The Prodigal God is Too Expensive for Us (2019 ETS Annual Meeting Presentation)

I suggest that in Luke 15-16, Jesus weaves teachings related to money with ideas of salvation history. Luke 15-16 is divided into seven labeled units in the ESV. These units are composed of twelve paragraph divisions. The NA28 Greek text breaks Luke 15-16 into eleven paragraph units. The flow of … Continue reading

Luke 23-24

Luke’s Gospel rings with notes that have sounded especially sweet to Gentile ears.  He wrote to a Greek friend, Theophilus (1.1-4); traced Jesus’ genealogy to Adam, not Abraham (cf. Matt 1.2); recorded parables that emphasized Jesus’ heart for outsiders—like tax collectors and sinners (Luke 15); and uniquely portrayed Jesus’ call … Continue reading

Luke 21-22

Luke said that he wanted to write for Theophilus, “in orderly sequence” (1.3), an account of “the events that have been fulfilled among us” (1.1).  Throughout his Gospel, Luke labored to compose a biography of Jesus, inviting the reader to celebrate the arrival of the kingdom of God and the … Continue reading

Luke 19-20

In Luke 9.51-19.41 the author records Jesus’ final trip to Jerusalem.  Along the way, Jesus taught His disciples and the crowds of the kingdom of God.  Luke 19-20 thus climaxes this narrative sequence, revealing the Jesus’ evangelistic heart.  Here Luke described those who received the message of the kingdom against … Continue reading

Luke 17-18

Recording Jesus’ final journey to Jerusalem (9.51-19.41), Luke reported Jesus’ interaction with both the disciples and the Pharisees.  In Jerusalem Jesus would demonstrate finally the reality of the kingdom.  His humble death on the cross would fulfill themes of His teaching in Luke 17-18.  In these chapters, Luke set forth … Continue reading

Luke 15-16

As Jesus’ popularity grew, so did the opposition He received from the contemporary Jewish leadership (cf. 12.1; 14.7-14; 18.9-14).  While He opposed the Pharisees’ selfishness straightway, He also used His debates with them to instruct His disciples in kingdom values, especially financial generosity.  In Luke 15-16, Jesus’ creative teaching methods … Continue reading

Luke 13-14

In Luke 9.51-19.41 the author recounts Jesus’ teaching as He approached Jerusalem for the last time.  Luke provided further evidence that the spiritual leadership of Israel could not understand the signs of the times and the reality of Jesus’ kingdom.  Among other things, their commitment to the Sabbath stood in … Continue reading

Luke 9-10

These two chapters of Luke’s Gospel are arranged to show the initial success of both the twelve and the seventy.  Jesus commissioned these two groups to spread the good news of the kingdom, and while both groups returned with euphoric reports, Jesus tempered their enthusiasm with some straight-talk about kingdom … Continue reading

Luke 7-8

At the outset of his Gospel, Luke told Theophilus that after investigating the matters thoroughly, he set out to write an orderly account of the things that Jesus said and did (1.1-4).  In these chapters Luke emphasized the profundity of Jesus’ messianic words and deeds, and the various responses He … Continue reading

Luke 5-6

Luke’s account of Jesus’ early Galilean ministry establishes Jesus as a uniquely powerful and controversial figure. Luke 5-6 records Jesus’ early dialectics with the Pharisees—concerning especially the forgiveness of sin (cf. Matt 9.1-8//Mark 2.3-12) and His Lordship over the Sabbath (cf. Matt 12.1-14//Mark 2.23-3.6)—and the Sermon on the Mount (cf. … Continue reading

Luke 3-4

Luke opened his Gospel in a scholarly fashion.  Writing to Theophilus he said: “Many have undertaken to compile a narrative about the events that have been fulfilled among us, just as the original eyewitnesses and servants of the word handed them down to us.  It also seemed good to me, … Continue reading

Luke 1-2

Like Matthew’s Gospel, the initial scenes of Luke are steeped in Old Testament motifs.  Luke, known as a physician (Col 4.14), was also an avid historian and scholar.  He composed an account of the life of Jesus only after interacting with the primary-source material of Jewish history and eye-witness accounts … Continue reading