Bible Commentary for Luke 4 thru Luke 16
Luke Chapter 4
Jesus is now led into the wilderness where he will stay for forty days after which Satan will put him to the test. Since he had not eaten anything in these forty days he was very hungry. Satan takes advantage of this and says to him that if he is the son of God, then he could make stones turn into bread. Jesus’ response is to remind Satan of what is written in God’s word. He quotes from Deuteronomy 8:3. He is beginning his mission of fulfilling the Law Covenant. Next Satan shows him all the governments that he controls and tells him that he has the authority to give this rulership to anyone he wants to. Jesus can have world rulership at the very moment that he performs one act of worship to Satan. Again, Jesus uses God’s word to give his answer to Satan by quoting Deuteronomy 6:13.
Satan then stationed Jesus upon the highest point of the temple and then quoted Psalms 91:11, 12 saying to him that if he were really the son of God, then this scripture would be fulfilled upon him. Satan was in reality taking these verses out of their context and Jesus knew this. So he again quoted God’s word in answer to Satan. This time he cited Deuteronomy 6:16. Satan has not succeeded in his efforts to cause Jesus to sin so he withdraws from him until a more opportune time to continue his tests presents itself.
Jesus now goes into Galilee where he begins his ministry and performs his first miracles although Luke does not record them. (Mark 1:14-2:12) He begins with Jesus ministry in his hometown of Nazareth. He went into the synagogue and took the scroll of Isaiah and read from the 61st chapter, verses 1 and 2. He then told the people that this scripture was being fulfilled that day. Although they were amazed at his words, yet they could only see him as the son of a carpenter. He knew that they would expect him to perform the miracles that he had done in Capernaum but he would not because he knew that they did not accept him as a prophet.
He gave them two examples to show why he would not perform many miracles there. He told them that although there were many widows in Israel who were in need of food during a famine, Elijah performed a miracle for a widow in Zarephath of Sidon. (1 Kings 17:8-16) Also he reminded them that Elisha did not heal any in Israelite of leprosy only Naaman the Syrian. (2 Kings 5:1-14) This angered them and they tried to kill him by throwing him off a cliff but Jehovah protected him.
He went from Nazareth to Capernaum and began teaching in the synagogue. The people here were more responsive to his teachings. A man who was possessed by a demon called out in the synagogue saying that he knew who Jesus was. Jesus told him to be quiet and come out of the man and he did. This too caused much amazement because even the demons obeyed him.
When Jesus left the synagogue, he went to the home of Simon and Andrew and found that their mother was ill with a fever. He healed her and she began to wait on them. Then the people began bringing all those who were sick and demon-possessed to Jesus and he healed them all. He would not allow the demons to speak because they knew who he was. He did not want the kind of notoriety they would bring him. Later he sought a place of solitary but the people found him because they wanted him to stay longer with him. He told them that he had to go to other towns to preach the good news to them also.
Luke Chapter 5
Jesus was teaching by the Lake of Gennesaret with a large crowd of people gathered around him when he decided to get into a boat and row a little way from shore where he continued teaching them. (See commentary for Matthew chapter 13 for a further explanation of why this was an effective means of teaching this large crowd.) When he finished teaching them he told Simon to move the boat into deeper water so that he could catch some fish. When he let down his net, there was such a great catch of fish that the net could not contain them. He signaled his partners, James and John, to come and help them. They filled both boats with the fish to the point where they were about to sink. Simon was so astonished at this because he had been fishing all night and had not caught anything. He also knew that he was in the presence of an extraordinary person, so he said the Jesus should not associate with him because he was such a sinful man. But Jesus told him not to be afraid because he would make him a fisher of men. The four of them left their fishing business and began following Jesus full-time.
Jesus how heals a man with leprosy and orders him not to tell anyone but to go to the priest and take the offerings prescribed by the Law for his cleansing. (Leviticus 14:21-32) While he is teaching in a house with many scribes and Pharisees sitting among the people, some men brought a paralytic to Jesus but they could not bring him into the house. So the cut a hole in the roof and let the man down that way. Jesus saw this as an extraordinary show of faith so he said to the man that his sins were forgiven. The teachers of the law said to themselves that he was blaspheming as only God can forgive sin. Jesus said to them that there was no difference in saying ‘your sins are forgiven’ or ‘take up your cot and walk.’ He said this because he wanted them to know that he had the power to forgive sin. He told the man to take his cot and go home. The man got up and went home giving praise to Jehovah as he left.
