edited by Gaylon West
Luke was the "beloved physician" of Colossians 4:14. He is said to have used more medical terms than Hippocrates, the father of medicine. The choice of Luke by the Holy Spirit to write the third Gospel reveals that there are no accidental writers of Scripture. There was a supernatural selection of Luke. There were "not many wise" called, but Luke belongs to that category. He and Paul were evidently on a very high intellectual level as well as a spiritual level. This explains partially why they traveled together and obviously became fast friends in the Lord.
"Dr." Luke would rank as a scientist of his day. He wrote the best Greek of any of the New Testament writers including Paul. He was an accurate historian. According to Sir William Ramsay, Luke was a careful historian of remarkable ability.
A great deal of tradition surrounds the life of Luke which is needless for us to examine in a brief analysis. He writes his Gospel from Mary's viewpoint. There is every reason to believe that he was a Gentile (non-Jew). Most scholars concur in this position. Paul, in Colossians, distinguishes between those "who are of the circumcision" (Col. 4:11) and the others who are obviously Gentiles. Luke is in the list of Gentiles (Col. 4:14). (Sir William Ramsay and J.M. Stiner affirm without reservation that Luke was a non-Jew.)
References to the man Luke: Col. 4:14; 2 Tim. 4:11; Philemon 24; also the "we" section of Acts-Acts 16:10-17; 20:5-21:18; 27:1-28:16 would mean that Luke was traveling with Paul.
THEME: "Behold the Man" : the Son of man (in addition to being the Son of God).
"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" (Daniel ).
Jesus is the second man, but the last Adam (1 Cor. ,47). He is making men like Himself (1 John 3:2), therefore Jesus is the second man. He is the last Adam, as there will not be another head of the human family. Jesus was "made like unto His brethren" (Heb. ) that His brethren might be made like unto Him.
THE SCIENTIFIC APPROACH:
Matthew emphasizes that Jesus was born the Messiah. Mark emphasizes that Jesus was the Servant of Jehovah. Luke stresses the fact that Jesus was the perfect Man. John presents the fact that God became a Man, but that is not the scientific approach.
Luke states that he examined Jesus of Nazareth, and his findings are that Jesus is God. He came to the same conclusion as John, but his procedure and technique were different.
1. Although the Gospel of Luke is one of the synoptic Gospels, it contains many features omitted
by Matthew and Mark.
2. Luke gives us the songs of the angels at Jesus' birth.
3. Luke has the longest account of the virgin birth of Jesus of any of the Gospels. In the first two
chapters he gives us an unabashed record of obstetrics. A clear and candid statement of the virgin
birth is given by Luke. All the way from Luke to Dr. Howard Kelly, gynecologist of Johns Hopkins,
there is a mighty affirmation of the virgin birth, which makes the statements of pseudo-theologians
seem rather puerile when they unblushingly state that the virgin birth is a biological impossibility.
4. Luke gives us 20 miracles and 6 of them are recorded in no other gospel.
5. He likewise gtive us 23 parables and 18 of them are found nowhere else. The parables of the
Prodigal Son and the Good Samaritan are peculiar to this third gospel.
6. He likewise gives us the very human account of the wealk to Emmaus of our resurrected Lord.
This proves that Jesus was still in human body form after His resurrection. Luke demonstrates that
the resurrection was not of the spirit but of the body. Jesus was "sown a natural body... raised a
spiritual body." Never to die again.
7. A definite human sympathy pervades this Gospel, which reveals the truly human nature of Jesus,
as well as the big-hearted sympathy of this physician of the first century who knew first hand a great
deal about the suffering of humanity.
8. Luke uses more medical terms than Hippocreates, the father of medicine.
Luke says his record is in order; possibly chronological in the events in Christ's public ministry.
Historically Luke begins his Gospel before the other synoptic Gospels.
Heaven had been silent for over 400 years when the angel Gabriel
Appeared at the golden altar of prayer to an nounce the birth of John the Baptist. Luke gives us the background as well as the births of John and Jesus.
Both Mary and Joseph possess certain noble human character traits. Joseph was an unselfish, humble and dependable man of high ideals. Mary possessed the same character traits. She was obedient and uncomplaining, with a definite knowledge of the Old Testament. Long before medical science gave any attention to heredity, Luke placed a great emphasis upon it. Joseph and Mary were not the accidental choice of God.
