Thursday, October 19, 2017

The Gospel of Luke

The Holy Spirit is the heart of the Triune Godhead. His purpose is to empower us to spread the Good News of the Gospel. We share His story of redemption and then He comes in to carry out personal salvation.

Luke was most likely a Gentile believer. As a Doctor and as a disciple of Christ, he used the gifts that he had been given to save others, both physically and spiritually.

Sometimes we need to take a step back to gain perspective. It is one thing for three of Jesus’ twelve disciples to write about the life of Christ; it is quite another for someone who did not know Him to write about Him. Luke never met Jesus, yet chose to follow Him. An obviously educated man he was a physician, Luke learned all that he could about Jesus and shared his findings with us. Thus his Gospel provides a “step back,” a unique perspective on Jesus’ birth, ministry, death, and resurrection. The author must have been a lately converted Christian who knew Paul and sometimes traveled with him. Colossians 4:10–14 seems to indicate that Luke was not “of the circumcision,” that is, not Jewish. If so, Luke would be the only Gentile author of a New Testament book. Tradition says that after accompanying Paul on some of his missionary journeys, Luke settled in Philippi, investing his life in the ministry of the Philippian church.
For Luke, Jesus is the promised Messiah, the Son of God, the Servant through whom God works, and the Lord who is called to sit at God’s right hand exerting His authority and giving the Spirit to those who believe. Though aspects of God’s plan are fulfilled in Jesus’ First Coming, other parts of the plan remain to be fulfilled when Jesus returns.

Luke wrote his Gospel to reassure Theophilus, a Gentile and a new believer, that God was still at work in the Christian community founded by Jesus. Luke presents God’s grace as revealed in Jesus’ ministry on earth. He emphasizes that this grace is available to Gentiles, even though the promises relating to Jesus’ ministry stretch back into Israel’s history.

The first two chapters of Luke emphasize the Old Testament and its promises of a Messiah, while 3:1–4:13 demonstrate that Jesus is the Messiah, who can resist the Evil One. Then, 4:14–9:50 introduce Jesus’ power and teaching. In these chapters, Luke records Jesus’ claims to authority and the numerous miracles that supported them. 

Even with these miracles as evidence, the people rejected Jesus while the disciples’ faith in Him steadily grew.

There was a  growing rift between Jesus and the Jewish leadership. The book ends with Jesus telling the disciples to wait for the coming of the Spirit. By now, they should have realized that everything that had taken place in Jesus’ life was promised in the Law, the Prophets, and the Psalms.

Jesus is the promised Messiah. 

Forgiveness of sin can be obtained only through Him. The disciples were witnesses to this fact; their mission was to share this Good News with all nations, not merely the Jews. Jesus gave them this task, but He also provided them with the power to carry it out. Thus it is clear that Luke’s Gospel centers on God’s plan to provide salvation to the world. It closes anticipating the spread of the gospel that is recorded in its sequel, the Book of Acts.

Luke sensitively describes Jesus as One who reaches out personally and heals those who are mercilessly caged by devastating illnesses. As a person, He is concerned with people. Whereas Matthew likes to refer to Jesus as the Son of David and Mark refers to Him as the Son of God, Luke’s favorite expression is “the Son of Man.” 

Jesus’ humanity and compassion are repeatedly stressed by the author. This, coupled with Luke’s portrayal of Jesus’ sinless perfection, set up his logical conclusion. Because Jesus is the only perfect person born of a woman and because He identifies compassionately with the plight of suffering sinful people, He alone is qualified to carry our sorrows, bear our sin, and offer us the priceless gift of salvation. NKJ Bible.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Daniel 7:13-14

Oh what a glorious day it is… our Savior reigns!

In His mercy He has reserved judgement but the days of grace will have an end. He doesn’t want anyone to perish but all of creation to have a chance of eternal life with Him through the salvation God the Father gives in the Cross.

Son of Man is Semitic for “human being.” Daniel saw One like the “Son of Man,” indicating that He is not a man in the strict sense, but rather the perfect representation of humanity. Jewish and Christian expositors have identified this individual as the Messiah. Jesus Himself used this name to emphasize His humanity as the incarnate Son of God. NKJ Bible.
The references to kingdom and dominion in this verse are what the Jews were anticipating. They sought an end to the world’s kingdoms by the establishment of God’s kingdom, which also meant an end to their suffering. It did not happen in Daniel’s lifetime, but those undergoing the persecution by Antiochus could hope for it in theirs. This kingdom concept is carried into the Gospels. Faithlife Bible.

Daniel 7:13–14 (NKJV)
13 “I was watching in the night visions,
And behold, One like the Son of Man,
Coming with the clouds of heaven!
He came to the Ancient of Days,
And they brought Him near before Him.
14 Then to Him was given dominion and glory and a kingdom,
That all peoples, nations, and languages should serve Him.
His dominion is an everlasting dominion,
Which shall not pass away,
And His kingdom the one
Which shall not be destroyed.

Psalm 2:8 (NKJV)
8 Ask of Me, and I will give You
The nations for Your inheritance,
And the ends of the earth for Your possession.

Psalm 145:13 (NKJV)
13 Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,

And Your dominion endures throughout all generations.

Friday, October 13, 2017

John 8:12-19

The religious right can be spiritually wrong. JESUS is the only answer and the HOLY SPIRIT is our personal guide. Trust Him to get you where you need to go and to accomplish what has been determined for you from the beginning of time. Pray for discernment.