Jesus then called Levi who was a tax collector to follow him. Levi held a great banquet for Jesus and invited his friends and the disciples to eat with him. The Pharisees wanted to know why they ate with sinners and tax collectors. Jesus answered that the healthy did not need a physician, as do the sick. He was looking for those who were in need of repentance not those who were already righteous.
Jesus was asked why his disciples did not fast. He explained that they had no need to mourn because he was with them. When he is taken away from them then they will fast. Fasting was probably practiced more as a ritual than for special reasons. Jesus was introducing new teachings and the Jewish way of doing things was no longer appropriate. He gave two illustrations to them to show them why his disciples would do things differently. But for the most part, people preferred the old way of doing things.
Luke Chapter 6
Jesus is continually accosted by the Pharisees who find fault with everything that he and his disciples do. They complained that his disciples were breaking the Sabbath because they picked some grain to eat. Or they complained if Jesus healed someone of a disease on the Sabbath. They had made the Sabbath an end in itself rather than a means to an end. The Law simply required that the people do no work on the Sabbath, as this day was to be a day of rest for them from their menial daily tasks. It was to be a day that they could relax and enjoy upbuilding spiritual things. The Pharisees had made this day a burdensome day for all.
According to the 9/1/96 Watchtower , page 12, paragraph 16, we learn this. "Especially notorious is the spiritual travesty that the oral law made of the Sabbath law. God gave Israel a simple command: Do not do any work on the seventh day of the week. (Exodus 20:8-11) However, the oral law went on to define some 39 different types of forbidden work, including tying or loosing a knot, sewing two stitches, writing down two Hebrew letters, and so on. Then each of these types required endless further rules. Which knots were forbidden and which allowed? The oral law answered with arbitrary regulations. Healing came to be seen as a forbidden work. For example, it was forbidden to set a broken limb on the Sabbath. A man with a toothache could use vinegar to season his food, but he must not suck the vinegar through his teeth. That might heal his tooth!"
Because Jesus did not respect their oral law, they took counsel to do away with him. They did not care that the people were being relieved of their sufferings through Jesus’ miracles. They only cared that their regulations were being ignored. Jesus made sure that the people were aware of these burdensome regulations when he asked them all if it was lawful to do good or evil on the Sabbath, to save or to destroy?
By this time it is believed that Jesus had at least 72 disciples who followed him regularly. (Luke 10:1) From among these, he chose his twelve apostles after praying all night to Jehovah. They were Simon later called Peter, Andrew his brother, James and John his brother, Phillip, Bartholomew (Nathanael), Matthew (Levi), Thomas, James son of Alphaeus, Simon the Zealot, Judas son of James (Thaddaeus) and Judas Iscariot. The word ‘apostle,’ according to the NIV footnote for verse 13, means ‘ones sent with a special commission.’ All of these apostles were from Galilee except Judas Iscariot, who was from Judea.
Afterwards, people came to him to hear him teach and to be healed from their sicknesses and demon possession. They came from Judea, Jerusalem, from the coast of Tyre and Sidon and from all around. Later he turned his attention to his disciples and began teaching them. He told them that because they recognized that they were spiritually poor, they would be given the kingdom, their hunger would be satisfied, their weeping would be changed to laughter. They were to be called blessed when men excluded them, insulted and rejected them because they were his followers. They were to rejoice when these things happened to them because they would be rewarded. The prophets were treated in the same manner. Those who were not conscious of their spiritual needs would receive the opposite of spiritual blessings, woes.
They should do good to their enemies, turn the other cheek if someone strikes them, give both of his garments to the person who demanded his cloak. They are to treat others as they would like to be treated. If they helped only those who loved them, how were they acting any differently than anyone else. So they were to love their enemies and lend to them not expecting anything in return and look to Jehovah to reward them. The word Jesus used here is ‘agape’ or love based on principles. They would be showing the same spirit as Jehovah does in that He is merciful towards the wicked as well as the righteous. They were not to judge or condemn others on the basis of personal preferences, but were to be forgiving and were to share their possession with others.