Luke makes it abundantly clear that Jesus is virgin born. No other conclusion can be drawn from the definite, direct and dogmatic statements of the angel Gabriel to Mary. Until man knows more about the origin of life, he is in no position, scientifically, to refute dogmatically the statement of Luke. A true scientific approach is humble inquiry and patience.
Three songs are in this chapter:
(2) The magnificat of Mary-vvs. 46-55,
(3) Prophecy of Zacharias-vvs. 67-79.
Chapter 2 -This is the careful historical record of the birth of Jesus tied into the record of the Roman government. The simple record of the visit of the shepherds is tied into the sublime record of the visit of the heavenly host.
Jesus was brought to the temple when 8 days old to be circumcised according to Mosaic Law:
But, when the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, to redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons [Gal. 4:4,5].
As a result of this visit to
The one isolated incident from the boyhood of Jesus is recorded by Luke to let us know that Jesus had a normal human childhood (see v.52).
(1) Jesus increased in wisdom (mental),
(2) in stature (physical),
(3) in favor with God and man (spiritual).
Chapter 3 -Luke, with a true historian's approach, dates the ministry of John the Baptist with secular history (see v. 1,2).
Luke places the emphasis upon John's message of repentance as the condition for the coming of the Messiah. From the Mosaic system of washing in water, which was a common custom of immersion in that day, John baptized those who came to him as merely a preparation (a moral
reformation) for the coming of Christ. Christ would baptize by the Holy Spirit- which it turns out was for the selected twleve Jews, called apostles.
The genealogy in this chapter is Mary's, which reveals two facts.
First, it goes back to Adam the father of the human family. Jesus was truly human. Matthew, in presenting Jesus as king, traces the genealogy back only as far as Abraham. Luke, in presenting Jesus as man, goes back to Adam. In the second place, Mary was descended from David through another than Solomon, David's son Nathan (v. 31 compare 1 Chronicles 3:5).
Chapter 4 Jesus is tempted as a man by Satan. They were human
temptations that come to all of us. They cover the entire spectrum of human temptations, and are threefold (see 1 John -17).
1 John 2
15 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
16 For all that is in the world--the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life--is not of the Father but is of the world.
17 And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.
(1) Temptation: Lust of the flesh. Make stones into bread to satisfy desires of the flesh. There is nothing wrong with bread. Bread is the staff of life. The body has need of bread and Jesus was starving. What is wrong? To use His great powers to minister to Himself would be selfish. To overcome this temptation as well as the others, He appealed to Scripture. "Man shall not live by bread alone." This is contrary to the t h ink i n g of this crass materialistic age that lives only to satisfy the whims of the body. Modern man in our secular society says, "Eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow we die." And as far as man is concerned, that ends it all. Selfishness is the curse of a creedless secular society. Our Lord, in meeting this temptation, refuted the popular Epicurean philosophy of the world.
(2) Temptation: Lust of the eyes.
The answer of Jesus is again, "It is written..." "Thou shalt worship the Lord, thy God, and him only shalt thou serve" (Deut. ). Two words that have to do with serving God: "worship" ("a kiss humbly" toward God, specific act of worship, -must be according to Truth-- such as praying, etc., John 4:24); "serve" (worship by behavior and conduct -- Romans 12:1).
Our desires must be held under control lest they become the works of the flesh (Galatians 5).
(3) Temptation: pride of life. The temptation to cast Himself down from the temple seemed a logical procedure for Jesus to impress the crowd as to His person and mission. Jesus will follow no easy way to the throne. He must wear the crown of thorns before He wears the crown of glory. Stiner states succinctly, "There are two ways of despising God, one is to ignore Him and His love and the other is to presume upon it." Both are sin. It is easy to do nothing and then mouth pious platitudes about God providing for the sparrows and that He will take care of us. But God says, "In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread." The missionary to a foreign land will have to study to learn the language and then God will help him. We are partners of God, not puppets.
Dr. Edward Judson, after considering what his father,
Adoniram Judson, suffered in
Actually Jesus began His public ministry in His home
Chapter 5 - Luke carefully records the cleansing of the leper and the healing of the paralytic.
