Category Archives: Luke

Luke 24:46-53; Acts 1:1-8 — The power to change the world

And so with today’s blog, we exit the gospels and enter the book of Acts. I’m not sure if it ever occurred to me that what Luke referenced in Acts 1:4 was probably the same event that he talked about … Continue reading

Posted in Acts, Gospels, Luke | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 24:36-49; John 20:19-23 — Filled and sent out

It seems like there was quite a bit of confusion and disbelief among the 11 and the others gathered in the upper room that Sunday.  Here was Mary, the women, the two followers of Jesus, and Peter himself saying that … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, John, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 24:13-35 — Slow to believe

This appears to be the third or fourth appearance of Jesus after his resurrection, depending on when Jesus showed himself to Peter. And here we see two followers of Jesus walking down to Emmaus, which was perhaps their hometown.  And as … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 28:1-20; Mark 16:1-8; Luke 24:1-12; John 20:1-18 — The One who is always with us

A couple of notes on the resurrection.  I think I will be cutting out Mark 16:9-20 from my commentary since it is considered by most scholars to not be in the original text.  It was apparently added on to Mark … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, John, Luke, Mark, Matthew | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 27:32-61; Mark 15:24-47; Luke 23:32-56; John 19:18-42 — That scripture would be fulfilled

One thing that becomes crystal clear as we look at these passages is that Christ’s death was no accident.  It was no mistake on the part of God.  Rather, he had planned it from the beginning of time for our … Continue reading

Posted in John, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 27:45-54; Mark 15:33-39; Luke 23:44-49; John 19:28-30 — Paid in full

If there is one thing I hate to do, it’s pay taxes.  Every year, I have to go down to the tax office to declare my income, and then a month later, I collect my refund…only to have to give … Continue reading

Posted in John, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 27:38, 44; Mark 15:27, 32; Luke 23:32-33, 39-43; John 19:18 — Railing at God, humbling ourselves before him

This is one of the most famous stories from the cross.  Along with Jesus, two robbers were crucified by his side.  And at first, both mocked him.  In the ESV, it says One of the criminals who were hanged railed … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, John, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Luke 23:34 — Forgive them

Forgiveness is one of the most difficult things people struggle with.  The reason is that the hurts we experience go straight to the depths of our hearts.  And as deep as our wounds go, they can be very difficult to heal. … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 27:33-37; Mark 15:22-26; Luke 23:38; John 19:18-22 — What has been written

The interaction between Pilate and the chief priests is very interesting.  Pilate put up the “charge” against Jesus, calling him the “King of the Jews.” The priests immediately went up to Pilate, asking him to change it to, “He claimed … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, John, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Luke 23:27-31 — The heart of Jesus

If there is one thing that always astonishes me, it’s the heart of Jesus.  And it is as he goes to his death, that we see the compassion that caused him go to the cross in the first place. On … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Leave a comment

Matthew 27:31-32; Mark 15:20-21; Luke 23:26; John 19:16-17 — If we were forced to bear the cross Christ bore

We know very little of this man of Cyrene, this Simon.  It is conjectured that he is the father of the Rufus mentioned in Romans 16:13, the only other Rufus mentioned in the Bible. In all probability, he was a … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Luke 23:7-12 — Those to whom Jesus has nothing to say

We now see in this passage Herod’s response to Jesus.  Perhaps, though, it would be better to call it Jesus’ response to Herod. This was the same Herod that had beheaded John the Baptist, and had wondered if Jesus was … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 27:11-26; Mark 15:1-15; Luke 23:1-25; John 18-19 — When we have nothing to stand on

I will start by saying that it’s a bit hard to harmonize these passages.  Here’s how I see it, but I encourage you to look at it yourself, and come to your own conclusions. The priests and council members bring … Continue reading

Posted in John, Luke, Mark, Matthew | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 26:57-68; Mark 14:53-65; Luke 22:63-71 — The ultimate question

The trial of Jesus was an atrocity on many levels.  Among them, the priests and Sanhedrin knew Jesus was innocent.  Yet because of their jealousy and hatred of Jesus, they were desperate to find a reason to kill him. Jewish … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 26:47-56; Mark 14:43-52; Luke 22:47-53; John 18:1-12 — Power and authority, mercy and grace

In this passage, there are three things I see in Jesus. 1.  His power and authority.  Though surrounded by his enemies, he was in total command of the situation.  Standing to face his enemies, he asked them, “Who are you … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, John, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 26:36-46; Mark 14:32-42; Luke 22:39-46 — When my will is not God’s will

There are times in our lives when we go through trials and suffering.  It may be an illness.  It may be family troubles because of our Christian faith.  It may be problems in our ministry.  And so we pray for … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 26:36-46; Mark 14:32-42; Luke 22:39-46; John 18:1 — Weak