He continued that a blind man couldn’t lead another blind mind without them both falling into a pit. A student can not be above his teacher; he can only be like his teacher. They were not to criticize the faults of others unless they had rid themselves of all of their personal faults. Just as a bad tree cannot produce good fruit and vice versa, neither does an evil man bring out good things from his heart. He speaks as his heart directs.
Jesus compared a person who hears his words and does them to a man who builds his house upon a rock foundation so that nothing could shake it. The person who hears his words and does not do them is likened to a man who builds his house without putting a foundation under it. The first storm that strikes it will cause it to collapse to ruination.
Luke Chapter 7
Jesus enters the city of Capernaum and is met by some of the elders who are speaking on behalf of a Gentile. He was a Roman centurion and was well spoken of by the Jews. His beloved slave was near death and they wanted Jesus to heal him. As Jesus was nearing his house, the centurion sent word that he did not feel worthy enough for Jesus to enter his house. If he would just say the word, then his slave would be healed. Jesus saw this as an extraordinary expression of faith unlike any that he had encountered in Israel. The man’s servant was healed at that moment.
Jesus traveled towards the city of Nain along with a large crowd of people. He met a funeral possession leaving the city, that of the only son of a widow. Jesus felt compassion for her and he brought the boy back to life. There was great elation at that time among those who saw this miracle and they gave praise to Jehovah. They believed that God had sent a great prophet to help them. This news spread throughout the whole countryside and through Judea.
John is in prison and probably hears about some of Jesus’ miracles. So he sends some of his disciples to ask Jesus if he is the one that the scriptures foretold or will another person be sent? He may have been expecting Jesus to completely fulfill all the messianic prophecies including setting up the kingdom. While John’s disciples are watching, Jesus performs many miracles and teaches them many things. He then tells them to go back to John and tell him what they have seen him do. He wanted John to know he was doing just as the scriptures had foretold he would do. (Isaiah 29:18-21; 35:5, 6; 61:1)
After John’s disciples leave, Jesus began speaking to the crowds about John. He said that John was not just a prophet but was the one spoken of in Malachi 3:1, the messenger that Jehovah would send to prepare the way before He came. As great a prophet as John was, he would not enter the kingdom of heaven as he would die before the New Covenant would be inaugurated. All the people, other than the religious leaders, were in agreement with Jesus that Jehovah’s ways were righteous. Jesus compared these religious leaders to fickle children who became annoyed and would hurl insults if others did not want to play their games. They accused John of having a demon because he lived the life of an ascetic and accused Jesus of being a glutton and a drunk because he was not an ascetic. But the end result of both of their lives would prove whether they exhibited wisdom or not.
Jesus was invited to the home of a Pharisee for a meal. While he was reclining at the table, a woman came and stood behind him and wet his feet with her tears drying them with her hair. She then put perfume on his feet and kissed them. The Pharisee was saying to himself that if Jesus were a prophet, he would know what a sinful person this woman was. The Pharisees had a problem with women in general, because they viewed them as particularly impure. They said a benediction in which they praised God for not making them a woman. And this woman was considered a sinner of the highest order and so was unclean. In the eyes of this Pharisee, Jesus was, by allowing her to touch him, making himself unclean.
Jesus knowing his thoughts said to him that there were two men who owed a moneylender, one of them 500 denarii and the other 50 denarii, and neither could repay the debt. If the man forgave both of them their debt, which of the two would love him more? The man reluctantly answered that it would be the one with the biggest debt. Jesus agreed with him and told him that he had not shown him the hospitality this woman had. She had many sins that would all be forgiven because she loved much, but those who are forgiven little will love little. Jesus told her that her sins were forgiven and this caused a stir because they did not believe that a man could forgive sins.
Luke Chapter 8
Jesus continued his tour of Galilee proclaiming the good news and healing people of their diseases. The apostles along with some women were with him. As the crowds grew larger, Jesus began teaching them using illustrations or parables. Parables were effective because Jesus used scenarios that were familiar to the people that would make them easy to remember. But they also had hidden meanings requiring the listener to ask further question to get the deeper meaning. Those who were not interested wouldn’t ask additional questions so would not understand what Jesus was saying. Since there were no direct statements in these parables, these ones could not later use Jesus’ words against him, which they did try to do. The parable about the man who sowed seed has already been discussed in Matthew 13: 2-23 and Mark 4:1-25.
