The Chronological Gospel –

Some Results of Luke’s Research

Luke 10:1-24
Luke 10:25-37
Random Walk in a Gallery of Religious Art, Step 37: Luke 10:25-37, The Good Samaritan, by William Hogarth
Luke 10:38-42
Luke 11:1-13
Luke 11:14-36
Luke 11:37-54
Luke 12:1-12
Luke 12:13-34
Luke 12:35-59
Luke 13:1-9
Luke 13:10-21

More of The Chronological Gospel

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Luke 10:1-24, Some results of Luke’s research (6/13/14)

The Gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke have a lot in common; however, Matthew and Luke each added materials of their own. In fact, Luke says in Luke 1:1-3, “Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile a narrative of the things that have been accomplished among us, ... it seemed good to me also, having followed all things closely for some time past, to write an orderly account for you...” Luke did research on his own, and here we’ll read some of his results that are not in the other Gospels.

We don’t know for sure when all this extra stuff recorded by Luke happened; I’m putting it here for three reasons. First, John does not seem to imply that Jesus remained in Jerusalem between the Festivals of Tabernacles (which we just read) and Lights (which is the next thing that John records). Second, Jesus had to be somewhere during that time, and the big crowds we read about here seem to imply that he was out in the country. Finally, I think he’d probably wait until the disciples had learned quite a bit from him before he sent them out on their own, and we’re getting fairly far along in Jesus’ ministry.


Luke 10:25-37 (6/16/14)

One thing that rabbis and teachers of the law did was debate with each other on the very fine details of what any particular Law or bit of history really meant. Although I’ve always sort of assumed that the lawyer in this case was trying to catch Jesus with a trick question, it’s possible that he was actually engaging Jesus in collegial discussion. Jesus agrees that the lawyer’s answer was correct, but (like many debaters I have known), the man wouldn’t take “yes” for an answer. Jesus gives him a longer answer: your neighbor is the person right in front of you who needs help. Give it.


Luke 10:25-37, The Good Samaritan, by William Hogarth (7/21/15)

A parable is a story with a single theological point, and the main thing I like about this painting of The Good Samaritan by William Hogarth is that it has only got one point: the Samaritan stops what he’s doing to take care of the wounded stranger. The painting has no angels, no beautiful scenery, and nobody standing around and watching. It does add one whimsical point – even the stranger’s dog has been wounded! The Levite passing by on the other side of the road is there if you look carefully. Hogarth’s point seems to be about the same as Jesus’ point: stop what you’re doing and help people who need help, even when nobody is watching you.

Previous Step. Next Step.
The Good Samaritan. Click to enlarge. See below for provenance.
"The Good Samaritan" by William Hogarth, from the Gamble family Bible,
now in the private collection of Regina Hunter. Photography by Daryl Lee.


Luke 10:38-42 (6/17/14)

Mary and Martha were the sisters of Lazarus, whom Jesus later raised from the dead. Apparently they were good friends of Jesus, because we know more about them than about most of his acquaintances.


Luke 11:1-13 (6/18/14)

Matthew reports similar versions of the Lord’s Prayer (Matthew 6:9-13) and the importance of asking, seeking, and knocking (Matthew 7:7-11) in the Sermon on the Mount. Luke doesn’t put these into his account of the Sermon on the Plain, which seems to have been a couple of days later (Luke 7), but rather much later, as we read today. Here’s what I think: Jesus traveled around speaking to different crowds in different areas, but always with about the same message. I see no need to think that either Luke or Matthew got things in “the wrong order.”


Luke 11:14-36 (6/19/14)

A little while back, Jesus told John, “Whoever is not against us is for us” (Luke 9:50). Now he tells the crowds, “Whoever is not with me is against me.” When it comes to believing in Jesus, there are no fence-sitters.


Luke 11:37-54 (6/20/14)

By the first century, a large body of written and oral tradition had grown up around the Law; chief among the upholders of these traditions were the Pharisees and the lawyers. Some of these traditions concerned hand washing, and Jesus’ host was amazed and probably offended that Jesus did not abide by these traditions and wash up for dinner. Jesus makes two points. First, adherence to tradition is no substitute for love and justice. Second, tradition that is merely a burden is of no value.