Nobody ever said Satan fights fair.  And he doesn’t.  When he sees us in our weakness, whether it be physically or emotionally, he will attack. You see this in these passages.  When Jesus and his disciples arrived at the Garden … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, John, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Luke 22:35-38 — Preparing to face a hostile world

As Jesus led his disciples out of the upper room, he asked them, When I sent you without purse, bag or sandals, did you lack anything?  (35) This is referring to the two times he sent out the disciples to preach … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 26:31-35; Mark 14:27-31; Luke 22:31-34; John 13:36-38 — A God who knows our weakness, and accepts us anyway

When Jesus told the disciples that he was leaving for a place they could not follow, it must have really troubled them.  He was their teacher, and they couldn’t imagine life without him. As usual, it was Peter who spoke … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, John, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 26:26-29; Mark 14:22-26; Luke 22:14-20 — Pictures of the cross

The Old Testament is rich with pictures of Christ.  And in this passage, we see the fulfillment of them in Christ. The disciples were having the Passover meal, and after the first cup of wine, Jesus pulled out a piece … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 26:20-25; Mark 14:17-21; Luke 22:21-23; John 13:18-30 — Betrayal

As I’ve mentioned before, harmonizing these passages is a little tough.  One question is whether Judas participated in the first communion.  Luke seems to imply so, while the other gospel writers seem to say Judas didn’t.  It’s just my opinion, … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, John, Luke, Mark, Matthew | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Luke 22:24-30; John 13:1-17 — True leadership

Trying to harmonize the gospel accounts at this point is a little sticky.  I get the impression that things were not always told in chronological order and that there were little asides thrown in.  This passage in Luke, in my … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, John, Luke | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 26:1-19; Mark 14:12-16; Luke 22:7-13 — Room for the master

Jesus’ final public appearances (of his own volition, anyway) are now over.  And he now knows that the time of his arrest and crucifixion is close at hand.  But before that happens, Jesus prepares to have one last meal with his … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 24:36-51; Mark 13:32-37; Luke 21:34-36 — Being ready whenever

There are a lot of people concerned about when Jesus will return.  And over the years, many people have predicted when he will come back.  I remember back in my high school days, a book came out called, “88 reasons … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 24; Mark 13; Luke 21:5-38 — Until our Lord returns

The Lord talks a lot about the events that will occur before he returns.  And the thing that you get from all he says is that things will get worse before he returns.  A lot worse.  There will be wars, … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 24:1-35; Mark 13:1-31; Luke 21:5-33 — A sign of things to come

I mentioned in my last blog that this is one of the more difficult passages in scripture, and part of the difficulty comes in the harmonizing of it.  Jesus had just told the disciples that the temple was going to … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 24:1-2; Mark 13:1-2; Luke 21:5-6 — When our temple becomes corrupt

We now come to one of the more difficult passages in scripture.  I want to say straight off that if you’re hoping to get all the answers for what all this means, I don’t have them.  There are other people … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Mark 12:41-44; Luke 21:1-4 — What God is looking for

After the blistering criticism Jesus gave the Pharisees, he settled back, and quietly started to watch the people walking past the place where offerings were put. A number of rich people walked past, and with great ceremony dumped in large … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 23:1-12; Mark 12:38-40; Luke 20:45-47 — A wrong view of leadership

What is leadership?  What is leadership not? In a scathing criticism of the Pharisees and teachers of the law, Jesus gives us insight into what true leadership is about. He first warned the disciples and the crowds, The teachers of … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 22:41-46; Mark 12:35-37; Luke 20:41-44 — Son of David, Son of God

Perhaps tiring of the hypocrisy of those questioning him, Jesus posed his own question to them that ultimately shut them up.  He said, What do you think about the Christ?  Whose son is he?  (Matthew 22:42a) This was an easy … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 22:23-33; Mark 12:18-27; Luke 20:27-40 — When we fail to understand the scriptures and the power of God

There’s a children’s song that humorously describes the Sadducees.  It says, “I don’t wanna be a Sadducee, ’cause a Sadducee is ‘sad, you see?’” Yes, I know, a very bad joke.  🙂 Nevertheless, they were a sad bunch of people … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 22:15-22; Mark 12:13-17; Luke 20:20-26 — Giving to God what is his

I hate paying taxes.  When March rolls around (tax time in Japan), it’s not so bad in that I actually get money back (after the pain of filling out all the tax forms).  But when June rolls around, that’s when … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 21:33-46; Mark 12:1-12; Luke 20:9-19 — When we reject the one on whom all things rest

After nailing the leaders for their unbelief, he then told a parable warning them of what would happen if they didn’t repent. And the start of it is very similar to Isaiah 5 in which God describes a vineyard that … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 21:23-32; Mark 11:27-33; Luke 20:1-8 — When you’re too proud to admit you’re wrong