Jesus illustrated the importance making truth known in one of his parables. He said that one does not light a lamp then hides it. The lamp is there that others may see by its light. This light would be used to expose things hidden and those things that are concealed that need to be made known for the benefit of others. Therefore being a good listener is again highlighted because the more a person learns, the more he will have enabling him to be a light-bearer. Those who are not good listeners will lose what little he has.
Luke now repeats several other miracles that are also given in Matthew and Mark’s account. The account of Jesus calming a storm where he rebukes the wind and the waves and quiets them down is also found in Matthew 8:23-27 and Mark 4:36-41. Jesus’ disciples obviously believed that he could do something about their situation so they woke him up. But their reaction to what he did shows that they did not fully comprehend the kind of power Jehovah had given him.
When Jesus traveled to the region of the Gerasenes, he expelled a legion of demons from a man. These demons requested that Jesus not send them to the abyss but would allow them to go into a herd of pigs. Jesus agreed to this and as soon as they went into the herd they went over the embankment into the water and drowned. Not only were the demons aware of who Jesus was but they also knew that he would be the one who would send them into the abyss, although they did not know exactly when this would happen. (Revelation 20:1-3) The footnote for verse 32 in the NIV tells us this about this account: "Pigs were unclean to Jews, and eating them was forbidden (Lev.11:7, 8) But this was the Decapolis, a predominantly Gentile territory."
When Jesus returned to Capernaum, the people welcomed him as they were expecting him to return. A ruler of the synagogue, Jairus, had a twelve-year daughter who was dying and the man pleaded with Jesus to help her. On his way to the man’s home, a woman who had suffered with a flow of blood for twelve years came up behind him and touched his garment and was healed. He asked who had touched him and the woman reluctantly admitted that it was she. She told him what her problem was and that no doctor had been able to help her. The woman had been forced to remain in isolation during this period of time because, according to Leviticus 15:25-30, as long as she had the flow of blood, she was considered unclean. So Jesus wanted others to know what kind of faith it took for her to come out in public just so she would have opportunity to come near to him. She had obviously hoped that what she did would go unnoticed by Jesus.
The daughter of Jairus died before Jesus got to her home and he told those that were mourning for her that she was not dead but was asleep. (John 11:11-14) He could say this because he was about to bring her back to life. They thought he was joking because they knew that she was dead. He had everyone removed from the room other than the parents and three of his disciples. He brought her back to life and told the parents not to tell anyone what he had done. This was the second resurrection that he performed.
Luke Chapter 9
The account of Jesus preparing his twelve apostle for their first missionary tour without him is given here as well as at Matthew 10:9-15 and Mark 6:8-11. Luke mentions something here that the other two writers do not. Herod had begun to hear about the work that Jesus was doing. Herod was perplexed about who this one could be. He believed that John was a prophet but he knew that he was dead. So Luke tells us that he made some effort to see Jesus but was not successful. Jesus would later be brought to him, having been sent by Pilate. (Luke 23:8)
The account of the Jesus’ feeding five thousand men plus women and children is given here as also in Matthew 14:13-21 and Mark 6:32-44. In response to Peter identifying him as the ‘Christ’ of God, Jesus tells them that he will suffer many things, the religious leaders would reject him, and he would be killed and be resurrected on the third day. The account in Matthew 16:21-23 and Mark 8:31-33 tells us that the disciples did not believe that Jesus would have this fate. After telling them what a person who wanted to be a follower of his would have to go through, he mentioned that some of them would see the kingdom of God coming into power.
