Sunday

The Gospel of Luke - Chapters 6 & 7


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What do we read about in the sixth & seventh chapters of Luke's Gospel?
What do we learn from Luke?


What is the main focus?
Is it important to know the words from this chapter?







I am doing this in response to an Advent Reading challenge where we read 1 chapter of the Gospel of Luke per day from 1st to 24th December which will allow the whole book to be read.

I don't plan to post every day but will try to do so every two days and end on the 24th.


If you missed The Overview or any of the chapters please click  HERE  for a list of them all.



Now let's look at the Sixth Chapter of Luke.



Today we are dividing this chapter into 5 sections


Jesus & The Sabbath v. 1-11:

Those Scribes & Pharisees really like to accuse Jesus and his followers don't they.

Lots of people are like that today as well and show judgemental attitudes instead of loving attitudes.


So in the starting verses we see the Pharisees accusing the disciples of of breaking the laws of the Sabbath and then we see them just waiting on another Sabbath Day to be able to accuse Jesus of breaking the laws.

In the first instance they don't understand that Jesus is Lord of all so the Sabbath is subject to Him.

In the second instance Jesus knowing that they were watching and waiting turned the situation round and showed that the laws that had been made to be so important around the Sabbath were being misused and that evil was coming from that instead of the good that should.

Healing a man was from the goodness of God.

Being anxious to be able to make accusations and get their own way was from the evil of Satan.

Verse 11  shows clearly the evil that was growing in their hearts.
But they were filled with rage, and discussed with one another what they might do to Jesus.

Such a strong statement showing the strength of the emotion they were feeling.


The Twelve Apostles v. 12-19:

Obviously there were now several followers of Jesus called disciples but this section now gives us the calling of the 12 who were to become known as the Apostles.

The 12 were:
Simon  (who Jesus named Peter)
Andrew  (Simon's brother)
James  &  John  ( mentioned previously as the sons of Zebedee)
Philip
Bartholomew
Matthew
Thomas
James  (son of Alphaeus)
Simon  (the Zealot)
Judas  (son of James)
Judas  (Iscariot)

These were the ones who were to work and learn closely from Him and completed the requirements for Jesus then to be regarded as a Rabbi  -  a teacher with at least 10 male disciples/students.

We are not told what made these twelve different from the others but obviously they were particularly chosen by God.

How do we know that God was in control of this choice?

Look at verses 12-13
 12 Now it came to pass in those days that He went out to the mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.  
13 And when it was day, He called His disciples to Himself; and from them He chose twelve whom He also named apostles

Just like we saw in the last chapter Jesus spent time in prayer before the choice was made.






After this choosing of the twelve, they all came down from the mountain and multitudes from different places were drawn to Jesus and were healed & delivered from unclean spirits.

verse 19 shows the power of the Holy Spirit through Jesus
And the whole multitude sought to touch Him, for power went out from Him and healed them all.



The Beatitudes v. 20-26:

verse 20 continues by saying
Then He lifted up His eyes toward His disciples

It does not tell us if they went to another place or if this was another day or time but just Then.

So as Jesus stood there presumably shortly afterwards speaking these words that we refer to as the Beatitudes so He was in the same presence of the Spirit as he was during the miracles of healing and deliverance.

Surely that is something to remember as we listen to people who seek to preach to us or teach us and make sure that they are filled with the Holy Spirit and guided by God in all they say and not speaking just simply from their own thoughts.

It also says He was speaking to the disciples and does not mention all the other people so does this mean this was teaching for His own followers?







When we read the Beatitudes we normally go to Matthew's Gospel chapter 5 where we read 9 statements of the same type starting with the word  Blessed  and then 1 starting with Rejoice.
We do not find any Beatitudes in the other two gospels.

Here in Luke we have 4 starting with Blessed  and then 1 starting with Rejoice  followed by 4 statements starting with Woe

It's a bit like having the good news followed by the bad news.

In both gospels the last Blessed statement is the same and the Rejoice statement is there straight after it to show us how we are to react to it.

As for the Woes in Luke's Gospel they are almost like the opposite way round to the blessings.  
Is Jesus telling the disciples that the first set of attitudes is the correct way but the second is the wrong way.




Love and Do Not Judge  v. 27-42:

So often we hear things like "we are not supposed to judge others"  but mostly we use this in the wrong way - you know that thing about always reading in context!!!!

Well today we could have two questions from this section:
1.  Who should we love?
2.  Who should we not judge?


The verse below answers question 1.

I may not be an answer that is easy for us to accept because we want to love those who are loveable.
We want to love those who love us.

But God's way is better than our way.






Where is the answer to question 2?

Well Jesus used a parable to answer this one.

He talked about blind leading the blind - useless, one is as blind as the other.

He talked about the speck in someone else's eye while there is a plank in our eye.


But none of us are righteous enough to be able to judge others, there is no-one righteous except Jesus.



I think verse 36  sums up how we need to behave





Although God is a righteous God He wants us to be merciful because He is a God of mercy.





A Tree & A Rock  v. 43-49:

Here Jesus continues to teach and points to good and bad not being the result of each other.