Chapter 6 -He records in detail the healing of the man on the sabbath with the paralyzed hand. He repeats the so-called Sermon on the Mount down on the plain (see verse 17). Jesus must have repeated these teachings again and again.
Chapter 7 -This chapter opens with another meticulous record of healing. In this case it is the centurion's servant. Although Jesus had no personal contact with the servant, he was made well.
Luke alone records the raising from the dead of the son of the widow of Nain. He is the only Gospel writer who records Jesus raising from the dead two persons (the other was Jairus' daughter: ,55).
Also in this chapter is the first of 18 parables that Luke alone records.
It grew out of Jesus' visit to the home of a Pharisee where a woman anointed His feet with ointment. The simple parable of the 2 debtors revealed that this woman of the street was better than Simon, the Pharisee.
Chapter 8 -This chapter records events that are in the other synoptic Gospels.
Chapter 9 -This chapter also records events found in Matthew and Mark. All three record the transfiguration. John does not record the transfiguration, as it sets forth the perfect humanity of Jesus and does not specifically add proof to His deity.
Verse 29 may give the impression that the light was shining upon Him as a spotlight. That is not the intention of Luke. Mark 9:3 reads: "And his raiment became shining, exceedingly white like s now, as no fuller on earth can whiten them." The word for transfigured is from the Greek metamorphoom. The English derivation is metamorphosis. Metamorphosis can be upward or downward:
(1) Upward-the ugly cocoon that became a beautiful butterfly, (2) Downward-death.
In the Transfiguration it is upward.
There are 3 steps in the life of Jesus:
(1) Innocent and holy-born without sin;
(2) Holy in the sense that He met temptation and overcame it (Adam never met this test);
(3) Transfigured-This is the goal for humanity. In the Transfiguration of Jesus we see the hope of humanity.
Luke alone elaborates upon this detail, as he does upon the contrasting condition-the boy demon-possessed at the foot of the mountain (vvs. 37-43). What a contrast!
Luke also gives much attention to demon possession. In
chapter 8 he records Jesus' visit to
Casting out a demon is the first miracle recorded by
Luke (-34). Demons recognized Jesus (), However,
the Bible says that Jesus performed His first miracle (sign) at
Demonism is distinguished from diseases (), Demonism was a reality.
Demons disturbed men physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.
A demon possessed person could not discipline self - the will is destroyed, leading to strange conduct (e.g., nudity).
The personality is degraded and debased. Ultimately he will be caused
to do frightful and terrifying acts (vvs. 39,42; ).
Demons belong to the spiritual world, not physical.
They dread the bottomless pit - would rather go into pigs - pigs would rather die.
Only Christ can deliver from the power of demons, as it is the power of Satan (vvs. 42,43; ).
But the signs of Jesus identify Him as having God's power over every aspect of life and nature.
Unclean spirit possession was to end according to
prophecy along with the period of miraculous power which included prophets
(inspired spokesmen for God) and idolatry of Baal. Zechariah 13:1,2 .
"In that day a fountain shall be opened for the house of David and for the
Verse 15 is the turning point in the ministry of
Jesus. He begins His march to
Chapter 10 -Luke alone records the parables of the Good Samaritan, one of the most familiar and famous parables.
Chapter 11 -The two parables on prayer are recorded only by Luke.
Most parables illustrate by comparison. These illustrate by contrast. The insistent friend and the sleepy neighbor who would not answer his door at certainly do not illustrate the reluctance of God to answer prayer. God is willing to answer and He is not sleepy. We are not insistent and persistent in prayer. In the second parable a human father never gives his son a stone as substitute for bread. Surely God is as good as a human father. He is much better! These parables illustrate by contrast.
Chapter 12 -Luke alone gives us the parable of the rich fool who built bigger barns in this life, but made no provisions for his soul in the next life.
Also the parable of the steward, who abused his servants because his lord seemed to delay his return, is unique in this Gospel.
Chapter 13 -Luke alone records the incident of Jesus healing the crippled woman in the synagogue on the sabbath.
Chapter 14 -Luke alone records the delightful occasion of Jesus going out to dinner at the home of one of the chief Pharisees, and of His giving His host and guests a lesson in etiquette in the devastating parable of the ambitious guest. Also there are two other parables in this chapter
that are in no other Gospel - the building of a tower and a king preparing to make war.