It’s hard to admit when we’re wrong.  I know I struggle with it at times.  The reason?  Pride.  It takes a great deal of humility to simply say, “I was wrong.” But if we want relationships that last, relationships with others … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Leave a comment

Matthew 21:12-22; Mark 11:11-25; Luke 19:45-48 — Fruitless

This is a story where it is a little hard to understand the actions of Jesus.  Why would he curse a tree that wasn’t bearing fruit though it was not even the season for it? There does tend to be … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 21:1-11; Mark 11:1-11; Luke 19:28-44; John 12:12-19 — What would bring us peace

Lots going on in these passages, and as you look at all four gospels, you really get an idea of the frenzy going on due to Jesus’ entrance in Jerusalem.  People are shouting, Hosanna to the Son of David!”  “Blessed is … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, John, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 21:1-11; Mark 11:1-11; Luke 19:28-40; John 12:12-16 — The Lord needs it

We have now reached the home stretch of the life of Jesus, his final week. As I read this passage, one phrase struck me.  Jesus was instructing his disciples to do something very unusual, to go into the village, and … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, John, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 19:11-28 — If we are determined to reject Christ

There is another point to this story that Jesus told that we didn’t get to touch on yesterday. It says in verses 12-15, A man of noble birth went to a distant country to have himself appointed king and then … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 19:11-27 — While we are waiting

It says that Jesus told this next parable because, He was near Jerusalem and the people thought that the kingdom of God was going to appear at once.  (11) In other words, there was an idea that he wanted to dispel … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Luke 19:1-10 — Because of us

This is a very famous story in the Bible, and it’s one I’ve heard (and sang) since I was a kid.  But as I looked at it today, verse 3 struck me. [Zacchaeus] wanted to see who Jesus was, but … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 20-29-34; Mark 10:46-52; Luke 18:35-43 — Looking beyond ourselves

As I read the story of Bartimaeus and his friend, what strikes me is the incredible compassion and love Jesus had for people. Here Jesus is, headed for the cross, and his closest friends, despite all he’s told him, still … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 20:17-19; Mark 10:32-34; Luke 18:31-34 — Failing to see what is clear

As I look at this particular story, it is the last phrase in Luke’s account that strikes me. The disciples did not understand any of this.  Its meaning was hidden from them, and they did not know what he was … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 19:27-30; Mark 10:28-31; Luke 18:28-30 — Is it worth it?

Is it really worth it to follow Christ?  That was the question the rich young ruler had to face.  Unfortunately, he decided that it wasn’t. Peter too asked himself the same question.  “I’ve given up everything to follow after Jesus. … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 19:16-26; Mark 10:17-27, Luke 18:18-27 — The impossibility of salvation

My religion professor in university brought up this story when talking about Christianity.  His point?  “If you want eternal life, you have to sell everything you have.” Which shows the fallacy of not looking at a scripture in its context, … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 19:13-15; Mark 10:13-16; Luke 18:15-17 — Like a child

When Jesus rebuked his disciples for trying to chase the children away, he said to them, Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.  I tell … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 19:13-15; Mark 10:13-16; Luke 18:15-17 — The God of the “insignificant”

As a father, I really love my daughter, but I have to admit there are times when she can be annoying.  Particularly when I’m trying to do something, sometimes important, sometimes not, and she desperately wants my attention. It’s so … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 18:9-14 — Remembering our need for grace

It’s amazing how though times change, some things never do.  And in this passage, we see an example of this.  Luke writes, To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everyone else, Jesus told this … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Luke 18:1-8 — Keeping the faith through times of trial

It would be easy from looking at just the first verse to think that Jesus’ point is simply that we should keep praying and not give up when God seems slow to answer. This is most certainly true, but the … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Luke 17:20-37 — A sudden but certain judgment

After addressing the Pharisees on God’s kingdom, Jesus turns to his disciples with a word of warning. He told them that there would be times of trouble when they would long for his coming, and because of that, it would … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 17:20-21 — Seeing God’s kingdom

Well, I’m back from vacation.  And straight into one of the more difficult passages to interpret. The Pharisees came to Jesus asking when God’s kingdom would come.  I’m not sure what they meant by that, but perhaps they were saying, … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 17:11-19 — Grateful

Just a blogging note:  this will probably be my last blog for the next few days as I will probably be computerless over the last few days of my vacation. In this passage, we see ten lepers hanging out together … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 11:7-10 — Walking by the light

When Jesus made the decision to go back to Judea to see Lazarus, his disciples objected, saying, But Rabbi…a short while ago the Jews tried to stone you, and yet you are going back there?  (8) Jesus’ answer is very striking. … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 11:1-45 — That we might believe

This is one of the most famous miracles Jesus performed, and I’ve spoken on it at church more than once.  But as I read it through this time, these words strike me: So that you may believe.   (15) We … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 17:7-10 — Our attitude in service

