Luke

Luke

Jesus Clams Up: Luke 22:63-71

The Fear of Man Historiography is a selective process. We don’t know the names of many privates or corporals from the Civil War, and not every battle makes it into our history books. Like any historian, Luke had to be selective. Like any good historian, Luke chose just the right details to make his point well. He tells us nothing about the trial before Annas (John 18:12-24) or even the night-time trial before Caiaphas (Matt. 26:57-68). Nor does he mention…

The Rock is Broken ~ Luke 22:54-62

Peter Stepped Up and Stumbled Peter put himself out there when he confessed Jesus to be the Christ in Luke 9:20. And when all were deserting Jesus after the Bread of Life Discourse, Jesus stood fast, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life,” (John 6:68 ESV) And, while his rebuke in Matthew 16:22 was clearly misguided (Jesus even refers to him as Satan), surely his words indicate a sentiment of brave loyalty, the same…

Following Jesus through the Valley

A Sharp Contrast The disciples wasted no time moving from “Who’s the worst among us?” … “Who’s the traitor?” … “Who could do such a thing as to betray our Lord?” … to jockeying for position, determining for themselves a pecking order. But if we read Luke 22:24 closely, we find that they aren’t even actually interested in being the greatest. At least not in this iteration of their favorite discussion. They are willing to settle for the imitation ……

How Could Judas Do Such a Thing?

Satan Conspires and Men are Culpable Have you ever wondered about Judas? How could a guy who spent the last 2 to 3 years traveling around the country with Jesus stoop so low as to betray him? The answer is only hinted at in Luke, but the Gospels as a whole answer it clearly enough. Luke only tells us that the priests and scribes “agreed to give him money.” (Luke 22:5) But Matthew informs us that it was Judas who…

Ready to Stand: Filtering the ‘Noise’ from the Olivet Discourse

When the Bible starts talking about Jesus’ return, it’s easy to get lost in enigmatic details, and it’s easy to forget what is really important. As we consider Luke’s version of the Olivet Discourse (Luke 21:5-38), one way to avoid getting all confused is to focus our attention on the commands that Jesus gives in that passage. Context The whole issue comes up in a roundabout way. Jesus had just finished condemning the hypocrisy of scribes, who are all about…

Sacrifice: its motivation and its measure

During Jesus’ last week, we don’t find many examples of him commending people. The establishment is corrupt. It is proud and pretentious, and has become a farce. Like we who bear God’s image, yet offer but a dim and distorted reflection of His glory and character, the temple was intended to be a picture of Jesus and his sacrifice. Instead, it had become the cash cow of the power brokers in Jerusalem. It was outliving its usefulness. That’s the subject…

No Marriage in Heaven

Jesus’ answer to the Sadducees (Luke 20:27-38) could leave those of us who love our spouses rather sad. He plainly declares that there will be no marriage in heaven. And Jesus said to them, “The sons of this age marry and are given in marriage, 35 but those who are considered worthy to attain to that age and to the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage, (Luke 20:34–35 ESV) Levirate Marriage and the Promise The…

Wisdom Solves a Riddle

Even though the Sanhedrin had made up their minds about Jesus, they didn’t have the spine to act. They were afraid of the crowds, who were hanging on Jesus’ every word. So they sent spies, with a fawning pretense, attempt to either sever Jesus from the crowd, or find an excuse to let Rome get rid of him. The Character of the Questioners Luke gives us insight into the character of these men at the end of chapter 19. There,…

Blind Watchmen and Mute Watchdogs

When representatives of the Sanhedrin question the nature and source of Jesus’ authority, he responds with a question of his own. His question plainly exposes their hearts. They are blind watchmen, mute watchdogs … worthless leaders. And they will soon lose their own authority Authority The scene is comical and full of irony. The Sanhedrin (the chief priests and the scribes with the elders) comes to Jesus to challenge both the nature of his authority and its source. They want…

An Angry Jesus

An Angry Jesus Cleanses the Temple Luke is restrained in his account, only saying that Jesus drove out those who sold. Mark is much more graphic, saying that he “began to drive out those who sold and those who bought in the temple, and he overturned the tables of the money-changers and the seats of those who sold pigeons. And he would not allow anyone to carry anything through the temple.” To understand why Jesus is angry, we need to…

The Coming of the King

The Triumphal Entry As Jesus finally reaches Jerusalem, Luke shows us a dramatic contrast. On one side of the contrast, we see Jesus and his disciples; Jesus openly declaring himself to be the Messiah, and the disciples bowing the knee to the King. On the other side we see the Pharisees, with Jerusalem associated, rejecting their king. This is the reality that Luke has been building to all along. There are really only two responses to Jesus, a fruitful submission…

Return on Investment

The Kingdom Seminar As Jesus makes his final approach toward Jerusalem, Luke has turned our attention to matters of the kingdom. First, he noted that the kingdom is not coming with pomp and circumstance, but quietly, in the submission of his disciples to the reign of God. In other words, in this age, the kingdom of God will be more of a reign than a realm. Men will forsake their other gods, such as money and ease, and bow the…
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