7578 - The Gospel of Luke

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Today, lets look at the history and context of the book of Luke.

This is our second study in the Gospel of Luke. Through the Word of God many in the world have come to a vibrant faith in Jesus Christ. They have seen that Jesus is the only hope for today and for eternity. The four gospels in the Bible are the primary source of the story of Jesus Christ.

There are many testimonies of people who have had no other introduction to God than to have been privileged to read through certain portions of His Word and to come face to face with Jesus. Many invited Him to perform in their own life the miracle of “new life” about which they had read.

In future studies we will engage in a walk through the Gospel of Luke although we will also cross-reference the other gospels. We will not go verse by verse in this study but will draw out the principles, which are conveyed in this book.

Extensive external evidence of Luke’s authorship of both the Gospel of Luke and the book of Acts is very forceful, and few take offense at the claim of Luke’s authorship under the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

Luke had spent several years reading and talking to many people. Evidence points to contacts with many who had been disciples of Jesus. From Paul’s writings we know that Luke spent years in ministry along with the Apostle Paul. Because of his training and experience Dr. Luke was prepared and qualified to document every fact he shares.

Luke probably wrote this gospel record early in the 60’s, while ministering to and with Paul.

Luke was probably the only Gentile author among the writers of the New Testament books; thus, he gives a distinct Gentile presentation of facts. For example he translates some Aramaic words, which implies this was not his established language. Luke was interested in making the gospel record clear. No one is excluded because of rank or nationality.

Since in God’s merciful and gracious plan, Jews and Gentiles were to become one in Christ, we see God’s loving character and omniscient wisdom displayed in choosing a Gentile to author one of the four gospels; and to display in those pages the compassion and love of Christ for all men. Luke writes as a Gentile Christian, with a deep appreciation for God’s mighty work through the Hebrew people, and yet he sounds a warm sympathetic note for those foreign to the covenant and excluded from Jewish citizenship.

Dr. Luke points out that Jesus as the Son of Man had been rejected by Israel so they too needed the Savior. He shows that Israel’s rejection had opened wide the door to the Gentiles so they likewise could become a part of the Kingdom of God through saving faith in Jesus Christ.

The Gospel of Luke has a more universal message of the gospel than any other writers.

The Gospel of Luke is the most comprehensive gospel record. Luke emphasizes relationships, which Jesus had with people. Some scholars point out that almost half of the material in Luke is not found in any other gospel. The focus is on the activities and teachings of Jesus, which lifted people out of their sins and brought them to eternal life and hope. His redemptive mission is the main line in Luke’s gospel.

Luke uses the term Son of Man as a key phrase; thus, he narrates the main events in Christ’s life, which show the humanity of the Messiah, Jesus. But in every story Luke carefully affirms the deity and royalty of Jesus.

He aptly unfolds the humanity of the Divine One. He is bent on giving a record of the life and teaching of Jesus in such a manner that people may know the One who is absolute truth.

Luke’s two books link together and give the account of the life of Jesus from his birth to his ascension, and then presents the history of the founding of the early church through the work of the Spirit who was sent by Jesus from heaven.