We all like a pat on the back.  A “Well done” after we do something.  But is that why we serve?  For the praise of others?  For the praise of God even? Do we feel underappreciated when it doesn’t come? … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 17:3-6 — Forgiveness

As I was reading this passage, something new struck me as I was reading the ESV. Jesus is, of course, talking about forgiveness here.  He said, If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him.  (3 — … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 17:1-3 — Causing others to fall

Just a quick note:  I’m currently on vacation back home in Hawaii.  So, I may or may not be blogging every day as usual.  We’ll see how things fall out. Speaking of falling, Jesus says here, Things that cause people … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 16:19-31 — When we fail to prepare

This is one of the most graphic depictions of the afterlife, probably because it’s the most personal.  In particular, it is a graphic picture of what hell will be like. Many people think that this was an actual incident, the … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Luke 16:15-18 — Justifying ourselves

One major problem of the Pharisees was that they were so self-righteous.  They were so proud of keeping every little rule there was that they couldn’t see the sin that was so obviously there in their lives.  And when their … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 16:13-15 — Who or what we serve

The god of Money is very big in our society.  Many people long for it.  They work for it.  They even give their lives for it.  But Jesus tells us here, No servant can serve two masters.  Either he will … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Luke 16:10-12 — Being faithful

While Jesus praised the dishonest manager in his story for at least planning for his future, he also criticized him, saying, Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Luke 16:1-9 — Securing our future

Everyone desires security for their future.  But how many of us really plan for it?  Not just in terms of life here on earth, but in terms of eternity? This story Jesus tells is a very unusual one, because he … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Luke 15:11-24 — The extravagance of God’s grace

This is perhaps the most famous of Jesus’ parables in the Gospels.  Yet it must have been utterly shocking to the Pharisees. For here in this story was just the type of person they despised.  Here was a young man, … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 15:1-10 — Seeking the lost? Condemning the lost?

In this passage, we see the one big difference between Jesus and the Pharisees.  And it is unfortunately one of the big differences between God and a lot of people that call themselves Christians today.  The Pharisees condemned those who … Continue reading

Posted in Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Luke 14:25-35 — Counting the cost

As the large crowds followed Jesus, I wonder if Jesus was searching their hearts as to why they were following him? Were they following him because of the miracles?  Because of his great teachings?  Or was it truly because they … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 14:15-24 — Excuses

In warning the Pharisees not to just assume they will enter the kingdom, Jesus, as he often did, told a parable. It was a story of how a man invited people to a great banquet.  In those days, they didn’t … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Leave a comment

Luke 14:15-24 — When we reject Jesus

After Jesus mentioned how God would reward the generous in the resurrection of the righteous, one of the guests at the dinner said, Blessed is the man who will eat at the feast in the kingdom of God.  (15) This man … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Luke 14:12-14 — Giving

As Jesus looked around the room, I wonder what kind of people he saw?  A lot of people were invited to this dinner, and I would guess that he was the only one who was not considered at least moderately … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 14:7-12 — Humility

In this passage, we see a cultural issue that we don’t really see so often in Western culture, if at all.  Jesus noticed at the meal he was at, that people were jockeying for the best seat.  Generally, the person … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 14:1-6 — Arguing people into belief

Jesus was not only a master teacher, he was a master debater.  We see it here, when once again he confronts the Pharisees with the “legality” of healing someone on the Sabbath. The thing that strikes me here is the … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Luke 13:33-35 — What God longs to do, what he won’t do, what he can’t do

This is one of the more poignant portions of scripture.  After dealing with the Pharisees, Jesus weeps, O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Luke 13:31-33 — Refusing to give in to fear

It is very easy to tell other people not to be afraid, it’s another thing to live it.  Yet, that is exactly what Jesus did. Some Pharisees came up to him saying, Leave this place and go somewhere else.  Herod wants … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Leave a comment

Luke 13:22-30 — Before it’s too late

None of us like to think about hell.  And none of us like the idea that anyone is going to hell.  We’d like to think that everyone (or almost everyone) will go to heaven someday. Perhaps that’s the feeling this … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 13:20-28 — The need to be watchful

I wrote on this passage when we came across it in Matthew (the same illustration is used twice, though probably on different occasions). The more I look at it, however, I wonder if perhaps Jesus didn’t mean something else than … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Luke 13:10-17 — To set people free

Old ways of thinking die hard.  You’d think that by now, the Jewish leaders would start to understand that healing on the Sabbath was not wrong.  They had tried time and again to argue the point with Jesus, and time … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Luke 13:1-9 — Taking a hard look at ourselves

I suppose it’s only natural that after Jesus talked about the need for being reconciled to God before the coming judgment, that someone would bring up an incident that had just happened.  Apparently, the Roman governor Pontius Pilate had just … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Luke 12:54-59 — Reconciling ourselves with God