Chapter 15 -Luke alone records the most famous parable of all - labeled the Prodigal Son.
Chapter 16 -There are 2 parables here which are not found elsewhere.
The parable of the steward who used his position to further his selfish ends is another parable by contrast. The children of this world are clever and crooked in the use of money. They do it for their own selfish purposes. In contrast, the children of light do not exercise the same wisdom in the use of money for the cause of Christ in the world.
The parable of the rich man and Lazarus is actually not a parable, but an actual happening. The name of the poor man is given here and it is highly unlikely that our Lord would have made up a name and in the same account introduce Abraham by name. Perhaps all His parables are actual incidents. Our Lord follows these two men from this life through the doorway of death, and gives a record from the other sideafter death.
Chapter 17 -Luke alone records the brief parable about the dedicated service that belongs to the master, also the healing of the 10 lepers with the attendant thanklessness of the 9.
Chapter 18 -The parable of the unjust judge is another teaching on prayer by contrast. God is no unjust judge who has to be prodded into action by the insistent pleadings of a widow who makes herself a nuisance.
The parable of the Pharisee and publican who went up to the temple to pray shows the attitude of people when they pray.
Chapter 19 -Jesus detours through
Chapter 20 -Luke records the incident (as do Matthew and Mark)
of the encounter of Jesus with the religious rulers in the temple area in
Chapter 21 -Luke records that part of the Olivet discourse which is the answer to the first of the three questions asked by the disciples, "When shall these things be?" (that one stone shall not be left upon another).
when ye shall see
Chapter 22 -Luke records the Passover,
Chapter 23 -Luke follows the other synoptic Gospels in giving the account of Jesus before Pilate, the crucifixion and burial of Jesus. Luke alone includes the record of Jesus being sent to Herod by Pilate. Jesus' silence before Herod is startling.. Jesus had no word for Herod. He formerly had called him "that old fox."
Chapter 24 -Luke records the resurrection of Jesus as Matthew, Mark and John do.
Luke alone records the journey of the resurrected Jesus down the Emmaus road and His encounter with two disciples. He walked with these two down a dusty road and ate with them.
Jesus literally had arisen from the dead (Romans 1:4).
Jesus also appears to His disciples in an upper room and eats with them.
"Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself; handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have "... "And they gave him a piece of a broiled fish, and an honeycomb. And he took it, and did eat before them" [Luke 24:39,42,431.
The most important highlight in both instances is His reference to the Scriptures to substantiate His death and resurrection.
I. BEFORE CHRIST'S MINISTRY chapters 1-3
Announcement of the Births of John and Jesus;
the Birth of John chapter 1
(I) Purpose of Gospel, 1: 1-4
(2) Gabriel Appears to Zacharias and Announces the Birth of John, 1: 5-25
(3) Gabriel Appears to Mary and Announces the Virgin Birth of Jesus, -38
(4) Mary Visits Elisabeth, 1:39-56
(Hail Mary and Magnificat)
Birth of Jesus; His Reception; His Circumcision;
His Journey to
(I) Birth of Jesus at
(2) Reception of Jesus: Angels Announce His Birth to Shepherds; Shepherds Visit Stable, 2:8-20
(3) Circumcision of Jesus and Purification of Mary, 2:21-24 (Leviticus, ch. 12)
(4) Incident in
(5) Incident in
(6) Visit of Joseph, Mary and Jesus to
When Jesus was Twelve, -52
(Luke says He was growing normally in body, mind and spirit - v. 52.)
Ministry of John the Baptist; Baptism of Jesus;
Genealogy of Mary chapter 3
I. Ministry of John, 3: 1-20
Baptism of Jesus, ,22 (Trinity - v. 22)
Genealogy of Mary, 3:23-38
(Mary was also descended from David, v. 31 . see Matt. 1.)
II. TESTING OF THE PERFECT MAN; REJECTION BY HIS HOME TOWN chapter 4
"Tempted like as we are" (Heb. 4: I 5).
1. Temptation of Jesus,4:1-I3
(N.B., "for a season", v. 13, see temptations in Matthew and in Mark.)
