by Philip Layton
The birth of John the Baptist and Gabriel’s visit to Mary
- Verses 1-4 give the reason for the Gospel having been written. Can you summarise Luke’s motives?
- Were the doubts of Zechariah (v 18) natural? Should he have believed a message from the angel of the Lord, however unlikely?
- Do you believe in the virgin birth? If so, or if not, why?
Share your thoughts below, or tweet about it with the #boundlessbible hashtag. Don't forget this week's Children's Challenge!
Going Deeper – from 'Words of Life'
Luke was a physician, a doctor. So he was well educated and meticulous in giving us his account of Jesus’ life and earthly ministry. Then, in Acts, he gives us the story of the Early Church and Jesus’ continued ministry by his Holy Spirit through the apostles. He wrote both accounts to Theophilus, probably a Roman official whom Luke held in high regard.
He wanted his accounts, in both Luke and Acts, to be accurate – taking time to interview others who had encounters with Jesus. At least 110 persons are named in Acts, as well as various places with geographical detail. Luke proved to be a premier historian, as well as emphasising the need for people to know of Jesus and his saving grace. For it’s in his Gospel that we have the central theme for the whole of Scripture:
'For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost' (Luke 19:10 NIV2011).
Luke stresses hope. Hope especially for the poor; or for the rich man, in eternity, begging for a drop of water from the poor beggar, Lazarus. He reports of the poor widow’s offering which, in divine estimation, exceeded the offerings of all the rich men combined.
Luke stresses joy. Joy for those who experience God’s healing: physically, emotionally, spiritually. Such as the lame man healed, entering the temple – leaping and praising God. And Saul, as Paul, giving glory to God for his transformation – singing praises at midnight from jail.
Luke stresses salvation. Salvation for the prodigal son, the dying thief, the 3,000 or more baptised following Pentecost – salvation for us.
Luke the doctor wanted us to experience hope, joy, salvation. Christ came for all those mentioned in Luke’s two volumes. He came for us also, and those we meet, so that we and they too can be healed – now and for eternity.
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