It’s been interesting going through the gospels and looking at the teachings of Jesus, because as I’ve mentioned before, Jesus often repeats what he says, but in different contexts. In the Sermon on the Mount, he admonished the people to … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Luke 12:49-53 — The fire of the gospel

Fire can be a terrifying thing, especially in a forest.  The speed with which it can spread and the damage it can cause can be incredible.  But fire can also do positive things for a forest. Among other things, fire … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Leave a comment

Luke 12:35-48 — Being ready

Jesus closes up his warnings against hypocrisy, greed, and desiring the things of this world with one last admonition.  Be ready for his return. He told his disciples, Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning, like men waiting … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Leave a comment

Luke 12:13-34 — What this life is all about

What is this life all about? So many people wander about lost because they don’t know.  Often times they search for meaning in money, possessions, and things. That’s what the man who asked Jesus to judge between he and his … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Luke 12:13-21 — When our time comes

Our life is fragile.  And in an instant, it can be taken from us.  Whether it be in a car accident, an earthquake, or whatever it may be. And on that day, when we see God, what will he say … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 12:1-8 — Undercover Christian

I remember hearing a comedy sketch one time about an “undercover Christian.”  Someone for whom his faith was “a personal thing.”  Something he kept to himself. But Jesus has another word for an undercover Christian.  A hypocrite.  An actor.  Someone who … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Luke 12:4-7 — Fear, fear not

Just a brief note concerning this blog:  for the teachings of Jesus, if he repeated things (as he often did), I may or may not comment on the things he repeated, depending on if God brings something new to light … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Leave a comment

Luke 12:1-3 — Hypocrisy

It’s interesting to me how Jesus used the same illustrations to bring out different points.  This passage is an example. Earlier, when he had sent his twelve disciples out, he talked about how everything concealed would be revealed, and how … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 11:47-54 — When actions speak louder than words

One of the things that the teachers of the law and the Pharisees did was pay lip service to the prophets.  They even built tombs to honor them, basically saying, “We really respect these guys.  If it had been us, … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 11:45-46 — The problem with legalism

From blasting the Pharisees, Jesus turned to the teachers of the law.  Why? Jesus told them, And you experts in the law, woe to you, because you load people down with burdens they can hardly carry, and you yourselves will … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Luke 11:37-44 — What’s in the heart

In this passage, Jesus give a blistering criticism of the Pharisees.  And basically what it came down to was what was in their hearts. The Pharisees looked so good on the outside.  They were so careful to keep the law. … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Luke 10:38-42 — What Jesus really wants

This is another one of my favorite stories, I suppose because it shows us something that’s easy to forget. Martha opens up her home to Jesus, but then promptly neglects him.  Why?  Because she’s too busy trying to “serve” him. … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Luke 10:25-37 — Going beyond the head knowledge

As I look at this passage, there is one more thing that strikes me. This is a story about three people that knew God’s word very well.  One, of course, was real (the expert in the law), and two were … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Luke 10:25-37 — To love in deed and truth

As I read this passage, the words of John spring to mind when he said, Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth.  (I John 3:18) We see this in the “Good Samaritan.” … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 10:1-24 — Ask…then go!

I hope you all enjoyed the Japanese lesson!  🙂 Sorry about that, actually.  I have a Japanese version of this blog, and it accidentally got posted here. At any rate, we see Jesus not only sending out the 12 disciples, … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

John 7:10; Luke 9:51-56 — A time for judgment, a time for mercy

I mentioned in the last blog that there will be people that hate us because of the truth that we represent. I also said it’s important how consider how we say it, and the spirit with which we talk to … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, John, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 8:19-22; Luke 9:57-62 — To follow Christ

What does it mean to follow Christ? That’s what three people found out, as they either approached Jesus or were called by him to be his disciples. A teacher of the law came up to him first, and said, Teacher, I … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Mark 9:38-41; Luke 9:49-50 — Pride in ministry

As Jesus taught his disciples about what it meant to be great in God’s kingdom, it must have caused some unease in their hearts.  Not only because of how they had been treating each other, but because of how they … Continue reading

Posted in Luke, Mark | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 18:1-9; Mark 9:33-37; Luke 9:46-48 — The greatest

I think something that gives me hope as I look at how much I have yet to grow as a Christian, is to look at Jesus’ disciples, and how much patience Jesus had to have with them. One day, as … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Leave a comment

Matthew 17:22-23; Mark 9:30-32; Luke 9:43-45 — Afraid to ask

In this passage, we see the second time in which Jesus speaks plainly to his disciples about what was going to happen to him in Jerusalem.  He couldn’t have been more clear. He said, “Listen carefully to what I am … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 17:14-20; Mark 9:14-29; Luke 9:37-43 — Where is our faith?