2. His Hometown, 4: 14-30 (Jesus quotes from Isaiah 61: 1, 2 in v. 18.)
3. Jesus Moves
His Headquarters to
OF THE PERFECT MAN IN AREA OF
Jesus Calls Disciples for the Second Time; Cleanses Lepers;
Heals Man with Palsy; Calls Matthew; Gives Parables on New Garment
and Wine Skins 5
Jesus Defends Disciples for Plucking Grain on Sabbath; Heals Paralyzed
Man on Sabbath; Chooses the Twelve; Gives Sermon on Plain................. 6
Jesus Heals Centurion's Servant; Restores to Life Son of Widow of Nain; Commends John the Baptist; Goes to Dinner at Pharisee's House;
Gives Parable of Two Debtors 7
Jesus Gives Parables: Sower, Lighted Candle, Personal
Relationships; Stills Storm; Casts out Demons at
of Blood; Restores to Life Daughter of Jairus 8
Jesus Commissions and Sends
Puts Down Test for Discipleship 9
Enters Home of Mary and Martha 10
Jesus Teaches Disciples to Pray by Using Parables of the Persistent Friend, and a Good Father; Accused of Casting Out Demons by Beelzebub; Gives Parables of Unclean Spirit Leaving a Man,
Lighted Candle, Sign of Jonah; Denounces Pharisees 11
(First 2 parables are by contrast, not comparison.)
Jesus Warns of Leaven of Pharisees; Gives Parable of Rich Fool, Return from Wedding, Testing of Servants in Light of Coming
of Christ; States He is a Divider of Men 12
Jesus Teaches Men Not to Judge but Repent; Gives Parable of
Fig Tree; Heals Woman with Infirmity; Gives Parables
of Mustard Seed and Leaven; Continues to Teach as He Goes Toward
Dinner at Home of Pharisee, Gives Parables of Impolile Guests, the Great Supper, Building a Tower,
King Going to War, Salt That Loses Its Tang 14
Jesus Gives Parable of Lost Sheep,l.ost Coin, 2 Lost Sons
(Prodigal Son) 15
(The obedient Son is the One who is giving the parable.)
Jesm. Gives Parable About Unjust Steward; Answers Covetous Pharisees; Speaks on Divorce; Recounts Incident of Rich Man
and Lazarus (Poor to.tan) 16
Jesus Instructs His Disciples on forgiveness, Faithful Service; Heals 10 Lepers (1 Samaritan Returns to GIVE Thanks);
Speaks on Spirilual nature of Kingdom and His Coming Again 17
Jesus Gives 2 Parables on Prayer; Blesses l.ittle Children; Confronts Rich Young Ruler with 5 of 10 Commandments,
Again Announces His Death; Heals Blind Man Oll
OF THE PERFECT MAN IN
Jesus' Authorily Challenged; Gives Parable of Vineyard; Questioned about Paying Tribute 10 Caesar;
Silences Sadducees about Resurrection; Questions Scribes 20
Jesus Notes How People Give, Commends Widow; Answers Question in Olivet Discourse, "When Shall These Things Be?" 21
VI. BETRAYAL, TRIAL AND DEATH OF THE PER FECT MAN, Chapters 22. 23 (Our Kinsman Redeemer)
Judas Plots with chief priests10
Betrays Jesus; Jesus Plans for Last Passover and
Institutes Lord's Supper; Announces His Betrayal, Prophesies of Apostles in
Warns Disciples of Future; Goes to Gclhsemane;
Detrayed by Judas; Arrested, Lead to High Priest's House;
Denied by Peter; Mocked, Dealen, Broughl Defore Sanhedrin 22
Jesus Brought before Pilate and Herod; Barahbas Released; Jesus Crucified; Mocked by Rulers, Soldiers, One Thief; Other Thief Turns to Jesus, is Accepted by Him (before New Testament comes in force -Hebrews 9:15-17);
Dismisses His Spirit; Placed in New Tomb of Joseph of Arimalhaea 23
VII. RAISED chapter 24
. Jesus Raised from Ihe Dead; Leaves Joseph's Tumb, 24: 1-12
Jesus Goes to the Assembled Disciples, Reveals Himself to the 11; Gives Great Commission to Go, 24:35-48
VIII. ASCENSION Of THE PERFECT MAN. Chapler 24:49.53
Jesus Promises to Send Holy Splrit; Ascends to Heaven in Attitude of Blessing His Own, 24:49-53.