Luke 12:1-12 (6/23/14)

Yep, the Greek really does say, “tens of thousands.” By this point in his ministry, Jesus was attracting enormous crowds, which is why I think he had to have been out in the country somewhere most of the time. Where in Jerusalem could such a crowd have gathered?

By the way, the exact nature of the unforgivable sin of blasphemy against the Holy Spirit is the subject of much debate. I thought Pastor Craig had an especially interesting take on the matter a couple weeks ago when he said that it is refusing to allow the Holy Spirit to enter your life.


Luke 12:13-34 (6/24/14)

People came to Jesus with all kinds of problems: illnesses and demon-possession, theological questions, trick questions and serious questions. Now somebody wants him to answer a question about division of property. Jesus says the most important thing to remember about property is that it won’t make you happy or save your life. God will.


Luke 12:35-59 (6/25/14)

When Jesus says, “Be ready,” Peter asks him, “Who exactly are you talking to?” In this I have a lot of sympathy for Peter. It’s easy for me to say that you should always be ready for the coming of the Master, but it’s hard for me to stay ready all the time.


Luke 13:1-9 (6/26/14)

One of the world’s great questions is, “Why ME??!!” Solomon said, “The race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, nor bread to the wise, nor riches to the intelligent, nor favor to those with knowledge, but time and chance happen to them all.” Jesus says that the Galileans murdered by Pilate were no worse than any other Galileans, and the people killed when a tower collapsed were no worse than anyone else in Jerusalem. So probably a more reasonable question would be, “Why not me?” Our lives could end at any minute. Do we want that to happen when we are impenitent sinners? It’s important to be ready at all times, and to be fruitful in the meantime.


Luke 13:10-21 (6/27/14)

There are some people who seemingly cannot take delight in another person’s good fortune. Maybe they think the good fortune was undeserved, or maybe they think they would have been a more appropriate recipient of the good fortune. If all else fails, they think no one should have gotten this particular piece of good fortune! When Jesus worked a miracle on the Sabbath, the leaders of the synagogue fell into that last category. They resented the freeing of this little old woman from her infirmity, not realizing that the Sabbath is the best day of all for miracles. Let’s try to be open to miracles during our worship services.


More of The Chronological Gospel

Birth Announcements and Early Lives of Jesus and John the Baptist
Early Ministries of Jesus and John the Baptist
Jesus’ Early Ministry
Jesus’ Galilean Ministry
Sabbath Controversies
The Sermon on the Mount
The Sermon on the Plain
John the Baptist
Signs and Parables
Miracles and Mission Trips
Bread of Life
Miracles and Meanings
Transfiguration and Teachings
To Jerusalem for the Festival of Tabernacles
Some Results of Luke’s Research
Light
More of Luke’s Research
On the Road Again
The Raising of Lazarus
Holy Week: Palm Sunday and Monday
Holy Week: Tuesday, Parables and Questions
Holy Week: Wednesday Part 1, Discussions
Holy Week: Wednesday Part 2, Be Ready!
Holy Week: Thursday Part 1, Jesus' Celebration of the Passover
Holy Week: Thursday Part 2, Jesus' Farewell Discourse
Holy Week: Friday Part 1, Jesus' Arrest and Two Informal Trials
Holy Week: Friday Part 2, More Trials
Holy Week: Friday, Part 3, and Saturday, Jesus' Death and Burial
The Empty Tomb
Final Appearances of Jesus Prior to Pentecost

Copyright 2014, 2015, 2016 by Regina L. Hunter. All rights reserved. This page has been prepared for the web site by RPB.

Opinions expressed on this page are solely those of the author, Regina Hunter, and may or may not be shared by the sponsors or the Bible-study participants.  Thanks to the Holy Spirit for any useful ideas presented here, and thanks to all the readers for their support and enthusiasm.  All errors are, of course, the sole responsibility of the author.

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