Year of Scripture – Luke

Luke has a unique blessing for it is the only Gospel with a sequel. That’s right, Luke wrote two books. Don’t believe me turn to the first few verse of Luke:

3I too decided, after investigating everything carefully from the very first, to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, 4so that you may know the truth concerning the things about which you have been instructed.
Luke 1:3-4

Then turn to the Book of Acts:

In the first book, Theophilus, I wrote about all that Jesus did and taught from the beginning 2until the day when he was taken up to heaven, after giving instructions through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom he had chosen.
Acts 1:1-2

How about that! We have a sequel, and we don’t have to wait 2 years for the movie to come out and finish the story. We do have a few more weeks to wait however before we are reading Acts. But who is Theophilus? Scholars tend to follow these four thoughts. 1) A Jew from Alexandria. 2) A highly regarded Roman Official. 3) Paul’s lawyer during his trial in Rome. 4) High priest of the temple in Jerusalem from 37 – 41. It could be any one of these individuals, or an honorary title as defined in Greek “Friend in God.”

Besides having a sequel, there are other great things to keep in mind when reading Luke. If we keep in mind the Two Source Hyphothesis, then Luke relied on Mark, his own source material, and Q (a shared source between Matthew and Luke) Of the 1151 verses in Luke, approximately 300 come from Mark, 200 are shared between Luke and Matthew, and the remaining come from his own material. Some of these unique stories include:

  • The prologue and the infancy stories of John the Baptist and Jesus
  • Several Miracles:
    • Miraculous Catch (5:1-11)
    • Widow of Nain (7:11-17)
    • Crippled Woman (13:10-17)
    • Man with Dropsy (14:1-6)
    • Ten Lepers (17:11-19)
  • Several Parables: (including but not limited to)
    • Good Samaritan
    • Friend at Midnight
    • Rich Fool
    • Barren Fig Tree
    • Prodigal Son
    • Unjust steward
    • Rich Man and Lazarus
    • Unjust judge
  • And some unique stories:
    • Martha and Mary (10:38-42)
    • Zacchaeus (19:1-10)
    • Walk to Emmaus (24:13-27)
    • The Ascension (24:50-53)

In that list alone, there is plenty of good stuff to lighten our hearts as we walk with Christ to the Cross. However, unlike Mark, it doesn’t take the cross to reveal Jesus’ true identity. Think back to the angels greeting the Shepherds . . . who is born? The “Savior”! From the beginning, we encounter the one who has come to bring salvation to all people.

That places us just about back on schedule, and reading a few chapters a night we should be pretty close to this:

Reading for the next few days:
Tuesday, October 29: Luke 12 – 13
Wednesday, October 30: Luke 14 – 16
Thursday, October 31: Luke 17 – 18

God’s Blessings,
Pastor Bailey

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