He uses the illustration of a tree in verse 43
For a good tree does not bear bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear  good fruit.

leading into the words of wisdom in verse 45






Then Jesus points out that although the disciples are learning from Him and recognise Him as Lord they do not do as He teaches.

Jesus wants us to come follow Him but that means to do His Will and that is to obey Him and if we doing this we will be like the next parable he tells.

The parable of the man who built his house on the rock - the firm foundation -  the floods could not destroy the house because it was on the right foundation unlike one that was built without a sure foundation.

Leaving us at the end of chapter 6 thinking about how we can be on the right foundation.

Answer - Jesus and the truth of God's Word must be our firm foundation and we can really only have that foundation when we wholly trust in Jesus.










Now let's look at the Seventh Chapter of Luke.



Today we are dividing this chapter into 4 sections.

In each one Jesus meets various people and the interactions between them are very significant.


Jesus Heals the Centurion's Servant  v. 1-10:

Jesus is in Capernaum.

A Centurion has a servant who is dying.
The Centurion sends elders of the Jews to ask Jesus to come to heal the servant.
The elders come and tell Jesus the centurion's request and explain that he is a worthy man because they have benefited from his generosity.

The the centurion sends friends to Jesus when he is close to his home asking Jesus not to bother to come but simply say the word and he knows his servant will be healed.
The Centurion recognises the authority Jesus has over sickness and also recognises that he is not worthy to even have Jesus in his home.

Jesus marvels at this and says He has not found such faith before and the servant is healed.

Contrasting the Jewish elders and the Centurion.
-  the former want the Centurion kept happy to continue being good to the city.
-  the latter wants to help his servant but does not think himself deserving of the attention of Jesus.



Jesus Raises the Son of the Widow of Nain  v. 11-17:

Now Jesus has gone to Nain.
The disciples and a large crowd are with Him.

There is a widow with one son who then has to endure the sorrow and worry when her son dies.
Jesus about to enter the city meets the funeral of this widow's son with a large crowd accompanying it.

What happened?
Jesus had compassion on her and brought her son back to life.

The result:
- the large crowd witnessed a miracle
- the widow was joyful
- a life was restored

but also let's not forget the fact that all that witnessed this
- experienced the fear (awe) of God
- glorified God
because they knew God was with them.



What qualities are shown in Luke chapter 7?



John the Baptist Sends Messengers to Jesus  v. 18-35:

John sends followers to Jesus to ask if Jesus is the one John was expecting.

Jesus healed and delivered people while John's followers were with Him so they actually witnessed the power of the Holy Spirit for themselves - the best way to know for certain what is happening and not by hearsay.

In verses 22-23  Jesus then told them to
22 “Go and tell John the things you have seen and heard:             that the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed,     the deaf hear, the dead are raised, the poor have the gospel     preached to them.  
23 And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me.”

Jesus goes on to tell the multitudes that John was a great prophet.

All those who had been baptised by John were happy with this.

But not the Pharisees and lawyers the usual ones to complain or grumble about everything to do with Jesus.

Jesus knew that no matter what was done for them they were not changing and he called them out on that in verses 33-34


33 For John the Baptist came neither eating bread nor drinking wine, and you say, ‘He has a demon.’ 
34 The Son of Man has come eating and drinking, and you say, ‘Look, a glutton and a wine bibber, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’ 

Basically Jesus was saying nothing would please them, they would find something to use as an accusation.






Jesus Forgives a Sinful Woman  v. 36-50:

Jesus goes to the home of a Pharisee for a meal.

While he is there a woman who was a well-known "sinner" does 5 things in His presence

1.  weeps
2.  washes His feet with her tears
3.  dries His feet with her hair
4.  kisses his feet
5.  pours perfume over His feet

The Pharisee immediately starts thinking of another accusation against Jesus saying to himself in verse 39b
“This Man, if He were a prophet, would know who and what manner of woman this is who is touching Him, for she is a sinner.”
Jesus knows what the accusation is without hearing it and tells Simon the Pharisee the parable of the two debtors in verses 41-43  
41 “There was a certain creditor who had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty.  
42 And when they had nothing with which to repay, he freely forgave them both. Tell Me, therefore, which of them will love him more?"    
43 Simon answered and said, “I suppose the one whom he forgave more.” And He said to him, “You have rightly judged.”


Jesus then compares Simon with the woman:
  • Simon did not wash the feet of Jesus,  the woman did & dried them.
  • Simon did not greet Jesus with a kiss,  the woman kissed his feet repeatedly.
  • Simon did not anoint the head of Jesus with oil,  the woman anointed His feet with fragrant oil.


The woman loved greatly and receives forgiveness for her sins.

If only we were humble enough that  verses 48-50  would be the said to us
48 Then He said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”
49 And those who sat at the table with Him began to say to themselves, “Who is this who even forgives sins?”
50 Then He said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you. Go in peace.”

The woman also receives the peace of God, is this not something we all would ask for.


What qualities stand out for me in this chapter?


Faith

Compassion

Power of the Holy Spirit

Forgiveness

Peace





If you would like to read more of the posts in this series please click  HERE  for a list of them all.




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