Sermons on Luke

I Will Follow You

It almost sounds like Jesus is trying to discourage people from following him, doesn’t it? And yet, of course, we know that he came to invite everyone to follow him, so we know he doesn’t want to turn anyone away. So what’s going on? There’s a theme in Luke’s gospel that comes into play here, I think. The paragraph we’re studying tomorrow is at the beginning of a part of Luke that is often called The Travel Narrative or The…

This Man Went Down to his House Justified

This week we enter a four-week stretch in the One Word devotional readings where we focus on the nature of salvation. These four themes are Justification, Propitiation, Redemption, and Atonement. Tomorrow we’ll study the first of those–Justification–by using a story Jesus once told about two men who went to the temple to pray. One pleased God, and one didn’t. The punch line is verse 14: “I tell you, this man went down to his house justified, rather than the other.” That…

The Kingdom of God Has Come Near

“Kingdom” is the emphasis for our One Word devotional book reading for the upcoming week, so I plan to focus on that theme Sunday. Kingdom is a hugely significant theme in the Bible–it’s used more than 200 times in the Old Testament alone–but sometimes we’re a bit vague on exactly what it means. Sometimes people think of kingdom as synonymous with the church, but that doesn’t come close to explaining the nuances and implications of kingdom thought in the Bible. Sometimes people…

Fresh Wineskins

Some people are quick to disregard old things, as if everything traditional is bad. Other folks, on the other hand, are irrationally committed to old ways, even when new approaches might work better. This partly explains the ongoing tension between generations that always seems to be felt. Jesus might’ve waded a little into a discussion like that with his challenge of the religion of his day. Many religious leaders rejected him because he was bringing something new, and for them,…

Which Do You Want?

Two weeks ago we looked at Jesus’ predictions concerning his upcoming crucifixion, and last Sunday we studied his taking the Passover meal and reinterpreting it for the apostles (and for the church). Tomorrow we’re going to reflect on a part of one of his trials that began early on that fateful Friday morning. The religious leaders had brought him before Pilate, the Roman prefect of Judea, whose primary goal was to keep the locals peaceful and relatively happy so that…