Luke’s Volume II
Whatever our religious persuasion, we owe it to ourselves to read the only first century history of the most powerful spiritual force in the world. Today the Jesus movement takes many different forms from high church Anglicans and Roman Catholics to low-church Plymouth Brethren and Quakers without paid clergy.
As the Christian movement multiplied followers, Dr. Luke’s sequel to his Gospel came to be called the “Acts of the Apostles.” Near the end of the second century, Irenaeus referred to it as the “testimony of Luke regarding the Apostles,” and the 11th century Manuscript 1175 simply called it “Acts.”
The founding documents of the Church weren’t into titles or declaring who the human author was. It was far more important to simply write down the words as the Spirit inspired them, and if we pay careful attention to Luke’s text we will discover that God, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit take center stage in the action.
Here are some crucial questions I’m asking as we begin our study:
- How did a small sect within Judaism in first century Palestine become a multi-racial group including Jews and Gentiles united in what came to be called the Church?
- How did a crucified, Galilean Jew become the One who was worshiped from Rome to the most remote outbacks in the Roman Empire?
- How did a persecuting, young Pharisee become the most powerful voice in causing the Good News about Jesus to spread?
- How was the creation of this new Jesus movement actually rooted in the revelation given to the Jewish people in their Scriptures?
- How could the Jesus movement claim to be the fulfillment of God’s promises in the Jewish Scriptures when many Jews remained so unresponsive?
- Why must the eyewitness testimony of the Apostles to the death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus be taken to the farthest corners of our world?
LORD, help me to open my own heart to what You are saying in this sequel to Luke’s Gospel and flame my own passion to share Jesus and His one of a kind, gracious good news with as many as I can.
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