1. The Jews of Palestine were weather-wise. When they saw the clouds forming in the west, over Mediterranean Sea, they knew rain was on the way. When the south wind blew from the desert they knew the sirocco-like wind was coming. But those who were so wise to read the signs of the sky could not, or would not, read the signs of the times. If they had they would have seen that the kingdom of God was on the way.
2. Jesus uses a vivid illustration concerning the lawsuit. From what He says, the defendant has a bad case which will inevitably go against him. All of us have a bad case in the presence of God and if we are wise we will make our peace with God while there is still time.
3. Since we come across the word penny, it is good to know the information about Jewish coinage in the time of Jesus.
• The lepton, was the smallest coin, and had the least value. It was the widow’s mite (Mk 12: 42)
• The quadrans was worth two lepta (Mt 5: 26)
• The assarion, was worth about four times the value of quadrans (Mt 10:29)
• The denarius was a day’s pay for a working man (Mt 20:2), and was the coin that Good Samaritan left with the innkeeper (Lk 10: 25)
• The drachma was a silver coin worth slightly more than a denarius. It was the coin which the woman lost and searched for (Lk 15:8)
• The didrachma or half-shekel – was worth about two day’s pay. It was the amount of the Temple tax which everyone had to pay. It was for thirty didrachmae about two months wages, that Judas betrayed Jesus.
• The shekel was equal to about four days’ wages, and was the coin found in the fish’s mouth (Mt 17: 27).
• The mina is the coin mentioned in the parable of the pounds (Lk 19: 11-27). It was equal to 100 drachmae; and was therefore the equivalent of about three month’s wages.
• The talent was not so much a coin but a weight of silver. It would take about fifteen years to earn such a sum (Mt 18:24)
4. They knew how to test the weather signs means that they did test them; the question that they knew not to test the signs of the times means that they would just as easily have done so but did not do so. Every means and every aid were given them that they were just as plain as the cloud in the west and the wind from the south. There were the baptism and preaching of John, there was the wonderful person of Jesus, his preaching and his miracles. Yet they knew not how to test these. They knew well enough but would not act on their knowledge.
5. The people knew how these signs were to be interpreted; they only pretended that they did not understand them. They did not make a decision. They refused to be converted; they were determined to continue their old way of life.
The Preacher’s Outline and Sermon Bible
William Barclay New Daily Study Bible
John L. Mc Kenzie - The Gospel According to St .Luke
Lenski – Interpretation of St. Luke’s Gospel