This Is The Word Of The Lord
Sunday November 17th, 2013
Post # 975
Luke’s name – of Latin origin – indicates that he apparently was not of Jewish derivation. The earliest surviving testimony describes him as a Syrian from Antioch. His abundant acquaintance with the Antiochian Church, as well as his knowledge of literary Greek, both illustrated in his writings, supports this testimony.
Tradition and one text of St. Paul’s (Colossians 4:14) say that Luke was a trained physician. His Gospel exhibits a Greek literary style absent from the other Gospels and documents of the New Testament. Luke, apparently, was a well-educated man. His Greek was as polished as that of such classical writers as Xenophon.
Luke’s association with the disciples of Jesus probably began after Christ’s death, in the early 30s of the 1st century. His Gospel reveals a special acquaintance with Mary, the mother of Jesus, and tradition describes him as a friend and companion of Paul and of Mark.
When Paul began his second missionary journey, about 49 A.D., Luke became a member of the party, joining Paul at the town of Troas and traveling to Macedonia with him (Acts 16: 11-12). Luke then probably remained at Philippi, rejoining Paul when he had finished his third missionary journey and was returning to Jerusalem (Acts 20:5, 26:18).
The Acts further say that Luke accompanied Paul when Paul was taken as a prisoner to Rome to be judged by Caesar (Acts 27:1, 28:26). The contents of Paul’s letters to Philemon (24) and Timothy (II, 4:11) reveal that Luke probably stayed with Paul until Paul’s death. A document called the Anti-Marcionite Prologue, which dates from the end of the 2nd century, says that Luke died unmarried in Boeotia or Bithynia at the age of 84 toward the end of the 1st century.
Today’s Gospel Reading
Gospel, Luke 4:1-13
Jesus Is Tested In The Wilderness
Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, left the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them he was hungry.
The devil said to him, “If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread.”
Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone.’ ”
The devil led him up to a high place and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world. And he said to him, “I will give you all their authority and splendor; it has been given to me, and I can give it to anyone I want to. If you worship me, it will all be yours.”
Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God and serve him only.’ ”
The devil led him to Jerusalem and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down from here. For it is written: “ ‘He will command his angels concerning you to guard you carefully; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’ ”
Jesus answered, “It is said: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’ ”
When the devil had finished all this tempting, he left him until an opportune time.
What Does Luke Mean?
Satan decided that the time was at hand to make null and void the purpose that God intended by sending his son to earth. He wanted to prevent, at all costs, God’s intent to give to man the ability to gain entrance into the kingdom of heaven by the events that would occur on earth. And Satan viewed these temptations as a means of dividing the trinity.
Now the these three temptations are recorded in both Matthew as well as Luke (and while not exactly recorded, they were hinted at by Mark, as well), which serves to reinforce the significance of these things in what would be God’s plan for His son.
The three temptations given by Satan were:
- “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.”
- “If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down. For it is written: ‘He shall give His angels charge over you,’ and, ‘In their hands they shall bear you up, lest you dash your foot against a stone.’”
- “All these things I will give You if You will fall down and worship me.”
All three are exactly the same things we all face every day. We all too often feed our baser appetites at the expense of our faith. We seek power and standing before we seek God. And in our greed, we seek to have everything and be God ourselves!
But just as Christ refused to bow down to temptation, he proves that He is living His life for His Father, and not Himself….just as we all must if we are to partake of the gift His death has afforded to us!
Deuteronomy 26: 4-10 NIV
The priest shall take the basket from your hands and set it down in front of the altar of the Lord your God. Then you shall declare before the Lord your God: “My father was a wandering Aramean, and he went down into Egypt with a few people and lived there and became a great nation, powerful and numerous. But the Egyptians mistreated us and made us suffer, subjecting us to harsh labor.
Then we cried out to the Lord, the God of our ancestors, and the Lord heard our voice and saw our misery, toil and oppression.
So the Lord brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, with great terror and with signs and wonders.
He brought us to this place and gave us this land, a land flowing with milk and honey; and now I bring the first fruits of the soil that you, Lord, have given me.”
Place the basket before the Lord your God and bow down before him.
Thanks Be To God!
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