The Gospel of Luke, The Beloved Physician: An Introduction

Find a quiet place, alone and apart from distractions. Be comfortably alert, still, and at peace. Recite the Lord’s Prayer. Sing or cant the Jesus Prayer. Pray for family, friends, neighbors, and yourself.

1.         This Gospel is the story of the Jewish Messiah written by a Gentile, and is the first of two books, which are the Gospel and the Book of Acts. The date of the writings is between 62 and 64 AD according to the majority of Biblical commentators. There are other views as well.

2.         Some distinguishing characteristics of Luke are: He traces Jesus’ genealogy to Adam; he commends Samaritans, which is revolutionary; he shows there is a place for women as followers of Jesus; he shows that Gentiles will accept the Gospel; he has more of the parables of Jesus than the other Gospel writers; he is the most educated of the Gospel writers; he spent years in association with the ministry of Paul, and Paul highly commends Luke;  Luke is writing to second generation Christians; one of Luke’s reasons for writing his Gospel and Acts is to show the message of Jesus had reached Rome and that the Gospel is to be proclaimed to the entire world; the Gospel and Acts are addressed to Theophilus, which means friend of God; Luke acts as an historian as he spoke with eye witnesses to the ministry of Jesus; Luke is careful to show that the events of Jesus’ life were in fulfillment of ancient prophecy; he shows that Christianity is not a new religion but is the fulfillment of the faith of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

3.         Though trained as a physician, he may still have been a slave, which was common in that day.

4.         Of special note are the “we” and “us” passages in Acts, among which are Acts 16:10–17, Acts 20:5–21:18, and Acts 27:1–28–16. It is recommended that these passages be examined.  

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