Where is my faith? That’s a question I have to ask myself far too often in the sense of, “Why don’t I trust God more?” But it’s also a question I need to ask myself in terms of “Where am … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 17:1-13; Mark 9:2-13; Luke 9:28-36 — Listen to Him!

This is one of the more interesting passages in the Gospels, and it comes at an interesting time. Jesus has just shattered his disciples’ ideas of what Messiah is supposed to be, and they’re wondering what in the world does … Continue reading

Posted in Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 16:24-28; Mark 8:34-9:1; Luke 9:23-27 — What’s really important

What are you living for?  What are you seeking in life? Comfort?  Money?  Things? Here Jesus challenges us to really consider our priorities.  He told his disciples and would-be disciples something really difficult. If anyone would come after me, he … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 16:21-23; Mark 8:31-33; Luke 9:22 — A stumbling block to Christ

A lot of times we hear how we shouldn’t be stumbling blocks to other Christians.  And of course, we often hear about how Christ is a stumbling block to those who reject him. But how often are we stumbling blocks to Christ, … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Leave a comment

Matthew 16:13-16, 20; Mark 8:27-30; Luke 9:18-21 — The most important question

By now, Jesus was about halfway through his ministry, and was starting to look toward the cross.  But as he did, he wanted his disciples to really think about who he was.  Was he just a prophet?  Was he just … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 14:13-21; Mark 6:30-44; Luke 9:10-17; John 6:5-13 — Though we may have little…

I have probably read or heard this passage a billion times, so it’s always exciting when God gives me a new way of looking at a passage. Jesus’ disciples had just come back from their mission trip, and were probably … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, John, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Leave a comment

Matthew 14:1-12; Mark 6:14-29; Luke 9:7-9 — I respect you, but…

As I look at this passage, Herod is a puzzle to me.  He apparently wasn’t happy with John the Baptist when John condemned him for taking his (that is, Herod’s) brother’s wife and marrying her.  It’s possible he would never have done … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 10-11:1; Mark 6:6-13, 30; Luke 9:1-6, 10 — Discipleship: The spiritual and the practical

Happy Resurrection Sunday people west of Japan!  🙂  I hope you enjoy yours as much as I did mine.  I’m now back blogging after a short one day break. Anyway, as I look at how Jesus discipled his men, he … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 10:1-4; Mark 6:6-7; Luke 9:1-2 — A tare in the wheatfield

As I look at this passage, for some reason, Judas sticks out to me.  Jesus called his 12 disciples to go out and minister to the people of Israel.  Look at what he did.  He gave them the authority to … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 9:18-26; Mark 5:21-43; Luke 8:41-56 — The God who cleanses and raises the dead

When you look throughout the Old Testament, particularly the law of Moses, you see the concept of “clean” and “unclean” a lot.  Namely, things that the Jews were to avoid and things Jews were allowed to come into contact with. … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 8:28-34; Mark 5:1-20; Luke 8:26-39 — Set free

A very bizarre story to say the least.  Here, Jesus and his disciples come to the other side of the lake following the storm, and when they do, they immediately come across two demon possessed men.  (One wonders why only … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 8:23-27; Mark 4:35-41; Luke 8:22-25 — Our faith

I look at Jesus’ words, “O you of little faith,” and I can’t help but think that if he were to see me now, he would say the same thing.  “O Bruce, why do you have so little faith?” Think … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew | Leave a comment

Matthew 13:31-32; Mark 4:30-32; Luke 13:18-19 — Starting small

I love the vividness of the pictures Jesus paints as he tells stories. As he talks about God’s kingdom, he talks about how the mustard seed, though it is extremely small, grows into tree in which birds can find shade … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 13:1-23; Mark 4:1-20; Luke 8:1-15 — Planting the seed

As I looked back on the last blog, there was one last point that occurred to me that I want to put here. So often, I think of the farmer as Jesus.  But I think it’s equally if not even … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 13:1-23; Mark 4:1-20; Luke 8:1-15 — The state of our hearts

This is the first full on parable we hear from Jesus, although he did give numerous illustrations to explain his points on previous occasions. Here he gives a picture of a farmer scattering his seed along the ground.  It wasn’t, … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 13:1-23; Mark 4:1-25; Luke 8:1-18 — Eyes to see, ears to hear

One of Jesus’ favorite phrases was, He who has ears to hear, let him hear.  (Luke 8:8) You see this admonition in the gospels, and you also see it in Revelation. What did Jesus mean? When Jesus told his parables, … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Luke 11:27-28 — To find blessing

Everyone wants to find blessing in their lives from God.  But how do we find blessing? As Jesus was speaking to the crowd, a woman called out, Blessed is the mother who gave you birth and nursed you.  (27) But … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 12:38-45; Luke 11:24-36 — When we refuse to invite the Spirit in

With Jesus condemning the Pharisees for saying that he was casting out demons by Satan’s power, the Pharisees then demanded a sign from heaven to prove he was doing it by God’s power.  Of course, even had he done so, … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 12:22-32; Mark 3:22-30; Luke 11:17-23 — The danger of hardening our hearts

In this passage, we see another confrontation between the Pharisees and Jesus.  A blind and mute man was brought to Jesus, apparently because of demon possession.  Jesus cast out the demon, and immediately, the man could talk and see. Everyone … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Leave a comment

Luke 8:1-3 — From blessed to blessing

This is a passage that’s very short, but teaches a very important lesson.  We see Jesus here going out from town to town, preaching the gospel.  And along with his disciples, we see three women, Mary Magdalene, the wife of … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Luke 7:36-50 — Where’s your love?