Eight days later he took three of his disciples with him to a mountain to pray. As he was praying they saw his appearance change and his clothing became as bright as lightning and they saw Moses and Elijah talking to him. Luke does not use the word ‘transfigured’ in his account as does Mathew and Mark. When Peter spoke up and asked if he should erect tents for Moses, Elijah and Jesus, Luke tells us that Peter was not aware of what he was saying. The fact that Moses and Elijah were included in the transfiguration helps us to see that this kingdom was not God’s kingdom in the heavens but was an earthly one, as these two men had nothing to do with the kingdom in heaven. They were both associated with the nation of Israel, God’s earthly kingdom arrangement at this time. That’s why Jesus said that ‘the kingdom will be taken from the Israelites and would be given to a nation producing its fruits.’ (Matthew 21:43) For a more in-depth discussion of this subject, see the article "2 Kingdom Concept" at this link:
http://www.livingwatersforum.com/forum/ ... c.php?t=11
Jesus now begins his journey towards Jerusalem. The NIV Bible Commentary , Volume II, page 247 says this: "However, he did not make one continuous journey from Galilee to Jerusalem. Jesus’ ministry has entered a new phase and has taken on some new characteristics. He followed routes that bring him away from Galilee and nearer to Jerusalem than his former itineraries did. During this period Jesus is no longer committed to the locale of his former ministry but is looking toward Jerusalem and the Cross." Jesus sent someone into a Samaritan village to make preparations for him to spend the night but the people were not receptive because he was on his way to Jerusalem.
The footnote for verse 52 in the NIV Bible says this of the Samaritans: "Samaritans were particularly hostile to Jews who were on their way to observe religious festivals in Jerusalem. It was at least a three-day journey from Galilee to Jerusalem through Samaria, and Samaritans refused overnight shelter for the pilgrims."
Two of his disciples wanted to call down fire from heaven upon these people but Jesus did not allow this. They went on to another village. The two disciples mentioned here were James and John, who were called the ‘sons of thunder’ by Jesus. (Mark 3:17) (See footnote for verse 54)
Many who wanted to become followers of Jesus did not have the ability to keep the mundane things of this life from interfering with their putting kingdom interest first. They have lots of excuses for why they cannot put the kingdom first. Of these Jesus said that they put their hand to the plow but looked back and so were not fit for the kingdom of God. A man who plows a field has to keep his eyes straight ahead or the furrow will not be straight. Turning one’s attention back to the world after getting on the road to life will cause that person to leave the road to the life.
Luke Chapter 10
Jesus now prepares to send out seventy of his disciples by twos to go ahead of him into every city that he is going to visit. They would be sent out as sheep going among wolves. Their instructions were similar to those Jesus gave the twelve when he sent them out. They were to accept the hospitality of the first family who offered it and they were not to go to different houses in search of better lodgings. They were to heal the sick and tell them that the kingdom of God was near. If the village or town did not welcome them they were to go into the street and tell the people that they were going to shake the dust of their town off their feet against them. They would also say that in spite of their reaction, the kingdom of God is near. Jesus told them that Sodom would fare better than these people would in the judgment.
Bethsaida, Korazin and Capernaum were also given warning messages. The people of Tyre and Sidon would have repented had they seen the miracles that the people in these cities saw. So they too would fare better in the judgment that would these Jewish inhabitants. Jesus ends his instruction by telling them that those who listened to them were in effect listening to Jesus and those who rejected them were rejecting Jesus and the one who sent him.
When the disciples returned to Jesus, they were filled with joy because even the demons obeyed them because of Jesus’ name. Jesus then said that Satan had already fallen from heaven. This statement draws out attention to Revelation 12:7-9, where we are told that Satan was thrown out of heaven. Jehovah Witnesses believe that the heavens where the angels reside are spoken of here. But when Jesus spoke to his disciples, he was not talking to them about Satan being thrown out of the literal heavens but was responding to their experiences with the demons. His disciples were being freed from the control of Satan and his demons. Hence, the account in Revelation also has to do with Satan losing his control over modern-day servants of Jehovah through warlike action on the part of Jesus and his angels. These ones are spoken of as being the ‘heavens’ because as in the first century, so in the twentieth century, these ones will be rulers in the kingdom. They represent the heavens that will rule over the earth.