Even the elect can be fooled.

“I Am the Light of the World”. As the sun is the physical light of the world, so Jesus is the spiritual light of the world. As the light of the world, Jesus exposes sin and gives sight. 

Even if the Pharisees could see the Father, they would not receive what Jesus said. Jesus came to reveal the Father, and they had not received Him. NKJ Bible.

The antagonism between Jesus and the Jewish religious leaders is cast as a battle between light and darkness.By referring to “your law” and not “our law,” Jesus appears to distance Himself from Jewish observance of Torah. By extension, the phrasing influences John’s audience to dissociate themselves from Judaism and “the Jews”. After claiming that His testimony is actually exempt from their requirement because of His unique origin, Jesus demonstrates that He is in compliance with their legal procedure anyway. There are two witnesses: Jesus Himself and God the Father. Faithlife Bible.

John 8:12–19 (NKJV)
12 Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”
13 The Pharisees therefore said to Him, “You bear witness of Yourself; Your witness is not true.”
14 Jesus answered and said to them, “Even if I bear witness of Myself, My witness is true, for I know where I came from and where I am going; but you do not know where I come from and where I am going. 15 You judge according to the flesh; I judge no one. 16 And yet if I do judge, My judgment is true; for I am not alone, but I am with the Father who sent Me. 17 It is also written in your law that the testimony of two men is true. 18 I am One who bears witness of Myself, and the Father who sent Me bears witness of Me.”
19 Then they said to Him, “Where is Your Father?”
Jesus answered, “You know neither Me nor My Father. If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also.”

Isaiah 9:2 (NKJV)
2 The people who walked in darkness
Have seen a great light;
Those who dwelt in the land of the shadow of death,
Upon them a light has shined.

Malachi 4:2 (NKJV)
2 But to you who fear My name
The Sun of Righteousness shall arise
With healing in His wings;
And you shall go out

And grow fat like stall-fed calves.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Mark 3:23-27

Our country is in a precarious position. The division that is being promoted in the Oval Office has permeated our country. It is causing worldwide instability. We need to find a way to unite and not to further divide. God help American if we are an example of His mercy and grace. unless our hope of being a christian nation no longer exists.

Jesus confronts the religious leaders with the possibility that, by opposing Him, they might be aligning themselves with evil powers. The defining mark of a disciple of God’s kingdom is allegiance to Jesus and His teaching. Faithlife Bible.

Mark 3:23–27 (NKJV)

23 So He called them to Himself and said to them in parables: “How can Satan cast out Satan? 24 If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. 25 And if a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand. 26 And if Satan has risen up against himself, and is divided, he cannot stand, but has an end. 27 No one can enter a strong man’s house and plunder his goods, unless he first binds the strong man. And then he will plunder his house.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Acts 23:5

We need to respect those that God has placed in positions of power. That includes ALL nations. ALL  positions of authority. That is not to say that we cannot disagree with them if it against Scripture but it does mean that it includes nations other than our own. It includes ALL of our elected officials…they are also instructed to not speak evil of each other. Our president and elected officials would do well to keep that in mind. 

The wrath of God is only tempered by His mercy and grace.

Acts 23:5 (NKJV)
Then Paul said, “I did not know, brethren, that he was the high priest; for it is written, ‘You shall not speak evil of a ruler of your people.’ ”

Exodus 22:28 (NKJV)
28 “You shall not revile God, nor curse a ruler of your people.

Leviticus 5:17 (NKJV)
17 If a person sins, and commits any of these things which are forbidden to be done by the commandments of the Lord, though he does not know it, yet he is guilty and shall bear his iniquity.

2 Peter 2:10 (NKJV)

10 and especially those who walk according to the flesh in the lust of uncleanness and despise authority. They are presumptuous, self-willed. They are not afraid to speak evil of dignitaries,

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

2 Corinthians 12;14

Sometimes we forget that our children honor us, as parents, by being good parents to their children. 

Honoring your parents has lasting rewards.

The wealthy believers in Corinth wanted to become Paul’s patrons—supplying financial support to him. Paul reminds them that their relationship to him is like children to their father—the father provides for them, not the opposite. 

2 Corinthians 12:14

Now for the third time I am ready to come to you. And I will not be burdensome to you; for I do not seek yours, but you. For the children ought not to lay up for the parents, but the parents for the children. And I will very gladly spend and be spent for your souls; though the more abundantly I love you, the less I am loved.

Monday, October 9, 2017

2 Peter 2:10

We are not to speak badly about those who share the Gospel of Jesus Christ or those in authority…it is not our right to judge who God appoints.

Does President Trump despise any authority other than his own? He downgrades any government or elected official who opposes him.

Paul quotes Exodus 22:28
28 “You shall not revile God, nor curse a ruler of your people.

Acts 23:4–5 (NKJV)
And those who stood by said, “Do you revile God’s high priest?”
Then Paul said, “I did not know, brethren, that he was the high priest; for it is written, ‘You shall not speak evil of a ruler of your people.’ ”

2 Peter 2:10 (NKJV)
10 and especially those who walk according to the flesh in the lust of uncleanness and despise authority. They are presumptuous, self-willed. They are not afraid to speak evil of dignitaries,

Jude 4 (NKJV)

For certain men have crept in unnoticed, who long ago were marked out for this condemnation, ungodly men, who turn the grace of our God into lewdness and deny the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ.