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“You Are the Christ, the Son of God”

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I find it interesting that Luke would begin Jesus’ ministry with a miracle that casts out a demon. Why do that? It is the first miracle performed by Jesus in both Luke (Luke 4:31-36) and Mark (cf. Mark 1:21-27). Matthew mentions this only generally (Matthew 4:23-25), but John begins Jesus public ministry with the miracle of changing water into wine (John 2:1-11). The accounts end with the astonishment of the people (the Synoptics) and the belief of the disciples (John). What can we make of these things? Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on September 29, 2016 in Gospel of Luke

 

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Peter’s Mother-in-law’s Fever

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Jesus was rejected in Nazareth and challenged in Capernaum, but his disciples trusted him, that what he claimed was true (cf. John 1:40-49; 2:11). Knowing this, it seems justified that the text should show that it was Jesus’ disciples who first asked him to do something on their behalf, not as a sign, but as a work of mercy. That is, they appealed to his compassion (Luke 4:38). This is quite different from demanding a sign like changing stones to bread or leaping from a great pinnacle (Luke 4:3, 9). They weren’t looking for signs and wonders that would appeal to their curiosity, but in their compassion for the weak, they appealed to Jesus’ compassion. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on September 27, 2016 in Gospel of Luke

 

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Jesus and Demons

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The words Jesus spoke in Capernaum (Luke 4:31-34) must have been similar to what he claimed in Nazareth. In Nazareth Jesus used Scripture to say he was the Messiah, and there the community rose up against him. However, in Capernaum it was a demoniac that rose up against Jesus. One has to wonder if the demoniac in Capernaum tried to do something similar to Jesus that the whole community at Nazareth intended on doing. In other words, the demoniac, at least at first, may have been considered to be in his right mind by the community of Capernaum, because demoniacs, as a rule, are not permitted in the synagogue.[1] The man may even have been a well respected and feared leader in the synagogue. In this context he may have risen up in the assembly to challenge Jesus, saying that his claim to be the Messiah would end in the Romans destroying the nation (cf. Mark 1:24 and John 11:48), or at least the city from which Jesus began gathering a following. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on September 25, 2016 in Gospel of Luke

 

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Jesus Spoke with Authority

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Luke tells us that, after Jesus left Nazareth, he came to Capernaum and taught there on the Sabbaths (Luke 4:31), and on one Sabbath he was challenged by a man having an unclean spirit (Luke 4:33-34). Whatever one may think of unclean spirits, e.g. demons[1], spirits of the wicked dead[2] or a fractured human spirit that is bent on destroying self or others, the New Testament reveals that Jesus and his disciples had authority over them. It makes no difference what they really are; the point in the New Testament is their power over men is undone by the authority of Jesus. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on September 22, 2016 in Gospel of Luke

 

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The Unfavorable Contrast

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In Luke 4:25-27 Jesus unfavorably contrasted his countrymen, his neighbors at Nazareth, with two gentiles, one from Sidon and the other from Syria. Both the widow, whose food supply never failed because of the word of Elijah, and the leper, who was healed by the prophet, Elisha, believed the word of God. In other words they let the word, as it was spoken by the prophet, bear fruit in their lives. Yet, the Nazarenes wouldn’t allow this to occur with Jesus’ words. Rather, they demanded him, as though he ruled over the power that rested upon him, to do a miracle and prove who he claimed to be (cf. Luke 4:22). Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on September 20, 2016 in Gospel of Luke

 

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No Prophet Is Accepted in His Own Town

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One way of looking at these first events in Jesus’ public life is that Nazareth is in some degree like Cana (John 2:1).[1] What do I mean? Well, the meaning of the word Cana is “place of reeds” (Kana – G2580).[2] A reed was used as a unit of measure (Ezekiel 40:3, 5-8; Revelation 11:1) of six great cubits (Ezekiel 41:8) or about 9 feet. What I find interesting is that the town of Nazareth was measuring Jesus as they would one of their own (Luke 4:22b). It is difficult to see or understand the importance of a person when we think we know all there is to know about him. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on September 18, 2016 in Gospel of Luke

 

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Whatever We Have Heard…

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Some folks who try to harmonize the Gospels believe that the time when Jesus came to Nazareth in Luke 4 is the same time he came to Nazareth in Matthew 13 and Mark 6, but this is not so. Rather, the other Synoptics are the fulfillment of what Jesus prophesied in Luke 4:23. Notice what Jesus said in Luke:

Luke 4:23 KJV  And he said unto them, Ye will surely say unto me this proverb, Physician, heal thyself: whatsoever we have heard done in Capernaum, do also here in thy country. (emphasis mine) Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on September 15, 2016 in Gospel of Luke

 

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