Jesus said to them that more importantly, they should rejoice because their names were inscribed in heaven. Jesus thanked Jehovah that he had hid these truths from the religious leaders of the Jewish system, those who considered themselves to be wise and learned, but had given them to those who were unlearned, children as it were. They were certainly more appreciative of Jehovah’s wisdom in this matter. (Acts 4:13) Jesus because of his pre-human existence in heaven was in a position to know Jehovah more intimately than anyone else. He made this known when he said that no one knows the Father except the son and any that he chose to reveal the Father to. Jesus reminded his disciples that what their eyes were seeing and their ears hearing, the prophets before them had desired to see and hear but were not allowed to do so. (1 Peter 1:10-12)
A teacher of the Law came to test Jesus’ knowledge of the scriptures. He asked him what was required for him to get eternal life. Since he knew the law, Jesus asked him what did the Law say. The man answered that one must love Jehovah with all that he has and then he must love his neighbor. Jesus said that he was correct and he should continue to do this. The man then wanted to know who his neighbor was. He obviously wanted to limit his love of neighbor to a select group of people. So Jesus answered him with a parable.
He told him about a man who had been robbed and beaten and had been left on the road to die. A priest and a Levite came, at separate times, along the road and both refused to help the man. A Samaritan then came along the road and bandaged the man, took him to an inn, paid money for his care and then told the innkeeper that he would reimburse him for any additional expense he incurred in caring for the man. Jesus asked the teacher which of these three men proved to be a neighbor to the injured man? He answered that it was the one that showed mercy. Jesus told him to go and do likewise.
The NIV Bible Commentary , page 250, says this of this Jewish teacher: "Love should not be limited by its object; its extent and quality are in the control of its subject. Furthermore, love is demonstrated in action, in this case in an act of mercy, and it may be costly. There is a striking reversal of roles here. The Jewish ‘expert’ would have thought of the Jewish victim as a good person and the Samaritan as an evil one. To a Jew there was no such person as a ‘good’ Samaritan."
Jesus came to Bethany where he was invited into the home of Martha and Mary her sister. Mary chose to sit before Jesus to listen to him as Martha attended to the preparation of the meal. Martha wanted Mary to help her but Jesus told her that she did not need to spend a lot of time in making a meal as something simple would suffice. Mary was doing what would be most beneficial to her, listening to him.
Luke Chapter 11
After being asked by one of his disciples, Jesus teaches his disciples about "praying." Interesting to note Jesus uses a particular order. They are to pray so as to have Jehovah's Great Name sanctified, to pray for God's Kingdom to come both on the earth and heaven. Next are three petitions to pray for about the daily requirement of bread, for the forgiveness of their sins, and for forgiveness of everyone who sins against them. Lastly, not to lead them into temptation, which would not imply that Jehovah God entices us to do evil but that God allows us to be tested thoroughly.
Then Jesus continues to teach his disciples about prayer using a unique parable only found in Luke. It was common for ones to travel at night to avoid the heat of the day so a visitor arriving during the night in need of food was not unusual. In this first century setting, the visitor was not viewed as just a guest to householder and his family but also was the responsibility to the whole village. Jesus was showing that everyone who asks will receive from the Father in heaven. And because his Father in heaven was perfect, how much more you would receive from Him than from an imperfect father or a sinful man?
Jesus answers hostile accusations. After he drove out a demon from a mute man the crowd was amazed because the man could now speak. But some of the crowd called Jesus the "prince of demons" for helping the mute man. Jesus explained to them that a kingdom divided against it’s self cannot stand and that a divided house will fall. If Satan's kingdom were divided it would not be standing. For more detail on this see Matthew, Chapter 12 and Mark, Chapter 3 commentaries.
The crowds increased and the Pharisees began asking Jesus for a sign from heaven. Asking for a miraculous sign was an act of wickedness since the Jewish people were versed in the Law and should have known who Jesus was without a sign. At which Jesus said, "This is a wicked generation." Jesus then told the crowd that the only sign they will be given is "the sign of Jonah." See the commentary of Matthew, Chapter 12 and 16 for more details on this subject.
After Jesus finished speaking to the crowd, he went into a house because a Pharisee invited him to dinner. The Pharisee became quite surprised when Jesus did not wash before the meal according to the traditions of the Jewish people. Jesus then criticized this Pharisee for only cleaning the outside of the cup and dish and not the inside which meant that on the inside, the man was full of greed and wickedness for neglecting to show justice and the love of God. But, everything could be fine if the Pharisee would just give what was on the inside of the dish to the poor in contrast. Much of this is discussed in greater detail in the commentary of Matthew Chapter 23.
Jesus then tells the experts, the Pharisees of the Mosaic Law that they are in gloom. They took away the "key" to knowledge in understanding. They had been derelict in their duties as they had not used it themselves nor had they let anyone else use this "key" to knowledge and understanding which meant as far as anyone entering the Kingdom of God, no one had the "knowledge" to do so. Jesus left. Thereafter, the Pharisees and the teachers of the law began to angrily oppose him. They chose to defend their own reputations by discrediting Jesus’.
Luke Chapter 12
As a large crowd of thousands gathers to hear Jesus, he speaks out against hypocrisy to his disciples. He warns his disciples against the "leaven" of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy. Jesus tells them all that what is concealed or hidden will be made known. Jesus then goes on by saying, what is said in the dark is heard in daylight and what is whispered behind closed doors will be broadcast from rooftops.
The disciples are warned about worrying about day to day things including how they would live. He tells his friends not to be afraid from those that kill your body since they can do no more afterwards. His disciples are not to worry about their lives. They need not worry about what they will eat, about their physical bodies, or their clothes. He tells them worrying will not add any hours to their lives. His disciples are to think beyond earthbound goals and to use what they have for God's kingdom.
Jesus warns about preparing for his coming. He tells them they are to be dressed and ready for service and they must keep their lamps burning so that they can quickly open the door and be "ready" when Jesus comes for them on his return. He tells them to be ready because the ‘Son of Man’ will come at an hour not to be expected. A master will be good to a "faithful servant" upon his return by putting that slave in charge of all of his possessions.
If however, a servant begins thinking his master is taking too much time in coming back, he will begin beating the servants. Then much eating and drinking will this servant be doing and he will no doubt get drunk. Then the master will come at an unexpected day and hour of surprise. This is the kind of servant the master will assign to a place for unbelievers.
Jesus says he came to start a fire on the earth. He did not come to bring peace but Jesus warns about the coming divisions. These divisions will be in one’s household. As fathers and sons also between mothers and daughters, everyone in the household would be against one another. So logically his coming will result in a great conflict among God’s people. Families will be divided as some will choose to follow him and others will refuse to do so. There can be no middle ground with Jesus. You can either be for or against him.
Luke Chapter 13
Jesus calls the people to repent. Some present brought to Jesus' attention about Pilate and the killings of the Galileans. Jesus told the people that the Galileans who suffered this way were not worse sinners than the rest of the Galileans. He told them repent or they to will perish.
A parable about a man and a fig tree was then told to the people. For three years the man looked for fruit on this tree but he could find any. The man then told its caretaker to cut it down so that it would not keep on using up the soil. The caretaker pleaded for just one more year. If it did not bear any by then, it would be cut down.
The synagogue ruler disagrees with Jesus healing of a crippled woman on the Sabbath. A spirit kept the woman crippled for eighteen years. Seeing her bent over, Jesus called out to her. She came forward. He told her that she was set free and then put his hands on her. The crippled woman became straight and began glorifying God.
The synagogue ruler told the people there are six days for work and heal on those days not the Sabbath. Jesus called him a hypocrite. Jesus asked a question about rather or not anyone would untie an ox or donkey on the Sabbath so that it could have water. The NIV study Bible page 2172 says, "Why was healing considered work? The religious leaders saw healing as part of a doctor's profession, and practicing one's profession on the Sabbath was prohibited. The synagogue ruler could not see beyond the law to Jesus' compassion in healing this crippled woman."
Jesus Grieves over Jerusalem. Some Pharisees-wanting to stop him from going to Jerusalem-told him to leave this place. They said Herod wants you to be killed so go somewhere else. Jesus told them tell the fox I will reach my goal on the third day after I drive out demons and heal people and that no prophet dies outside of Jerusalem.
Luke Chapter 14
A prominent Pharisee invited Jesus to eat in his house on the Sabbath. Inside, was a man suffering from dropsy. The American Heritage Dictionary defines the medical condition of dropsy as being a, "pathological accumulation of diluted lymph in body tissues and cavities." Before healing the man, Jesus asked the Pharisees if it was lawful to heal on the Sabbath but they remained silent. He then took hold of the man and healed him. Jesus then asked them what they would do on the Sabbath day if a son or an ox would fall in a well. Yet, they had nothing to say.
