Thirdmill Study Bible

Notes on Luke 4:14-30

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Sermon at Nazareth - Luke 4:14-30

Only reported by Luke, Jesus declared his mission to those at his hometown synagogue. In doing so, he explained the gospel he would preach (vv. 18-19). It was a time of great grace (v. 22) as well as judgment (vv. 23-27) as he was ultimately rejected there (vv. 28-29).

Luke 4:14-19

See HC 31.

Luke 4:14

returned to Galilee. After Jesus's baptism and temptation, Jesus returned to his home region (1:26). power of the Spirit. Jesus's empowerment of the Spirit was not new or temporary. The Spirit's power filled Jesus's entire life and ministry (1:35; 3:22; 4:1), especially and essentially in his teaching (v. 15).

Luke 4:15

teach. In his ministry as the Christ, Jesus healed diseases, cast out demons, trained disciples, and confronted the false spiritual leaders in Israel. But the heart of his ministry leading up to the cross was preaching and teaching God's word (see 4:32, 6:46-49; Matt. 7:28-29; Mark 1:15). synagogues. These gatherings do not appear in the Old Testament. They most likely began during Israel's exile when the people were cut off from the temple as the central place of worship. A normal synagogue gathering consisted of a recitation of the Shema (Deut. 6:4-9), prayers, readings from the Law and Prophets, followed by a priestly blessing and an exposition of Scripture. praised. A word usually used of God alone. By using it here, Luke emphasized Jesus's deity.

Luke 4:16-21

See WCF 21.6; WLC 117; WSC 60.

Luke 4:16

Nazareth. The town in Galilee where Jesus was raised (v. 23; 1:26; 2:4, 39, 51; Mark 1:24). Luke reminded his readers of this fact, highlighting the rejection Jesus faced (vv. 28-29). custom. Any qualified man in the group could get up and read. Luke indicated Jesus regularly attended and participated in the synagogue services. On this occasion, Jesus's reputation had gone before him after preaching (v. 15). There was probably a sense of expectation in the group when Jesus got up to read (vv. 20-22).

Luke 4:17

found the place. Luke records specific texts that Jesus found and read (Isa. 61:1-2a; 58:6). Implied is his intimate familiarity with the Scriptures (see Ps. 119:10-11, 15-16).

Luke 4:18-19

Spirit of the Lord is upon me. Reflects Jesus's self-awareness of his calling and anointing (2:49; 3:21-22). He quoted passages promising salvation for God's suffering people. tell good news. Preach the gospel (Mark 1:15). Luke portrayed Jesus as a prophet and teacher (7:16, 39; 9:8, 19; 13:33; 24:19; Acts 3:22; 7:37, 52; see note on v. 15). What follows explains the good news (gospel). poor. Those of low economic status, but also anyone is humble and understands their need of God (see 1:52; 5:29-32; 6:20; 1 Cor. 1:26-29). captives. Freedom and deliverance are metaphors for salvation (1:77; 3:3; 24:47; Acts 2:38; 5:31; 10:43; 13:38; 26:18). Jesus brings freedom to the captives. blind. Jesus healed not only physical blindness (7:21-22; 18:35-43) but also spiritual blindness (24:32, 44-45; 2 Cor. 4:4-6). oppressed. Unlike the previous prophets, Jesus's preaching would not merely call for freedom for the oppressed. He would make it a reality (see 3:15-18; 11:14-23, 31-32; 18:38-39; 19:37-38). year of the Lord's favor. This is the year of Jubilee, where liberation was declared every fifty years in Israel. The land and people were made new by lack of farming, people returning to their ancestral land, debts being forgiven, and slaves being released (Lev. 25:8-55). Interestingly, Jesus quotes the first half of the line here, but omits the second half, "the day of vengeance of our God." This became a sign of greater renewal and salvation from the Lord, which Jesus accomplished. See WLC 42.

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