As I look at this passage, I suppose the question I ask myself is, “How much do I really love Jesus?” We see in this passage two people.  One was a woman who lived a sinful life.  What she did, … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 11:16-19; Luke 7:31-35 — Trying to please everyone

There is an old saying, “You can please some of the people some of the time, but you can’t please all of the people all of the time.” This was true even for the Son of God.  Jesus was perfect.  … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 11:7-15; Luke 7:24-30 — Rejecting God’s purpose for us

We were made for a purpose.  God’s purpose.  What is that purpose?  First and foremost, a relationship with him.  Second, a relationship with those he has put around us.  To touch them and to be touched by them.  And finally, … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Matthew 11:1-6; Luke 17:18-24 — Struggling with doubt

It’s nice to know that the “heroes” of the Bible had struggles too.  That they had fears.  That they had doubts. I’m sure that’s exactly what John the Baptist was going through in prison.  He had been doing a great … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Luke 7:11-17 — The God who has come, the God who is near

“Where is God?” In the midst of tragedy, people often ask this question.  I’m sure the widow in this story asked the same.  Her husband had already died, and now her only son was gone.  Not only were these the … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 8:5-13; Luke 7:1-10 — Grace and faith

As I look at these two passages, there are distinct points that I gather from each account. In the Lukan account, we find that when the Roman centurion asked for Jesus help, he got the support of the Jewish elders … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew, New Testament | Leave a comment

Matthew 7:24-27; Luke 6:46-49 — What we build our lives on

And so we come to the end of the Sermons on the Mount and the Plain. Both end the same way, with a challenge.  Essentially, Jesus sums it up by saying, Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Luke 6:43-45 — What is in your heart

One thing that I notice about Jesus is that while he will repeat illustrations, he’ll apply it to different situations.  In Matthew, we see him apply the idea of a good tree bearing good fruit and a bad tree bearing … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 7:12; Luke 6:31 — Doing good, not just avoiding evil

I find the placement of the “Golden Rule” a little jarring in Matthew.  It doesn’t seem to quite fit, particularly with the “Therefore” at the beginning of it.  I suppose it’s pointing back to the totality of Jesus’ message up … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 7:7-11; Luke 11:1-13 — The Father who gives good gifts…generously

In America, there are some Bible teachers that say that if you want something from God, just claim it in Jesus name, and he has to give it to you. For a lot of these people, God is like their … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 7:3-5; Luke 6:39-42 — Hypocritical judging

One of my favorite comedy groups when I was growing up was Isaac Air Freight.  (Does anyone still remember them?)  They did a lot of Christian comedy sketches, and one that’s always stuck with me was one called “Final Minutes” … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 7:1-2; Luke 6:36-38 — When we judge others

It is so easy to judge others for their shortcomings.  To rail on them for their character or their deeds.  It’s especially easy to do so when they’ve hurt us. I think it’s very interesting that in the Lucan account, … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 6:25-33; Luke 12:22-34 — Worry

This is one of those passages that I know in my head, but I don’t know if it has truly sunk into my heart.  In fact, I’m pretty sure it hasn’t. I know because I still worry about stuff, most … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 6:19-24; Luke 11:34-35 — Setting our sights

I talked briefly yesterday about how if we set our sights on the sins we want to avoid, saying constantly to ourselves “I have to stay away from this,” we are actually more likely to fall to temptation.  That a … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 6:13; Luke 11:4 — A daily spiritual battle

Every day, we are fighting a spiritual battle.  That’s why Jesus instructed us to pray, And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.  (Matthew 6:13) We’re living in an evil world, in which the prince … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 6:12, 14-15; Luke 11:4 — Not an option

This is one of the hardest passages in scripture for many people to deal with.  Jesus teaches us to pray, Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors…For if you forgive men when they sin against you, … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew, New Testament | Leave a comment

Matthew 6:11; Luke 11:3 — Praying for our needs

One of the most amazing things to me is that the God of this whole universe cares about me, even the simple and perhaps mundane things.  Yet he does.  And so Jesus tells us to pray, Give us today our … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 6:10; 11:2 — His Kingdom, His Will