Jesus teaches about seeking honor. Jesus uses a story about a wedding feast. He tells them not to rush for the best places but instead take the lowest place so they will not have to give up there seats when someone more distinguished comes to the feast. He then tells the host to invite poor, crippled, lame and blind people to a feast. Unlike friends, brothers, relatives, and rich people, they cannot repay you. Jesus assured the host he would be blessed for doing so.
While large crowds were traveling with Jesus, he teaches them about the cost of being a Disciple. He tells them they cannot be his disciple if they do not first hate their father, mother, wife, children, brothers, sisters, and even their own lives. Jesus tells the crowd they must be willing to carry there torture stake to be his disciple. Jesus then gives a story of a man building a tower. He begins by saying a person would first take an estimate of the cost so that he would know if he can afford to complete the project. Surely, the man would be ridiculed if the foundation was laid and he could not finish the project. Jesus tells them a disciple only half-built could be abandoned if the cost of commitment is not clearly understood.
Luke Chapter 15
Jesus teaches on repentance. Encouraged for hope, tax collectors and sinners gathered around him. Upset over the situation, the Pharisees and teachers of the law began saying to the people Jesus is now welcoming and eating with sinners. He then begins telling them parables. The Barnes' Notes, Volume IX page 100 says this of their murmuring, "They affected to suppose that if Jesus treated sinners kindly he must be found of their society, and be a man of similar character."
Jesus tells them a story of a lost lamb. He asks them if the owner of just one lost lamp will leave the ninety-nine sheep in wilderness to search for the lost one until it is found. He then says that when it is finally found, the owner will rejoice and take it home and even call out to his friends and neighbors asking them to rejoice with him. Likewise, in heaven there is more rejoicing over the salvation of one sinner than ninety-nine righteous ones.
Jesus continued with more parables with one being about a lost son. A man had two sons. The father gave the younger one a divided share of his property because he asked for it. Wild living in a distant country took the young son's share away from him. Worse, a famine began in that country and so he began to be in need. The young son then found a job working for a citizen of that country as a pig feeder.
After coming to his senses, he went back to admit his sin to his father. His father greeted him with compassion and told his servants to prepare a feast. His father was happy because his dead son came back to him and now is alive again. The older son heard noises of music and such near the house. After finding out what was taking place, the older son burned inside with anger. Then the father went out and pleaded with him and told him he would always be with him and that everything he has is his. The father said he had to celebrate because his dead brother has been found and is alive again.
Luke Chapter 16
Jesus teaches on the duties of discipleship. He first tells a story about a shrewd manager who worked for a rich man. A time came when the rich man accused the manager of being wasteful with his goods and told him to give account his management because he cannot work here any longer. Ashamed and afraid of not being strong enough to dig, the manager thought out a plan to have people welcome him in their houses.
The manager called in his master's debtors. He took each of their bills and lowered them. The rich master commended the manager's dishonesty because he acted shrewdly. Jesus then tells his disciples to use unrighteous wealth to gain friends so that when it is gone you will be welcome into everlasting dwelling. The Expositor's Bible Commentary, volume VIII page 987 says, " The reason the manager was now commended, though he had previously acted dishonestly, may be that he had at last learned how one's world wealth can be wisely given away to do good."
Jesus tells another story about a rich man and a beggar. A rich man adorned in purple and fine linen lived in luxury while a man waited beside his gate. The man was a beggar named Lazarus. He was covered with sores and he only had the desire to be filled by the scraps from the rich man's table. As time passed, both died. Angels took the beggar to Abraham's side and the rich went to Hades. There in agony, he looked up and asked Abraham for mercy but none was given. Abraham explained to the rich man even the ones that want to go to him could not do so because there was a great chasm fixed between them.
Then the rich man hoped to save his 5 living brothers and asked for them to be warned. They have Moses and the Prophets and maybe they would listen to them said Abraham. No, but they would listen to someone from the dead said the rich man. But Abraham said back, if they cannot listen to Moses and the Prophets, neither will they listen to someone from the dead.
***©2006 by YORWW Congregation
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