Studies in the Gospel of Luke

Unwavering Trust – Meditation of the Studies in the Gospel of Luke

Unwavering Trust – Meditation of the Studies in the Gospel of Luke

One of the most fundamental steps of living into our sonship and daughtership in Christ is to demonstrate the same unwavering trust we see in Jesus in the wilderness by, likewise, determining not to fulfill our own desires (however right or needful) in our own way or in our own time (however easily we might be able to do so), but rather to surrender our lives to his Kingdom, trusting in his provision and timing, and above all His unfailing love.

For He that promised is faithful (Heb 10:23).

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Sons and Daughters of God – Meditation of the Studies in the Gospel of Luke

Sons and Daughters of God – Meditation of the Studies in the Gospel of Luke

There is a sense in which we are all sons and daughters of God, for we are not only made by him, but also made in his image and likeness. This is suggested by Luke’s genealogy and it is good and right to affirm this. However because we are made in God’s image and likeness, we are also made for a deeper, richer sonship (and daughter-ship!) that cannot be a simple fact of nature, nor can it be obtained by our own efforts. It must be obtained through the unmerited gift of grace, by uniting ourselves to Christ and being baptized in to his uncompromising obedience to God manifested in his life, death and resurrection.

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Repentance and Transformation – Meditation of the Studies in the Gospel of Luke

Repentance and Transformation – Meditation of the Studies in the Gospel of Luke

“When men’s thoughts cease to resemble God’s thoughts, their conduct ceases to be godly. This, in a nutshell, is the importance of the New Testament doctrine of repentance: it is a calling of men’s minds to be patterned after God’s, in order that their conduct may be in keeping with his will and that they may participate in his reign.”

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Finding Jesus in the Temple – Meditation of the Studies in the Gospel of Luke

Finding Jesus in the Temple – Meditation of the Studies in the Gospel of Luke

Perhaps this is something that many can relate to today: not understanding why God has allowed certain things to happen, or even why he feels distant in the midst of these situations. No amount of sermons we’ve heard in the past or pithy sayings we’ve read on Facebook seem sufficient for the pain we’re going through right now. And yet through this beautiful vignette do we not only find one who has gone before us and knows such pain, but also the gentle reminder of where we can find the God who seems so distant: in the temple, which Paul reminds us is no longer an earthly structure, but our own bodies—through prayer, fasting and personal care—and, consummately, His Body, that is, the earthly community of His disciples, through whom His Spirit is alive and working. It is as we seek him in such community—through our prayers, our presence, our gifts, and our service, to use the old Methodist phrase—that we will find Him, and find in Him, Life Abundant.

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Suffering, Solidarity and Glory – Meditation of the Studies in the Gospel of Luke

Suffering, Solidarity and Glory – Meditation of the Studies in the Gospel of Luke

This, too, is our mission, for we are all called to be Mary’s: to bear the one who has brought salvation and life to the world through his own suffering and death. We do this not only in the way that we bear our own crosses—in perseverance, supplication, faithfulness and hope—but also in the way that we willingly share in those of others and help them through solidarity and charity. CS Lewis has said that pain is God’s “megaphone to rouse a deaf world.” And we, as disciples of Christ, are called to turn the blaring, grating and indistinct din of pain into the healing balm of Christ’s sacrificial and saving love, through the same solidarity by which he has shown his love for us.

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Poverty and Glory – Meditation in the Studies of Gospel of Luke

Poverty and Glory – Meditation in the Studies of Gospel of Luke

It was into the hands of the simple, the poor, the despised and rejected that God entrusted not only the care of His most precious Son, but also the announcement of the extraordinary news of his birth, despite the fact that their testimony would not have been received (let alone believed) by many.

This is a reality that we all need to take on board, not only for our selves, but also for others. There is no one so simple, so despised that they are not to receive the extraordinary news of God’s love for them and his desire to bring them into a saving relationship with Himself…
Nor are there individuals who are so simple or whose lives are so obscure that they cannot be bearers of Christ in ways that powerfully impact not only the world around them, but also the world at large.

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What’s in a Name? – Studies in Luke 1:57-80

What’s in a Name? – Studies in Luke 1:57-80

There is a reality that goes deeper than every circumstance we face and every situation in which we find ourselves. It is the reality found in Zechariah and Elizabeth’s names, and evoked over and over again in Mary and Zechariah’s songs of praise: that God is good and faithful and he loves us with a steadfast love that doesn’t just function generally, but works intimately and personally in mercy. Wherever you are, whatever situation you find yourself in, hold tight to this truth because it is the greatest reality of all.

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Deepening Our “Yes” – Studies in Luke 1:26-36

Deepening Our “Yes” – Studies in Luke 1:26-36

Mary’s “yes’” to the Lord enabled her to bear the one in whom all men, for all time would find the hope of salvation. What on one level is but a simple act of obedience, is in fact a supreme act of faithfulness to the spread of God’s kingdom here on earth and the paradigm for all of our discipleship and witness since. We are all called to bear Christ in this world—whether it is in our responsibilities to our families (even in the apparently most mundane!), to our job, our friends and our communities—and we do so precisely by saying yes to the Lord and serving him wholeheartedly in every way He has called us. Wherever we are is where He wants us to serve him, right here and right now, trusting that no matter how apparently mundane it may appear, the effects of that faithfulness have eternal value not only for ourselves but for countless others we may never even know.

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Instruments of the Kingdom – Studies in Luke 1:5-25

Instruments of the Kingdom – Studies in Luke 1:5-25

However, we must not imagine that, in being used so powerfully by the Lord, these men and women were merely His instruments, as if their own lives, their own stories and wounds did not matter in the light of the larger purposes of God’s Kingdom. Their lives mattered every bit as much as those whom Jesus was later to heal and deliver in his earthly ministry. They mattered because they, too, were to be the beneficiaries of that ministry; and because it is in healing and deliverance that the fruits of His Kingdom are made known.

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