I was in a quandary this morning.  I was asked in for an interview for a job that would be higher paying and have better benefits than the one I have now.  Whether I’ll get it or not, I don’t … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 6:9; Luke 11:2 — The one who is worthy of our honor

Well, I have a praise report before I start this blog.  After 2 months of fighting my computer, I finally figured out the problem.  A corrupted hard drive.  So with my new hard drive in, hopefully all my problems are … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 6:9; Luke 11:1-2 — Our Father

I suppose I could breeze through the Lord’s prayer, but I just felt it might be good to take it a line at a time. In these passages, Jesus teaches us how to address God.  In Matthew, he says, “Our … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Matthew 5:43-48 ; Luke 6:27-36 — Perfect in love, perfect in mercy

As Christians, we often come across verse 48 in Matthew 5 where Jesus says, Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. The context of it is very interesting.  Certainly we are to strive for holiness in our lives, … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew, New Testament | Leave a comment

Matthew 5:38-42; Luke 6:29-30 — But it’s not fair

There is something in all of us, I think, that screams for fairness.  And if something happens that we feel isn’t fair, we scream against it.  But is that the best response? These few verses go against every instinct we … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Matthew 5:10-12; Luke 6: 22-23 — Under fire

Nobody likes to be persecuted.  Nobody likes to be disliked.  In an ideal world, everyone would like you.  But this isn’t an ideal world.  It’s a world that has been corrupted by sin.  And because of that, people’s minds have … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Luke 6:24-26 — The problem with self-satisfaction

After Jesus talked about God’s blessings on those who were poor, he turned his attention on those who were rich and self-satisfied, saying, But woe to you who are rich, for you have already received your comfort.  Woe to you … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Luke 6:17-21 — Good news

There seems to be some dispute as to whether the teachings from the Sermon on the Mount recorded in Matthew and the teachings from the Sermon on the Plain in Luke were actually the same message or not.  Some think … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 12:15-21; Mark 3:7-19, Luke 6:12-16 — Called to be with him, called to go out

In these passages, we see the increasing popularity of Jesus, and perhaps it was because of these increasingly great crowds and their needs that Jesus decided to choose 12 people as his trained disciples. As a man, Jesus was limited … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 4:18-22; Mark 1:16-20; Luke 5:1-11 — Called to follow

I do have to back up in time a bit.  I just noticed I missed some crucial passages, namely where Jesus first calls the fishermen to follow him.  (I’m sure this won’t be the last time I skip something by … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 12:9-14; Mark 3:1-6; Luke 6:6-11 — What grieves Jesus

This is one of those stories where each of the gospels gives us a little piece of the puzzle to what happened.  Here’s my take on the whole story taking into account each of the stories. Jesus was in the … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 12:1-8; Mark 2:23-28; Luke 6:1-5 — Condemning the innocent

We have already seen in John the problems the religious leaders had with Jesus for “breaking” the Sabbath.  Actually, all he did was break the rules that they had added to God’s original commandment to keep the Sabbath. Here again, … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Leave a comment

Matthew 9:14-17; Mark 2:18-22; Luke 5:33-39 — For God to use you

One thing that the religious leaders always seemed to be trying to do was to pit John the Baptist versus Jesus.  And John’s disciples fell for it every time.  First, these leaders pointed out to John’s disciples that Jesus was … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 9:10-13; Mark 2:15-17; Luke 5:29-32 — Mercy-givers

Here we see a big difference between Jesus and the religious leaders of the day.  A heart of mercy. Matthew was so excited to be called by Jesus, that he immediately invited Jesus to a great banquet with him and … Continue reading

Posted in Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 9:9; Mark 2:13-14; Luke 5:27-28 — Never beyond redemption

I love these passages because it teaches us one thing.  We’re never so far gone that God’s love can’t reach us. One day, Jesus was walking past the tax collecting booth of a man named Matthew.  I kind of wonder … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 9:2-8; Mark 2:1-12; Luke 5:18-26 — The power to forgive

Who was this Jesus?  Just a great religious teacher?  A good, moral man?  A miracle worker?  Or something more? From this passage, we can see that Jesus was something much more.  Jesus was back in Capernaum where he had made … Continue reading

Posted in Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Matthew 8:2-4; Mark 1:40-45; Luke 5:12-16 — The One who cleanses

I love the compassion of Jesus that we see in this passage.  A man covered with leprosy came to Jesus, begging him, Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.  (Matthew 8:2) Being leprous back in those days … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Matthew 4:23-25; Mark 1:35-39; Luke 4:42-44 — Recharging, refocusing

When Jesus started his ministry, he went all out, touching as many people as he could, spending the whole day doing his Father’s will. But one thing that he never did was burn out.  I’ve been through burnout in ministry … Continue reading

Posted in Gospels, Luke, Mark, Matthew, New Testament | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment