. Charles H. Giblin, professor
Chicago Sun-Times, Jan 24, 2002 by Brenda Warner Rotzoll
The Rev. Charles H. Giblin was born to teach. He started as a schoolboy in
Elmhurst, calling the neighborhood kids in to look at maps and hear about
history. As an adult, he taught theology at Fordham University for 34 years.
In the last years of his life, the Jesuit priest taught by example how not
to give up as he battled pulmonary fibrosis and diabetes. Though tethered to
oxygen machines, he continued to teach classes, went fishing and even went
swimming a couple of times.
Father Giblin traveled home on Amtrak over semester break in December, came
down with pneumonia and flu, and died Saturday at the Elmhurst Care Center.
He was 73.
Charles Homer Giblin was born in Chicago and lived on the North Side until
he was 10, when his family moved to Elmhurst, which was surrounded by
prairie then. He knew by the end of eighth grade that he wanted to be a
Jesuit priest, and that meant four years of Latin in high school. Every day,
he traveled to Chicago and up to the North Side to attend Loyola Academy,
which had the courses he needed if he wanted to enter training as a Jesuit.
In 1945, he entered the Jesuit novitiate at Milford, Ohio. He earned a
bachelor's in Latin and a master's in Greek from Loyola University Chicago,
and teaching degrees in philosophy and theology from the old West Baden
College in Indiana. After being ordained as a priest, he earned a doctorate
in sacred theology from the Pontifical Biblical Institute in Rome.
Latin was just one of the languages in which Father Giblin became
proficient. He also spoke French, Italian, German and English, and could
read Hebrew, Greek and Spanish.
He taught theology at Jesuit schools in Illinois, Michigan and Ohio before
joining the faculty at Fordham in New York City. He published many scholarly
articles and was particularly interested in St. Paul and St. John.
"His passion was the New Testament," said the Rev. John W. O'Malley, a
friend for 50 years. "He tried to impress upon his students that study of
the New Testament was imperfect unless it included taking to heart its
"Most people would have just retired and waited for death" in Father
Giblin's physical condition, said the Rev. Gerald McCool, a retired Fordham
professor. "He knew he had two years to live, and he didn't let that disturb
him. He was determined to maintain both his research and teaching, despite
the physical difficulties."
Every year, Father Giblin traveled home to Elmhurst and went to a northern
Wisconsin lake to go fishing with his sister, Mary Gertrude Giblin. She
recalled that on the last trip the car was jammed with his oxygen tanks and
her three cats, loudly screaming as trucks roared past them on the tollway.
His sister, who is his only survivor, said he told her, "I'm going to
continue to do what I always do as well as I can."
Visitation will be from 5 to 7 p.m. today at Madonna della Strada Chapel on
the Loyola University campus, 6525 N. Sheridan Rd., followed at 7:30 p.m. by
a memorial mass there. Burial will be Friday at All Saints Cemetery in Des
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