Week One: Luke’s Own Introduction

Have you read the introduction to this study yet? If not, click here.

I’m going to spread out each weekly study into several blogposts so that you have time to think about each element of the study. The introduction was part one, and here is part two:

More than half of the book of Luke chronicles Jesus’ final journey to Jerusalem. where his death would bring us this peace. Luke, the author of the book, did not accompany Jesus on that journey (or at all, during Jesus’ life on earth). Let’s look at Luke’s introduction to his book. Here are the first four verses in two different versions:

Many people have set out to write accounts about the events that have been fulfilled among us. They used the eyewitness reports circulating among us from the early disciples. Having carefully investigated everything from the beginning, I also have decided to write an accurate account for you, most honorable Theophilus, so you can be certain of the truth of everything you were taught. (Luke 1:1-4 NLT)

Since [as is well known] many have undertaken to compile an orderly account of the things which have been fulfilled among us [by God], exactly as they were handed down to us by those [with personal experience] who from the beginning [of Christ’s ministry] were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word [that is, of the teaching concerning salvation through faith in Christ], it seemed fitting for me as well, [and so I have decided] after having carefully searched out and investigated all the events accurately, from the very beginning, to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus; so that you may know the exact truth about the things you have been taught [that is, the history and doctrine of the faith]. (Luke 1:1-4 Amplified)

According to these verses, was Luke the first person to write an account of Jesus’ life?

Using phrases from these verses, how would you describe Luke’s methods of research?

Who did Luke write to, and why?

Theophilus means “dear to God.” He was probably a Gentile, and the “most excellent” title Luke gave him is used in other New Testament Scriptures to refer to respected officials. (Acts 24:2, Acts 26:25)

Luke was a doctor (a “beloved physician” according to Colossians 4:14) who traveled with the Apostle Paul. Paul referred to him as a “fellow worker.” (Philemon 24) Luke is the only Gentile author of Scripture.

Luke’s Gospel contains more parables and more stories about women than any of the other Gospels. Luke focused on all levels of society, showing us Jesus sharing meals with despised tax collectors as well as respected religious leaders. Luke also gave us more of Jesus’ teaching on prayer and showed Jesus in prayer more often than the other Gospel accounts.

If you’re ready to move on, click here.
Luke's Gospel

Photo Credit: Henk Bouma

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